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Lockheed Martin signs Australian air and missile defence system deal

25th April 2024 - 11:13 GMT | by The Shephard News Team in London


The system will provide Australia with an integrated air and missile defence capability. (Photo: Lockheed Martin)

Air 6500 Phase 1, worth AU$500 million (US$326 million), will result in a sovereign system that can provide greater situational awareness and help to defend against hostile aircraft and missiles. It will sit at the core of Australia’s Integrated Air and Missile Defence programme.

Lockheed Martin has signed a deal with the Australian DoD to provide Joint Air Battle Management System (JABMS) under project Air 6500 Phase 1 (Air 6500-1). The project will aim to provide integrated air and missile defence capability, particularly against high-speed threats.

Lockheed Martin was selected to provide the system over Northrop Grumman in August 2023.

The eight-year strategic partnership was signed after the company developed an Operator Evaluation System for the Joint Air Battle Management System whereby operators can access a secure test environment to provide feedback on Air 6500-1’s design and functionality. The information gathered will inform future development activities.

The Australian Defence Force (ADF) has envisioned an integrated defensive umbrella which ranges from tactical air and missile area defence for forward-deployed army expeditionary units, to a layered, continental air and missile defence system.

JABMS will connect ships, aircraft and other capabilities, also increasing interoperability with the US and allies. The broad system of systems will link platforms such as JORN radar, F-35A fighters, E-7A Wedgetail AEW aircraft, P-8A Poseidons, NASAMS, Hobart-class destroyers and Hunter-class frigates.

As part of the deal, Lockheed Martin Australia will establish a National Integrated Air and Missile Defence Ecosystem to support the ADF.

The Shephard News Team


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