Lockheed Martin UK Provides Royal Navy With New Situational Awareness Capability
London, UK, November 26 2009: Lockheed Martin UK has recently completed the successful installation, set to work and trial of its Bridge Command Display (BCD) and localised bridge Navigation Local Area Network (NavLAN) onboard HMS Monmouth.
The BCD was developed under Lockheed Martin’s Independent Research And Development (IRAD) programme to provide the Command Team on the bridge a focal point for the display of fused Situational Awareness (SA) data, during maritime interdiction and surveillance operations.
Lockheed Martin has not only enabled the BCD to provide the bridge team with a fused SA picture, but has also included the capability to display video streaming from the Royal Navy’s Merlin Mk1 helicopter’s Wescam, originally fitted under a Full Motion Video (FMV) Urgent Operational Requirement. Command can review Merlin Wescam video overlaid on top of an electronic chart, as used on the Warship Electronic Chart Display and Information System (WECDIS), which also transmits SA data to the BCD.
“Innovation lies at the heart of our customer-focused strategy," said Bill Widner, VP and Group Managing Director, Lockheed Martin UK Integrated Systems. "We are committed to enabling the Royal Navy to operate new and advanced systems that will improve operational situational awareness. By focusing our IRAD investment on expanding customer capability, Lockheed Martin UK remains ideally placed to extend value to customers with inherent benefits designed to satisfy front-line theatre operations.”
The BCD was demonstrated to Navy Command staff last July and generated a keen interest to provide this capability for HMS Monmouth as a minor trial, prior to her deployment in September 2009.
Training was provided for the Commanding Officer and ship’s crew, who were keen to put to sea in order to benefit from this new facility. The Commanding Officer confirmed that the BCD would play an essential role that, until now, had been denied to the bridge teams. His intention was to maximise the use of the BCD during the upcoming deployment, which would entail HMS Monmouth undertaking anti-piracy and other maritime interdiction operations, for which the BCD is specifically designed.
Lockheed Martin UK currently has two other trial activities to be undertaken; the first is to fit a second BCD and NavLAN on the aircraft carrier, HMS Ark Royal, followed by a NavLAN application on a P2000 Fast Patrol Boat.
The Royal Navy will use the HMS Ark Royal installation to evaluate the significance of the BCD for Command planning and Task Force Operations in capital ships. The NavLAN will not only improve the quality of training but will also trim costs by reducing both training time as well as the need to purchase paper charts for training purposes. In addition, the Royal Navy will utilise this pilot scheme to evaluate the NavLAN potential for installation in larger vessels.
Lockheed Martin UK, a unit of Lockheed Martin Corporation, is a leader in systems integration working on major programmes spanning the aerospace, defence and civil sectors. The organisation works with more than 100 business partners and employs over 1700 people at sites across the UK.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2008 sales of $42.7 billion.