SUCCESSFUL TRIALS OF STATE-OF-THE-ART COMBAT SYSTEM PROVES SIKA VEHICLE READY NOW FOR U. S. ARMY'S FUTURE COMBAT SYSTEM
DALLAS, TX, June 17th, 2002 -- With successful performance at field trials in Ft. Carson, Co. last week, an advanced integrated reconnaissance vehicle developed by SIKA International -- a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems -- proved it is ready now to meet initial requirements of the Future Combat System envisioned for the U.S. Army's Objective Force.
"The vehicle's maturity and demonstrated performance make it the only system capable of meeting the assessment for System Design and Development of the Future Combat System by May 2003," said Ken McGinty, SIKA Managing Director. "Last week's trials prove that the SIKA vehicle has a technically mature design with system integration advancements that can meet the U.S. Army's Future Combat System performance requirements head-on."
The Tactical Reconnaissance Armored Combat Equipment Requirement/Future Scout and Cavalry System (TRACER/FSCS) is a modern, C-130 deployable, survivable, state-of-the-art reconnaissance vehicle that provides stealthy, all-weather reconnaissance and attack capability previously unavailable in ground vehicles. It was developed through a collaborative program between the United States and the United Kingdom, with each country investing $150 million into the project.
"While the UK has chosen to leverage their technology investment to pursue a family of combat vehicles for Future Rapid Effects Systems (FRES), plans to take advantage of this technology in the United States are not as clear," McGinty said. "Any delay in fielding this state-of-the-art, C-130 deployable system would disadvantage our nation's soldiers and hamper our commanders' ability to perform critical requirements."
At the tactical roll-out and demonstration, more than 50 senior military officials from the UK and US witnessed the vehicle's many leap-ahead capabilities including a raised sensor system capable of rapid wide-area search, on-the-move operation, and long-range identification with an elevated mast. The system's integration and packaging design enhances the sensor suite with a robust 'plug-and-play' C4I architecture, creating an efficient and effective warfighting environment for legacy and future forces of US and UK armies.
"After 25 years of operating armored vehicles all over the world, I have never experienced a system as well designed for soldier mission effectiveness and comfort, nor have I ridden in a tracked vehicle with as smooth a ride over rough terrain," noted UK Army Colonel Peter Flach. "It's apparent that significant time was also taken to design modularity and rapid 'pit-stop"-like maintenance, keeping TRACER/FSCS in action and allowing easy field repairs."
The joint program has been designed to achieve first unit equipped in 2008. Its successful Product Development Phase will conclude in July.
Further demonstrations by the military will continue over the next two weeks with soldiers from both the US and UK armies. The three-man TRACER/FSCS crew will demonstrate vehicle capabilities in live scenarios against opposing manned vehicles, tanks, and structures. Testing in the rugged Colorado Mountains will validate 48-hour mission capability, effectiveness of a three-man crew, 24-hour surveillance performance, battlefield survivability, sustainability, and maintainability.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control develops, manufactures and integrates world-class air defense, fire support, strike weapon, naval munition, combat vision, anti-armor and advanced product solutions and systems for U.S. and international armed forces.
Craig Vanbebber, 972-603-1615 e-mail email@example.com