The U.S. Air Force has awarded development contracts to 28 vendors for its Advanced Battle Management System that could be worth $950 million over five years. The indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contracts allow for the vendors to compete for individual task orders through May 28, 2025.
The ABMS program is the Air Force’s distributed concept for multidomain battle management command and control. It was born out of the termination of the E-8C Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) aircraft. The service was previously planning to replace its existing Boeing 707-based E-8Cs with a fleet of 17 manned ISR aircraft based on a business jet platform. However, the Air Force became concerned about the survivability of a centralized battle management platform and shifted to the distributed system-of-systems approach utilizing a mix of assets, like satellites and manned and unmanned aircraft.
The latest development contracts support the maturation, demonstration, and proliferation of Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) capabilities that will feed into the distributed ABMS network. In other words, the program aims to develop an “internet of things” type environment where systems in all domains (air, land, sea, space, cyber, and electromagnetic spectrum) can connect to disseminate information to personnel.
The 28 vendors included in the contract are: Alion Science and Technology, Apogee Research, World Wide Technology, BAE Systems, Boeing Defense Systems, Borsetta, CACI, Chooch Intelligence Technologies, Collins Aerospace Co, Dell Technologies, Fregata Systems, General Dynamics, Hellebore Consulting Group, Honeywell Aerospace, Immersive Wisdom, L3 Harris, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Palantir, Parsons Government Services, Persistent Systems, Raytheon, Securboration, Silvus Technologies, Simple Sense, Solid State Scientific, Viasat, and Wind Talker Innovations.