March 28, 2017: Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) recently completed initial integration for the U.S. Army's Modular Active Protection System (MAPS) soft-kill demonstrator.
Under TARDEC soft-kill demonstrator contracts awarded in 2015, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman worked together to prove the functionality of an open-architecture solution for MAPS. Using Lockheed Martin's Open Architecture Processor and Northrop Grumman's sensor and countermeasure systems, the team completed initial integration in preparation for full system demonstrations on an M1 Abrams tank in 2017.
"Industry's commitment to collaborate in developing this critical capability is the key to a truly modular active protection system," said Paul Lemmo, vice president of Fire Control/SOF CLSS at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "Through our collaboration, we verified the value of an open-system design, which allows for easy integration of current and future MAPS components."
Active protection system components, based on the MAPS Framework which embodies open-architecture principles, can be independently developed and rapidly integrated into a MAPS- based active protection system. This saves time, reduces cost and helps ensure the warfighter can be protected from ever-evolving threats. A soft-kill capability enables the active protection system to confuse an incoming sensor-based weapon system through spoofing, interference or obscuration, resulting in the elimination of the threat.
"Successful integration of the existing Northrop Grumman Passive Infrared Cueing Sensor (PICS) and Multifunction Electro-Optic System countermeasure (MEOS) within the MAPS framework demonstrates the value of the open architecture construct," said Arlene Camp, vice president of surveillance and targeting sensors at Northrop Grumman. "This open architecture construct, combined with multifunction capabilities, highlights the ability to adapt products developed for the air domain to the ground vehicle mission with reduced timelines and lower costs."
Lockheed Martin's Open Architecture Processor controls and processes information from multiple sensors and countermeasures, and drives information displays. Designed for safety and modularity, the Open Architecture Processor can easily accommodate upgraded sensors, components and countermeasures as they become available, further protecting the warfighter from emerging threats.
Northrop Grumman is a world leader in multifunction infrared sensor and countermeasure systems. These systems are designed with the built-in agility to rapidly adapt to evolving threats, making them ideal for ground vehicle active protection system applications.