Lockheed Martin announced tuesday that it will team with Bombardier and Raytheon to compete for the US Air Force's next generation Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) replacement.
The team aimed to develop a low-risk, affordable replacement for the E-8 Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS), a ground surveillance, battle management, as well as command and control aircraft that was built by Northrop Grumman.
Northrop and Boeing have also said that they plan to compete for the contract when the Air Force launches a competition in the future.
The head of Lockheed's aeronautics division, Orlando Carvalho said the project would be led by Lockheed's Skunkworks research and development shop. Further the project would feature an open architecture that would allow the government to own the technical baseline for future upgrades.
Lockheed will serve as the main integrator for the project and Raytheon will bring its expertise with various surveillance sensors, mission systems integration, and JSTARS communications.
Bombardier will provide its ultra-long-range Global business jet, which Lockheed said is less expensive to operate than modern airliners and requires less refueling.
"We plan to bring all this technology and expertise together to offer what we believe will be a very competitive solution," Carvalho said.
The teaming agreement is suitable to the US government's desire for strong industry partnerships and provides the Air Force superior capabilities, Lockheed added.
Carvalho added that it was the first time that Lockheed had teamed up to pursue a major programme with Bombardier. The Air Force already uses the Bombardier Global as the basis for its Battlefield Airborne Communications Node, or BACN programme.