The U.S. Navy has awarded Lockheed Martin $23 million to develop the Integrated Combat System, which could potentially connect the Navy’s and Coast Guard’s surface fleets. The award could be worth up to $1.1 billion if all options are exercised through fiscal 2030. Lockheed’s winning bid was one of two submitted, and the Navy’s new program office for the integrated combat system issued a request for proposals for systems engineering and software integration in May 2022.
Joe DePietro, Lockheed’s vice president and general manager for multi-domain combat solutions, stated that the company’s 21st Century Security strategy is delivering capabilities including the Integrated Combat System, a next-generation combat management system aligned with the Navy’s objectives to deliver high-quality, scalable capability across the surface navy. The Navy envisions a common combat system connecting ships in the future, using Lockheed’s Aegis Combat System for destroyers, cruisers, littoral combat ships, frigates, and unmanned surface vessels. Amphibious ships and aircraft carriers use a separate Ship Self-Defense System developed by Raytheon and managed by Lockheed.
Lockheed has been digitizing the Aegis Combat System and Ship Self-Defense System as much as possible, virtualizing the Aegis system to run from a small-form computer package instead of requiring massive hardware on a ship. This virtualized Aegis system has been plugged onto unmanned surface vessels to launch missiles, become the heart of the Army’s ground-based Typhon mid-range capability for land and maritime defense, and has been used as a digital twin to test out new capabilities live on ships without disrupting their established combat systems.