The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center has awarded Lockheed Martin a contract worth some $8 million to provide an air and missile defense planner that can be integrated into the Air Force Air Operations Center, according to a Feb. 4 company release. “This planner offers an unprecedented capability to analyze multiple sources of information to support rapid and efficient deployment decisions,” said Rob Smith, vice president of C4ISR for Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions. “Our goal is to enhance situational awareness and facilitate collaborative planning for all combatant commands. The software will utilize map-based planning tools and “decision aids” to link different weapon and sensor data allowing “AOC operators to collaboratively plan missions with greater speed and higher confidence,” states the release. The planner also will be based on non-proprietary software, allowing USAF to easily “introduce new capabilities.”
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.