Paige prods Lockheed Martin to integrate key C3I systems
- By Bob Brewin
- Oct 20, 1996
When executives of Lockheed Corp. and Martin-Marietta Corp. proposed a merger they touted the ability of the combined company to deliver economies of scale as well as systems synergy to the Defense Department. Now top Pentagon command and control officials have told the combined Lockheed Martin Corp. that it is time to deliver on those promises.
Emmett Paige Jr. assistant secretary of Defense for command control communications and intelligence (ASD/C3I) has prodded Lockheed Martin both publicly and privately over the past month to fulfill what he views as the company's "moral obligation" to ensure that the myriad systems it is developing for DOD meet at a minimum the standards of interoperability set down by the Defense Information Systems Agency.
Paige views this interoperability as a critical requirement because systems under contract by Lockheed Martin and its other predecessor companies - Loral Corp. IBM Federal Systems and General Electric - sit at the heart of the United States' military strategy. Lockheed Martin systems help train troops manage logistics and personnel at stateside bases track the movement of men and materiel from and to the battlefield and help those deployed forces accurately put steel on the target.
Looking at the depth and breadth of the Lockheed Martin C3I systems Paige told members of the Industry Advisory Council earlier this month that "we have to force Lockheed Martin to build all these systems so that they do operate with GCCS [Global Command and Control System] " the DISA-developed system recently adopted by the Joint Chiefs of Staff to manage U.S. forces worldwide.
DISA director Lt. Gen. Al Edmonds has also pushed the company to ensure that its systems conform to the GCCS Common Operating Environment. Without mentioning Lockheed Martin directly Edmonds told the recent Air Force Information Technology Conference in Montgomery Ala. of his concerns about the lack of COE compliance with systems under development by a "large" contractor.
Art Money the Air Force acquisition executive also has concerns about Lockheed Martin's ability to manage programs it inherited from its predecessor companies FCW has learned. Money believes the company has started to get its own integration in order but "still has a long way to go." By adhering internally to standards such as the COE Money believes the Pentagon will also make integration and interoperability of these Lockheed Martin systems easier by reducing the problems that result from "different standards and stovepipes."
Privately Paige communicated his concerns about programs and systems that he viewed as "scattered about the corporation" to other high-ranking Pentagon C3I managers. "I do not believe we will get the synergism that is achievable with the fragmentation or distribution of [C4I] programs throughout Lockheed Martin and in the end we will pay a lot more [than]...if all...efforts were centralized...."
These concerns were communicated to Frank Lanza the former Loral chief operating officer who now runs the Lockheed Martin C3I division currently based in New York. Early this month Lanza as well as Art Johnson the company's federal systems vice president met with Paige Edmonds and James Soos deputy assistant secretary of Defense for C3I. At that meeting the Lockheed Martin executives unveiled what they called Project Rainbow to centralize C3I system management under Johnson.
Under Rainbow Lockheed Martin will strive to ensure compliance with the GCCS COE and all its systems and programs even if the contract does not require it FCW has learned. The Lockheed Martin officials FCW was told also agreed with Paige that they indeed did "bear some moral responsibility" to ensure interoperability as well as provide the appropriate Pentagon officials with a warning if some of these programs ran into trouble meeting interoperability standards.
After the meeting with the top Lockheed Martin officials Paige was "satisfied" that they agreed with his views on interoperability and information sharing DOD sources said. Lockheed Martin has not yet put the multibillion-dollar Defense Message System program under Lanza's direction something that still causes concern because it is designed to operate across all of DOD.
A New York-based Lockheed Martin spokeswoman said the company is "totally in concert with Gen. Paige's concerns and we agree that all our C3I programs should have a common operating environment and interoperate. We have structured the C3I sector to do that. We believe that all our C3I programs should work across all the services."
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Major Lockheed Martin DOD C3I Contracts
Joint* Defense Message System* Global Transportation Network
Air Force* Air Force Mission Support System * Global Combat Support System-Air Force* Contingency TheaterAutomated Planning System* Theater Battle Management Core Systems
Army* Close Combat Tactical Trainer* Maneuver Control System* Warsim 2000* Sustaining Base Information Services