Initial Operational Capability (IOC):
Also Known As: Aerial Common Sensor
Origin: United States of America
Parent System: ACS
Initial Operational Capability (IOC): 2006
Total Production: 38
Total Cost: USD$4.6 billion
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Description: The Aerial Common Sensor (ACS) is the US Army's and US Navy's next generation Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) airborne platform. It provides advanced and affordable signal intelligence as well as target identification. It is being developed as the replacement for the US Army's Guardrail common sensor, the airborne reconnaissance low aircraft, and the Navy's fleet of EP-3 Aries II. The system will be fully compatible with E-8C JSTARS, U-2 and Global Hawk, while providing instantaneous access to intelligence from manned, unmanned and space-based platforms.
The ACS program life is expected to last over 20 years with a potential value of over $7 billion. Future growth is guaranteed thanks to its software-centric and open architecture design, as well as compatibility with FCS and DCGS systems. The SDD phase will provide five ACS mission ready packages with similar and enhanced capabilities currently deployed on legacy systems to be delivered in 2006. Low rate production is expected in 2007 and follow-on full rate production in 2009. The Lockheed-Martin solution will be installed on Embraer's ERJ-145 aircraft. The militarized ERJ-145 will benefit from low life cycle costs, worldwide support infrastructure associated to commercial airplanes.
On 3 August 2004, the US Army awarded a Lockheed-Martin team (Embraer, Argon Engineering, BAe Systems, General Dynamics, Harris, L-3 Communications and Raytheon) an $879 million contract covering development and demonstration (SDD) phase for ACS program. Early in January 2006 the US Army cancelled the Lockheed Martin Aerial Common Sensor (ACS) proposal based on ERJ145 jetliner. The ACS program was being threatened with cost escalates and the inability of the industry team to keep aircraft's weight low.
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