Raytheon has delivered the first low rate initial production (LRIP) Army
Airborne Command and Control System (A2C2S) to the US Army. A2C2S uses the
combat proven H-60 airframe to provide Command and Control (C2) capability over
the battlefield on the move at high speed.
prototypes have supported the US Army's 4th infantry division in Iraq for more
than a year and the 3rd infantry division since May 2004 with successful
results. During 17 months of combat duty, these airborne platforms logged
thousands of mission hours to assist warfighters and peacekeepers overseas. The
US Army assessment on the A2C2S shows up that the system meets and exceeds the
initial requirements in terms of performance and reliability.
Operational assessment showed up that A2C2S is mature and ready for production.
As a result, Raytheon is under contract to manufacture five low rate initial
production (LRIP) A2C2S systems and two A-kit for EUH-60 helicopters. Additional
A2C2S systems are expected to be funded in fiscal year 2005. To date, A2C2S has
logged more than 3,000 operational hours with approximately 2,000 of them in
The US Army calls for around 120 A2C2S systems to be fielded during the
program's lifetime. A2C2S utilizes the combat proven UH-60L Blackhawk helicopter
modified through the addition of a mission equipment package suitable for C2
tasks and transforms the helicopter into airborne command post. The resulting
platform is used by commanders at brigade, division and above level to maintain
Command, Control and Communications (C3) while moving through the battlespace at
120 miles per hour (180 kilometers per hour).
This capability supporting digitized and non-digitized forces in all scenarios
is dubbed 'C-2 on-the-move'. The range of scenarios supported by the A2C2S
include full scale mechanized operations, smaller scale special operations, and
homeland defense applications. Tied to the last item, Raytheon is
developing the Homeland Defense Module that links civilians means to National
Guard and active military forces during disaster response and homeland security
missions. A first prototype is expected to roll out the production line in 2005.
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