Kockums Extends Cooperation With Northrop Grumman
(Source: Kockums AB; issued Feb. 19, 2003) Extending its cooperation with major US defense contractor Northrop Grumman, Kockums has signed a partnership agreement that comprises command-and-control systems for netcentric defense. Kockums is already cooperating with Northrop Grumman on the development of a stealth concept for naval surface vessels. Kockums is a member of the team that Northrop Grumman Ship Systems (NGSS) has assembled to bid for the stealth naval vessel contract currently out to tender in the USA.

In the new netcentric approach to defense, rapid reaction forces must be equipped with a new type of command-and-control system, to ensure that all units have access to all available data, and that they can also communicate with each other. In Sweden, a similar project in which Kockums is also involved is currently in progress, under the name LedsysT. This project focuses on the development of a combined services information management and command system. The acronym is short for the Swedish name Ledningssystem Teknisk del (Command System Technical Element). USA and Northrop Grumman have advanced a long way in the development of such a system for the US armed forces. The idea is that Kockums should share in the knowledge and experience gained so far, and participate in the system's further development.

The agreement is in the form of an MoU, Memorandum of Understanding, which specifies the relevant areas of technology and the intended focus. Discussions are currently in progress to determine how the agreement should be formulated in detail. Within the Northrop Grumman Group, Northrop Grumman Electronic Systems is the business unit with special know-how in this field.

This agreement will intensify our cooperation with Northrop Grumman, which is highly pleasing. We shall now be participating in joint projects both in terms of the total stealth concept and through our involvement in the development of concepts and technology for command systems designed for the new netcentric defense forces, says Kockums' CEO Martin Hagbyhn, commenting on the news.

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