Northrop Grumman has submitted its phase II bid for the prime contractor role for the US Army’s integrated air and missile defence battle command system (IBCS) competition.

IBCS is the first step towards an integrated air and missile defence battle command capability for the army, and a joint capability for the nation.

Northrop Grumman Information Systems vice president for air and missile defence systems Karen Williams said that Northrop had developed a non-proprietary, open architecture approach that connects the army systems with joint systems, allowing the services to operate as one integrated force.

“IBCS is not only about connecting the right sensor with the right shooter, it is about integrating a robust battle command element. We are ready to help the army move forward on IBCS and get this critical capability deployed to the warfighter,” said Williams.

By 2014, programmes such as Patriot, SLAMRAAM, JLENS, Sentinel and THAAD will be connected via an integrated fire control network that allows the warfighter to use any sensor and any weapon to achieve mission objectives. The programme is expected to be fielded by 2014.

The programme will enable future integration of sensors and weapons using standard interfaces. It is being managed by the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Project Office, Program Executive Office for Missiles and Space in Huntsville, Alabama.

Northrop Grumman leads one of the two teams awarded an 11-month phase I contract in Sept 2008 to begin preliminary design and development. The army will select one team in August.