Northrop Grumman has introduced version 2.0 of the US Army’s integrated air and missile defence battle command system (IBCS) software, following comprehensive testing conducted at its contractor system integration laboratory in Huntsville, US.

Considered as an upgrade to version 1.0 released in April 2011, the new version features enhanced interfaces with Patriot, Sentinel radar and Link 16 systems, including additional combat aids to the common warfighter machine interface (CWMI).

"We are excited to demonstrate our open architecture that will allow any sensor and any shooter to be plugged into the army’s integrated fire control network."

Northrop Grumman Information Systems air and missile defence systems vice president Kelley Zelickson said the release represents significant progress towards the planned army integrated air and missile defence (AIAMD) demonstration in 2013.

"We are excited to demonstrate our open architecture that will allow any sensor and any shooter to be plugged into the army’s integrated fire control network," Zelickson added.

IBCS version 2.0 leverages the company’s successful joint track management capability, which was demonstrated through first time sharing of composite air tracks between the army integrated fire control network and navy cooperative engagement capability in September 2011.

CWMI enhancements have emerged from the feedback provided by soldiers participating in the warfighter experiments being held at Fort Sill in Oklahoma, US, during the last three years.

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Representing the first display of the IBCS directing fires for AIAMD weapons, the AIAMD demonstration is scheduled to feature IBCS V2.1 software, as well as other army systems, including Patriot and Sentinel radar.

Northrop is developing ICBS, which has an integrated air and missile-defence command and control capability, as part of a $577m five-year, cost-plus-incentive-fee / cost-plus-fixed-fee contract awarded by the army in January 2010.

Expected to be deployed by 2014, the ICBS is a network-centric systems-of-systems solution supporting integration of sensors, weapons, and battle management command, control, communications and intelligence systems, to enable warfighter make informed decisions in the battlefield.