Lockheed Martin Upgrades Airborne Intelligence Lab Testbed

Lockheed Martin [LMT] has upgraded its Airborne Multi-INT Lab (AML) manned airborne testbed to enhance its ability to deliver decision-quality intelligence, the company said Monday.

The AML is a modified Gulfstream III business jet with a readily reconfigurable platform to quickly explore how multiple sensors and onboard systems interact as well as how to best apply them for use in military and non-military markets, Lockheed Martin said. Gulfstream is a business unit of General Dynamics [GD].

The Airborne Multi-INT Lab (AML), a modified Gulfstream III business jet. Photo" Lockheed Martin.

The Airborne Multi-INT Lab, a modified Gulfstream III business jet. Photo" Lockheed Martin.

The company uses the AML to experiment with combinations of sensors, systems, and technologies to help customers develop ways to support a diverse range of contingency operations,

It is equipped with sensors including electro-optical/infrared systems, synthetic aperture radar, electronic intelligence and communications intelligence, various communications apertures, a radome on the aircraft's belly to fit sensors, four onboard workstations, and a computing capability that supports most commercial operating systems.

Lockheed Martin recently made changes to the AML's on-board processing capability to accelerate its ability to transform data into intelligence. The on-board processing collects and correlates disparate types of sensor data. Now the AML has an autonomous sensor control mode that can coordinate operations between the aircraft's various sensors.

The new mode allows operators to focus on mission planning and operational issues while the detailed execution is done autonomously, Lockheed Martin said.

The company also integrated a cognitive processing capability into the testbed's mission, which allows the rapid adaptation to a changing target environment.

Lockheed Martin highlighted the AML has an open architecture to ease sensor interchangeability. In the update, the AML's “plug-and-play” architecture was upgraded to extend the system's ability to integrate with existing ground architectures. Now additional new software and hardware can be integrated within hours.

“The AML has furthered our ability to expedite solution delivery, reduce the risk of those solutions, and help us deliver differentiated capabilities affordably to our customers,” Dr. Rob Smith, vice president of C4ISR for Lockheed Martin, said in a statement.

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