The Air Force recently awarded Northrop Grumman [NOC] an indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (ID/IQ) contract valued at up to $300 million for theAir Force Weather (AFW) program, according to a company statement.

AFW provides a range of terrestrial and space environmental information, products and services to military users worldwide.  The Air Force, Army, special operations forces and others rely on AFW for mission planning, combat operations by military units in the field and airfield and flight operations.

Photo: NASA.
Photo: NASA.

Under the contract, known as Systems Engineering, Management and Sustainment (SEMS) III, Northrop Grumman will continue to facilitate enterprise-level systems engineering, systems management and sustainment services. In addition, the company will support scientific projects, the transition of new capability to operations, logistics analysis and management, and testing and fielding support. Northrop Grumman said it has been the prime contractor for SEMS since 2002.

Supported systems include the Weather Data Analysis, Point Analysis Intelligence System and Air Force Weather Web Services, which provide timely data and services to warfighters making critical operational decisions. The Space Weather Analysis and Forecast System, which characterizes the near earth electrical and magnetic fields for global Defense Department space operations and communications, is also a supported system.

Northrop Grumman spokeswoman Margaret Mitchell-Jones said in a recent email AFW is a network-centric system that enables users to quickly access large quantities of weather data from multiple sources. Military users can request data and products on-demand or subscribe and receive the data in near real-time, she said. The contract, Mitchell-Jones said, has a five-year period-of-performance.

AFW services also provide for machine-to-machine (M2M), mission-tailored products that incorporate weather impact and effects for mission planning and decision making, Mitchell-Jones said. Additional programs supported by AFW include operational numerical weather modeling systems like the Land Information System, Weather Research Forecast Model and the Cloud Depiction and Forecast System II.