|Updated: 29-Nov-2006||NATO Update|
NATO on track for 2010 theatre missile defence
On 28 November, a contract has been signed that puts NATO on track for having, by 2010, a system to protect troops on missions against ballistic missiles.
NATO selected in September 2006 an international consortium led by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) to build an Integration Test Bed for the Alliance’s future Active Layered Theatre Missile Defence (ALTBMD) capability.
After two months of negotiations, ALTBMD Programme Manager, General (Ret) Billard, and SAIC contracting Officer, Mr Robert Larrick, signed the contract on the first day of NATO’s Riga Summit, in the presence of NATO Secretary General, Jaap de Hoop Scheffer, and NATO Assistant Secretary General for Defence Investment, Marshall Billingslea.
Once fully implemented, the system will be able to protect troops in specific area against short and medium range ballistic missiles by intercepting them.
This is one of three programmes that NATO is pursuing in the area of missile defence.A system of systems
The theatre missile defence will be a multi-layered system of systems, comprising early warning sensors, radar and various interceptors.
NATO member countries will provide the sensors and weapon systems, while NATO will develop a commonly funded NATO architecture to integrate all of these elements.
The contract is worth approximately 75 million Euro for work that will be conducted over a period of six years.
Welcoming the development, NATO’s Assistant Secretary General for Defence Investment, Marshall Billingslea, described the contract signature as an “excellent example of co-operation between Industry and a NATO Programme Office”.
“NATO urgently needs a NATO theatre missile defence system to protect its troops against ballistic missiles. The Test Bed that SAIC will build is an essential tool for the development of these defences,” he said.
The winning consortium, led by SAIC from McLean from Virginia, U.S.A., is comprised of the following companies: Raytheon (US), EADS Astrium (Europe), Thales (FR) Thales Raytheon System Company (FR/US); IABG (GE), TNO (NL), Qinetiq (UK), DATAMAT (IT); Diehl (GE).