Lockheed Martin’s VUIT-2 Delivers Video Network Capability in Theater
ORLANDO, FL, 02/23/2009 -- Lockheed Martin's [NYSE: LMT] Video from Unmanned Aerial Systems for Interoperability Teaming – Level 2 (VUITTM-2) for Apache technology recently began operational use in theater. The VUIT-2 system advanced from design to production in less than seven months to accommodate a rapid fielding request from the U.S. Army Vice Chief of Staff.
"VUIT-2 has proven its worth in combat operations," said Col. Eric Peterson, brigade commander of the 10th Combat Aviation Brigade (CAB). The 1-10 Attack Reconnaissance Battalion (ARB), a component of the 10th CAB, was the first VUIT-2-equipped unit and deployed with the system in late 2008.
VUIT-2 provides Apache aircrews with real-time streaming battlefield video and metadata from unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) on cockpit multi-purpose displays, enhancing situational awareness, providing real-time intelligence validation, reducing the sensor-to-shooter timeline and improving effectiveness against time-critical targets.
"Joint UAS – Apache operations have been very successful using VUIT-2," said Lt. Col. Robert Johnston, U.S. Army Product Manager Longbow Apache. "VUIT-2 allows the pilot to stream M-TADS imagery to Stryker vehicles on combat patrols. The Apache's real-time video informs the ground forces of potential danger zones, giving them an opportunity to plan alternate, safer routes."
"The rapid fielding of the 1-10 ARB resulted from a dedicated team of PM Apache, PM UAS, AATD [Aviation Applied Technology Directorate] and Lockheed Martin personnel, primarily focused on deploying this critical capability to the Warfighter," said Bob Gunning, vice president of Apache Programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "Equipped with Apache VUIT-2, aircrews can identify threats sooner and engage targets faster."
VUIT-2 can transmit both Apache and UAS video, via a mini-tactical common data link, to Soldiers on the ground equipped with One System Remote Video Terminals, allowing for faster confirmation and positive target identification. Once accurately confirmed, Apache aircrews can engage targets with precision missiles or other weapon systems. The VUIT-2 kit-based system is also compatible with multiple aviation platforms. The U.S. Army awarded Lockheed Martin a $9.3 million contract for Phase 2 nonrecurring engineering in December 2008.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 146,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation reported 2008 sales of $42.7 billion.