General Dynamics UK Wins More Net-Centric Business
The UK took a step toward airborne network-centric warfare this month when it confirmed that the Tactical Information Exchange Capability (TIEC) would be added to Royal Air Force Tornado GR4 and Harrier GR9 combat aircraft. General Dynamics UK is the key provider of TIEC, which allows ground troops to transmit the coordinates of targets that they have identified into the cockpits of RAF Harrier GR9 and Tornado GR4 aircraft. A single black box is added to the aircraft. Link 16 information can also be received and transmitted to provide pilots with threat information or intra-flight data communication. The UK subsidiary of General Dynamics is becoming a major supplier of communications and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) systems. It is responsible for the huge Bowman digital radio program in the UK and has supplied TIEC-like systems to the Spanish Air Force for its F/A-18s and Typhoons. It is competing against L-3 Com for the MoD’s Project Listener, which would combine the data from various airborne ISR sensors to provide a Network Centric Collaborative Targeting capability, similar to that now being introduced in the U.S.