The US Army’s Integrated Fires Mission Command (IFMC) Project Office has approved the service’s Integrated Battle Command System (IBCS) for full rate production (FRP) under a “Defense Acquisition Board (DAB)” decision.
This major milestone for the Northrop Grumman-developed IBCS comes after the system wrapped up initial operational test and evaluation in October 2022. It also intercepted a cruise missile in a “special test event” that took place in November last year, demonstrating its capability to execute a kill chain against a ground launched cruise missile surrogate.
In December 2021, Northrop Grumman was awarded a $1.4 billion production contract for low rate initial production and full rate production. Initial operational capability for IBCS is on track for a declaration in 2023.
“IBCS is the army’s top air and missile defense modernization effort and the only Army Acquisition Category 1D program,” said Col. Chris Hill, project manager of the IFMC Project Office in Huntsville, Ala.
IBCS executed a diverse range of rigorous testing on its path to achieving FRP. According to the army, testing and evaluation proved the system’s capability to integrate a variety of sensors and effectors to work together under an integrated command and control system.
IBCS is designed to enable battle survivable “any-sensor, best-effector” operations by fusing information from multiple, disparate sensors to create a single integrated air picture, and employing all available effectors to defeat advancing threats.
“The Army is proving it can and will succeed with its modernization plans as we continue to build momentum for the future,” said Brig. Gen. Frank Lozano, Program Executive Officer, Missiles and Space. “The sensor and effector integration this program brings to air and missile defense will ensure that our warfighters are best equipped to provide air defense against enemy threats. The success of this program is a testament to the incredible talent and capability of the soldiers, civilians and industry partners whose work ensures the safety and security of our nation.”