FY97 DOT&E Annual Report



MEDIUM EXTENDED AIR DEFENSE SYSTEM (MEADS)

Army ACAT ID Program
Numher of systems TBD
Total program cost (TY$) TBD
Average unit cost (TY$) TBD
Milestone II TBD
Full-rate production TBD

Prime Contractor
MEADS Inc. (Hughes Raytheon)
MEADS International (Lockheed Martin)

SYSTEM DESCRIPTION & CONTRIBUTION TO JOINT VISION 2010

The Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) will be a highly mobile, low to medium air defense system designed to replace the HAWK and PAC-3 air defense system. It will be a key element of the theater missile defense in the Army Air and Missile Defense architecture. The MEADS weapon system is needed to ensure protection of maneuver forces. The system will provide area and point defense capabilities against both tactical missiles, which include tactical ballistic, air-to-surface, and Anti-Radiation Missiles; and air-breathing threats, which consist of fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, cruise missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles. The system will consist of a sensor, launcher, missile, and Tactical Operations Center (TOC) and will be capable of stand-alone operational capability. As part of the Army Air and Missile Defense Architecture, the system will be compatible and interoperable with other Army air defense systems and will interface with joint and allied sensors and Battle Management Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (BM/C4I) networks.

The MEADS battalion will consist of three firing batteries and a headquarters battery. Each battery will have nine launchers controlled by a battery TOC. Each launcher will be equipped with eight hit-to-kill missiles. Two radars, an X-band fire control radar, and a low-frequency radio frequency surveillance radar will be intrinsic to the MEADS battery. External sensors can provide alerting and cueing information to any TOC in the battalion.

The MEADS BM/C4I architecture is fully netted and distributed among TOCs, sensors, and launchers. This netting, which comprises the Multi-functional Information Distribution System, the Mobile Subscriber Equipment, and the Single-Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System, allows any unit in the battalion to exchange information with any other unit on an as-needed basis.

The MEADS system is a response to ensure protection of maneuver forces. The system will provide area and point defense capabilities against tactical missiles and air-breathing threats. MEADS will contribute to three of the four Joint Vision 2010 operational concepts: precision engagement, full-dimensional protection, and dominant maneuver forces. MEADS incorporates state-of-the-art technologies in its sensors, weapons, and BM/C4I systems. Information superiority will enable MEADS to be fully capable of operating autonomously or in a network, receiving and exchanging data with other theater air and missile defense systems and external sensors. The MEADS system will help ensure that Joint Forces enjoy full-spectrum dominance in the theater by being a primary contributor to full-dimensional protection of the dominant maneuver forces through precision engagement of threat tactical missiles and air breathing threats.


BACKGROUND INFORMATION

The MEADS program is refining system-design concepts to meet the technical requirements agreed to by the MEADS partners—the United States, Germany, and Italy. In July 1996, NATO formed the NATO MEADS Management Agency (NAMEADSMA) to lead program activity. The United States, Germany, and Italy have staffed the agency. NAMEADSMA awarded contracts for Program Definition and Validation (PD/V) phase in October 1996 to two international teams. PD/V is scheduled to be completed in early FY99, and MEADS will down-select to a single contractor team at that time. The program schedule goal supports a U.S. First Unit Equipped (FUE) in FY07, with an FUE for Germany and Italy as early as FY05. The Army modernization plan for MEADS replaces four PAC-2 battalions with six MEADS battalions.

The proposed management structure includes both U.S. and international arrangements. U.S. oversight is accomplished through the Integrated Product Team (IPT) process. The Army's MEADS National Product Office oversees U.S. requirements development and serves as the single point of contact for U.S. support to NAMEADSMA. International oversight is accomplished through the National Armaments Directors and a MEADS Steering Committee. The Army PEO for Air and Missile Defense represents the United States on the Steering Committee. Leadership positions of NAMEADSMA will rotate among the nations.

The MEADS acquisition concept will harmonize DoD 5000.2 guidance with the NATO acquisition process. Since NATO defers most risk-reduction activity to the D&D phase, the DAE will review the program at the following key acquisition points:

The Army Acquisition Executive will review the program for U.S. production (two years into the NATO production phase). Program documentation at each DAE decision point will match what would normally be available for U.S. milestone decisions.

Disclosure and transfer of technical data are important features of this international program. The Army, BMDO, and OSD have agreed to a process that streamlines the foreign disclosure approval process and reduces the decision timeline to 10 days or less. Disclosure actions that are not processed expeditiously will be elevated to the IPT process for resolution.


TEST & EVALUATION ACTIVITY

MEADS T&E activities have not formally begun. Several T&E IPTs have been held to begin planning the test program. The first international T&E IPT was held in November 1997. Progress towards test planning is dependent on finalizing the acquisition strategy and program funding.


TEST & EVALUATION ASSESSMENT

The MEADS program is in the requirements development phase. The sponsoring countries are together developing the MEADS system operational requirements. According to draft requirements, the MEADS system must provide area and point defense capabilities against a variety of threat tactical missiles and air-breathing threats. The MEADS mission is complicated by having to accomplish its mission in the theater area that will be densely populated with both friendly and threat targets. The system development risks and challenges that exist with all other missile defense systems also exist for MEADS. MEADS must acquire, track , and identify both friendly and threat targets, fuse the data , then and effectively engage and kill the threat targets. The difficulty and risk associated with the MEADS system development is very high; however, the payoff of a successful program will also be very high.

Due to the requirement to effectively kill multiple types of targets the T&E program will be very complex, difficult, and costly compared to other TMD systems. We plan to develop a program that includes a balanced mix of testing, supported by modeling and simulation. We have begun coordinating with Germany and Italy to plan a thorough, adequate, T&E program for MEADS that will satisfy each country's requirements.