Home' Asia Pacific Defence Reporter : APDR March 2017 Contents 50 Asia Pacific Defence Reporter MAR 2017
be strong, citing its success and experience in
a number of performance-based contracts with
Defence supporting some of the most complex
platforms in Australia, such as that for the RAAF’s
Hawk Lead-In Fighter (LIF).
Another area BAE believes this experience
in Australia and globally will help is in the risk
management of the program, with its proposed
solution proven to have worked following substantial
R&D and proof of concept efforts. This is especially
important given the individual radars will be taken
offline during the upgrade, and the winning bidder
will need to provide certainty that the upgraded
radar is up on time.
BAE’s partners in the program are Raytheon
Australia, Daronmont Technologies and RCR
Infrastructure. Raytheon has been chosen for its
proven systems integration and software skills,
along with its experience in lowering project risk,
drawn in a large part from its experience in the
Hobart-class Air Warfare Destroyer program.
Daronmont Technologies is a wholly Australian
owned Defence Industry SME specialising in design,
engineering, integration and support of complex
high technology electronics and software-intensive
systems. It will be the ISR integrator in the program,
drawing from its experience in HF Surface-Wave
and S-band radar systems.
Rounding off the team is RCR Infrastructure, a
listed company employing more than 3000 staff
that is a leading provider of technical facilities
management services with a strong background in
working at remote sites.
BAE’s solution will focus heavily on partnerships
with SMEs and maintaining Australian content in its
bid given almost all of the technology in the JORN
has been developed locally, with Wynd noting that
the company’s previous experiences with SMEs
have been really positive. The open architecture of
the software upgrades in Phase 6 means SMEs can
plug in later even if not part of the current team, with
BAE prepared to train them on how to interact with
that open architecture.
BAE also partnered with universities offering
scholarships and research programs to ensure a
steady stream of Australian graduates able to join
its team if it wins. The company’s work in JORN is
already allowing it to take on five interns annually,
and expects to need up to 60 graduates if it wins
the bid. Its OTHR export business, which has seen
it export technology sanctioned by Defence to Brazil
and the United States, already helps it retain a core
of 20 engineers.
Lockheed Martin’s involvement in the JORN started
in the late 1990s, with the company taking over as
prime integrator and designer of system in 1997.
According to Neale Prescott, Director of Business
Development at Lockheed Martin Australia, the
company designed, built and fielded the two
radars at Longreach and Laverton which became
operational in 2003.
Prescott told APDR that Lockheed-Martin is
unique in that it is the turnkey provider for the
JORN, having designed, built, delivered, upgraded
and operated the two radars. It now maintains a
workforce of 300 people in Adelaide working on the
JORN, having moved its operations from Melbourne
since the two radars were delivered to the RAAF.
Another 200 personnel are involved in supporting
Since both radars have become operational
Lockheed-Martin has also been involved in a series
of upgrades to do with communications between
the radars and the JCC in Adelaide, as well as
upgrades to obsolete components and components
introducing new algorithms to the software. These
have been done by its development team in South
Australia in conjunction with Defence and also BAE.
For the Phase 6 upgrades Lockheed-Martin has
also carried out a significant amount of R&D effort
as part of the preliminary work as well as to develop
an Australian supply chain. Prescott told APDR that
the company foresees the requirement to replace
the receivers on the JORN with more modern more
capable ones will be a large production activity,
and has partnered with South Australia’s Fine
Tech Electronic Solutions to prepare representative
receiver equipment as part of its bid.
In addition, Lockheed-Martin’s R& D work has
also looked at what it says will operate OTHR in a
different way in trying to track different targets and
also deal with changes in the upper ionosphere at
different times of the day.
Lockheed-Martin has also emphasised the
local content of its bid, noting that its design
team, maintenance organization and sustainment
activities are all in Australia. In addition to Fine
Tech, it has been able to take advantage of
companies in the medical sector and those
specialising in advanced machinery control spaces
to manufacture components.
To sum up, Prescott has said that the “huge focus
is about reducing risk, increasing the technology
performance and increasing relevance of OTHR” in
its bid. The company has also applied for licences to
export some components of OTHR, and that some
equipment has already been sold to US and some
other markets, sanctioned by Defence.
That face that both bids have consciously decided
to use Australian industry as a significant part
of their respective bids serves to emphasize the
strategic importance of the JORN to Australia
and our over whelming sovereign ownership of the
system. That there are export markets keen on
learning and acquiring the technology speaks very
well for the work Australia has done in OTHR, and
regardless of who gets the contract to continue with
Phase 6, Australia as a whole would win.
An aerial view of a Jindalee Operational Radar Network(JORN) transmitter site at Harts Range, Alice Springs.
Credit: CoA / Sonja Canty
24/02/2017 2:50 PM
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