The US Air Force Space and Missile Command has awarded Northrop Grumman Mission System sector a contract to define the requirements needed to build a communication network for military, intelligence and space agencies. The Transformational Communications MILSATCOM (TCM) network, which will be based on a single overarching communications architecture, will transform the way the Pentagon conducts its military operations.

The TMC program is a communication overhaul initiative driven by increasing bandwidth demands and represents a step toward the government’s goal of developing a space-based and ground communications and networking infrastructure. This network will have the flexibility to allow seamless information sharing among all command, control, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance users. The TCM will also link existing Department of Defense, civilian and intelligence community networks to provide the warfighter with on-demand communications services. The contract value is $3 M over six months, with options that would increase its total cumulative value to $9 M. The Air Force awarded two additional parallel contracts to other contractors and plans to award to one prime contractor a subsequent development program. “We view this award as an opportunity to define the requirements to remove bandwidth constraints across defense, civilian and intelligence community operations,” said Barry Rhine, president, Defense Mission Systems, Northrop Grumman Mission Systems. “Our network development expertise will be combined with the unique capabilities of our subcontractors to ensure the TCM network requirements define the seamless interoperability, availability, reliability and secure information transport standards for future networks.” Northrop Grumman will work with the Space and Missile Command’s MILSATCOM Joint Program Office to define requirements for the research and development phase of the TCM network program, which will expand the military’s network capability and interoperability between systems. “Through this contract, we will enhance our role as the government’s trusted partner in support of network-centric systems,” said Martin Amen, senior director, Space and Communications Systems, Northrop Grumman Mission Systems. “We structured our team to offer the best available national resources to help the government evolve the TCM network architecture.” Work will be performed at Northrop Grumman Mission systems facilities in McLean, VA, Colorado Springs, CO and El Segundo, CA. Northrop Grumman teammates include Harris Corp., Melbourne, FL; Computer Sciences Corp., El Segundo, CA; FCI, Chantilly, VA; Agile Communications, Rancho Cucamonga, CA; L-3 Communications, New York, NY; NuParadigm, Chesterfield, MO; SI International, Reston, VA; SPARTA, Lake Forest, CA; Verzion Federal, Arlington, VA; and RT Logic, Colorado Springs, CO.