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NATO Signs the AGS Study Contract

NATO Signs the AGS Study Contract

Remarks by Ambassador Minuto Rizzo, NATO Deputy Secretary General at AGS Study Contract Signing Ceremony. NATO Headquarters, 0915 hours, Thursday, 28 April 2005. Source: NATO, Brussels.

Front left to right: Dag Wilhelmsen (General Manager, NC3 Agency, on behalf of NATO); NATO Deputy Secretary General, Ambassador Minuto Rizzo; Mr. Dossier (Senior Vice President Northop Grumman Integrated Systems, on behalf of TIPS); Tom Enders (Vice President of EADS Defence and Security Systems, will act as a witness). NATO Photo.

Front left to right: Dag Wilhelmsen (General Manager, NC3 Agency, on behalf of NATO); NATO Deputy Secretary General, Ambassador Minuto Rizzo; Mr. Dossier (Senior Vice President Northop Grumman Integrated Systems, on behalf of TIPS); Tom Enders (Vice President of EADS Defence and Security Systems, will act as a witness). NATO Photo.

It is a great pleasure for me to join you here today to mark this important milestone in the life of the Alliance Ground Surveillance programme AGS, as it is known, has been a long-standing requirement for our Alliance. When finally fielded, around 2010, it will provide our military forces a greatly needed stand-off airborne ground surveillance capability, much as the NATO Airborne Early Warning and Control currently provides us with an air surveillance capability today.

The output of this over 20 million euro study effort will provide participating NATO nations with answers to key questions regarding issues, among others, like interoperability; command, control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; and integration of the Transatlantic Co-operative AGS Radar - TCAR sensor onto the AGS manned and unmanned platforms.

With those answers, by the end of this year, we should be ready to move into the more challenging almost half billion euro Design and Development phase

  • At a total cost, estimated to be in the order of 4 billion euros, AGS is the largest acquisition programme in NATO’s history.

I welcome our AGS industrial partners and the National Armaments Directors who have joined us this morning. And I offer a special welcome to General Kujat, the Chairman of the Military Committee and a long time, ardent supporter of AGS. Of course I would like also to welcome the ladies and gentlemen of the press, who will help us record today’s event.

As we do this, I extend my congratulations to the Chairman of the CNAD and our Assistant Secretary General, Mr Marshall Billingslea. I also extend our appreciation to the Chairman of the AGS Steering Committee ? Major General Alberto Notari and Major General Lars Fynbo - the AGS Support Staff Team Leader, as well as their supporting staffs, for their invaluable contributions to this effort.

Could I now call on Mr Alan Doshier, Senior Vice President of Northrop Gumman Integrated Systems and Mr Dag Wilhemsen, General Manager of NATO Command, Control and Consultation Agency, to sign the AGS study contract. Mr Tom Enders, Vice President of European Aeronautical Defence and Space, Defence and Security Systems will join me in witnessing their signatures.

    [After the signatures]

Front left to right: Dag Wilhelmsen (General Manager, NC3 Agency, on behalf of NATO); NATO Deputy Secretary General, Ambassador Minuto Rizzo; Mr. Dossier (Senior Vice President Northop Grumman Integrated Systems, on behalf of TIPS); Tom Enders (Vice President of EADS Defence and Security Systems, will act as a witness). NATO Photo.

Front left to right: Dag Wilhelmsen (General Manager, NC3 Agency, on behalf of NATO); NATO Deputy Secretary General, Ambassador Minuto Rizzo; Mr. Dossier (Senior Vice President Northop Grumman Integrated Systems, on behalf of TIPS); Tom Enders (Vice President of EADS Defence and Security Systems, will act as a witness). NATO Photo.

With these signatures, the Transatlantic Industrial Proposed Solution or TIPS consortium enters into a legally binding contract with NATO to provide the information nations will need to make their decisions on entering into the much more substantial Design and Development phase, the end of this year or the beginning of the next.

For those who have followed AGS over the years, this crucial first contract moves us one step closer to realizing a capability, which will make a significant contribution to our Alliance in general and the new NATO Response Force in particular.

I wish you all the very best in this and future phases, as we move down the road towards fielding a NATO-owned and operated AGS capability for NATO.

  • NATO’s Alliance Ground Surveillance Programme Gains Momentum

This morning, as a result of work done at the twice-annual meeting of NATO’s Conference of National Armaments Directors, NATO signed a 23 million Euro contract with the Transatlantic Industrial Proposed Solution (TIPS) consortium, as a key part of the Alliance Ground Surveillance (AGS) programme.

This crucial, first major contract with NATO’s chosen industrial partner, represents a break-through for the Alliance. It moves NATO, and NATO nations, one step closer in the AGS programme to fielding a state-of-the-art airborne ground surveillance capability. With an estimated cost of 4 billion euros, AGS will be one of the most expensive acquisition programmes ever undertaken by the Alliance, and one of the most sophisticated, technologically.

The goal of AGS is to enable military commanders and decision-makers to have near-real-time radar imagery that is able to spot grounds targets and track them. This will be done through a mix of both.

The contract was signed, in the presence of NATO’s Deputy Secretary General, Ambassador Allessandro Minuto Rizzo and the Chairman of the CNAD, Marshall Billingslea, together with General Harald Kujat, the Chairman of NATO’s Military Committee. Mr Dag Wilhemsen, General Manager of the NATO Command, Control and Consultation Agency, and Mr Alan Doshier, Senior Vice President of Northop Grumman Integrated Systems, on behalf of the TIPS companies, signed the contract. Dr. Tom Enders, Executive Vice President of European Aeronautical Defence and Space (EADS), and CIO of Defence and Security Systems, witnessed the signatures.

The TIPS consortium brings together the transatlantic expertise of Northop Grumman, EADS, Thales, Galileo Avionica, General Dynamics Canada and Indra, to provide NATO with a leading edge Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capability, both manned (Airbus A/321) and unmanned (Global Hawk) air platforms, along with ground stations that will present the data from the AGS core. Interoperable, nationally provided ground surveillance assets work with the core, as part of a system of systems. An initial AGS Operational Capability is expected by 2010.

When the current definition phase effort has been successfully completed, NATO will take to the next stage a 500-million euros Design and Development contract. This is planned for the end of this year, or early in 2006.

 

 


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Directeur de la publication : Joël-François Dumont
Comité de rédaction : Jacques de Lestapis, Hugues Dumont, François de Vries (Bruxelles), Hans-Ulrich Helfer (Suisse), Michael Hellerforth (Allemagne).
Comité militaire : VAE Guy Labouérie (†), GAA François Mermet (2S), CF Patrice Théry (Asie).

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