MITRE's International Operations Program Serves Military Partners Around the Globe

December 2010
Topics: International Relations, Command and Control, Systems Integration/Interoperability, Collaborative Decision Making
MITRE's Defense International Operations program serves the needs of sponsors around the globe with the approval of the U.S. government.
U.S. soldiers

Initiatives involving coalition forces are an increasingly important aspect of military and peacekeeping operations. To better serve our nation's allies, whether individual countries or organizations such as the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), MITRE has maintained a significant international presence for more than four decades, serving military partners around the world. (We also work with civil aviation agencies worldwide through MITRE's Center for Advanced Aviation System Development, which is sponsored by the Federal Aviation Administration.)

MITRE's Defense International Operations program provides the link between our corporation and other nations for programs related to national defense and security. For example, we've contributed technical expertise and systems engineering to the adoption of the Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) by over a dozen countries. This ensures the sharing of a system vital in allied operations from the Gulf War to the Balkans to present-day conflicts.

Overall, we've collaborated with more than 40 countries on projects focused on all aspects of military command and control. We currently have more than 100 professional staff at 10 international sites, providing on-site guidance and expertise to our customers.

Because many of our allies face similar challenges to the U.S. military, our Defense International Operations program also serves as a clearinghouse to foster collaboration for common needs. Staff members throughout the company consult on areas in which their sponsors' missions overlap. The NATO Air Command and Control System Management Agency (NACMA), which promotes interoperability among NATO member nations, is one such example.

These interactions help MITRE provide better value to our sponsors by improving interoperability of command and control systems and by reducing cost. Because of MITRE's special role managing federally funded research and development centers for the U.S. government, all foreign governments wishing to use our services must first develop a Foreign Military Sales Case.

A Focus on Systems Engineering and Interoperability

In the U.S., our defense work spans a wide spectrum of sponsors, including the Department of Defense and all its military services, agencies, and other members of the national security community. Similarly, for our nation's allies, we apply our expertise to assist customers in multiple technical areas, from helping Iraq develop an air modernization plan to providing assistance for a next-generation air defense system for Japan. Our primary emphasis is on enterprise engineering and technology awareness.

To aid them in their international military operations, we work hard to ensure effective interoperability among their airborne and ground systems. We also blend our company's technical expertise with wide organizational and programmatic experience. This lets us develop custom solutions for foreign countries, while also taking advantage of what we've learned serving our sponsors in the U.S.

As a trusted advisor to the U.S. military, we provide systems engineering, test and evaluation, prototype developments, and interoperability guidance. The programs below represent just a handful of the groundbreaking command and control systems and supporting technologies that MITRE has played a major part in developing. Many of them have impact for our allies as well.

  • AWACS/AEW&C (Airborne Warning and Control System/Airborne Early Warning & Control)
  • GPS (Global Positioning System)
  • NCW (Network Centric Warfare for Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines)
  • BMEWS (Ballistic Missile Early Warning System)
  • Link 16 (Tactical Data Link System)
  • GCCS (Global Command and Control System)

By serving the needs of sponsors around the globe with the approval of the U.S. government, MITRE's Defense International Operations program helps solve the many interoperability, command and control, communications, and information technology challenges facing our nation's coalition partners.

—by Cheryl B. Scaparrotta

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