ORLANDO, Fla., Feb. 23 (UPI) -- Integration testing has begun on an air defense system battle manager that organizes and combines sensors and missile launchers into one element.
The Medium Extended Air Defense System battle manager is the third completed and is being evaluated by Lockheed Martin in Huntsville, Ala., before being a missile intercept test next year.
"Following the successful first MEADS flight test in November, the team continues to evolve MEADS' battle management software and the plug-and-fight network, demonstrating coverage and flexibility that other systems cannot provide, including a 360-degree defense that protects our warfighters against next-generation threats," said MEADS International President David Berganini.
MEADS International is a joint venture of Lockheed Martin and MBDA of Germany and Italy.
The missile defense system they are developing combines the U.S. Patriot-3 missile with advanced radars. The company says its system will defend an area eight times greater than that of other systems.
Two earlier battle managers are currently supporting system testing in Italy and the United States.