Telecommunications company Verizon and U.S. aerospace company Lockheed Martin have signed an agreement to collaborate on 5G.MIL technologies that will provide ultra-secure, reliable connections for U.S. Department of Defense systems. The collaboration aims to bring together high-tech platforms into a cohesive network spanning air, land, sea, space, and cyber domains. The strategic relationship agreement also establishes a joint research and development lab framework to prototype, demonstrate and test 5G.MIL technologies, according to Verizon.
"Verizon is at the cutting edge when it comes to building out reliable, high performance 5G Ultra Wideband networks with mobile edge computing capabilities," said Kyle Malady, Chief Technology Officer at Verizon. "Our work with Lockheed Martin will help enable the creation of new and innovative products and technologies, helping DOD leaders achieve the goals laid out in their 5G strategy."
Lockheed Martin and Verizon’s joint 5G demonstration
Earlier this week, Lockheed Martin and Verizon conducted a joint demonstration using a Verizon private 5G network installed at Lockheed Martin Space’s 5G Test Range in Colorado, connected to a Lockheed Martin open mission system processor running mission applications at the Skunk Works Integration Facility and Test Center in Texas. Initial tests demonstrated interoperability between Lockheed Martin’s open tactical gateway solutions and Verizon’s On-Site 5G network technology. Specifically, situational awareness applications receiving Link-16 standard messages were linked to 5G user devices. Verizon’s infrastructure and Lockheed Martin’s open mission system tactical gateway technologies aim to help to address future anticipated requirements for tactical operations.
Lockheed Martin’s 5G.MIL program is described as a robust, 5G-enabled, heterogeneous "network of networks" that integrates military tactical, strategic, and enterprise networks, and leverages existing telecommunication infrastructure technology. 5G.MIL aims to enable interoperability between 5G networks, NextG networks, and operational DOD networks to enable effective and resilient communication across all domains.
"Lockheed Martin’s deep understanding of DOD mission requirements coupled with Verizon’s wireless expertise will truly enable the Joint All-Domain Operations battlespace our customers envision," said Rod Makoske, chief engineer and senior vice president of Engineering and Technology at Lockheed Martin. "Leveraging commercial 5G technologies with military-grade enhancements will let customers field, scale and deploy this technology faster and in more operational environments."