Marine Corps Embedded Platform Logistic System on Track for July Delivery, Nine Months After Contract Award
ORLANDO, FL, March 20th, 2008 -- A critical design review by the U.S. Marine Corps earlier this month confirmed that the Embedded Platform Logistics System is on track for delivery this summer - just nine months after contract award. The integrated system of on-board sensors, computers and displays will monitor the status of three classes of vehicles that are essential for Marine Corps combat readiness.
"The Marines are fighting in a tough environment right now, and it's challenging for them to keep their equipment properly maintained," explained Tom McLeod of Lockheed Martin Simulation, Training & Support. "They really see EPLS as a way to improve processes, and we see the system as a way to support them as they go into harm's way."
Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) is designing and developing EPLS under a $144.8 million contract awarded in September 2007. Once system testing is concluded in July, the company will move forward with the production of sensors and related systems and begin outfitting more than 7,000 Marine Corps vehicles. Under the current contract, EPLS will be installed on Light Armored Vehicles (LAV), Medium Tactical Trucks and Amphibious Assault Vehicles. The system is being designed to be flexible enough to expand to other Marine Corps vehicles in the future.
The Marine Corps mantra: "Improvise, adapt, overcome," is at the heart of EPLS and the LAV is a perfect example of why EPLS is important for Marines. The mobility and firepower of the LAV has been essential to the Corps' dangerous mission in Iraq. But, the gearboxes that power the eight-wheeled vehicle sometimes overheat in the blistering desert terrain, potentially stranding the crew in hostile territory. "Without EPLS, they have to literally stop to see if the gearboxes are hot," said Ralph Rolape of Lockheed Martin Simulation, Training & Support.
EPLS promises to be a new and powerful system for the commander who needs to know how much fight remains in his battalion's tactical vehicles, as well as for the Marine who has to venture outside an armored vehicle to check the gearbox.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin employs about 140,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation reported 2007 sales of $41.9 billion.
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