Assessing Aegis Program Transition to an Open-Architecture Model
RAND NATIONAL DEFENSE RESEARCH INST SANTA MONICA CA
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The Navy s transition from its legacy Aegis business model to its new Integrated Warfare Systems IWS business model1 may introduce new challenges and risks for the fleet and for the enterprise that develops and fields the Aegis weapon system AWS. Under the legacy business model, the AWS used proprietary software operating on military-specification MILSPEC computing hardware. Upgrades to the Aegis combat system ACS were developed every five to six years and fielded only to new-construction ships and those receiving a midlife upgrade.2 Older baselines were upgraded to support additional capabilities, fix computer software errors, and support upgrades to ACS elements. Upgrades or modifications to deployed Aegis systems to support ACS element upgrades put a significant demand on the Aegis technical infrastructure. The new IWS business model will use open-architecture OA software operating on commercial off-the-shelf COTS computing hardware. The IWS model will also involve periodic upgrades to all ships, both new and in-service.
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