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AUSA 2023: L3Harris, Leidos, MAG Aerospace team up to bid for US Army HADES contest

L3Harris, Leidos, and MAG Aerospace's HADES concept. (L3Harris)

L3Harris, Leidos, and MAG Aerospace announced a joint bid for the US Army's High Accuracy Detection and Exploitation System (HADES) intelligence-gathering aircraft contest on 9 October.

“We have a relationship with both companies from many years working on several different projects for the army,” Todd Kishpaugh, L3Harris' director of business development, told Janes on 11 October on the sidelines of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) 2023 annual conference. “MAG Aerospace, we're already teamed up with them – they are the prime [contractor] on the ATHENA-R [Army Theater Level, High-Altitude Expeditionary Next Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance – Radar] contract… But then with Leidos, we both competed on ATHENA-R, [and] we teamed up together on ATHENA-S [ATHENA – Signals Intelligence] . Out of that, we've grown and understood each other's capabilities where we could leverage their capabilities, especially when you look at their experience with mission management software, with advanced precision and timing, capabilities.”

The technology behind the team's bid is relatively mature, Kishpaugh said, thanks to the company's bids on other US Army programmes, specifically ATHENA-R, the Airborne Reconnaissance and Electronic Warfare System (ARES), and the Airborne Reconnaissance and Target Exploitation Multimission Intelligence System (ARTEMIS) – all of which the army considers interim capabilities for HADES.

“We're also pulling in some other [Foreign Military Sales] programmes that we're currently working on other business platforms. So it's robust technology,” Kishpaugh said. “We're very familiar with integrating this technology, and the aerodynamic outer mould line shapes.”

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