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Lockheed Subsidiary Exhibits Data Sharing Capability Among F-22, F-35 Jets, U-2 Aircraft

Project Hydra
Project Hydra

Lockheed Martin's Skunk Works subsidiary demonstrated communications between six fifth-generation fighter jet and one reconnaissance aircraft during a test with the U.S. Air Force and the Missile Defense Agency.

The flight test titled Project Hydra had five F-35s, one U-2 and and one F-22 aircraft link with each other to share data and build real time situational awareness for ground-based operators, the company said Monday.

The U-2 Dragon Lady carried an open systems gateway payload to establish a link between the F-22 and the F-35s via intra-flight and multifunction advanced data links.

Nellis Air Force Base's Shadow Operations Center and the California-based Common Mission Control Center received the gathered data during the demonstration.

“Project Hydra marks the first time that bi-directional communications were established between 5th Generation aircraft in-flight while also sharing operational and sensor data down to ground operators for real-time capability,” said Jeff Babione, vice president and general manager at Lockheed Martin Skunk Works.

Line-of-sight and beyond line-of-sight data link technologies allow the U-2 to share data directly to command and control nodes across the globe.

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Written by Nichols Martin

a staff writer at Executive Mosaic, produces articles on the federal government's technology and business interests. The coverage of these articles include government contracting, cybersecurity, information technology, health care and national security.

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