Lockheed Martin & Microsoft announce landmark agreement on classified cloud, advanced technologies for Department of Defense
Lockheed Martin & Microsoft announced a landmark expansion of their strategic relationship to help power the next generation of technology for the Department of Defense (DOD).
The game-changing agreement will span four critical areas for the DOD:
- Classified Cloud Innovations: Microsoft’s latest secure framework will make Lockheed Martin the first non-government entity to independently operate inside the Microsoft Azure Government Secret cloud ushering in a new era of cloud opportunities for industry.
- Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning (AI/ML), Modeling and Simulation Capabilities: Lockheed Martin and Microsoft have entered a two-year collaborative research and development (R&D) program that will advance AI/ML and modeling and simulation capabilities for the DOD.
- MIL® Programs: The R&D agreement also expands the companies’ existing collaboration to deliver advanced networking and secure 5G capabilities at the tactical edge.
- Digital Transformation: Microsoft Azure will power Lockheed Martin’s digital transformation journey, accelerating enterprise-wide productivity gains to deliver innovation at scale, enhance choice and flexibility, and create the next generation of defense technologies.
Yvonne Hodge, senior vice president, Enterprise Business and Digital Transformation, and chief information officer, Lockheed Martin said “Through this historic agreement, Lockheed Martin and Microsoft are blazing a new path in classified cloud, artificial intelligence, and 5G.MIL® capabilities for the Department of Defense. We are creating faster, safer, and more affordable 21st Century Security solutions that infuse immersive experiences and other advanced commercial technologies into the most capable defense systems. We are confident this unrivaled combination of capabilities will help keep our customers ahead of new threats and challenges.”
Jason Zander, executive vice president, Strategic Missions and Technologies, Microsoft said “Our national security leaders need an unassailable information advantage, which is why we’re bringing the power of the hyperscale cloud to accelerate their national security missions. In partnership with Lockheed Martin, we’re demonstrating how the defense industrial base can bring classified data into the cloud securely while bringing advanced 5G connectivity, critical data processing and analysis, and immersive experiences to the edge to support decision- making where it’s needed, when it’s needed. Lockheed Martin is a valued partner in this effort, and we’ll continue to innovate and explore the art of the possible to support national security.”
Classified Cloud Innovations
Lockheed Martin is the first defense industrial base member to use Microsoft’s newest National Industrial Security Program (NISP) framework for air-gapped clouds after a year-long pilot. Work on developing the classified and unclassified cloud environments is already underway, with expectations for the project to be operational in 2023.
Microsoft’s first-of-its-kind technology will allow Lockheed Martin to dynamically scale IT demands under authorized guidance and directly operate mission workloads inside Azure Government Secret, including highly restricted special programs.
This allows Lockheed Martin to:
- Modernize its legacy on-premises classified systems to owned-and-operated Azure Government Secret cloud tenants
- Bolster cybersecurity reporting and compliance monitoring to near real-time.
- Quickly create authorized mission workloads
- Improve enterprise IT and research and development capabilities
- Expand corporate efficiencies
- Autonomously host enterprise cloud management, centralized collaboration, and
- Provide governance at scale.
AI/ML, Modeling and Simulation Capabilities
Through this agreement, Lockheed Martin will partner with Microsoft to build on Microsoft’s advanced gaming, exercising, modeling and simulation (GEMS) and emulation solutions to bring military planning and coordination through immersive environments. Using GEMS technology, Lockheed Martin and its customers can test military platforms and technologies that power joint all-domain operations on a digital platform. Such capabilities have the potential to cut costs for the DOD and minimize risk to service members by providing a digital alternative for some military exercises.
Using Microsoft Azure solutions and Lockheed Martin’s 5G.MIL technologies, the companies will continue to develop secure, resilient communication systems for that are interoperable with and seamlessly link to existing DOD networks. Key developments include a tactical 5G core, management and orchestration of applications and networks at scale and cloud-native security. The companies will also advance space domain connectivity for austere, infrastructure-light environments.
Advancing Lockheed Martin’s Digital Transformation
With Azure as a foundation, Lockheed Martin will advance its business and digital transformation called 1LMX. By transforming its end-to-end business processes and systems, Lockheed Martin is creating a model-based enterprise with a fully integrated digital thread throughout the design, build and sustain product life cycle. 1LMX is enhancing the company’s speed, agility, insights and competitiveness as it delivers the next generation of DOD systems. As part of this transformation, Lockheed Martin will become a multi-cloud environment in the unclassified space using Microsoft Azure as the cloud provider.
Lockheed Martin’s adoption of the Azure cloud will deliver unparalleled protection across all devices, clouds, apps and platforms. Microsoft’s industry-leading cybersecurity leverages massive signal depth and diversity of more than 24 trillion signals per day, combined with cutting-edge AI/ML and a global team of security experts.
Lockheed Martin and Microsoft will continue to develop each of the four critical areas and demonstrate a series of progressively more complex capabilities throughout 2023. The capabilities unlocked by this collaboration will apply to a range of defense applications across all domains: land, sea, air, space and cyber.
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