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Innovative Mission Support Models
Mission Support has multiple definitions, from the traditional — providing support to products built by your company — to the larger scale of providing support to other companies' products. At Raytheon, Mission Support is more than product support. Raytheon enables its customers' mission success by partnering with them to predict needs, sense potential problems, and proactively respond with integrated solutions, delivering technology and support that enable them to complete their objectives with absolute confidence.

Raytheon's Mission Support vision is to ensure mission success for our customers by using Raytheon-government partnerships for a full range of Mission Support activities:
  • Providing precise information about location, configuration and condition of each Raytheon system to warfighters and combat support providers at all levels
  • Sensing increased demands and responding seamlessly with accelerated delivery of new production, or with reduced repair turnaround cycles for systems in service
  • Monitoring and analyzing performance data throughout the networked process and producing tailored support packages designed to deliver continuous improvement
  • Adapting and innovating effective support solutions that reduce total cost of ownership

Beyond Product Support
Traditional Mission Support activities at Raytheon include maintenance and repair of customer-owned assets, including inventory and test equipment, as well as logistics services that include training; supply support, including spares and repair parts; technical data; and field service support. Additional services include configuration and management, as well as reliability, maintainability, system safety and supportability. Other types of traditional Mission Support work include:
  • In-service engineering, including:
    • Flight/ground test and support
    • Diminishing manufacturing sources
    • and supplier management
    • Simulations
  • Asset/inventory management
  • "Breakback" — moving responsibility for procuring all missile components back from the government to the contractor
  • "Replacement-in-kind" and credit programs
    • Refurbishment and resale of excess U.S. military inventory with credit for U.S. government purchase of more current production missiles
Raytheon has many successful programs that provide traditional Mission Support, and the company is now looking beyond what is required and coming up with innovative ways to fulfill our customers' Mission Support needs.

Cost-Effective Target Simulation
Implementing the armed services' requirements for "live" firing of missiles for test and training purposes can be difficult and expensive. Traditionally, these firings involved static targets of the old Soviet Bloc nature, such as the T-72 tank or SA-6 Gainful. These are real targets, and in some cases are very expensive to acquire and maintain. Acquiring a Russian tank could cost more than $3 million; destroying one of these is cost-prohibitive.

On today's battlefield, U.S. and coalition warfighters are engaging an asymmetric enemy with traditional military vehicles replaced by common commercial trucks and sport utility vehicles. These vehicles travel at speeds greater than 70 miles per hour, are highly maneuverable, and can easily assimilate with other local traffic. This makes acquiring, tracking, engaging and destroying these enemy targets highly difficult.

Raytheon developed an innovative means of providing a cost-effective, remotely controlled vehicle that can be configured to represent various traditional military targets or to represent the non-traditional types seen on today's battlefield (see figure above). The result: a remote-controlled vehicle configured as an enemy tank costing approximately $35,000, versus millions for an actual tank.

Another of Raytheon's approaches to Mission Support is how it packages Mission Support services for its customers. In the traditional approach, Mission Support efforts are conducted by a single program within a product line. Instead, Raytheon takes advantage of the knowledge and experience found in programs and product lines throughout the company, maximizing Mission Support while lowering overall cost.

A Family of Products and Systems
The Raytheon Partnering in Defense (RaPID) program is one example where the individual support efforts of a family of systems (AMRAAM, Maverick, and Paveway™) are combined into a single support contract. By eliminating duplicate tasks in the independent program efforts, an initial cost reduction of more than 13 percent was achieved. The customer's future cost objective is for a 30 percent cost reduction; discussions are now underway to provide a consolidated maintenance facility for a family of Raytheon products used by this international customer.

A Family of Customers
On Standard Missile-1, the approach of combining a family of international customers of a single Raytheon product was used. Full-service support of the products in 10 countries were integrated into a single contract. This resulted in significant cost savings for the U.S. government as well as for the individual countries.

These initial efforts in providing innovative Mission Support solutions have been well received by customers, and Raytheon is actively seeking other ways to apply these approaches.

Mark R. Sunday