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Lockheed Martin and Red Hat to advance AI for military missions

To advance artificial intelligence (AI) innovation, Lockheed Martin and Red Hat have announced a collaboration at the edge on Lockheed Martin military platforms.

user icon Nastasha Tupas
Wed, 26 Oct 2022
Lockheed Martin and Red Hat to advance AI for military missions
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By applying and standardising AI technologies in geographically constrained environments and adopting the newly announced Red Hat Device Edge, Lockheed Martin is aiming to support US national security missions.

Red Hat Device Edge is the latest product in the Red Hat edge portfolio designed to deliver an enterprise-ready and supported distribution of MicroShift, a lightweight Kubernetes orchestration solution built from the edge capabilities of Red Hat OpenShift, along with an edge-optimised operating system built from Red Hat Enterprise Linux that aims to enable an organisation’s architecture to evolve as its workload strategy changes.

Lockheed Martin and Red Hat are set to equip US military platforms, such as the Stalker unmanned aerial system (UAS), with advanced software that was previously too large and complex for these systems with Red Hat Device Edge.


Driving faster, data-backed decision making, the advanced software is designed to equip small platforms to handle large AI workloads, increasing their capability in the field.

According to Justin Taylor, vice president of artificial intelligence at Lockheed Martin, cutting-edge commercial technology would bolster military capability, which is a key element to uphold national security.

“With Red Hat Device Edge, Lockheed Martin is leading the infusion of cutting-edge commercial technology into military capabilities that deliver advanced solutions to our customers.

“Unlocking these AI technologies can help national security decision-makers stay ahead of adversaries, enabling a safer and more secure world,” Taylor said.

Lockheed Martin used Red Hat Device Edge on a Stalker UAS to demonstrate how AI-enhanced sensing can advance Joint All-Domain Operations, with the Stalker tasked with using onboard sensors and AI to adapt in real time to a threat environment in a recent demonstration.

The Stalker was flying an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) mission to detect a simulated military target. Once the Stalker detected the target emitter, project engineers used Red Hat Device Edge to update the Stalker’s software in-flight.

Managed on platform by Red Hat Device Edge, the new software enabled the Stalker to deploy updated AI-based computer vision capabilities, also known as automated target recognition capabilities.

Stalker provided more useful ISR data for US military decision-makers by being able to more accurately classify the military target as a result, with enhanced situational awareness of the threat environment.

Francis Chow, vice president and general manager, In-Vehicle Operating System and Edge at Red Hat, noted that working in collaboration with Lockheed Martin could help shape technology that “defines a technological era”.

“With Red Hat’s latest solution, Red Hat Device Edge, we’ll be able to work together to change what communications and artificial intelligence looks like in the most space-constrained and far-flung environments, whether remote mountain ranges or beyond the boundaries of Earth’s atmosphere.

Lockheed Martin is at the forefront of global innovation that often defines a technological era,” Chow added.

Lockheed Martin is a key contributor to the MicroShift project, collaborating to help build out the project’s edge capabilities for remote and inaccessible environments.

As part of Lockheed Martin’s 21st Century Security vision to leverage the best commercial technologies for the defence industry, the company plans to continue to innovate using Red Hat Device Edge and edge Kubernetes capabilities for a broader range of applications across all domains: land, sea, air, space and cyber.

Lockheed Martin, Red Hat and other industry collaborators are working on enhancing 5G.MIL capabilities with RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) functionality using Red Hat OpenShift, the industry’s leading Kubernetes platform, to deliver resilient communications for the US Department of Defence.

[Related: Government lays out defence strategy in new federal budget]

Nastasha Tupas

Nastasha Tupas

Nastasha is a Journalist at Momentum Media, she reports extensively across veterans affairs, cyber security and geopolitics in the Indo-Pacific. She is a co-author of a book titled The Stories Women Journalists Tell, published by Penguin Random House. Previously, she was a Content Producer at Verizon Media, a Digital Producer for Yahoo! and Channel 7, a Digital Journalist at Sky News Australia, as well as a Website Manager and Digital Producer at SBS Australia. Nastasha started her career in media as a Video Producer and Digital News Presenter at News Corp Australia.

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