The SIGNAL Blog
Northrop Grumman Receives Immigration and Customs Enforcement Infrastructure System Task Order From Department of Homeland Security
Northrop Grumman Corporation has been awarded a task order by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to provide an infrastructure system and commercial off-the-shelf solution for bed space, transportation and detainee location tracking that will significantly increase safety and security, reduce processing time, minimize network and cellular traffic and provide a common interface for DHS agents. The contract has a potential value of $44.35 million if all options are exercised. Under the terms of the task order, Northrop Grumman's Information Technology sector will provide the DHS Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Office of Detention and Removal Operations with an integrated system that will locate and track detainees, reserve detainee bed space among various facilities and manage detainee transportation. Northrop Grumman will provide the infrastructure and integrate this system with other DHS systems and solutions.
The Raven unmanned aerial system (UAS) will be upgraded with a new digital datalink that will quadruple the number of available video channels and improve video quality, relay capability and encryption. The Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center developed the datalink, which has been transitioned to the production line. Until this time, the Raven has used an analog downlink to share video and telemetry information. However, video data that cannot be compressed prior to transmission consumes large amounts of bandwidth, and when the signal weakens, the full-motion video feed degrades. Switching to digital addresses these issues.
The U.S. Air Force has created a new Air Staff directorate-aligned as A10-to strengthen the focus on nuclear enterprise. The Strategic Deterrence and Nuclear Integration Office began operations on November 1. The directorate is the second organizational change officials have implemented to improve nuclear focus. The first involved consolidating nuclear sustainment responsibility in the Air Force Materiel Command at the Nuclear Weapons Center. The Air Force also announced plans for a nuclear-only major command called Air Force Global Strike Command as its future field-operating construct for the nuclear enterprise.
The U.S. Army has halted the Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter program because development costs have almost tripled to $942 million from $359 million. In addition, deliveries were scheduled to begin in 2009 but had been pushed back to 2013. Army officials say they need helicopters now and will re-evaluate the requirements for a reconnaissance helicopter. In the meantime, the service branch will put more effort into the existing Kiowa Warrior fleet. The Army will implement a safety enhancement program to standardize that fleet and improve its effectiveness in combat. The upgrades include improved sensors, weapons systems and survivability equipment.
In another example of how the military community can receive help through military organizations, the U.S. Defense Department has released comprehensive handbook outlining compensation and other benefits service members and their families are entitled to after separating or retiring from the military because of serious injury and illness
Alion Science and Technology Incorporated has received a $12 million contract to provide operational logistics analysis to the Naval Operational Logistics Support Center (NOLSC). Alion will support NOLSC in testing operational logistics concepts and providing system-centric training to deployable units in the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard. Alion will conduct analyses to help address capability, manning, training and budget issues.
Raytheon Company has been awarded a U.S. Department of Homeland Security contract to develop a Stand-Off Warning Against Radiological Materials technology. The contract has a potential value of $2.9 million if all options are exercised.
Members of the U.S. Coast Guard First District command center participated in an experiment simulating a scenario that examined decisions and actions to locate a vessel of interest and prevent a potential terrorist incursion. The Coast Guard worked with Raytheon Company on the experiment and used the company's Mission Profiling process to study the potential for theoretical decision support tools and concepts of operations to improve a Coast Guard district command center's maritime security mission. Several tools and concepts demonstrated potential for further investigation. The exercise was the first joint experiment under a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement signed by Raytheon and the Coast Guard Research and Development Center.
The U.S. Army has taken delivery of equipment of the first increment of the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (WIN-T). This phase of the program builds on the former Joint Network Node network and offers high-capacity secure communications when warfighters are not in transit. Devices include network hubs, management suites and nodes. The 5th Brigade, 2nd Infantry Division Stryker Brigade Combat Team is training with the equipment to prepare for operational tests and evaluations. The second increment of the program will include an initial on-the-move broadband networking capability using satellite and radio links. Fielding of phase-two equipment is scheduled to occur next year.