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research and development

DHS Awards 34 Cyber Research and Development Contracts

October 29, 2012
George I. Seffers

The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (DHS S&T) has awarded 34 contracts to 29 academic and research organizations for research and development of solutions to cyber security challenges. The contracts were awarded by the DHS S&T Cyber Security Division (CSD) under Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) 11-02 which solicited proposals in 14 technical topic areas aimed at improving security in federal networks and across the Internet while developing new and enhanced technologies for detecting, preventing and responding to cyber attacks on the nation’s critical information infrastructure. Four of these contracts include co-funding from international partners ­ two from the United Kingdom and two from Australia. Negotiations are currently underway for additional international co-funding from partner agencies in Canada, Sweden and The Netherlands.

Managing Change in the
 Intelligence Community

October 1, 2012
By Max Cacas

A new computing architecture emphasizes shared resources.

The nation’s intelligence community has embarked on a path toward a common computer desktop and a cloud computing environment designed to facilitate both timely sharing of information and cost savings. The implementation could result in budget savings of 20 to 25 percent over existing information technology spending within six years, but the ramifications could include large cultural changes that result both in lost jobs and business for industry partners.

Al Tarasiuk, chief intelligence officer for the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), explains that the changes will be difficult. Agency employees, and the vendors who help operate and manage information technology for the 17 agencies composing the nation’s intelligence apparatus, will feel the effects of the cost cuts.

“Right now, technology is not our biggest risk. The culture change is our biggest risk, and that extends to our industry partners. We have a lot of industry employed in the community through service contracts and other things. They could help, or they could choose not to help,” Tarasiuk emphasizes, candidly describing the pivotal role of these firms in a transition that could spell the loss of both business and jobs. “They know, and I’ve been very open with them, that we’re not going to need the pool of resources of people that we have today to manage what we have in the future.”

Writing
 a New Spy School
 Syllabus

October 1, 2012
By Max Cacas

The National Intelligence University prepares for its fifth decade with a shift in focus and a change in venue.

The National Intelligence University, which provides advanced training to U.S. intelligence professionals, is transitioning from an institution primarily focused on the U.S. Defense Department to one serving the entire intelligence community. This reflects the new emphasis toward sharing and collaboration within the nation's intelligence apparatus.

To make the change a reality, National Intelligence University (NIU) leaders are rethinking and expanding the educational programs the institution offers. Plans also are underway to relocate the university to its own new campus in the very near future—in part to bolster its perception as an intelligence community strategic resource.

Dr. David R. Ellison, president of the NIU, says that the change began with the appointment of James Clapper as the director of National Intelligence in 2010. “Director Clapper recognized that if we were going to have a National Intelligence University in the intelligence community, the best place to start was with an accredited institution that had already achieved success in an academic area,” Ellison explains. He adds that Clapper went on to draft a memorandum to then-Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, defining education as a force multiplier and a tool that must be used to the advantage of the entire intelligence community.

“What he envisioned was that the then-National Intelligence College would become the National Intelligence University, and it would provide accredited education, academic research and academic outreach to the intelligence community as a whole,” Ellison points out.

The Outlook for CBRN Defense

September 21, 2012
By Rita Boland

The U.S. Defense Department has some hard decisions to make regarding where and how to optimize future research to counter chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) weapons. A new report outlines the challenges that military officials must tackle with department and other partners, warning that the amorphous nature of threats limits the ability to identify or mitigate them all individually.

Excet to Research and Develop Chemical Detection Technology

July 27, 2012
By George Seffers

Excet Incorporated, Springfield, Virginia, was awarded a $7,793,502 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the research and development services in support of technology that detect chemical and biological agents. The U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

Two Firms to Compete for Research and Development Task Orders

July 2, 2012
By George Seffers

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), Albuquerque, New Mexico, and Advanced Technology International, Anderson, South Carolina, are each being awarded an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award contract for engineering services located worldwide. The maximum dollar value, including the base period and two option years, for all contracts combined is $45 million. The work to be performed provides for engineering services such as research, development, test and evaluation support, development of designs and concepts and prototypes, development of test plans, test data collection and analysis, project/program planning, project management, development and prototype of equipment/components with performance specifications and metrics for acquisition, preparation of technical reports and manuals, users training, requirement and acquisition documentation, administrative support, and assessment and analytical services. SAIC is being awarded task order 0001 at $184,256 for project support and operational assessment related tasks for the collaborative coalition collection environment joint capability technology demonstration at Camp Smith, Hawaii. These two contractors may compete for task orders under the terms and conditions of the awarded contract. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Specialty Center Acquisitions, Port Hueneme, California, is the contracting activity.

DARPA Awards $85 Million to Johns Hopkins University

February 7, 2012
By George Seffers

Johns Hopkins University, Laurel, Maryland, is being awarded an up to $85 million indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, task order contract to provide for advanced research, development, and engineering support technology programs for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, the contracting activity.

BAE Awarded Pulsed Power Research and Development Contract

December 12, 2011
By George Seffers

BAE Systems, Land and Armaments Division, Minneapolis, Minnesota, is being awarded an $11,658,980 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for research and development activities associated with Integrated Power Systems power load modules design whose applications include pulsed power loads for future surface combatants. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, D.C., is the contracting activity.

Properly Equipping The Force

November 2010
By Rita Boland, SIGNAL Magazine

The U.S. Army’s Program Executive Office Soldier is working with a focused fervor to carry out its responsibility to refine the development of and supply virtually every piece of equipment soldiers wear or carry. As troops engage in persistent conflicts around the globe, they require a new set of technologies to achieve their missions. To ensure victory on the battlefield, these tools must make forces more lethal, survivable, sustainable and agile. Office personnel are working to ensure they do just that, whether the situation calls for a new uniform or a state-of-the-art technical device.

Aegis Technologies Group to Develop Waveform Scene Projector

July 21, 2010
By George Seffers

Aegis Technologies Group, Inc., Huntsville, Alabama, was recently awarded an $8 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to develop a reconfigurable arbitrary-waveform scene projector under the "OSD, Test Resource Management Center Multispectral Test" program.  U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Contracting Center, Aberdeen Installation Contracting Division, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

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