You don’t hear much old-school military radio traffic anymore. Except for a few front-line radio nets, most radio chatter has been replaced by the endless, silent interplay of text messages, emails and Web postings. With that shift, we have lost an entire dialect of martial radio-speak.
The Defense Department is putting crucial emphasis on fresh ideas from private industry as it shapes the task of better managing the electromagnetic spectrum needed to assemble mission-tailored capabilities to meet military leaders’ needs—all the while coming under federal pressure to possibly renounce valuable wireless frequencies for commercial use.
U.S. Defense Department officials intend to complete a departmentwide spectrum strategy road map this month, which will make more frequencies available to warfighters, provide greater flexibility—especially for international operations—and ultimately allow warfighters to conduct their missions more effectively. At the same time, however, some are suggesting a nationwide strategy to allow for more innovative and effective spectrum management and sharing across government and industry.
The next big breakthrough to affect the U.S. military might come from a different country or industry altogether, and discovering it in emerging stages could provide advantages. Developers with the Defense Department have launched a pilot system that aims to find these potential game changers before they become full-blown trends. Along the way, the research will explore what criteria are necessary to perform such a task.
The U.S. Navy submarine force is moving to use a commercial geospatial information product to provide an integrated data picture to its crew members. The undersea fleet is striving to implement Google Earth as a common geospatial foundation across all systems aboard its submarines.
With the war in Afghanistan winding down, the U.S. Defense Department’s rapid deployment office, which specializes in identifying, developing and quickly fielding game-changing technologies, now will take a more long-term approach. Slightly stretching out the process will offer more flexibility to procure the best possible systems, will present more opportunities for interagency and international cooperation and may cut costs.
The complexities of the U.S. Army’s networks and spectrum allocation processes interfere with the need to reassign units to different tasks, creating major delays and presenting serious challenges.
U.S. Army engineers and scientists are working to eventually equip dismounted soldiers with wearable computers such as Google Glass. The up-and-coming wearables technology is being touted by officials as one of the next game-changers for warriors.
Exelis Incorporated Radar, Reconnaissance and Acoustic Systems, Van Nuys, California, has been awarded a $9,647,241 firm-fixed- price contract for a Ground Control Approach System (GCA). This effort is a new program in support of a foreign military sales case for the Saudi Arabian National Guard. This action will provide a GCA for installation at a Khasham Al An Airbase.
Goodrich Corporation, Westford, Massachusetts, has been awarded an $11 million firm-fixed-price contract for Pakistan DB-110 sustainment effort that includes upgrade capabilities, spare and support equipment. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition, and is 100 percent foreign military sales for Pakistan. The Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8620-14-C-4017).
Aurora Flight Sciences Corporation, Manassas, Virginia, has been awarded a $10,457,663 modification (P00003) exercising the first option period on a seven-month base contract (HR0011-14-C-0014), with one 16-month option period. The contractor shall provide the personnel, equipment, materials, tools, facilities and program management and technical effort to design, develop, integrate, test and deliver the contractual requirements of the program for building two X-Plane aircraft.
Navmar Applied Sciences Corporation, Warminster, Pennsylvania, is being awarded a $7,958,350 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N68335-12-C-0353) to exercise an option for the procurement of logistic services and mission travel in support of the TigerShark persistent surveillance unmanned aerial system. Work will be performed in Afghanistan (92 percent), and Warminster (8 percent), and is expected to be completed in June 2015.
Miltec Corporation, Huntsville, Alabama, was awarded a $44 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract with options for labor, material, travel for research and development for the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon-Technology Demonstration for Space and Missile Defense Command, with an estimated completion date of June 5, 2019. The Army Space and Missile Defense Command is the contracting activity (W9113M-14-C-0015).
Dell Federal Systems L.P., Round Rock, Texas (91QUZ-07-D-0006, MOD P00019); IBM Corporation, Bethesda, Maryland (W91QUZ-07-D-0007, MOD P00017); Unicom Government Incorporated, Herndon, Virginia (W91QUZ-07-D-0008, MOD P00017); CDW Government LLC, Vernon Hills, Illinois (W91QUZ-07-D-0009, MOD P00022); Iron Bow Technologies LLC, Chantilly, Virginia (W91QUZ-07-D-0010, MOD P00024); and
Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation Aerospace Systems, Redondo Beach, California, has been awarded an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with a maximum ordering dollar amount of $7 million for L-Band Radio Frequency Power Amplifier for the Global Positioning System (GPS) Spacecraft Navigation Payload.
Scientists at the U.S. Army's Research Laboratory have successfully demonstrated information teleportation capabilities in the laboratory using entangled photons.
Hewlett Packard Enterprise Services (HPES), Herndon, Virginia, is being awarded a $138 million modification to a previously awarded contract (N00039-10-D-0010) for the continuity of services contract (CoSC) for Navy Marine Corps Intranet (NMCI). The modification includes increasing the contract ceiling from $5,603,792,250 to $5,741,792,250, and adding an option to extend the period of performance by three months, from July 1, 2014, to Sept. 30, 2014.
SES Government Solutions, McLean Virginia, has been awarded an $8,245,160 firm-fixed-price contract for the purchase of commercial on-orbit transponders to support Ku-band communications for U.S. Africa Command and operations and sustainment support for a base year and four one-year options. Work will be performed at Ramstein Air Base, Germany and the western portion of Africa, and is expected to be complete by Aug. 5, 2019. The Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles Air Force Base, California is the contracting activity (FA8808-14-C-0001).
Spider-Man goes green, and we don’t mean environmentally friendly. How a DARPA project involving gecko-inspired paddles could help humans scale walls.
Alion Science and Technology, Burr Ridge, Illinois (FA8075-14-D-0014); Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus, Ohio (FA8075-14-D-0015); Booz Allen Hamilton, McLean, Virginia (FA8075-14-D-0016); EOIR Technologies Inc., Fredericksburg, Virginia (FA8075-14-D-0017); Georgia Tech Research Institute, Atlanta, Georgia (FA8075-14-D-0018); MacAulay-Brown Inc., Dayton, Ohio (FA807