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electronic warfare

New Cryptographic Device Destined for Drones

October 1, 2013
By George I. Seffers

U.S. Navy researchers are developing a state-of-the-art encryption device for integration onto KC-130 tankers and unmanned aerial systems. An existing version of the device is being installed onto B-52 bombers, E-4s, which serve as airborne command centers for the U.S. president and other National Command Authority officials, and E-6s, which are command and control centers for nuclear weapons. The encryption system can be integrated into virtually any platform and offers backward-compatible, software-definable algorithms that can be updated during operations without downtime.

It is that ability to load algorithms without downtime that researchers tout as one of the biggest benefits of the new system. “This is critical for the ability of the warfighter to be able to replace algorithms as they become obsolete. You don’t have to take a platform offline like almost every other crypto out there now,” says Stanley Chincheck, director, Center for High Assurance Computer Systems, Naval Research Laboratory (NRL), Washington, D.C. “You can do that while it is up and running. That is a unique feature that many crypto devices just don’t have.”

Chincheck cannot reveal a lot of details because of security concerns, but KC-130s and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) will receive the next incarnation of the Programmable Embeddable INFOSEC (Information Security) Product (PEIP, pronounced peep). The version under development is known as PEIP III. The other aircraft—B-52s, E-4s and E-6s—are receiving the current version, PEIP II.

Lockheed Martin to Redesign F-35 Electronic Warfare Components

September 13, 2013
George I. Seffers

 
Lockheed Martin Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $149,041,442 fixed-price-incentive-firm modification to a previously awarded advance acquisition contract (N00019-12-C-0004) for the redesign and qualification of replacement F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter Electronic Warfare system components due to current diminishing manufacturing sources. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity.

Georgia Tech to Analyze Jamming Protection

September 12, 2013
George I. Seffers

Georgia Tech Applied Research Corp., Atlanta, Ga., has been awarded a $7,956,371 delivery order (HC1047-05-D-4000-0244) for Army electronic protection to analyze the response of Army systems to advanced jamming and develop mitigation techniques and methods against this jamming. Enterprise Sourcing Group, Offutt Air Force Base, Neb., is the contracting activity.

Booz Allen Hamilton Supports C4 and Electronic Warfare for Saudi Arabia

July 31, 2013
George I. Seffers

Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., McLean, Va., is being awarded a $21,743,595 modification (P00009) under previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00189-12-C-Z064) to provide support services in the areas of training and education; engineering; program and financial management; plans and programs; communications, command, control, computers and intelligence and electronic warfare; naval operation; manpower and personnel management; technical support; logistic and supply; English language training; special studies and management support services for the Royal Saudi Naval Forces associated with the Saudi Naval Support Program requirements in the United States and Saudi Arabia. Work will be performed in Saudi Arabia, and McLean, Va. The Naval Supply Systems Command Fleet Logistics Center, Norfolk, Philadelphia Office, Philadelphia, Pa., is the contracting activity. 

Boeing to Provide Next Generation Jammer for EA-18G Growler

July 22, 2013
George I. Seffers

 
The Boeing Co., St. Louis, Mo., is being awarded a $17,001,833 cost-plus-incentive-fee, cost-plus-fixed-fee delivery order (#2049) against a previously issued Basic Ordering Agreement (N00019-11-G-0001) for phase I of the next generation jammer (NGJ) pod hardware integration in support of the EA-18G aircraft. The phase I hardware integration will ensure the development, preparation and delivery of the aircraft modification design is suitable for the technology development stage of the NGJ pod program. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. 

Electronic Warfare Tool Enters Engineering and Manufacturing Development Phase

July 9, 2013

The U.S. Army is creating a software tool that will enable soldiers to coordinate and synchronize electronic warfare operations across the electromagnetic battlefield. The Electronic Warfare Planning and Management Tool (EWPMT) will feature 22 distinct functions, including deconflicting offensive, defensive and friendly signals as well as integrating intelligence and terrain data. As part of the Army’s long-term plan for the Integrated Electronic Warfare System (IEWS), electronic warfare officers could use the software for pre-mission planning and to identify threats.

EWPMT development is taking place in six phases, and during the third quarter of fiscal year 2015, the first set of software tools will be tested in select units. The tool is scheduled to be fully operational across the Army by the end of fiscal year 2019.

Col. Joseph P. DuPont, USA, project manager, Program Executive Office, Intelligence, Electronic Warfare and Sensors, shared additional information about the EWPMT and the IEWS in a presentation to the AFCEA Aberdeen Chapter in November 2012 and in an article in SIGNAL Magazine in April.

Spectrum Management System Deploying to Afghanistan

July 11, 2013
By George I. Seffers

The U.S. Army is currently delivering a new and improved Coalition Joint Spectrum Management and Planning Tool (CJSMPT) to divisions scheduled for deployment in Afghanistan. The software automates the spectrum management process, dramatically reducing the amount of time and paperwork associated with spectrum allocation and mission planning in a tactical environment.

For operational security reasons, Army officials cannot reveal exactly which divisions will be receiving the systems or when, but for the next few months, they will be working to get the system out to Afghanistan.

Warfighters are continually confronted with an increasingly crowded radio spectrum—too many devices transmitting on a limited range of frequencies and interfering with one another. Poor spectrum availability can have a devastating effect on operations, and spectrum management normally is a complex and time-consuming process involving frequency access requests that must be approved at multiple levels. “There’s a lot of paperwork associated with the spectrum management process. There are thousands of these [requests] that have to be prepared, submitted, received and reconciled down at the brigade level. Normally, this could take days or even weeks in preparation for a mission or deployment, and CJSMPT can do this in a matter of hours. It provides automation to the spectrum manager to reduce the complexity of his tasks,” says Bob Shields, chief of the Spectrum Analysis and Frequency Management Branch, Space and Terrestrial Communications Directorate, U.S. Army Communications-Electronic Research, Development and Engineering Center (CERDEC), Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.

Sotera to Support Electronic Warfare

July 3, 2013
George I. Seffers

Sotera Defense Systems, Herndon, Va., was awarded an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, firm-fixed-price contract with a maximum value of $97,850,000 for design, build, integration testing and delivery services in support of the electronic warfare planning and management tool. The Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., is the contracting activity. 

A Joint Environment Changes Everything

July 1, 2013
By Max Cacas

Rear Adm. Robert Day Jr., USCG, assistant U.S. Coast Guard commandant for command, control, communications and information technology, sees the Joint Information Environment as an opportunity to resolve some of the most pressing information technology problems in the years to come as he faces a future with more challenges and fewer resources. He says a military-wide common operating environment will establish “enterprisewide mandates that programs cannot ignore.”

The admiral told the recent AFCEA Solutions Series–George Mason University Symposium, “Critical Issues in C4I,” the Joint Information Environment (JIE) will allow for more efficient system configurations and facilitate consolidation of the Coast Guard’s information technology work force. As the director of the U.S. Coast Guard Cyber Command, he also is mindful that the JIE will improve his ability to control what devices are attached to the network, giving him, for example, the opportunity to quickly detect and order the removal of an unauthorized USB thumb drive inserted into a secure network computer.

Hewing to the reality of doing more with less, the admiral also told conference attendees that within the next eight months, the Coast Guard is expected to move to the U.S. Defense Department’s enterprise email system. Adm. Day stated that even though this move initially may cost more in some cases, the long-term benefits to the service will mitigate and justify some of those costs. In addition, acknowledging the futility of reinventing the wheel, he noted that the Coast Guard is adopting the U.S. Air Force’s Virtual Flight Bag, which replaces nearly 300 pounds of printed manuals and charts carried aboard aircraft by crews. Apple iPads will be loaded with digital copies of the same material.

URS to Support Spectrum Electronic Warfare Department in Afghanistan, Iraq and Australia

June 5, 2013
George I. Seffers

URS Federal Technical Services Inc., Germantown, Md., is being awarded a maximum value $18,788,706 fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for engineering, technical and programmatic support for the Spectrum Electronic Warfare Department, which primarily focuses on direct support of airborne electronic defense, airborne electronic attack, maritime, and expeditionary divisions. Tasks include research and development support; system engineering and process engineering; modeling, simulation, and analysis; prototyping, pre-production, model-making and fabrication support; system design documentation and technical data support; software engineering, development, programming and network support; reliability, maintainability and availability; human factors, performance and usability engineering; system safety engineering; configuration management; quality assurance; interoperability, test and evaluation, trials; logistics; supply and provisioning; training; and program support. This contract includes foreign military sales to Afghanistan, Iraq and Australia. The Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane, Ind., is the contracting activity.  

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