News Briefs

April 18, 2013

The U.S. Army’s 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, is training with Warfighter Information Network–Tactical (WIN-T) Increment 2 capabilities for its upcoming deployment to Afghanistan. The nodes will provide the division’s on-the-move network, delivering situational awareness information and enabling mission command. In addition to connecting ground soldiers, the network allows company commanders in vehicles to receive orders in real time from higher headquarters.

April 12, 2013

NASA and the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory are asking industry for solutions to meet future high-performance space computing needs in the coming decades.

April 2, 2013

The National Institutes of Health is funding the development of a medical instrument that will quickly detect biothreat agents, including anthrax, ricin and botulinum as well as infectious diseases. Scientists at Sandia National Laboratories are creating the first of its kind point-of-care device that could be used in emergency rooms during a bioterrorism incident. To design the device, which will be able to detect a broader range of toxins and bacterial agents than is currently possible, the $4 million project will include comprehensive testing with animal samples.

March 25, 2013

The malware that infiltrated computer systems across South Korea’s banking and television broadcast industries on March 20 shares similarities with the Shamoon program used last year to wipe clean the hard drives of 30,000 Saudi Aramco workstations, according to experts at General Dynamics Fidelis Cybersecurity Solutions. Investigators at the company’s newly-opened cyber forensics laboratory in Columbia, Maryland, say the malware is not a Shamoon variant, but that the two programs share some characteristics.

March 27, 2013

Sandia National Laboratories has signed an umbrella Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with Caterpillar Incorporated that covers multiple projects over the next three years. Though Caterpillar is best known for large construction and mining equipment, the CRADA authorizes work in computer and computational science, information and data analysis, mathematics, engineering science and high-performance computing. Technical categories covered by the agreement include simulation design exploration, advanced analytics, multiphysics engineering modeling and simulation, and high-performance computing.

March 13, 2013

Nominations now are being accepted for the Greater Washington Government Contractor Awards. Presented by the Fairfax County Chamber of Commerce and the Professional Services Council, these awards recognize excellence in several size categories, from companies with an annual revenue of less than $25 million to those with more than $300 million in annual revenue.

March 4, 2013

Despite continued budget crunching, U.S. Defense Department officials are continuing to implement a three-phase plan to equip the department’s 600,000 mobile-device users with secure classified and protected unclassified mobile solutions that leverage commercial products. In conjunction with the Defense Information Systems Agency, the department’s chief information officer is establishing a basic multivendor mobility capability with the Defense Department for assessment. This first phase, which continues through April, deploys voice and data services over a commercial wireless network, and a contract will be awarded for the department’s initial enterprise mobile device management (MDM) and mobile application store (MAS).

February 5, 2013

The Federal Chief Information Officers (CIO) Council has launched the 2013 Information Technology (IT) Job Shadow Day program. For more than a decade, the program has enabled high school students from all across the country to shadow federal IT professionals in their communities for a day. Job shadow events will take place between now and May 1. Federal employees who would like to volunteer can register on the Office of Personnel Management’s MAX.gov website.

January 31, 2013

The U.S. Navy now plans to award the Next Generation Enterprise Network (NGEN) contract(s) for transport and enterprise services in May rather than on February 12, as originally planned, service officials announced The delay is due to the complexities of the NGEN requirements and the need to complete a thorough review of the bids, Navy officials say.

January 30, 2013

The Air Force Space Command expects to be directed to add 1,000 new people, mainly civilians, to its base of about 6,000 cyber professionals for the 2014 fiscal year. According to the U.S. Defense Department blog “Armed With Science,” Gen. William L. Shelton, USAF, who leads Air Force Space Command, said direction for the hires would come from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, fueled by the U.S. Cyber Command.

January 15, 2013
By Maryann Lawlor

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is investing $120 million over the next five years in an energy innovation hub. Called the Critical Materials Institute (CMI) and led by the Ames Laboratory, the hub will accommodate collaboration among scientists exploring advances in the development and commercialization of innovative clean energy technology. The CMI will bring together researchers from academia, the private sector and four DOE national laboratories to find solutions that can be applied to a material’s life cycle, including new ways to access sources of materials and innovative recycling and reuse ideas.

January 9, 2013
By Rita Boland

Researchers at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory and Johns Hopkins University have discovered methods to control folding pathways and enable sequential folding on a millimeter scale using a low-intensity laser beam. Lasers at a low intensity worked as a trigger for tagging applications. Developers are fabricating sheets of millimeter-size structures that serve as battery-free wireless actuators that fold when exposed to a laser operating at eye-safe infrared wavelengths. The metallic structures may respond even to high-powered LED lighting.

December 27, 2012
SIGNAL

The U.S. Army recently announced that it is seeking mature solutions supporting the Vehicle Tactical Router gap to participate in the Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) 14.1 event, scheduled to take place in October - November 2013 at Fort Bliss, Texas, and White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. This marks the first request for proposal (RFP) to support the NIE events. The Army will use the RFP method to seek capability for targeted capability gaps, while also relying on Sources Sought notifications to target vendor solutions for broad capability gaps. The RFP will result in an NIE support contract award.

December 21, 2012
by Max Cacas

The U.S. Navy has given the go ahead for the first shipboard installation of a new tactical communications network designed to replace multiple networks now found on warships. The Consolidated Afloat Network and Enterprise Services (CANES) combines five legacy networks into one integrated network. The first CANES installation will take place onboard the San Diego-based destroyer USS Milius (DDG 69), and the Milestone C acquisition memorandum calls for an initial fielding of 29 CANES units within 23 installations. The system underwent operational tests last September. Eventually, CANES is expected to be deployed on the Navy's fleet of 190 ships and submarines as well as Maritime Operations Centers by 2020.

 

December 13, 2012

A vision-driven robotic arm will enable the precise long-range delivery of a payload weighing up to one pound into difficult-to-reach environments. The capability is being made possible through a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) project that adds depth perception to the range of unmanned aerial hover vehicles’ features. Using stereo vision, the unmanned aerial vehicle can estimate a target’s position relative to the hovering aircraft in real time, and then the system tracks where the payload must be placed and the motion of a robotic arm. Control logic maneuvers the vehicle and directs the robotic arm to engage a designated target and to place the payload.

December 6, 2012
By Max Cacas

To monitor the possible effects of radiation on Americans who were in Japan during the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the U.S. Army Public Health Command has launched the Operation Tomodachi Registry website. The site provides location-based radiation dose estimates for the approximately 70,000 department-affiliated adults and children who were in one of 13 mainland Japan locations at the time of the disaster, which included the release of radiation into the environment. It will serve as a public clearinghouse for information on the U.S. Defense Department's response to the crisis in which U.S.

December 5, 2012

Sandia National Laboratories has created a hiring program that helps wounded warriors get into the work force and develop career-based skills and experience. Under the Wounded Warrior Working Group, Sandia hires qualified applicants for one to three years, which could lead to permanent employment. Executive, technical and veteran mentors are a key component of the program. Applicants can be separated from the service for any length of time. While a college degree is not required, Sandia expects those chosen to participate in the program to pursue higher education while working at the laboratories.

November 21 ,2012
By Maryann Lawlor

The (ISC)2 Foundation’s information security 2013 scholarship program application process will open on January 1, 2013, and it offers a total of $120,000 in awards to women, graduate students, young professionals and faculty. The foundation will award up to two scholarships totaling $40,000 to women pursuing an education in information security. In addition, it will give seed funding for up to eight grants of $3,000 each to assist graduate students conducting special research. One of the foundation’s other undergraduate scholarship winners will receive the Harold F.

November 8, 2012
By Rita Boland

The U.S. Department of State is hosting its first-ever Youth TechCamp in the Pacific region later this month. Coordinated in conjunction with Pasifika Nexus and the University of the South Pacific, Youth TechCamp Fiji will offer six days of training to as many as 300 youths from various Pacific islands. Local and international technology experts from the fields of digital content creation, mobile applications and social activism will participate as well. Organizers aim to enable future leaders from the region to contribute to policy development, encourage local content creation and leverage connection technologies in positive ways.

October 30, 2012

Following the lead set by NASA, the Department of Veterans Affairs and several other federal agencies, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) has posted a solicitation for an enterprisewide Mobile Device Management system and Mobile Application Store (MDM-MAS). As many as 260,000 devices could reach authorized security resources and data initially through the DISA app store, which could eventually expand to support the needs of the entire Defense Department.

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