• Credit: U.S. Army
     Credit: U.S. Army
  • Credit: U.S. Army
     Credit: U.S. Army

Soldier Lethality Cross-Functional Team Stays on Track Despite COVID-19

April 22, 2020
Posted by Julianne Simpson
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The development of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System continues to move forward.

An agile and nontraditional partnership between the Solider Lethality Cross-Functional Team (SL CFT) and Microsoft is keeping the development of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) on schedule despite the outbreak of COVID-19.

Though the Army implemented strict measures to reduce the spread of the virus, Team IVAS has kept the soldiers and civilians working on the program safe without sacrificing time on the pursuit of critical next generation modernization technology.

IVAS is an augmented and virtual reality goggle system based on Microsoft’s HoloLens, and the SL CFT’s signature modernization effort. The concept was introduced when the Army partnered with Microsoft in November 2018.

With restrictions on travel and social distancing in place, the pandemic has revealed the value of the methodologies Team IVAS has used since inception. The team consists of subject matter experts from the SL CFT, program executive office soldiers, Army labs, Microsoft and the FORSCOM units who support the Soldier Touch Points (STPs) for which SL CFT has become known. The team is spread across the country, and members of each organization come together regularly to host the STPs that give soldiers a critical voice in the process.

The third STP has been postponed from summer to fall but SL CFT leaders are confident the team will still deliver all the capabilities in the fall without impacting STP 4.

That agility comes from the ability within the enterprises’ individual organizations to work at the same time on one part of the system or another—hardware, software, integration, etc.

The team can work software remotely, test it remotely, and can come together using collaborative tools for design reviews. Some of the practices implemented across the national workforce because of the virus were already considered Team IVAS best practices

The third STP, now scheduled to start in mid to late October, will put to the test the first ruggedized military form factor of the IVAS. STP 4, in the early part of 2021, will put IVAS to the test at the company level in a variety of combat scenarios to challenge system performance and network integration across multiple levels.

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