The UK Ministry of Defence has signed a GBP 369.5 million (about $615 million), 10-year contract with BAE Systems Insyte to support and maintain the Royal Navy’s light Sting Ray and heavy Spearfish torpedoes. The availability-based Torpedoes Capability Contract consolidates 11 separate contracts into one, and will see BAE Systems and the MOD’s DE&S Weapons Operating Centre working together as “Team Torpedoes.” It covers all aspects of support and maintenance, as well as Spearfish development and upgrade work. BAE says that they expect this partnering approach to lead to savings of about GBP 65 million, or 20% over the traditional support approach.
The TCC agreement will directly secure around 120 posts at BAES Insyte in Portsmouth, as well as subcontractors who will receive about 33% of the contract’s total value. Sub-contractors and torpedo details follow:
Container Security: Sensor or Dog, which is better? (click to view larger)
Science Applications International Corp (SAIC) in San Diego, CA received a $7 million indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N66001-09-D-0034) from the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center (SPAWAR) Pacific to develop a container security device (CSD), a small, low-power sensor mounted on or within a shipping container to detect and warn of the opening or removal of container doors. The contract includes a 3-year ordering period without options.
SAIC will perform work in San Diego and expects to complete it by July 23/12. This contract was not competitively procured; this is a sole source, follow-on contract under the authority of U.S. federal law: only one responsible source and no other supplies or services will satisfy agency requirements. Development of the CSD was initiated by SAIC under contract N66001-05-D-6013, which was competitively awarded.
Scientific Applications International Corp. (SAIC) in San Diego, CA received a maximum $200 million option on a previously awarded prime vendor contract (SPM500-04-D-BP13) for management of consumable parts at U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps aircraft repair facilities.
Under the original Generation II (GEN II) Integrated Prime Vendor (IPV) contract awarded in 2004, SAIC serves as supply chain manager for parts to be used in the depot maintenance of Navy and Marine Corps aircraft, including the F/A-18, P-3, EA6B, C-130, CH-46, CH-53, AV-8, E-2, and S-3. In addition, SAIC is providing support for depot overhaul and maintenance of aircraft subassemblies, engines, ground support equipment, avionics equipment, and other major items.
DID has more on the GEN II IPV contract and the Defense Logistics Agency’s effort to privatize logistics support…
Environmental Leader links and summarizes a recent Los Angeles Times report that covers the push for energy efficiency within the Pentagon. The LA Times reports that the US Defense Department already derives 9.8% of its power from alternative sources and is looking to expand the use of wind, solar, thermal and nuclear energy.
Their report also includes this anecdote from Iraq:
In March 2009, Australia’s Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) awarded a contract to EADS Eurocopter subsidiary Australian Aerospace to provide Through Life Support services for the RAAF’s fleet of 12 C-130J and stretched C-130J-30 Hercules aircraft. Australian Aerospace already supports the RAAF’s AP-3C maritime patrol aircraft, so this is not a huge departure for the firm. Lockheed Martin will be the sub-contractor for aircraft maintenance, engineering and supply chain management, and engine support will continue to be provided by Dubai Aerospace Enterprise subsidiary StandardAero under an existing contract arrangement.
The initial contract is worth up to A$ 292 million (about $189 million). It’s is structured as a 5-year rolling contract whose continuation will reportedly be linked to demonstrated performance and cost containment, with an eye to: improved delivery of services; performance-based, long-term, support arrangements; relationship with the Commonwealth; price disclosure; and meaningful transfer of risk. Contract extensions can continue under these arrangements, through to the C-130J fleet’s expected end of life in 2030.
Air Vice-Marshal Thorne says that the contract will create over 80 additional industry jobs in the Sydney/Richmond area over the next year. Australian DoD | Australian Aerospace.
The program commenced at RAAF Base Richmond in November 2009.
The lessons of Objective Peach, the pivotal Thunder Run, and the Second Battle of Fallujah in Iraq proved that modern tanks still have a key role to play as the battlefield’s mobile behemoths – vehicles that can take surprise punches, and dish them out, too. After the dust of the classic armored thrusts dies down, however, tanks spend a lot of time in a very different role. Their protection levels are still valued on the treacherous urban battlefield, but their advanced array of sensors that can scan for long distances through darkness, rain, or worse are equally valuable. Instead of performing classic cavalry roles, modern tanks spend a lot of time sitting in position and performing armed overwatch.
There’s only one small problem with that role, and it’s spelled “MPG”. A tank’s advanced sensors require a lot of power to run. That kind of consistent power means keeping the engine running, just as it would in your car. With 2 problematic results: (1) forget about providing silent or unobtrusive overwatch; and (2) tanks aren’t exactly fuel-efficient, and fuel supply lines are a prime target for guerrillas or terrorists with IED land mines. This makes the tanks’ fuel much more costly to provide on the front lines, while expanding the number of targets presented to the enemy.
The USA’s M1 Abrams tank is unusual, in that it’s equipped with a jet-like turbine instead of a diesel engine. The good news, the 70-ton tanks can move fast enough to risk speeding tickets, were they on America’s highways instead of a battlefield. The bad news is that their fuel consumption is terrible, even by the low standards of main battle tanks.
This may help to explain why early January 2009 saw Walker Power Systems, Inc. in Phoenix, AZ win a $6.6 million fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite quantity contract to deliver upgraded external auxiliary power units (APUs) for the US Marines’ M1A1 tank fleet. The APU is like an independent generator, providing quieter power for multiple systems while the tank’s main engine remains off. The contract also contains 3 one-year options, which could boost its value to a maximum of $17.3 million. Work will be performed in Phoenix, AZ and work is expected to be complete in December 2009. This contract was competitively procured through full and open competition via the Navy Electronic Commerce Office, with 4 offers received by the US Marine Corps System Command in Quantico, VA (M67854-09-D-6005).
Environmental Leader magazine has a pair of stories covering achievements in the defense sector:
Lockheed Martin received several awards in 2008 for its progress towards the aggressive 25% reduction goals for carbon, waste, and water use it had set in 2007. The firm has set 2012 as the target date, and is also expanding its sales of related conservation services. EL story.
Meanwhile, the US Navy has reduced its overall energy consumption level by 12% as of this year. Since few additional funds were allocated, the Navy is using “share-in-savings” where contractors pay for the upgrade and capital costs, then the Navy pays them back through resulting savings in its energy bills. Environmental Leader’s story details some of these arrangements.
On a comparable note, Raytheon’s Enterprise Energy Team received one of Raytheon’s 2007 Excellence in Operation and Quality award in June 2008. The team achieved Raytheon’s 2-year goal and decreased total company-wide energy consumption by 17% during 2007, vs. an adjusted 2005 baseline. The firm saved $10 million in energy costs during 2007, and avoided 104 million kWh. Since energy constitutes 90% of the firm’s greenhouse gas footprint, the firm expects to meet its greenhouse gas reduction goals a year early.
Full disclosure: DID LLC recently signed a financial agreement with Environmental Leader magazine that involves mutual investments. DID’s long-standing coverage of energy issues and their implications for military procurement will continue, and we look forward to working together with Environmental Leader on key trends and stories of interest.
Blood and drugs are life-savers on the battlefield. These products are also temperature sensitive, which poses a challenge: how can they be shipped and/or kept close to the front lines, in order to provide treatment for trauma patients during the critical first hour (“The Golden Hour”)?
Civilian agencies face this problem, too, with an additional focus on shipping such products less expensively. In Britain, the UK MoD’s Defence Equipment & Support branch turned to that expertise in order to solve its own problem. Enter Minnesota Thermal Sciences and their “Golden Hour Box,” which had already picked up a “Greatest Inventions” award from the US Army…
Perhaps you’ve had this experience with your car. A warning light goes on intermittently, or another system doesn’t seem to operate reliably. The car goes in to the mechanic, where it may or may not display any symptoms. Repeat as required. Eventually, the dreaded diagnosis is given: electrical issues. The problem may or may not be consequential. The fix will be uncertain. The experience will be maddening.
For a military pilot and their maintenance crew, electrical issues are inherently more serious – but no less maddening. Few of us can afford to pay a mechanic for 24 hours of work in order to diagnose an electrical fault, but militaries often do so. Now consider the long-term effects on wiring from the constant airframe vibrations produced by high-energy turbines, and the buffeting produced by travel at several hundred miles per hour. Especially in a machine that may be 30 years old or more, while still possessing some of its original wiring.
As military aircraft fleets continue to age, wiring diagnosis and product improvements will be critical. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program is beginning to introduce production innovations involving self-diagnostic wiring, but what about existing aircraft without a full wiring refit? Enter a US NAVAIR project, and a product made by Eclypse International.