EWA Government Systems, Inc. in Herndon, Va. received a 2-year, Indefinite-Delivery/ Indefinite-Quantity contract with a ceiling of $10.5 million from the Program Management Reconnaissance and Surveillance Office of U.S. Special Operations Command’s Intelligence and Information Systems Program Executive Office (US SOCOM PEO-IIS). They will be developing prototype systems/technologies in support of the Special Reconnaissance Capabilities, Tagging Tracking and Locating, Microelectronics and Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC silicon chips) Development Programs in accordance with USSOCOM requirements. Work will be performed in Herndon, Va.; Montpelier, Vt.; and Fairmont, W.Va. The 2-year ordering period will be completed in September 2009. The contract number is H92222-07-D-0030.
“The PM-I programs span various levels of field employment. Garrison programs provide open source and classified data mining and fusion, weapons of mass destruction counter proliferation analyses and location-specific operational planning data capabilities. The forward operating base programs provide tactical data receivers for near real time situational awareness and threat detection. The tactical programs provide man-packable threat warning, force protection, and situational awareness tools for SOF. Airborne and maritime variants for information collection/dissemination and threat warning are also being developed.”
Sept 11/07 saw Northrop Grumman celebrate some milestones for its National Security Cutter program. The release arrived shortly on the heels of a Defense News Report that notes some of the process improvements in use within the program, but puts the total cost of the first ship at $641 million.
First-of-class ships are often more expensive, post 9/11 changes did add 1,000 of the final design’s 4,300 tons, and the NSC program compares favorably in many respects with past efforts like the AEGIS DDG-51 destroyers and CG-47 cruisers that now form the core of the US Navy. Even so, that $641 million price tag begins to place the Legend Class cutters in the same realm as the new Fridtjof Nansen Class AEGIS air defense frigates that form the high end core of Norway’s navy. Price tags often decline as more ships are built, but there are also cases like the LPD-17 San Antonio Class, whose $1.7 billion cost and 100% overrun on the first ship appear to have perpetuated throughout the build cycle.
Which example will this ship class follow? DID looks at the recent milestones and process improvements underway, in order to begin to answer this question…
Guam Industrial Services, Inc. in Santa Rita, Guam received a $9.8 million firm-fixed-price contract for a 90-calendar-day regular overhaul of Military Sealift Command’s fast combat support ship USNS Bridge [T-AOE-10]. The regular overhaul will include replacing of the air conditioning plant; installation of forward and aft marine sanitation devices; preservation of the underwater hull; examination and polishing of the propeller; propulsion shafting; rudder and keel examinations; overhaul of sea valves and drydocking. This contract includes options that, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to $13 million. Work will be performed in Santa Rita, Guam, and is expected to be complete in December 2007. Contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was competitively procured via the Military Sealift Command’s web page, with 2 offers received (N40442-07-C-2006)
Like all of Military Sealift Command’s ships, the USNS Bridge is an auxiliary ship crewed by civilian mariners but under Navy command. She was transfered to MSC from her role as a Navy combatant ship on June 24/04. Bridge’s primary mission is to rapidly replenish Navy task forces; she can steam at 25 knots, and is able to carry more than 177,000 barrels of oil; 2,150 tons of ammunition; 500 tons of dry stores; and 250 tons of refrigerated stores. T-AOE vessels generally receive these items from shuttle ships like the new T-AKE Lewis & Clark Class, then redistribute them to carrier strike group ships.
Utah State University Research Foundation, North Logan, Utah, is being awarded $10M for cost-plus-fixed-fee completion task order #0007 under previously awarded contract (N00173-02-D-2003) for research in the area of Time Critical Sensor Image/Data Processing. Specifically, they will research advanced networking, compression/image processing, and ground/control station sensor processing. Under this task order the contractor will be required to support the development and demonstration of hardware and software systems for airborne and ground-based acquisition, recording, screening, dissemination, fusion, and exploitation of multi-INT sensor systems for manned and unmanned reconnaissance and surveillance systems.
This, too, sounds like an excellent future fit for the American RAID surveillance system. Its primary target, however, is the massive bandwidth crunch being created by hundreds of video-equipped UAVs and networked airborne ISR(Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance) systems sending video back to base. Obviously, any system that could improve the links in this chain, from screening and fusion of the information collected into smaller ‘packages,’ to better video compression and processing, to advanced networking, would be a big help. Other firms like Trident Systems are also doing R&D related to bits of this puzzle.
Work will be performed in North Logan, Utah, and is expected to be complete in September 2012. The Naval Research Laboratory, in Washington, DC issued the contract.
BAE Systems Advanced Technologies of Washington DC received a $17.9 million contract under the ARGUS program. Their objective is to develop a system that provides a real-time, high-resolution, wide area video persistent surveillance capability, then transition this capability to the military. Sounds like a perfect future fit for the American RAID surveilance system.
Six years ago, the attacks of 9/11 ushered in a new global conflict, and began an accelerated series of changes to militaries and defense industries around the world that are not even close to running their full course. The US Department of Defense has put up a site with a wide variety of resources to remember the 6th anniversary of the attack on the Pentagon and World Trade Centers. Remembering Sept 11: Six Years Later….
As “France & Spain Order New Eurocopter Tiger HAD (updated)” noted, the Eurocopter Tiger is something of an odd duck whose two initial versions (French HAP, German HAC-UHT) each seemed to each be missing a vital piece that was present on the other version. Export orders to Spain (Tiger HAD) and Australia (Tiger ARH) both move to correct some of those deficiencies, and Spain has a few Tiger HAP helicopters from initial deliveries that will be converted to the HAD variant.
Spain’s helicopters will have air-air missile capability, and the short-range MBDA Mistral missile is the helicopter’s default anti-air armament. Spanish Army, airborne, and Marines units already deploy Mistral missiles in a man-portable air defense (MANPAD) role, so it makes a great deal of sense to add a proposed EUR 27.7 million order, spread over 5 years (2007-2011), in order to equip Spain’s Tiger Helicoptero de Apoyo y Destruccion craft with Mistral ATAM missiles and launchers. Another contract will complement the Mistrals with Israeli Spike-LR anti-armor missiles, which also have some anti-helicopter capability. Spanish Council of Ministers release – translation help via reader Pedro Lucio.
Todd Pacific Shipyards Corp., Seattle Division in Seattle WA received a $26.7 million modification under previously awarded contract (N00024-04-C-4152), exercise an option for performance of the Dry Docking Ship Planned Incremental Availability of the Nimitz Class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis [CVN 74], which was commissioned in 1995. During an American Nimitz Class carrier’s 50 year life span, it has 12 Planned incremental availabilities, 4 Drydocking Planned Incremental Availabilities (PIA+D), and 1 multi-year reactor refueling and complex overhaul. The PIA+D procedure can involve substantial modifications of its own, including improved radars, combat systems, etc. In June 2007, for instance, USS George Washington [CVN 73] even received a new mast as part of this process.
Work will be performed in Bremerton, Wash., and is expected to be complete in March 2008. All contract funding will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility in Bremerton, Wash. issued the contract.
In the military sphere, Goodrich already supplies the supply the electrical power generation and distribution system for the CH-53K; input drive couplings for Sikorsky’s UH-60/SH-60 Black Hawk / Seahawk utility helicopters; and the input couplings, tail couplings and tail shaft on the H-92 Superhawk helicopters. Goodrich’s Engine Components site located in Rome, NY, will be involved in the development and delivery of the complete drive shaft system for the aircraft, acting in a system integrator role for this sub-system. Goodrich release.
Militaries around the world are moving to modernize and transform themselves to meet the challenges of the 21st century. Our mission is to deliver a regular cross-section of relevant, on-target stories, news, and analysis that will help experts and interested laypeople alike stay up to speed on key military developments and issues. Stories are broken down by military category and presented as fast bullet points that orient you quickly, with accompanying links if you wish to pursue more in-depth treatments.
Some of This Month’s Targets of Opportunity Include: Aging aircraft; F-22; F-35; India’s big fighter contest; 2018 bomber; Next-gen gunships; Japan’s stealth aircraft; JCA – just confusing; Poseidon down under; Boeing’s invisibility man; Odd new satellite; unmanned fighters & swarms; Cell phones & Patriots; Huge IT contracts; DARPA’s Deep Green; Lots of MRAP; FCS spinouts; Fire Ball; Better body armor; Australia’s new fleet; Korea: us too!; Britain’s new carriers; US Navy’s new bills; Russia’s stealthy Stereguschiy; Remote firefighting; Coast Guard cutters; ADVENT of breakthrough jet engines; $1M wearable power prize; Sub-finding ‘shark’; UK’s Grand Challenge & flying saucers; Boeing’s new plane design; DARPA’s robot dog; New Russian nukes; Britain’s new maintenance concept works; Israel prepares; Counter-insurgency air needs; Export controls and their blowback; CSAR-X: rescue me!; And much, much more: