Small business qualifier Horus Vision LLC in San Bruno, CA received a not-to-exceed $49 million, 5-year firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract for Scout Sniper Observation Telescopes (SSOT). The SSOT is a lightweight variable power telescope that will replace the M49 Sniper 20x power fixed telescope throughout the United States Marine Corps, which has been in use since World War 2 and remains in service with a number of countries around the world.
Snipers are not loners; as shown above, they always work in pairs. One team member serves as the spotter to help identify difficult to find targets at long range, and adjust the marksman’s fire as necessary. The SSOT is intended for those spotters, and is part of a larger set of marksman-class optics buys by the USMC. High-quality optics, in the hands of trained riflemen, are proving to be extremely useful against opponents who regularly use human shields and commit related war crimes. As such, a broader trend within the Corps is the shift toward universal fielding of combat optics, rather than restricting these tools to snipers and designated marksmen.
With respect to the chosen spotter systems, note that the specifications advertised on Horus Vision’s web site do not correspond to the USMC’s purchased systems, which will use less-advanced MilDot crosshairs. See below for the explanation…
Power Point presentations. They’re ubiquitously common, and often criticized for dumbing down discussion within industry and the military. There’s some truth to that assertion, in part because most people have never been trained to design and present that information properly. DID’s “Preparing More Powerful Presentations” offers useful examples, teachings, and tips that can help our readers sharpen an important career skill.
The defense industry is a very technical industry, however, which creates some unique requirements for good presentations. Penn State discusses technical writing and presentations’ requirements, and teaches an associated set of techniques called “the assertion-evidence structure.” It begins by changing each slide’s title to an assertion rather than a heading, and follows by changing the design and structure of the slides themselves. It meshes well with the many of the recommendations in “Preparing More Powerful Presentations”; together, these approaches can make a big difference to your presentation’s impact with its audience.
Defense Industry Daily came across 3 snapshots in recent months that illustrate the changing nature of the front-line information war, and of the environment in which industry and government must operate. We’ve now added a 4th.
These 4 examples have broad reach, from tactical reconnaissance and information warfare, to strategic reconnaissance, to front-line “public diplomacy,” to the halls of politics and power…
1. Tactical: You’re on Candid Cellphone!
2. Google Earth is Watching You… as You Watch Others [NEW]
3. From Front-Line Transparency to Policy Debates: US Navy Blogs
4. Informed Reporters Who Work from Home: The US V.A. Department Experience
Phoenix Air Group of Cartersville, GA received a $26.3 million fixed price indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract to provide air charter service for Headquarters United States Africa Command (US AFRICOM) passengers from Stuttgart Army Airfield, Germany, to various points throughout Africa and Europe. The performance period is from April 1/09 to March 31/12, including unexercised options. This contract was a competitive acquisition, with 7 bids received by United States Transportation Command’s (USTRANSCOM) Directorate of Acquisitions at Scott Air Force Base, IL (HTC711-09-D-0001).
AFRICOM emerged as its own command on Feb 6/07, as the culmination of a 10-year process within the Department of Defense (DoD). It has stepped back from its original “whole of government” model, but still has a significant civilian component and aims to merge aid, relationship building, and capability building within Africa’s own militaries. Its headquarters will remain in Stuttgart, in the wake of political controversies that made an African location infeasible.
Phoenix Air Group is best known as an operator of reconfigurable Learjets and Gulfstream turboprops, designed to assist in exercises. These reconfigurable aircraft can perform electronics training of all kinds, including electronic warfare simulation and simulation of incoming enemy aircraft. They can also be used for target towing, range surveillance and clearance, and related roles.