The Florida Times-Union offers an interview with Adm. James G. Stavridis, currently Commander of US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM, covers Latin America) and soon to take charge of United States European Command as (NATO) Supreme Allied Commander, Europe.
The full transcript discusses the role of the U.S. Navy now and in the future, Afghanistan and Colombia, what lies ahead for NATO, and the current state of US Navy thinking. Those comments are worthwhile reading in and of themselves, but the article adds even more value by including links to the works Stavridis cites as examples of good and thought-provoking work. That includes an April 2009 Proceedings article by serving US Navy Cmdr. Jerry Hendrix called “Buy Ford, Not Ferrari“, which argued for a restructured US Navy that places far less emphasis on nuclear carrier strike groups, and redeploys the ones it retains.
Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding in Newport News, VA is being awarded a $72.7 million contract modification to cover the USS George H. W. Bush’s (CVN 77) Post Shakedown Availability/Selected Restricted Availability. That’s a normal maintenance phase that aims to resolve any items that came up during a ship’s trials and delivery, and make any last-minute changes and upgrades following its acceptance into the fleet. Work will be performed in Newport News, VA and is expected to be complete by January 2010. Contract funds in the amount of $1.9 million will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion and Repair in Newport News, VA will manage this contract (N62793-03-G-0001). See also NGC release.
The USS George Herbert Walker Bush is named after the 41st President of the United States, who earned the Distinguished Flying Cross as a naval aviator during World War 2. In some ways, it’s a transitional ship between the CVN-68 Nimitz class aircraft carriers, and the new “CVN-21” Gerald R. Ford class.
General Dynamics Information Technology, a business unit of General Dynamics, received a $51 million indefinite delivery/ indefinite quantity contract from the Space and Naval Warfare (SPAWAR) Systems Center to provide technical support for the Defense Red Switch Network (DRSN), which provides global, secure voice and voice-conferencing services to senior decision makers within the Department of Defense (DOD). The single award contract (N66001-09-D-0037) covers a 5-year base period with 8 potential 6-month option periods and has a total potential value of $98 million if all options are exercised.
Through the contract, General Dynamics will perform a variety of duties including program management, engineering support, testing and evaluation, integrated logistics support, on-site technical assistance, network security, and implementation and integration of the DRSN, as well as the U.S. military’s secure voice, command and control (C2), and information systems networks. DID has more on the DRSN…
The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) awarded a 5-year, $34 million contract to EDS to provide network and systems engineering and other support services for the Multinational Information Sharing (MNIS) Program Management Office. The contract is being awarded under Encore II contract vehicle.
As part of the contract, Harris, the sole subcontractor to EDS, received a $27 million subcontract to support EDS in its MNIS work.
DID has more on the MNIS network, which aims to mitigate a serious issue that makes it more difficult for American forces to fight alongside their allies…
TASC Corp. in Andover, MA received a ceiling priced $43.5 million firm-fixed-priced, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract to provide sustainment, systems engineering, integration, production, fielding and logistics support for the U.S. Marine Corps’s Topographic Production Capability (TPC) [PDF] system. The TPC system is a transportable, highly mobile, modularized network of systems that allows the commander to exercise near real-time control, coordination, and direction of Marine Air Ground Task Force (MAGTF)’s geospatial intelligence (GEOINT).
American Rheinmetall Munitions (ARM) in Stafford, VA received an $8.2 million order from the Program Manager for Ammunition, Marine Corps Systems Command, in Quantico, VA, to deliver vehicle-launched 66mm visual and infrared screening smoke grenades. The Marines chose the ARM’s red phosphorous smoke MK 1 MOD 0 grenade over the brass flakes-based M76 grenade.
Both the MK 1 MOD 0 and the M76 are armored-vehicle-launched grenades that provide masking for armored vehicles in the visible and thermal infrared wavebands, so-called bispectral obscurants. The obscurants make it difficult for the enemy to detect the vehicles by blocking the electromagnetic spectrum. However, the grenades provide masking in different ways. The MK 1 MOD 0 grenade uses red phosphorous pellets and wafers that, when burned, generate a thick smoke the blocks detection of the vehicle in the visible and infrared spectrum. The M76 grenade uses micropulverized flakes of brass that when dispersed by the grenade also block the infrared and visible spectrum.