A 2004 study by the Satellite Industry Association found that 80% of all US military satellite communication during the 2003 US invasion of Iraq was carried on commercial satellites. Then-US assistant secretary of defense for networks and information integration, John P. Stenbit, estimated that the US military purchased between $200 million and $300 million worth of commercial satellite services during the first year of the war.
Commercial satellite providers remain a mainstay of the US Department of Defense’s satellite communications capability. To streamline the process for the US military and US federal government agencies to lease communications satellite capacity from commercial providers, the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) and the General Services Administration (GSA) undertook an effort in 2009 to combine the commercial satellite communications (COMSATCOM) service contracts for the US military and US civilan government agencies into a 10-year, $5 billion contract vehicle…
GM General Dynamics Land Systems Defense Group LLC in Sterling Heights, MI received a $176.2 million firm-fixed-price contract for 103 Stryker vehicles.
Stryker is a family of 8×8 wheeled armored combat vehicles that can travel at speeds of 60 mph on highways, with a range of 312 miles. Stryker operates with an integrated armor package that provides protection against improvised explosive devices, rocket propelled grenades, and a number of infantry weapons…
In September 2009, long-time US Middle East ally Jordan submitted an impressive wish list of weapons for its armed forces to the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA). The list includes rocket launchers, radios, and Humvees.
DSCA said that weapons Jordan wants to buy will provide its armed forces with a long-range precision artillery support capability that will significantly improve US-Jordan interoperability and provide for the defense of vital installations. What exactly is Jordan looking for?
With over a half million US soldiers in uniform, the US Army has the formidable task of providing human resources (HR) services to all of them. To help with this massive HR requirement, the Army uses contractors.
The primary office that handles HR outsourcing is the Army’s HRsolutions Program Office launched in 2004. HRsolutions manages 4 competitively awarded HR contracts in the areas of studies and analysis, recruitment and retention, personnel services and support, and management and administrative support.
HRsolutions recently awarded 12 multiple-award indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contracts for the HR studies and analysis program, worth up to $1.3 billion in total, for the period 2010-2015. The office expects to award HR contracts in the other areas in the next few months.
In February 2009, SELEX Galileo announced a GBP 19 million contract from the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) to develop and produce an initial Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar prototype. After rigorous ground and compact antenna test range testing, the radar is planned to fly on a Royal Air Force Typhoon aircraft in the UK.
With the EUR 9 billion multinational Tranche 3A purchase, total orders for the Eurofighter reached 559 machines. Even if Tranche 3B never materializes and exports stall, those fighters represent a large investment that will attract upgrades over their lifetimes. Once of the most important upgrades involves replacing the Euroradar consortium’s ECR-90 mechanically-scanned array with a modern AESA radar that offers better resolution, multitasking, upgradeability, and reliability. Euroradar’s CAESAR AESA has already participated in flight trials on the Typhoon, but the UK MoD seems to have something else in mind…
Submarines with improving stealth and attack capability – particularly modern diesel attack submarines – are proliferating worldwide. Locating these relatively inexpensive but extremely quiet boats presents a challenge to the US Navy, then Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Mullen warned Congress in 2007 testimony [pdf].
To counter this threat, the Navy is investigating a distributed and netted approach to anti-submarine warfare (ASW). Among the ASW programs the Navy is considering is the Reliable Acoustic Path Vertical Line Array (RAPVLA). The RAPVLA is a deep water, bottom-mounted, high-grain sensor system that can automatically detect, classify, localize, track and report contacts of interest, such as stealth submarines.
Lockheed Martin recently received a $7 million order for applied research in support of the RAPVLA program…
Using paper medical records in military hospitals and mobile medical units can be impractical at best. Doctors and nurses have to flip through paper-based charts to review patient histories in time-pressure situations that often require immediate action.
Using the US Army’s electronic medical record system called Medical Communications for Combat Casualty Care (MC4), US military doctors, medics, and nurses record and retrieve medical information from laptops. Rather than searching through reams of paper records, Army medical personnel can quickly punch in a patient’s name and have all of the relevant medical history at their fingertips.
Recently, an Army surgeon in Iraq has been able to use the MC4 system not just for record keeping but to perform surgery, which involved transmitting images back to specialists in the United States who assisted the surgeon.
To support the MC4 system, General Dynamics Information Technology recently received a 5-year task order, worth up to $154 million if all options are exercised…
The US Defense Advanced Research Project Agency is working with the US Air Force Research Lab and Northrop Grumman to develop a web-based system to autonomously control manned and unmanned reconnaissance aircraft.
Getting real-time information in an urban firefight can mean the difference between life and death, success and failure. The Heterogeneous Airborne Reconnaissance Team (HART) program is developing IT capabilities to feed ISR aircraft data directly to the soldiers in the field.
On Feb 17/10, Northrop Grumman received a $46.2 million contract under the HART program to develop technologies enabling command and control of unmanned aircraft for the conduct of urban operations.