Uploadage https://unockia.xyz Thu, 22 Oct 2020 13:10:09 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.4.2 Business insurance for manufacturers: 3 coverages to consider. https://unockia.xyz/business-insurance-for-manufacturers-3-coverages-to-consider/ https://unockia.xyz/business-insurance-for-manufacturers-3-coverages-to-consider/#respond Thu, 22 Oct 2020 13:10:09 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/business-insurance-for-manufacturers-3-coverages-to-consider/ 2020-10-22 11:55:38
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If you run a manufacturing company, how do you know if you have all the insurance you need to fully protect your business? The broad term “manufacturing” encompasses many kinds of companies. Since this is not a one-size-fits-all industry, there are ways to customize business insurance for manufacturers and build a policy with the right coverage.

A standard policy should include coverage for your business property (which includes your building, equipment and inventory) and liability protection for claims due to bodily injury and property damage. General liability insurance can help cover claims up to the coverage limits in your policy. However, it’s worth noting that general liability insurance doesn’t cover all types of claims.

Depending on how your manufacturing business is set up, reviewing these types of additional insurance coverage could help your company prepare for the unexpected:

  1. Equipment Breakdown Coverage. Your general policy will cover equipment damage or loss caused by external forces (a fire, storm, etc.). But what if a sudden power surge or outage puts your entire facility out of commission? Or a key piece of machinery breaks down in the middle of an important production run? In these scenarios, equipment breakdown coverage could pay for both the business income lost and the repair or replacement of the damaged machinery.
  2. Professional Liability Coverage. Also called errors and omissions coverage, professional liability is additional insurance designed to protect your business from the costs of faulty workmanship, materials, design or product. For instance, if a shipment of parts to a customer is faulty in some way, professional liability coverage would pay for the costs of manufacturing a new batch for that customer.
  3. Cyber and Data Coverage. These days, computers and tablets are everywhere—not just on office desks. Even computerized manufacturing equipment can be hacked, just like your computer. While a standard business insurance policy will cover computer hardware, it generally does not cover software or the costs arising from a cyberattack. For that, you’ll need cyber and data coverage. This protection can help your business respond to machine hacks, ransomware attacks, data breaches and more.

These aren’t the only add-ons to consider. For instance, if your company uses a work truck or van, you may want to add a commercial auto policy. And workers’ compensation insurance can help employees who get hurt or sick on the job cover medical expenses and return to work.

Business insurance for manufacturers should be made to suit your unique business needs. If you’re unsure which coverage is right for your company, an independent agent can help.

Bonus Read: If you operate your manufacturing business from home, check out, Insurance a Self-Employed Business Owner Should Consider.

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Space Force establishes the first of three field commands https://unockia.xyz/space-force-establishes-the-first-of-three-field-commands/ https://unockia.xyz/space-force-establishes-the-first-of-three-field-commands/#respond Wed, 21 Oct 2020 23:03:11 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/space-force-establishes-the-first-of-three-field-commands/ 2020-10-21 22:05:25
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Space Force officially has its first field command, after the service redesignated Air Force Space Command at Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado as the new headquarters of Space Operations Command during an Oct. 21 ceremony.

“The establishment of Space Operations Command adds powerful depth to our collective space combat capability,” said Gen. James Dickinson, head of U.S. Space Command “Make no mistake, we are the best in the world in space. With the stand up of Space Operations Command today, we are even better aligned to deliver combat power more effectively.”

SpOC, meanwhile, oversees the operations of the nation’s military satellites. It’s portfolio includes the GPS constellation, missile warning satellites and the various communications satellites that provide war fighters with global connectivity. SpOC is also the Space Force’s service component to U.S. Space Command, ensuring that the 11th combatant command can utilize the services broad array of on orbit platforms.

Shortly after the Space Force was established in Dec. 2019, the 14th Air Force was redesignated as Space Operations Command.

With the new designation of Peterson AFB as SpOC headquarters, the former home of the command, Vandenberg AFB, was activated as SpOC West. SpOC West will retain its mission as U.S. Space Command’s Combined Force Space Component Command, where it provides space war fighting support to the combatant commanders, joint force and coalition partners.

Newly promoted Gen. Stephen N. Whiting, who has been serving as the deputy commander of Space Force headquarters, will lead the new command.

“He is the right leader to become the first commander of the Space Operations Command field command and to accelerate the transformation of space operations,” said Space Force Chief of Space Operations Gen. John “Jay” Raymond at the ceremony. “Gen. Whiting has mastered command at nearly every echelon, from the 13th Space Warning Squadron in Clear, Alaska, to the 21st Space Wing here at Peterson, to our first commander of the Combined Force Space Component Command.”

Raymond also credited Whiting and his team with standing up the provisional headquarters for U.S. Space Command, the recently reestablished 11th combatant command, and developing the Space Force’s first doctrine: Space Power.

“At this pivotal moment in history, I can think of no more consequential place to serve than in Space Operations Command as we do our part to build our new service while providing our combatant command the majority of the tools it needs to ensure the protection and defense of the United States and allied interests in space,” said Whiting.

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Army official calls for joint CJADC2 lab https://unockia.xyz/army-official-calls-for-joint-cjadc2-lab/ https://unockia.xyz/army-official-calls-for-joint-cjadc2-lab/#respond Wed, 21 Oct 2020 21:01:11 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/army-official-calls-for-joint-cjadc2-lab/ 2020-10-21 20:20:57
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Army official who led the service’s largest test of its developing network, artificial intelligence systems and sensors in September says there needs to be a shared laboratory where the joint forces can work together on improving those capabilities.

During an Oct. 21 media roundtable at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Army Futures Command’s Next Generation Combat Vehicle Cross-Functional Team Director Brigadier General Ross Coffman said that planned annual demonstrations are not enough to ensure technologies from the various services work together. Instead, the joint forces need a shared lab for continued collaboration.

In September at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz, Coffman oversaw a sprawling demonstration known as Project Convergence, which the Army is calling “a campaign of learning.” With Project Convergence, the Army is looking to use new network and AI capabilities to connect any sensor to the best shooter, regardless of domain or service. It is, in essence, the Army’s best effort to make the Pentagon’s Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control (CJADC2) concept a reality.

Each of the services is developing its own piece of the CJADC2 puzzle. Most notably, the U.S. Air Force has doled out dozens of contracts and held several on-ramp events as part of its Advanced Battle Management Systems effort. But in order to put the “joint” in CJADC2, those independent efforts will need to be interoperable, with data able to flow from one service to the next seamlessly. The Army and the Air Force have made some progress on that front, signing an agreement on Sept. 29 to work together in developing “mutual standards for data sharing and service interfacing.”

“What the Army and the Air Force are agreeing to is, we’re going to be able to see their data, they’re going to be able to see our data. And as much as we can, we will come up with common standards,” Hinote told C4ISRNET Oct. 15. “But even if we can’t come up with common standards, we realize that translators are going to be something that will be with us for a long time, and we will build the translators necessary to make sure we can share.”

The Army has already dipped its toe into integrating systems from another service into its tactical network. During Project Convergence 2020, the Army was able to borrow a U.S. Marine Corps F-35B and tie it into their sensor to shooter pipeline. In one exercise, the Army was able to take satellite imagery, detect threats and develop targeting data through artificial intelligence, and then pass that data through their developmental networks to the F-35B, which was then able to eliminate the target. In another exercise, the F-35B acted as the sensor, detecting a threat and passing its targeting data to a ground-based weapons system, which then responded accordingly.

Army officials have touted that collaboration — which was not a planned part of Project Convergence — for showing how the services can work together to detect and fire on beyond-line-of-sight targets. And the Army wants to build on that success at Project Convergence 2021, where it plans to integrate the joint forces into its campaign of learning.

“We’ve got to scale this. We’ve got to scale this at the joint level. We’re going to do that in ’21 with the Air Force, the Marines and the Navy have all committed to Project Convergence ’21,” said Coffman.

The United Kingdom has also agreed to participate, and Australia is a maybe.

Photo by imaginima/Getty Images

But as excited as the Army is to bring in those partners in 2021, Coffman noted that they need to be collaborating more than just once a year. To foster that teamwork and reduce redundancy, Coffman is calling for a joint lab where the services can develop their CJADC2 systems together.

“We need a joint laboratory where we set this up in the lab — We ask the Air Force to bring their systems, the Navy to bring their systems, the Marines to bring their systems — so that we can continue to learn not just once a year, but a monthly basis: Here we are, here is where we need to go,” said Coffman.

Coffman did not elaborate on where this lab would be, when it would be set up, or who would establish it.

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6 questions with the US Army’s enterprise IT boss https://unockia.xyz/6-questions-with-the-us-armys-enterprise-it-boss/ https://unockia.xyz/6-questions-with-the-us-armys-enterprise-it-boss/#respond Wed, 21 Oct 2020 14:55:09 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/6-questions-with-the-us-armys-enterprise-it-boss/ 2020-10-21 14:02:53
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WASHINGTON — The U.S. Army is about to start the implementation phase of its major enterprise-IT-as-a-service pilot awarded to AT&T, Verizon and Microsoft. But this is just one of several major initiatives underway at the Army’s Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems, a $4.3 billion operation that is responsible for meeting IT and business system needs of the service.

In May, PEO EIS announced that Ross Guckert would be taking over as program executive officer. Under Guckert’s guidance, the office is starting to center its focus on finding the right performance metrics for projects, using data effectively and modernizing the service’s Enterprise Resource Planning platforms. The PEO also announced that it is reorganizing and realigning a few offices.

Guckert discussed all these efforts in an interview with C4ISRNET in mid-October. This interview has been edited for clarity and brevity.

Where do you want to improve the day-to-day workflow of PEO EIS?

When I got here, there were some nuggets of people that used different metrics and tools very well. In others, there is room for improvement. So how we see ourselves is really important (in the) end-to-end life cycle. So it starts with the acquisition strategy, the requests for proposals, the deliverables. We’re asking for how we want to influence the behavior of industry. And then after we get an award, what are the metrics and tools that we want to use? Are we setting up a regular battle rhythm with industry and the functional (my team) to look at those metrics, to look at the leading indicators to interpret the data and then make adjustments as necessary? How are we adopting the best practices and keeping our finger on the pulse of industry with innovation, like machine learning and artificial intelligence? And how do we understand what metrics and tools work best for us?

Some folks might think: “I’m using metrics, I’m using tools so I’m OK.” But are they the right ones? And I’ve seen instances where we’ve used metrics and tools, and then still fell off a cliff because they were the wrong things we were measuring.

Weekly, I think we should be able, with industry (and) with the functional, be looking at the data, understand what it’s telling us, understand what the leading indicators are and react as we need to make sure that program stays on their baseline based on cost, schedule and performance.

PEO EIS recently announced it is reorganizing. Part of that involves moving some systems out of the Army Data and Analytics Platforms portfolio and into the new Defense Integrated Business Systems, formerly called General Fund Enterprise Business System. Why was that decision made?

We reorganized for a number of reasons. The Army Data and Analytics Platform was reorganized just so we are aligned with the Army’s priority that data is a strategic asset. And so we have Vantage, which is a visualization tool, but also has the data analytics behind it. And so we’re understanding how do we pull in all the databases and all the data. How do we standardize it or clean it so the AI and machine learning can learn on that standardized data? How do we define what is authoritative data, and how we really reduce hundreds and hundreds of databases we have in the Army?

So that’s a big chore that Dr. (David) Markowitz, the Army chief data officer, and he has an Army analytics board that we are a member of. We’re shaping that implementation plan now.

Ross Guckert is the new head of PEO EIS. (U.S. Army)
Ross Guckert is the new head of PEO EIS. (U.S. Army)

What’s your role in that?

Like I said, it’s a work in progress. But because we have the visualization tool, we have the data analytics and the platform called Vantage, we’re going to play a critical role in that. And what we’re suggesting is let’s do a use case moving forward to see how it would play out. How would we reach into the different databases and pull the data for the specific use case that the Army is looking to answer? And how do we get that answer to the Army commanders so they can make data-driven decisions?

That’s our role with the platform that does the visualization, that does the data analytics behind it. The architecture is going to be important, and that’s going to come from Dr. Markowitz and how they clean the data and standardized edits that come from Dr. Markowitz. But I think we’re going to play a key role in that, as he lays out that plan.

What are the major projects your office will work on this year, and who are some of your key partners?

My priority is modernizing both the network side of our portfolio as well as the enterprise business systems. So that means defensive cyber. That means IT modernization. That means how we do business-process reengineering for ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) modernization. So the network — we look, like the Army does, at the network as a weapons system. So we need to adapt to meet the evolving needs of the Army.

I’m partnering with (Army Cyber Command), the Defense Information Systems Agency, Army Futures Command and cross-functional teams like the Network CFT to modernize our installations. Our goal at the end of the day is make sure we enable the Army’s network to operate unfettered and ensure that it’s protected from cyberattacks.

What work is currently being done on ERP modernization?

I’m excited about that. The Army has made it a priority. We’re in the early stages. The Army is drafting that first requirement called the (Capstone Requirements Document). They’re starting the business-process reengineering phase as well. We are trying to put an acquisition strategy together and a business case moving forward because there will be a decision next year with (Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology) Dr. (Bruce) Jette as he assigns the office of primary responsibility and approves that acquisition strategy.

So we’re working closely with the multifunctional capabilities team under the office of business transformation to shape all those documents and efforts, and then put an acquisition strategy together that Dr. Jette is going to approve.

Last year, the Army named three vendors for an Enterprise-IT-as-a-service pilot. What is the status of that pilot program?

I’m excited about the EITaaS pilot. We’re getting ready to do the implementation phase for our three vendors: AT&T, Verizon and Microsoft. And so the advantages are significant: everything from security speed; fewer outages; high availability; and the latest upgrades to the state-of-the-art capability that industry brings versus putting an infrastructure in place, paying for that, and then paying to maintain and upgrade it over time — a better return on investment.

But there’s the the operational readiness aspects that are brought to bear as well that are going to be part of that return on investment, and the argument that we have to make for the Army. The things I talked about like speed and fewer outages and high availability and disaster recovery and things like that are what EITaaS and IT-as-a-service will provide.

.(tagsToTranslate)EITaaS(t)Army PEO EIS(t)it modernization
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BAE teams up with Elbit on combat vehicle tech https://unockia.xyz/bae-teams-up-with-elbit-on-combat-vehicle-tech/ https://unockia.xyz/bae-teams-up-with-elbit-on-combat-vehicle-tech/#respond Wed, 21 Oct 2020 13:54:10 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/bae-teams-up-with-elbit-on-combat-vehicle-tech/ 2020-10-21 13:19:55
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BAE Systems is teaming up with Elbit Systems of America to develop combat vehicle technology, according to an Oct. 21 BAE statement.

“The arrangement is focused on validating and integrating new technologies on combat vehicle systems to deliver advanced warfighting capabilities,” the statement reads.

BAE Systems — Bradley’s manufacturer — opted out of the previous OMFV competitive effort because the company felt the requirements and timeline to design, develop and field a new vehicle wasn’t realistic.

BAE has been quiet about whether it plans to invest its time and money into the new OMFV competition, but a partnership with Elbit, which is a leader in advanced turret solutions, could be a sign that it will participate this time around.

“The teaming arrangement will explore crew automation, vehicle protection systems and other defensive and offensive systems for integration into turrets of various cannon calibers and supporting weapon systems for combat vehicles,” according to the statement.

“BAE Systems and Elbit America are investing in transformational combat vehicle technologies and turret solutions that will greatly enhance the lethality and survivability of next-generation combat vehicles for the U.S. and international militaries,” Jim Miller, director of business development at BAE Systems, said. “Our relationship demonstrates a commitment to provide our customers with solutions for future battlefields based on our collective combat vehicle expertise.”

Rheinmetall made an unsuccessful attempt last year to enter the OMFV competition with Raytheon as a US-based partner, but said it was unable to get its single Lynx vehicle in existence to the United States by the Army’s due date to deliver a physical bid sample.

General Dynamics Land Systems is also expected to compete in the OMFV competition. It was the only company to deliver physical bid sample in the last go-around. The Army is not requiring a bid sample in the new OMFV competition.

The service plans to request whitepapers and then choose five prime contractor teams to design rough digital prototypes. The service will then award up to three contracts for a detailed design and prototype phase that will include options for low-rate initial production. One vendor will be selected to go into production.

.(tagsToTranslate)U.S. Army(t)BAE Systems(t)Elbit Systems of America(t)Elbit(t)Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle(t)OMFV(t)Next-Generation Combat Vehicle(t)NGCV(t)Rheinmetall(t)Textron(t)General Dynamics Land Systems
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Are software-defined ground stations the next big leap? Kratos is betting on it. https://unockia.xyz/are-software-defined-ground-stations-the-next-big-leap-kratos-is-betting-on-it/ https://unockia.xyz/are-software-defined-ground-stations-the-next-big-leap-kratos-is-betting-on-it/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 22:39:09 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/are-software-defined-ground-stations-the-next-big-leap-kratos-is-betting-on-it/ 2020-10-20 21:41:00
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WASHINGTON — Software-defined payloads have revolutionized how industry and the government approach satellites. So why not software-defined ground stations?

That’s the question Kratos is asking. On Oct. 20, the longtime Pentagon contractor with experience building satellite support systems unveiled its new OpenSpace platform — a family of virtual products that applies the software-defined approach to the ground station. OpenSpace uses an open standards, cloud-based system that can be continuously adjusted to mission needs without having to install new hardware.

Pentagon officials often complain that the nation’s current satellite ground architecture is stymied by stovepiped, custom-built proprietary ground systems. The department has said it plans to move to an enterprise ground system, but it’s not there yet.

Kratos hopes that OpenSpace can at least be part of the solution.

Because the platform is software-based, satellite operators no longer need to use custom-built hardware to connect to and control their on-orbit systems. Instead, OpenSpace virtualizes the ground system in software, effectively allowing it to be linked up to any antenna with a digital converter.

“It’s a big announcement from our perspective in that it’s going to address a lot of the key issues that are challenging the space industry across the board, and especially some of the issues that the defense and government world is going through,” Neil Oatley, Kratos’ vice president for marketing, told C4ISRNET.

‘We’re really stuck back’

Software-defined payloads have opened up new possibilities in the space industry. Previously, satellites were designed to be rather static tools — once placed in orbit, it becomes all but impossible to physically replace the payload hardware or refigure the software. That means that the system you launch is the system you’ve got, regardless of whether your mission needs change or you want to do something new with your orbital tech.

The Defense Department is investing in capabilities that could eventually allow physical access to operational satellites via robotic space vehicles, but that’s still in development.

All that is just to say, when the military builds a satellite, it builds it with the expectation that the space-bound payload will be largely static over the lifetime of the spacecraft. In other words, it will do the mission it was meant to do, and not much else.

“When you look at the ground today, it’s the one area where we’re really stuck back in 2G-type technology,” said Phil Carrai, president of Kratos’ Space, Training and Cyber division. “Systems are stovepiped. They’re static. They’re built with custom hardware. They have software-specific technologies that are dedicated to specific satellites. And that’s really making them unable to play in the coming new world.”

Building a new, custom ground system for each new satellite or constellation is not only costly, but it limits flexibility. The satellite-specific nature of existing ground systems makes it difficult to build third-party applications that can easily be installed across systems. Moreover, it limits the ability of operators to simultaneously connect to multiple constellations using the same ground system.

However, industry has created a workaround.

Satellites may not be physically inaccessible, but they frequently communicate with operators over radio frequency signals. If a given payload’s functions are largely virtualized — meaning they are software-defined and not hardware-defined — then operators can alter a given satellite’s capabilities and mission by simply installing new software.

Hence, the growing interest in building software-defined payloads. In fact, the next GPS payload will feature an entirely digital payload.

With OpenSpace, Kratos is applying the basic principles of software-defined payloads to satellite ground systems — the technology used to command and control the spacecraft once it’s on orbit. The ground system is what operators use to cue, download data from, and monitor their satellites. According to Kratos, its OpenSpace platform is the first dynamic, software-defined ground system that will apply those lessons learned from the space layer to the ground layer.

“What we did with OpenSpace is we actually started from scratch with an entirely new platform that is based on the fundamentals of network function virtualization (NFV) and software-defined networking (SDN),” said Greg Quiggle, vice president of product management at Kratos, comparing the platform to the architecture underlying new 5G networks. “We took that same basic premise and we applied it to the way a ground system should be built to interconnect software-defined satellites, multi-constellation networks and a terrestrial network.”

A key feature that enables OpenSpace is the digitization of the radio frequency signal as close to the antenna as possible, transforming that flow of data into what is effectively a large ethernet network.

“Once you’ve done that — you move from (radio frequency) to digital — you now can process those subchannels, that bandwidth, in software through something called virtualized network functions,” Quiggle explained.

The platform takes typical purpose-built ground station hardware — splitters, channelizers, matrix switches, modulators, demodulators and much more — and recreates them in a virtual environment. Once the radio frequency data is digitized, it can be processed through all of these virtual tools.

One consequence of that is the software can be run anywhere — it does not have to be located at the antenna. Operators can run this solution in the cloud or in a classified data center, said Quiggle.

That also means any ground station using OpenSpace can be quickly adjusted for different uses. For instance, take an operator who needs to interact with satellites. By using an OpenSource-enabled ground station, that individual can load his or her own software-defined solution into the system, connect with the satellite, download any data and cue the spacecraft for its next tasks. Once that satellite passes out of view, a second operator can take over the ground station, load an entirely different software-defined solution and interact with the satellite as it passes over. In this scenario, both users were able to use a single ground station to communicate with their own unique satellites.

In another example, the first user is ready to use one ground station to interact with a satellite as it passes overhead, but inclement weather disrupts the process. Instead of waiting for the satellite to pass overhead again, the user simply needs to find the next available ground station on the satellite’s course, virtually load software and then access the satellite from there.

Military applications

OpenSpace is clearly set to have commercial implications. In fact, Microsoft announced Oct. 20 that it will use OpenSpace as part of its Azure Orbital ground-station-as-a-service.

Azure Orbital is Microsoft’s answer to Amazon Web Services’ Ground Station model, which allows customers to access their satellites by renting time on Amazon’s ground stations and the AWS platform. It’s a business model that could be attractive to small companies looking to field small satellites without building massive, cost-prohibitive ground systems to support them.

But a product like OpenSpace could make an even bigger splash in the military space community, especially when it comes to satellite communications.

In a statement released earlier this year, the Space Force laid out its concept of “fighting SATCOM.” The service envisions enabling war fighters to roam among satellite communications providers to ensure forces remain connected even if one provider is jammed or unavailable. That level of fluidity requires some major changes to how the military has traditionally approached satellite communications.

With the Fighting SATCOM Enterprise, the Space Force wants to develop an integrated architecture for commercial and military satellite systems to ensure connectivity for the war fighter even in degraded environments. (U.S. Marine Corps Photo by Pfc. Dalton S. Swanbeck)

“One of the things that the government is looking for very specifically is the ability to create an open enterprise-wide architecture for their protected communications systems,” said Frank Backes, senior vice president for federal space-related business at Kratos.

“And as they move forward with proliferated LEO (low-Earth orbit) and MEO (medium-Earth orbit) constellations to add communication options, resiliency and capability to their current geosynchronous space communications environment … this ground architecture is very critical to the defense goals and what they’re trying to achieve,” he added.

Currently, the ability to roam between constellations to avoid jamming is hampered by stovepiped systems, which are designed to work with a single satellite or a set of satellites. Because OpenSpace can leverage any radio frequency antenna, digitizes that signal and process that data in software, the operator can use the same ground station for multiple constellations. Kratos certainly hopes that its system could be the ground solution for the “fight SATCOM” concept.

“Today, the U.S. government on the defense side is very dependent on their own antennas and their own hardware that is deployed for their communications infrastructure and their satellite command-and-control environment. And one of the reasons for that is the hardware that is out in the field today is protected hardware: It may have specialized waveforms, it may have specialized components, it may even have specialized encryption infrastructure,” Backes said. “That limits the military to only using certain apertures for communications. As soon as you move to this dynamic environment — this OpenSpace environment that Kratos is talking about — now you have the ability to use any commercial or military antenna infrastructure for your system and dynamically configure that as needed.

“Combined with the ability to move protected hardware out of the field and putting that into a controlled cloud environment, now all of a sudden I have the ability to create the resilient environment that the Department of Defense is looking for.”

Kratos told C4ISRNET in a statement that the company “is providing satellite ground system engineering support on several DoD pLEO space segment teams.” In addition, the company noted it “will be bidding our OpenSpace and (Eterprise Ground Services) capabilities on pLEO systems as those opportunities mature.”

“When you look at … the new LEO and MEO constellations — just from a pure imaging/sensing perspective — we don’t see how you make those happen without an element of a dynamic software-defined ground,” Carrai said. “The timing has to be second or milliseconds. That we think is going to be essential for us to really get what we’re paying for and we need from a U.S. constellation perspective.”

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Lockheed sees earnings growth in space business https://unockia.xyz/lockheed-sees-earnings-growth-in-space-business/ https://unockia.xyz/lockheed-sees-earnings-growth-in-space-business/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 21:38:09 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/lockheed-sees-earnings-growth-in-space-business/ 2020-10-20 18:47:27
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WASHINGTON ― Space emerged as Lockheed Martin’s business area with the highest growth, driven by hypersonic weapons programs and an anticipated next-generation interceptor award, CEO James Taiclet said Tuesday on the company’s third-quarter earnings call.

Though F-35 fighter jet deliveries and classified programs drove growth in Lockheed’s aeronautics segment, and demand for Hellfire missiles drove the missiles and fire control segment, low single-digit increases were largely Lockheed’s norm for the quarter.

“When we speak of hypersonics, I think there’s a very big upside there because there’s a very big threat. It’s getting worse out of Russia and China, and the U.S. and its allies are going to have to meet it both on offensive and defensive hypersonic systems,” Taiclet said, adding that classified space systems are a “wide-open field.”

Taiclet also said he expects the government will work with industry to counter emerging kinetic and non-kinetic threats to space assets, ground stations and the links between them. He pointed to the Space Development Agency’s selection of Lockheed, which is one of the firms building its “transport layer” — a low-Earth orbit constellation of satellites that can transfer data globally through optical intersatellite links.

Taiclet touted the satellite constellation’s eventual ability to transmit data at high speeds to aircraft, ground troops, and surface and undersea vessels as synergistic with Lockheed’s push into 5G networking, which Taiclet calls “5G.mil.” A telecom executive before he joined Lockheed in June, Taiclet speculated that the company’s toehold will give it an advantage as competition in this business area heats up.

SDA Director Derek Tournear previously stated that the transport layer will be the space component of Joint All-Domain Command and Control, or JADC2, a Pentagon effort to connect any sensor to any shooter across domains and services. The effort now has a “C” at the beginning — CJADC2 — for “Combined.”

Lockheed reported Tuesday that its space segment’s net sales in the third quarter of 2020 increased $163 million, or 6 percent, compared to the same period in 2019. The segment earned $90 million for government satellite programs due to higher volume (primarily Next Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared satellites), and about $60 million for strategic and missile defense programs due to higher volume (primarily hypersonic development programs).

Space’s operating profit in the third quarter of 2020 decreased $61 million, or 20 percent, compared to the same period in 2019. There was a decrease there of $50 million due to lower equity earnings from the corporation’s investment in United Launch Alliance ― a joint venture with Boeing.

Lockheed announced last week it will partner with Aerojet Rocketdyne to compete for the Next Generation Interceptor program, which is run by the Missile Defense Agency. The MDA plans to downselect to two companies, with an eventual winner expected to have a system ready in 2028.

On Tuesday’s call, Taiclet said Lockheed’s acquisition of Integration Innovation Inc.’s hypersonics portfolio this month was to provide a new capability in thermal management for hypersonic glide bodies.

The deal with i3 of Huntsville, Alabama, was part of a broader mergers and acquisition strategy, that includes joint ventures and commercial partnerships, to add to the company’s “technological firepower” in areas like mission systems, he said.

“We plan to be active, but we plan to be very, very prudent,” he noted.

It was disclosed last week that the Pentagon’s nascent hypersonic missile, during a March 19 test in Hawaii, hit within 6 inches of its target. The Army is developing a ground-launched capability and plans to field a battery-sized hypersonic weapon to soldiers by 2023.

Lockheed executives were upbeat about space launch. Under a recent Pentagon award, potentially worth billions of dollars, to launch national security payloads over the next five years, ULA will receive 60 percent of the contracts and SpaceX will get 40 percent.

Asked Tuesday about competition between ULA and SpaceX, Lockheed Chief Financial Officer Ken Possenriede acknowledged SpaceX as “more than an emerging threat right now.”

“Of the recent competitions we’ve had with them, we’ve been pleased with where ULA landed relative to SpaceX,” Possenriede said. “We also think we now have a price point that is compelling to customers that will allow ULA to get its fair share of awards over SpaceX.”

Nathan Strout contributed to this report.

.(tagsToTranslate)lockheed q3 earnings(t)lockheed hypersonics(t)jim taiclet(t)Space Development Agency(t)hypersonics russia(t)hyersonics china(t)next-generation interceptor(t)transport layer(t)5G.mil(t)Aerojet Rocketdyne(t)Integration Innovation Inc.(t)Dynetics Technical Solution(t)United Launch Alliance(t)SpaceX(t)Ken Possenriede
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The Army and Air Force are finally on the same page with a plan to connect the military. What happens next? https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next-2/ https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next-2/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 20:37:08 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next-2/ 2020-10-20 20:21:51
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WASHINGTON — After years of sometimes contentious discussions, the Army and Air Force have adopted a plan to work together on what they are now calling Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control — the idea that all of the U.S. military’s sensors and shooters must be able to send data to each other seamlessly and instantaneously.

The agreement, signed Sept. 29 by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Brown and Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville, paves the way for closer collaboration on “mutual standards for data sharing and service interfacing” that will ultimately allow the services to ensure that new communications gear, networks and artificial intelligence systems they field can connect to each other, reducing the risk of incompatibility.

But much is still unknown, including the exact nature of the Army-Air Force collaboration and how much technology the services will be willing to share.

Army Futures Command and the Air Force’s office of strategy, integration and requirements are tasked with leading the joint effort, which will bridge the services’ major avenues for CJADC2 experimentation — the Army’s Project Convergence and the Air Force’s Advanced Battle Management System.

Over the next 60 days, the two services will formulate a plan to connect the Project Convergence and ABMS exercises, and ensure data can be transmitted along their platforms, said Lt. Gen. Clinton Hinote, who leads Air Force’s strategy office.

But that doesn’t mean the services are on a path to adopt the same systems architecture, data standards and interfaces.

“What the Army and the Air Force are agreeing to is, we’re going to be able to see their data, they’re going to be able to see our data. And as much as we can, we will come up with common standards,” Hinote said in an Oct. 15 interview. “But even if we can’t come up with common standards, we realize that translators are going to be something that will be with us for a long time, and we will build the translators necessary to make sure we can share.”

The main point of the discussions was to avoid redundancies, McConville told Defense News on Oct. 15.

“We basically laid out what we’re doing, what they were doing, what the joint force was doing,” he said. “We don’t need to have duplications. We don’t want to have gaps in what we’re doing and what we agreed to.”

Air Force Maj. Nicholas Tensing monitors a computer in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment Sept 2, 2020, at Joint Base Andrews, Md. (Senior Airman Daniel Hernandez/U.S. Air Force)
Air Force Maj. Nicholas Tensing monitors a computer in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment Sept 2, 2020, at Joint Base Andrews, Md. (Senior Airman Daniel Hernandez/U.S. Air Force)

Ultimately, such close coordination between Army and Air Force leaders only happens once in a generation, said Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, who pointed to the formation of the AirLand Battle doctrine in the 1980s as the last time they worked together so intimately on a new war-fighting concept.

“I’m very encouraged that we have the Air Staff and the Army Staff investing countless hours,” he said. “We’re laying down the path to get there. And it really starts with cloud architecture, common data standards, and command-and-control systems that you can wire together so that they can share information at the speed of relevance. So that whether it’s an F-35 (fighter jet) or an artillery battery, they communicate with each other to prosecute enemy targets.”

Battle of the AIs

The Army’s and the Air Force’s goals are roughly the same. The services want to be able to take data from any of the services’ sensors — whether that’s the radar of an E-3 early airborne warning aircraft or the video collected by an MQ-1C Gray Eagle drone — and detect a threat, fuse it with other information coming in from other platforms, use artificial intelligence to provide a list of options to commanders and ultimately send accurate target data to the weapon systems that will shoot it, all in a drastically shortened timeline.

Over the past year, the Air Force held three ABMS demonstrations, with the most recent taking place Sept. 15-25 alongside U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s Exercise Valiant Shield. So far, the service has tested out technology that allows the F-35 and F-22 jets to send data to each other despite their use of different waveforms. It also test tech that connects an AC-130 gunship with SpaceX’s Starlink constellation, and used a high-velocity projectile shot from a howitzer to shoot down a surrogate cruise missile.

All of those demonstrations were enabled by 5G connectivity, cloud computing and competing battle management systems that fused together data and applied machine-learning algorithms.

Meanwhile, during the Army’s first Project Convergence exercise held in September, the service tested a prototype of the Extended Range Cannon Artillery, fused data through a new system known as Prometheus and used artificial intelligence to recommend options for shooting a target.

A Marine Corps F-35 also participated in some tests, receiving targeting information that originated from a satellite, then passing on information from its own sensors to an Army AI system known as FIRES Synchronization to Optimize Responses in Multi-Domain Operations — or FIRESTORM.

Joint Army and Air Force experiments could begin as early as March 2021, said Portia Crowe, the chief data officer of the Army’s Network Cross-Functional Team at Army Futures Command. Crowe, who spoke during a Oct. 14 webinar hosted by C4ISRNET, did not elaborate on what would be tested.

Much of the early collaboration between the Army’s Project Convergence and the Air Force’s ABMS will likely involve plugging in new technologies from one service and seeing if they can successfully send data to the other’s nodes in the experiment, Hinote said.

But that won’t be “where the magic happens,” he noted. “The magic is going to happen in the flow of information, and then the development of that information into something that looks new” through the use of artificial intelligence.

Felix Jonathan, a robotics engineer from Carnegie Mellon University, inputs data into an autonomous ground vehicle control system during Project Convergence at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz., which took place Aug. 11-Sept. 18, 2020. (Spc. Carlos Cuebas Fantauzzi/U.S. Army)
Felix Jonathan, a robotics engineer from Carnegie Mellon University, inputs data into an autonomous ground vehicle control system during Project Convergence at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz., which took place Aug. 11-Sept. 18, 2020. (Spc. Carlos Cuebas Fantauzzi/U.S. Army)

Though Project Convergence and ABMS are still in their infancies, the Army and the Air Force have adopted different philosophies for incorporating machine learning into the “kill chain” — the sensors and weapon systems that detect, identify and prosecute a threat. While the Air Force is largely experimenting with solutions made by contractors like Anduril Industries and Palantir, the Army is mostly relying on government-owned platforms created by government software coders.

“One of the things that I see as being an incredibly interesting exercise — I don’t know if this will happen this year or next year, but I’m sure it will happen — is let’s compare what we were able to do in the government, using government civilians who are coders and who are programming these machine-learning algorithms to come up with the top three actions (to take in response to a given threat),” Hinote said. “And let’s compare that to what (private) companies are doing and their intellectual property. And then, if that gives us insight, then what is the business model that we want to propose?”

But as those technologies mature, Hinote said, the services must answer difficult doctrinal and technical questions: How much should the government be involved in shaping the responses given by the algorithm, and how does it balance that requirement with industry’s ability to move fast? When an AI gives a commander a list of military options, who owns that data?

And how can military operators know the underlying assumptions an AI system is making when it presents a threat to commanders and a set of options for countering it? If they don’t understand why an AI system is recommending a course of action, should commanders feel comfortable using lethal force?

“How do we know enough about the machine learning and algorithms so that their output is useful, but not a surprise to us? And if it is a surprise, how did it get to that surprise? Because if you don’t know that, you’re going to feel very weird about using it for lethal force,” Hinote said.

“Right now we’re kind of feeling our way down that path to see how much trust are we going to have in these algorithms, and developing trust is going to be something you’re going to see over and over and over in both Project Convergence and ABMS onramps.”

Major barriers

The Army and the Air Force aren’t the only military entities driving to make CJADC2 a reality. The Navy recently launched its own effort — Project Overmatch — and tapped Rear Adm. Douglas Small on Oct. 1 to lead it.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday has said it is the service’s second-most important priority, falling behind only the Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine.

Coast Guardsmen simulate interdicting a jammer on a vessel in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment in the Gulf of Mexico on Sept. 3, 2020. (Staff Sgt. Haley Phillips/U.S. Air Force)
Coast Guardsmen simulate interdicting a jammer on a vessel in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment in the Gulf of Mexico on Sept. 3, 2020. (Staff Sgt. Haley Phillips/U.S. Air Force)

In totality, the U.S. military will have at least three separate CJADC2 initiatives, each fielding their own hardware and software.

There are good reasons for each service retaining their own programs, according to Hinote, as each domain presents unique challenges, and each service organizes itself differently to project power on land, at sea or in the air.

“The Army has been very concerned over scale. They see each of their soldiers as being a node inside the network, and therefore you could have millions of nodes. And they’re very concerned that if this was only Air Force-led, that the scale couldn’t be reached — we would not have the ability to plug in all of those soldiers and nodes in the network,” Hinote said, adding that it’s a valid concern.

He added that the Air Force also has its challenges — namely the difficulty of sending data over long distances, and having to connect aircraft and sensors that may be far away from a target.

But the result is three large, complicated acquisition programs that will need billions of dollars in funding — and potentially compete against each other for money. To further complicate the issue, the military’s existing funding mechanisms aren’t optimized for the fast-paced, iterative experimentation and procurement the services seek.

One way to overcome this might involve creating a Pentagon-wide fund for CJADC2, and then split it among the services, Hinote said. Another option might include designating one service as the executive agent, giving that force organizing authority and the power of the purse. But both come with drawbacks.

“(There are) different models out there, but none of them seem to really fit,” Hinote said. “And so we have been having talks with especially the appropriations defense (committees on) the Senate and House side on what would it look like for a modern military to buy a capability like this, and what would the taxpayers need for understanding that this is good stewardship. And that has not been decided.”

.(tagsToTranslate)Ryan McCarthy(t)James McConville(t)Clinton Hinote(t)Advanced Battle Management System(t)Project Convergence(t)Combined Joint All Domain Command and Control(t)Charles Q. Brown
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The Army and Air Force are finally on the same page with a plan to connect the military. What happens next? https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next/ https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 19:36:09 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/the-army-and-air-force-are-finally-on-the-same-page-with-a-plan-to-connect-the-military-what-happens-next/ 2020-10-20 19:27:08
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WASHINGTON — After years of sometimes contentious discussions, the Army and Air Force have adopted a plan to work together on what they are now calling Combined Joint All-Domain Command and Control — the idea that all of the U.S. military’s sensors and shooters must be able to send data to each other seamlessly and instantaneously.

The agreement, signed Sept. 29 by Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Brown and Army Chief of Staff Gen. James McConville, paves the way for closer collaboration on “mutual standards for data sharing and service interfacing” that will ultimately allow the services to ensure that new communications gear, networks and artificial intelligence systems they field can connect to each other, reducing the risk of incompatibility.

But much is still unknown, including the exact nature of the Army-Air Force collaboration and how much technology the services will be willing to share.

Army Futures Command and the Air Force’s office of strategy, integration and requirements are tasked with leading the joint effort, which will bridge the services’ major avenues for CJADC2 experimentation — the Army’s Project Convergence and the Air Force’s Advanced Battle Management System.

Over the next 60 days, the two services will formulate a plan to connect the Project Convergence and ABMS exercises, and ensure data can be transmitted along their platforms, said Lt. Gen. Clinton Hinote, who leads Air Force’s strategy office.

But that doesn’t mean the services are on a path to adopt the same systems architecture, data standards and interfaces.

“What the Army and the Air Force are agreeing to is, we’re going to be able to see their data, they’re going to be able to see our data. And as much as we can, we will come up with common standards,” Hinote said in an Oct. 15 interview. “But even if we can’t come up with common standards, we realize that translators are going to be something that will be with us for a long time, and we will build the translators necessary to make sure we can share.”

The main point of the discussions was to avoid redundancies, McConville told Defense News on Oct. 15.

“We basically laid out what we’re doing, what they were doing, what the joint force was doing,” he said. “We don’t need to have duplications. We don’t want to have gaps in what we’re doing and what we agreed to.”

Air Force Maj. Nicholas Tensing monitors a computer in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment Sept 2, 2020, at Joint Base Andrews, Md. (Senior Airman Daniel Hernandez/U.S. Air Force)
Air Force Maj. Nicholas Tensing monitors a computer in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment Sept 2, 2020, at Joint Base Andrews, Md. (Senior Airman Daniel Hernandez/U.S. Air Force)

Ultimately, such close coordination between Army and Air Force leaders only happens once in a generation, said Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy, who pointed to the formation of the AirLand Battle doctrine in the 1980s as the last time they worked together so intimately on a new war-fighting concept.

“I’m very encouraged that we have the Air Staff and the Army Staff investing countless hours,” he said. “We’re laying down the path to get there. And it really starts with cloud architecture, common data standards, and command-and-control systems that you can wire together so that they can share information at the speed of relevance. So that whether it’s an F-35 (fighter jet) or an artillery battery, they communicate with each other to prosecute enemy targets.”

The Army’s and the Air Force’s goals are roughly the same. The services want to be able to take data from any of the services’ sensors — whether that’s the radar of an E-3 early airborne warning aircraft or the video collected by an MQ-1C Gray Eagle drone — and detect a threat, fuse it with other information coming in from other platforms, use artificial intelligence to provide a list of options to commanders and ultimately send accurate target data to the weapon systems that will shoot it, all in a drastically shortened timeline.

Over the past year, the Air Force held three ABMS demonstrations, with the most recent taking place Sept. 15-25 alongside U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s Exercise Valiant Shield. So far, the service has tested out technology that allows the F-35 and F-22 jets to send data to each other despite their use of different waveforms. It also test tech that connects an AC-130 gunship with SpaceX’s Starlink constellation, and used a high-velocity projectile shot from a howitzer to shoot down a surrogate cruise missile.

All of those demonstrations were enabled by 5G connectivity, cloud computing and competing battle management systems that fused together data and applied machine-learning algorithms.

Meanwhile, during the Army’s first Project Convergence exercise held in September, the service tested a prototype of the Extended Range Cannon Artillery, fused data through a new system known as Prometheus and used artificial intelligence to recommend options for shooting a target.

A Marine Corps F-35 also participated in some tests, receiving targeting information that originated from a satellite, then passing on information from its own sensors to an Army AI system known as FIRES Synchronization to Optimize Responses in Multi-Domain Operations — or FIRESTORM.

Joint Army and Air Force experiments could begin as early as March 2021, said Portia Crowe, the chief data officer of the Army’s Network Cross-Functional Team at Army Futures Command. Crowe, who spoke during a Oct. 14 webinar hosted by C4ISRNET, did not elaborate on what would be tested.

Much of the early collaboration between the Army’s Project Convergence and the Air Force’s ABMS will likely involve plugging in new technologies from one service and seeing if they can successfully send data to the other’s nodes in the experiment, Hinote said.

But that won’t be “where the magic happens,” he noted. “The magic is going to happen in the flow of information, and then the development of that information into something that looks new” through the use of artificial intelligence.

Felix Jonathan, a robotics engineer from Carnegie Mellon University, inputs data into an autonomous ground vehicle control system during Project Convergence at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz., which took place Aug. 11-Sept. 18, 2020. (Spc. Carlos Cuebas Fantauzzi/U.S. Army)
Felix Jonathan, a robotics engineer from Carnegie Mellon University, inputs data into an autonomous ground vehicle control system during Project Convergence at Yuma Proving Ground, Ariz., which took place Aug. 11-Sept. 18, 2020. (Spc. Carlos Cuebas Fantauzzi/U.S. Army)

Though Project Convergence and ABMS are still in their infancies, the Army and the Air Force have adopted different philosophies for incorporating machine learning into the “kill chain” — the sensors and weapon systems that detect, identify and prosecute a threat. While the Air Force is largely experimenting with solutions made by contractors like Anduril Industries and Palantir, the Army is mostly relying on government-owned platforms created by government software coders.

“One of the things that I see as being an incredibly interesting exercise — I don’t know if this will happen this year or next year, but I’m sure it will happen — is let’s compare what we were able to do in the government, using government civilians who are coders and who are programming these machine-learning algorithms to come up with the top three actions (to take in response to a given threat),” Hinote said. “And let’s compare that to what (private) companies are doing and their intellectual property. And then, if that gives us insight, then what is the business model that we want to propose?”

But as those technologies mature, Hinote said, the services must answer difficult doctrinal and technical questions: How much should the government be involved in shaping the responses given by the algorithm, and how does it balance that requirement with industry’s ability to move fast? When an AI gives a commander a list of military options, who owns that data?

And how can military operators know the underlying assumptions an AI system is making when it presents a threat to commanders and a set of options for countering it? If they don’t understand why an AI system is recommending a course of action, should commanders feel comfortable using lethal force?

“How do we know enough about the machine learning and algorithms so that their output is useful, but not a surprise to us? And if it is a surprise, how did it get to that surprise? Because if you don’t know that, you’re going to feel very weird about using it for lethal force,” Hinote said.

“Right now we’re kind of feeling our way down that path to see how much trust are we going to have in these algorithms, and developing trust is going to be something you’re going to see over and over and over in both Project Convergence and ABMS onramps.”

The Army and the Air Force aren’t the only military entities driving to make CJADC2 a reality. The Navy recently launched its own effort — Project Overmatch — and tapped Rear Adm. Douglas Small on Oct. 1 to lead it.

Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Michael Gilday has said it is the service’s second-most important priority, falling behind only the Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine.

Coast Guardsmen simulate interdicting a jammer on a vessel in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment in the Gulf of Mexico on Sept. 3, 2020. (Staff Sgt. Haley Phillips/U.S. Air Force)
Coast Guardsmen simulate interdicting a jammer on a vessel in support of an Advanced Battle Management System experiment in the Gulf of Mexico on Sept. 3, 2020. (Staff Sgt. Haley Phillips/U.S. Air Force)

In totality, the U.S. military will have at least three separate CJADC2 initiatives, each fielding their own hardware and software.

There are good reasons for each service retaining their own programs, according to Hinote, as each domain presents unique challenges, and each service organizes itself differently to project power on land, at sea or in the air.

“The Army has been very concerned over scale. They see each of their soldiers as being a node inside the network, and therefore you could have millions of nodes. And they’re very concerned that if this was only Air Force-led, that the scale couldn’t be reached — we would not have the ability to plug in all of those soldiers and nodes in the network,” Hinote said, adding that it’s a valid concern.

He added that the Air Force also has its challenges — namely the difficulty of sending data over long distances, and having to connect aircraft and sensors that may be far away from a target.

But the result is three large, complicated acquisition programs that will need billions of dollars in funding — and potentially compete against each other for money. To further complicate the issue, the military’s existing funding mechanisms aren’t optimized for the fast-paced, iterative experimentation and procurement the services seek.

One way to overcome this might involve creating a Pentagon-wide fund for CJADC2, and then split it among the services, Hinote said. Another option might include designating one service as the executive agent, giving that force organizing authority and the power of the purse. But both come with drawbacks.

“(There are) different models out there, but none of them seem to really fit,” Hinote said. “And so we have been having talks with especially the appropriations defense (committees on) the Senate and House side on what would it look like for a modern military to buy a capability like this, and what would the taxpayers need for understanding that this is good stewardship. And that has not been decided.”

.(tagsToTranslate)Ryan McCarthy(t)James McConville(t)Clinton Hinote(t)Advanced Battle Management System(t)Project Convergence(t)Combined Joint All Domain Command and Control(t)Charles Q. Brown
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Rheinmetall eyes do-over in new pitch of its Lynx vehicle to the US Army https://unockia.xyz/rheinmetall-eyes-do-over-in-new-pitch-of-its-lynx-vehicle-to-the-us-army/ https://unockia.xyz/rheinmetall-eyes-do-over-in-new-pitch-of-its-lynx-vehicle-to-the-us-army/#respond Tue, 20 Oct 2020 15:32:10 +0000 https://unockia.xyz/rheinmetall-eyes-do-over-in-new-pitch-of-its-lynx-vehicle-to-the-us-army/ 2020-10-20 15:24:24
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COLOGNE, Germany – Rheinmetall is teaming with Textron Systems to pitch the Lynx KF41 vehicle as a Bradley replacement to the U.S. Army, the company announced on Tuesday.

The campaign marks the second time that the Düsseldorf, Germany-based company is targeting the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle program following an unsuccessful attempt last year that eventually saw the ground service halt the race.

This time around, Rheinmetall is putting greater emphasis on a U.S. footprint, led by its growing American Rheinmetall Vehicles subsidiary based in Sterling Heights, Michigan. Textron, as the newcomer on Team Lynx, is meant to be front and center when it comes to manufacturing and robotics capabilities.

“Textron Systems’ Slidell, Louisiana, vehicle production facility has supported more than 15 armored vehicle programs of record supporting over 20 countries,” senior vice president Henry Finneral was quoted as saying in a statement. “We stand ready to support the team and the US Army and deliver a trusted platform for the future.”

“This teaming agreement brings together two of the world’s leading providers of defense industry solutions in order to offer the U.S. Army an OMFV that’s second to none,” said Matt Warnick, managing director at American Rheinmetall Vehicles.

Raytheon remains part of the team.

Executives hope that the new Army competition will give all bidders more leeway in fine-tuning their eventual offers to the service’s requirements. That marks a contrast to the previous acquisition attempt, where the ground service essentially wanted specific features already built into prototype vehicles, with little time for companies to adjust.

This time around, the Army plans to downsize to five bidders, then three, before picking an eventual winner. A final request for proposals is expected late this year or early next.

Service officials have put competitors on notice that an open architecture in the vehicle design will be at a premium, a feature that Rheinmetall touted in its bid notice today.

“The network is almost more important in some ways than building the combat vehicles,” Maj. Gen. Brian Cummings, program executive officer of ground combat systems, told Defense News in an interview ahead of the Association of the U.S. Army’s virtual conference, which ended last week.

Rheinmetall had previously planned to present the teaming arrangement with Textron at this year’s AUSA show if the event had taken place in-person.

Jen Judson in Washington contributed to this report.

.(tagsToTranslate)Rheinmetall(t)US Army(t)OMFV(t)Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle(t)Sterling Heights(t)Textron(t)Raytheon(t)Slidell(t)Bradley
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