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11 Feb 21. Spain’s Navantia joins industry team for European Patrol Corvette. Spanish shipbuilder Navantia has sealed its participation in the upcoming development of the European Control Corvette, a signature naval program that is part of the European Union’s defense efforts.
Company executives signed a memorandum of understanding to that effect with the Naviris consortium, the companies announced Feb. 11. Naviris is a 50-50 joint venture between France’s Naval Group and Italy’s Fincantieri.
The notional European Patrol Corvette is meant to be a coast guard-type ship able to perform missions of fighting pirates and smugglers as well as border control and show-of-force trips in Europe’s waters. At 100 meters and 3,000 tons, it will replace “several classes of ships, from patrol vessels to light frigates” in participating countries come 2027, the companies said.
The program has been advancing through the EU’s so-called Permanent Structured Cooperation framework, or PESCO, whose goal is to create joint capabilities across the continent. Companies participating in PESCO projects have a shot at subsidies flowing from the multibillion-dollar European Defence Fund.
Italy has the lead on the patrol corvette project. The governments of France, Spain and Greece have already signed up, and Portugal is reportedly considering doing the same.
All participating navies are expected to submit their design requirements this year, according to the Naviris announcement. The idea is to find “commonality of solutions and modularity for adaptions to national requirements,” the company said.
“The ambition of the project … is to include other European partners to integrate technological bricks, which correspond to innovation streams matching with national EPC requirements and European Commission strategy and guidelines.”
The European Defence Agency announced earlier this year that it would lend project management and related support to the program. (Source: Defense News)
11 Feb 21. NAVWAR looking for emerging cyber research and development. The Navy is searching for solutions from industry that can fill needed gaps in cyber warfare capabilities to secure weapon systems and exploit cyberspace.
The Naval Information Warfare Systems Command Cyber Warfare Detachment is looking for white papers for research and development efforts on resilient cyber warfare capabilities, according to a Feb. 11 posting to a government contracting website.
The proposals should offer advancements or improvements to fill gaps, the notice stated, listing eight buckets of technological interests:
- Size-, weight- and power-sensitive cyber resiliency for real-time operating systems and aviation warfare environment
- Access point identification, prioritization and defense
- Cyber-electronic warfare convergent capabilities
- Full acquisition cycle cybersecurity measures
- Cyber test, inspection and incident response concepts
- Cyber warning system techniques
- Cyber fault, risk and threat assessment methodologies
- Resilient network concepts
NAVWAR provided a more in-depth list of 36 specific areas, including full-spectrum cyber response and enablement capabilities for multiple weapon system kill chains, sacrificial infrastructure and reactive cyber “armor,” deceptive/misinformation software and hardware capabilities, threat attribution, identification and geolocation, software defined radio protections and capabilities networking, tools for weapon system cyber protection teams for incident response and inspection, and suppression and discovery of malware command and control mechanisms to include triggering, reconnaissance and logic bombs. The command will accept responses until Feb. 10, 2022, and review them quarterly. The next phase of the program will be by invitation. (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
10 Feb 21. USAF considering new “Prime” programmes. The US Air Force (USAF) is considering starting new “Prime” small business outreach programmes for energy, microelectronics, and gaming technologies.
Colonel Nathan Diller, AFWERX director, said on 10 February that the USAF will have further discussions about what an Energy Prime programme might resemble as the service had an energy challenge on 9 February. He said specific technologies that could be part of an Energy Prime include advanced storage opportunities and alternative transport methods.
The USAF is examining Prime opportunities in microelectronics for improved performance, ensuring secure technologies, and, in some cases, anti-tamper capability. Col Diller said microelectronics are growing increasingly critical in technologies such as ground vehicles and autonomous ground vehicles.
Col Diller said a Digital Prime, or Game Prime, would leverage technologies such as gaming to help the USAF better understand paths for acceleration through logistics. The USAF would use this prime effort to better harness digital engineering.
The service has already formally committed to a new Space Prime programme. Col Diller said this effort does not yet have a kickoff date.
Janes previously reported on 20 January that the USAF’s former acquisition executive, Will Roper, laid the foundation for supersonic transport to be the service’s next Prime effort. Col Diller said this supersonic transport small business outreach effort, Vector Prime, would look at the growing market for commercial supersonic and, potentially, quiet supersonic, technologies. (Source: Jane’s)
09 Feb 21. USMC seek new intel tool for public info online. The Marine Corps is developing an intelligence tool to analyze online public information about threats and asked industry to help pinpoint the right technology for these increasingly important open source reviews.
The Corps seeks to identify companies that provide the capability and discover if existing contacts or partnerships could streamline delivery of a system, according to a “sources sought” notice on a federal contracting website Feb. 8. The service wants to determine if its requirements are in line with best available commercial technology.
The Corps is modernizing its forces and formations to better posture itself to fight in the information sphere, trying to keep pace with adversaries that use the burgeoning amount of publicly shared information to their advantage for intelligence collection, information operations and cyber operations, the notice from the Corps stated.
With the proliferation of information available online, the military is trying to exploit open source intelligence more for what the Marine Corps calls operations in the information environment.
Currently, the Corps uses a system called Integrated Intelligence Platform, which provides an open source intelligence and a cyber common operational picture by rapidly surveying datasets, identifying hidden trends and producing intelligence.
The Marines are looking more holistically at the information environment through the lens of the Information Environment Enterprise, its blueprint for information environment. As the Corps reviewed needed modernizations, it realized that subordinate units such as Marine Corps Forces Cyberspace Command lack an agile, user-friendly platform to provide accurate, timely, cost-effective interoperability with joint forces ― to include the Integrated Intelligence Platform.
Now, the Corps is reaching out to industry for assistance.
The service wants the new system ― dubbed with the slightly different name of the Integrated Information Intelligence Platform ― to handle planning and direction, collection and processing, production and dissemination of publicly available information, and open source intelligence, according to the request to industry.
Specific desired capabilities for the platform include, attribution, edge analytics, commercial threat intelligence, geospatial selector discovery, graph analytics, dark web monitoring, social/media analytics, intelligence orchestration and dissemination, publicly available information data mining, and battlespace awareness and deployable functionality.
The platform isn’t intended to directly counter these capabilities, documents suggest, but will provide analytics and intelligence that in aggregate will help prevent effectiveness of adversary actions.
The system must also adhere to U.S. Cyber Command’s Joint Cyber Warfighting Architecture, which guides how the command develops its capabilities. Given that Cyber Command employs joint teams that conduct operations and intelligence within the larger information environment, the Corps stated the platform must be compatible with the command’s systems. Responses to the request for information are due Feb. 19, with an in-person industry day at Quantico planned for Feb. 23. (Source: Defense News)
REST OF THE WORLD
05 Feb 21. BAE, Safran, Nova Systems join forces for LAND 125 bid. The firms have formed a partnership to advance their bid for Defence’s Integrated Solider System program. BAE Systems Australia, Safran, and Nova Systems Australia and New Zealand have partnered to establish ‘Team SABRE’ — a co-operative formed to secure the contract for the Commonwealth government’s LAND 125 Phase 4 Integrated Soldier System (ISS) project.
Team SABRE aims to leverage BAE Systems’ robotic and autonomous platform capability, Safran’s experience supporting soldier modernisation projects, and Nova Systems’ ADF capability acquisition and realisation experience, to demonstrate suitability for the Defence program.
“Safran has decades of experience in delivering soldier modernisation projects of similar complexity around the world, including the French Army’s FELIN and CENTURION programs,” Alexis de Pelleport, Safran Pacific’s CEO, said. “The SABRE solution will provide the Australian dismounted solider with a capability and decision-making edge over any adversary, now and into the future.”
According to Team SABRE, the firms’ LAND 125 bid is centred on harnessing new technology to respond to “rapidly changing threat environments”, reducing the burden placed on modern soldiers.
“There is no off-the-shelf or turn-key solution to this challenging and complex project,” Steve Robinson, Nova Systems CEO, said.
“Nova Systems brings our considerable experience and know-how in delivering C4ISREW capabilities in Defence, and our credentials as a 100 per cent Australian owned and operated company to the team.
“Importantly, the sovereign capabilities Nova Systems is growing through Team SABRE will remain in country and will support future ADF capability realisation across all domains.”
BAE Systems Australia chief technology officer Brad Yelland said the prime is well placed to provide support for the design, development and delivery of autonomous solutions across the air, land and sea domains.
“As the land autonomy lead for the TAS-DCRC and in partnership with Australian Army on the M113 OCCV program, our skilled engineers and specialists will deliver next-generation sovereign autonomy technology to Team SABRE,” he said.
“Our diverse range of autonomous technologies also include highly advanced navigation, mapping, vision and safety systems.”
Team SABRE has committed to offering ICN opportunities and collaborating with local organisations if selected for the program. (Source: Defence Connect)
08 Feb 21. Defence to host maritime robotics competition. An international autonomous maritime robotic vehicles competition will be hosted by Defence in 2022, Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price has announced.
RobotX, a maritime robotics competition displaying the latest science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) research, will be hosted by the Department of Defence at the Sydney International Regatta Centre, Penrith, in NSW in November 2022.
Defence will work with US not-for-profit organisation RoboNation to deliver the competition, which will include networking opportunities between industry and STEM talent in academia.
The event will be supported by the Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre, which will supply a range of obstacle course challenges.
Challenges facilitated at RobotX will be funded by Defence’s Next Generation Technologies Fund, in partnership with RoboNation and the US Office of Naval Research.
The biennial event involves teams made up of students from multiple engineering disciplines from universities across the world.
Previous participants in the event have included Australia, the US, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, China and Singapore.
“Through our international alliances, Australia and our partners are developing the next generation of robotics specialists,” Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said.
“This competition enables students, academic institutions and industry partners to focus on the challenges of maritime autonomy – one of the fastest growing industrial pursuits of our time.
“Robotic autonomous systems and artificial intelligence (RAS-AI) will play an increasing role in future Australian Defence Force capability.”
Minister Price said the event forms part of the Royal Australian Navy’s RAS-AI Strategy 2040, which aims to encourages engagement in experimentation, co-operation and innovation at all levels.
“RobotX is a perfect environment for students to develop the skills necessary to support the future capability needs,” the minister added.
“I would encourage Australian businesses and universities to test themselves by being involved in this event.” (Source: Defence Connect)
05 Feb 21. HAL gets RFP for 70 HTT-40 basic trainer aircraft. State-owned aerospace and defence major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has received a request for proposal (RFP) from the Indian Air Force (IAF). State-owned aerospace and defence major Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) has received a request for proposal (RFP) from the Indian Air Force (IAF).
The RFP is for the procurement of 70 Hindustan Turbo Trainer-40 (HTT-40) basic trainer aircraft.
It was issued at the country’s premier defence and aerospace show ‘Aero India 2021’.
The documents were handed over by Indian Ministry of Defence director general (Acquisition) V L Kantha Rao and Deputy Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal Sandeep Singh to HAL chairman and managing director R Madhavan.
HAL noted that the RFP includes an option for the IAF to procure 38 additional trainers.
The HTT-40 is designed to replace the IAF’s fleet of HPT-32 Deepak basic trainers.
This fixed-wing aircraft has a bubble canopy and a T-tail configuration, as well as a retractable tricycle landing gear system with a steerable nose wheel.
With a maximum take-off weight of 2,800kg, the trainer can be configured to carry a gun, rockets and bombs to perform light combat and counter-insurgency missions. (Source: Google/airforce-technology.com)
American Panel Corporation (APC), a wholly owned subsidiary of Mercury Systems, Mission Division, Mission Displays is a custom display manufacturer, providing purpose-built optical display components installed in military defense avionics and vetronics systems and commercial aerospace platforms. Our customers include: Astronautics, Collins Aerospace, Elbit Systems, Korry Electronics, CMC Electronics, Scioteq, General Dynamics Land Systems, Honeywell, Industrial Electrical Engineering (IEE), Intellisense, Kent Modular Electronics (KME), SAAB, TECNOBIT, and others. We supply optical display components for the following platforms: M1A2 and M1A2 SEPV3/4 Abrams, M2 / M3 Bradley, and M1128 Stryker vehicles, Spanish Dragon 8×8 Armored Personnel Carrier (APC); Military and commercial aircrew worldwide use APC displays, including F-35, F-22, F-18, F-16, F-15, EF-1000 Typhoon, Mirage 2000, C-130, C-17, P-3, S-3, U-2, AH-64 Apache, V-22, as well as numerous other military and commercial aviation aircraft including all Boeing 717 through 787 aircraft and several Airbus aircraft. Mercury Systems, Mission Displays offers a wide range of panel size and configuration offerings, applying both legacy and developing new technologies to meet customer requirements.