Quantico Tactical

Archive for the ‘Concepts’ Category

USSOCOM Seeks Advanced Technologies

Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

USSOCOM Science and Technology Directorate’s (SOF AT&L-ST) has issued addendum J of their Broad Agency Announcement for advanced technologies. The directorate’s vision is to Discover, Enable, and Transition technologies to provide an asymmetric advantage for Special Operations Forces (SOF). SOF AT&L-ST has identified specific technology Areas of Interest to accelerate the delivery of innovative capabilities to the SOF warfighter.

Fires/Scalable Effects Weapons (SEW):
USSOCOM seeks to study, design, develop, and demonstrate advanced technologies associated with the application of fire from non-lethal through lethal. These technologies include, but are not limited to, weapons, munitions, and fire control, with the major development goals being lighter weight, lower cost of ownership throughout the entire lifecycle of the product, and increased effectiveness. Highly desired are:

Improved Effectiveness of Fragmentation Weapons. Alternatives to existing fragmentation weapons, or weapons where the casing is shattered upon detonation, and identifying munitions with greater effectiveness while applying the FBI standard for bullets (10-12 in penetration of tissue simulant) in the design of fragmentation munitions. The technology and approaches should assess what industries such as aerospace, automobile manufacturing and other non-ordnance suppliers have available or in development that applies to the needs. Specifically desired are:

Analysis of alternatives on potential of fragmentation weapons.

Enhanced 40mm x 46xx fragmentation grenade. USSOCOM is interested in an enhanced 40mm x 46mm cartridge propellant system that optimizes the acceleration curve enabling heavier payloads at current ranges or current payloads a longer range while remaining within current pressure and recoil limits. Peak chamber pressure is approximately 2320-3000 psi depending on barrel material and thickness. Recoil safety limit is 45 ft-lbs to 50 ft-lbs. USSOCOM is interested in increasing the lethal area of a 40mm x 46mm fragmentation projectile with enhanced energetics and optimize controlled fragmentation. USSOCOM defines lethal area as having a minimum of 2 fragments per square meter and 90% of those fragments penetrating 12 inches of 10% tissue simulant.

Payload Development. Technologies that can be employed as a payload to stop/disable maritime vessels and that can be delivered from an unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV). The payload can deliver a non-reversible effect, however, the effect should not betray hostile intent. Technologies/payloads that can be transported in a UUV compartment and can be exposed to a harsh, marine environment. Technologies/payloads should stop a vessel less than 50 meters long.

Human Performance
USSOCOM seeks to conduct research, design, development and demonstration of capabilities that enhance physiological, physical, psychological, and intellectual performance, and improve resistance to disease, stress, or injury caused by the demands of sustained operations in extreme environments. Highly desired are:

Performance Enhancements. Innovative solutions that will optimize human performance, reduce recovery time, and increase peak performance sustainability, including increased endurance, strength, energy, agility, enhanced senses, provide restorative effects of sleep, and enhance tolerance to environmental extremes. The technologies can be demonstrated through studies that provide proof of concepts or through solutions demonstrated in humans that quantify operational performance improvements. Technologies should not consist of new software applications, wearables, and additional studies on existing nutraceuticals that have been previously researched in depth. SOF AT&L-ST is specifically interested in:

Genomics, epigenetics, proteomics, and synthetic biology

Nutraceuticals and/or pharmaceuticals

Enhancing metabolic efficiency

Methods of improving oxygen delivery to muscles

Reducing the potential for musculoskeletal injury

Increasing tolerance to pain

Cognitive Enhancement

Sleep Restoration

Submissions should consider methods of demonstrating safety and efficacy, and a regulatory approval strategy if required. Proposed solutions do not have to be FDA cleared as a prerequisite, but nutraceuticals and/or pharmaceuticals must be US-sourced. Submitters should have access or partners with access to lab facilities.

Protection
USSOCOM seeks to conduct research, development and demonstration of advanced technologies associated with protecting the future dismounted SOF Operator. These technologies include, but are not limited to, ballistic body armor, helmets, and eye protection, with the major development goals being lighter weight and increased protection. SOF AT&L-ST is specifically interested in chemistry and microstructure improvements for advanced armor materials, including the following:

Mechanical property enhancements in existing armor ceramics through microstructure modifications

Development of new ceramic armor materials

Continued optimization of fiber-based armor materials, to include aramids, ultrahigh molecular weight polyethylene, and their associated resin systems

Investigations into additive manufacturing of armor materials (metals, polymers, and ceramics)

Thin, lightweight and low-cost transparent armor (polymer, glass and ceramic based solutions)

While the main focus of the research should be development of advanced armor materials, other considerations include projectiles of interest (7.62 x 39 mm MSC at 2400-2450 ft/s, 7.62 x 39 mm API BZ at 2400-2450 ft/s, 7.62 x 54R mm API B32 at 2850-2900 ft/s, and 7.62 x 51 mm AP M993 at 3050-3100 ft/s), a final system thickness of less than 1.0 inch, backface signature performance of less than 44.0 millimeters at the velocities listed above, and an ultimate goal of areal density reduction (with similar or improved ballistic performance).

Optical Electronics
USSOCOM seeks to conduct research, design, develop, and demonstrate advanced technologies associated with target engagement, intelligence, surveillance & reconnaissance, and neutralization of opposing force capabilities. These technologies include, but are not limited to, optics, lasers, sensors, and radar, with the major development goals being transition to the field within 5 years, backwards compatible with existing infrastructure, and do not require a significant cost investment to produce and sustain. SOF AT&L-ST is specifically interested in:

Observer to Point of Interest: Ground-to-Ground/Air-to-Ground

Man Portable Equipment and Turrets / Pods to Tower-Test

Characterization Abilities: Ability to identify and detect persons or objects of interest, identification of and thru material layers

Technologies that can be employed to effect long range enemy identification, to include laser vibrometry. Specific distances have yet to be determined, but should work outside the signature ranges of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platforms to ensure surreptitious collection

Interested parties must submit whitepapers for this BAA Addendum which closes on June 5, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. EDT. USSOCOM may select some candidates which will then be funded up to $3m and given up to three years of development.

For full details, visit www.fbo.gov.

Dressed To Kill

Tuesday, February 16th, 2016

This image from the September 28, 1959 issue of ‘Life’ magazine depicts a developmental US Army clothing system reportedly intended for wear on a nuclear battlefield. While the gloves, mask and coveralls are interesting, what is really cool is the helmet, complete with IR goggles.

The plastic helmet integrates the AN/PRC-34 radio, the developmental Soldier Radio of its day and an attempt to replace the large, walkie-talkie PRC-6 squad radios. The two studs along the crown of the helmet hold the antenna in place when not in use. In this photo, the antenna is deployed. Between the M-1 helmet-style webbing and the shell was a snag of wires.

But the IR goggles are the real treat here, considering this photo is coming up on 60 years old. First off, they are binocular and mount in a similar fashion to what we still do today.  You can also see the battery pack at the rear of the helmet.  A later version of the helmet was developed that offered some ballistic protection as well accommodations for a newer radio variant, the PRC-36.  However, this radio was not integrated directly into the helmet.

ADS C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator – Part III – C4ISR Technology

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

ADS took a look at one of the issues that continues to face deployed troops; access to C4ISR feeds. They assembled a team of industry partners including Granite Tactical Vehicles, FLIR, Harris and SYNEXXUS to create a C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator.

Using COTS items, this team has been able to streamline the way Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and and Reconnaissance data is delivered and displayed to the personnel in the vehicle. It’s now easier to see, interpret and share.

FLIR offers these enhancements to the Demonstrator:

FLIR Systems DV/SA provides Driver Visual Enhancement and Situational Awareness has been used on both wheeled and tracked platforms. It offers the following suite of options:

• Dual Sensor with both thermal and day cameras (enabling blending)
• Single Sensor with thermal camera.
• Cameras with motorized protective lid and cleaning brush.
• 55 degree field of view for increased performance.
• 90 degree field of view for wide angle situational awareness.

FLIR Systems TALON:
• High-performance multi-sensor thermal imaging system in a compact, lightweight 9” package.
• This system offers up to six simultaneous payloads including: IR, Color, CCD, EMCCD, Laser Pointer or Laser Illuminator, LRF and IMU.
• The FLIR Systems TALON offers operators a continuous zoom 640 x 480 infrared IR camera and 2 EO options (color and color/ EMCCD combination) which permit high resolution imagery both day and night

Harris is well known for providing communications systems and the C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator is no different with the integration of the AN/PRC-117G.
• JTRS Certified, NSA Type-1 Certified, JITC Certified for Narrowband Interoperability Assessment and compliance with DAMA standards
• Includes SINCGARS, Havequick II, VHF/UHF AM and FM, High Performance Waveform (HPW), MIL-STD-188-181B SATCOM.
• Uses the Harris Adaptive Networking Wideband Waveform (ANW2) for high bandwidth data operation and is designed for future upgrade to the Soldier Radio Waveform (SRW)

If FLIR is the eyes of the system and Harris the ears, SYNEXXUS provides the central nervous system.

The ELECTRONIC KEEL® V5.3 is a modular, data/video distribution architecture, designed for rugged reliability with open standard industry inputs. The EKEEL’s open operating system and open published API and GUI software provide the operator with access to platform sensors, radios, applications and other government furnished equipment (GFE) or customer furnished equipment (CFE) with single button actuation and intuitive interface. All platform sub-systems are able to be viewed, controlled and shared from a single interface through one or more independently controlled and simultaneously viewed resistive-touch, multi-function displays. Any government provided software and applications can be used in conjunction with or as an alternative to the system’s software suite.
• Combat-Proven, TRL-9 Rated Digital Backbone
• Operationally Deployed in Theater Since 2009
• Modular, Open Hardware and Software Interfaces
• Access, Control and Network All Platform GFE, Apps and Systems
• Increased Situational Awareness, Decreased SWaP

In this ADStv video, representatives from each of the vendors discuss the capabilities they bring to this project.

With the integration of these different, yet complimentary, capabilities into an upgraded, armored vehicle platform, the ADS C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator has shown a system that doesn’t suffer from the band-aid fixes that have plagued the legacy HMMWV program over the years. The interior is streamlined and future capabilities can more easily be integrated into the architecture. This is certainly a viable path forward to refit the existing HMMWV fleet with new capabilities.

For more information visit www.ADSinc.com.

ADS C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator – Part II – The Vehicle

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

During Warrior Expo, ADS Inc exhibited a new concept demonstrator that integrates C4ISR technologies directly into a lightly armored vehicle based on the legacy HMMWV. While the demonstrator is packed with a variety of Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and and Reconnaissance capabilities, it would mean nothing if you couldn’t protect the men and women inside the vehicle. That’s where project partner Granite Tactical Vehicles steps in. They’ve developed a set of five upgrade packages for the HMMWV. The High Mobility, Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle has been with us for over 30 years. Over this time, they’ve applied a variety of fixes to the vehicle, but fundamentally there 25 deficiencies in the design.

Over time, the HMMWV evolved from this simple replacement for the Jeep to an armored battle taxi. Along the way, it became overweight and underpowered.

HMMWV comparison

Engineers at Granite Tactical Vehicles have created five kits to enhance the vehicle’s capabilities:

1) GTV’s proprietary up-armored crew capsule offers 360 degree blast / ballistic protection with underbody armor and a V-Hull. That V-Hull is one of the most effective features to mitigate the effects of IEDs.
2) Upgraded brake calipers and larger rotors, upgraded shocks, spring mounts, lift kit (centered front differential allowing 4 identical half-shafts), frame enhancements and suspension to support up-armored capsule and return vehicle to expected mobility.
3) Upgraded turbo-charged 6.5 liter diesel engine.
4) Upgraded 4L85 transmission, which is critical to overcoming torque deficiency of standard Humvee.
5) Upgraded cooling / radiator system to ensure larger engine is efficiently and effectively cooled during operation.

In fact, application of these five kits, not only enhanced the capabilities of the HMMWV (of which we have thousands still in service) but also weighs in at 200 lbs below the current UpArmored variant. As funding for programs like the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle are reprogrammed for other needs, upgrades such as this, to existing equipment are a great way to extend their lifecycle as well as enhance capabilities.

Justin Boyle of ADS goes over the five upgrade kits for the HMMWV in this short video from ADStv.

For more information visit www.ADSinc.com.

ADS C4ISR Vehicle Concept Demonstrator – Part I – Overview

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

During Warrior Expo, ADS Inc exhibited a new concept demonstrator that integrates C4ISR technologies directly into a lightly armored vehicle based on the legacy uparmored HMMWV. For those unfamiliar, C4ISR includes Command, Control, Communications, Computers as well as Intelligence, Surveillance and and Reconnaissance capabilities. It’s not that this is a dedicated command and control vehicle or even a scout vehicle but rather, ADS recognizes that over the last 10 years, there has been a boom in the deployment of new C4ISR technologies. The real hurdle is delivering this disparate information to the end user and then, making sense of all of it.

ADS teamed with Granite Tactical Vehicles, FLIR, Harris and SYNEXXUS. Everything here is Commercial-Off-The-Shelf. It’s just been configured in such a way that the whole is greater than the sum of its individual components.

If you were at Warrior East, I hope you had a chance to check out this vehicle. If not, ADStv created three video segments that we will use to show what it’s all about. Below, John Fristachi from ADS of ADS discusses the project.

To learn more contact ADS Inc.

Liberty Week

Sunday, June 30th, 2013

This week will mark the 237th year since our Founding Fathers declared our Independence from mother England. The reason? Why, liberty, of course. So why not use it as a theme over the course of the week?

So I leave it to you. If we are going to discuss Liberty, let’s choose a few topics and take them on, one per day. What say you? Got any ideas?