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Archive for the ‘Contracts’ Category

US Army Purchases 20 MRZR X Vehicles for Soldier Trials

Friday, May 18th, 2018

MINNEAPOLIS and ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (May 17, 2018) — Team Polaris® and its advanced MRZR® X multi-mode vehicle platform have been selected by the U.S. Army to be one of the robotic systems used by infantry brigade combat teams for the next year of trials as part of the Squad Multipurpose Equipment Transport (SMET) program.

“The optionally-manned MRZR X helps ease the transition from manned vehicles to unmanned because it maintains the functionality, drivability and multi-mission capability of a traditional MRZR,” said Patrick Zech, program manager, Polaris Government and Defense. “Providing the Army with the option for high speed operations or missions with a soldier driving behind a traditional steering wheel is an important part of our offering.”

As military forces worldwide look to lighten the warfighter’s load now and smartly network vehicles in the multi-domain battlefield in the coming years, the MRZR X provides an evolving, robotics capable, multi-mission platform. In addition, the MRZR X provides worldwide commonality with the MRZRs already in service in the U.S. and more than 30 allied nations.

“In addition to meeting or exceeding all of the current robotics requirements, we’ve designed a layered, modular, open architecture, integrating sensors and software that will make it easier for the Army to securely upgrade technology in the vehicles,” Matthew Fordham, group lead and associate division manager for Unmanned Systems and Security Products, Applied Research Associates Inc (ARA).

The MRZR X provides warfighters with a modular, multi-mission support platform and that has multiple modes of operation that span a broad spectrum from traditional operator driving, to multiple levels of autonomy, including the capability for remote control, teleoperation, follow-me, leader-follower and full autonomy. This allows the MRZR X to enhance and evolve mobility in varying roles including service as a robotic equipment mule, autonomous resupply vehicle, warfighter-driven squad carrier, logistics support vehicle, rescue mission enabler and high-speed casualty evacuation capability. In the future, the connectivity of the MRZR X will provide the ability to act as a networked node in the multi-domain battlespace.

ARA has been producing Modular Robotic Applique Kits (M-RAKs) for more than 20 years, with a specialty in off-road robotics, further enhanced by the acquisition of Neya Systems. The advanced MRZR X fully integrates the autonomy systems and optimally places the sensors to safeguard the technology while keeping the physical and software architecture open so it can spiral in future technology. The vehicle drivetrain is powerful and reliable, allowing for longer missions, high speeds and silent drive when needed – all on the very familiar, sustainable and intuitive MRZR platform.

Polaris Industries Inc., Applied Research Associates Inc. (ARA) and Neya Systems LLC formally teamed in 2017. The Team Polaris MRZR® X evolves squad mobility with advanced unmanned systems technology from ARA and the pioneering and unsurpassed autonomous systems behavior of Neya Systems. Team Polaris has many pursuits – together and individually – with U.S. services, allied militaries and commercial programs.

Team Polaris  |  Evolving Squad Mobility  |  Polaris.com/MRZRX

US Army Raises Ceiling on Colt M4 Contract for Foreign Military Sales

Monday, May 14th, 2018

Last week, Army Contracting Command Warren (ACC-WRN) issued a notice they were planning to modify a contract with Colt’s Manufacturing Company, LLC per FAR 6.302-1 that will result in an increase in the maximum contract quantity under the Firm Fixed Price, Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract W56HZV-15-D-0038 for the following items in support of Foreign Military Sales:

NSN: 1005-01-231-0973
Noun: M4 Carbine 5.56mm
PN: 9390000

NSN: 1005-01-382-0953
Noun: M4A1 Carbine 5.56mm
PN: 12972700

Specifically, the action will increase from the current number by 10,000 from 55,500 each to 65,500 each, of any combination of M4 and M4A1 Carbine Rifles.

Updated – US Army Selects SIG Optic For Squad Designated Marksman Rifle

Thursday, May 10th, 2018

Earlier this year, the Army conducted a Limited User Evaluation of the Squad Designated Marksman Rifle. Based on the M110A1 Compact Semi Automatic Sniper System program, SDMR consists of a 7.62 NATO G28 rifle built by Heckler & Koch, equipped with an OSS Suppressor and Harris Bipod. The missing piece was the optic.

The Army’s Program Manager for Soldier Weapons invited industry, through the Tailored Logistics Support program, to submit 1-6x variable optics for the evaluation. They selected the SIG Optics TANGO6 1-6x Optic. It is a front focal optic and may recall that we previously covered this scope during Enforce Tac. Please note that this is not the mount which will be used on SDMR.

This optic was chosen specifically for the SDMR and as of now, the Directed Requirement is 6,069 systems. Funding is set for FY19.

The commercial TANGO6 optic was used by the Army Marksmanship Unit’s Daniel Horner during his win at this year’s USPSA Tactical Division. This marks his 10th win.

Update: We received this information from SIG SAUER.

“It’s truly an honor to be selected as the official optic for the Squad Designated Marksman Rifle, and it is very humbling to once again earn the trust of the US Army through this selection,” said Ron Cohen, President and CEO, SIG SAUER, Inc. “SIG SAUER is committed to providing the highest quality equipment for the military that surpasses expectations in durability, accuracy, and performance, so they have tools they can rely on for every mission requirement in the defense of freedom.”

The ruggedized SDMR TANGO6 1-6×24 riflescope features a Flat Dark Earth (FDE) anodized aircraft grade aluminum maintube, 762 Extended Range Bullet Drop Compensation (BDC) illuminated front focal plane reticle, an ultra-bright red horseshoe dot for fast daylight target acquisition, locking illumination dial, Power Selector Ring (PSR) Throw Lever, and a laser-marked scope level indicator for mount installation. The TANGO6 1-6X24 SDMR optic is a variant of SIG SAUER Electro-Optics commercially available TANGO6.

“SIG SAUER Electro-Optics fuses superior optical designs, advanced electronic technologies, and ruggedized mechanical systems tested to MIL-STD-810G at our R&D and assembly facility in Oregon, USA,” added Andy York, President SIG SAUER Electro-Optics. “We are firmly committed to supporting the US ARMY with this mission-specific riflescope that bridges the gap between close-quarters battle and mid-range tactical engagements.”

USMC Evaluating Mid and High Cut Helmets

Wednesday, May 9th, 2018

Marine Corps Systems Command (MARCORSYSCOM) issued an intent to award a sole source contract to Gentex Corporation for 97 Mid-Cut and 109 High-Cut Enhanced Combat Helmets (ECHs).  This comes after Marines with Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division evaluated Ops-Core helmets in March, during Urban Advanced Naval Technology Exercise 2018 (Urban ANTX-18) at Camp Pendleton, California.  Obviously, there aren’t enough helmets in the order to conduct any sort of fielding.  Rather, the intent is to evaluate ECH protection-level in different cuts to explore wide spread fielding.

US Army Seeks Sub Compact Weapons

Wednesday, May 9th, 2018

Project Manager Soldier Weapons (PM SW), has issued an Request for Information (RFI) to obtain information and feedback from industry regarding Sub Compact Weapons (SCW), which they describe as full/semi-automatic selectable in 9×19 mm and with a MIL-STD 1913 rail (Picatinny Rail).


They are not only interested in a weapon, but also accessories including: magazines, cleaning kits, suppressors, specialized tool kit (if required), spare parts, slings, carrying cases, manuals.

PM SW wants industry’s feedback on:

1. Given the conditions above, how many proposals (SCW systems) would you consider submitting?

2. Given the possible submissions that the vendor may decide to submit please provide technical information for each sub compact weapon.

a) Will your sub compact weapon be ambidextrous?

b) What safety testing has been conducted on your sub compact weapon system?

c) What is the price of your sub compact weapon and do you provide economy of scale?

3. Where are your production facility location(s)?

4. Please elaborate on each of these areas:

a) Past repair/refurbishment experiences with other state or federal Government agencies

b) Technical manual development experience

5. What is your warranty coverage?

This RFI will help inform the formal requirement for SCW. Responses are due 18 May 2018. See www.fbo.gov for full details.

Crane Issues Intent To Extend Sole Source 5 Year Contract For Combat Assault Rifle

Tuesday, May 8th, 2018

Late last month, Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division, issued an intent to extend a sole source contract to FN Herstal, to procure the Combat Assault Rifle (CAR), engineering services and PIO Spares and data in accordance with the Performance Specification and the Statement of Work. Once known as the SOF Combat Assault Rifle, this Modular weapon system lost the SOF designator (at least funding-wise) a few years back. The program goes back 15 years, it known in Acquisition circles as CAR and is comprised of the Mk 16, Mk 17 and Mk 20 Sniper Support Rifle.

The contract currently in place runs out this month. An extension will keep the guns running which are already in service and offer the ability to buy more if the need arises. But most interestingly, this contract can be used to modify the Mk 20 SSRs used by Naval Special Warfare from 7.62 NATO to the newly adopted 6.5 Creedmoor round.

USSOCOM plans to convert their fleet of Sniper Support Rifles to 6.5 CM. For NSW, that means the Mk 20. With this contract, the process is pretty straight forward. They are weapons acquired under Major Force Program 11, USSOCOM’s procurement budget. The move to 6.5 CM is also a SOF requirement. However, Army SOF uses the M110, the US Army’s version of the Knights Armament Corp’s SR25 which also currently fires the 7.62 NATO cartridge. As the USASOC M110s are provided by the Army, but the move to 6.5 CM is a SOF unique requirement, there is question as to who will pay for the 6.5 CM conversion and what role the US Army might play in the conversion. It’s an Army rifle, but the caliber is a SOF requirement. A similar situation may face Marine Special Operations Command for their M110s which SOCOM recently modified to the K-1 configuration. Having said that, Knight’s, Geissele Automatics and CGS have all demonstrated complete 6.5 CM upper receiver groups compatible with the M110.

In other 6.5 CM news, word is that we should expect the Advanced Sniper Rifle to undergo an Engineering Change Proposal once a weapon is selected. Current requirements include 7.62 NATO along with 300 Norma Magnum and 338 NM. The 7.62 NATO requirement facilitates shorter training ranges and ensures the weapon is compatible with the Sniper Support Rifle. But with the SSRs converting to 6.5 CM, it doesn’t make any sense to have a 7.62 capability with ASR. Luckily, the conversion to 6.5 CM is simple.

Finally, an as-yet-unnamed federal agency has also committed to 6.5 CM for its rifles. We expect more to follow suit.

USSOCOM Releases Advanced Sniper Rifle Solicitation

Monday, May 7th, 2018

Late last week, USSOCOM issued a solicitation to industry for an Advanced Sniper Rifle.  According to the Indistry Day announcement issued on 21 November, 2017, ASR is a modular, multi-caliber bolt action sniper rifle capable of engagements to beyond 1,500 m. The rifle will be chambered in 7.62×51 mm NATO, .300 Norma Magnum, and .338 Norma Magnum with caliber conversions occurring at the user level. The program is also a total small business set aside.  

Product Samples (PS) are due by 2:00 PM EST 09 July 2018, while proposals are due by 2:00 PM EST 27 August 2018.  We understand that the government is requesting three samples from each vendor.  

Details of the requirement sensitive, with access is limited to those actually bidding on the solicitation.  Get full details here.

Friday Focus – FirstSpear Wins ABAV Contract

Friday, May 4th, 2018

Fenton, MO – FirstSpear, industry leading innovator and manufacturer of military and law enforcement load bearing equipment, armor platform technology, and performance technical apparel has been awarded the SOCOM Aviation Body Armor Contract, ABAV.

The FirstSpear ABAV system endured a rigorous selection process that pushed the limits of performance and durability of the modular platforms required by todays best aviators. Evolving the transition from Air, Land, and Maritime Operations the FirstSpear system incorporated all of the features required by the end user in a streamlined package constructed from an all new FirstSpear Fire Retardant laser cut 6/12™ material.

Fully integrated emergency flotation is built right into the cummerbund allowing maximum freedom of movement for the operator while providing up to 73lbs of lift at surface in sea water during an emergency. The FirstSpear instant adjust back panel allows the end user to easily adjust cummerbund size between standard dress and flight suits to CBRNE or Cold weather gear. This functionality also allows the option to switch between land and maritime adaptive cummerbunds in just a few seconds thanks to FirstSpear Tubes™.

The ABAV was designed to enhance the survivability and lethality of the aviator within a single system that can be configured in just moments notice for the full spectrum of operational environments. FirstSpear is proud to support the men and women of our armed forces and will remain dedicated to providing the best possible equipment to those who need it most.

FirstSpear was founded in 2010 by a team of industry professionals and former U.S. servicemen with a mandate to shift industry paradigms and upend the status quo of load bearing technology and personal protective equipment. FirstSpear dedicates their efforts to support those willing to not just sacrifice and preserve our heritage but also secure our future.