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USSOCOM Science and Technology Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) 22.4

Monday, August 1st, 2022

The USSOCOM Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and the Small
Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs will soon be accepting submissions for the technology areas of interest below.

Special Areas of Interest


SOCOM224-D001: Track Correlation/Data Deduplication for SOF Mission Command
SOCOM224-D002: Natural Language Processing for Special Operations Forces
SOCOM224-D003: Low/No Code Data Manipulation and Discovery for Special Operations Forces
SOCOM224-D004: Human Machine Teaming for Reduction of Operator Cognitive Load

Questions? Visit SOFWERX.

Submit by 23 August 2022.

GM Defense to Provide Battery Electric Vehicle to U.S. Army for Analysis and Demonstration

Wednesday, July 20th, 2022

WASHINGTON, D.C. — GM Defense, a subsidiary of General Motors, was selected by the U.S. Army to provide a battery electric vehicle for analysis and demonstration. GM Defense will leverage the GMC HUMMER EV, featuring GM’s Ultium Platform, to meet the U.S. Army’s requirement for a light to heavy duty battery electric vehicle to support reduced reliance on fossil fuels both in the operational and garrison environments.

“This award showcases GM Defense’s ability to leverage the best battery electric technology in the commercial marketplace,” said Steve duMont, president of GM Defense. “With access to GM’s advanced technologies, GM Defense is able to provide proven commercial technologies adapted to meet specific defense requirements and the needs of our customers.”

The GMC HUMMER EV Pickup is the world’s first and only all-electric supertruck that features a 24-module, double-stacked Ultium battery pack and zero-tailpipe emissions. The vehicle features 1,000 horsepower, 11,500 lb-ft of wheel torque and is capable of full 350 kilowatt/800-volt DC fast charging, enabling up to nearly 100 miles in 12 minutes. The GMC HUMMER EV Pickup offers 329 miles of combined driving range for Edition 1, with 0-60 mph acceleration times as quick as 3 seconds.

“Leveraging GM’s advanced technology, this demonstration will prove to our U.S. Army customer what an all-electric supertruck can do and how the underlying technology can be leveraged for future defense needs, whether on an installation or in a tactical environment,” continued duMont.

GM Defense is leveraging GM’s $35 billion investment in electric vehicle and autonomous vehicle technology to help lead global defense and government customers’ transition to a more electric, connected and autonomous future.

Further Successes for 40mm Ammunition from Rheinmetall: Supply orders from Asia for Rheinmetall Denel Munition – Expansion of the Customer Base

Tuesday, July 12th, 2022

Rheinmetall has scored further contract successes in the field of 40mm ammunition. The South African subsidiary Rheinmetall Denel Munition has been awarded contracts for the supply of 40mm ammunition by two customers in Asia. In one case, this is a new customer who has ordered 400,000 40mm low-velocity grenades. These are to be delivered by December 2022. In the other case, an existing customer ordered 100,000 rounds of medium velocity grenades. These are to be delivered between December 2022 and February 2023. In total, the order is worth about 25 million euros.
“With these two contracts, we are expanding our customer base in Asia,” says Jan-Patrick Helmsen, CEO Rheinmetall Denel Munition. Negotiations are already underway to increase the quantities.

Rheinmetall Denel Munition offers a comprehensive range of high-quality 40mm ammunition, including. 40x46mm Low Velocity (LV), 40x53mm High Velocity (HV) and 40x51mm Medium Velocity (MV).

The 40mm MV ammunition has a range of up to 800 metres – 200 metres more than comparable products on the market. The 40mm LV ammunition has a range of up to 400 metres. Both types of ammunition use a High Explosive Dual Purpose projectile. This combines fragmentation and shaped charge, which has a high penetrating power. It can be used against bunkers and armoured targets and can penetrate 50 mm rolled homogenous armour (RHA).

The ammunition is manufactured in accordance with international standards and is suitable for use with suitably qualified grenade launchers of the latest generation.

Schiebel Camcopter S-100 Delivers Enhanced Maritime Situational Awareness For The Icelandic Coast Guard

Friday, July 8th, 2022

Vienna, 7 July 2022 – Schiebel’s CAMCOPTER® S-100 is supporting the Icelandic Coast Guard both day and night delivering enhanced maritime situational awareness for an array of operational tasks, through a contract with the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA).

Currently deployed from the patrol vessel ICGV Thor and from ICGV Freyja, the Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) is operated by Schiebel. The CAMCOPTER® S-100 gives the Icelandic Coast Guard the possibility of gaining better coverage of its large Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). The main task is being able to identify vessels and activities of interest at a much greater range than normal, thereby substantially extending the ship’s situational awareness. The activities include fisheries inspection and control, maritime safety, ship and port security, environmental protection and response, as well as supporting Search and Rescue (SAR) when needed.

The S-100 executes these various tasks equipped with a Trakka TC-300 (and in future with an MX-10 Gen-4) Electro-Optical / Infra-Red (EO/IR) camera gimbal, an Overwatch Imaging PT-8 Oceanwatch wide area camera, a Becker Avionics BD406 Emergency Beacon Locator and an Automatic Identification System (AIS) receiver.

Hans Georg Schiebel, Chairman of the Schiebel Group, said: “This operation is delivered as part of our ongoing service contracts with EMSA. It is great to witness that ever more European maritime authorities are making use of the exceptional capabilities of the S-100. Especially in the maritime domain, the CAMCOPTER® S-100 is demonstrating its solid level of performance and experience.”

Army Publishes Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) Request for Proposal (RFP)

Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

The Army’s search for a Bradley Fighting Vehicle replacement took another step forward last week when they released a request for proposals to industry for Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) Phase 3 and 4 Detailed Design, Prototype Build and Test Effort.

The last phase saw five companies involved: American Rheinmetall Vehicles, BAE Systems Land and Armaments, General Dynamics Land Systems, Oshkosh Defense, and Point Blank Enterprises. As a full and open competition, this latest round opens the program to additional comers, including foreign companies.

American Rheinmetall Vehicles Lynx

No matter how many end up bidding, only three will be down-selected for phases three and four which will take place this fall. Those companies will build a minimum of seven prototype vehicles with up to four additional prototypes and well as two ballistic hulls, turrets, and armor coupons. A phase 3 and 4 contract is worth up to $903 Million.

Like the Bradley, OMFV must carry six dismounts, with a crew of two. Reportedly, the Army envisions six OMFVs per platoon, to carry a minimum of 30 soldiers total with room for enablers in addition to close combat forces within the Armored Brigade Combat Team.

While the system must be capable of optional manning, via remote control, the Army foresees that eventually, it will be capable of autonomous movement. There are currently plans to hand off autonomous target engagement to machines although ISR and target engagement sensors are already being used to look for situations of interest to alert the human-in-the-loop.

While Infantry and Armor NCOs may currently earn an Additional Skill Identifier for operations of ground robots, the service is considering development of a non-accessions MOS of 19R for CMF 11 and 19 NCOs in grades SGT – SFC to operate the suite of remotely operated capabilities currently under development.

US Army Approves Milestone C and Awards LRIP Contract for the Mobile Protected Firepower Program

Wednesday, July 6th, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Army announced today the award of a $1.14 billion contract to General Dynamics Land Systems, Sterling Heights, Michigan, for the production and fielding of up to 96 Mobile Protected Firepower, or MPF, vehicles. The award comes just days after the Army closed out the MPF middle-tier acquisition rapid-prototyping phase and transitioned to a major capability acquisition program with a favorable Milestone C decision — an incremental step in the Department of Defense’s acquisition process that moves into the production and deployment phase.

MPF will provide infantry brigades greater survivability, the ability to identify threat systems earlier and at greater distances, and will not restrict movement in off-road terrain. MPF will also allow Soldiers to move at a faster pace, protecting the assaulting force.

“The MPF program did exactly what the Army asked, which was to complete a competitive and accelerated rapid prototyping effort with Soldier touchpoints,” said Mr. Doug Bush, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, and the Army’s acquisition executive. “MPF is a benchmark program, as the acquisition and requirement communities worked together to complete the [middle-tier acquisition rapid-prototyping] phase and move this system into production in just under four years.”

The Milestone C decision came on schedule and was underpinned by strong support and overwhelming commitment from Army leadership.

“MPF represents a new capability for the Army, allowing our light maneuver forces to overmatch adversaries. Through multiple Soldier touchpoints, our Soldiers have operated the prototypes and provided crucial feedback to the design team, ensuring our forces will have the asset they need on the future battlefield,” said Maj. Gen. Ross Coffman, director of the Next Generation Combat Vehicles Cross Functional Team.

During the middle-tier acquisition rapid-prototyping phase, the Army successfully tested and evaluated 24 prototypes during a pandemic. Middle-tier acquisition authorities allow the Army to have the flexibility to get prototypes into Soldiers’ hands quickly to enable fidelity on known risks and develop informed plans moving forward.

“Congress has provided us with flexible [middle-tier acquisition] legislation that allows for accelerated prototype delivery and Soldier operational feedback, which expedites the fidelity on technical and programmatic risks to better inform program acquisition decisions,” Bush said.

The MPF will be the Army’s first new design vehicle fielded in over four decades, with first unit equipped planned for late fiscal year 2025.

“Today’s announcement sets in motion an important modernization effort for the Army. As a team we’ve worked diligently to make certain we’ve taken the right steps early on to accept risk where appropriate and move faster,” said Brig. Gen. Glenn Dean, ASA(ALT)’s program executive officer for ground combat systems. “The Army is committed to delivering the MPF capability to the infantry brigade on an accelerated schedule with incremental improvements over time.”

During the low-rate initial production phase the Army will take delivery of MPF vehicles and conduct production qualification testing to include lethality, mobility, survivability, full-up system live-fire, and reliability, Availability and maintainability testing. Additionally, an initial operational test and evaluation will also be conducted, all leading to the first unit equipped. The award of subsequent low-rate initial production vehicle options will be based on review of cost, schedule and performance metrics defined in the acquisition program baseline.

By U.S. Army Public Affairs

HENSOLDT and THEON Receive OCCAR Contract for 20.000 Night Vision Goggles

Tuesday, July 5th, 2022

Bonn, 5 July 2022 – The Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR) signed a contract amendment to an existing contract for binocular night vision goggles on behalf of Belgium and Germany with a Consortium consisting of HENSOLDT Optronics and THEON SENSORS. The contract amendment worth a mid-three-digit million amount activates the existing option of the supply of an additional 20.000 MIKRON Night Vision Goggles to the German Armed Forces while at the same time the delivery schedule shall be accelerated. The follow-up contract will be executed by the newly founded joint venture HENSOLDT Theon Night Vision.

The contract amendment furthermore covers various enhancements of MIKRON and changes to the system configuration as a result of the Operational Testing and Acceptance phase which was successfully passed by the end of February 2022. 

At the signing of the contract in Bonn with Andreas Hülle, Head of the Optronics & Land Solutions Division and Managing Director of HENSOLDT Optronics, and Christian Hadjiminas, CEO of THEON SENSORS, the Director of OCCAR-EA Matteo Bisceglia stated: “The additional 20.000 Night Vision Googles (NVG) supply to the German Armed Forces proves the success and perspective of OCCAR’s program through the new joint venture company HENSOLDT Theon NightVision”.

Andreas Hülle said: “HENSOLDT and THEON have already worked together successfully in the past. Here, two European companies are working together in an exemplary way to equip the Belgian and German armed forces with state-of-the-art night vision equipment. This order is directly related to our growth strategy. Russia’s war against Ukraine shows how important networked high-performance sensor technology and optical systems are for equipping our armed forces in line with the times.”

Christian Hadjiminas, CEO of THEON SENSORS, added: “This new large contract amendment is a culmination of the successful cooperation between HENSOLDT Optronics and THEON SENSORS that opens doors for synergies and co-operation in other areas within Europe. The present growth is not only beneficial for the countries and companies involved, but also is strengthening the European industrial position in the worldwide context.”

The type of night vision goggles selected is the MIKRON, a Binocular Night Vision Google (BNVG) with two 16 mm residual light amplifier tubes and integrated infrared illuminator. They can be worn by the soldier either on the helmet or by means of a headgear system. The two monoculars can be folded away separately. MIKRON is powered by a single AA battery but can also be operated with an external battery pack should a longer operating time be required.

The accelerated delivery schedule of the enhanced MIKRON shall start with first deliveries this month, while the total current contractual quantity of 29.550 NVGs is planned to be concluded in the 3rd quarter of 2024. The increase in night vision capability for both programme participating states is critical in providing advanced equipment for their dismounted, airmobile and air assault soldiers as well as drivers of military vehicles.

Lone Star Future Weapons Withdraws NGSW Bid Protests

Sunday, July 3rd, 2022

Lone Star Future Weapons had submitted two protests to the Government Accountability Office regarding the US Army’s Next Generation Squad Weapons program award contract to SIG SAUER on 19 April 2022. One was on May 18 and the other on June 10. On 1 July, Lone Star Future Weapons withdrew both. These protests had led to a stop work order on the program until at least 19 September, frustrating the government’s very aggressive schedule with months of inactivity.

We have no idea what was asserted in either protest or why they chose to withdraw, so we are unable to comment any further.