SOF Week

Archive for the ‘ISR’ Category

US Army Completes Fielding of Short Range Reconnaissance System

Friday, December 2nd, 2022

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. — The Soldier Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Product Office successfully completed fielding of the RQ-28A, Short Range Reconnaissance (SRR) system to the 3rd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment at Fort Benning, GA, in early November.

The Skydio RQ-28A is the Army’s first program of record quadcopter. It is a new and disruptive organic capability that is fielded to the platoon echelon in the form of a portable rucksack Vertical Take Off and Lift, small, unmanned aircraft. It provides Warfighters with enhanced situational awareness and a standoff capability in urban and complex terrain, enabling accurate reconnaissance and surveillance of targets of interest. It can be used to conduct surveillance during routine combat operations.

During the new equipment fielding and new equipment training, UAS project office leaders, along with crucial personnel from the SUAS offices, traveled to Fort Benning to participate in the final day of training with the Soldiers and engage critical stakeholders.

“It’s very intuitive with great obstacle avoidance, additionally the thermal is better than expected.” Said Staff Sgt. Adam McDevitt the UAS section platoon sergeant. “I can’t wait to use this on full mission profiles to see what it can really do.”

“The SRR RQ-28A capability will provide game-changing technology to Army platoons, enhancing both Soldier lethality and survivability” said Carson L. Wakefield, product lead for Soldier Unmanned Aircraft Systems. “It is a new capability for the Army, and I am so proud of my team for delivering an innovative solution in just under three years from prototype to delivery.”

The quadcopter system weighs less than five pounds, can be carried and stowed in a transport case and is rucksack portable. It has vertical take-off and landing, hover, perch and stare capabilities. The system is hand launched and capable of being recovered within confined areas.

The Soldier UAS Product Office is scheduled to field 480 systems across the Army in 2023 with a total of 1,083 delivered during low-rate initial production systems through the second quarter of F25.

The RQ-28A is the first tranche of the SRR program and delivers a much-needed capability to Soldiers. Tranche 2 will include a prototyping effort and will include threshold requirements and multiple performance objectives.

By David Hylton

525th E-MIB Military Intelligence History Minute

Monday, November 28th, 2022

Each week the 525th Expeditionary Military Intelligence Brigade presents a video showcasing moments in intelligent history. Here is the latest:

SOFWERX x Joint Special Operations University Geopolitical Mapping & Social Network Analytics Collaboration Event

Monday, October 31st, 2022

Do you have expertise in geopolitical mapping and social network analysis?

SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM and the Joint Special Operations University (JSOU), will host a series of events in November to find solutions for a Geographic Information System (GIS) generated Geopolitical Toolkit and associated Social Network Analysis to help SOF professionals assess and visualize where geopolitical flashpoints might emerge. 

Warfighters will interact with potential solution offerors and further communicate operational needs and desirements. The goal is develop GIS-generated Geopolitical Toolkit (or atlas) and social network analysis to help SOF professionals assess and visualize where geopolitical flashpoints might emerge. The prototype must be baselined on the Campaign Plan for Global SOF Operations (CP-GSO). The aim is a single operating picture that combines the GIS-generated Geopolitical Toolkit, leveraging data analytics to construct network models that inform SOF interventions.

Request to Attend NLT 16 November 2022 11:59 PM ET

More information at events.sofwerx.org/map.

Moog Inc to Support L3Harris and Air Tractor Sky Warden Team on USSOCOM Armed Overwatch Program

Tuesday, October 18th, 2022

EAST AURORA, N.Y. – Oct 18, 2022 – Moog Inc. (NYSE: MOG.A and MOG.B) announced today that L3Harris Technologies has selected Moog’s Space and Defense segment to provide its weapon Stores Management System (SMS) in support of the U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) Armed Overwatch Program.

L3Harris’ USSOCOM award includes an indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract with a cost ceiling of $3 billion. The program calls for delivery of up to 75 manned, fixed-wing aircraft. Moog’s combat proven, modular, lightweight, and affordable SMS solution will be integrated on each aircraft to provide superior fire-control and mission set capabilities.

“We are honored to have been part of the L3Harris team’s pursuit, resulting in this award after many months of intense competition,” said Jim Riedel, Group Vice President, Moog Inc. “This is a testament to the Sky WardenTM teams’ commitment to the warfighter and the demonstrated ability to deliver a quality, well-engineered, integrated multi-mission platform. Agility, innovation, and collaboration with teammates have been key to providing this robust solution. Moog is committed to reliably delivering our SMS products in support of our U.S. Special Operations Forces.”

The flexible design of the SMS enables rapid integration and future upgrades to the sensors, avionics, and weapons ensuring value for future mission requirements in response to rapidly evolving threats. The Moog weapon SMS Armed Overwatch solution set entails the following:

– Enhanced Stores Management Computer (E-SMC) – Stores Interface Unit (SIU)

– Remote Power Unit (RPU-6)

– Dual Rail Launcher (DRL) for HELLFIRE® Missile

The SMS equipment will be manufactured by Moog’s Integrated Defense Systems business in Orlando, Florida. Production of new, fully modified Armed Overwatch mission-configured aircraft will begin in 2023 at L3Harris’ Tulsa, Oklahoma modification center.

“Moog’s modern and flexible stores management system seamlessly integrates with our mission management system for mission agility and flexibility,” said Luke Savoie, President, ISR, L3Harris. “Our teams are prepared to deliver enhanced overwatch capabilities through mutual collaboration and rapid integration of new weapons systems.”

SMX Awarded Competitive $2.3B U.S. Africa Command ARIES Task Order

Thursday, October 6th, 2022

HERNDON, Va., Oct. 03, 2022 — SMX, a leader in Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C5ISR), next-generation cloud, and advanced engineering and information technology (IT) solutions, announced today that it has been awarded a prime contract to continue its support of U.S. Africa Command (USAFRICOM) ISR mission operations and intelligence analysis. With an estimated value of $2.3 Billion (inclusive of option periods), the task order, titled “AFRICOM Reconnaissance Intelligence Exploitation Services (ARIES),” was competed and awarded on GSA’s ASTRO Data Operations Pool contract (see https://aas.gsa.gov/astro/).

Over 30 companies were eligible to bid on the ARIES task order. Dedicated to equipping decision makers with accurate, relevant and timely intelligence information to achieve continued decision superiority across the vast and complex AFRICOM area of responsibility, this new award has a seven-year period of performance and will allow SMX and its teaming partners to extend their support through 2029 if all option periods are exercised.

ARIES, like its predecessor task order, is a complex, multi-tenant task order providing cutting-edge full lifecycle intelligence solutions through cloud-enabled data insights and decision analytics. ARIES’ objective is to improve the United States’ ability to observe, orient, decide and act faster and more effectively on the information provided through an innovative system of systems intelligence collection and dissemination eco-system.

“We are honored and excited to have been selected to continue our support of and partnership with USAFRICOM and GSA FEDSIM. We look forward to building upon our world-class C5ISR solutions in support of the critical missions USAFRICOM executes. We are grateful to our employees and teaming partner subcontractors who work alongside our clients wherever and whenever the mission demands,” said Peter LaMontagne, Chief Executive Officer.

Dana Dewey, President of the C5ISR business unit, commented, “SMX and our industry partners will continue to work seamlessly to identify and deliver emerging technologies and innovative approaches that will accelerate mission execution on this critical National Security requirement. We are thrilled to deliver collection modernization and non-traditional ISR solutions that will leverage multi-modal all source data insights, curated to mission need, both remotely and with edge compute technologies.”

Persistent Systems to Unveil Next-Generation ISR at AUSA

Wednesday, October 5th, 2022

Solution offers seamless, bidirectional, air-ground video connection without cumbersome receivers

Persistent Systems, LLC (“Persistent”), a leader in mobile ad hoc networking (MANET) technology, will demonstrate for the first time its Cloud Relay™-powered Next-Generation ISR concept at the Association of the United States Army’s (AUSA) 2022 Annual Meeting and Exposition, held October 10-12, in Washington, D.C.

Leveraging Persistent’s Cloud Relay™ solution, which extends the company’s powerful Wave Relay® mobile ad hoc network to beyond line of sight (4G/LTE, SATCOM, or standard Internet), Next-Generation ISR offers warfighters a seamless, persistent, bidirectional air-ground video connectivity that greatly speeds up the tempo of operations.

“Currently, troops on the ground are passive recipients of airborne video,” says Christopher Knapp, Director of Business Development at Persistent Systems. “They rely on cumbersome receiver hardware to get video, and even then, the operator with the gear has to be out in the open to watch the feed. All this slows downs operations.”

But with Next-Generation ISR, Persistent has reimagined air-ground video transmission for the networked battlefield.

Now video can be instantly accessible to warfighters, whether they are operating near an aircraft—or at an operations center half-way around the world. Next-Generation ISR also reduces the cognitive load on the soldier and makes mission-critical information available to the entire team.

“When we click on a video on our smartphones, it immediately starts playing. We don’t think about whether we are on Wi-Fi or 5G. With Next-Generation ISR, soldiers can now realize this same convenience on the battlefield,” said Knapp.

By utilizing the Wave Relay® and Cloud Relay™ networks for video transmission, Next-Generation ISR eliminates the need for special receiver equipment. Now a soldier’s MPU5 networking radio is enough. This change both reduces weight and increases capability. Indeed, dismounted users can also talk directly with the sensor operator and control the camera on the aircraft.

“In building this capability, we’ve collaborated with aircraft camera manufacturers to ensure that the dismounted warfighter can control their cameras,” Knapp said. “We’ve also collaborated with the TAK Product Center to ensure that the feeds and camera control information is auto-discovered in TAK. This is really an industry-wide initiative.”

Persistent Systems will be demonstrating its Next-Generation ISR capability during the upcoming AUSA Annual Meeting and Exposition, at the company’s exhibitor booth (#4552), at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, in Washington, D.C. Visitors will get to see how a user of Persistent’s Wave Relay®-powered MANET with Cloud Relay™ can receive video and control cameras from anywhere in the world.

For more information about Persistent’s solutions, visit our website: www.persistentsystems.com.

AeroVironment’s New Mantis i23 D Multi-Sensor Imaging Payload Delivers Superior Daytime Surveillance Performance

Thursday, September 1st, 2022

• Mantis i23 D is a compact, high-performance daytime imaging payload system for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) operations at an extended range

• Features 24X digital zoom video for extended ISR without compromising image quality

• Payload provides 50 percent wider HFOV and more than four times the target detection capability over the current Mantis i23 for improved situational awareness


The Mantis i23 D daytime imaging payload system allows operators to capture ISR at a greater aircraft standoff distance without compromising image quality. (Photo: AeroVironment, Inc.)

ARLINGTON, Va., Aug. 30, 2022 –AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV), a global leader in intelligent, multi-domain robotic systems, today introduced Mantis™ i23 D, a multi-sensor daytime imaging payload compatible with the Raven® B small unmanned aircraft systems (SUAS). An enhanced daylight variant of its predecessor, the Mantis i23, Mantis i23 D maintains its ruggedized design and utilizes the same modular interface to allow for quick and simple swapping between payloads with no software updates required to the avionics or ground control systems.

At 13.4 ounces (380 grams), the ultralight imaging system features dual 18 MP electro-optical sensors and class-leading 24X digital zoom, providing four times improved target detection over the current Mantis i23 payload during daytime missions. Through its advanced suite of sensors, extended zoom capability, onboard processing and digital imaging stabilization, the Mantis i23 D payload allows operators to increase aircraft standoff distance without compromising image quality.

“With the introduction of the next-generation Mantis payload, we have expanded the capabilities and adoption of the combat-proven Raven SUAS,” said Charles Dean, AeroVironment vice president of global business development, sales and marketing. “Customers can now operate their Raven systems at a greater standoff distance than before, enabling eyes-on-target from several kilometers away and reducing the risk of the target detecting or hearing the SUAS overhead.”

To learn more about Mantis i23 D and AeroVironment’s expansive Mantis product line of micro-gimbals, visit: www.avinc.com/uas/payloads.

USSOCOM Science and Technology Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) 22.4 Round 2 & 3 Pre-Release

Saturday, August 13th, 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

(Round 2) PHASE I:
SOCOM224-007 Topological Anomaly Detection

(Round 3) DIRECT TO PHASE II:
SOCOM224-D005: Artificial Intelligence-Driven Voice Control at the Edge
SOCOM224-D006: Canine In-Ear Hearing Protection

On 23 August, SOFWERX will host virtual Q&A sessions for each of the areas of interest. RSVP to the Q&A session(s) that interest you here.