23 Feb 2018

Operations in a Contested Environment – Network Cross Functional Team Technical Exchange Forum – Amendment 0002

Type of document: Contract Notice
Country: United States

Operations in a Contested Environment – Network Cross Functional Team Technical Exchange Forum

Department of the Army

Official Address:
10205 Burbeck Road
Building 362
Fort Belvoir VA 22060-5863

Zip Code:

Shahaadah C. Nalls, Phone 7037040833, Email shahaadah.c.nalls.civ@mail.mil


Date Posted:


Contract Description:

*** Amendment 0002 is issued post-event to request whitepapers. Full topic areas, submission instructions, and details are provided as Attachment 0003 to this notice.

Request for Whitepapers: Network Cross Functional Team Technical Exchange Forum #1 “Operations in a Contested Environment” Whitepaper Topic Areas

Program Executive Office Command, Control, Communications-Tactical (PEO C3T) and the Army Network CFT are seeking whitepapers, no more than 5 pages in length, on Commercial Off-the-Shelf (COTS) and Non-Developmental Item (NDI) solutions to the topic areas listed in aAtachment 0003. If you have a solution that satisfies multiple topic areas please indicate so in your executive summary. The Army is interested in solutions that are available for demonstration and experimentation. The Army partners is also interested in a broad variety of solutions at any maturity level.

The intent of this Request for Information (RFI) is to obtain a breadth and depth of information on current and emerging market capabilities to inform future Army Investment recommendations, Army requirements documentation, and other acquisition documentation. Several Army organizations will be involved in the assessment of the whitepapers across different areas in the acquisition cycles. It is highly recommended that respondents clearly identify and support claimed maturity levels so that the information is provided to the appropriate organization relative to the solutions’ maturity.

Interested parties should provide their electronic response NLT Friday 23 March @ 1300 EST in accordance with the instructions in Attachment 0003-Request for Whitepapers.***

**Amendment 0001 is issued post-event to add slides available for public release. **

Solicitation Number: W909MY-18-R-TIF1
Network Cross Functional Team Technical Exchange Forum #1
Topic: “Operations in a Contested Environment”

Notice Type:
Special Notice

The U.S. Army will hold a tactical network related Technical Industry Forum on February 6-7, 2018 at Aberdeen Proving Ground (APG), Maryland. The goal of the event is to assist industry partners in identifying and aligning their efforts with Army tactical network modernization priorities specific to enabling Army units to operate resilient network assets in contested and congested environments. This event is meant for a technical audience to include systems engineers, architecture experts and integrators. The first day will be spent outlining, in detail, the current network architecture and technical challenge areas. The second day will highlight Cross Functional Team focus areas relevant to tactical network challenge areas. Specific focus will include: 1. Air-Ground Integration; 2. Automated Primary, Alternate, Contingency, and Emergency (PACE) communications plan and 3. Tactical Radio Electromagnetic Signature. Representatives from Army program offices, Cross Functional Teams, Research & Development centers and capabilities management/requirements offices will be part of the technical exchange forum. Forum registration will close on 29 JAN 2018.


0800-0845EST – Sign in (map will be emailed upon receipt/confirmation of RSVP form)
0845-0855EST – Opening remarks
0855-0930EST – Network CFT introduction
0930-1015EST – Network operational environment (CONOPS)
1015-1700EST – Current tactical network overview and technical challenge updates (three sessions)

1015-1200EST- Session 1:
Tactical Network (upper TI)
Focus areas: Current Tactical Network architecture – WIN-T Increment 1, Increment 2, Transportable Tactical Command Communications (T2C2) and transmissions extensions; node types – command post (CP) scale, size, weight and power; common architecture implementations/services – routing, voice, wide area network optimization; common core transmissions – Network Centric Waveform (NCW), Highband Network Radio (HNR), line of sight (LOS), frequency division multiple access (FDMA), time division multiple access (TDMA); and network operations (NetOps) to include roles, cyber security, rapid provisioning.

1200-1315EST- Independent Lunch Hour

1315-1500EST- Session 2:
Lower tactical Network (radios/waveform)
Focus areas: Emerging and future tactical wireless telecommunications technologies – needs and solutions. Selected topics including hardware/software convergence (HSC), cyber electromagnetic activities/electronic warfare (CEMA/EW) hardening, future narrowband satellite communications (SATCOM), waveforms including Soldier Radio Waveform (SRW) and Wideband Networking Waveform (WNW) lessons learned and SRW Narrowband, vehicular networking for Mounted Computing Environment (MCE), emerging secure but unclassified (SBU) architecture, DevOps/Unit Task Reorganization (UTR).

1500-1515EST- Break

1515-1645-Session 3:
Mission Command
Focus areas: Current state of mission command applications and infrastructure for CPs and Mounted Platforms to include ongoing Software Baseline Reduction efforts; current plans for Common Operating Environment (COE) software and PEO C3T Computing Environments (CEs) including Command Post Computing Environment (CPCE) and Mounted Computing Environment (MCE); coalition interoperability and the Mission Partner Environment (MPE); common data model vs. data mediation discussions; alternative commercial-of-the-shelf (COTS) solution capabilities; simplified data products; UTR and Software deployment/patching solutions.

1645-1700EST- Recap Day 1 (closing comments)

7 FEB 2017: CFT TOPICAL SUBJECT AREAS (see below for technical specifics of each session)
0800-0830EST – Registration
0830-0840EST – Opening Remarks
0840-1020EST – Topic 1: Air/Ground Integration
1020-1035EST – Break
1035-1205EST – Topic 2: Automated PACE plan
1205-1315EST – Independent Lunch Hour
1315-1445EST – Tactical Radio Electromagnetic Signature (CLASSIFIED)*

*NOTE: Session 3 (Tactical Radio Electromagnetic Signature) on Day two will be classified. Participating industry must have a valid security clearance. A registration form for Session 3, Day two is located in attachment 2. If you do not have valid security clearance, you may still attend all other sessions on days one and two-only Session 3 on day two is classified.

There is currently great interest and discussion within industry, Government, and other stakeholders, of the Army’s current tactical network architecture, modernization challenges affecting the architecture, and insight into how the Army intends to implement network modernization priorities as put forth during the recent network strategy reviews and studies efforts. The Network Cross Functional Team with Army partners will host regularly scheduled Industry Forums as a means of exploring the art of the possible to meet Army network needs. The intent of the sessions will be to enhance our Government-and-industry communication and enable industry to respond quicker to critical emerging requirements with innovative technology solutions and partnerships. This event will serve as the kick-off meeting, designed to:

-Ensure industry understands focus and role of Network Cross Functional Team
-Provide a technical detailed overview of the current Army tactical network architecture
-Assist industry in identifying and aligning efforts with Army network modernization priorities
-Address industry feedback on specific topics from recent Army and Institute for Defense Analysis network related engagements
-Seek industry input on potential upcoming development and/or procurement opportunities that exist within the tactical network portfolio tied to Army network modernization strategy priorities

Questions will be permitted during the Tactical Network Industry Forum, however, questions in regards to any portfolio system in current source selection will not be allowed. The Army will make every effort to ensure questions answered during the forum will be noted and posted to the Fedbizopps.gov (FBO) government website so all interested parties can view them after the event. Additionally, you may submit interest topical questions prior to the Forum as part of the registration RSVP form. There is an area on the form for you to submit questions regarding the topical areas outlined in this special notice.

1. Air-Ground Integration
a. Problem Statement: Churn in ground waveform solutions (Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio System (SINCGARS), SINCGARS Crypto Mod, SRW, WNW, alternate solutions) and application solutions (digital kneeboard, telemedicine) delays ability to move forward with complimentary airborne radio providing direct interoperability with ground tactical systems.
b. Discussion:
i. Provide overview of current air-ground integration solutions (i.e. SINCGARS voice, Blue Force Tracking (BFT) transceivers)
ii. Provide overview of use cases and lessons learned through Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) experimentation – Enhanced Mid-tier Air/Ground Network (EMAGINET) and Air-Ground Integrated Link Enhanced Network (AGILENET)
iii. Explain future interoperability capability needs for A/G integration.
iv. Discuss challenge of preserving Software Defined Radios (SDR) flexibility for incorporating future capability like future waveforms without driving SWaP-C beyond acceptable limits.
c. Intended Outcome: Provide sufficient operational context to receive future feedback from industry on key tradeoffs, drivers and suggestions for airborne radio solutions.

2. Automated PACE Plan
a. Problem Statement: Tactical operators need the ability to send and receive information over any available network or transport path without manual reconfiguration.
b. Discussion:
i. Discuss challenges associated with solving this problem including hysteresis to prevent route flapping
ii. Provide description of how the Army addressed similar challenges with Highband Networking Waveform(HNW)/NCW and WNW/BFT2, and lessons learned/remaining gaps
iii. Provide overview of PEO C3T policy and challenge of ensuring that most critical messages are able to continue to be sent and received over networks with diminished links
iv. Discuss challenges associated with user feedback: some users (especially in CPs) will want to have more direct control over transport path changes. All users may want a way to easily disable one or more paths if needed for emissions control (i.e. radio silent).
c. Intended Outcome: Identify commercial concepts for further prototyping and experimentation that can demonstrate the ability to automatically select among available network and transport paths and can prioritize high importance traffic.

3. Tactical Radio Electromagnetic Signature (classified)
a. Problem Statement: Tactical wireless emissions provide detectible signatures that can be identified and geo-located or jammed by advanced adversaries. The problem is exacerbated by the proliferation of wireless devices into the field.
b. Discussion:
i. Network Vulnerability Assessment summary for context
ii. Explain Army desire to provide “low probability of intercept/low probability of detection” (LDI/LPD) solutions to the field
1. Discuss practical challenges of achieving LPI/LPD in terms of data throughput and threat advancement over time
2. Discuss relative merits/downsides of different approaches to counter geo-location at both vehicle and dismount communications levels.
iii. Discuss government work to date in evaluating techniques to achieve anti-jam performance.
c. Intended Outcome: Refinement of best technical concepts to further prototype/develop to provide most effective counter to enemy geo-location or communications denial

A confirmation email with a complete final agenda for the Forum, location and parking instructions will be provided after the registration process is completed, no later than Tuesday 30 January 2018. In order to obtain maximum participation from industry, vendors are limited to 7 personnel per company or major subsidiary. It is not required to have participated in a previous Industry Day/Forum or be a current PEO C3T or Army vendor in order to register for this Forum. If you plan to attend the Day Two classified session “Tactical Radio Electromagnetic Signature” you must possess a current SECRET security clearance. Registration form for this panel, including JPAS information is included in Attachment 1. Registration for the Forum and the classified session must be submitted by 1700EST on 29 January 2018 via email to Ms. Bridget Lynch at bridget.a.lynch3.ctr@mail.mil. Instructions are contained in Attachment 0001.

Offeror’s are welcome to submit whitepapers up to 5 pages in length following the industry day addressing potential industry solutions to gaps discussed in the forum up to six weeks after the event. Instructions for submission of the white papers will be provided during the Industry Forum and posted to this website. These whitepapers are intended for informational purposes only and this notice shall not be considered as an Invitation for Bid, Request for Quotation, Request for Proposal or as an obligation on the part of the Government to acquire any products or services. The response to the Technical Interchange Forum will be treated as information only. Responses may be used to develop Government documentation. No entitlement to payment of direct or indirect costs or charges by the Government will arise as a result of industry submission of responses to this announcement or the Government use of such information.

The US Army will make every effort to hold the TACTICAL NETWORK INDUSTRY FORUM at the times, dates and locations specified. The US Army holds the right to cancel and/or change session event times, dates and locations under certain conditions. These conditions usually include, but are not limited to: inclement weather, event venue cancellation or rescheduling, speaker cancellation or rescheduling, and insufficient number of participants for the event. The US Army holds the right to cancel the event for any reason up to and including the day of the event. In the event that the US Army must cancel the event, the US Army will not be responsible for costs incurred in preparation for either the Industry Forum or the Vendor Feedback Sessions. In the event of predicted inclement weather, a decision will be made by 5pm on the prior day. If the event is cancelled, the notice will be posted on this website and an email will be sent to all registered participants.

[one attachment included-2 pages]
[end of special notice]

Response Date:

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