News: US Army issues draft Sources Sought notice to support Network Integration Evaluation
Story by Katie Cain
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. – The U.S. Army, through the System of Systems Integration Directorate, announced that it is seeking interested industry and government sources with mature solutions to support the next network Capability Set and to participate in the Network Integration Evaluation 13.2 event, scheduled to take place in May 2013 at Fort Bliss, Texas and White Sands Missile Range, N.M.
The NIE is a series of semi-annual evaluations designed to further integrate/mature the Army’s tactical network, and accelerate and improve the way network technologies are delivered to soldiers.
NIE 13.2 will focus on solidifying the network baseline that will make up the foundation of Capability Set 14, the Army’s second integrated set of network capability, which will be fielded starting in 2014.
The purpose of this draft Sources Sought notice is to identify emerging capabilities to be evaluated against a set of entrance criteria for an opportunity to participate in NIE 13.2. This Sources Sought seeks mature solutions with a narrow focus on specific identified gaps in the current and evolving networked equipment solution set.
The identified gaps are: commander’s applications for mobile and handheld platform, enhanced Command Post collaboration and visualization, company information architecture, network operations visualized in the Command Post, aerial layer network – Air Ground Integration, integrated employment of LandWarNet installation & training resources and WIN-T interoperable SATCOM and ground to ground capability on Heavy Brigade Combat Team maneuver platforms.
Functional requirements for these gaps are listed in the draft Sources Sought on the Federal Business Opportunities website. An updated Sources Sought will be issued in early August. Industry can use this draft Sources Sought to begin working candidate submissions to support NIE 13.2.
“The draft sources sought will give industry an early view of broad based capability gaps as the Army looks to solidify Capability Set 14. The Army intends to seek industry feedback as we work to finalize capability gap specifics. This collaboration can result in better defined and supportable capability gaps,” said Kelly Alexander, Project Director Futures System of Systems Integration.
The Army is seeking only those solutions that address the specific identified gaps, that are at the representative model or prototype system stage and that have been tested in a relevant environment.
"Previous Network Integration Evaluations allowed the Army to solidify the network baseline, we are now providing that baseline and the common operating environment to industry to allow them to build their systems and capabilities into the architecture. To support Capability Set 14, through the NIE process, we are reaching out to both large and small industry partners to fill hardware and software needs to support the network baseline,” said Brig Gen. Dan Hughes, director, System of Systems Integration Directorate.
The Sources Sought notification was announced one day prior to the Army hosting an NIE / Agile Process Industry Day at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. The more than 225 industry representatives attending will have the opportunity to learn more about the Agile Process criteria and the integration and testing process that supports the NIE, review the capability gaps that exist, and outline future NIE participation opportunities. Interested industry partners can view detailed Sources Sought information by accessing the Federal business opportunities website at https://www.fbo.gov/index?s=opportunity&mode=form&