The Army Modernization Plan 2012

The Army Modernization Plan 2012

The Army’s modernization plan establishes a blueprint to develop and field a versatile and affordable mix of equipment that will allow Soldiers and units to succeed in full-spectrum operations today and to maintain their decisive advantage over any enemy. The Army has evaluated its modernization program portfolios, set priorities within them, and continually improves its acquisition program. In improving the programs and processes, the Army has four major lines of effort: Develop and acquire new capabilities to meet capability gaps through traditional and rapid acquisition processes. Sustain existing equipment to extend its useful life. Procure unique equipment for immediate capability needs. Field and distribute capabilities in accordance with Army priorities […]

PD ALTESS Achieves Multiple Honors, Sets Precedent for Acquisition IT

PD ALTESS Achieves Multiple Honors, Sets Precedent for Acquisition IT

By Scott Friend and Charles Smith Project Director Acquisition, Logistics & Technology Enterprise Systems & Services (PD ALTESS), part of Program Executive Office Enterprise Information Systems, received three national honors.  The Radford, VA-based ALTESS, a provider of information technology (IT) systems, services, and security for the Army’s acquisition domain, learned in February that it would receive a Government Information Technology Executive Council (GITEC) Project Management Award. Less than a week later, ALTESS’ Service Level Management Branch Chief, Debbie Jenkins, was selected as Pink Elephant Inc.’s Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL) Practitioner of the Year. Then, in March, ALTESS was named runner-up for Excellence.gov’s Going Green Award. ALTESS’ 2011 awards reflect […]

Tobyhanna Army Depot: Center of Radar Excellence

Tobyhanna Army Depot: Center of Radar Excellence

A large, white radome dominates the high ground at Tobyhanna Army Depot in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. It symbolizes the growing number of radars and sensors, including air defense, air traffic control, ground surveillance, airborne, shipborne, range threat systems, and critical counterfire systems, which Tobyhanna personnel maintain and support for the U.S. Army, Air Force,  Marine Corps, and Navy. “Tobyhanna has been repairing and testing radars since the 1960s,” said COL Charles Gibson, commander of Tobyhanna Army Depot, “so we have extensive capability and experience in this critical commodity.” Facilities, experience, and personnel make Tobyhanna DOD’s one-stop-shop for radar sustainment, engineering, redesign, and environmental testing. Tobyhanna has flexible and […]

Building the Army Network: ‘A Revolutionary New Approach’

Building the Army Network: ‘A Revolutionary New Approach’

By Kris Osborn The U.S. Army in July completed an exhaustive Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) at Fort Bliss, TX, and White Sands Missile Range, NM, to test programs of record and assess emerging network technologies. The NIE, which began the first week of June, is a key part of the Army’s network strategy. This and future follow-on NIEs are structured to assess the scope and readiness of emerging technologies and integrate new capability before sending it to Soldiers in combat. One of the main goals of the NIEs is to help the Army field current technology faster, ensuring that Soldiers maintain the technological edge over our adversaries. With this overarching […]

Army Building Foundational Software for Common Operating Environment

Army Building Foundational Software for Common Operating Environment

By Kris Osborn and Margaret C. Roth The U.S. Army’s System-of-Systems (SoS) Engineering effort has identified a number of computing environments through which to implement standards defined by the Army Chief Information Officer (CIO/G-6), service officials said. When adopted, these standards will define the Common Operating Environment (COE). Aimed at addressing interoperability between systems and agility in development and deployment, the COE also focuses on an open architecture to leverage industry innovation, ensure cyber-hardened foundations for security, and reduce the life-cycle cost of systems. The computing environment (CE) structure is geared toward organizing the Army environment from the sustaining base to the tactical edge. Stringent Standards Stringent technical standards will […]

Picatinny Lands Patent for Explosive Ordnance Disposal Video Game

Picatinny Lands Patent for Explosive Ordnance Disposal Video Game

A patent was recently granted for a process to safely train Soldiers in how to operate a variety of robots used in Iraq and Afghanistan to detonate improvised explosive devices (IEDs). The Robotic Vehicle Trainer is a realistic video game that simulates combat environments using the same controls as actual robots used in Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD). The design was the brainchild of Dr. Bernard Reger, Chief of the Combat Support and Munitions Systems Branch of the Armament Software Engineering Center. within the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development, and Engineering Center (ARDEC). Reger received the patent from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on Dec. 28 (No. 7,860,614). The patent […]

Army Demonstrating Wideband Waveforms

Army Demonstrating Wideband Waveforms

[author type="author"]Kris Osborn[/author] The Army is planning to demonstrate the ability of wideband waveforms such as Soldier Radio Waveform (SRW) and Wideband Networking Waveform (WNW) to move voice, video, data, and images faster, farther, and more efficiently than legacy waveforms across the battlefield through ad hoc mobile networking, service officials said. “The nonproprietary waveforms SRW and WNW will provide the backbone of terrestrial connectivity for several units conducting operations during the Network Integration Evaluation this summer at White Sands Missile Range, NM. The waveforms will have to operate over variable desert and mountainous terrain and perform during diverse mission scenarios requiring mobile ad hoc connectivity,” said Paul Mehney, spokesman for […]

Next-Generation Blue Force Tracking System to be Featured in Army Exercise

Next-Generation Blue Force Tracking System to be Featured in Army Exercise

[author type="author"]Claire Heininger[/author] The latest version of the Army’s friendly force tracking and messaging software will get a key tryout with Soldiers as part of the unprecedented combined test and evaluation at Fort Bliss, TX, and White Sands Missile Range, NM, this month. Among the six programs of record undergoing limited user testing (LUT) is the new version of Force XXI Battle Command Brigade-and-Below/Blue Force Tracking (FBCB2/BFT), called Joint Capabilities Release (JCR). The new version is faster, more versatile, and better connected to the Marine Corps. “It is not only easier to navigate, but it is a lot faster,” said SSG Tony B. Sosa, a Military Intelligence System Maintainer/Integrator with […]

Army to Kick off Series of Integration Exercises for Tactical Network

Army to Kick off Series of Integration Exercises for Tactical Network

[author type="author"]Claire Heininger[/author] The Army will soon usher in a new approach to testing and delivering networked capabilities, with a six-week event that puts promising new technologies in Soldiers’ hands. With the network deemed the service’s top modernization priority, the spotlight will be on Fort Bliss, TX, and White Sands Missile Range, NM, as units from the 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division test-drive several Programs of Record (PORs) and more than two dozen systems from commercial-off-the-shelf suppliers and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The June-July event, known as the Network Integration Evaluation (NIE), is the first of four events leading up to a fully integrated Brigade Combat Team Network […]

Preparations Underway for Large-Scale Army Network Evaluation

Preparations Underway for Large-Scale Army Network Evaluation

[author type="author"]Katie Cain[/author] As preparations for the Army’s Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) kick into high gear, Soldiers, engineers, combat developers, and test officials are joining forces at Fort Bliss, TX, and White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), NM, to provide full-time support to what will be the Army’s largest, most robust network test and evaluation effort to date. The 3,800-plus Soldiers from the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Armored Division (2/1 AD) who are executing the six-week test and evaluation make up the first full brigade the Army has used in its test and evaluation process. The unit has spent the past several months preparing for the NIE in both field […]