ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (April 1, 2015) -- Army engineers met with more than 100 industry representatives to discuss efforts to integrate communications, electronic warfare, and position, navigation and timing capabilities into common modular hardware during the technology day here April 1.
The Hardware/Software Convergence Technology Day, hosted by the Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center, or CERDEC, provided potential technology partners with an opportunity to learn about the mission and activities of the HW/SW Convergence Working-Level Integrated Product Team.
The goal of the HW/SW-WIPT is to develop and execute a plan to achieve a modular, open family of hardware and software components for implementing interoperable Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance, or C4ISR, and Electronic Warfare capabilities on Army ground vehicles.
"We're building on prior Navy and DARPA science and technology investments to develop leap-ahead technologies to provide an intelligent C4ISR network that provides seamless and cooperative operation of RF systems. The time is right to change the way C4ISR/EW systems are engineered and integrated onto platforms," said Dr. Paul Zablocky, director, CERDEC Space and Terrestrial Communications Directorate.
Zablocky opened the morning session, followed by an overview of Hardware/Software Convergence by Benjamin Peddicord, chief, CERDEC Intelligence and Information Warfare Directorate's Intel Technology and Architecture Branch.
"The point of today's technology day really is to make sure that our industry partners have an early look at what we're doing, and can help us avoid making some mistakes. We want to create a common modular open architecture that will solve some problems, but we don't necessarily want to constrain solutions that you can provide for us," Peddicord said.
The morning continued with presentations on the architectures and specifications that have been selected, to include Vehicular Integration for C4ISR/EW Interoperability, or VICTORY, Modular Open RF Architecture, or MORA, OpenVPX and REDHAWK.
Industry members asked questions and addressed concerns to the group throughout the presentations.
The event concluded with afternoon private sessions between industry representatives and CERDEC, where they could have a more detailed dialogue on the architecture specifications and present product offerings they felt were relevant to CERDEC's HW/SW convergence activities.
"We're open, willing and anxious to have your [industry] feedback on these things, and we're willing to make changes," Petticord said. "But we think we have a really good start; we've done a lot of work and want to let you know what we're doing. Hopefully we'll have your help contributing and improving the capabilities of the Army going forward."
CERDEC, in cooperation with Program Executive Office Command Control Communications -- Tactical, Program Manager Tactical Radios, has released a Request for Information "on how an interested contractor could implement an architecture which maximizes the use of open architectures and standards, reduces size weight and power, or SWaP, and facilitates the use of common radio frequency (RF) component types across communications and EW technologies on Army platforms." Submissions are due by April 17.
The Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center is part of the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, which has the mission to develop technology and engineering solutions for America's Soldiers.
RDECOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Materiel Command. AMC is the Army's premier provider of materiel readiness -- technology, acquisition support, materiel development, logistics power projection, and sustainment -- to the total force, across the spectrum of joint military operations. If a Soldier shoots it, drives it, flies it, wears it, eats it or communicates with it, AMC provides it.