Joint ASA ALT and AFC statement on the Integrated Visual Augmentation System

By Karen Saunders and Gen. John M. MurrayOctober 18, 2021

The Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, in coordination with Army Futures Command, has decided to shift the Integrated Visual Augmentation System operational test to May 2022 and its fielding to September 2022.

The Army did not halt or stop the IVAS program, and remains committed to getting the best equipment in the hands of our Soldiers as quickly as possible. The shift in the IVAS program will allow the Army and industry team to continue to enhance the IVAS technology platform, ensuring Soldiers achieve overmatch in multi-domain operations.

The Soldier Lethality Cross-Functional Team, Program Executive Office Soldier, and Microsoft are working together to develop and field IVAS – a technology platform for fighting, rehearsing and training – which will provide close-combat forces with unprecedented capabilities that are extensible to any combat environment or combat platform.

Developers used the Microsoft HoloLens to build a system capable of rapid target acquisition, navigation, target marking and a host of other features, including a field of view nearly twice as wide as those offered by current systems.

At 80 degrees, IVAS pushed the boundaries of waveguide technology capabilities, and the field of view began to lose resolution. By making minor reductions, developers are finding greater quality and clearer visibility.

The process will require a little more time, but it will still result in the fielding of a next-generation combat system six to 10 years ahead of the traditional acquisition program timelines.

Calculated risk and time for adjustment have been baked into our processes, and are vital to rapid Army modernization practices. The new timeline does not affect contract agreements.

At this year’s Association of the United States Army annual event we stated, the Army has to be willing to accept some early risk, or we will never be able to keep up with the pace of change required to achieve and maintain overmatch in MDO.

Karen Saunders is the senior official performing the duties of the assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology. Gen. John M. Murray is the commanding general of Army Futures Command.