BELCAMP, Md. (Nov. 30, 2021) — The director of the Army’s Command, Control, Computers, Communications, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C5ISR), Joseph Welch, detailed how a recent reorganization is enabling the organization to meet the Army’s modernization needs, and how industry partners can provide support during an AFCEA Aberdeen Chapter luncheon held last month.
To optimize its contributions to Army modernization, the C5ISR Center reduced functional stovepipes and moved to a structure that focuses on developing effective, integrated solutions that enable decision dominance, Welch explained.
“I believe in accountability, so if we are given a mission to do something from a [science and technology (S&T)] perspective it’s not just a best effort thing, we have objectives and we stick to them. I want to be very clear and upfront about where we see opportunity, I think that’s only fair to us and to [industry],” said Welch.
The new organizational structure enables better internal collaboration between the Center’s various mission spaces, emphasizes practical science and technology grounded in the Soldier’s operational needs, standardizes key processes, streamlines cross-organizational efforts in support of S&T and reimbursable missions, and facilitates a broader systems-of-systems perspective, he explained.
This will result in more holistic solutions that consider not only capability development, but how that capability integrates, compliments and supports other capabilities across the Army’s modernization priorities and the department’s Joint All Domain Command and Control (JADC2) initiative.
The C5ISR Center missions are streamlined into two directorates, each led by a Senior Executive Service member: the Research and Technology Integration (RTI) Directorate, led by Dr. Donald Reago, and the Engineering and Systems Integration (ESI) Directorate, led by Michael Monteleone.
The Army is always looking for innovative solutions, and wants to leverage industry talent and resources, explained Welch, who noted Cooperative Research and Development Agreements (CRADA) are a way to accomplish this.
CRADAs are win-win opportunities which allow a two-way transfer of information between the Army and industry.
“We get to learn more about your technical capabilities and you get to learn more about the threat environment we face in a classified environment, even without having a contract. Our understanding of your capabilities is important as well. The things that we are able to learn through CRADAS that we share can be very helpful,” said Welch.
CRADA negotiations with vendors who wish to partner with the Army can be as short as eight days or last up to 18 months, depending on the package preparation and requirements. The Army’s goal for any CRADA is to help to build focused technology roadmaps that will get better technology into the hands of Soldiers sooner, Welch noted, adding that CRADAs enable industry to better tailor technology development before entering the competitive acquisition process.
Welch encouraged industry representatives interested in partnering with C5ISR Center to engage in a dialogue.
“I’ll tell you where I see something not fitting or why I don’t see it fitting and I think that’s the value that we have to be able to bring. You have decisions to make as well as your companies about where you’re going to invest your resources and I want to make sure we are good partners in that,” said Welch.
For more information about CRADAs and partnering with the C5ISR Center, visit c5isr.ccdc.army.mil/opportunities_and_services/business_opportunities.
The C5ISR Center is the Army’s applied research and advanced technology development center for C5ISR capabilities. As the Army’s primary integrator of C5ISR technologies and systems, the center develops and matures capabilities that support all six Army modernization priorities, enabling information dominance and tactical overmatch for the joint warfighter.
The C5ISR Center is an element of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command (DEVCOM). Through collaboration across the command’s core technical competencies, DEVCOM leads in the discovery, development and delivery of the technology-based capabilities required to make Soldiers more lethal to win our nation’s wars and come home safely. DEVCOM is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Futures Command.