February 21, 2012

Contract Award: NSI to enhance U.S. Air Force Intelligence Analysis and Reporting capabilities

News Report

As announced in a recent press release, NCI has been awarded a competitive task order valued at approximately $5 million under its Air Force Network Centric Solutions (NETCENTS) contract to standardize and integrate the Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS) Analysis and Reporting Team (DART) system across the U.S. Air Force DCGS enterprise. The project has a 24 month period of performance.

This effort is part of the “DART Standardization Across the Enterprise” initiative focused on standardizing a set of Multi-Intelligence tools that are used in support of U.S. Air Force DCGS missions.

The Technology

DCGS is the U.S. Air Force's premier globally networked intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance system. DCGS is based upon a network centric system-of-systems architecture that conducts collaborative intelligence operations and provides both physical and electronic distribution of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance data.

The DCGS produces intelligence information collected by the U-2, RQ-4 Global Hawk, MQ-9 Reaper and MQ-1 Predator. The DCGS currently participates in operations throughout the world including those led by United Nations, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, U.S. Central Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Forces Korea, U.S. Northern Command, U.S. Pacific Command and U.S. Southern Command operations throughout the world.

Within the DCGS, the DART mission is to improve the quality, responsiveness and relevance of the intelligence analysis that U.S. Air Force provides to its customers. The DART accomplishes this mission in three ways. First, it correlates and fuse data derived from the multiple ISR platforms and sensors that DCGS operates, manages or exploits. Second, it further combines the AF DCGS-derived information with other available intelligence data from non-DCGS sources to provide improved context in the weapon system reporting. Third, it provides a regionalized 24/7 customer focus that allows DCGS to rapidly adapt collection tactics, products, and dissemination methods to meet changing customer needs.

The DART analyst needs to be able to perform timely queries, to a variety of internal and external sources, correlate data, produce products, and post those products to the appropriate locations to enable the timely and effective exploitation of the ISR data.

The Context

Raytheon is the prime contractor for the U.S. Air Force DCGS contract, with Lockheed-Martin, L-3 Communications, Northrop Grumman, Hughes, Goodrich and Houston-Fearless operating as major system contractors.

As already illustrated in this blog, Raytheon was recently awarded a $179.5 million follow-on contract by the U.S. Air Force to provide Contractor Field Service (CFS) support for U-2 sensors, data links and the Air Force Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS). Raytheon has been prime on the CFS program providing support to the warfighter since the original contract was awarded in 1999.

Under the terms of the last DCGS contract, NCI will partner with Raytheon to provide a unique solution for the DART standardization and integration requirement that not only eliminates unnecessary spending for duplicate systems, tools, and software, but also enables DCGS operators to perform DART functions smarter and faster.

References: NCI (1), U.S. Air Force (2), C4I Technology News (3)

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