As the Defense Department scrambles to keep ahead of China, it’s relying more and more on public-private partnerships called consortia to connect it to innovative high-tech firms. The latest example comes in an announcement Monday that only members of the National Spectrum Consortium can bid on pilot projects to install prototype 5G networks to manage radar and radio spectrum, “smart warehouse” logistics, and other functions on four military bases.
Since declaring full operational capability (FOC) in October 2018, the Information Warfare Research Project (IWRP) continues to surpass significant milestones designed to accelerate the delivery of technology to the warfighter.
At the Mobile World Congress in Los Angeles in October, the Department of Defense unveiled plans for several 5G testbeds that have the potential to revolutionize how the government shares radio spectrum, trains service members and moves materiel around the nation and the world.
Seeking to find faster routes to emergent, urgent, and innovative naval surface and maritime capabilities, the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) recently established a new Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) allowing increased collaboration with a larger industry base generating faster, flexible, and more innovative solutions for the warfighter. The NSWCDD Naval Surface Technology and Innovation OTA was awarded to the Naval Surface Technology and Innovation Consortium (NSTIC) on June 12 and was showcased at an industry day three months later, at the Fredericksburg Expo and Conference Center in Fredericksburg, VA., attended by more than 300 attendees.
The lunch highlighted the history of Veterans Day, including its origin as Armistice Day, as well as more modern examples of valor on the battlefield. Attendees shared stories of surviving Medal of Honor recipients whose feats of courage and fortitude exemplify the fighting and, in some cases lifesaving capabilities of military service members.
The Army’s Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium aims to accelerate the advancement of noninvasive hemorrhage detection technology. According to the MTEC, hemorrhage, or life-threatening blood loss, has accounted for more than 33% of prehospital deaths and 50% of deaths occurring within 24 hours after a traumatic injury.
On-orbit transfer and maneuvering capabilities also could potentially enable future national security satellites to avoid debris or anti-satellite weapons, or underpin space weapons development.
Four military installations, yet to be named, will host experiments in VR training, tracking supplies in “smart warehouses,” and – most importantly – sharing scarce spectrum.
The Aviation & Missile Technology Consortium, an entity hosted by the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Aviation & Missile Center, has had a resoundingly successful first year.
Perhaps the best example of SMC’s rapid prototyping approach is the Space Enterprise Consortium, or SpEC. Established in 2017 through an other transaction authority, or OTA, SpEC is comprised of 325 members who can apply to build space-related prototypes.