The Insider

By Marjorie Censer
October 23, 2018 at 9:30 AM

Hitachi Vantara today closed on its acquisition of REAN Cloud, whose federal work will add six contracts to Hitachi Vantara Federal, according to the company's chief executive.

Dave Turner, who heads HVF, told Inside Defense his company is seeking to become an end-to-end data services provider for its federal customers. The company has long specialized in data storage, but will add the public cloud piece with REAN.

REAN's six contracts "are across both the civilian and defense communities," he said. That "marries nicely with our footprint, which is civilian, defense and intelligence communities."

REAN Cloud attracted attention when, earlier this year, the Defense Department awarded it a follow-on production agreement for cloud services worth nearly $1 billion. The deal was facilitated by the Defense Innovation Unit and followed prototype work REAN Cloud did for U.S. Transportation Command.

However, Oracle America filed a bid protest, which was upheld by the Government Accountability Office.

Turner said the original award indicated "the government saw something special in their capabilities and their technology platform to be able to make that step," he said. "That is still there, and that is really the reason that we were attracted to them."

By Marjorie Censer
October 23, 2018 at 9:14 AM

Science Applications International Corp. said today it is opening a virtual lab environment -- dubbed an "Innovation Factory" -- to help it "move at a pace similar to startups."

"SAIC Innovation Factory is managed by SAIC and uses technologies developed and refined by SAIC as well as Red Hat, the leading provider of open-source solutions," the company said. "The new Innovation Factory will enable customers to make rapid progress toward IT and Application transformation projects by providing DevSecOps teams who are expert at using Agile/DevOps practices combined with cloud-native architectures built on Red Hat OpenShift, the industry's most comprehensive enterprise Kubernetes platform."

The initial lab is being launched out of SAIC's Reston, VA, headquarters, according to SAIC.

By Justin Doubleday
October 22, 2018 at 4:59 PM

The White House announced today it has officially sent Congress the new national cyber strategy, including a classified annex addressing the increased flexibility the U.S. military now has to launch cyber attacks.

In a missive to relevant congressional committees, including the armed services panels, President Trump attached the national cyber strategy and a classified annex, according to a White House statement. The Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act requires the president to send Congress a report outlining U.S. policy on cyberspace, cybersecurity, cyber warfare and cyber deterrence. Lawmakers had long pressed successive administrations for an updated cyber deterrence strategy.

In September, national security adviser John Bolton announced the first updated national cybersecurity strategy in 15 years. He said Trump signed the new strategy based on "four pillars" of ensuring the security of federal networks and critical infrastructure, improving incident reporting, "peace through strength" commitments for deterring and responding to cyber aggression, and preserving a "vibrant digital economy."

Bolton also said the strategy's classified annex addresses Trump's move to repeal the Obama administration's Presidential Policy Directive-20 in order to ease restrictions on the Defense Department's use of offensive cyber capabilities.

Likewise, the Pentagon in September released a summary of DOD's new cyber strategy, which carves out a more active role for the military in protecting the United States from cyber attacks and engaging in "day-to-day" competition in cyberspace with Russia and China.

By John Liang
October 22, 2018 at 4:35 PM

The European Union today called on the United States and Russia to tread carefully over the idea of abandoning the Intermediate-range Nuclear Forces Treaty.

In a statement attributed to a "spokesperson," the EU said the INF Treaty "contributed to the end of the cold-war and constitutes a pillar of European security architecture since it entered into force 30 years ago."

The EU notes that the pact has resulted in nearly 3,000 missiles with nuclear and conventional warheads being removed and verifiably destroyed. "The Treaty is also an important contribution to disarmament obligations under Article VI of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty," the statement adds.

The EU calls on the United States and Russia "to remain engaged in constructive dialogue to preserve the INF Treaty and ensure its full and verifiable implementation, which is crucial for Europe's and global security."

On Oct. 22, President Trump, talking about the INF Treaty, said Russia had "violated the agreement."

"They've been violating it for many years. And I don't know why President Obama didn't negotiate or pull out," he said. "And we're not going to let them violate a nuclear agreement and go out and do weapons, and we're not allowed to.

"We're the ones that have stayed in the agreement, and we've honored the agreement. But Russia has not, unfortunately, honored the agreement," he continued. "So we're going to terminate the agreement and we're going to pull out."

In its statement today, the EU said it expects Russian to "address serious concerns" regarding its compliance with the INF Treaty, it also expects the United States to "consider the consequences of its possible withdrawal."

"The world doesn't need a new arms race that would benefit no one and on the contrary would bring even more instability," the statement reads.

By Ashley Tressel
October 22, 2018 at 4:13 PM

The Army's cross-functional team focused on modernizing the tactical network is reviewing white papers from two technology exchanges held this year that asked industry to respond to identified gaps in the service's current network.

The first event, focused on potential operations in a contested environment, was held Feb. 6 and 7 at Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD. The second, focused on distributed computing solutions -- including the potential to deliver cloud services to tactical formations -- was held Aug. 1 and 2 in Raleigh, NC.

The Army is reviewing 78 white papers from the second event and plans to respond to industry by the end of next month, according to a notice updated Oct. 17 on Federal Business Opportunities.

Selected vendors will participate in a no-cost demo to be held in December or January.

"At these demonstrations, vendors will show their capability focused on technical maturity, operational relevance and technical ability to integrate into the Army's network design," the notice states.

By John Liang
October 22, 2018 at 2:08 PM

This Monday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Army's Bradley replacement vehicle effort as well as cyber defense.

Inside Defense reviewed a recent memo, marked not for public distribution and signed by Next Generation Combat Vehicle cross-functional team Director Brig. Gen. Richard Coffman, that conveyed updated requirements for the Bradley replacement vehicle effort:

Army sets four OMFV capability priorities: growth, gun, FLIR, protection

Army leaders, refining the requirement for the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle program, have prioritized four capabilities for a Bradley replacement: growth potential, the main gun, an advanced forward looking infrared sensor and active protection systems.

Some recent related Bradley replacement vehicle news, in case you missed it:

Contractors debut possible Bradley replacement vehicles before Army releases requirements

Industry offerings for the planned Bradley Fighting Vehicle replacement run the gamut as the Army prepares to issue a draft request for proposals and complete a final requirements document that avoids being overly prescriptive.

Appropriators' support for Bradley upgrade cancellation bodes well for NGCV

An $80 million cut to the Army's Bradley upgrade program in the fiscal year 2019 spending bill signals congressional support for the service's decision to forego improvements to a legacy system in favor of investing in a new replacement.

Our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity look at the Pentagon's efforts to deter and defend against cyberattacks and their impact on private industry:

DOD has been tasked with securing systems, but industry may determine effort's success

President Trump has tasked the Defense Department with taking a more active and expansive role in protecting the nation's critical infrastructure from cyberattacks by foreign adversaries, with efforts to secure the supply chain having emerged as the front line in this battle.

More cyber defense news, in case you missed it:

DOD officials say NIST cybersecurity guide will prompt government-wide procurement reforms

GAITHERSBURG, MD -- Defense Department officials responsible for implementing data-protection acquisition rules say cybersecurity guidelines from the National Institute of Standards and Technology -- currently being considered for revision -- will lead to a government-wide approach to securing sensitive information through widespread procurement reforms.

NIST official: Revisions coming for data protection guide, will address 'advanced' cyber threats

GAITHERSBURG, MD -- The National Institute of Standards and Technology is planning to issue a draft second revision to its guidelines for controlled unclassified information handled by the Defense Department and government contractors, in order to better address "advanced persistent threats," according to a key NIST official.

By Justin Doubleday
October 22, 2018 at 1:32 PM

The Pentagon has not been directed to send additional troops to the southern border, despite President Trump tweeting that a "caravan" of refugees from Central America poses a national emergency.

"We have not received any guidance on any additional support required, but we certainly remain postured," Pentagon spokesman Col. Rob Manning told reporters today. He confirmed that 2,100 National Guard personnel remain stationed at the southern border, providing support to the Department of Homeland Security.

"Sadly, it looks like Mexico's Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan heading to the Southern Border of the United States," Trump tweeted earlier this morning. "Criminals and unknown Middle Easterners are mixed in. I have alerted Border Patrol and Military that this is a National Emergy [sic]. Must change laws!"

The Defense Department has been called upon to play an active role in border security by the Trump administration this year. In April, the president ordered National Guard forces to the southern border, and the Pentagon established a border security cell to coordinate the expanded military assistance.

Congress has allowed DOD to shift $120 million in its budget to pay for the National Guard personnel stationed at the border, while the Pentagon is also considering a plan to spend $450 million to enhance fencing and construct more barriers along 31 miles of an Arizona bombing range to help shore up border security.

Meanwhile, Democrats have criticized the Trump administration's use of the military on the border.

By Tony Bertuca
October 22, 2018 at 5:15 AM

The top defense companies will hold a series of earnings calls this week, while senior Pentagon officials are scheduled to appear at events around the Washington area.

Tuesday

The National Defense Industrial Association holds a breakfast with the Navy's acquisition chief.

The Association of the United States Army holds an event on Army readiness.

The National Defense Industrial Association hosts a science and engineering technology forum to discuss Army innovation.

Lockheed Martin and United Technologies executives are slated to discuss quarterly earnings.

Wednesday

Boeing, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman executives are set to discuss quarterly earnings.

Thursday

Leidos and Raytheon executives are expected to discuss quarterly earnings.

The Atlantic Council hosts a discussion on security in Northern Europe.

Friday

Washington Technology hosts an event on the 2019 outlook, with defense industry organizations slated to attend.

By John Liang
October 22, 2018 at 5:10 AM

Some must-reads from this week's edition of Inside the Army:

1. Industry offerings for the planned Bradley Fighting Vehicle replacement run the gamut as the Army prepares to issue a draft request for proposals and complete a final requirements document that avoids being overly prescriptive.

Full story: Contractors debut possible Bradley replacement vehicles

2. Army leaders, refining the requirement for the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle program, have prioritized four capabilities for a Bradley replacement: growth potential, the main gun, an advanced forward looking infrared sensor and active protection systems.

Full story: Army sets four OMFV capability priorities: growth, gun, FLIR, protection

3. The Army is speeding up the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft program thanks to lessons learned from the success of its Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstrator effort, according to the director of the Future Vertical Lift cross-functional team.

Full story: Army now pursuing two future aircraft replacements concurrently

4. The Army's vice chief of staff and under secretary have spent the past year crafting "business rules" and "metrics" for deciding when to stop upgrading legacy systems and start acquiring new capabilities as the service attempts to modernize its fleets.

Full story: McConville: Army setting up 'decision points' on when to leave behind old systems

By John Liang
October 22, 2018 at 5:05 AM

Some must-reads from this week's issue of Inside the Navy:

1. To achieve its desired 355-ship fleet, the Navy will require in future years an annual shipbuilding budget of $28.9 billion, nearly $5 billion more than the service received in fiscal year 2019 and one-third more than the service has estimated, according to a new analysis published last week by the Congressional Budget Office.

Full story: CBO: Navy's shipbuilding plan requires $28.9 billion per year going forward

2. The Navy expects to award fabrication contracts in early 2019 for phase two of a new unmanned undersea vehicle program, according to an officer overseeing the effort.

Full story: XLUUV prototype contracts to be awarded in early 2019

3. The Marine Corps plans to use an other transaction agreement for the Armored Reconnaissance Vehicle prototype to speed the acquisition process, according to a senior service official.

Full story: Marine Corps will use OTA for Armored Reconnaissance Vehicle prototype

4. The Navy's top acquisition official said last week the service is looking at ways to shift and save funding for its upcoming budget request, citing the recently canceled Assault Amphibious Vehicle survivability upgrade program as an example.

Full story: Navy acquisition chief says service looking at budget trade-offs

By John Liang
October 19, 2018 at 2:09 PM

This Friday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on a Congressional Budget Office report on the Navy's latest shipbuilding plan, Army PNT requirements, the Air Force's Huey replacement helicopter program and more.

The Congressional Budget Office weighs in on the Navy's latest 30-year shipbuilding plan:

CBO: Navy's shipbuilding plan requires $28.9 billion per year going forward

To achieve its desired 355-ship fleet, the Navy will require in future years an annual shipbuilding budget of $28.9 billion, nearly $5 billion more than the service received in fiscal year 2019 and one-third more than the service has estimated, according to a new analysis published this week by the Congressional Budget Office.

Document: CBO report on the Navy's 30-year shipbuilding plan


We have more news from AUSA's recent annual conference:

Army forming PNT requirements for all future mounted, dismounted platforms

The Army has completed a capability development document for assured positioning, navigation and timing in all new mounted platforms, according to a service official.

Army now pursuing two future aircraft replacements concurrently

The Army is speeding up the Future Attack Reconnaissance Aircraft program thanks to lessons learned from the success of its Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstrator effort, according to the director of the Future Vertical Lift cross-functional team.

(Want more AUSA coverage? Click here.)

An Air Force spokeswoman recently provided new details on the service's MH-139 helicopter contract:

Huey replacement contract includes $408M for R&D, $1.9B for procurement

The Air Force's contract with Boeing to develop and field a new MH-139 utility helicopter fleet allocates $408 million for development and $1.9 billion for procurement, a price tag that is roughly half the estimated total program cost the service forecasted in budget documents for the UH-1N Huey replacement program earlier this year.

Keep an eye out for a Navy mine warfare plan:

Coffman: Navy preparing mine warfare plan

ANNAPOLIS, MD -- The Navy's expeditionary warfare office is preparing an overarching mine warfare plan, which will eventually be approved by the service's top admiral and general, to more clearly communicate its strategies and objectives, according to a Marine Corps general overseeing the effort.

Lastly, we have some cyber defense news from our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity:

DOD officials say NIST cybersecurity guide will prompt government-wide procurement reforms

GAITHERSBURG, MD -- Defense Department officials responsible for implementing data-protection acquisition rules say cybersecurity guidelines from the National Institute of Standards and Technology -- currently being considered for revision -- will lead to a government-wide approach to securing sensitive information through widespread procurement reforms.

By Mallory Shelbourne
October 19, 2018 at 10:59 AM

The Navy has awarded a $57.8 million contract to Austal USA for the Expeditionary Fast Transport 13, according to a Thursday Pentagon announcement.

The contract is for long-lead-time material including reduction gears, diesel engines and water jets, Austal said in a press release.

"The EPF class provides high-speed, shallow-draft transportation capability to support the intra-theater maneuver of personnel, supplies and equipment for the Navy, Marine Corps, and Army," the Defense Department announcement reads.

The Pentagon said it estimates the vessel will be finished by November 2021.

The Navy has received nine EPF ships from Austal since the company won the contract to build the first vessel in 2008.

The funds for the EPF 13 were awarded using an undefinitized contract action, meaning the terms of the contract have not yet been set.

By Justin Katz
October 19, 2018 at 10:56 AM

ANNAPOLIS, MD -- Early findings from the Navy's studies on a common hull for five unique missions are driving the service to reconsider its requirements to avoid "predisposition" toward an answer, according to two Navy officers responsible for strategic sealift.

In a September request for information, the Navy said it "remains interested" in the development of a common hull auxiliary multi-mission platform -- dubbed CHAMP -- but is revising the base ship characteristics by mission to permit "purpose built, non-reconfigurable single mission concepts."

"What we've figured out is that mission set is very broad," Capt. Scot Searles, strategic sealift and theater sealift program manager, said at an expeditionary warfare conference here. The missions the Navy wants CHAMP to address include strategic sealift, aviation intermediate maintenance support, medical services, command and control and submarine tending.

"We have some early returns from some of the investigations we've done so far that [say] a single hull doesn't make sense, and so we want to make sure we're investigating and not trying to predisposition the answer," Searles said.

Rear Adm. William Galinis, program executive officer for ships, said information coming from a requirements evaluation team for CHAMP suggested a single hull form for all five missions "may not make sense."

"It's still a concept that is very much evolving," he added.

By Marjorie Censer
October 19, 2018 at 10:51 AM

The industry-government advisory panel on technical data rights -- set to influence Pentagon intellectual property reform -- has put together a slate of recommendations that mainly could be implemented without legislative changes.

Inside Defense has learned from a source familiar with the panel that the "vast majority" -- or 19 -- of the recommendations "were entirely things DOD could do tomorrow."

Eight of the recommendations would require changes to U.S. code, while three more would institute pilot programs.

First mandated by Section 813 of the Fiscal Year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act, the group, sometimes dubbed the "813 panel," met for the final time in April, according to a Defense Department spokesman.

The panel, which includes government and defense industry officials, will submit a final report to the Office of the Secretary of Defense, which will then deliver it to Congress.

The spokesman said the Pentagon is waiting on the Section 813 report before implementing new rules on intellectual property acquisition.

By Rick Weber
October 19, 2018 at 10:37 AM

GAITHERSBURG, MD -- The National Institute of Standards and Technology is planning to issue a draft second revision to its guidelines for controlled unclassified information handled by the Defense Department and government contractors, in order to better address "advanced persistent threats," according to a key NIST official.

The upcoming draft revisions are based on recent assessments that information critical for national security requires "enhanced" protections, the NIST official said at a public meeting updating industry and government officials on the data requirements at NIST headquarters on Thursday.

NIST's Ron Ross said a draft revision to NIST guideline 800-171 would be issued before the end of the year for public comment. The revisions are "just in the planning stages this week" and a formal announcement will be issued soon. Ross said the enhanced requirements would be proposed for comment as an appendix to the overall document to offer additional protections beyond "basic" controls outlined in chapter three of the guidelines.

The NIST guidelines are the basis for Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement, or DFARS, for cybersecurity risks issued in 2017 and still being implemented by DOD.

Ross said the enhanced requirements will be offered for government contractors and other non-federal entities who determine they are handling "very critical information" being targeted by adversaries because of its national security implications. Ross said the upcoming appendix is based on the recognition that the basic protections of the guidelines "can't address all threats."

Revision one of NIST Special Publication 800-171 was issued in December 2016, with an update released last June. NIST officials at this week's meeting said the requirements of the document are now contained in more than a million federal contracts.

"The security requirements apply to all components of nonfederal systems and organizations that process, store, or transmit CUI, or that provide security protection for such components," according to NIST. "The requirements are intended for use by federal agencies in contractual vehicles or other agreements established between those agencies and nonfederal organizations."