The INSIDER daily digest -- Feb. 19, 2021

By John Liang / February 19, 2021 at 1:59 PM

This Friday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Pentagon's Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification program, a new Navy "software factory," the Army's upcoming Project Convergence and more.

We start off with some cyber defense news from our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity:

Pentagon plans March release for first contract solicitations with CMMC language

The Defense Department is expecting to release its first request for proposals containing requirements from its Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification program in March, according to Pentagon acquisition Chief Information Security Officer Katie Arrington.

A new Navy software facility aims to change the paradigm for software development from platform-specific tools by delivering new capabilities with utility across ship classes:

Navy eyes spring for full-strength launch of new Forge software factory

The Navy is readying plans this spring to begin in earnest collaboration with industry and academia at a prototype "software factory" called the Forge -- an entity that aims to accelerate delivery of new capabilities by the program executive office for integrated warfare systems to the surface combatant fleet.

Army officials over the past few months have already been sharing bits of information on what their cross-functional teams will be bringing to Project Convergence 2021 as well as lessons learned from last year:

Army organizations working on improving data collection, upgrading tech ahead of Project Convergence 2021

The Army is conducting several communications exercises and upgrading technologies and data collection efforts as it gears up for the second annual sensor-to-shooter learning campaign known as Project Convergence, service officials told Inside Defense in a recent interview.

The United States and Israel have begun developing the successor to the Arrow-3 ballistic missile defense system:

U.S., Israel announce new Israeli ballistic missile interceptor project: Arrow-4

The U.S. and Israel today announced the start of a new collaborative weapon system project: Arrow-4, a "next-generation" guided-missile interceptor -- a project neither previously disclosed by the Missile Defense Agency nor explicitly authorized by Congress -- that aims to improve the Missile Eastern nation's ability to defeat both endo- and exoatmospheric threats.

Some artificial intelligence news:

Tech commission recommends major funding shifts to fuel Pentagon AI advances

The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence continued deliberations about its final report this week, discussing new "blueprints" for government action, including shifting billions toward the Defense Department's AI and emerging technology initiatives.

Inside Defense recently interviewed Army Brig. Gen. John Rafferty, who spoke about the Extended Range Cannon Artillery program:

ERCA development on track for 2023 fielding

Development has continued on the Extended Range Cannon Artillery and its associated propellant and projectile since a prototype with an Excalibur round hit a target at 70 kilometers in December, the director of the Long Range Precision Fires Cross-Functional Team said last week.