The Insider

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 5:15 PM

Lockheed Martin said today it has named Timothy Cahill senior vice president of Lockheed Martin International, effective Oct. 14.

He succeeds Richard Edwards, who will become strategic adviser to the chief executive.

Since 2016, Cahill has served as vice president of integrated air and missile defense systems at Lockheed's missiles and fire control business. He came to the contractor in 1995.

Edwards has led Lockheed Martin International since January 2018.

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 4:01 PM

BAE Systems' U.S. business said today it has appointed former Army Under Secretary Patrick Murphy to its board of directors.

His term will run through April 2022, according to the contractor.

Murphy, who also previously served in the House of Representatives, was Army under secretary during the Obama administration. He also served as acting Army secretary.

By Justin Katz
October 2, 2019 at 2:33 PM

The Navy this week said it began the second phase of a secretive unmanned surface vessel program but is still not disclosing what industry teams are participating.

"The second phase of the Ghost Fleet Overlord program commenced with the award of contract modifications to the two industry teams who participated in Phase I," the service said in an Oct. 1 statement. The service did not state the value of the contracts.

Overlord is an experimental USV developed by the Pentagon's Strategic Capabilities Office and has become the basis for the Navy's Large Unmanned Surface Vessel. The Pentagon last year awarded phase one Overlord contracts to two industry teams, but at the time did not disclose which vendors received the contracts.

Inside Defense first reported in October that L3Harris subsidiary ASV Global and the maritime technology firm Gibbs & Cox were the two awardees.

"Phase II will be conducted using the same ships from Phase I and will focus on the integration of government-furnished command-and-control systems and payloads and involve more complex and challenging naval experimentation," according to the Navy statement.

"Phase II will complete in Fiscal Year 2021 at which point the Overlord vessels will transition to the Navy for further experimentation," the statement continued.

Defense Department spokesman Air Force Lt. Col. Robert Carver declined to comment on which contractors are participating in the Overlord program.

Representatives from the two companies did not immediately return requests for comment.

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 2:22 PM

British company QinetiQ said today it has agreed to acquire Manufacturing Technologies, dubbed MTEQ, in a deal that would more than double its U.S. business.

QinetiQ said it will pay $105 million on completion of the deal as well as an earn-out worth up to $20 million based on financial targets over three years.

MTEQ specializes in sensing technology and counts the U.S. Army among its customers. The contractor, which is based in two locations in Virginia and has 360 employees, generated sales during the last year of $167 million.

QinetiQ said the deal will allow it to create a U.S. operation of about $300 million in sales and 750 employees.

By John Liang
October 2, 2019 at 2:01 PM

This Wednesday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on U.S. Transportation Command, the Army's Future Armed Reconnaissance Aircraft, Air Force launch mission support contracts and more.

The head of U.S. Transportation Command spoke with reporters at a Defense Writers Group breakfast this morning:

TRANSCOM crafting follow-on capability study with a broader scope

U.S. Transportation Command has begun work on a follow-up to last year's mobility capability requirements study that will have a broader scope than the 2019 analysis and will consider what forces are needed to support the National Defense Strategy.

Bell is one of five vendors to unveil prototypes for the Future Armed Reconnaissance Aircraft, the others being AVX Aircraft-L3 Technologies, Boeing, Karem Aircraft and Sikorsky:

Bell unveils FARA prototype

Bell unveiled its proposal for the Future Armed Reconnaissance Aircraft, the 360 Invictus, yesterday at its headquarters in Arlington, VA.

United Launch Alliance this week won a pair of launch mission support contracts:

Air Force awards launch support contracts, ends ELC arrangement

The Air Force this week awarded United Launch Alliance two major fixed-price launch mission support contracts that represent the last remnants of a sole-sourced block-buy deal and, the service says, brings it into compliance with a fiscal year 2016 congressional requirement that it eliminate its practice of awarding cost-plus incentive contracts for mission support.

The Global Hawk unmanned aerial system's communications network won't be upgraded anytime soon:

Air Force defers plan to modernize RQ-4 communications, reviewing development resources

The Air Force has indefinitely delayed an effort to update the RQ-4 Global Hawk's communications network and is "in the process of assessing and realigning resources" for the unmanned aerial vehicle program's many development projects.

The Navy is reorganizing its acquisition office:

Geurts: Multiple structural changes to Navy acquisition offices to take effect today

The Navy is restructuring several high-level acquisition directorates alongside the recent establishment of a new senior civilian position for sustainment, according to a memo obtained by Inside Defense.

Document: Navy memo on acquisition office reorganization

By Justin Katz
October 2, 2019 at 12:15 PM

The Navy this summer created an offshoot of an aviation maintenance initiative championed by top Pentagon brass that is aimed at improving the turnaround times of shipyard maintenance availabilities.

The effort, dubbed Naval Sustainment System -- Shipyards, is based on the similarly named aviation program being implemented at the service's Fleet Readiness Centers.

Navy Secretary Richard Spencer and Vice Adm. Dewolfe Miller, commander of naval air forces, have said the aviation program is focused on improving maintenance practices by bringing in industry to view the fleet's work firsthand. The Navy awarded a $21 million contract to Boston Consulting Group last year to begin implementing changes.

Norfolk Naval Shipyard announced last month one of the first efforts under the new initiative, NSS-S, is scrutinizing the current maintenance availability for the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier George H.W. Bush (CVN-77), which arrived in Norfolk, VA, in February.

"One of the immediate improvements on the project as part of NSS-S was implementing a topside temporary material storage area for NNSY's Outside Machine Shop (Shop 38) on the carrier flight deck. The material storage area improves accessibility and convenience for mechanics performing jobs onboard," according to the shipyard’s statement.

Navy spokeswoman Anna Taylor told Inside Defense in a statement yesterday that Naval Sea Systems Command is spearheading the program with efforts starting at Norfolk and Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, WA. The service will eventually expand its efforts to all four public shipyards.

The Boston Consulting Group, the firm hired to improve the Navy's aviation enterprise, has completed a six-week assessment of both Norfolk and Puget Sound's facilities, Taylor added.

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 9:43 AM

VT Group said this week it has acquired DELTA Resources, a 350-employee company specializing in naval systems engineering and technical services for the Navy.

Alexandria,VA-based DELTA was founded in 2000 and counts Naval Sea Systems Command and the Navy's program executive offices among its customers, VT said.

"DELTA Resources also delivers information technology, cloud implementation, and cybersecurity engineering services to a growing customer base that includes the U.S. Army and the Defense Information Systems Agency," VT Group added.

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 9:39 AM

BWX Technologies said today it has begun reopening its TRISO nuclear fuel production line and will soon expand its capacity to meet "client interests in Department of Defense microreactors, space reactors and civil advanced reactors."

TRISO, the company said, refers to a specific design of uranium nuclear reactor fuel. This type, the company said, can withstand extreme heat.

BWXT said in the next few months, it will add equipment and staff to its facility to restart production. Within about 2.5 years, it will finish capacity upgrades, the company said.

"In conjunction with its capacity upgrades, BWXT has plans to hire up to 60 additional workers to augment its existing experienced and trained TRISO fuel manufacturing team," BWXT added. "Positions such as engineers, technicians, quality analysis specialists and others will need to be filled at its Lynchburg, Virginia facility, where the activity will be located."

By Marjorie Censer
October 2, 2019 at 8:00 AM

FLIR Systems said today it has acquired the intellectual property and certain assets of Aria Insights, previously known as CyPhy Works.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Aria, which was founded in 2008 by iRobot co-founder Helen Greiner, specialized in tethered small unmanned aerial systems, FLIR said. The company ceased operations in March of this year.

FLIR said Aria's assets will be integrated into its unmanned systems and integrated solutions division, which also includes its acquisitions of Prox Dynamics in 2016 and both Aeryon Labs and Endeavor Robotics this year.

In an interview with Inside Defense, Roger Wells, general manager of FLIR's unmanned systems and integrated solutions division, said the company has sought to enhance its unmanned business.

"We've been focused in on really trying to add valuable technology and IP to our existing portfolio and doing so in a way that allows us to expand our UAS offerings," he said. "We see this as a big piece."

Wells said FLIR had already been developing tether technology, but the acquisition will help it accelerate its efforts.

"They had some really innovative technology as well as some concepts that we'll be using to augment and enhance the existing capabilities," he said.

By Justin Doubleday
October 1, 2019 at 5:02 PM

The newly branded Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency has officially taken on the background investigations mission with the start of fiscal year 2020.

The National Background Investigations Bureau completed its transfer from the Office of Personnel Management into DCSA, the Defense Department announced today. In April, President Trump directed the transfer of the background investigations mission from OPM to DOD. The process began in 2017, when the growing backlog of background investigations at NBIB spurred lawmakers to allow the Pentagon to take over responsibility for military-specific investigations.

The merger of NBIB makes DCSA the largest security organization in the federal government. The agency, previously known as the Defense Security Service, has four "mission centers" focused on counterintelligence, critical technology protection, personnel vetting as well as training, education and certification, according to DCSA's website.

''Merging the components into one organization will allow us to execute our two core missions: personnel vetting and critical technology protection, underpinned by counterintelligence and training,'' DCSA Acting Director Charles Phalen said in a statement released today.

The background investigation inventory has dipped dramatically over the past year, from a peak of 725,000 cases in April 2018, to 324,000 as of September, according to data posted on the website. The government's goal is a "steady-state inventory target" of 200,000 cases.

DOD officials also want to shift more government employees into a "continuous evaluation" system that they say will allow them to immediately red flag a potential issue with a cleared employee and automate more record checks. As of the third quarter of FY-20, just shy of 1.4 million people were enrolled in DOD's continuous evaluation program, according to

By Justin Katz
October 1, 2019 at 3:40 PM

The Navy's No. 2 civilian today defended the decision to keep two general officers "multihatted" as deputy chief information officers despite a critical report published earlier this year that said doing so leads to fighting over budget dollars.

"That's a problem here with everything," Navy Under Secretary Thomas Modly told reporters at the Pentagon today, referring to in-fighting for funding.

"That's not just in information management, it's a problem in education. . . . It's a problem in how we manage our supply chain, but you have to make earnest attempts to try and get control over that," he continued.

The remarks were in response to questions about criticism from the Navy's 2019 cybersecurity readiness review, which notes the two deputy Navy chief information officers are both "multihatted."

"This creates inconsistent communication from the top down and inconsistent messaging laterally," the report said.

"Commands and personnel remain protective of their traditional structure and budgetary status quo," the report continued.

Modly said the report is "absolutely correct" about budgetary in-fighting but contended standing up new senior executives -- a dedicated chief information officer and a chief learning officer -- will help develop a "level of visibility" necessary to mitigate those issues.

The Navy's cyber report also criticized Modly for initially assuming the responsibilities of CIO in addition to his other roles, under secretary and chief management officer. The service last week announced Aaron Weis will serve as the Navy’s CIO.

"I'll take responsibility for that but when I came here it was non-hatted. I mean there was no one in the CIO job when I got here," the under secretary said.

Asked about the report's comments on the general officers, Modly said he hopes the new structural changes associated with having a dedicated CIO will create "some unity of command with respect" to how the Navy develops and prioritizes its budget.

By Sara Sirota
October 1, 2019 at 3:05 PM

The Air Force has awarded Raytheon a $200 million contract for Small Diameter Bomb II engineering and manufacturing development integration, production, sustainment and testing.

The indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity life-cycle support contract covers obsolescence analysis and management, logistics support, training, upgrades and software updates too.

A Defense Department announcement states the Air Force will also use the agreement to acquire "studies and analysis related to current and future expansion of system performance, simulations, modeling, test hardware, technical support, aircraft integration activities, and procurement of all associated test hardware to support the activities and repair of non-warranted assets."

Raytheon is expected to complete this work in Tucson, AZ before October 2024. The Air Force did not obligate any funds at the time of the award.

By Ashley Tressel
October 1, 2019 at 2:10 PM

General Dynamics Land Systems today announced it has submitted its proposal for the Army's Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle competition, almost a year after it debuted its offering in Washington.

Don Kotchman, GDLS' vice president and general manager for the U.S. market, said in a released statement, "General Dynamics Land Systems submitted our OMFV proposal and bid sample to the U.S. Army on 27 September. GD's bid sample was purpose-built to address the desired system lethality, survivability and mobility as substantiation of our response to the Army’s request for proposal."

Also competing for the major modernization program to replace the Bradley Fighting Vehicle is a Raytheon-Rheinmetall-Pratt & Miller team with the Lynx platform. The team has not issued a press release announcing a formal submission, but Rheinmetall announced in August Pratt & Miller's involvement in the joint effort.

The two are the only contractors left in the running after BAE Systems declined to participate this spring.

By John Liang
October 1, 2019 at 1:52 PM

This Tuesday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Navy reorganizing its acquisition office, Trident missiles, hypersonic weapons, the Air Force's Next-Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared program and more.

The Navy is reorganizing its acquisition office:

Geurts: Multiple structural changes to Navy acquisition offices to take effect today

The Navy is restructuring several high-level acquisition directorates alongside the recent establishment of a new senior civilian position for sustainment, according to a memo obtained by Inside Defense.

Document: Navy memo on acquisition office reorganization

The end of the fiscal year yesterday saw the Defense Department issue a slew of contract awards, including ones for submarine-launched Trident missiles and Hypersonic weapons:

Navy awards Lockheed Martin contract modification worth up to $1.2 billion for Trident missile

The Navy yesterday announced a contract modification to Lockheed Martin worth up to $1.2 billion for production of submarine-launched ballistic missiles for the United States and United Kingdom.

Army taps General Atomics to support flight tests of Long Range Hypersonic Weapon

In the latest move to field an industry team to support efforts to rapidly prototype a ground-launched hypersonic glide vehicle, the Army has selected General Atomics to support flight test execution of the Long Range Hypersonic Weapon.

Inside Defense interviewed the Navy's new chief information officer this week:

New Navy CIO says industry must help Pentagon police subcontractors' cybersecurity

The Navy's new chief information officer says one of his top priorities will be ensuring prime contractors help the Pentagon hold subcontractors accountable for cybersecurity.

More cyber news from our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity:

SBA warns of contractor shortages from Pentagon's cyber certification plan

The Small Business Administration's advocacy office is urging the Defense Department to subject its draft cybersecurity certification program to a formal notice-and-comment rulemaking process, warning the complexity and costs of the plan could undermine the Pentagon's contracting goals.

The Air Force's Next-Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared program will be getting more money:

Lawmakers approve $160M Next-Gen OPIR reprogramming request

Congress has approved the Air Force's request to reprogram $160 million to support the Next-Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared program's accelerated schedule, which aims to deliver an initial satellite by 2025.

By Jaspreet Gill
October 1, 2019 at 1:35 PM

The Army is starting the fourth iteration of its small business-oriented technology competition, called the Expeditionary Technology Search, concentrating on Army modernization.

The winners of "xTechSearch 4.0" will be featured at next year's Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting in Washington from Oct. 12 to Oct. 14, 2020, to "highlight opportunities for small businesses to collaborate with the Army to tackle the most critical Army modernization challenges," according to a notice posted today to Federal Business Opportunities.

Small businesses looking to participate in xTechSearch 4.0 must submit white papers by Nov. 11, 2019, outlining their technology and potential impact on the service, for review by the Army Science and Technology directorate.

As many as 48 competitors will receive a prize of $5,000 and an invitation to "Phase II: xTechSearch Technology Pitches," where competitors will present their ideas to a panel of Army subject matter experts across the country, the notice says.

The xTechSearch "seeks novel, disruptive concepts and technologies to support the top Army modernization priorities, Army medical technologies, military engineering technologies, as well as other critical technology focus areas within the Army research and technology portfolio that can provide technology overwatch or enable cost savings throughout the Army systems’ life cycle."

The Army launched xTechSearch 3.0 in May and is planning to showcase those winners at the AUSA Global Force Meeting in Huntsville, AL, next March.

Finalists from xTechSearch 2.0 are expected to demonstrate their projects at this year’s AUSA Annual Meeting, from Oct. 14 to Oct. 15, 2019.