Commander of Strategic Command General Sir Patrick Sanders delivering a speech at DSEI 2021.
Commander of Strategic Command General Sir Patrick Sanders delivering a speech at DSEI 2021.

Dear Readers,

The first major defence event in Europe, DSEI, has come and gone. After so long it was a real pleasure to attend every day. Although down in numbers, it was still well attended with every exhibitor I spoke to reporting good contacts made and good conversations. Exhibitors wanted to talk (even to the media), everyone seemed to be on time for meetings and there was plenty to catch the eye.

The working tone at the conference was established on the first morning by General Sir Patrick Sanders, Commander, UK Strategic Command, who delivered the keynote outlining the need for multi-domain integration on the first morning. He began with a warning that “the threat is not diminishing. The security outlook is more perilous that it was two years ago and we are now facing the twin spectre of emboldened jihadi terrorists and something not seen since the 1930s, a growing authoritarian zeitgeist that celebrates the suppression of political and individual freedom as a better way to govern.”

This is driving Great Power competition, which is fuelling risk-taking strategies. A recurring pattern of Great Power behaviour, he said, results in “interests expanding with power, the appetite grows with the eating and that risk taking accelerates the potential for escalation and miscalculation unless the behaviour is challenged and contained.”

Gen. Sanders said that two things linked the principle authoritarian regimes of Russia and China; to win without fighting, and the expansion of warfare into space and cyber in “a race for advantage in the defining technologies of the future.”

China’s push for technological advantage by 2025 includes artificial intelligence, advanced computing, quantum technologies, robotics, autonomous systems, commercial space technologies, additive manufacturing, the internet and new generations of technology such as 5G communications. “They look to dominate the system of systems confrontation creating new operating concepts, cross domain, autonomous swarms and precision attack to achieve persistent paralysis,” stated Gen. Sanders.

Bunker Briefing will now come out every Tuesday morning.

Thanks for reading,

Andrew Drwiega


DSEI: UK MINISTERS EMPHASISE EXTRA INVESTMENT AND SUSTAINED SUPPORT FOR INDUSTRY

Secretary of State for Defence, The Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP delivering his keynote speech at DSEI 2021.
Secretary of State for Defence, The Rt Hon Ben Wallace MP delivering his keynote speech at DSEI 2021.

DSEI was formally opened on Tuesday 14 September by the UK Minister for Defence Procurement, Jeremy Quinn, who said the UK’s armed forces were benefiting from an “investment boost” of £24 billion over the next four years for a total of £188 billion.

Quinn said that a £6.6 billion investment in research and development (R&D) would help pioneer defence developments “beyond next generation” technology. He said that he could announce three contracts to UK firms to trial and produce laser weapons. He re-emphasised the £2 billion investment already committed by the government into the development of the Future Combat Air System (FCAS).

On Thursday 16 September, the Secretary of State for Defence Ben Wallace said that adversaries were “not only challenging us in the traditional domains, but becoming masters of the sub-threshold. They are using ‘bots’ to disseminate information, hackers to break into global systems and UAVs to target their deep artillery fire. The threat has moved on, and we must move with it.”

Speaking to his government’s Defence and Security Industrial Strategy (DSIS), different to the Defence Command Paper, Wallace said that short termism was being replaced by long term strategic plans which would cut long term costs and increase ability to sustain conflict. The supply chain would have increased resilience and back recognised industrial capability with sustained support.

Wallace highlighted the government’s immanent Refresh National Shipbuilding Strategy, which he said would outline a 30-year pipeline of all government vessels procurements.

In terms of support to exporters, Wallace said that DSIS would make it easier to get export licenses by improving bottlenecks. He added that R&D decline was being reversed, and that UK intellectual property would be protected through a personal security assurance process.

Wallace added that international collaboration was also vital where at times the UK would lead and in others be a partner in a ‘meaningful’ supply chain. He said the partnership principle could be seen in terms of the UK’s role in producing the aft fuselage, horizontal and vertical tails built in Lancashire, with the RAF’s Typhoons in terms of partners in Europe and most recently over the collaboration over FCAS.

Finally, Wallace referenced the UK’s participation in the agreement between Australia, the UK and the United States (AUKUS) to build and deliver nuclear powered submarines to the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), a move that saw the Australian government stopping an agreement with the French Naval Group who were to supply 12 new attack submarines. He added that this project would further enhance the closeness of countries already committed to the Five Eyes (FVEY) – UK, USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand – although New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern was quick to assert that the nuclear submarines would not be allowed to operate in New Zealand’s territorial waters.


US MAJOR ARMS SALES (Defence Security Cooperation Agency – DSCA).

16 September – Saudi Arabia, Continuation of Maintenance Support Services (MSS).
The State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia of Continuation of Maintenance Support Services (MSS) and related equipment for an estimated cost of $500 million.


US GOVERNMENT CONTRACTS

Highlighting a selection of $100 million+ government awarded contracts awarded between 13-17 September.

17 September

US AIR FORCE
Boeing has been awarded a $1.6 billion IDIQ contract for missile guidance repair. This contract will repair the Minuteman III Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) missile guidance set. The Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center is the contracting activity.

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY

  • Quidel has been awarded a maximum $710 million IDIQ contract for over-the-counter antigen test kits..). (Awarded 14 Sept, 2021).
  • Orasure has been awarded a maximum $512 million IDIQ contract for over-the-counter antigen test kits. (Awarded 14 Sept, 2021)
  • Intrivo Holdings has been awarded a maximum $274 million IDIQ contract for over-the-counter antigen test kits. (Awarded 16 Sept, 2021)
  • Abbott has been awarded a maximum $119 million IDIQ contract for over-the-counter antigen test kits. (Awarded 14 Sept, 2021).
  • The Primary customer for all of the above awards is the Department of Health and Human Services. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support

US ARMY
Rolls-Royce Solutions America was awarded a $193 million contract for the acquisition of Namer Armored Personnel Carrier Power Packs Less Transmissions. Fiscal 2020 Foreign Military Sales (Israel) funds in the amount of $193, million were obligated at the time of the award. US Army Contracting Command is the contracting activity.

Walsh Federal was awarded a $131 million contract for to construct a hangar at Ellsworth Air Force Base. US Army Corps of Engineers is the contracting activity.

US NAVY
United Technologies, Pratt and Whitney Military Engines, is awarded a $77.9 million modification to an IDIQ contract that increases the contract ceiling to procure propulsion system spare parts, modules, support equipment/packaging handling shipping and transportation material, and depot lay-in material in support of the F-135 propulsion system requirements for the Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, Foreign Military Sales customers and non-Department of Defense participants. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.

16 September

US ARMY
Goodwill Industries was awarded a $242 million contract for support services for product modification, integration/kitting, procurement, warehousing and logistics management efforts for organisational clothing and individual equipment. US Army Contracting Command is the contracting activity.

Raytheon was awarded an $8.4 million contract for engineering services for the international partner variant of the Secure, Mobile, Anti-Jam, Reliable, Tactical-Terminal. Fiscal 2021 Foreign Military Sales (Canada and the Netherlands) funds in the amount of $8.4 million were obligated at the time of the award. US Army Contracting Command is the contracting activity.

US AIR FORCE
AMS Industries has been awarded a $210 million IDIQ contract for Airfield Damage Recovery (ADR) Fiber Reinforced Polymer (FRP) Kit capability. This contract provides updated capabilities to rapidly repair damaged airfield pavements using FRP panels. The 772nd Enterprise Sourcing Squadron is the contracting activity.

US NAVY
Whiting-Turner Contracting is awarded a $137 million task order under a multiple award construction contract for the replacement of several facilities damaged by earthquakes at Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake. The task order also contains 23 unexercised options and six planned modifications, which if exercised would increase cumulative task order value to $149 million. The Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command is the contracting activity.

Ultra Electronics Ocean Systems is awarded a $23.1 million modification contract to exercise options for the production of MK54 MOD 0 lightweight torpedo (LWT) array kits, associated production support material, spares, and engineering and hardware support services. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. government (12 percent): and the governments of the Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand, Spain, and Brazil (88 percent) under the foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. This modification is in support of the MK54 MOD 0 LWT program. Fiscal 2019 weapons procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $1.9 million (9 percent); fiscal 2021 weapons procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $800,009 (3 percent); and Foreign Military Sales (governments of the Netherlands, Belgium, New Zealand, Spain, and Brazil) funds in the amount of $20.3 million (88 percent) will be obligated at time of award. The Naval Sea Systems Command is the contracting activity.

15 September

US AIR FORCE
MITRE has been awarded a $474 million contract for services. This contract provides for support to the Air Force from MITRE as the administrator of the National Security Engineering Center federally-funded research and development center. Foreign Military Sales funds in the amount of $59,157 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center is the contracting activity.

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY
Dove Medical Supply has been awarded a maximum $400 million IDIQ contract for laboratory supplies and wares. Using customers are Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support.

US NAVY
Collins Aerospace is awarded a $294 million modification IDIQ contract that exercises an option for the procurement of 8,085 AN/ARC-210(v) radios for installation in over 400 strategic and tactical airborne, seaborne and land based (mobile and fixed) platforms for the Navy, Marine Corps, Army, Coast Guard, other government agencies, and Foreign Military Sales customers. The Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division is the contracting activity.

Lockheed Martin is awarded a $37.4 million modification IDIQ contract that increases the contract ceiling and adds scope to procure ancillary mission equipment in support of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Lot 15 production aircraft for the Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Foreign Military Sales customers, and non-U.S. Department of Defense participants. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.

MISSILE DEFENSE AGENCY
Raytheon Missiles and Defense is being awarded a contract modification under a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) case with the Japan Ministry of Defense (JMOD). The total value of this contract is $12.9 million. The contractor will evaluate hardware, inspect all material, repair minor discrepancies, and re-assemble and deliver a Standard Missile-3 Block IB Inert Operating Missile. The Missile Defense Agency is the contracting activity.

14 September

US ARMY
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals was awarded a $2.9 billion modification contract for antibody therapeutic doses. US Army Contracting Command is the contracting activity.

US AIR FORCE
Boeing has been awarded a $79.1 million IDIQ contract for B61-12 Tail Kit Assembly (TKA) surveillance and sustainment support. This contract provides the government with engineering services and technical expertise as needed across various disciplines for B61-12 TKA support. This contract includes Foreign Military Sales to NATO members that are to be determined. Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center is the contracting activity.

US NAVY
Northrop Grumman Systems is awarded a $12.8million modification contract that provides for the retrofit of Airborne Electronic Attack Weapons Replacement Assembly with 100 production kits required for the modification of ALQ-218 avionics in support of EA-18G upgrades, to include 64 kits for the Navy, and 36 kits for the government of Australia. Fiscal 2020 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $8.1 million; and Foreign Military Sales funds in the amount of $4.6 million will be obligated at the time of award. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.

13 September

US NAVY
Lockheed Martin is awarded a $2 billion contract definitisation that provides logistics support, to include ground maintenance activities, action request resolution, depot activities, automatic logistics information system operations and maintenance, reliability and maintainability, supply chain management, pilot training, maintainer training, and training system sustainment in support of delivered F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter air systems for the Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customers and non-U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) participants. Fiscal 2021 operation and maintenance (Air Force) funds in the amount of $822 million; fiscal 2021 operation and maintenance (Marine Corps) funds in the amount of $382 million; fiscal 2021 operation and maintenance (Navy) funds in the amount of $176 million; fiscal 2021 aircraft procurement (Air Force) funds in the amount of $2.2 million; fiscal 2021 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $1.2 million; FMS funds in the amount of $217 million; and non-U.S. DOD participant funds in the amount of $412 million will be obligated at time of award. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.

Lockheed Martin is awarded a not-to-exceed $411million IDIQ undefinitised contract that procures initial spares to include global spares packages, base spares packages, deployment spares packages, and afloat spares packages in support of F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter air vehicle delivery schedules for the Navy Marine Corps, Air Force, non-U.S. Department of Defense participants, and Foreign Military Sales customers. The Naval Air Systems Command is the contracting activity.

Science Applications International was awarded an $11.6 IDIQ contract for services, and firm-fixed-price provisions for spare parts in support of the MK 695 Torpedo System Test Set (TSTS). This contract combines purchases for the U.S. government (50 percent); and the government of the Netherlands (50 percent) under the Foreign Military Sales program. The services under this contract cover repair services, obsolescence management, prototype spares hardware and software fabrication and on-site technical assistance. Foreign Military Sales funds (NE-P-LHP) in the amount of $50,000 (50 percent); and fiscal 2021 weapons procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $50,000 (50 percent) will be obligated at time of award. The Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport is the contracting activity. (Awarded 10 Sept, 2021) 

DEFENSE INFORMATION SYSTEMS AGENCY
Lumen Technologies Government Solutions was awarded a IDIQ contract for the continued operations and maintenance support for dark fiber and commercial facilities in the continental US to support the Department of Defense. The Defense Information Technology Contracting Organisation is the contracting activity.

DEFENSE LOGISTICS AGENCY
Crowley Government Services has been awarded a maximum $192 million contract for services and related contractor-owned, contractor-operated fuel storage facilities with capabilities to receive, store, protect and ship aviation grade JP-5 turbine fuel and commercial grade Jet A-1 fuel. Using customers are Pacific Air Forces and Pacific Fleet. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Energy.

US ARMY
AECOM Technical Services; HDR GEI JV; Kleinfelder-Stantec USACE A Joint Venture; and Tetra Tech-Black & Veatch JV, will compete for each order of the $110 million contract for architect-engineer services. US Army Corps of Engineers is the contracting activity.


EVENT CONFIRMATION

AUSA ANNUAL MEETING AND EXPOSITION
11-13 October, Washington DC Convention Centre, USA


Andrew Drwiega
Andrew Drwiega, Editor-in-Chief, Armada International / Asian Military Review.

Keep safe and healthy everyone.

Andrew Drwiega

Editor-in-Chief
Armada International / Asian Military Review