SOFIC NEWS: SOCOM to Host Virtual Event Series in Pursuit of New Tech
Special Operations Command’s special reconnaissance office is partnering with an innovation hub to host a series of virtual events aimed at identifying new technologies for commandos.
“A new way for industry to engage with us is a virtual assessment event series through SOFWERX that we kicked off just this month,” Program Executive Officer for Special Reconnaissance David Breede said May 17.
SOFWERX is an innovation hub that was stood up in 2017 under a partnership agreement with Special Operations Command to help solve challenging warfighter problems in collaboration with industry, academia and government stakeholders. It is based in Tampa, Florida, where SOCOM is also headquartered.
Breede's office recently published a “wide-reaching solicitation to address some of our technology interests across the special reconnaissance portfolio with the intent to execute a small number of prototype development efforts starting later this year,” Breede said during remarks at the National Defense Industrial Association’s annual Special Operations Forces Industry Conference, which is being held virtually due to health concerns surrounding COVID-19.
The initiative is currently in the midst of the “submission phase,” which will remain open to industry responses through July 8, he added.
There are eight capability focus areas for the initiative including: small satellite communications; advanced on-orbit processing architectures; collaborative autonomy for small unmanned aircraft systems; a low-cost simple RF collector; assessing cyber vulnerabilities; remote emplacement of sensors/tags; maritime tagging, tracking and locating; and biometrics.
PEO Special Reconnaissance will hold Q&A sessions on May 25 and 26 to discuss the event, Breede said.
“This will all lead to a downselect of projects that we will run through a virtual assessment event in late August to decide if we move forward with a contract for prototyping,” he added.