Air Force surveys industry for unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) for Eglin test wing

January 16, 2013 - via Military and Aerospace Electronics

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla., 16 Jan. 2013. U.S. Air Force test experts are surveying industry for companies able to provide unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) and sensor payloads to help monitor and recover air-delivered test weapons and provide other support to the Air Force 96th Test Wing and its ocean test range near Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

The Air Force Test Center at Eglin Air Force Base issued a sources-sought notice last Friday (FA2823-13-C-SUMS) for the Small Unmanned Marine Vehicle Systems (SUMS) Services program to find companies able to provide small unmanned vehicles and support personnel, equipment, tools, and materials.

The unmanned marine vehicles will be for the 96th Test Wing to support test missions conducted over the water ranges of the Eglin complex. Officials are looking for companies able to provide equipment, operation, and maintenance of the unmanned systems at Eglin and at other locations.

Systems should be self-contained and portable for remote operations; deployable from the coastline or from a 40-foot work boat; have a range of 420 nautical miles; and be capable of 24/7 operations.

The Air Force needs two ground control stations (GCS) per mission; a primary and back-up vehicle for each mission -- each with autonomous way point navigation; support for line-of-sight and beyond-line-of-sight missions; and endurance of six to nine months on station at four hundred twenty nautical miles from the ground-control system.

The marine vehicle system should have interchangeable sensors for stabilized gimbal long-wave and short-wave infrared, electronic intelligence, RF, and acoustic sensor payloads for surveillance, tracking target, data and metadata to aid scoring and evaluation of air-to-ground weapon target impacts, and test bed for research, development, and test.

Air Force officials say they expect to award a marine vehicle support contract for January to December 2014, with as many as four one-year options.

Companies interested should e-mail name of the company, interest, a capabilities statement, business size, a company point of contact no later than 28 Jan. 2013 to the Air Force's Kristin Ashley Sapelak at For questions or concerns contact Sapelak by e-mail or by phone at 850-882-3349.

More information is online at

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Author:John Keller

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