US Army seeks information for ground-based sense and avoid support services

The US Department of Defense (DoD) has issued a Request For Information (RFI) to identify interested parties to undertake the operation of Ground Based Detect And Avoid (GBDAA) systems at various air bases. The roles include trainers, operators and maintenance technicians. The US Army will review white papers submitted in response to the RFI.

Additionally, the contractor shall provide courseware updates, training, and logistical support to include inventory control and spares management at the sites.  The contractor shall arrange for and provide training on the LSTAR(V)3 radar system maintenance with the original equipment manufacturer, SRC, Inc. for any new personnel who have not previously received training on this system.

According to the RFI: The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) establishes rules on aircraft flight operations to fly within the National Airspace System (NAS).  The FAA regulations require that the aircraft pilot must be able to “see and avoid” other aircraft to provide safe clearance distance with other traffic. Unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) cannot comply with these regulations without additional mitigations. To mitigate the risk of not being able to “see and avoid”, the Army Program Manager Unmanned Aircraft Systems (PM UAS) developed and fielded a Ground Based Sense and Avoid (GBSAA) system. The GBSAA system was developed by PM UAS and uses the Lightweight Surveillance and Target Acquisition Radar (LSTAR(V)3) system which provides safer airspace for aircraft and UAS to operate.  The Air National Guard has purchased the system for use as a Ground Based Detect And Avoid (GBDAA) system at various air bases.  GBSAA and GBDAA are fundamentally the same system with support requirements and CONOPS being the only differences.  PM UAS has the requirement to provide operations, training, maintenance, and logistics support for the GBSAA systems at select Army and Air Force Air National Guard (AF ANG) sites. The intent of PM UAS is to meet this requirement through contracted support.

Concepts provided should explain plans to provide GBSAA operators (GBO), System Maintenance Technicians (SMT), and Senior Trainers (ST) to support operations at GBSAA Sites.  Currently, there are 5 Army GBSAA sites – Ft. Hood, Texas; Ft. Riley, Kansas; Ft Campbell, KY; Ft Bragg, NC; and Ft Stewart, GA.  All 5 Army sites currently have 2 GBOs and 1 SMT.  Senior Trainers are located at Ft Hood and Ft Campbell.  Contract should also provide SMT support for the Air National Guard (ANG) GBDAA System located at Syracuse, NY.  Future support to be covered in this effort will include additional ANG sites at Fargo, ND; March ARB, CA; Davis-Monthan AFB, AZ; and Ellington AFB, TX.

The GBOs and STs serve as electronic visual observers and UAS crew members who are required to ensure safe operation of the UAS aircraft operation under GBSAA. The GBO/ST shall have similar duties and requirements as the ground observer in accordance with (IAW) Army Regulation (AR) 95-1. GBOs and STs are considered crew members as defined IAW the FAA Gray Eagle Certification of Waiver or Authorization (COA).

Funding is not available at this time.

Notice ID: W58RGZ20R0302

Published date: 13 July 2020

Response date: 28 July 2020

Point of contact: anthony.l.jones295@civ@mail.mil.

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