Organization: NAVSEA, PMS-430
Team Name: BFTT Electronic Warfare Trainer (BEWT) Team
Related Acquisition Topic(s): Acquisition Practices Streamlining, Contract Logistics Support (CLS), Evolutionary Acquisition, Integrated Product Teams (IPT), Integrated Product and Process Development (IPPD), Open Systems
The AN/USQ-T47(V), Battle Force Tactical Training (BFTT) Electronic Warfare Trainer (BEWT) is a training support device being incrementally developed and fielded by the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA), Performance Monitoring, Training, and Assessment Program Office, PMS430. BEWT development is accomplished under contract N00024-98-C-4031 awarded to Electronic Warfare Associates, Inc. (EWA) by NAVSEA. Under this contract, EWA is teamed with Research and Development Solutions, Inc. (RDSI) and supported by Azimuth, Inc. and NEW-BOLD Enterprises, Inc.
BEWT is a training support device intended to provide stimulation to onboard tactical Electronic Warfare (EW) systems giving afloat operators the ability to train for tactical operations using their organic equipment. BEWT provides the onboard training team the ability to exercise individual, team, combat team, and force level operational scenarios in support of the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) directives to move proficiency team training onto ships. BEWT provides shipboard proficiency training through stimulation of the onboard EW systems including the AN/SLQ-32A and the AN/ULQ-16, with design provisions for future systems such as the AN/WLR-1H(V)7.
BEWT uses an open system architecture incorporating both hardware and software open system standards and specifications. The system design supports capability enhancements by designing for modular hardware growth, portable and reusable software, and common expandable system interfaces. BEWT takes advantage of Commercial-off-the-Shelf (COTS) and Non-Developmental Items (NDI) to the maximum extent possible, consistent with achieving the performance requirements identified in the BEWT System Design Specification (SDS) and providing a system suitable for shipboard use.
The BEWT System will be developed in three increments. Increment 1, made up of two distinct variants, Increments 1.0 and 1.5, provides Engineering Development Models (EDMs) for Fleet evaluation that provide the capability to stimulate and simulate the AN/SLQ-32A and AN/ULQ-16 with realistic high fidelity emitter signals in both Independent and BFTT environments. Increment 1.0 design provided BFTT connectivity through the existing EW Local Area Network (LAN) Access Unit (EW LAU). Increment 1.5 communicates directly with the BFTT Synthetic Theater of War (STOW), eliminating the need for the EW LAU and corresponding matching emitter/platform database. Increment 2 will incorporate fleet feedback and technical enhancements in all areas, including integrated training capability utilizing AEGIS Combat Training System (ACTS) scenarios. Increment 3 will include provisions for BEWT interface with the WLR1-H(V)7 onboard Aircraft Carriers and provide additional functionality as specified by the Fleet.
SUMMARY OF ACHIEVEMENT:
The necessity for an innovative streamlined acquisition process utilized by the BEWT Team is the system's enormous popularity among the Fleet end-users. From the time of the shipboard installation of the first of twelve EDMs in September 1998 (three months after initiation of prime contract), BEWT has continued an aggressive incremental development schedule based on both technological advances and Fleet feedback. Parallel to this effort, the BEWT Team has maintained a full production and delivery schedule since August 1999, with the first production installation occurring 16 months after project initiation.
Strict adherence to traditional Mil Std 498 systems engineering processes since program inception contributed to a streamlined program acquisition path. Formalizing classic software and hardware development processes early resulted in clear design approaches, accurate market surveys, comprehensive testing, and quality controlled manufacturing. Timely communication with potential vendors resulted in fair pricing arrangements, even though the relatively low quantities of items purchased at any one time pale in comparison to most commercial ventures.
While these classical approaches led to a sound design and reliable product, two aspects of the BEWT Program have resulted in acquisition innovation. Initial teaming between the Fleet users, PMS430, and the EWA design team led to clear and relevant system requirements, resulting in proper design and COTS product selection. Through formal Integrated Product Team (IPT) meetings during program infancy the Fleet (as represented by senior enlisted EW specialists) was able to prioritize requirements and "talk to the designers". As each BEWT was delivered a three-tiered approach to periodic feedback was established. Separate questionnaires geared to the specific concerns of the tactical system operator, the training team leader, and the ship's command element are utilized, ensuring a well-balanced approach to needed improvements. Continued Fleet IPT meetings allow a team evaluation of all the suggested functionality improvements and enhancements received from the BEWT ships. Approved improvements are then made part of the incremental design process.
In addition to early teaming with the customer, BEWT acquisition innovation has been magnified by the early establishment of an Integrated Logistics Support (ILS) arm, the BEWT Fleet Support Office (BFSO). Through the BFSO proven commercial methods of customer support have flourished (BEWT.com website, toll-free customer hotline, 24 hour parts response in CONUS). By establishing the BFSO during the initial design stages of the program an infrastructure was fine-tuned before product deliveries began in earnest, minimizing any affect on production or development as the support arm grew in tasking. Classical aspects of ILS, such as training support, product qualification, configuration management, and technical manual development, were initiated long before traditional programs. As a result, ILS Certification was quickly attained without any adverse affect on the incremental design development schedule.