Army asks industry for cable and connectors suitable to Mortar Fire Control System (MFCS)

WARREN, Mich., 11 Oct. 2012. U.S. Army artillery experts are testing the waters in commercial cabling and connectors industry to determine if off-the-shelf cable assemblies are available for the Army's Mortar Fire Control System (MFCS) that helps infantry increase the accuracy and rate of fire for standard mortar rounds.

The Army Contracting Command in Warren, Mich., issued a sources-sought notice (W56HZV-13-R-0024) Tuesday entitled Various MFCS Cable Assemblies. The notice is to conduct market research to determine if connector assemblies built by Federal Prison Industries (FPI) are high quality, less expensive, and be delivered more quickly in the private sector.

The notice is not a formal solicitation, Army officials say. Specifications for the MFCS cable assemblies the Army needs are online at https://www.fbo.gov/fedteds/W56HZV13R0024 . Companies must register with the government to gain access to details of Army specifications for MFCS cable assemblies.

The Mortar Fire Control System is designed to make mortars easier to fire and keep soldiers safe, and represents a revolutionary improvement in mortar fire-control capability by linking mortar crews with the digital battlefield, Army officials say.

MFCS a weapon pointing device, an inertial navigation and position system, and a digital communications capability embedded in the fire control computer.

The MFCS enables mortar crews to send and receive digital call for fire messages, determine the pointing and position of the weapon, and calculate ballistic solutions.

The system is comprised of ruggedized components suitable for use in combat, in all types of weather, and in military vehicles. MFCS components include pointing device; commander's interface; gunner's display; driver's display; GPS receiver; power distribution assembly; and cables.

The MFCS, which can receive a fire mission on the move, enables mortar crews to stop, fire, and move in less than one minute. Stand-alone mortars can stop, fire, and move only in eight to 12 minutes.

Companies interested should complete the Microsoft Word industry survey located online at https://acquisition.army.mil/asfi/attachment_viewer.cfm?Sol_Number=W56HZV-13-R-0024&Seq_Nbr=353019&FILE_NAME=Sources_Sought_Survey.doc&FILE_EXTENSION=doc. E-mail completed surveys to the Army's Rebecca Rogers at rebecca.rogers8.civ@mail.mil no later than 19 Oct. 2012.

For questions or concerns phone the Army's Tomothy O'Day at 586-282-7537. More information is online at https://www.fbo.gov/notices/4effd539e04b9fe97718f58dab8c257f.

For more information contact the Army Contracting Command www.army.mil/acc, or Federal Prison Industries (FPI) at www.unicor.gov.

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