Navy asks for industry ideas on submarine communicationS, sonar, and combat systems

WASHINGTON—U.S. Navy researchers are asking industry for new ideas in submarine technology—particularly involving submarine communication, anti-submarine warfare (ASW), submarine combat systems, and towed array sonar applications.

The Naval Sea Systems Command Advanced Development Office for Undersea Warfare in Washington issued a broad agency announcement (BAA 10-IWS5A-01) for basic and applied research in military signal processing and other embedded computing technologies in support of submarine combat systems; signal processing technologies in support of surface anti-submarine warfare systems; and undersea sensor handling and communication technologies.

The Navy is particularly interested in imaging, information management, torpedo detection, anti-torpedo defense, towed-array and hull-array sonar, and acoustic communications for attack submarine and missile submarine applications.

This BAA will be open for one year, closing on 7 June 2011. Navy researchers now are interested only in white papers, rather than in full proposals. The Navy plans to ask industry for proposals based on their white paper submissions.

Of the three primary areas of research interest, Navy experts want ideas from industry framed as white papers in several areas.

In signal processing technologies in support of submarine combat systems, Navy researchers want ideas from industry concerning imaging; passive signal processing; active signal processing; automation, contact management, contact followers, and target motion analysis; information management; and training.

In signal processing technologies in support of surface anti-submarine warfare, the Navy is interested in passive signal processing; active signal processing; torpedo detection, classification and localization; anti-torpedo defense; operator machine interface; training; and contact and data management.

In undersea sensor handling and communication technologies, Navy researchers are primarily interested in three areas.

First, researchers are interested in high-reliability acoustic sensors for towed-array sonar; improved submarine array and tow cable handling and stowage systems; twin line thin line (TLTL) array aperture generation technology; TLTL array line position measurement system; vector sensor and twin line towed array signal processing; low-cost, high-reliability heading, pitch, roll, pressure, temperature sensors; towed array shape estimation systems; low cost, low-noise tunable lasers; and low-cost, low noise, low- and mid-frequency vector sensors.

Second, researchers want industry ideas on acoustic sensing hull array sonar technology such as accelerometers, fiber optics, magnetics, and piezoelectric; connectionless telemetry techniques; and light-weight, high-reliability array cables, connectors, inboard and outboard electronics, hull penetrators array material, and tooling.

Third, researchers want ideas on acoustic communications—particularly two-way, radio-frequency buoys, encryption, information assurance, integration, and testing on surface ships and submarines, as well as wireless secure connections from off-board sources.

Navy officials expect to provide technical information by conducting industry days or by other means during the one-year open period of this BAA. This is expected in August 2010 for surface signal processing technologies, and November–December 2010 for submarine combat system technologies and undersea sensor technologies.

Companies interested should send white papers to the Navy's Tia Belton by e-mail at, or by post to Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command, ATTN: Code 02523, 1333 Isaac Hull Avenue, SE, Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC 20376.

For questions or concerns, contact Tia Belton by phone at 202-781-2265 or by e-mail at, or Cmdr. Alan Boyd by phone at 202-781-2580 or by e-mail at

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