Navy resolves CANES shipboard networking protest with selection of two more equipment vendors
SAN DIEGO, 9 Jan. 2015. U.S. Navy communications experts are expanding their stable of communications and computing contractors from five to seven for the Consolidated Afloat Networks and Enterprise Services (CANES) program after a contractor protest last September brought the multi-billion-dollar program to a temporary halt.
Officials of the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) in San Diego, announced two additional CANES contractors Thursday -- CGI Federal Inc. in Fairfax, Va., and DRS Laurel Technologies in Johnstown, Pa., to manufacture advanced command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) shipboard networking equipment for the Navy's surface warship fleet.
CGI Federal and DRS Laurel will share as much as $2.53 billion over the next eight years with the original five CANES shipboard networking contractors that were announced last August before CGI Federal and DRS Laurel filed protests with the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) in Washington on 2 Sept., which triggered a 100-day stop-work order for the CANES equipment contract. The GAO is the investigative arm of Congress.
The original five CANES contractors are: BAE Systems Technology Solutions & Services Inc. in Rockville, Md.; General Dynamics C4 Systems in Taunton Mass.; Global Technical Systems in Virginia Beach, Va.; Northrop Grumman Corp. in Herndon, Va.; and Serco Inc. in Reston, Va.
With the addition of CGI Federal and DRS Laurel, the CANES program resumes production. The seven contractors will manufacture CANES equipment for shipboard networking based on individual Navy orders. The CANES equipment manufacturing program has a maximum value of $2.53 billion.
The Northrop Grumman Corp. Information Systems segment in San Diego, chosen in early 2012 to be the overall CANES shipboard electronics systems architect as part of a $37 million contract, will install CANES equipment aboard surface warships.With options, the CANES contract to Northrop Grumman could be worth as much as $638 million.
CANES serves as the bridge to the future of Navy afloat networks, consolidating existing legacy and stand-alone networks, providing infrastructure for Tactical applications, systems, and services, Navy officials say. CANES will consolidate and modernize shipboard network systems to improve operational effectiveness and affordability across the fleet.
CANES delivers its capabilities within one system, bringing infrastructure that will enable timely and interoperable information exchange among tactical, support, and administrative users, applications, and computer systems.
SPAWAR awarded contracts to the seven CANES equipment manufacturers on behalf of the Navy's Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (PEO C4I).
CANES represents a critical component of the Navy's modernization planning by upgrading cyber security, command and control, communications, and intelligence systems afloat. The increased standardization will reduce the number of network variants by ship class across the fleet, SPAWAR officials say.
Competition will be continuous among the seven CANES equipment manufacturing contractors for the procurement of production and training units. Lessons learned from the first CANES hardware and software installations will help Navy experts upgrade later CANES equipment.
CANES operational testing began last August aboard the guided missile destroyer USS Higgins (DDG 76). Full CANES deployment and operational capability is expected as early as mid-2015.
Thus far CANES has been installed on nine destroyers, and is in progress on three aircraft carriers, one amphibious assault ship, eight destroyers, one landing dock ship, and one cruiser, Navy officials say. An additional 28 installations are planned over the next two years.
CANES ultimately will be deployed on 180 ships, submarines, and land sites by 2022. The seven CANES equipment manufacturing contractors will do their work in Johnstown, Pa.; Charleston, S.C.; North Charleston, S.C.; Taunton, Mass.; Virginia Beach, Va.; Madison, Ala.; and San Diego as delivery orders determine, and should be finished by January 2023.