Marine Corps eyes Intel architecture to enhance digital communications of Ground Counter Fire Sensor System

QUANTICO, Va., 15 May 2011. The U.S. Marine Corps is reaching out to industry for help in converting the Ground Counter Fire Sensor System (GCFS) from the SPARC microprocessor architecture and Solaris software operating system to an Intel microprocessor-based computer system to enhance the GCFS's digital communications capability and its ability to network easily with other military fire-control systems. The Marine Corps Systems Command at Quantico Marine Base, Va., issued a sources-sought notice (M6785411I6014) Friday for the Ground Counter Fire Sensor System (GCFS) Digital Communications Capability program.

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QUANTICO, Va., 15 May 2011. The U.S. Marine Corps is reaching out to industry for help in converting the Ground Counter Fire Sensor System (GCFS) from the SPARC microprocessor architecture and Solaris software operating system to an Intel microprocessor-based computer system to enhance the GCFS's digital communications capability and its ability to network easily with other military fire-control systems.The Marine Corps Systems Command at Quantico Marine Base, Va., issued a sources-sought notice (M6785411I6014) Friday for the Ground Counter Fire Sensor System (GCFS) Digital Communications Capability program. Providing a digital communications capability to the GCFS will enable the system to connect to the Global Information Grid and exchange information with existing C4I systems such as the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data System (AFATDS), Marine Corps officials say.The stand-alone GCFS enables forward-deployed Marine Corps units to pinpoint the locations of enemy mortar and artillery firing positions based on the sound they make when firing mortars or artillery shells. Although the GCFS is designed as a stand-alone system, it also can work together with other fire-detection systems to pinpoint enemy fire and to help aim counter-battery fire.

The GCFS also can provide intelligence to deployed Marine Corps units by locating explosions of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and other kinds of roadside bombs or booby traps.

The GCFS Digital Communications Capability program seeks to enable the system to relay gathered data to the AFATDS by digital communications via the Joint Variable Message Format (JVMF). Today GCFS operators must pass system data to fire support and intelligence teams manually. Moving the system from a SPARC-Solaris architecture to an Intel architecture should ease integration of GCFS with a broad variety of other systems, Marine Corps officials say.

The Marine Corps procured the GCFS from SELEX Galileo, a Finmeccanica company in Basildon, England, in 2005, and the system became operational the following year. Companies chosen to migrate the system from SPARC-Solaris to an Intel architecture must obtain proprietary technical data from SELEX Galileo, Marine Corps officials point out.

Companies interested should respond to Marine Corps Systems Command no later than 15 June 2011, ATTN: FSS/Contracts (attn: L.D. Gillman), 2200 Lester St., Quantico, VA 22134. There is no guarantee of a contract award from this program as of yet.

For questions or concerns, contact Eileen Yorke Loba by phone at 703-432-3681, or by e-mail at eileen.loba@usmc.mil, or Larry Gillman by phone at 703-432-3677, or by e-mail at larry.gillman@usmc.mil. Also contact SELEX Galileo by phone at +44 (0) 1268 522822, by post at Sigma House, Christopher Martin Road, Basildon, Essex, SS14 3EL, or online at www.selexgalileo.com.

More information is online at https://www.fbo.gov/spg/DON/USMC/M67854/M6785411I6014/listing.html.

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