Air Force mulls 10-year half-billion-dollar program for anti-tamper technologies in hardware and software

Aug. 30, 2022
Project seeks to prevent reverse-engineering that may compromise critical program information leading to technology transfer, or system alteration.

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio – U.S. Air Force anti-tamper experts are asking industry to comment on a potential 10-year half-billion-dollar program to develop anti-tamper enabling technologies to protect U.S. weapons and military systems from attempts at reverse-engineering.

Officials of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center's Anti-Tamper Executive Agent Program Office (ATEA PO) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, released a draft request for proposal (AT2022DraftRFP) on Friday for the Anti-Tamper Executive Agent Program Office Multiple Award Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity Contract (MAC ID/IQ) project.

Air Force officials seek acquisition approval to issue a $499 million 10-year contract solicitation to procure anti-tamper product and technology development of anti-tamper solutions in secure processing; volume protection and sensors; and cryptographic protection.

The objective is to deter, prevent, delay, or respond to reverse-engineering attempts that may compromise critical program information, and prevent adversary countermeasure development, unintended technology transfer, or alteration of a system due to reverse-engineering.

Related: Air Force surveys industry for trusted computing, anti-tamper enabling technologies in embedded computing

The purpose is to obtain contractor support from large and small businesses in developing unique anti-tamper technologies, integrated anti-tamper technologies.

Secure processing will develop products and technologies to establish and maintain secure processing in single-board computers, custom microelectronics, commercial microelectronics, or modified commercial processing devices, and to extend security from one device to another related to physical hardware, intellectual property (IP), or software that manages security.

This will involve a secure physical boundary around critical components in products to prevent non-privileged users from gaining access to the critical components or information in line-replaceable units (LRUs) and shop-replaceable units (SRUs).

Related: Air Force launches anti-tamper program to protect weapons from theft and reverse engineering

Cryptographic protection, meanwhile, will protect critical information in products and technology through encrypted algorithms, cryptographic key-generating methods, key storage products, or ways to discourage an adversary from gaining access to key material.

Companies interested should email comments and questions no later than 9 Sept. 2022 to the Air Force's Sara Smith-Custer at [email protected], and Jonathan Mashburn at [email protected].

More information is online at

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