Navy chooses five companies to build shipboard networking equipment as part of CANES program

SAN DIEGO, 21 Aug. 2014. U.S. Navy communications experts are choosing five companies to share as much as $2.53 billion over the next eight years to manufacture advanced command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) shipboard networking equipment for the Navy's surface warship fleet, Navy officials announced Wednesday.

Navy chooses five companies to install shipboard networking equipment as part of CANES program
Navy chooses five companies to install shipboard networking equipment as part of CANES program
SAN DIEGO, 21 Aug. 2014. U.S. Navy communications experts are choosing five companies to share as much as $2.53 billion over the next eight years to manufacture advanced command, control, communications, computers, and intelligence (C4I) shipboard networking equipment for the Navy's surface warship fleet, Navy officials announced Wednesday.

Officials of the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) in San Diego, are awarding the contracts for the Consolidated Afloat Networks and Enterprise Services (CANES) program.

The Northrop Grumman Corp. Information Systems segment in San Diego was chosen in early 2012 to be the overall CANES shipboard electronics systems architect as part of a $37 million contract. With options, the CANES contract to Northrop Grumman could be worth as much as $638 million. The contractors named Wednesday will install CANES equipment aboard Navy warships.

The contractors who will manufacture CANES equipment and share as much as $2.53 million 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.

Related: Northrop Grumman wins $37 million to produce CANES for U.S. Navy

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 five companies Wednesday on behalf of the Navy's Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (PEO C4I).

"The operating systems that exist today on some of those legacy networks are not sustainable," explains Rear Adm. Christian Becker, the Navy's program executive officer for C4I. "CANES allows us to deploy current operating systems and then upgrade or stay current with future changes to those operating systems in a more cost effective and timely way."

Related: Navy CANES shipboard networking program moves forward, nears downselect to one prime contractor

CANES represents a critical component of the Navy's modernization planning by upgrading cybersecurity, 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 five contractors named Wednesday 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 earlier this month aboard the guided missile destroyer USS Higgins (DDG 76). Full CANES deployment and operational capability is expected as early as mid-2015.

Related: Navy shipboard networking builds bridge to future CANES data network consolidation for surface warships

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 five contractors named Wednesday will do their work in North Charleston, S.C.; Taunton, Mass.; Virginia Beach, Va.; Madison, Ala.; and San Diego as delivery orders determine, and should be finished by August 2022.

For more information contact SPAWAR online at www.spawar.navy.mil, or the Navy's PEO C4I at www.public.navy.mil/spawar/PEOC4I.

More in Trusted Computing