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Added: Jan 11, 2012 11:10 amSynopsis: Request for Information (RFI) Cyberspace Science and Technology
This is a Request for Information (RFI) on cyberspace science and technology (S&T) research, operational concepts, and mission support innovations to support Air Force projected missions in the near-term (FY2012-15), mid-term (FY2016-20) and far-term (FY2021-25). NO FUNDS ARE AVAILABLE FOR ANY PROPOSAL OR INFORMATION SUBMISSION AND SUBMITTING INFORMATION DOES NOT BIND THE AIR FORCE FOR ANY FUTURE CONTRACTS/GRANTS RESULTING FROM THIS RFI.
2. Background and Requested Information
The Air Force is requesting information on revolutionary cyberspace science and technologies that address the challenge of future Air Force cyberspace needs in cyberspace exploitation, defense, and operations for potential inclusion in the Air Force Cyber Vision 2025 study. Cyber Vision 2025 is a study to create an integrated, Air Force-wide, near-, mid- and far-term S&T vision to advance revolutionary cyber capabilities to support core Air Force missions. Cyber Vision 2025 will identify state of the art S&T and best practices in government and the private sector. It will analyze current and forecasted capabilities, threats, vulnerabilities, and consequences across core AF missions to identify key S&T gaps and opportunities. It will articulate an AF near- (FY2012-15), mid- (FY2016-20) and far-term (FY2021-25) S&T vision to fill gaps, indicating where AF should lead (creating or inventing novel solutions for core AF missions), follow (by adopting, adapting, or augmenting others investments), or watch key technologies. In alignment with the national security cyber strategy, the study is intended to address cyber S&T across Air Force core missions (air, space, cyber, and Command and Control Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C2ISR)) including DOTMLPF (Doctrine, Organization, Training, Materiel, Leadership and Education, Personnel and Facilities) considerations, engaging with industry, academia, national laboratories, Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs), University Affiliated Research Centers (UARCs), and government to leverage capabilities and experience.
The Air Force seeks the assured cyber advantage across air, space, cyber, C2ISR and mission support where these key dimensions are defined as:
Assured - Ensured operations in congested, competitive, contested, and denied environments in spite of increased dependencies, vulnerabilities, and threats.
Cyber - its defense, exploitation, operation
Advantage - an immunity, resilience, speed, agility, and effectiveness edge over our adversaries to ensure operational dominance
Across - supremacy within and across missions
Air, space, cyber, C2ISR, mission support - we require full spectrum cyber solutions
The Air Force operates missions in and through cyberspace, a human-created domain that knows no geographic boundaries (in contrast to air, land, sea and space). Cyberspace capabilities encompass not only hardware, software, information, and services, but also individuals, organizations, and missions. Air Force cyber requirements encompass cyber exploitation, defense and operations as well as doctrine, workforce development (education and training), acquisition and support. Cyber vulnerabilities open the way for exploitation by a range of threats. Threats include but are not limited to external, internal, supply chain, and may employ a diversity of methods such as denial, deception or social engineering and may have objectives of theft, disruption, and even physical destruction. Operations must be assured by mitigating vulnerabilities that adversaries might exploit and developing strategies and technology that assure missions in contested cyber environments. Special attention must be paid to dependencies on critical infrastructure and interdependencies with the defense industrial base, commercial providers, academia, non-profits and federal laboratories. While the Air Force cyber vision will remain within Title 10 authorities for organizing, training and equipping, a collaborative approach and peer review across other services, agencies and federal departments and coalition partners will ensure appropriate coordination with relevant defense, homeland security, and intelligence authorities.
The Air Force is seeking information on revolutionary hardware and software cyber technology and systems as well as innovative Tactics, Techniques, and Procedures (TTP) that will support, augment and in some cases extend mission range and scope. In addition, the Air Force is interested in operational innovations that provide immediate and long-term applicable, cost-effective operational capability and technological superiority for Air Force operations. Also of interest are enabling mission support elements and supporting best practices that provide the foundation for cyber capabilities across the other domains.
Assured cyber advantage is critical in all domains in which the Air Force operates. The Air Force must maintain its dominance of air, space, cyber, and C2ISR fixed and expeditionary operations. All domains have unique challenges, but each requires cyber solutions, therefore, a portfolio of technologies is required to meet the wide spectrum of future Air Force requirements.
Space assets have not only enhanced our national security but have also fundamentally changed military operations. Space power is defined as the total strength of a nation's capabilities to conduct and influence activities to, in, through, and from space to achieve its objectives. Space power is integrated throughout joint operations as both an enabler and a force multiplier. The Air Force views cyber operations supporting, enabling or controlling space assets and missions as a key ingredient for achieving battlespace superiority.
Space operations are essential to space power, providing a uniquely persistent presence over key areas of the world through the effective employment of space capabilities. Space power provides the joint fight with permanently "forward-deployed" satellites and adds another dimension to the joint force's ability to posture quickly and achieve battlespace superiority. Space power bolsters US global presence because it is not limited by terrestrial anti-access concerns. Airmen exploit this global presence and produce force-multiplying capabilities like instant global communications, timely missile warning, near-persistent surveillance and reconnaissance, and precise positioning, navigation and timing (PNT).
In order to ensure continued dominance in this domain, continued investment into enabling cyberspace technologies is required. These include ground stations; telecommunications hardware, software and protocols; cyber S&T for rocket engines and satellites in space as well as satellite control and data processing centers on the ground. For example, intelligent space maneuver could provide extended life for assets in orbit, autonomous satellite command-and-control as well as establishing intelligent ground processing centers that would help address responsiveness, resiliency, and readiness requirements.
Techniques which will augment human performance to provide force-multiplication through cyberspace are sought. S&T for Integrated Full Spectrum Cyberspace Operations to develop and demonstrate trusted, validated, verified capabilities capable of delivering a full range of cyber effects and a means to measure and assess the effectiveness and degree of assurance of a delivered cyber effect prior to usage are of interest. Technology and techniques which will provide new opportunities for AF advantage in cyber operations and support are sought.
New modeling and simulation (M&S) approaches are critical to integrating cyber techniques into our military operations. M&S tools need to assess effectiveness of cyber capabilities and actions for operations, planning, acquisition, and testing. Planning tools, much like those available for kinetic weapons that exist in the Joint Munitions Effectiveness Manual (JMEM), are need for cyber. The Cyber JMEM needs to expand beyond its two current applications to address the wide range of cyber military activities. Also, the additional target attributes and data that could be exploited by cyber techniques are a necessary development. Finally, development of evaluation tools that can capture the effects of combined kinetic and non-kinetic operations are necessary. The scientific and technology community should support the advancement of the analytics for effective and efficient acquisition and use of future cyber capabilities.
The Air Force is interested in revolutionary cyberspace concepts and innovative solutions that can meet the challenging cyber needs of the Air Force. These solutions are sought for all mission areas including air, space, cyber, C2ISR, and mission support. Described technologies should also indicate the areas of improvement over current state of the art technologies in quantitative metrics including, but not limited to, efficiency, effectiveness, robustness, resiliency, size, cost and sustainability. The Air Force is interested in solutions not focused exclusively on commercial viability but rather game changing revolutionary advances. Innovative basic cyber science research is also of interest if there is concrete evidence of technical viability such as peer-reviewed publication, prototypes, or demonstrations as well as cross cutting applicability to two or more mission domains. The focus of the submissions should be on advanced technology solutions in the idea generation or early development stages.
The global scope of DoD and Air Force networks and systems presents adversaries with broad opportunities for exploitation and attack. U.S. adversaries may seek to exploit, disrupt, deny or degrade the networks and systems the Air Force depends upon 24/7 for global operations. The threats to cyberspace are presented from external threat actors, insiders, and via supply chain vulnerabilities. Of particular concern are the threat activities which result in the theft and exploitation of data, disruption or denial of access or service, and destructive activity that threatens to destroy or degrade networks or connected systems. While the threat to intellectual property is often less visible than the threat to the air, space, cyberspace, C2ISR and mission support areas, it may be the most pervasive threat to the Air Force today. As military strength ultimately depends on economic vitality, sustained intellectual property losses erode both U.S. military effectiveness and national competitiveness in the global economy.
Ultimately there are significant risks inherent in relying on cyberspace as the DoD and Air Force will continue to leverage cyberspace to execute its mission more effectively and efficiently. Adversaries will continually adjust their tools and tactics, making a perfect defense impossible. Thus the importance and urgency for an integrated, Air Force-wide, near-, mid-, and far-term science and technologies vision to advance revolutionary cyber capabilities to support core Air Force missions. RFI responses addressing cyber solutions in the air, space, cyberspace, C2ISR, mission support, threat analysis or projections, and revolutionary S&T areas should address adversary threats which may exploit, disrupt, deny or degrade Air Force data, networks, systems and mission in the near-, mid-, and far-term range. Innovative methods and insights into how to most effectively forecast and anticipate future threats are also welcome.
3. SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS AND FORMAT
All Proposers should review the NATIONAL INDUSTRIAL SECURITY PROGRAM OPERATING MANUAL, (NISPOM), dated February 28, 2006 as it provides baseline standards for the protection of classified information and prescribes the requirements concerning Contractor Developed Information under paragraph 4-105. Defense Security Service (DSS) Site for the NISPOM is: http://www.dss.mil/isp/fac_clear/download_nispom.html
Unclassified white papers/CDs must be mailed to the technical POC listed below. Proposers who intend to include classified information or data in their white paper submission or who are unsure about the appropriate classification of their white papers should contact the technical POC for guidance and direction in advance of preparation at 315-330-7420.
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Cyber RFI Quad Chart Template
Other (Draft RFPs/RFIs, Responses to Questions, etc..)
Cyber RFI Quad Chart Template
January 11, 2012
26 Electronic Parkway
Rome, New York 13441-4514
Lynn G. White,
Phone: (315) 330-4996
January 11, 2012
Feb 24, 2012 4:00 pm Eastern
Original Set Aside:
A -- Research & Development
541 -- Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services/541712 -- Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences (except Biotechnology)