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U.S. Army Hosts Third Network Integration Evaluation

April 16, 2012

By Katie Cain, System of Systems Integration (SoSI) Directorate

Warren, Mich. -- April 16, 2012 -- The U.S. Army will host a Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) Industry Observation Day on June 1, 2012 at Fort Bliss, Texas, and White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), NM, for interested industry partners who are participating in, or that wish to participate in the Army's NIE/Agile Process.

The goal of the event is to show industry partners the NIE environment and supporting infrastructure at Fort Bliss and WSMR. The observation day will take place during the NIE 12.2 capstone exercises, allowing industry attendees to see how the NIEs are executed in the actual operational environment, talk with Soldiers from the 2nd Brigade, 1st Armored Division -- the brigade executing the NIE -- and meet leadership involved in the Army's NIE/Agile Process.

The Army is fundamentally changing the way it develops, evaluates, tests, and delivers networked capability to its operating forces. The Agile Process aims to improve efficiency and effectiveness, while reducing the amount of time and resources necessary to respond to the rapid changes in Soldier requirements. These changes are associated with current operations, emergent information technology and modifications to the Army Force Structure. A key component of the Agile Process is the NIE, is a series of semi-annual, Soldier-driven evaluations designed to integrate and rapidly progress the Army's tactical network.

NIE 12.2 is the third iteration in this series, covering Phase 5 of the Agile Process, which brings selected technologies to an operational environment for integration following initial laboratory prove-outs, and puts them in the hands of Soldiers for evaluation during the NIE.

"This industry day is unique because it's the first time our small and large business partners have been invited to come out during an actual NIE event," said Col. Dan Hughes, director of the Army's System of Systems Integration Directorate. "A key part of the NIE process is bringing Soldiers, materiel developers and engineers together in a realistic operational environment to leverage industry innovation -- the industry day event will provide a first-hand look into this critical process."

NIE 12.2 will validate the connectivity, architecture and components of Capability Set 13, the first integrated group of networked technologies to be fielded to Army Brigade Combat Teams beginning in the fall of 2012, prior to their deployment to Afghanistan in 2013. The NIE Industry Observation Day will provide information on the Agile Process and include a comprehensive look at Army facilities supporting the current NIE integration process as well as a hands-on tour of a few key NIE operational locations on WSMR.

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