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Objective Theater Support Vessel (OTSV)

In September 2004 a program decision was made to cease/rescind all ongoing Army Objective Theater Support Vessel (TSV) source selection activity. Consistent with a Memorandum of Intent signed by the Army, Navy and Marine Corps, the Army would work to integrate requirements and develop a Joint program, with Army representation. The lead responsibility for acquisition transitioned to the Navy.

Theater Support Vessel (TSV) Program

On 29 October 2002, the TSV ORD IPT met to review and discuss the comments on the TSV Operational Requirement Data (ORD) that generated from the worldwide staffing process. The IPT reviewed and either accepted, modified or rejected the comments. TRADOC set a suspense of 1 December to receive the TSV ORD. STRAP approval was expected on 18 November 2002.

In mid-2004 the Program Executive Office (PEO) Combat Support & Combat Service Support (CS&CSS) and the United States Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) issued a draft Request for Proposal for the procurement of Theater Support Vessels (TSV): one R&D funded vessel with incremental funding on a firm fixed price basis in FY 05 for delivery in FY 08. This contract was to contain fixed price with economic price adjustment options for the purchase of up to 15 additional procurement TSVs: 3 EA in FY 08, 4 EA in FY 09, 3 EA in FY 10, 3 EA in FY 11 and 2 EA in FY12, and may include additional quantities for other customer requirements.

A total of about 17 ships is what the Army is looking at if the program goes forward, at a cost of about $85 million apiece.

The TSV program was anticipated to consist of several separate procurements / leases. Each procurement / lease may be a separate class with unique or additional capabilities. As an example, the third procurement (several years into the future) may be significantly larger and faster and may incorporate self-defense features beyond the first procurement / lease (current program). Hull forms could potentially vary greatly between classes. Spiral development or upgrades within a class over the life of the class will be determined on a case by case basis. Some technologies, equipment and capabilities can be added to a class over its life easily and cost effectively and others cannot. It is doubtful that a particular class of TSV will change radically during its life. As an example it is not anticipated that the vessel's speed and payload capacity will double over its life.

The vessel must be built in the United States. The vessel characteristics include: interoperability, container handling (load/unload 20' ISO containers, 463L pallets and PLS flat racks), rolling stock cargo handling, shallow draft, sea keeping, intra-theater lift capability/operational range, self-deployment, port accessibility, vertical replenishment and an option for a helicopter deck. The contract will also require: Performance Based Logistics, and Command, Control, Communication, Computer, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR), and compliance with American Bureau of Shipbuilding (ABS) requirements.

Theater Support Vessel (TSV) CONOPS

Theater Support Vessel (TSV) is a high-speed, shallow draft vessel which utilizes the most advanced COTS technologies in a military unique platform. TSV is rapidly reconfigurable to support joint mission requirements. TSV provides Joint Combatant Commanders a multi-modal, multi-purpose platform. TSV delivers 16 C-17 equivalent loads. TSV delivers troops and equipment together; thereby reducing or eliminating reception and staging in theater of operations.

The Theater Support Vessel (TSV), the Army's future watercraft, is an essential element for the Future Forces. It will provide commanders high-speed, intra-theater sealift mobility that is not limited to major ports. The TSV will maximize rapid intra-theater sealift to provide the warfighter the capability to operationally move and maneuver combat ready forces and follow-on sustainment.

The TSV will, initially, augment and then replace selected legacy watercraft such as the LCU-2000 and several variants of Army floating craft that were conceptualized and built in the 1970s - 80s to support a forward deployed heavy force. The TSV will be optimized to support operational movement and maneuver of interim and objective forces while continuing to provide support to current heavy forces. The TSV will be a platform built using existing technologies that have been developed in the commercial market place. Military utility will be further enhanced by integrating existing commercial & military technologies to improve vessel productivity, survivability and supportability.

The Theater Support Vessel (TSV), the Army's future watercraft, is an essential element for the Future Forces. It will provide commanders high-speed, intra-theater sealift mobility that is not limited to major ports. The TSV will maximize rapid intra-theater sealift to provide the warfighter the capability to operationally move and maneuver combat ready forces and follow-on sustainment.

The Army intended to acquire the Objective Theater Support Vessel (OTSV), which is required for the intra-theater movement of troops and military equipment. Military equipment includes troops (passengers), rolling stock, containers and pallets, which are not on trailers. It will have the ability to operate out of minor ports, which are too small for large commercial cargo vessels and shall have its own organic cargo handling capability. The TSV must be able to self-deploy long distances without cargo and be built to commercial standards, supplemented as needed with military requirements, such as structural requirements beyond the minimal normally required for vehicle fast ferries.

Theater Support Vessel (TSV) Characteristics

The vessel characteristics include: interoperability, container handling (load/unload 20' ISO containers, 463L pallets and PLS flat racks), rolling stock cargo handling, shallow draft, sea keeping, intra-theater lift capability/operational range, self-deployment, port accessibility, the ability to pass through the Panama Canal, vertical replenishment and an option for a helicopter deck.

It appeared that the Draft Purchase Description as of June 18, 2003 intended to limit the responses from industry to milti-hull catamaran type vessels, based on the length requirement of 121 meters. The limitation of the vessel length to 121 meters was based on a 2002 "Worldwide Port Survey" in which 282 ports in the US Central Command and US Pacific Command areas were analyzed.

The TSV shall be capable of defending itself against a small boat(s) attack. The TSV shall also have the capability to detect by bearing missiles that are RF, IR or Laser guided. These capabilities will be accomplished through a series of crew served weapons/remotely controlled weapons and missile warning system(s). The SPS self-defense capability is limited to very close range and interaction weapons (small arms and .50 caliber machine gun). Additional detection and engagement range (detection at 10 miles, and engage at 2-4 miles) may be needed to protect the crew and 354 troops that will be on-board the TSV.

The TSV shall have a minimum of 1,870 square meters (threshold) of effective deck area for rolling stock. The objective requirement is 2,760 square meters. One requirement is to have 250 meters of 4.3 meter width. Another requirement is to "be able to be configured for at least 500 lane meters of at least 3.4 meter width". The vessel is not required to be configured for 250 meters of 4.3 meter width and 500 meters at 4.3 meters at the same time.

Rolling stock shall be able to be loaded via the stern and also on port and stbd sides of the vessel by ramp(s). Side loading and stern loading are not required simultaneously.

The TSV shall have a Threshold average transit speed of at least 36 knots for a round trip of 625 nm each way. The Objective is the same as threshold except, each leg length is 1,250 nm; Average speed is 50 knots. A vessel designed to meet the threshold requirements will require 30%-40% of the horsepower and fuel required to meet the objective requirement; and a completely different structural approach. The resulting initial investment and life-cycle cost of these vessels might differ by several orders of magnitude.

The vessel shall provide Level I Class 1 (Day and Night Instrument Meteorological Condition landing facilities with service and organizational level maintenance facilities for H-60A/K/L/M/R/S aircraft. A hangar and maintenance facility shall be provided for 2 U.S. Army H-60 helicopters. The flight deck shall be operational with two hangared aircraft. In addition command and control facilities, aircraft guidance system, weather instrumentation, and safety systems required for flight operations shall be provided. The ship's superstructure shall be forward and above the flight deck. Only one landing spot is required, and all VERTREP/External Lift operations will be done on the flight deck. In addition the vessel shall be able to conduct Level I Class 2A (Day and Night Instrument Meteorological Conditions with landing facilities with limited service, but without maintenance facilities) for H-1, H-3, and H-46 helicopters and Level I Class 4 (Day and Night IMC (Instrument Meteorological Conditions) Vertical Replenishment/External Lift - Hover in Excess of 5 Feet) for all other helicopters.

The TSV Performance Based Logistics (PBL) strategy will include an ownership cost reduction strategy over the lifecycle of the vessel. The offeror will be required to develop a Total Ownership Cost Reduction (TOCR) plan that will be used to identify and track cost reduction initiatives along with a Pre-Planned Product Improvement (P3I) Plan that utilizes P3I to identify future funding strategies for planned improvements that will reduce ownership costs and improve vessel performance and capability.

The offeror will be required to provide a PBL Strategy that supports the government's PBL Management Plan. The PBL Strategy will describe how the offeror will achieve the desired Mission Capability of 90% threshold with a 100% objective. The offeror is also being asked to provide a 24 month 100% Contractor Logistics Support (CLS) Plan and cost. The intent of having CLS is to provide a viable alternative for providing logistics support over the designated period if needed.

The government will be the Product Support Integrator (PSI) and lead the PBL Integrated Product Team (IPT) which includes both government and contractor members. The PBL IPT will be formed after contract award to guide PBL development and implementation for the first TSV.

The TSV will possess C4ISR capabilities commensurate with the expected mission of a craft of this class. The TSV would be fitted with a high-speed tactical network and tactical computing environment capable of meeting all military and civil, secure and non-secure C4ISR requirements necessary for the conduct of TSV operations. The high-speed tactical network will encompass both classified an unclassified data segments, thus minimizing violation of connected systems. As the TSV is by definition requiring flexibility of different areas of operation around the world with differing tactical characteristics, the C4ISR will possess the capability to support pre-planned product improvements, technical refresh of technology, and integration of specialized sensors and other tactical capability with minimal impact to the installed tactical computing environment.

The C4ISR subsystem will have the capability to utilize data directly from ship's organic sensors, including the integrated bridge system, to create a tactical picture of the surrounding environment at and above the surface of the water. The C4ISR subsystem will have a command and control capability to support mission planning, provide situational awareness, and support monitoring of connected subsystems.

A two-phased approach is planned for the acquisition of the C4ISR portion of the TSV program. The Army will use state of the art, commercial and military technologies that are both proven and mature as a basis for the design. The system's architecture will be an open design thereby allowing changes as new technology becomes available. The design must be interoperable, that is the ability to communicate reliably and effectively by secure and unsecured data and voice with higher, lower and adjacent units in a joint environment. The C4ISR System-of-Systems architecture will integrate both Government Furnished Equipment (GFE) and Contractor Furnished Equipment (CFE).

PHASE 1. The initial CFE will be the Communications, Electronics, and Navigation (CEN) suite that is commercial based and used by the maritime industry. The CEN will be part of the vessel contract and should be included in the vessel price. The CEN suite will be required to integrate certain military C4ISR capabilities as listed in the SOW. In addition, the government plans to award a separate cost type contract for the balance of the Phase 1 effort. The government will provide to the TSV shipbuilder the base C4ISR Operational Architecture (i.e. Operational View, Technical View, C4ISR Block Diagrams for the Command Information Center, and Tactical Radio Room (as templates)) and a Work Breakdown Structure for the first through third levels. An initial list of GFE to be integrated into the C4ISR architecture will also be provided to the contractor. During this phase the vessel contractor will be responsible to conduct the C4ISR Design Review. This review will include the validation of block diagrams, correcting deficiencies and/or interface issues, conducting trade-off analyses, identifying material solutions, and insuring the final system design meets the requirements established by the C4ISR IPT. At the completion of the Design Review, the contractor will deliver the necessary documentation and proceed to Phase 2.

PHASE 2. Under this phase, the contractor will be required to install all the systems within the C4ISR architecture framework onto the vessel. Upon completion of the installation of hardware (GFE and CFE) the contractor will conduct testing to verify successful system level performance.

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