Today, the U.S. Army issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the Section 804 Middle Tier Acquisition (MTA) Rapid Prototyping phase of the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV). To maximize competition, the Army anticipates awarding up to two contracts for the MTA Rapid Prototyping phase at the end of the second quarter of Fiscal Year 2020.
The OMFV, the replacement for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, is a new combat vehicle that will be designed for and used by military forces to maneuver Soldiers in the future operating environment to a position of advantage, allowing Soldiers to engage in close combat and deliver decisive lethality during the execution of combined arms maneuver.
“The OMFV must exceed current capabilities while overmatching similar threat class systems,” said Brig. Gen. Ross Coffman, the director for the Next Generation Combat Vehicles (NGCV) Cross Functional Team (CFT). “It must be optimized for dense urban areas while also defeating pacing threats on rural terrain.”
The Army released an aggressive draft RFP earlier this year to seek more feedback from industry partners, and over the course of the last year the Army has frequently engaged with industry, academia and the science and technology community to ensure the requirements for OMFV are attainable.
“We took their feedback and the team worked diligently to ensure the triad of lethality, survivability and mobility is balanced,” said Coffman. “We have a set of attainable requirements, but it is paramount we maintain room for growth to incorporate new or improved capabilities in the future.”
Since its inception, the OMFV program has represented an innovative approach to Army acquisition by focusing on delivering an essentially new capability to the Armor Brigade Combat Teams (ABCTs) under a significantly reduced timeline compared to traditional acquisition efforts. OMFV will largely leverage existing materiel solutions with proven capabilities and new technologies to meet the requirements.
“This approach allowed the program to enter as a MTA Rapid Prototyping and alleviate a two to three year Technology Maturation and Risk Reduction phase,” said Maj. Gen. Brian Cummings, the program executive officer for Ground Combat Systems. “It is about being able to prototype and field required capabilities on an accelerated schedule to get capability into Soldiers’ hands quickly.”
In September 2018 the Army Acquisition Executive approved Section 804 MTA Rapid Prototyping for OMFV pre-Milestone C activities. This requires the fielding of a prototype that can be demonstrated in an operational environment within five years.
The OMFV MTA Rapid Prototyping effort will require delivery of 14 pre-production vehicles (each) for rigorous developmental and operational testing, and Soldier assessments, to measure prototype performance to requirements and gain user feedback.
Near the end of the MTA Rapid Prototyping phase, the Army will conduct a source selection evaluation to select a single best value solution for low rate initial production (LRIP). The targeted fielding for the OMFV First Unit Equipped is 2026.