Synopsis:A. EVENT: International Special Operations Forces (ISOF) Range 2023, 28-29 March 2023 at the Nevada Test and Training Range (NTTR), NV1. This Request for Information (RFI) is NOT a solicitation for proposals, proposal abstracts, or quotations. The purpose of this RFI is to invite technology demonstration candidates from private industry, government Research and Development (R&D) organizations/labs, academia, and individuals (hereinafter “respondents”) to apply with a nomination packet (hereinafter “packet[s]”) addressing innovative lethality technologies to exhibit at ISOF Range 2023. U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) will provide Special Operations Forces (SOF) users, SOF component combat developers, government technical engineers, contracting officers, and the USSOCOM program management office; in addition to, international SOF units, federal law enforcement special units, inter-agency special units, federal RDT&E agencies, and guests from the Army, Navy, Air Force,
and Marine Corps, and Coast Guard combat development offices (hereinafter “attendees”) as the audience for ISOF Range 2023. The attendees will use ISOF Range 2023 to conduct “hands-on” market research of technology to address lethality gaps and inform future requirements. Reciprocally, the attendees will provide selected respondents with written feedback on their demonstrated technologies. For the ISOF Range 2023 event, quads will be submitted via email to email@example.com
(see section C).2. Themes for ISOF Range 2023: • Weapons: o Thermal / IR mitigation weapons/suppressor coatings/attachments/covers etc. o Machine Guns: flash / ground disturbance elimination devices,.338 machine gun suppressors,.338 machine gun mounts / tripods, tracer solutions o Rifles: Extreme Long Range, suppressed, magazine-fed rifle, capable of 1MOA with engagement ranges of 2500+M o Maintenance: Polymers, coatings / metallurgy to increase lifecycle and reduce malfunctions of existing and new systems o Modular lightweight RWS for employment on LTATVs and NSCVs (must be roll-on roll-off without the need for major vehicle ECPs) • Visual Augmentation Systems: Technologies that currently are or could be incorporated into a packaged size and weight fit for helmet-mounted, weapon-mounted, or handheld limits. The VAS programs are interested in technologies associated with the following spectrums: visible, near infrared (NIR), short-wave infrared (SWIR), mid-wave infrared (MWIR), and long-wave infrared (LWIR). • Demolitions/Breaching: Small arms breaching, stand-off breaching, initiators and firing devices, including remote. • Ammunition: Alternate material cartridge cases for small arms (primarily in 6.5mm Creedmoor and .338 Norma Magnum), signature on target projectiles and high velocity cartridges. • Shoulder Launched Munitions: Single Shot or re-loadable systems for various terminal effects focusing on reduced overall system weight. • Precision Strike Systems: Releasable energetic payloads systems for delivery by autonomous ground or air mobility systems. • Other Relevant Disruptive Technologies (whether directly or indirectly “lethality” oriented): This is an opportunity for respondents to capitalize on the all-inclusive SOF audience by displaying interesting and emerging technologies that support USSOCOM’s ability to “Build a More Lethal Force.”B. DETAILS:1. Event: • The range event will consist of an exhibitor range to display live fire technologies and an exhibitor alley to display non-live fire and potentially lower “Technology Readiness Level” demonstrations and/or briefings.2. Tentative schedule for ISOF Range 2023: • 28 March 2023 (Tuesday): • Morning: Respondents show and set-up • Afternoon: Suppressor and laser-only open shoot • Evening: Night open shoot, includes lasers • 29 March 2023 (Wednesday): • Morning: Open shoot • Afternoon: Open shoot, breaching, and shoulder-launched munitions3. Technology Readiness Level (TRL): Technology submissions for “Weapons, Visual Augmentation Systems, Demolitions/Breaching, Ammunition, Shoulder Launched Munitions, and Precision Strike Systems” should be TRL 7 or higher. Technology submissions for “Other Relevant Disruptive Technologies” can be at a lower TRL level.4. Notification Dates: • 28 October 2022: Respondents will receive an invitation to attend, notification of not-attending, or notification of being placed on a stand-by list. • 3 February 2023: Respondents who were placed on “stand-by” will be given final notification on attending or not-attending. No more invitations will go out after this date. • Potentially immediately: If a respondent has a compelling reason for an early decision, e.g., import lead times or an exceptionally compelling technology, then an immediate invitation to attend may be rendered.5. Event Post-Notification Coordination: USSOCOM has entered into an agreement with Phoenix Defence, which will be organizing respondents’ participation in ISOF Range 2023. If a respondent receives an invitation from USSOCOM to attend, then that “respondent” becomes an “exhibitor” and coordinating instructions with Phoenix Defence will be included and the exhibitor will conduct all future correspondence, coordination, and information submissions, to include shipping, with Phoenix Defence under their terms and conditions which includes a fee for attendance.6. Technology areas to explore during the event include the following:6.1. Weapons6.1.1. Rifle and Machine Gun Suppressors in the following calibers: 5.56mm, .300 BLK (Super/Subsonic), 7.62mm, 6.5 Creedmoor, and .338 Norma Magnum, MK-48 (USSOCOM intends to select high performing suppressors from the ISOF Range 2023 for future testing/characterization at Crane later in FY23). Suppressors should prioritize reducing ground disturbance, flash, and sound.6.1.2. Flash Suppression / Flash Hider & other small arms signature reduction technologies.6.1.3. Weapon Stabilizing / Accuracy Systems – dismounted and handheld systems that help improve shooter accuracy.6.1.4. Novel materials/solutions to extend lifecycle of all weapon parts and predictive maintenance solutions to increase lifecycle and reduce malfunctions.6.1.5. New and novel weapon accessories that provide significant improvement to SOF operators from legacy weapon accessories to include recoil mitigation devices.6.1.6. Modular shot counter technologies that can be adapted to existing weapon systems.6.1.7. .338 Norma Magnum Machine Gun technologies.6.1.8. Thermal / IR mitigation for weapons and suppressors i.e., coatings, attachments, covers, etc.6.1.9. Extreme long-range, suppressed, magazine-fed rifles, capable of 1 MOA with max effective ranges up to 2500+M.6.2.Visual Augmentation Systems6.2.1. Low-light, reflective band sensor technologies with objective lens diameters in the range of 12mm to 80mm as a guideline. 6.2.2. Emissive band sensor technologies with objective lens diameters in the range of 12mm to 125mm as a guideline.6.2.3. Single-sensor technologies for imaging in both reflective and emissive bands.6.2.4. Novel sensor and imaging technologies.6.2.5. Passive range measurement technologies.6.2.6. Novel display technologies to reduce size and weight of VAS devices.6.2.7. Direct-view and Clip-on Machine Gun Optics6.2.8. Crew-Served - This area includes imagers as well as fire control systems. Clip-on imager capability for beyond 0-2000m target recognition for rapid-fire long-range machine guns including Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs), Advanced Lightweight Grenade Launchers (ALGL’s), Grenade Machine Guns (GMGs), intermediate caliber Lightweight Medium Machine Gun (LMMG), and other crew-served platforms. This category also includes fire control devices. Must be capable of target identification at ranges commensurate with the host weapon and must be compatible with material solutions being delivered to SOF Operators. The system-ofsystems approach integrates laser range-finding and augmented reality functions to achieve “smart-sensor” and “day-night” battlefield awareness objectives along with calculated aim points for timely and precise fire solutions to achieve higher probability of hit to the effective range of the weapon and munition in all day-night and extreme environmental conditions.6.2.9. Medium Range and Long Range VAS for weapon-mounted applications to increase lethality at night. There is interest in single sensor, multi-sensor, fused, or image intensified solutions.6.2.10. Laser markers used for target handoff and laser designators used for terminal guidance.6.2.11. Displays suitable for providing digital information to users wearing analog night vision goggles. There is interest in both external displays as well as displays capable of being incorporated into the housing of the night vision goggle in-line with the image intensifier.6.2.12. Next generation night vision goggle concepts. Integration of digital solutions to enhance analog imaging, integrated inertial sensors6.2.13. Small form factor, low-cost SWIR cameras for detection of common laser rangefinders and laser markers and designators.6.2.14. Handheld multi-sensor imaging and multi-domain sensing of the user’s environment with a focus on increasing lethality.6.3.Demolition/Breaching6.3.1. Remote Firing Devices. Improved secure Remote Firing Device (RFD) that is capable to function with all currently issued demolitions DODICs Devices. Should be capable of Line of Sight (LOS) and Non-Line of Sight (NLOS) Command Detonation for both Short Range (<200m) and Long Range. 6.3.2. Time Delay Firing Devices. Lightweight Time Delay Firing Device (TDFD) that has fixed time delay settings from 6sec to < 1hr and is compatible with all currently issued explosive devices. Removable battery is preferred. Device should be constructed to be non-attributable and/or consumed during use.6.3.3. Firing Device. Device should be single hand operated and non-electric initiating. Device should be dual initiating but also capable of single initiation. Device should be a mechanically functioning dual initiator that is single hand operated, safe, simple to use, light weight and interoperable with currently issued munitions. The mechanism shall be able to re-set/re-cocked one handed and be able to initiate dual or single systems. The design shall be streamlined to reduce snag protrusions.6.3.4. Stand Off Breaching. 40mm Low Velocity Grenade that provides the ability to breach multiple standard door types (wood, metal, in/out opening, etc.) from stand-off ranges. Grenades must be compatible with currently fielded M320 Low Velocity Grenade Launcher module (mounted and standalone).6.3.5. Door Breaching 9mm. A 9mm cartridge that can be utilized for breaching standard door configurations. Cartridge shall be compatible with existing 9mm handgun platforms.6.4.Ammunition6.4.1. Alternate Case Material Cartridges. Small arms cartridges utilizing alternative case materials (polymer, stainless steel, multi-piece hybrid cases, etc.), especially in 6.5mm Creedmoor and .338 Norma Magnum. Benefit of the alternate material configuration shall focus on improving performance over standard cartridges, such as increased velocity, improved muzzle velocity standard deviation, etc.6.4.2. Signature on Target. Small arms ammunition providing signature on target effects while matching ballistic trajectory of existing cartridges as closely as possible.6.4.3. High Velocity Assault Cartridges. 6.5mm Creedmoor cartridges with projectiles that will defeat current barriers at designated ranges. Cartridges shall have dispersion of 2850 feet per second (fps) when fired from a 14.5” barrel and a muzzle velocity standard deviation <13 fps.6.5.Shoulder Launched Munitions6.5.1. Shoulder Launched Munition systems (reloadable and/or one shot “disposable”) that can provide antistructural, anti-personnel, bunker / light-armor defeat and/or programmable air-burst counter-defilade capabilities configured with or without fire-from-enclosure (confined-space) firing capability with a focus on reduced overall system weight.6.6.Precision Strike Systems:6.6.1. Releasable energetic payloads systems for delivery by autonomous ground or air mobility systems. Payloads should be platform agnostic, self-contained to include all required subsystems for power and command of arm, release, and detonate functions independently from the delivery platform. Delivery vehicle must be able to release payload and return undamaged. Payload controller should have unique paring to the payload, with clear “safe” & “armed” indicators. Interface between payload and mobility device may incorporate familiar rails or other established mount standards.6.6.2. Exhibitor is expected to provide the mobility vehicle, the payload system, and operators for the demonstration. A test plan, communications plan, and safety data package will be required for review prior to the event.6.7.Other Relevant Disruptive Technologies (whether directly or indirectly “lethality” oriented)6.7.1. This is a “catch-all” category available to respondents whose technology would not otherwise fit into a category above but may be interesting to the attendees.6.7.2. For this category, the technology may be lower than TRL 7 and will be able to be displayed in the “exhibitor alley” if needed or applicable.6.7.3. Some examples for this category are medical equipment, targetry, personal protective equipment, shooting analytic tools, etc.7. Security/Classification Requirements: Respondents will only submit unclassified information in the Nomination Quads. Classified Nomination Quads will not be accepted.8. All respondents’ submission costs, travel costs, technology demonstrations, event attendance, and associated costs will be at the respondents’ expense. The event venue will only provide basic access to ranges and infrastructure to conduct the technology demonstrations. Invited respondents must be prepared to be self-sufficient during the execution of their technology demonstrations and not dependent on venue resources without prior coordination with Phoenix Defence.9. Time and space will be made available for respondents to conduct real-time modifications and updates to their technology demonstrations. Respondents are advised to bring all tools and equipment necessary to present/operate their technology at the event.10.Frequency Requirements: If your demonstration will be radiating on a given frequency or frequency band, you must annotate this on the Nomination Quad. If you are invited to attend, further instructions will be sent from Phoenix Defence.11.Other Special Requirements: DO NOT SUBMIT PROPOSALS. SUBMIT NOMINATION PACKETS ONLY. NOMINATION PACKETS FOR THIS RFI WILL ONLY BE ACCEPTED UNTIL THE FINAL CLOSING DATE OF 25 January 2023, 1700 EST. No contracts will be awarded based solely on this announcement or any subsequent supplemental RFI announcements. There is no intention on the part of USSOCOM to purchase or procure equipment based solely on participation in the event.C. SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS:1. Respondents will apply to exhibit their technology by completing a nomination packet, which consists of the Nomination Quad (Attachment 1) and, only if applicable, the Laser Information Worksheet (Attachment 2), then emailing the packet to firstname.lastname@example.org
by 7 October 2022 to be considered during the first and main tranche of voting or by 25 January 2023 for the second and final tranche of voting. The Nomination Quad should be converted into a .pdf and if a respondent has more than one technology to demonstrate, a single .pdf quad must be submitted for each piece of technology. Do not consolidate multiple Nomination Quads into one document. E.g., if a respondent has four technologies to submit, with two being weapons and two being or including emitters/lasers, then there should be four separate packets, each containing one .pdf Nomination Quad with two of the packets containing the associated Laser Information Worksheet. If at least one of a respondent’s technologies are invited to exhibit, every effort will be made to allow the non-selected technologies at the event to maximize the respondent’s resource investment.2. Do not use previous ISOF Range nomination packets.3. If your technology is or has any type of laser/emitter (or you plan to use a laser of any kind to enable your technology demonstration), it must be declared, have a Laser Information Worksheet (Attachment 2), and subsequently be approved to energize on the range. To assist filling out the Laser Information Worksheet, a copy of MIL-STD-1425A “Safety Design Requirements for Military Lasers” can be found at https://isofrange.phoenixdefence.com
in the nomination packet section. If your laser/emitter gets approved to energize at the range, you will further be required to submit an FDA Compliance Form, which will be sent by Phoenix Defence. • This includes all lasers, regardless of FDA or IEC hazard classification (e.g. Classes I, 1, 1M, II, IIa, 2, 2M, IIIa, 3R, IIIb, 3B, IV, or 4) • This includes a laser that is described as “eye-safe” • This includes a laser that you do not plan to energize during your demonstration (we still need to know it is there) • This includes a laser that is available commercially4. A complete nomination packet consists of: • Completed Nomination Quad (Attachment 1), in .pdf format, for each technology to be demonstrated; note, this will be the only document needed in the packet unless a laser/emitter is present • Completed Laser Information Worksheet (Attachment 2), only if a laser/emitter will be present at the rangeD. This event is advertised in several locations but the process for submission remains the same. Do not apply multiple times with the same technology. All avenues lead to one submission database managed by the PM-SOF Lethality contracting team.E. Safety Requirements: The ISOF Range will be conducted, managed, and controlled in accordance with the MilitaryStandard 882E, “Standard Practice: System Safety.” All respondents are expected to conduct themselves in a safe manner on the range and follow all instructions from the Range Safety Officers (RSOs). Failure to follow safety protocols or obey the RSOs may result in being removed from the range. If a respondent is invited to participate in the range with a unique or unfamiliar technology, then a follow-on Deliberate Risk Assessment Worksheet (Department of Defense Form 2977) will be requested to assess and mitigate risk. All respondents are suggested to review Military Standard 882E before attending the range. For your convenience, a copy of MIL-STD 882E is posted at https://isofrange.phoenixdefence.com
in the nomination packet section. Respondents wishing to conduct demonstrations of a kinetic or energetic nature are responsible for ammunition and/or explosives shipments to include an Interim Hazard Classification (IHC) or Final Hazard Classification (FHC) and coordination for receipt and storage with Phoenix Defence.F. BASIS FOR SELECTION TO PARTICIPATE: Selection of respondents to participate shall be based on the extent to which the proposed technology to be demonstrated addresses lethality gaps and/or informs future lethality requirements as evaluated by the USSOCOM component lethality subject matter experts (SMEs).G. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION:1. All proprietary information contained in the submission and technology experimentation shall be appropriately marked. All efforts shall be made to protect proprietary information that is clearly marked. Lessons learned by USSOCOM from these demonstrations may be broadly disseminated, but only within the Government. If selected for participation in the event, respondents may be requested to provide additional information that will be used in preparation for the demonstration.2. The respondent’s attention is directed to the fact that Federally Funded Research and Development Centers (FFRDCs) and Government Support Contractor (GSC) personnel will provide support during the review of nomination packets. The FFRDC and GSC personnel will have access to respondent nomination packets and will be utilized to objectively review a submission in a particular functional area and provide comments and recommendations to the Government’s decision makers. They will not establish final assessments of risk, rate, or rank of respondent nomination packets. All advisors have complied with Procurement Integrity Laws and have signed Non-Disclosure and Rules of Conduct/Conflict of Interest statements. The Government has taken into consideration requirements for avoiding conflicts of interest and ensure advisors comply with safeguarding source selection and proprietary data. Submission of nomination packets in response to the RFI constitutes approval to release the nomination packets to FFRDC and GSCs.3. Respondents are required to identify demonstrations that are subject to export controls since foreign participants will attend the event. Participants may include foreign government, military and industry or U.S. industry foreign national personnel. Respondents are ultimately responsible for complying with Export Control regulations for concepts, equipment, systems, or technology associated with the US Munitions List (USML) or Commerce Control List (CCL). Visit the U.S. Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls website (https://www.pmddtc.state.gov/ddtc_public)
for more information on USML International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and the U.S. Department of Commerce Bureau of Industry and Security website (https://www.bis.doc.gov
) for more information on CCL Export Administration Regulations (EAR). If necessary, USSOCOM event organizers will restrict access to export-controlled technology demonstrations.H. Per Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 52.215-3, Request for Information or Solicitation for Planning Purposes (Oct 1997):1. The Government does not intend to award a contract on the basis of this RFI notice or to otherwise pay for the information.2. Although the term “respondent” is used in this RFI, your responses will be treated as information only. It shall not be used as a proposal.3. In accordance with FAR 15.209(c), the purpose of this RFI is to solicit technology demonstration candidates from private industry, government Research and Development (R&D) organizations/labs, academia, and individuals to submit technology demonstration nomination quad charts addressing innovative lethality technologies.