The U.S. Air Force’s Space and Missile Systems Center (SMC) released a request for information (RFI) Aug. 20, for parties interested in the future re-compete of the Space Enterprise Consortium (SpEC) Other Transaction Authority (OTA) agreement.
The SpEC OTA agreement was awarded in November of 2017 as a method to allow for the flexible and rapid execution of prototyping for a variety of Department of Defense space programs. One of the principal objectives for SpEC was to leverage the innovation of a broad range of traditional and non-traditional space defense contractors and universities. In less than two years, the consortium rapidly expanded to include 325 members, 78 percent of which are non-traditional defense contractors.
At the time of initial award, SpEC had an agreement ceiling of $100 million, with an award period of five years. Due to SpEC’s overwhelming success, Air Force leadership approved a ceiling increase to $500 million in April 2018. Since inception, SpEC has supported a broad spectrum of Air Force, Army, Navy and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) customers by awarding 54 prototypes with a combined value of over $300 million. Current projections forecast SpEC agreements will soon exceed the $500 million ceiling. With the rapid success and growth of SpEC, the Air Force is now developing a strategy to expedite a re-compete of the consortium OTA to manage this increased scope while continuing to leverage the current SpEC contract vehicle to satisfy DoD customer demand.
“We are thrilled with the consortium and its progress. During the re-compete, we plan to improve on the success of SpEC with a larger ceiling and longer period of performance,” said Col. Timothy Sejba, director, Innovation and Prototyping Directorate. “SMC is committed to the Space Enterprise Consortium as a means of bringing innovative solutions to the Air Force and the broader DoD space community for years to come.”
“The products being developed within SpEC are changing the future of space and bringing more capability to the warfighter at a faster pace,” said Sejba. “This has been a team effort in every way. Working together with industry partners and other government organizations is what makes SpEC such a success.”
The RFI will be used to inform the final Air Force acquisition strategy for the next SpEC OTA award and will be an opportunity to improve upon the tool already in place. The SpEC team is targeting cybersecurity protection as one focal point for improvement in the future.
“Increasing the cybersecurity health of every member of SpEC is a top priority of the consortium and something we want to focus on in the future to adapt to an ever-changing environment,” said Col. Dennis Bythewood, Air Force Program Executive Officer, Space Development. “We will continue to build upon the successful practices already established by SpEC. Areas of improvement such as cybersecurity will help ensure the prototypes we develop under SpEC lead to effective future capabilities in the hands of our warfighters.”
“SpEC is exceeding our expectations,” said Bythewood. “We hope to continue exceeding our expectations by developing innovative space prototypes leading to cutting-edge capabilities for our warfighters. SpEC is the tool we need for DoD space to enable faster, smarter development of space capabilities to outpace our adversaries.”