The U.S. Army canceled the solicitation for the Section 804 Middle Tier Acquisition (MTA) Rapid Prototyping phase of the Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) on Jan. 16.
“Based on feedback and proposals received from industry, the Army has determined it is necessary to revisit the requirements, acquisition strategy and schedule before moving forward”, said a service statement.
“We remain committed to the OMFV program as it is our second-highest modernization priority, and the need for this ground combat vehicle capability is real. It is imperative we get it right for our Soldiers,” said Dr. Bruce Jette, Assistant Secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology.
Since its inception, the OMFV program has represented an innovative approach to Army acquisition by focusing on delivering an essentially new capability to armored brigade combat teams under a significantly reduced timeline compared to traditional acquisition efforts.
“The Army asked for a great deal of capability on a very aggressive schedule,” said Jette. “Despite an unprecedented number of industry days and engagements, to include a draft request for proposal over the course of nearly two years — all of which allowed industry to help shape this competition — it is clear a combination of requirements and schedule overwhelmed industry’s ability to respond within the Army’s timeline.”
“The most prudent means of ensuring long-term programmatic success is to get this multi-billion-dollar effort correct,” said Gen. John M. Murray, commander of Army Futures Command. “We are going to take what we have learned and apply it to the OMFV program to develop our path and build a healthy level of competition back into the program.”
The Army plans to revise and re-solicit the OMFV requirements on a competitive basis.
The OMFV program ended up with only one bidder, General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS) offering purpose-built vehicle, after the disqualification of the Raytheon-Rheinmetall team offering KF 41 Lynx Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV).
U.S. Army OMFV Program
The Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) program is seeking to replace the U.S. Army’s Bradley Fighting Vehicles (BFV).
The program is part of the larger Next Generation Combat Vehicles (NGCV) program. Other programs under NGCV are Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle, or AMPV; Mobile Protected Firepower, or MPF; future robotic combat vehicles, or RCV; and the next-generation main battle tank.
The NGCV-OMFV will be designed to maneuver Soldiers in the future operating environment to a position of advantage to engage in close combat and deliver decisive lethality during the execution of combined arms maneuver. NGCV must exceed current capabilities while overmatching similar threat class systems.
The vehicle must have the following capabilities:
• Optionally manned. It must have the ability to conduct remotely controlled operations while the crew is off platform.
• Capacity. It should eventually operate with no more than two crewmen and possess sufficient volume under armor to carry at least six Soldiers.
• Transportability. Two OMFVs should be transportable by one C-17 aircraft and be ready for combat within 15 minutes.
• Dense urban terrain operations and mobility. Platforms should include the ability to super elevate weapons and simultaneously engage threats using main gun and an independent weapons system.
• Protection. It must possess requisite protection to survive on the contemporary and future battlefield.
• Growth. It will possess sufficient size, weight, architecture, power, and cooling for automotive and electrical purposes to meet all platform needs and allow for pre-planned product improvements.
• Lethality. It should apply immediate, precise and decisively lethal extended range medium caliber, directed energy, and missile fires in day/night all-weather conditions, while moving and/or stationary against moving and/or stationary targets. The platform should allow for mounted, dismount, and unmanned system target handover.
• Embedded Platform Training. It should have embedded training systems that have interoperability with the Synthetic Training Environment.
• Sustainability. Industry should demonstrate innovations that achieve breakthroughs in power generation and management to achieve increased operational range and fuel efficiency; increased silent watch, part and component reliability, and significantly reduced sustainment burden.
The earlier announced timeline for the OMFV has a request for proposal (RFP) to be released early 2019, an engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) contract to be awarded in the early fiscal year 2020, and low-rate initial production (LRIP) to begin in the fiscal year 2023, he said. Fielding was planned by the end of the fiscal year 2026.