Page 95 - Australian Defence Magazine Dec 2018 - Jan 2019
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“The desired outcome is for the system that we purchase to leverage off pre-exist- ing or close to existing systems. This way we should achieve better value for money for the Australian taxpayer. There are at least five competitors in the market, so there is good competition. Government will shortly make a decision about taking it to market.”
The project is divided into three stages, with Stage 1 aimed at replacing the current system, and Stage 2 adding the capability for the system to work in disconnected circum- stances, such as aboard Navy’s ships. The next increment, Stage 3, has been paused due to a lack of maturity in both the organ- isation itself and the systems currently avail- able to allow all elements of a health system, such as health monitoring equipment, to be connected together. This final phase will lag the other two by around 12 months and is expected to occur in the 2023 timeframe.
“We have to wait for Stage 3 technology to mature and that’s the reason we are keen for the market to sagely inform us on Stage 3, be- cause we don’t want to be in a space where we’re leading with the technology, we want to be in a space where we’re in close trail, it’s not worth the risk and cost,” AVM McDonald added.
Defence Fuel Transformation Program
Valued at $127 million, Tranche 1 of the Defence Fuel Transformation Program was announced by Defence Minister Christo- pher Pyne on September 14, who noted that its goal was to deliver a ‘safer, simpler and more assured’ fuel network in partnership with industry.
Overall, the multi-stage program is val- ued at $1.1 billion over the next 30 years.
Tranche 1 of the Defence Fuel Transforma- tion Program will be delivered over a three-year period and is primarily focussed on Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) risk-reduction ac- tivities, but it will also work towards improv- ing the resiliency of the fuel network.
“Our aim was to break it down into tranches, so we can continue to adopt best commercial practice and provide clarity to Government on our evolving needs, because things can change quickly, and we don’t want to import risk where we don’t need to,” AVM McDonald said.
“The initial three-year tranche plan, fol- lowed by subsequent tranches of five years, gives us the opportunity to undertake pack- ages of work to meet current needs and re- duce network risk.”
Although public perception may be that Defence is a major user of fuel, AVM McDon- ald said that it is responsible for only three per
cent of the total amount of aviation fuel used in Australia each year and about 0.54 per cent of distillate, with total fuel usage around only one per cent of the nation’s total. But he says it is network surety that is the major driver of the transformation program.
“In the past we have been criticised for ap- pearing to pay more than the market rate for our fuel, but what is missed is the fact that we need to pay for surety,” he explained. “If you want to have surety of a product, you generally pay a higher price to secure it.”
Tranche 2 of the program is currently be- ing determined but is intended to slightly overlap the initial package.
ISR integration
JP2096 Phase 1 is Defence’s Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) In- tegration program, which aims to provide infrastructure, improved search and func- tionality for ISR data.
“What we currently
have is a lot of stovepipe
systems with ISR data in
them and what we are cur-
rently building is an appli-
cation which will sit over
the top and mine those da-
tabases,” AVM McDonald
said. “This integration of
data sources will facilitate
analysts to be significantly more productive.”
A proposal is expected to be placed be- fore Government before the end of 2018 and the initial tranche is expected to deliver by 2020. Tranche 2 will oversee a similar capability for deployed networks by 2022 and Tranche 3 will cover other government agencies in the 2023 timeframe.
AVM McDonald said that industry was invited to demonstrate what their solutions could do through a challenging Preview Test and Evaluation activity.
“It sounds like common sense, but it hasn’t necessarily been done in the past and one company responded exceptionally,” he said.
Defensive Cyber Operations
in the deployed environment
Joint Project 9131 Phase 1 seeks to deliver mission systems, training systems, support infrastructure and capability to facilitate the exchange of data between Defence’s strategic and tactical elements.
The project received First Pass approval in September and is scheduled for Second Pass in late 2019. It will include a networked cyber range, support infrastructure and a facility to house the new Joint Cyber Unit.
“This project is all about our ability to de- fend our deployed environment. The thing I’ve learned with regards to cyber and the deployed environment is that it’s a human endeavour. The cost of these projects is actu- ally in the human capital, because you have to employ smart, agile and capable people,” AVM McDonald explained to ADM.
Multi-national Information Systems
The final case study concerns JP2221 – Multinational Information Systems, which will provide networks capable of hosting coalition and partners and allies. Tranche 1 is a ‘Five Eyes’ mission partner environ- ment which was developed and fielded in 11 months to support the recent Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) confer- ence in Port Moresby.
“As we move further forward into soft- ware defined systems and applications,
Defence may need uniformed personnel with the ability to develop and field, where it makes sense, its own software and ap- plications. Such a capability, coupled with industry players who understand the re- quirements and are sufficiently agile, may not only improve the speed of delivery but would improve security. Knowing how it was developed and who developed it has ad- vantages,” AVM McDonald said.
“There is the potential for an excellent partnership between Defence and industry here, because we find that some companies are very good at this, they understand it and consequently help us develop solutions quickly. Increasingly, there are discussions about a Defence-led, industry-enabled part- nership that develops specific software and applications - in my view, that’s the perfect mix. But to deliver it, you need to under- stand it and to understand it, you need to invest in your people.”
The next 12 months will see the majority of these projects either progress to the de- livery phase, or return to Government for milestone decisions, so 2019 is shaping up to be another busy year for Joint Capabili- ties Group. | December 2018 – January 2019 | 95
“The thing I’ve learned with regards to cyber and the deployed environment is that it’s a human endeavour.”

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