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Case Study - GIS Application Development

United States Navy

Forward Slope Inc. has extensive experience in the Navy Command and Control (C2) space. FSI’s President/CEO and CTO started developing C2 software in the 1980’s, and have been heavily integrated with MCTSSA, DISA, and Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center since. This rich history coupled with next generation technologies such as services oriented and enterprise architectures (SOA/EA), cloud and Big Data technologies such as Hadoop, Accumulo, and Storm, leaves FSI at the forefront of developing the Navy’s next generation C2 applications and services.

Command and Control Rapid Prototype Continuum (C2RPC)

In 2008, FSI was awarded an Office of Naval Research (ONR) contract to develop Role Relevant Representation and Visualization (R3V). Working with other companies such as Soar Technologies, CUBRC, SAIC, Lockheed Martin IS&GS, General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT), and others, FSI was a key architect of the ONR Reference Implementation Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) which has become known as the C2 Rapid Prototype Continuum. This Science and Technology project provides an architecture that supports ADM Willard’s concept for C2 of C2, and the understanding throughout the enterprise of the status of forces under a commander’s control. Previous systems had displayed who was where based on latest updates, but C2RPC moved the Commander’s Common Operational Picture (COP) into the next generation, not only showing who was where, but also what they are tasked to do, what their readiness levels are to accomplish assigned or unassigned tasking, and also other information dominance pillars which affect the fight, such as network operations status, intelligence information, METOC impacts, and blue force data. 

FSI’s contribution to C2RPC was in the development of the SOA and the ability to visually fuse data associated with a specific entity within a geospatial context. To do this, FSI worked with open standards such as the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) standards for web feature services (WFS), web map services (WMS), and Keyhole Markup Language (KML) in order to generate geospatially referenced information to support C2 decision making. The most visible capability FSI developed, was the concept of a "Halo Service", whereby a halo of pertinent status information is displayed around entities on the map. This provides commanders a dashboard of status, which they can then use to make decisions on how to direct the employment of the assets under their control. 

C2RPC has been deployed in the Ozone Widget Framework (OWF) for the past three years.  OWF provides a platform whereby applications can be deployed in a web based environment, and also facilitates the interaction of applications through inter-widget communication.  This capability allows for one widget or applications to access data from another widget and provides a seamless and composeable work environment for the C2 user. 

As C2RPC evolved, an operational prototype was sustained at Commander Pacific Fleet in Hawaii, starting in 2010. As C2RPC continued to evolve, operational prototypes were then deployed in multiple other commands around the world, including Commander Fifth Fleet in Bahrain which commands US Naval Forces under Central Command, and Commander Sixth Fleet in Naples, Italy which commands US Naval Forces in Europe and Africa.

C2RPC is a very successful S&T program, and FSI and the other contractors working on the system demonstrated outstanding team work in order to deliver an advanced capability under very dynamic requirements. As the system was being developed and deployed at various operational commands, requirements for enhancements and new capabilities were continually being adjudicated and managed. FSI utilized it’s proprietary Agile Software Development Procedure to develop a management plan to communicate and prioritize multiple competing priorities and communicate to the government customer in order to maximize value in development.  C2RPC  is currently being integrated into Release Build 1 for the Maritime Tactical C2 (MTC2) program. FSI is a key contributor to this effort as a subcontractor to SAIC. 

During the course of development of C2RPC, FSI transitioned from one of six prime contractors working for ONR, to one of two prime contractors supporting the effort through SPAWAR Systems Center, Pacific vehicles. FSI has worked to be a fair and equitable prime contractor to our subcontractors, while being a trusted partner of our government customer to accomplish projects on time and within the allotted budget. FSI has supported C2RPC development and integration on over 12 SSC Pacific task orders.