Rapid Integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) Event

01 February – 19 May 2021

Submissions Closed 16 December 2020 11:59 PM ET

U.S. Citizens Only

SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM PEO-SOF Digital Applications (PEO-SDA), is conducting a series of rapid integration sprints to insert Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other advanced technologies into existing software supporting currently fielded capabilities. Workshops will bring Warfighters together with software engineers for rapid iterative code sprints via integrated teamwork. Sprints culminate with demonstration, assessment, and potential combat evaluation. Capability providers and current operational Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) are encouraged to participate.

The objective is to accelerate fielding of enhanced capabilities via novel integrations including the insertion of AI and AI-enabling technologies into modular open software-intensive system components. Multiple rapid integrations will be selected during a series of events through May 2021. Events will facilitate multi-vendor collaboration on how best to satisfy operational requirements via integrated capabilities through rapid iteration and user assessment.

USSOCOM will select nine (9) Subject Matter Experts to participate in sprints to prepare for and execute rapid integration threads. The following expertise is desired for technical collaboration between engineers, developers, and operational End Users:

  • Enterprise architecture and engineering to support vertical integration of tactical and operational situational awareness through a unified SOF Common Operational Picture (COP). Expertise with TAKServer API to support enhanced Command and Control (C2) via sensor integration and synchronization between connected nodes utilizing a uniquely SOF data layer.
  • 3D/4D Field Survey Data Collection with commercially available items compatible with open standard 3D data formats. Able to provide technical expertise on sensor data collection, data compatibility across applications and over time as data evolves, and existing SOF end-user platforms capable of visualizing digital products and data services.
  • Interactive visualizations and analysis of disparate data to amplify cognition using commercially available items compatible with open geospatial data formats. Software engineering expertise in automated correlation and conflation of diverse datasets and joint information processing in a flexible viewing environment suitable and specific to SOF.
  • Human-centered design and man-machine interfaces for situational awareness and tactical data input and integration. Expertise with aural, visual, haptic recognition, interface, and response.

Subject Matter Experts must submit a single-page unclassified graphic Operational Viewpoint (OV) diagram of proposed rapid integration of existing capabilities indicating operational need to be addressed and current software systems, applications, and data to be integrated.

  • PEO-SDA desires cross-program integration of systems currently fielded, or soon to be fielded, to: accelerate AI-enabled, enhanced capabilities; correct deficiencies such as lack of interoperability or cross-domain capabilities during operational use; or demonstrate unconventional use or modification for SOF-peculiar technology application.
  • Rapid integration projects generally include modified use of existing technologies for data transfer, data storage, data management, data parsing, data formats, data fusion, and software translators and tools for integrating components of different systems into novel end-to-end mission threads unique to Special Operations.
  • Integration projects may also accelerate capability deployment by transitioning on-going technology exploration or development into operational use.
  • Development projects will not be considered.

Event Timeline
Phase 1 – 17 November 2020 to 16 December 2020 Submissions Open:
Interested Subject Matter Experts must submit their proposed integration OV and Curriculum Vitae (CV) per the instructions below. Submissions will be reviewed and evaluated by USSOCOM for individual potential to contribute to the collaborative Rapid Integration Sprint based on operational capability needs, integration readiness, and technical qualifications. SOFWERX will notify those selected to participate NLT 07 January.

A total $48K stipend is available to the selected individual participants* per below:

  • To receive the full $48K stipend, participants are required to contribute significant technical expertise during all phases (phases 3-5).
  • A $12K stipend will be distributed at the conclusion of each month (Feb – May). Satisfactory individual contribution during each of the aforementioned phases equates to the $48K total stipend.

*Government personnel who are selected as Subject Matter Experts will not be paid a stipend, but will be reimbursed for their travel via existing USSOCOM mechanisms through PEO-SDA.

Phase 2 – 16 December 2020 to 07 January 2021 Downselect: Individuals with favorably evaluated submissions will receive an invitation for advancement on or around 07 January 2021.

Phase 3 – 01 February to 05 February 2021 Planning Kick-Off and Work Group Collaboration: SMEs will convene as teams in a facilitated workshop to brief selected integration OVs to the operational community and begin technical collaboration on agile sprints for rapid iteration on mission threads.

Phase 4 – Integrated Teamwork:

  • Sprint 1 – 23 February to 25 February: Teams convene with Technical Facilitator to assess progress, prioritize backlog, and address opportunities and challenges across mission threads
  • Sprint 2 – 09 March to 11 March: Teams convene with Technical Facilitator and End User representatives to assess progress, prioritize backlog, and incorporate feedback from the operational community
  • Sprint 3 – 22 March to 26 March Rapid Integration during Field Event at Muscatatuck, IN: Teams interact with the SOF community while conducting end-to-end workflows and technical integration experimentation in a collaborative field environment
  • Sprint 4 – 06 April to 08 April: Teams convene with Technical Facilitator to review outcomes of field event, incorporate user input, prioritize backlog, and exploit opportunities across mission threads
  • Sprint 5 – 26 April to 30 April Rapid Iterations during Field Assessment at Fort Story, VA: Teams exercise AI-enabled and enhanced, integrated capabilities while engaging with the SOF community to accelerate delivery of innovative solutions
  • Sprint 6 03 May 2021 to 05 May 2021 Demonstration and Assessment at Fort Story, VA: Teams must demonstrate operational viability and performance of integrated capabilities while undergoing SOF user validation including technical, functionality, and vulnerability assessments. Successful mission threads may be integrated into SOF operational scenarios and considered for deployment within existing Programs of Record or other partnered efforts.

Phase 5 – 18 May 2021 to 19 May 2021 Outbriefs with SOF Community in Tampa, FL: Individual SMEs and teams must brief acquisition Program Managers, leadership, and SOF communities of interest on rapid integration of AI and transition into fielded capabilities.

For event-related questions, please contact Kinsey Crim, kinsey.crim@sofwerx.org
For technical and programmatic questions, please send to USSOCOM, mss@socom.mil