SOURCE: NCOIC

June 09, 2009 08:30 ET

NCO Consortium Trains Australian Defence Force and Industry Officials

Country May Be First to Apply Consortium's Net-Centric Tools to Acquisition Process

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA,--(Marketwire - June 9, 2009) - At Australia's Rapid Prototyping, Development and Evaluation facility, a team of technical experts from the Network Centric Operations Industry Consortium (NCOIC™) recently led Australian government and industry officials from its Department of Defence (DoD) and its Defence Information and Electronic Systems Association (ADIESA) through a training session designed to show how the NCOIC's interoperability tools might meet the country's unique needs. Their discussions also centered on ways to apply these tools to Australia's Defence Capability Development and Procurement Processes.

"The Australian Department of Defence is a keen supporter of NCOIC, its principles and tools," said Australian Air Commodore John McGarry. "During 2009 we aim to apply NCOIC products to the acquisition process to better define interoperability requirements and improve through-life systems integration prospects."

Australia's DoD is an NCOIC government member; its representatives serve on the consortium's Technical Council. ADIESA is also a member; its delegates actively participate in NCOIC's quarterly plenary meetings.

Although the country's population is relatively small (23 million people), it has the 14th largest defence budget in the world. It employs military forces in 11 theaters overseas and at home to protect the country and its national interests. It is a middle power in global terms, meaning that it maintains complex relationships with close allies, coalition partners and regional nations.

"Getting information across the 'last mile' has always been the toughest challenge, yet we must see to it that future forces can access information as if they were in the middle of the network, rather than on the edge," said Brett Biddington, ADIESA chairman. "If we adopt globally accepted standards and tools, then we can begin to build all sorts of relationships -- between Asian, European, American and other forces -- because we will all have the same glue."

NCOIC's Australian training session centered on net-centric tools including SCOPE and NCAT, described as follows:

The Systems of Systems, Capabilities, Operations, Programs and Enterprises (SCOPE) helps developers to understand the specific and subtle aspects of procurement requirements. It is a conceptual model that describes the operational and technical space in which systems can interoperate with each other over a network. It measures how far in, or out, of the "network-centricity box" a system is, and how well it would work with other networked systems.

The NCOIC Analysis Tool (NCAT) is a question-and-answer method that users can tailor, in order to measure their specific net-centricity goals. An NCAT analysis can determine factors such as: Is the level of net-centricity right for the intended environment? Will a program interoperate with other programs? What would it take to exceed customer intent by ten percent? Is a proposal weak in any areas? An NCAT assessment can uncover previously unknown factors and point to options not considered earlier.

"We provided the Australians detailed information regarding how to apply these and other NCOIC tools to meet this unique country's procurement and development needs," said Ken Cureton, NCOIC Technical Council vice chair. "We also saw a highly innovative industry and government partnership that places significant value on implementing their network centric warfare principles to meet their defence requirements."

About NCOIC

The Network Centric Operations Industry Consortium (NCOIC™) is a not-for-profit international association committed to integrating existing and emerging open standards into a common evolving global framework, employing a common set of principles and processes, to assist with rapid global deployment of network-centric applications. Established in 2004, NCOIC consists of representatives from defense companies, large-scale systems integrators, information technology providers, government agencies and academia working in concert with advisory bodies consisting of government officials, standards groups and other stakeholders. For more information, visit www.NCOIC.org

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