RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA, USA, August 8, 2022 / — Secmation is excited to announce a $1.8M direct to Phase II SBIR contract award with the U.S. Air Force Armament Directorate! Over 70 proposals were submitted and down-selected to 18 small business innovators who were invited to pitch their technology ideas at Armament Directorate’s Weapons Pitch Day 2022. This ‘Shark Tank’ style pitch event was held at the Doolittle Institute in Niceville, Florida, near Eglin Air Force Base on July 20th, 2022.
Secmation’s CEO, Dr. Hal Aldridge, and Business Development Manager, Jamie V. Roseborough, were invited to attend Weapon’s Pitch Day 2022 to pitch Secmation’s ‘Secure AI Processing Platform for Expendable Systems’ (SAPPES) idea to a judging panel of senior leaders. The goal of SAPPES is to integrate Digital Engineering, Cybersecurity, and AI to enable rapid development and transition of Air Force weapons systems from simulation to deployed in the field.
A judging panel listening to the pitches consisted of senior leaders from Air Combat Command, AFWERX, U.S.A.F. Armament Directorate, and Air Force Research Lab (AFRL). Panelists included Maj. Gen. R. Scott Jobe, Col. Sloan Hollis, Col. Woodrow ‘Tony’ Meeks, Col. Christopher Buckley, and Col. Martin Salinas. The judging panel also included Mr. Michael Sorial, the Air Force Deputy Program Executive Officer for Weapons, Armament Directorate, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Materiel Command, and Dr. Paul Ret, Chief of Disruptive Futures Division in the Armament Directorate. The Armament Directorate is focused on six Innovation Targets which include Digital Engineering, Reach, Autonomous Collaboration, Non-Kinetic Effects, Sensing and Communications, and Affordable Mass.
“The concept for SAPPES came from combining two of our existing Department of Defense R&D programs which focus on encrypted and cyber secure embedded open architectures. Combining these technologies with advanced artificial intelligence algorithms and machine learning, we can more rapidly and securely use Digital Engineering to go from software simulation to hardware experimentation helping close the last mile of weapons systems development,” Dr. Aldridge commented. He continued, “these small systems are needed in the field today, but we have to develop them with a security-first mindset in order to rapidly get an effective piece of technology into the hands of the warfighter.”
Secmation is eager to collaborate on SAPPES with Riverside Research, Clarity Cyber, and BAE Systems. Riverside Research is a not-for-profit organization advancing scientific research in the interest of national security. Research areas include AI/ML, secure and resilient systems, optics, electromagnetics, commercial ISR, and collection planning. Clarity Cyber provides cyber digital engineering services for national security system solutions. Clarity Cyber’s work with DARPA has developed network modeling and simulation platform and their training solutions are used to help deliver the next generation of warfighter solutions.“BAE Systems is pleased to be supporting Secmation to mature their product and assist with rapid transition to our next-generation multi-function seekers,” said Peter Dusaitis, Chief Scientist at BAE Systems’ FAST Labs™ Research and Development organization. “Additional weapons manufacturing partners are supporting SAPPES to assist in the transition of the technology to future weapon systems programs.”