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Navy Eyes Competition for Autonomy Baseline Manager Contract

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The U.S. Navy is set to kick off competition for a potential five-year contract for software development efforts to support the service’s forthcoming unmanned vehicle programs, Breaking Defense reported Wednesday.

Alan Baribeau, a spokesman for the Navy, said the branch’s unmanned systems program office expects to issue a solicitation for the Autonomy Baseline Manager contract in the coming months and award the contract by the summer of 2023.

The ABM contract “serves a central role” in the unmanned systems program office’s “autonomy ecosystem,” according to a slide obtained by the publication through a Freedom of Information Act request. 

The service’s program office, PMS 406, has been leading several projects that seek to bring together various software and central to that effort is a software factory, dubbed Rapid Autonomy Integration Lab. The ABM contractor will work on the RAIL initiative.

The vision for the RAIL is that many industry partners … will bring their code to the RAIL,” Capt. Pete Small, the former program manager, told the publication in 2021. 

The ABM is meant to serve as “that support infrastructure to help manage the process, enforce the standards, configuration management, and just overall execution of the development and certification period and software,” added Small.