Undersea Acoustic Risk Analysis Decision Aid for Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare (TASW) Mission Planning
Navy SBIR 2019.2 - Topic N192-117
NAVSEA - Mr. Dean Putnam - dean.r.putnam@navy.mil
Opens: May 31, 2019 - Closes: July 1, 2019 (8:00 PM ET)


TITLE: Undersea Acoustic Risk Analysis Decision Aid for Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare (TASW) Mission Planning


TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Information Systems


ACQUISITION PROGRAM: PEO IWS 5, Undersea Warfare Systems, AN/UYQ-100 Undersea Warfare -Decision Support System (USW-DSS)


The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Offerors must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with section 3.5 of the Announcement. Offerors are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws.

OBJECTIVE: Develop acoustic counter-detection risk analysis and assessment tools for incorporation in Anti- Submarine Warfare (ASW) mission planning.


DESCRIPTION: Mission Planning is fundamental to successful Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare (TASW) operations. Current ASW mission planning tools at the theater level optimize detection criteria but do not currently include acoustic counter-detection considerations. Unfortunately, conditions that provide optimal acoustic detection often allow the threat significant opportunity to perform acoustic counter-detection. Addition of acoustic counter- detection would provide decision makers situational awareness they currently lack regarding the risk associated with each mission plan. Current commercial products do not exist that address this Navy specific need.


Mission Planning applications are common in Navy warfare systems, and typically focus on the specific mission area addressed by the system such as AEGIS for air and missile defense. The Theater Undersea Warfare (TUSW) Command focuses on the undersea operational picture and ASW mission planning, which focuses on determining a specific route plan based on statistical analysis. The primary statistic that determines the value of a proposed ASW route plan is the associated Cumulative Detection Probability (CDP), which is optimized over a particular area of water given available assets, their sensor performance, mission time, and anticipated meteorological and oceanographic (METOC) conditions.


The Theater Undersea Warfare Commander (TUSWC) needs automated decision aids to assess the acoustic sonar counter-detection capability of a threat associated with a specific route plan. The Navy seeks innovative algorithms for the AN/UYQ-100 Undersea Warfare Decision Support System (USW-DSS) that add systematic assessment of acoustic counter-detection risk (passive sonar equation and active sonar equation) as an output metric when developing optimized ASW route plans within USW-DSS. Inclusion of both active and passive acoustic counter- detection vulnerabilities during ASW search in overall mission optimization will inform the ASW planners of the risks being incurred by the asset executing the intended future plan, and enable the development of mission plans that provide a cost-benefit tradeoff such as search effectiveness versus threat to platform safety. Development of metrics, such as cumulative counter-detection probability (CC-DP) for incorporation into ASW route plan development, will inform the ASW commander of the potential risk that individual assets are incurring by executing a specified mission plan against certain threats. Addition of an acoustic counter-detection analysis decision aid will provide greater granularity to the ASW route plan optimization process by pairing the associated CDP with a CC- DP.


This mission plan risk analysis will advance ASW Mission Planning by maximizing the “acoustic return-on- investment” or risk versus reward. Possible approaches could include presentation of CDP versus CC-DP for proposed mission plans to allow understanding of the "acoustic return on investment" and allow the operator to make a more informed decision on asset allocation tradeoffs. Risk analysis methodologies are needed for multi- asset and multi-threat ASW scenarios. Specific scenarios will be provided by the government in Phase II during classified work. The maximized “acoustic return-on-investment” is an operational consideration that directly improves the TUSWC’s situational awareness and ASW mission planning capabilities.


This software solution will be tested and delivered to the Government using Defense Intelligence Information Enterprise (DI2E) development tools, as part of the IWS 5 development and integration process. Specific metrics for success (some of which may be classified) will be determined and finalized by the Government. The transition target hardware will be a commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) solution, which will be defined by the Government in the Phase II timeframe.


The Phase II effort will likely require secure access. NAVSEA will process the DD254 to support the contractor for personnel and facility certification for secure access. The Phase I effort will not require access to classified information. If need be, data of the same level of complexity as secured data will be provided to support Phase I work.


Work produced in Phase II will likely become classified. Note: The prospective contractor(s) must be U.S. owned and operated with no foreign influence as defined by DoD 5220.22-M, National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual, unless acceptable mitigating procedures can and have been implemented and approved by the Defense Security Service (DSS). The selected contractor and/or subcontractor must be able to acquire and maintain a secret level facility and Personnel Security Clearances, in order to perform on advanced phases of this project as

set forth by DSS and NAVSEA in order to gain access to classified information pertaining to the national defense of the United States and its allies; this will be an inherent requirement. The selected company will be required to safeguard classified material IAW DoD 5220.22-M during the advanced phases of this contract.


PHASE I: Develop a concept for incorporation of acoustic counter-detection risk analysis into ASW Mission Planning. Demonstrate the feasibility of the concept in meeting the parameters in the Description by modeling and simulation and/or analysis. Develop a Phase II plan. The Phase I Option, if exercised, will include the initial system specifications and a capabilities description to build the prototype in Phase II.


PHASE II: Develop and deliver a prototype for incorporating acoustic counter-detection risk analysis into a USW- DSS instantiation at a shore site. If required, support the Navy in its testing of this technology to ensure that it effectively evaluates the appropriate active and passive acoustic counter-detection risk for an ASW mission plan. If required, assist the Navy with its evaluation of the prototype to determine its capability in meeting the performance goals defined in the Phase II Statement of Work (SOW) and the Navy information assurance specification for classification security. Ensure that the prototype utilizes a design and implementation process for initial integration into USW-DSS defined by the Government in Phase II.


It is probable that the work under this effort will be classified under Phase II (see Description section for details).


PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Support the Navy in transitioning the technology into the appropriate USW-DSS system baseline using the PEO IWS 5E software transition process. Finalize the software design according to Navy requirements for testing evaluation to determine the effectiveness in an operationally relevant environment. Assist the Navy in conducting additional test and validation in accordance with the appropriate peer review required to support capability integration and fielding.


The technology could have private sector commercial potential for construction management because construction sites must develop noise mitigation plans for the neighboring area prior to starting any work. This technology could help provide insight to the management team that develops this noise mitigation plan. The technology could model the anticipated noise of the machines, the noise reduction tools used, and the proximity of the neighboring companies/residents to understand how much noise will be added to neighboring areas or how much a particular tool could reduce the impact on neighboring areas.



1.   White, Robert. “What Role Can a Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare Commander Serve in the New Maritime Strategy?” Naval War College, 23 October 2006. http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/tr/fulltext/u2/a463664.pdf


2.   “AN/UYQ-100 Undersea Warfare Decision Support System (USW-DSS).” U.S. Navy Fact File, Official Navy Website, 24 January 2017. http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=2100&tid=324&ct=2


3.   “Anti-Submarine Warfare Concept of Operations for the 21st Century”. Task Force ASW. http://www.navy.mil/navydata/policy/asw/asw-conops.pdf


4.   “Chapter 9 UNDERWATER DETECTION AND TRACKING SYSTEMS.” Fundamentals of Naval Weapons Systems, Weapons and Systems Engineering Department of the United States Naval Academy. http://fas.org/man/dod-101/navy/docs/fun/part09.htm


KEYWORDS: Theater Anti-Submarine Warfare; TASW; Mission Plan Risk Analysis; Acoustic counter-detection; Cumulative Detection Probability; Passive Sonar Equation; Active Sonar Equation



Chidambar Ganesh





Todd Moore







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