DME Explosion at the FAA: Part 2

Kevin Shaker_65 x 85by Kevin Shaker, Analyst, Market Intelligence

In DME Explosion at FAA7 FAA Programs Seeing Growth in DME Funding: Part 1 I gave a quick rundown on which Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) programs had requested larger amounts of development, modernization, and enhancement (DME) funding for their FY16 IT budget. Today I’ll touch on the largest technology priorities within the FAA and their related programs.


FAA’s program with the largest DME increase, DataComm – the organization’s attempt to automate enhancements for air control communication and data linkage between aircraft and ground users – has modeling & simulation requirements that’ll need to be met before its implementation in FY16-17. You’ll want to show how your product can aid in their testing efforts and efficiently meet their rollout deadline. If your company has collaboration solutions, you’ll also want to reach out to DataComm decision makers to indicate how your product can help automate data transfer from aircraft to ground users.

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Big Data Opportunities in the Pipeline at DHS & DOJ

Tomas OKeefe_65x85Tomas O’Keefe, Consultant, Market Intelligence

At last Big data on blackboardweek’s AFCEA Homeland Security conference, information sharing and cybersecurity were some hot topics that seemed to take center stage. These are critical elements of the homeland security enterprise, tied to protecting information and ensuring it gets delivered to the right analyst, at the right time. A topic that wasn’t discussed as much, but continues to play a vital role in the federal IT landscape, is big data. I’d like to share some insights on where DHS and DOJ are looking to expand their big data capabilities, based on the sessions I attended.

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Cyber Attacks an Inconvenient Truth – Now What?

Lloyd McCoy_65x85by Lloyd McCoy Jr., Consultant

The Cyber Attacks an Inconvenient Truthtime-honored debate over cyber information sharing has picked-up steam in the last few months, with recent high-profile attacks on companies and government agencies, including: Sony, Target, Home Depot, OPM, and DOD  (just to name a few). Congress and the President are renewing calls to improve, or create from scratch, ways industry and government can work together to limit these threats. The consensus is: effective and damaging hacks are the new normal. Where there hasn’t been agreement is what to do about it.  Efforts from lawmakers suggest some form of legislation could be in the works.

The next few weeks we will see hearings and debate over several legislative bills, from both sides of the fence, all aimed at enhancing information sharing between industry and government.  Both the resurrected Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) and the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act (CISA) bills would enable information sharing while offering liability protection. An upcoming bill from the Senate Homeland Security Committee would make the Department of Homeland Security the broker for information sharing, an expansion of the work it is already doing with commercial critical infrastructure providers.

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Spending Increases at Commerce to Drum-Up Opportunity for COTS Vendors

Christopher Wiedemann_headshot-65 x 85by Chris Wiedemann, Senior Analyst

Although Learn More About the Department of Commercethe agency often flies under the radar, the Department of Commerce (DOC) has one of the largest IT budgets in the civilian space and we’re seeing it continue to increase.  Moreover, the department is seeing dramatic annual increases in its Development, Modernization, and Enhancement (DME) budgets, which is both rare and a great sign for the COTS community. Between complete overhauls of patent and trademark systems, building out infrastructures to support the 2020 Census, and even supercomputing to support weather prediction and analytics, the mission areas and opportunities for COTS vendors are broad and deep.

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4 Areas Air Force Looks to COTS Vendors to Fuel Innovation

Stephanie Headshot 65x85by Stephanie Meloni, Senior Analyst

With the 20163D Wire Plane DOD Budget Request kicking around Congress, we’ll have to wait and see how the budget ultimately shakes out. We are also still waiting to receive the FY16 Information Technology budget requests for the Services. But, with an overall increase in the DOD request, we have reason to hope that when the final spending bill does pass, it will still include more funding than FY15 enacted budgets.

The Air Force’s total budget base (or “blue”) request for FY16 is 122.2 Billion dollars, which represents about a 12% increase from FY15. Operations and Maintenance, which has long been an area targeted for cuts, along with Procurement, will surprisingly see the biggest increases in the FY16 request. Also interestingly, RDT&E Research Development Test and Evaluation (RDT&E) shows an increase of about 13% from last year. The Air Force is an organization that is very committed to the idea of innovation. They spend more on RDT&E than the rest of the Services.

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7 FAA Programs Seeing Growth in DME Funding: Part 1

Kevin Shaker_65 x 85by Kevin Shaker, Analyst, Market Intelligence

The Plane Taking OffFederal Aviation Administration (FAA) continues to be a great entry point for the COTS community. In FY15, the president requested roughly $2.9B for FAA FY16 IT operations ($160M more than what was enacted for FY15). The entirety of this IT budget increase will go to Development, Modernization, & Enhancement (DME) funding (money dedicated to investing in new tools and capabilities). While the new numbers aren’t guaranteed, they offer insight into which FAA programs are going to be the focal points in FY16.

Here are 7 programs that will likely experience a substantial increase in DME funding, along with the suggested DME dollar increase, and the primary solutions the programs are in need of:

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Digital Service Teams a Boon to COTS Vendors

Tomas OKeefe_65x85Tomas O’Keefe, Consultant, Market Intelligence

This pastDigital Services week, when President Obama released his FY16 budget, there was something in the request that piqued my interest. Chris Wiedemann did a great job breaking down some of the top takeaways of the Exhibit 53 in his last blog post, but I thought I’d share an additional nugget that was buried in agency budget requests: the creation of Digital Service teams at nearly all of the major federal departments and independent agencies. The establishment of these teams, signals new avenues of opportunity for COTS manufacturers who sell to the federal government.

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