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Sherpa 6 to develop technologies for U.S. Army IVAS program

Sherpa 6 Inc., Littleton, Colorado, was awarded a $24,565,468 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to develop a variety of technologies to support research and development concept prototype components for dismounted Soldier mission command systems, the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) and Nett Warrior.
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Soldiers conduct a touchpoint evaluation of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System at Fort Picket, Va., in November 2019 (Picture source: U.S. Army)

Bids were solicited via the internet with one received. Work will be performed in Littleton, Colorado, with an estimated completion date of Sept. 30, 2024. Fiscal 2020 research, development, test and evaluation (Army) funds in the amount of $2,100,000 were obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

On September 25, 2018, the Army Acquisition Executive approved the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) to proceed as a middle tier of acquisition rapid prototyping effort. The Army intends to deliver 2,550 IVAS prototype systems using an iterative approach of four capability sets.

In March 2019, the Army executed Soldier Touch Point (STP) 1 to assess Capability Set 1 prototype capabilities in an operational environment.
- Soldiers and marines equipped with IVAS Capability Set 1 navigated and maneuvered with the Heads-Up Display (HUD) and observed targets in low-light conditions. Warfighters trained in the Synthetic Training Environment, entering and clearing six rooms in a real-world building against virtual targets.
- Overall, warfighters responded favorably to surveys on the usability and perceived usefulness of IVAS.

The IVAS is a HUD, body-worn computer, and networked radio. The Army intends IVAS to use a variety of imaging sensors, artificial intelligence, and machine learning to provide a fully integrated day/night combat capability at the forward edge of the battlefield. The Army has structured IVAS as a middle tier of acquisition, 2-year prototyping period with four capability sets with software sprints and hardware builds. The Army and Microsoft will define each capability set in a design review based on the results from the previous capability set and overarching program goals.
- The IVAS Capability Set 1 is Microsoft’s commercial HoloLens 2 with an integrated commercial, thermal sensor, and Tactical Assault Kit software and maps.
These prototypes operate on an internal battery and require a Wi-Fi network. The Army received delivery of 50 systems in March 2019.
- The IVAS Capability Set 2 will be a modified commercial prototype with integrated tactical radios and GPS capability. The Army expected to receive delivery of 300 systems in October 2019.
- The IVAS Capability Sets 3 was the ruggedized military form factor with integrated low light and thermal sensors.
The Army expects to receive delivery of 600 systems in June 2020.
- The IVAS Capability Set 4 will be the production-ready end-user device to provide enhanced squad lethality.


Commanders of Army and Marine Corps close combat formations and Special Operations Forces units will employ IVAS to achieve overmatch against near-peer threats identified in the National Defense Strategy. The Army intends to evolve the concept of operations in coordination with the joint force through experimentation as the system capabilities mature.
Squads will train with IVAS in the Synthetic Training Environment in a high fidelity, live and mixed reality, immersive environment enabling rapid conduct and repetition of training scenarios.


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