In its effort to quickly arm Ukraine against Russia, the Pentagon has announced the equivalent of an open casting call for companies to offer weapons and commercial systems that can be rushed to the fight.
The Defense Department on Friday posted a broad request for information from industry on the federal contracting website sam.gov. The move is part of a stepped-up dialogue between the Pentagon and industry, and a sign of the challenge of boosting arms production in response to the ongoing conflict.
The RFI, on behalf of the new undersecretary of defense for acquisitions and sustainment, Bill LaPlante, is seeking input “from across industry” about air defense, anti-armor, anti-personnel, coastal defense, counter battery, unmanned aerial systems, and communications equipment, such as secure radios and satellite internet gear.
To that end, the DoD asks that responding companies describe their weapon, product or system in 100 words or less, and ― in the case of munitions ― check off “appropriate target type(s),” such as area, fixed, airborne/missile, maritime, mine, moving, hard or soft. The RFI says information received will be used to develop requirements for an actual solicitation at a later date.