HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass.,
Officials are looking to expand a critical facility here that ties together and enables rigorous testing of key military hardware and software.
A hybrid of two acronyms, the facility's full name is a mouthful. Known as the CEIF (pronounced as Seef), the Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (or C4ISR) Enterprise Integration Facility serves as a secure, scalable environment for developing, integrating and testing today's cutting edge technologies.
"What makes the CEIF so unique is its access to secure networks, its minimal overhead, its location within the
While it's important for military systems to function well independently, integrating them, so they work together seamlessly in combat environments, is equally critical.
The CEIF also provides a secure infrastructure for systems, and its network connectivity allows customers to interface with virtually any system on that network, regardless of location.
"This represents an opportunity for enormous cost savings for our users and certainly greater operational utility," Dupin said.
But with such high demand comes limitations; the facility is in need of growth.
The CEIF is currently operating at maximum power and heating, ventilation and air conditioning levels while attempting to accommodate a large number of users.
"It's very difficult to advance cyber security and IT missions, and expand private sector and government collaboration, when we have to turn potential participants away due to insufficient power," Dupin said.
Upgrading the CEIF's power would allow many new participants to use the facility. Doing that would, in turn, lower test and evaluation costs for everyone. It would also reduce test cycle times, test failure rates and functional and operational risks for systems being tested.
Another key improvement would give the CEIF much more connectivity and expand its network capability.
With construction of a 120-foot tower, Hanscom workers could use the facility to connect to
Many local and state authorities believe the CEIF is well-positioned to assume a leadership role in advancing cyber and IT testing and integration, both to support defense missions and potential civil needs. Down the road, the facility could also possibly support university, consortia and commercial activity.
As a result,
"It's an ideal atmosphere for cyber and IT exploration," Dupin said. "And we hope to continue growing and leading the way with existing and evolving technologies."
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