IDEaS and C4ISR
The Innovation for Defence Excellence and Security program made its debut in April 2018 and has since brought new and exciting opportunities for innovators to participate in the enhancement of defence and security capabilities for our Canadian Armed Forces. From investing in lightweight ballistic protection, to cyber attribution, to COVID-19 moral trauma on the frontline, this innovation program seeks to leave no stone unturned in the pursuit of building its defence innovation ecosystem. It comes as no surprise that C4ISR represents a key domain in IDEaS challenges and an area of priority for the Defence Team.
|The Competitive Projects element awards up to $1.2M in phased development funding to propel technology forward.|
– IDEaS Website
Known as the military’s nervous system, C4ISR is integral for the support of military operations. More so, it constitutes an increasingly critical player in an era where information and communication technologies are subject to a rapid evolution, transforming situational awareness into a pivotal component for mission success.
Over the span of four years, the IDEaS program has launched a total of 64 challenges, 25 of which encompassed the collection of subsystems represented under C4ISR. In its latest Call for Proposals (CFP5) under the Competitive Projects element, three of six challenges were in this domain:
- Worth a thousand sources: A fused picture for continental surveillance
- We sea you: Digital tracking and accounting on navy vessels
- High bandwidth, low profile: Next generation point-to-point communication solutions for the field
Two C4ISR projects, funded through Competitive Projects first call for proposals, have advanced to the program’s Test Drive element. These innovative solutions have been acquired and are being put to the test with the Canadian Armed Forces.
Sapper Labs Cyber Solutions developed a Canadian Active Cyber Defence Platform that has been undergoing military testing through IDEaS. The platform delivers an innovative approach for automated detection and attribution of Advanced Persistent Threats (APTs) using a proprietary HUNT tool. The platform also makes use of a Security, Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) tool to activate playbooks when malicious activities are detected, enhancing the security postures of the network.
Ecopia, based in Toronto, was successful in its bid to provide its technology through the IDEaS program to be tested in a real world environment. They will be participating in a Test Drive to assess the capability of Artificial Intelligence (AI) to extract features from geospatial imagery, with a goal of accelerating the tasking, collection, processing, exploitation, and dissemination (TCPED) cycle and enhancing the overall Canadian Armed Forces operational planning and decision/action cycles.
IDEaS has also been investing in a solution to maximize Artificial Intelligence-Machine Learning across the Canadian Armed Forces’ highest priority Air-ISR (Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance) sensors to promote rapid Sensor-to-Shooter (S2S) effects.
C4ISR is a significant domain for which the Canadian Armed Forces will continuously build on, and the IDEaS program will continue to seek new advances in this realm.
In order to be the first to know of our latest challenge launches such as the newest iteration of its Counter Unmanned Aerial Systems challenge in January 2022 be sure to sign up to the IDEaS program subscriber list!