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Camp Shelby looks to future in cyberspace, drones

By ACFEI Staff2, CHS-III      ( 0 ) Comments   |   Published On Sunday, December 29th, 2013

Camp Shelby looks to future in cyberspace, drones

Mississippi Business Journal Reports: As Camp Shelby’s role as the National Guard’s largest mobilization center is winding down, its leaders are focusing now on a future in cyberspace and drones for the facility.

Camp Shelby [located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi] will be in the center of a research project just getting under way that will bring together the Army, Navy, Air Force and Department of Homeland Security to figure out the most efficient use of open source software for their unmanned aircraft systems.

It’s quite a leap for the historic Forrest County facility. “Camp Shelby has been here for almost a century,” said Lt. Col. Rick Weaver, the operations officer. “We were built on tanks and Howitzers and now we’re looking at the realm of cyberspace and the UAS market.”

A study in July by the Government Accounting Office urging agencies with unmanned aerial vehicles to share their best practices using open source systems prompted the research effort. The government’s unmanned vehicles represent an industry valued at more than $8 billion.

On Dec. 13, the multi-agency program was launched at Camp Shelby’s Joint Forces Training Center. Col. William “Brad” Smith, Camp Shelby’s commander, noted that the Open Source Unmanned Remote and Autonomous Vehicle Systems (OS-URAVS) is one of the first efforts to bring together unmanned vehicles technology with open source software.

Camp Shelby’s size, location, infrastructure and working relationships with various agencies as a Joint Forces Training Center were among the reasons it was selected for the program, Smith said.

The Open Source Software Institute, a trade group headed by Hattiesburg resident John Weathersby, is coordinating the program, which begins with a year long research phase.

The Defense Acquisition University, which teaches people how to navigate the Department of Defense’s purchasing process, will conduct the research program.

“We asked DAU as a neutral third party to come in and help answer questions the GAO report stated,” Weathersby said.

For the original article: http://msbusiness.com/blog/2013/12/27/camp-shelby-looks-future-cyberspace-drones/

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