The Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) this week released a solicitation seeking proposals of “proven commercial solutions” that can be immediately demonstrated to give unmanned systems with more capabilities at the edge with a goal to enhance maritime domain awareness.

The solicitation outlines current challenges in exploiting the potential of unmanned vehicles (UxVs) to better meeting DoD’s operational needs for maritime domain awareness, including limited bandwidth on the systems that prevents them from efficiently communicating with manned and other unmanned platforms.

The DIU also highlights a number of capabilities—what it calls the “edge world modeling stack”—that UxVs will need in a disconnected, denied, intermittent and or limited communications environment. These “functionalities” include the ability of the UxVs to sense their surrounding environment, create an operational picture of that environment, share information about the environment with other unmanned systems in the group, seamlessly transition in and out of a given group, communicate with each other with or without a centralized communications note, and provide the various capabilities with low size, weight and power efficiencies.

The edge world modeling stack “would form the basis of rapidly-scalable and reconfigurable UxV coordination for domain awareness functions if they could easily be added to arbitrary UxV platforms,” the DIU says. “At present, DoD’s lack of an edge world modeling stack limits its ability to leverage the broad space of available UxVs to improve domain awareness.”

Submissions are due by June 14.