The U.S. Air Force may award a contract worth up to $600 million for aircraft mission planning support by early next year. The service is likely to issue a Request for Proposals for the Mission Planning Support Contract IV (MPSC IV) in the next two weeks.

In August 2017, Florida-based Summit Technologies, Inc. won a five-year contract worth up to $250 million for MPSC III to back Hill AFB, Utah’s Mission Planning Enterprise by providing global mission planning support to Air Force wings, groups and squadrons.

MPSC IV is to mark a transition from the more than decade old Joint Mission Planning Software (JMPS) to the future JMPS Open Mission Systems (JOMS).  For its part, JMPS replaced the Air Force Mission Support System-UNIX system fielded in 2004.

Mission planning support under the MPSC IV contract is envisioned for most Air Force aircraft, including the A-10, B-1B, B-2, B-52, C-21, C-27, C-5, C-17, C-130, CH-146, CH-147, HH-60G/W, E-3 AWACS, E-4, E-8 Joint STARS, F-15, F-16, F-22, F-35, KC-10, KC-46, KC-135,  MQ-1, MQ-9, RC-135, RQ-4 Global Hawk, T-1, T-6, T-7, T-38, U-2, UH-1N/TH-1H, and executive transport, per a May 19 draft performance work statement (PWS).

“Currently, some of these platforms provide their own mission planning support (i.e. F-22 and F-35),” the PWS said. “These platforms are listed to allow for support should it be needed at any point during this contract. Additional platforms may be added at a later date.”

At an MPSC IV industry day briefing on Feb. 1-2, Christianna McElheny, the program manager, said that “bidders will not have existing JOMS experience, as JOMS is not yet fully operational, but they will be given an opportunity to develop the necessary experience as JOMS progresses and evolves,” per briefing minutes. “The main responsibility of the contractor in reference to JOMS is to follow and support enterprise processes, whether they apply to JMPS or JOMs etc.”

Beside Summit Technologies and other small businesses, the industry day included Northrop Grumman [NOC], Science Applications International Corp. [SAIC], and Leidos [LDOS].