IWN aims for phase two

Integrated Wireless Network

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Federal officials issued a request for proposals this week for the second phase of the Integrated Wireless Network initiative.

IWN is a joint project among the Justice, Homeland Security and Treasury departments to create a secure and reliable wireless network serving 80,000 law enforcement users from those three departments at 2,500 sites, including cities, highways, land and coastal borders, and ports of entry.

Phase one of the initiative resulted in an "advisory downselect" of potential bidders to five companies: AT&T, Boeing, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin and Motorola. Other companies still interested in phase two participation may do so, "as long as they recognize the inherent risks of doing so," the RFP states.

Vendors selected to participate in phase two will be awarded fixed price task orders to submit detailed technical, management and cost proposals. During phase three, government officials will most likely award a contract to a single company. The contract could be worth up to $10 billion in 10 years to implement the network. The government reserves the right to award the phase three contract to more than a single vendor, the RFP states.

The technology involved in creating a seamless, nationwide wireless network will likely evolve, the RFP states. As a result, "the government strongly encourages innovative, big picture, solution sets that address IWN requirements," the RFP states.

About the Author

David Perera is a special contributor to Defense Systems.

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