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AI and Machine Facilitated Planning gaining traction in Defence

by Angel Jemmett •
Free resource

The Department of Defence’s Science and Technology Group (DSTG) is currently seeking a delivery partner that will help it research and develop Machine Facilitated Planning (MFP).

A DSTG Request for Tender (RFT) outlines its current MFP state and future direction.

DSTG’s Command and Control Joint Task Force decision making is currently exclusively human based. The RFT states that as automation use increases across the battlespace - particularly in the information domain and at the tactical level - the agency must continue to keep up with emerging technologies.

While DSTG will retain human expertise in Course of Action (COA) planning, AI-driven solutions will help it increase the speed and agility of important decision-making, according to the RFT.

Defence aims to develop concepts and technologies, such as MFP, to support and increase levels of automation within Information Warfare command teams and rapidly deploy COAs across multiple teams.

A decision support system (DSS) that contains a catalogue of command team expert knowledge and which can rapidly generate partial COA plans is the desired outcome of the RFT

The work executed as a result of the RFT will act as a foundation for developing broader DSS systems that can:

  • automatically learn via encodings of expert knowledge
  • automatically generate COA plans with various outcomes and recommendations
  • autonomously manage and re-plan the COAs at rapid speeds across the operational and tactical levels, where possible.

The successful supplier will:

  • Identify the requirements, technologies and key research and development challenges for machine facilitated planning
  • Develop conceptual approaches to address possible challenges
  • Develop a plan for researching and developing technologies that may be executed in further project phases.

The final deliverable of this initial phase will consist of a report and a brief to all relevant stakeholders summarising the findings, requirements and a research and development plan.

The estimated start date for the contract is 1 March 2022. Expected contract duration is 6 months with possible 12-month extensions.  

  • Federal
  • Software
  • Defence