SOAR Helmet System

Capability Assessment Event

13-14 August 2019

Submission Deadline: CLOSED 05 July 11:59 PM EST


On 13-14 August, SOFWERX in concert with United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), Program Executive Office SOF Warrior (PEO-SW) will host a Capability Assessment Event (CAE) to identify current and near future state Rotary Wing (RW) helmets for consideration and potential use by the United States Army Special Operations Aviation Command (ARSOAC) to replace the existing HGU-56/P helmet system.

What is a Capability Assessment Event (CAE)?

A CAE is a multi-phased, competitive opportunity to present new, novel or provocative solutions to Government Stakeholders in a one-on-one environment that can lead to a near-term award.

Why Should You Participate?

USSOCOM seeks to enter into agreements with industry partners whose solutions are favorably evaluated by USSOCOM subject matter experts. As such, this event is considered competitive in the same manner as a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) or Commercial Solutions Opening (CSO), and solutions will be evaluated independently of one another primarily for technical merit. Therefore, this serves dually as notification of the intent to research the feasibility of an agreement under 10 U. S. Code, Section 2371b and/or Section 2371b(f), and as notice of pre-solicitation activities.

Event Purpose

The currently fielded HGU-56/P RW helmet system has capability gaps that have been identified by the user community.  USSOCOM PEO-SW is looking to improve the current helmet system for Rotary Wing pilots and aircrew by evaluating operational prototypes that address these capability gaps and could be made available for demonstration within 8 months’ time. Successful demonstrations may be considered for follow on production awards to replace ~1300 helmets. Due to user requirements, an aggressive timeline is highly desired and will be a heavily-weighted factor during the evaluation phases. 

Event Overview

Phase I: NLT 05 July White Paper Submissions Due. As the first step of this effort, vendors may submit up to a 3-page whitepaper for consideration no later than 11:59 PM EST on 05 July. The PEO-SW team will review responses and invite specific submitters to a one-on-one presentation to occur in Phase II.

Phase II: 13-14 August Capability Assessment Event (CAE). During the event, invited participants will be allotted a one-on-one session with the USSOCOM PEO-SW evaluation panel to pitch, demonstrate, and discuss their proposed solution.  The forum will include a Q&A portion, and discussions may continue outside of the event. Solution evaluation criteria for the CAE will be outlined in the event invitation. If the USSOCOM evaluation panel favorably evaluates a solution brief, negotiations for Phase III may begin within as little as two weeks. Successfully negotiated awards may fall under any combination of these categories:

– Other Transaction Agreements under 10 U.S. Code, Section 2371b and/or 2371b(f)* (prototyping/production follow-on)
– Procurement contract for experimental purposes 10 U. S. Code, Section 2373
– FAR-based procurement contract under FAR part 15

*An award under 10 U. S. Code, Section 2371b/(f) may result in the further award of a follow-on production agreement without additional competition based on successful prototype completion. The Government may make this follow-on production award even if all successful prototype criteria are not fully met during the prototype project.

Phase III:  Prototype Evaluation(s)

  • Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 5 prototypes will be delivered within two months and will be evaluated in a simulated flight environment by USSOCOM. FOV, head mobility, comfort and overall user acceptance will be evaluated. The sizes and quantity will be provided by USSOCOM based on the performers ability to meet the two month delivery.
  • If the TRL 5 prototypes are considered acceptable, TRL 7 prototypes will then be delivered within an additional 6 months along with a plan to develop their final systems to TRL 8. Upon delivery, USSOCOM may conduct technology readiness testing (TRT) in accordance with Improved RW TRT protocol dated 29 March 2019. Following TRT and safety release, remaining prototypes will be evaluated during actual training flights.

Phase IV: Follow-on Production (FAR based or OTA). Entrance criteria for consideration for this Phase includes:

  • Completion of OP demonstration; out-brief of test results against HGU-56/P requirements; manufacturing plan, delivery rates, and quality assurance plan;
  • Delivery of design artifacts (drawings, architecture, interface control documents, Material Safety Data Sheets, bill of material), subject to disclosed data right exertions;
  • Schedule to complete any remaining qualification or certification requirements;

Note: The Government may make this follow-on production award even if all successful prototype criteria are not fully met during the prototype project.  Successful completion does not obligate the Government to issue a follow-on production contract and that the Government may elect to award none, one or multiple production contracts. The follow-on production award(s) is planned to be an Indefinite Delivery / Indefinite Quantity Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) based contract with Firm Fixed Price Delivery Orders up to ten years or a fixed amount OTA up to ten years.

How You Can Participate

  1. Review Helmet Capability Gaps: Click Here to Review 
  2. Review section 3.7 Performance Requirements of the AIHS dated 1 Nov 1996: Click Here to Review 
  3. Review the Improved RW TRT protocol dated 29 March 2019: Click Here to Review
  4. Download White Paper Template: Click Here to Download
  5. Submit Your Capability: SUBMISSIONS CLOSED on 05 July
    • Invitations and consolations to attend the Capability Assessment Event will be sent on or about 15 July


For event related questions, please contact Keri Cline, 

For technical and contractual related questions, John Helfert,