NIMA Sources Sought for Commercial MSI/HSI Exploitation Tools

12 January 2001

[Printed Issue Date: January 10, 2001]

From the Commerce Business Daily Online via GPO Access []


CLASSCOD: 70--General-Purpose Information Technology Equipment--Potential Sources Sought

OFFADD: National Imagery and Mapping Agency, Contracting for Acquisition & Technology Directorate, Attn: PCA/D-88, 4600 Sangamore Road, Bethesda, MD 20816-5003

SOL NMA201-01-RFI-0001
DUE 020901 POC Ms. Sylvia Spriestersbach, Technical POC, e-mail:; and Mr. Chris Diez, e-mail:

The National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA), Programs Management Division (ATTM), Pathfinder 2002 Team (Pf 02) is submitting the following Request for Information (RFI) regarding commercial Multispectral Imagery and Hyperspectral Imagery (MSI/HSI) exploitation tools or technologies (see Background below). This synopsis does not constitute a Request for Proposals, nor is it to be construed as a commitment by the Government to acquire the services or products cited herein for which information may be submitted. The objective will be to assess low- to high-end tools or technologies to exploit commercial multispectral and hyperspectral imagery. These tools should address one or more of the functional areas of interest to NIMA and the Imagery and Geospatial Community (IGC) including, but not limited to, the following:

(a) Atmospheric characterization / compensation / correction;

(b) Exploitation algorithms for MSI/HSI data (detection, identification, etc.);

(c) MSI/HSI data/product visualization tools;

(d) MSI/HSI scene/image simulation tools;

(e) Spectral vector analysis tools;

(f) Spectral signatures (libraries, endmember extraction tools, matching tools, optical processing, etc.);

(g) Spectral phenomenology, such as Atmospheric Removal Program (ATREM);

(h) MSI/HSI data compression algorithms;

(i) Multi-sensor fusion tools;

(j) Tools or environments to automate MSI/HSI algorithms;

(k) Training;

(l) Rectification/registration tools for MSI/HSI data and products.

Tools and technologies can be applicable to the reflective region or the emissive region of the spectrum, or both. Tools should address a variety of intelligence and geospatial applications and needs, as well as other performance issues. Intelligence needs can include, but are not limited to: enhanced target detection and recognition (counter camouflage, concealment, and deception), environmental monitoring, mine detection, change detection, pre- and post-disaster assessment, broad area studies, mission planning, bomb damage assessment (BDA). Geospatial applications and needs can include, but are not limited to: cultural, vegetation, soils, and hydrographic feature extraction extraction (bathymetry, underwater hazards, beach characterization, water clarity, etc.), attribution, and mapping (including nautical and aeronautical charting).

The assessment will emphasize how well the tools or technologies support the Exploitation Workflow Process (EWP) which will be defined during the Pathfinder process. The EWP includes all the steps involved from the time raw imagery (from a collection system or spectral library) becomes available at the exploitation site until a final product (imagery intelligence or geospatial data product) is completed, filed locally, and ready for delivery to and exploitation by users. Pathfinder is looking for tools to support, add value, improve, or expedite the EWP, including but not limited to: automatic or assisted means to extract data, error analysis and/or the quantification of confidence and spatial/thematic accuracy in the finished product, mitigation of false positive responses, optimization of tool or technology/processing selected within the workflow, and replication of results.

THE RFI: NIMA ATTM is interested in finding DEVELOPERS or VENDORS of off-the-shelf (commercial or government-owned) tools or technologies, from low- to high-end, "beta or better" (6.3/6.4), who are experienced in the commercial MSI/HSI arena. Additionally, the Pathfinder team will assess HSI tools that may be "pre-beta" (6.1/6.2) in order to help guide development in this emerging area. Based upon the responses to this RFI, the Pf 02 Team will select the MSI/HSI exploitation tools and systems for assessment. If you or your organization is involved in the area of MSI/HSI technologies, please submit the following information:

1) The name of a point of contact who is familiar with your organization's activities, your organization's name, address, phone/fax numbers, and e-mail address.

2) A description of past, present, and planned capabilities, activities, and programs in MSI/HSI.

3) Candidate Y2K-compliant tools or systems you produce or use, and the types of hardware and software (including versions) that are part of, or used in conjunction with, those tools or systems.

4) Description of security services available with the candidate tools and systems. NIMA's systems may require substantial security services in order to convert and host tools on unclassified and classified networks.

5) Describe import/export capabilities from various sources: imagery from all sources; spectral libraries from government and commercial sources; data types (NITF 2.0/2.1 and GeoTIFF) and file formats supported (raster, vector, matrix, etc.); sensor and library calibration, positional, and characterization parameters required, as well as ancillary atmospheric correction information data required.

6) Description of hardware and software requirements, including operating systems (preferred, but not limited to, Windows 2000, NT, SGI, and various UNIX versions); software standards, such as compatibility with standard image/mapping data formats and sources; hardware (to include CPU speed, hard disk memory), on-board memory, common processing environment (other applications or processes required to be running), video requirements; approximate benchmark timing information; data storage media.

7) Description of compliance with the Windows NT and various UNIX versions of the Defense Information Infrastructure/Common Operating Environment (DII/COE) (for more information, refer to the DII/COE Homepage at Vendors and developers with tools/systems that are not yet compliant with DII/COE should cite what actions, if any, are under way to make them compliant. In the case of systems that are not compliant with DII/COE, vendors are asked to document their interest in bringing such systems into eventual compliance.

8) Your interest in being considered in NIMA's assessment of MSI/HSI exploitation tools. Please send your responses (not more than 6 pages, please) to Ms. Sylvia Spriestersbach and Mr. Chris Diez by February 9, 2001.

(NOTE: Responses will be accepted after this date; however, the responses received prior to the 9th will be used to guide many of the processes and selection criteria needed to perform the assessments.)

Submit via e-mail to and ; via fax to (202) 863-6150, or by mail to Pathfinder 2002,ATTN: Ms. Sylvia Spriestersbach, National Imagery and Mapping Agency, NIMA/ATTM, Mail Stop N-06, Washington Navy Yard, Building 213, 1200 First Street, S.E., Washington, D.C. 20303-0001.

BACKGROUND: NIMA's mission is to provide relevant and timely imagery, imagery intelligence, and geospatial products and services to NIMA customers. The Pathfinder process identifies, selects, and assesses key technologies and tools for possible insertion into the NIMA operational environment, and potentially other government and military agencies. A community-wide Kick-off Conference will be held on 22 February 2001, at the Booz Allen & Hamilton Conference Center, to outline details of the Pathfinder Process and the Pathfinder 2002 MSI/HSI Exploitation Tools Project. The Pathfinder assessment will include two parts: a functional assessment and a technical assessment. The first assessment is a functional assessment of all submitted tools by potential users, based on a 20-minute presentation and on materials submitted by each participating vendor/developer. The second assessment is a half-day technical assessment of selected tools by potential users and Human Computer Interaction (HCI) experts, based on a hands-on demonstration of tool/system capabilities, possibly using one or more data sets provided by NIMA. Vendors may be requested to provide their own data sets that include a common set of parameters defined by NIMA. The Pf 2002 team may respond with a questionnaire to ascertain additional information about your tools/systems; information from the questionnaire will be used during the various assessments described above. This is an open and participative process. Should you determine that sharing of some information is not desired, please clearly mark or indicate the specific portions, and we will honor your request and protect that data. This process is being conducted as described in SD-2, "Buying Commercial & Non-developmental Items: A Handbook," April 1996. SD-2 can be found in the DoD Discretionary Documents of the Reference Library of the Defense Acquisition Deskbook at "". Procurement of tools, however, is not part of the Pathfinder process. However, NIMA will use the results to further test and evaluate the most versatile and promising tools and technologies in follow-on projects. Thank you for your interest and participation.

LINKURL: Please See Block 17 LINKDESC: Please See Block 17 EMAILADD: EMAILDESC: Please click here to contact the NIMA Technical POC via e-mail CITE: (W-008 SN50A3I5)