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U.S. Navy and Air Force seek to secure communications using blockchain technology

Fri, 07 Feb 2020, 06:37 am UTC

The U.S. Navy and the Air Force are looking to blockchain technology for securing communications.

The Department of Defense (DoD) has been considering leveraging the emerging technology for military purposes, particularly for securing communication by defense personnel. In a document filed last July, the DoD had revealed that tests were already underway to explore blockchain potential for transmitting communication in a secure manner.


Blockchain startup SIMBA Chain has announced that it has been awarded $9.5 million by the Naval Air Warfare Center – a San Diego-based research group of the U.S. Navy, to deploy a secure, blockchain-based messaging and transaction platform.

The Naval Air Warfare Center has given $9.5 million to the startup as part of the five-year Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase III contract. SIMBA said that this marks the first and one of the largest SBIR Phase III for blockchain.

“The platform will be up this year, with on going updates over the next 4 years,” Simba Chain CEO Joel Neidig told Cointelegraph.

Last year, the U.S. Air Force (USAF) partnered with SIMBA Chain for a manufacturing traceability project, dubbed as the “Blockchain Approach for Supply Chain Additive Manufacturing Parts” or BASECAMP. SIMBA Chain, which recently raised $1.5 million in seed funding, was tasked with developing a blockchain prototype to register and trace additive manufacturing components during their lifespan.

US Air Force taps Fluree

Blockchain firm Fluree has won a contract from the USAF to bring commercial best-in-class technologies to the Air Force and the DoD. It said that its data management platform was selected to provide the USAF with “secure, worldwide command-and-control communications using an encrypted, distributed, blockchain-backed graph database shared between partners.”

Founded in 2016, Fluree is a provider of a blockchain-backed data platform. Under the initial contract, it said, it will be teaming up with a department within the USAF to develop a platform that can facilitate Multi-domain Command and Control (MDC2) operations for the DoD and its global allied partners.

The firm will also conduct Voice of the Customer (VOC) events to identify specific customer needs and develop a plan for a prototype deployment of the Fluree data management platform to interoperate with the existing DoD systems.

“Fluree is uniquely suited to provide a distributed communication network that supports the interoperability and scalability requirements of both legacy and evolving government systems,” said Brian Platz, co-CEO of Fluree. “The Fluree solution leverages a blockchain architecture for security while supporting the storage of large data volumes following FAIR data principles in the integrated graph database. We’re excited about the opportunity to provide U.S. Air Force customers with an enterprise-grade data management platform.”

According to Computer World, Fluree is working with Air Force’s Small Business Innovation Research AFWERX technology innovation program to launch a blockchain proof of concept later this year.

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