CS Wins USAF Kessel Run Contract

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Reston, Va. — March 3, 2020 — Concept Solutions, LLC (CS) is proud to announce its selection as a prime contractor on the U.S. Air Force’s Kessel Run project, an exciting and prestigious effort aimed at revolutionizing how the military branch deploys software in support of America’s warfighters.

“This is the hottest software engineering contract in the country right now,” said CS Executive VP & COO John Krahulec, referring not just to the platforms Kessel Run will support, but to the culture shift it represents both inside and outside the military.

Following the Oct. 9, 2019 award, CS joins the USAF and other tech companies at the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab in Boston, MA, which is managed by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s (AFLCMC) Battle Management Directorate at Hanscom Air Force Base (AFB). There, civilian contractors will have the honor of working alongside the USAF’s best and brightest to modernize the legacy data support systems of the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter.

At Kessel Run, the USAF has adopted modern software engineering principles more often ascribed to Silicon Valley, including: Agile, the Twelve-Factor methodology, Extreme Programming (XP) and Test Driven Development (TDD.) Small teams will work on a secure, rapid-prototype-friendly Platform-as-a Service (PaaS) provided by Pivotal Labs, unencumbered by the need to support their own development infrastructures. Kessel Run will deploy a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) as cloud-native microservices, application programming interfaces (APIs) and modern user interfaces at rates of three to four releases per day, refactoring legacy Air Force codebases bit by bit rather than forcing users to wait months for quarterly release cycles.

In other words, Kessel Run hopes to overcome the cumbersome U.S. Defense contracting processes that had kept critical military systems effectively stuck in the 1990s. Perhaps its first and most well-known success was in modernizing the USAF’s method for planning aerial tanker refueling operations (then accomplished using whiteboards, magnets, Excel spreadsheets and a VBScript) with a cutting-edge application called JIGSAW that did the job in a fraction of the time and “saved $250,000 in the first week” following its deployment, according to Krahulec.

About Concept Solutions, LLC

Founded in 1999, Concept Solutions, LLC, headquartered in Northern Virginia, is a management and technology consulting company committed to providing strategic solutions enabling organizations to operate more efficiently. At Concept Solutions, we create and support Mission-Critical solutions that keep our country safe, in the areas of Aerospace, Defense, Law Enforcement, Finance and Weather. We are experts in delivering innovative solutions through information technology, engineering and management. Our business conforms to Agile, Scrum, SEI-CMMI ML3, ISO 9001, ISO 27001 and ISO 20000-1 quality standards.