US Air Force opens Kessel Run Experimentation Lab in Boston

15 May 2018 (Last Updated May 15th, 2018 11:57)

The US Air Force (USAF) has officially opened the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab (KREL) to carry out the development of next-generation combat software.

US Air Force opens Kessel Run Experimentation Lab in Boston
Ribbon cutting for the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab opening in Boston, US. Credit: The USAF / Todd Maki.

The US Air Force (USAF) has officially opened the Kessel Run Experimentation Lab (KREL) to carry out the development of next-generation combat software.

The 90-seat KREL facility has been developed at WeWork’s shared innovation space in Boston’s North End, which usually serves as the home of constantly shifting start-up firms.

USAF Pentagon Information Technology Acquisition Process Development director major general Sarah Zabel said: “It’s one thing to say you’re going to do business differently, but look around and you can see that these airmen are learning.

“They’re building actual products and they’re writing the book on how to be combat engineers for the information age.”

The Kessel Run project is managed by the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s (AFLCMC) Battle Management Directorate at Hanscom Air Force Base (AFB) in Massachusetts, US.

AFLCMC is responsible for overseeing the sustainment and upgrade of the Air Operations Centre (AOC).

The KREL project initially focused on improving the AOC that oversees the majority of air combat operations in the Middle East.

“The project is currently expanding to the entire AOC Enterprise across the world and will include an eight-region cloud platform.”

The project is currently expanding to the entire AOC Enterprise across the world and will include an eight-region cloud platform and the stand-up of ten additional application teams by the end of this year.

USAF 15th Intelligence Squadron Langley AFB Virginia government civilian intelligence analyst Michael said: “We’re all consumers of this software.

“Sometimes your job is just to make a system that is 15 years old work for you today. Hopefully, we’re starting down the road of building better systems that we can go forward and use ourselves.”

In order to support and initiate Project Kessel Run, three Hanscom AFB contracting and programme specialists worked a series of Other Transaction Authorities, sole source contracts and small business contracts.