The US Navy has started construction on a new facility to provide classified research, development and operational testing for military weapon systems and cyber platforms.

The 10,000ft² Cyber Warfare Engineering Laboratory at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division (NSWCDD) will provide a single centre for software and hardware testing of military weapon systems, and cyber and network platforms.

NSWCDD commanding officer captain Casey Plew said that the new laboratory is “a testament to the awesome efforts of our workforce who will continue to effectively innovate, engineer, and integrate cyber warfare technical solutions into naval and joint systems across the warfighter domain by leveraging our competencies in warfare systems research, development, analysis, test and evaluation.”

The division’s acting technical director Darren Barnes stated that the facility will support the development and testing of cyber-resilient systems.

The building will serve as a centralised location to enable test personnel to meet cyber engineering and test objectives using interactive tools.

Barnes said: “Upon these grounds, our cyber leaders and specialists will collaborate with warfighters on weapon systems, platforms, and cyberinfrastructure.

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“They will leverage the upcoming and awesome cyber warfare engineering capabilities planned for this facility to develop and deploy the ways, means, protocols, and technologies to counter adversary cyber capabilities and identify and mitigate system and infrastructure risks to ensure mission success.”

The laboratory will support the navy and joint weapon systems, platforms, and cyberinfrastructure throughout their lifecycle.

It will help develop capabilities to tackle cyber risks to the systems.

Naval Sea Systems Command Enterprise Information Technology officer Scott St Pierre said: “The Cyber Warfare Engineering Lab is designed to support test and evaluation of the cybersecurity hardening of our warfighting capabilities.”