By Palmer Pinckney II, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Center Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The 2018 Dr. Delores M. Etter, Top Scientists and Engineers Award was presented on June 29 to five members of Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Engineering and Expeditionary Warfare Command (EXWC).
In a letter received on May 30 from the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition), Mr. James F. Geurts, sent congratulations to Mr. Joshua Henson, Mr. David Wilkinson, Mr. James Meza, Mr. Ryan Seltzer and Dr. Kimo Zaiger for winning the award for outstanding contributions in planning, developing technology, design, procurement, system integration and testing of the Seismo-Hydroacoustic Data Acquisition System (SHDAS).
The annual science and engineering awards program is named for Etter, former United States Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Science and Technology and Assistant Secretary of the Navy for research, science and technology. The award, established in 2006, recognizes excellence of the Department of the Navy's highest performing scientists and engineers who make significant contributions in their fields to the Navy, Sailors, Marines and the future of the Fleet. Recipients are nominated by their respective commands and evaluated based upon the technical or scientific merit and the operational impact of the individual or team's accomplishment.
"It was certainly a humbling moment receiving the notification letter from Mr. Guertz, assistant secretary of the Navy, congratulating our team on the win after all of the hard work over the past few years," Ryan Seltzer, SHDAS team member remarked. "We could not have completed this project without the hard work and enthusiastic dedication of the entire of the SHDAS team."
SHDAS provides the Air Force Technical Applications Center (AFTAC) with enhanced spatial coverage to detect nuclear detonations in the eastern Mediterranean region in support of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) and the treaty's mission to end all nuclear explosions.
The SHDAS installation was the culmination of five years of planning, technology development, design, procurement, system integration and testing in collaboration with contractors from around the world. Dr. Kimo Zaiger explained, "This project presented significant engineering, logistical and acquisition hurdles and fully encompassed the complete cycle of applied engineering systems development from initial concept component design to applied research and development and the test and evaluation of state-of-the-art components at national test sites". It is the largest and most complex project ever undertaken by NAVFAC EXWC's Ocean Facilities Department and will have a lasting impact on international security.
"The purpose of the Etter Award is to recognize technical excellence and achievement value. This highly complex research and development effort was especially challenging and would have failed if not for the leadership and contributions of the team, said Joshua Henson, SHADAS team member. "This recognition is a reflection of the team's hard work, dedication and technical prowess."
NAVFAC EXWC is a command of more than 1,100 dedicated federal employees, contractors, and military personnel who provide specialized facilities engineering, technology solutions and life-cycle management of expeditionary equipment to the Navy, Marine Corps, federal agencies and other Department of Defense supported commands.