Network After Next

Network After Next

By Brig. Gen. Daniel P. Hughes, Col. Mark Elliott and Col. John Zavarelli   Just weeks after deploying to Afghanistan last summer, the commanders and Soldiers of the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division (4-10 MTN) christened the Army’s new tactical communications network their “digital guardian angel.” Capability Set (CS) 13 became critical to their daily operations in Afghanistan, enabling them to cover more ground safely and providing a considerable tactical advantage. Their experience shows why the Army pushed so hard over the past two years to deliver CS 13, our first integrated package of communication systems that supports mission command on-the-move and brings the Soldier into the network. […]

What Does It Mean to Be “a Defense Acquisition Professional”?

What Does It Mean to Be “a Defense Acquisition Professional”?

From the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall   One of the seven goals of Better Buying Power 2.0 is to improve the professionalism of the total acquisition workforce. I thought it might be useful to provide some specificity about what I have in mind when I talk about professionalism. The following is based on various experiences over my career, including some formal education on the nature of professionalism in the military, including at venues like West Point and the Army War College, in my on-the-job training in program management and systems engineering by various Air Force colonels in the Ballistic Missile Office, and by […]

THE WRITE STUFF: Army AL&T Magazine Announces Annual ALTies Winners

THE WRITE STUFF: Army AL&T Magazine Announces Annual ALTies Winners

  By Steve Stark   FORT BELVOIR, Va. — The award-winning Army AL&T magazine announced the winners of its annual “ALTies” awards, celebrating the best article, commentary, graphic, ad and photograph from 2013. Editor-in-Chief Nelson McCouch III presented the awards here today, following Army AL&T magazine’s second annual writer’s workshop at the U.S. Army Acquisition Service Center (USAASC) headquarters. “Each issue of Army AL&T is a collaborative process, a team effort,” McCouch said. “Without our contributors, who help us continually raise the bar on quality, we would not have a magazine. But we have a great one that gets better with every issue.” Claire Heininger, editor/lead writer for Program Executive […]

Security Cooperation – A Case Study

Security Cooperation – A Case Study

By Lt. Col. Will McDonough, Robert Ucci, Bill Webber and Ted Greiner   As defense budgets and military force structure are reduced, the United States must once again examine ways to maintain our defense industrial base. While budgets may not allow for the procurement of new weapons for our own military at the rate many would like, there can be no question that we need to maintain the ability to ramp up for a future conflict at a time and a place that may be totally unpredictable. One very valuable tool for maintaining our domestic industrial base is to promote the sale of our defense materiel to friendly nations who […]

Unmanned vehicle demonstration showcases leap-ahead technology

Unmanned vehicle demonstration showcases leap-ahead technology

By Bruce J. Huffman, TARDEC Public Affairs   DETROIT ARSENAL, Mich. (March 21, 2014) — Working closely with Lockheed Martin and a conglomeration of Army technology, acquisition and user community stakeholders, the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center successfully demonstrated an unmanned military convoy Jan. 14 at Fort Hood, Texas. From a rooftop in the Fort Hood training area, military and industry VIPs saw firsthand how the Autonomous Mobility Appliqué System, or AMAS, enabled two driverless Palletized Loading System prime movers and an M915 tractor trailer truck to seamlessly interact with a manned Humvee gun truck escort. The convoy negotiated oncoming traffic, followed rules of the road, […]

Tobyhanna lands Gray Eagle Ground Control Station repairs

Tobyhanna lands Gray Eagle Ground Control Station repairs

By Justin Eimers   TOBYHANNA ARMY DEPOT, Pa. — The Army, Marine Corps, Air Force and Navy have named Tobyhanna the Depot Source of Repair (DSOR) for the Gray Eagle (MQ-1C) Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) Ground Control Stations (GCSs). The decision by the four services’ Maintenance Interservice Support Management Offices recognizes the depot as the installation best suited for these repairs. “Through the acquisition process, there is a lot of assessment that takes place, including core logistics analyses that look at our capabilities,” said Nick Caprioli, chief of the Business Development Division. “Tobyhanna was selected based on infrastructure, training and technical expertise for this type of work.” Repair work will […]

Securing the Base

Securing the Base

DOD policymakers have complex array of tools to help protect industrial capabilities   By Mr. Kris Osborn   As DOD grapples with multiple fiscal challenges, the Army and the Pentagon are stepping up efforts to sustain and preserve the health of the U.S. defense industrial base (IB) by assessing vendor capabilities, watching for mergers and acquisitions, and analyzing the supply chain for critical capabilities. In its 2013 report to Congress on the health of the defense IB, the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Manufacturing and Industrial Base Policy (MIBP) notes DOD’s tightening fiscal constraints and widespread concern about their effects on the IB, but says only […]

Education key for contracting certification

Education key for contracting certification

By Daniel P. Elkins, Mission and Installation Contracting Command Public Affairs Office   JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (March 12, 2014) — Entering the Army Acquisition Corps necessitates enlisted Soldiers to meet specific education and certification requirements outlined in federal statutes in order to execute contracts on behalf of the government and maintain readiness. Soldiers in the 51C military occupational specialty attached to the Mission and Installation Contracting Command arrive having completed training on the basic fundamentals of contracting before promptly entering a carefully mapped training regimen under the observant direction of a mentor. Helping steer their development is the MICC 51C Contingency Contracting Officer Rotational Training Plan […]

Acquisition Education and Training Corner

Acquisition Education and Training Corner

Education and training opportunities   By USAASC Acquisition, Education and Training Branch   2014 Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP): Applications will be accepted starting March 12- April 21. Following a review board, selections will be announced the week of May 19, 2014. Acceptance requires a three-year civilian service agreement (CSA). Acceptance to the program one year does not guarantee acceptance in subsequent years. Additional information and application instructions are available on the SLRP webpage. Defense Acquisition University-Senior Service College Fellowship (DAU-SSCF): The announcement opened Jan. 29 and closes April 2. This Military Education Level One (MEL-1) Army-approved SSCF provides SSC equivalency at your local commuting area if you live in […]

‘Armed with Science’ pilot episode features defense breakthroughs

‘Armed with Science’ pilot episode features defense breakthroughs

By U.S. Army Research Laboratory public affairs   ADELPHI, Md. (March 10, 2014) — The Pentagon Channel’s pilot episode of Armed with Science is airing at 9 a.m., 1 p.m., and 5 p.m. (ET), today, and will delve into Army Research Laboratory and Naval Research Laboratory science that shapes the future of defense. The show takes viewers inside the minds of military scientists who improve national defense with infrared imaging, robotic satellite repair and novel weapons design during its debut. Defense producers from the Defense Media Activity conceptualized the program to shed light on the “seed corn of science and technology,” or basic and applied science. “‘Armed with Science’ tells […]