Been There, Done That: Strategic Acquisition

Been There, Done That: Strategic Acquisition

Does DOD set PMs up for failure with impossibly complex mega-programs built on immature technology? After a career in uniform supporting Army acquisition followed by a second career teaching acquisition, a former PM takes a final pulse check and outlines four best practices for keeping programs big and small on track. (The fourth in a series of commentaries by former program managers on the faculty of the Naval Postgraduate School) by Michael W. Boudreau, Col., USA (Ret.) I am recently retired from government service, after 28 years in the Army and then 20 years of teaching at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS). I have been fortunate to see acquisition from […]

A New Way of Thinking

A New Way of Thinking

The Ottawa Treaty banning ‘dumb’ landmines caused a major capability gap in terrain shaping, area access and area denial, but it also created a massive possibility for innovation—and teamwork between government and industry. Now, ARCIC, PEO Ammunition and industry are working together to develop a capability that will go far beyond dumb. by Mr. Steve Stark The Gator Landmine Replacement (GLMR) program is, in many ways, emblematic of the kinds of tough but necessary technical challenges that the Army and DOD need to tackle in the coming years as they develop requirements for innovative new battlefield capabilities with strategic consideration for their long-term use and ultimate disposal—in short, the entire […]

Army researcher shares international partnership experiences

Army researcher shares international partnership experiences

by Joyce M. Conant, ARL Public Affairs ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — Dr. Mark Griep, a materials engineer working in the nano/bionano materials field at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, recently returned from a one-year tour working at the Agency for Defense Development in Daejeon, Republic of Korea. The assignment was part of the Department of Defense’s Engineer and Scientist Exchange Program or ESEP. The program promotes international cooperation through the exchange of defense scientists and engineers and affords opportunities for U.S. military and civilian engineer and scientist personnel to work on-site in allied and friendly countries. Currently, DOD has signed ESEP agreements with Australia, Canada, Chile, Egypt, France, Germany, […]

Vehicular Visions

Vehicular Visions

by Ms. Margaret C. Roth Time was, not long ago, that the only vision for a new Army combat vehicle was the Army’s. The service would develop a requirement detailing, down to thread size, the precise design and parts that should go into the vehicle. Industry had a choice: Take it or leave it. Invest and engage in building the vehicle, or don’t. In his 14 years at General Dynamics Land Systems (GDLS), “I saw requirements that were so specific that if you had three people with that requirements document in front of them and they built three vehicles, all three vehicles looked exactly alike,” said Mike Peck, GDLS’ director of […]

A Rare FIND

A Rare FIND

by Mr. Steve Stark and Ms. Margaret C. Roth With the establishment of the Forum for Innovative Novel Discovery (FIND) and the Capabilities Information Exchange (CIE), TRADOC has broken new ground, involving industry in creating innovative warfighting capabilities with a clear focus on future force development that will help both ARCIC and industry prioritize their efforts. “We do have an opportunity to engage industry partners earlier in the requirements process, and we’re moving to do that through the CIE and also through the FIND process,” said Maj. Gen. Robert M. “Bo” Dyess, ARCIC deputy director. The initial pilot for FIND brought six companies, chosen from 28 submissions responding to the […]

Recalibrating Requirements

Recalibrating Requirements

With the help of groundbreaking efforts by professional combat developers, requirements writers and program managers, ARCIC is looking to thaw the glacial pace of acquisition and speed capabilities to the warfighter as the Army warms to new ways of doing business, welcoming innovation and involving industry early and often. by Mr. Steve Stark and Ms. Margaret C. Roth The bad news is that the Army has a big problem: an entrenched process that cannot generate capability requirements fast enough to get the capability into Soldiers’ hands when they need it. The good news is that the Army is taking very seriously its efforts on innovation—innovation in the systems it procures […]

Army Extends PATRIOT Missile Tech-Improvement & Ponders New Upgrades

Army Extends PATRIOT Missile Tech-Improvement & Ponders New Upgrades

The PATRIOT Missle Segment Enhancement improves fire-control, radar and target tracking for the weapon, which can destroy enemy drones, aircraft and Theater Ballistic Missiles. By Kris Osborn, Scout Warrior The US Army and key allies around the world are now analyzing a radar and targeting upgrade to the Patriot missile able to increase the range of threats it can destroy — to include a wider range of drones, rotary wing aircraft, cruise missiles, extended range tactical ballistic missiles and high-speed aircraft. The Raytheon prototype upgrade includes the addition of new technology designed to keep pace with fast-emerging threats well above and beyond the tactical ballistic missiles for which the weapon […]

Faces of the Force: Anthony Dunaway

Faces of the Force: Anthony Dunaway

COMMAND/ORGANIZATION: 411th Contracting Support Brigade, U.S. Expeditionary Contracting Command TITLE: Government Purchase Card Branch chief; supervisory procurement analyst DAWIA CERTIFICATION: Level III in contracting; Level I in logistics and program management YEARS OF SERVICE IN WORKFORCE: 6 YEARS OF MILITARY SERVICE: 24 (U.S. Air Force, retired 2010) EDUCATION: MBA, University of Phoenix; B.S. in resource management, Troy University AWARDS: Commander’s Award for Civilian Service; Army Achievement Award (Civilian) The challenges and rewards of OCONUS work Ms. Susan L. Follett Anthony Dunaway is a busy guy. As Government Purchase Card (GPC) Branch chief and supervisory procurement analyst for the 411th Contracting Support Brigade in Yongsan Garrison, South Korea, he manages a […]

Systemizing COTS IT

Systemizing COTS IT

New initiative leverages the standard Army supply system to support COTS IT within the C4ISR domain. by Mr. Dan J. Quinn, Mr. Allen J. Hardison and Chief Warrant Officer 5 Ernest “Joe” Sylvester The Army’s standard supply system is the well­established backbone for requisitioning replacement parts and returning unserviceable items for repair.Yet, for commercial off-the-shelf information technology (COTS IT) Army units are directed to go outside the normal logistics system. This often requires units to contact the original equipment manufacturer or vendor to find out if the COTS IT component, such as a laptop, is still under warranty. In addition, every warranty differs. Units often must pay for add-ons such […]

No Barriers to Mission Command

No Barriers to Mission Command

By Kathryn Bailey, CERDEC CP&I ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND – Army engineers recently demonstrated network technology that will allow commanders to conduct mission command using multiple computing devices from brigade down to the edge. The Tactical Computing Environment, or TCE, developed by the U.S. Army Materiel Command’s Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center, or CERDEC, supports the Army’s Force 2025 and Beyond strategy, which provides the nation with a more expeditionary and agile force. “The military’s large, fixed ‘TOC Mahals’ have given way to smaller, more mobile command posts in an effort to support the Army’s push for expeditionary mission command,” said Cynthia Carpenter, CERDEC Command, Power, and Integration, or CP&I, […]