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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

‘REQUIRED’ READING

‘REQUIRED’ READING

‘Required’ Reading: Latest Army AL&T magazine online By Steve Stark FORT BELVOIR, Va. (June 30, 2015) — The newest edition of Army AL&T magazine is all about requirements and in keeping with the theme, this “required” reading is now available online. In Army acquisition, everything begins with requirements, with all facets of a system or service examined through the lens of doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership and education, personnel, and facilities—DOTMLPF—which is why Army AL&T spoke with Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins, director of the TRADOC’s Army Capabilities Integration Center Requirements Integration Directorate. Read how ARCIC is working to bring all stakeholders into the development of requirements in “From Concept […]

Clause For Effect

Clause For Effect

ARDEC and JMC aim to simplify procurement and reduce cost of conventional ammo with new contract clause   By Mr. Steve Stark   The U.S. Army Armament, Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) and the Joint Munitions Command (JMC) in the next few months will begin a pilot of a contract clause that should allow for a uniform, integrated approach to help conventional ammunition suppliers comply with acceptance inspection equipment (AIE) requirements while encouraging them to follow commercial best practices. “Inspection is essential to any manufacturing system. It’s the means of identifying and rejecting nonconformities, thus ensuring that only conforming product gets to the warfighter,” said Jennifer Herrera, a quality […]

Evolving Innovation

Evolving Innovation

A new look at fostering cutting-edge thinking in Army science and technology   By Lt. Col. Joel Dillon, Dr. Jason Augustyn, Ms. Julia Kim and Mr. Dominic Ju   Science and technology (S&T) innovation is an uncertain road, with “failure” often a step on the path to a breakthrough. However, in a resource-constrained environment, planners must make the smartest possible investments of taxpayer money in S&T programs, balancing risk with the potential for transformational new capabilities. A good place to start striking this balance is at the “fuzzy front end” of innovation, the initial period of exploration preceding the development of new materiel solutions. For many years, the acquisition community […]

Getting a Fix on the Future

Getting a Fix on the Future

Even as it closes the books on the longest war in U.S. history, the Army must plan, in difficult circumstances, for what is to come   By Ms. Margaret C. Roth   As the Army draws down to what could be its smallest size in nearly three-quarters of a century, the focus is squarely on the future. So, what does the Army need to do today to get where it wants to be 30 years from now? In a word: Plan. But it’s more complicated than it sounds. A year and a half ago, the Army initiated a new strategic modernization planning process that combines a detailed analysis of investments […]