Capability-Based Acquisition in the Missile Defense Agency: Independent Research Project
INDUSTRIAL COLL OF THE ARMED FORCES WASHINGTON DC
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Historically, the DOD acquisition process requires more than 10 years to develop and field a new weapon system. It also often produces systems with capabilities that are no longer relevant, and that rely on technology that is obsolete by the time they are fielded. Part of the reason for this seems to a tendency to develop systems that rely on new, unproven technology and a process that establishes specific performance requirements too early in the program cycle. These requirements are then incorporated into an Operational Requirements Document ORD and System Specification spec, which become the focus of the program and the criteria for success. Not surprisingly, the technologies often prove to be more difficult to develop than anticipated, and changes in the world environment often makes many of the requirements irrelevant by the time the system goes into production. Due to the mandate of meeting the thresholds and goals in the System Specification, large amounts of effort are expended on the technology needed to meet the spec, and areas overlooked by the spec are not pursued, even when advances in technology may reduce cost or improve capability. Capability-based acquisition is, at least in part, an attempt to avoid these problems and produce systems with relevant capability and current technology.
- Military Forces and Organizations
- Guided Missiles