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book coverDevelopment Planning: A Strategic Approach to Future Air Force Capabilities   (AFSB)
Released 0000-00-00

The development and application of technology has been an essential part of U.S. airpower, leading to a century of air supremacy. But that developmental path has rarely been straight, and it has never been smooth. Only the extraordinary efforts of exceptional leadership - in the Air Forces and the wider Department of Defense, in science and in industry - have made the triumphs of military airpower possible. Development Planning provides recommendations to improve development planning for near-term acquisition projects, concepts not quite ready for acquisition, corporate strategic plans, and training of acquisition personnel. This report reviews past uses of development planning by the Air Force, and offers an organizational construct that will help the Air Force across its core functions. Developmental planning, used properly by experienced practitioners, can provide the Air Force leadership with a tool to answer the critical question, Over the next 20 years in 5-year increments, what capability gaps will the Air Force have that must be filled? Development planning will also provide for development of the workforce skills needed to think strategically and to defectively define and close the capability gap. This report describes what development planning could be and should be for the Air Force.

book coverReview of Specialized Degree-Granting Graduate Programs of the Department of Defense in STEM and Management  
Released 2014-06-30

The United States military is arguably the most intensely technological, complex enterprise in existence. When compared to the gross domestic products of other countries, the Department of Defense (DoD) budget ranks above all but about 20 nations. If viewed as a company, it would be the largest globally with the most employees. Major investments in weapons systems using advanced technologies provide an advantage over competing systems. Each weapon, platform, vehicle, and person in an operating force is a node in one or more advanced networks that provide the ability to rapidly form a coherent force from a large number of broadly distributed elements. DoD's ability to create and operate forces of this nature demands a competent understanding by its workforce of the composition, acquisition, and employment of its technology-enabled forces. Review of Specialized Degree-Granting Graduate Programs of the Department of Defense in STEM and Management focuses on the graduate science, technology, engineering, mathematics and management (STEM+M) education issues of the Air Force, Navy, and Marines. This report assesses the cost, benefits, and organizational placement of DoD institutions that grant degrees in STEM+M and evaluates alternative ways - for example, civilian institutions and distance learning - to ensure adequate numbers and high-quality education outcomes for DoD personnel.

Report in Brief (PDF)
book coverReview of Department of Defense Test Protocols for Combat Helmets   (BAST)
Released 2014-03-31

Combat helmets have evolved considerably over the years from those used in World War I to today's Advanced Combat Helmet. One of the key advances was the development of aramid fibers in the 1960s, which led to today's Kevlar-based helmets. The Department of Defense is continuing to invest in research to improve helmet performance, through better design and materials as well as better manufacturing processes. Review of the Department of Defense Test Protocols for Combat Helmets considers the technical issues relating to test protocols for military combat helmets. At the request of the DOD Director of Operational Test and Evaluation, this report evaluates the adequacy of the Advanced Combat Helmet test protocol for both first article testing and lot acceptance testing, including its use of the metrics of probability of no penetration and the upper tolerance limit (used to evaluate backface deformation). The report evaluates appropriate use of statistical techniques in gathering data; adequacy of current helmet testing procedures; procedures for the conduct of additional analysis of penetration and backface deformation data; and scope of characterization testing relative to the benefit of the information obtained.

book coverU.S. Naval Forces' Capabilities for Responding to Small Vessel Threats: Abbreviated Version of a Classified Report   (NSB)
Released 2014-02-12

At the request of the former Chief of Naval Operations, the National Research Council appointed an expert committee to examine U.S. Naval Forces' capabilities for responding to the potential exploitation of small vessels by adversaries. The Department of the Navy determined that the report prepared by the committee is classified in its entirety under Executive Order 13526 and therefore cannot be made available to the public. This abbreviated report provides background information on the full report and the committee that prepared it.