|Materials and Manufacturing Capabilities for Sustaining Defense SystemsSummary of a Workshop
The Standing Committee on Defense Materials Manufacturing and Infrastructure (DMMI) conducted a workshop on July 23-24, 2012, to share information and gather perspectives on issues concerning Materials and Manufacturing Capabilities for Sustaining Defense Systems. This workshop, held at the headquarters building of the National Academies, 2101 Constitution Avenue N.W., Washington D.C., was conducted according to the procedures of the National Research Council (NRC) for a convening activity. That is, all workshop participants—including presenters, members of the DMMI standing committee, Reliance 21, invited guests, and visitors—spoke as individuals, and no overall findings, conclusions, or recommendations were developed during or as a result of the workshop. All statements and views summarized in this publication are attributable only to those individuals who expressed them. It is worth noting that the sponsor, Reliance 21, is a Department of Defense group of professionals that was established to enable the DOD science and technology (S&T) community to work together to enhance Defense S&T programs, eliminate unwarranted duplication, and strengthen cooperation among the military services and other DOD agencies.
The DMMI standing committee named a workshop planning group to develop the workshop agenda and decide on invited guests and presenters, in accordance with the statement of task approved by the Governing Board of the NRC. The planning group also consulted with the Reliance 21 materials and processing community of interest.
The presentations and discussions during the workshop are summarized sequentially in the main part of this report. As an aid to readers, nine themes have been identified by the author that recurred in multiple presentations and discussions. Materials and Manufacturing Capabilities for Sustaining Defense Systems: Summary of a Workshop explains these nine themes and summarizes the two day workshop.
|Human Performance ModificationReview of Worldwide Research with a View to the Future
The development of technologies to modify natural human physical and cognitive performance is one of increasing interest and concern, especially among military services that may be called on to defeat foreign powers with enhanced warfighter capabilities. Human performance modification (HPM) is a general term that can encompass actions ranging from the use of "natural" materials, such as caffeine or khat as a stimulant, to the application of nanotechnology as a drug delivery mechanism or in an invasive brain implant. Although the literature on HPM typically addresses methods that enhance performance, another possible focus is methods that degrade performance or negatively affect a military force's ability to fight.
Advances in medicine, biology, electronics, and computation have enabled an increasingly sophisticated ability to modify the human body, and such innovations will undoubtedly be adopted by military forces, with potential consequences for both sides of the battle lines. Although some innovations may be developed for purely military applications, they are increasingly unlikely to remain exclusively in that sphere because of the globalization and internationalization of the commercial research base.
Based on its review of the literature, the presentations it received and on its own expertise, the Committee on Assessing Foreign Technology Development in Human Performance Modification chose to focus on three general areas of HPM: human cognitive modification as a computational problem, human performance modification as a biological problem, and human performance modification as a function of the brain-computer interface. Human Performance Modification: Review of Worldwide Research with a View to the Future summarizes these findings.
|Assuring the U.S. Department of Defense a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce
The ability of the nation's military to prevail during future conflicts, and to fulfill its humanitarian and other missions, depends on continued advances in the nation's technology base. A workforce with robust Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) capabilities is critical to sustaining U.S. preeminence. Today, however, the STEM activities of the Department of Defense (DOD) are a small and diminishing part of the nation's overall science and engineering enterprise.
Assuring the U.S. Department of Defense a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce presents five principal recommendations for attracting, retaining, and managing highly qualified STEM talent within the department based on an examination of the current STEM workforce of DOD and the defense industrial base. As outlined in the report, DOD should focus its investments to ensure that STEM competencies in all potentially critical, emerging topical areas are maintained at least at a basic level within the department and its industrial and university bases.
|Disposal Options for the Rocket Motors From Nerve Agent Rockets Stored at Blue Grass Army Depot
The Blue Grass Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant (BGCAPP) is under construction near Richmond, Kentucky, two dispose of one of the two remaining stockpiles of chemical munitions in the United States. The stockpile that BGCAPP will dispose of is stored at the Blue Grass Army Depot (BGAD). BGCAPP is a tenant activity on BGAD.
The stockpile stored at BGAD consists of mustard agent loaded in projectiles, and the nerve agents GB and VX loaded into projectiles and M55 rockets. BGCAPP will process the rockets by cutting them, still in their shipping and firing tube (SFT), between the warhead and motor sections of the rocket. The warhead will be processed through BGCAPP. The separated rocket motors that have been monitored for chemical agent and cleared for transportation outside of BGCAPP, the subject of this report, will be disposed of outside of BGCAPP. Any motors found to be contaminated with chemical agent will be processed through BGCAPP and are not addressed in this report.
Disposal Options for the Rocket Motors From Nerve Agent Rockets Stored at Blue Grass Army Depot addresses safety in handling the separated rocket motors with special attention to the electrical ignition system, the need for adequate storage space for the motors in order to maintain the planned disposal rate at BGCAPP, thermal and chemical disposal technologies, and on-site and off-site disposal options. On-site is defined as disposal on BGAD, and off-site is defined as disposal by a commercial or government facility outside of BGAD.
|Assessment of Agent Monitoring Strategies for the Blue Grass and Pueblo Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plants
January 2012 saw the completion of the U.S. Army's Chemical Materials Agency's (CMA's) task to destroy 90 percent of the nation's stockpile of chemical weapons. CMA completed destruction of the chemical agents and associated weapons deployed overseas, which were transported to Johnston Atoll, southwest of Hawaii, and demilitarized there. The remaining 10 percent of the nation's chemical weapons stockpile is stored at two continental U.S. depots, in Lexington, Kentucky, and Pueblo, Colorado. Their destruction has been assigned to a separate U.S. Army organization, the Assembled Chemical Weapons Alternatives (ACWA) Element.
ACWA is currently constructing the last two chemical weapons disposal facilities, the Pueblo and Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plants (denoted PCAPP and BGCAPP), with weapons destruction activities scheduled to start in 2015 and 2020, respectively. ACWA is charged with destroying the mustard agent stockpile at Pueblo and the nerve and mustard agent stockpile at Blue Grass without using the multiple incinerators and furnaces used at the five CMA demilitarization plants that dealt with assembled chemical weapons - munitions containing both chemical agents and explosive/propulsive components. The two ACWA demilitarization facilities are congressionally mandated to employ noncombustion-based chemical neutralization processes to destroy chemical agents.
In order to safely operate its disposal plants, CMA developed methods and procedures to monitor chemical agent contamination of both secondary waste materials and plant structural components. ACWA currently plans to adopt these methods and procedures for use at these facilities. The Assessment of Agent Monitoring Strategies for the Blue Grass and Pueblo Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plants report also develops and describes a half-dozen scenarios involving prospective ACWA secondary waste characterization, process equipment maintenance and changeover activities, and closure agent decontamination challenges, where direct, real-time agent contamination measurements on surfaces or in porous bulk materials might allow more efficient and possibly safer operations if suitable analytical technology is available and affordable.
|Making Sense of Ballistic Missile DefenseAn Assessment of Concepts and Systems for U.S. Boost-Phase Missile Defense in Comparison to Other Alternatives
The Committee on an Assessment of Concepts and Systems for U.S. Boost-Phase Missile Defense in Comparison to Other Alternatives set forth to provide an assessment of the feasibility, practicality, and affordability of U.S. boost-phase missile defense compared with that of the U.S. non-boost missile defense when countering short-, medium-, and intermediate-range ballistic missile threats from rogue states to deployed forces of the United States and its allies and defending the territory of the United States against limited ballistic missile attack.
To provide a context for this analysis of present and proposed U.S. boost-phase and non-boost missile defense concepts and systems, the committee considered the following to be the missions for ballistic missile defense (BMD): protecting of the U.S. homeland against nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction (WMD); or conventional ballistic missile attacks; protection of U.S. forces, including military bases, logistics, command and control facilities, and deployed forces, including military bases, logistics, and command and control facilities. They also considered deployed forces themselves in theaters of operation against ballistic missile attacks armed with WMD or conventional munitions, and protection of U.S. allies, partners, and host nations against ballistic-missile-delivered WMD and conventional weapons.
Consistent with U.S. policy and the congressional tasking, the committee conducted its analysis on the basis that it is not a mission of U.S. BMD systems to defend against large-scale deliberate nuclear attacks by Russia or China. Making Sense of Ballistic Missile Defense: An Assessment of Concepts and Systems for U.S. Boost-Phase Missile Defense in Comparison to Other Alternatives suggests that great care should be taken by the U.S. in ensuring that negotiations on space agreements not adversely impact missile defense effectiveness. This report also explains in further detail the findings of the committee, makes recommendations, and sets guidelines for the future of ballistic missile defense research.
|Capability Planning and Analysis to Optimize Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Investments
Intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities have expanded situation awareness for U.S. forces, provided for more precise combat effects, and enabled better decision making both during conflicts and in peacetime, and reliance on ISR capabilities is expected to increase in the future. ISR capabilities are critical to 3 of the 12 Service Core Functions of the U.S. Air Force: namely, Global Integrated ISR (GIISR) and the ISR components of Cyberspace Superiority and Space Superiority, and contribute to all others.
In response to a request from the Air Force for ISR and the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Science, Technology, and Engineering, the National Research Council formed the Committee on Examination of the Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) Capability Planning and Analysis (CP&A) Process. In this report, the committee reviews the current approach to the Air Force corporate planning and programming process for ISR capability generation; examines carious analytical methods, processes, and models for large-scale, complex domains like ISR; and identifies the best practices for the Air Force.
In Capability Planning and Analysis to Optimize Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Investments, the current approach is analyzed and the best practices for the Air Force corporate planning and programming processed for ISR are recommended. This report also recommends improvements and changes to existing analytical tools, methods, roles and responsibilities, and organization and management that would be required to ensure the Air Force corporate planning and programming process for ISR is successful in addressing all Joint, National, and Coalition partner's needs.
|Remediation of Buried Chemical Warfare Materiel
As the result of disposal practices from the early to mid-twentieth century, approximately 250 sites in 40 states, the District of Columbia, and 3 territories are known or suspected to have buried chemical warfare materiel (CWM). Much of this CWM is likely to occur in the form of small finds that necessitate the continuation of the Army's capability to transport treatment systems to disposal locations for destruction. Of greatest concern for the future are sites in residential areas and large sites on legacy military installations.
The Army mission regarding the remediation of recovered chemical warfare materiel (RCWM) is turning into a program much larger than the existing munition and hazardous substance cleanup programs. The Army asked the Nation Research Council (NRC) to examine this evolving mission in part because this change is significant and becoming even more prominent as the stockpile destruction is nearing completion. One focus in this report is the current and future status of the Non-Stockpile Chemical Material Project (NSCMP), which now plays a central role in the remediation of recovered chemical warfare materiel and which reports to the Chemical Materials Agency.
Remediation of Buried Chemical Warfare Materiel also reviews current supporting technologies for cleanup of CWM sites and surveys organizations involved with remediation of suspected CWM disposal sites to determine current practices and coordination. In this report, potential deficiencies in operational areas based on the review of current supporting technologies for cleanup of CWM sites and develop options for targeted research and development efforts to mitigate potential problem areas are identified.
|An Interim Report on Assuring DoD a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce
An Interim Report on Assuring DoD a Strong Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Workforce is a report on the science, technology, mathematics, and engineering (STEM) workforce of the Department of Defense (DOD) and the U.S. defense industrial base is part of an 18-month study to assess the STEM capabilities that the DOD will need in order to meet its goals, objectives, and priorities. This study also assesses whether the current DOD workforce and strategy will meet those needs; and indentifies and evaluates options and recommends strategies that the department could use to help meet its future STEM needs. This study was undertaken by the National Academy of Engineering and the National Research Council.
This report was issued for the purpose of assisting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering with its fiscal year 2012 planning process and with laying the groundwork for future years. Earlier in the project, the Committee on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Workforce Needs for the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Defense Industrial Base convened a workshop on August 1 and 2, 2011, in Rosslyn, Virginia. This workshop met for the purpose of gathering a broad range of views from the public sector and the private sector. This includes major defense contractors, and from nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), all of which are stakeholders in the future STEM workforce. At the conclusion of this study, a final report will be released.
|Testing of Body Armor MaterialsPhase III
In 2009, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released the report Warfighter Support: Independent Expert Assessment of Army Body Armor Test Results and Procedures Needed Before Fielding, which commented on the conduct of the test procedures governing acceptance of body armor vest-plate inserts worn by military service members. This GAO report, as well as other observations, led the Department of Defense Director, Operational Test & Evaluation, to request that the National Research Council (NRC) Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences conduct a three-phase study to investigate issues related to the testing of body armor materials for use by the U.S. Army and other military departments. Phase I and II resulted in two NRC letter reports: one in 2009 and one in 2010. This report is Phase III in the study.
Testing of Body Armor Materials: Phase III provides a roadmap to reduce the variability of clay processes and shows how to migrate from clay to future solutions, as well as considers the use of statistics to permit a more scientific determination of sample sizes to be used in body armor testing. This report also develops ideas for revising or replacing the Prather study methodology, as well as reviews comments on methodologies and technical approaches to military helmet testing. Testing of Body Armor Materials: Phase III also considers the possibility of combining various national body armor testing standards.
|Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders
For the past decade, the U.S. Marine Corps and its sister services have been engaged in what has been termed "hybrid warfare," which ranges from active combat to civilian support. Hybrid warfare typically occurs in environments where all modes of war are employed, such as conventional weapons, irregular tactics, terrorism, disruptive technologies, and criminality to destabilize an existing order.
In August 2010, the National Research Council established the Committee on Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders to produce Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders. This report examines the operational environment, existing abilities, and gap to include data, technology, skill sets, training, and measures of effectiveness for small unit leaders in conducting enhanced company operations (ECOs) in hybrid engagement, complex environments. Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders also determines how to understand the decision making calculus and indicators of adversaries.
Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders recommends operational and technical approaches for improving the decision making abilities of small unit leaders, including any acquisition and experimentation efforts that can be undertaken by the Marine Corps and/or by other stakeholders aimed specifically at improving the decision making of small unit leaders. This report recommends ways to ease the burden on small unit leaders and to better prepare the small unit leader for success. Improving the Decision Making Abilities of Small Unit Leaders also indentifies a responsible organization to ensure that training and education programs are properly developed, staffed, operated, evaluated, and expanded.