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Assessment of the Information Sciences Directorate at the Army Research Office   (ARLTAB,LAB)
Released 2019-05-22 Forthcoming/Prepublication

This report summarizes the 2018 findings of the Panel on Review of Extramural Basic Research at the Army Research Laboratory, which reviewed the programs at the Army Research Office’s Information Sciences Directorate.

Metrics for Successful Supercritical Water Oxidation System Operation at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant   (BAST)
Released 2019-05-14

The supercritical water oxidation system at the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plant near Richmond, Kentucky is a secondary waste processing reactor that is an important unit in the overall function of the Blue Grass Chemical Agent Pilot Program. This system is designed to reactively destroy the primary products of agent hydrolysis, thus preventing chemical reformation of the original agents. This letter report develops metrics that can be used to determine the success or risks of failure of the system, focusing on safety, corrosion, performance, and reliability, availability, and maintainability.

Reproducibility and Replicability in Science   (CNSTAT,BBCSS,NRSB,CATS,BMSA,COSEMPUP,BRDI)
Released 2019-05-07 Forthcoming/Prepublication

One of the pathways by which the scientific community confirms the validity of a new scientific discovery is by repeating the research that produced it. When a scientific effort fails to independently confirm the computations or results of a previous study, some fear that it may be a symptom of a lack of rigor in science, while others argue that such an observed inconsistency can be an important precursor to new discovery. Concerns about reproducibility and replicability have been expressed in both scientific and popular media. As these concerns came to light, Congress requested that the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine conduct a study to assess the extent of issues related to reproducibility and replicability and to offer recommendations for improving rigor and transparency in scientific research. Reproducibility and Replicability in Science defines reproducibility and replicability and examines the factors that may lead to non-reproducibility and non-replicability in research. Unlike the typical expectation of reproducibility between two computations, expectations about replicability are more nuanced, and in some cases a lack of replicability can aid the process of scientific discovery. This report provides recommendations to researchers, academic institutions, journals, and funders on steps they can take to improve reproducibility and replicability in science.

Strategic Long-Term Participation by DoD in Its Manufacturing USA Institutes   (NMMB)
Released 2019-04-15 Forthcoming/Prepublication

To effectively mature and transition DoD manufacturing science and technology advances into production, DoD must have access to a robust and responsive U.S. industrial base which is often driven by advanced manufacturing technologies. The Manufacturing USA institutes are considered crucial and game-changing catalysts that are bringing together innovative ecosystems in various technology and market sectors critical to DoD and the nation. Since 2012, DoD has invested $600 million directly in its Manufacturing USA institutes with the understanding that the initial federal investment included (1) core funding and (2) one-time, start-up funding to establish the institutes within a period of 5 to 7 years. As the institutes now begin to reach year five, DoD is evaluating the effectiveness of the institutes in fulfilling their goals and the best on-going roles for the federal government, including on-going funding options, to ensure optimal benefit to U.S. competitiveness. This report reviews the role of DoD’s investment to date in establishing its eight institutes as public–private partnerships and its engagement with each institute after it has matured beyond the start-up period.

Report 3 on Tracking and Assessing Governance and Management Reform in the Nuclear Security Enterprise   (LAB)
Released 2019-03-08

The congressionally mandated report A New Foundation for the Nuclear Enterprise (the "Augustine-Mies" report), released in November 2014, concluded that "the existing governance structures and many of the practices of the [nuclear security] enterprise are inefficient and ineffective, thereby putting the entire enterprise at risk over the long term." Following the release of the Augustine-Mies report, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016 called for DOE to develop an implementation plan for responding to the recommendations in that and similar reports. The NDAA also called for a 4 1⁄2-year study, joint between the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and the National Academy of Public Administration, to evaluate the implementation plan, to track the actions proposed in that plan, and to assess progress. This report is the third in a series of reports to be issued over 2017–2020 as part of that study.

Acquisition Strategies for Future Space-Based OpticsUnclassified Summary   (ICSB,AFSB)
Released 2019-02-26

This study originated with congressionally directed language from the House Permanent Select Committee for Intelligence (HPSCI) in 2016 and titled “Acquisition Strategies for Future Space Based Optics”. This publication is an unclassified summary of the classified report.

Frontiers of Materials ResearchA Decadal Survey   (NMMB,BPA)
Released 2019-02-08 Forthcoming/Prepublication

Modern materials science builds on knowledge from physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, computer and data science, and engineering sciences to enable us to understand, control, and expand the material world. Although it is anchored in inquiry-based fundamental science, materials research is strongly focused on discovering and producing reliable and economically viable materials, from super alloys to polymer composites, that are used in a vast array of products essential to today’s societies and economies. Frontiers of Materials Research: A Decadal Survey is aimed at documenting the status and promising future directions of materials research in the United States in the context of similar efforts worldwide. This third decadal survey in materials research reviews the progress and achievements in materials research and changes in the materials research landscape over the last decade; research opportunities for investment for the period 2020-2030; impacts that materials research has had and is expected to have on emerging technologies, national needs, and science; and challenges the enterprise may face over the next decade.

Report Series: Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary ScienceReview of the Planetary Science Aspects of NASA SMD's Lunar Science and Exploration Initiative   (SSB)
Released 2019-02-07

On December 11, 2017, President Donald Trump signed Space Policy Directive-1 (SPD-1). The new directive replaced original text in the National Space Policy of the United States of America and instructed the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to “lead the return of humans to the Moon for long-term exploration and utilization, followed by human missions to Mars and other destinations”. In response to and in support of the vision expressed in SPD-1, this report reviews decadal and other community-guided lunar science priorities as context for NASA’s current lunar plans and then presents and evaluates the actions being taken by NASA’s Planetary Science Division to support lunar science.

Report Series: Committee on Astrobiology and Planetary ScienceReview of the Commercial Aspects of NASA SMD's Lunar Science and Exploration Initiative   (SSB)
Released 2019-02-07

On December 11, 2017, President Donald Trump signed Space Policy Directive-1 (SPD-1). The new directive replaced original text in the National Space Policy of the United States of America and instructed the Administrator of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to "lead the return of humans to the Moon for long-term exploration and utilization, followed by human missions to Mars and other destinations". In response to and in support of the vision expressed in SPD-1, the first report reviewed decadal and other community-guided lunar science priorities as context for NASA’s current lunar plans and then presented and evaluated the actions being taken by NASA’s Planetary Science Division (PSD) to support lunar science. At the request of NASA PSD, this second report explores plans for commercial partnerships, lunar infrastructure development, and related aspects of NASA’s lunar science and exploration initiative.

Planetary Protection Classification of Sample-Return Missions from the Martian Moons   (SSB)
Released 2019-01-18 Forthcoming/Prepublication

An international consensus policy to prevent the biological cross-contamination of planetary bodies exists and is maintained by the Committee on Space Research (COSPAR) of the International Council for Science, which is consultative to the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space. Currently, COSPAR’s planetary protection policy does not specify the status of sample-return missions from Phobos or Deimos, the moons of Mars. Although the moons themselves are not considered potential habitats for life or of intrinsic relevance to prebiotic chemical evolution, recent studies indicate that a significant amount of material recently ejected from Mars could be present on the surface of Phobos and, to a lesser extent, Deimos. This report reviews recent theoretical, experimental, and modeling research on the environments and physical conditions encountered by Mars ejecta during certain processes. It recommends whether missions returning samples from Phobos and/or Deimos should be classified as “restricted” or “unrestricted” Earth return in the framework of the planetary protection policy maintained by COSPAR. This report also considers the specific ways the classification of sample return from Deimos is a different case than sample return from Phobos.

Making Climate Assessments WorkLearning from California and Other Subnational Climate Assessments: Proceedings of a Workshop   (BEES)
Released 2019-01-11

Climate assessment activities are increasingly driven by subnational organizations—city, county, and state governments; utilities and private companies; and stakeholder groups and engaged publics—trying to better serve their constituents, customers, and members by understanding and preparing for how climate change will impact them locally. Whether the threats are drought and wildfires, storm surge and sea level rise, or heat waves and urban heat islands, the warming climate is affecting people and communities across the country. To explore the growing role of subnational climate assessments and action, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine hosted the 2-day workshop on August 14-15, 2018. This publication summarizes the presentations and discussions from the workshop.