News 1998 Army Science and Technology Master Plan



D. LEVERAGING THE ARMY TECHNOLOGY BASE

As part of its overall technology program strategy, SOCOM has initiated an effort to institutionalize a process that will strengthen the cooperation between the command and the Army R&D community in the pursuit of technologies of mutual value to both users. In 1997, this process was implemented by an assessment team made up of representatives from the SOCOM staff and its components. SOCOM’s goal for the first year of execution is to review the technology projects (i.e., the Work Packages (WPs)) of four of the technology Directorates of the Army Research Laboratory (ARL) and one of the Army’s Research, Development, and Engineering Centers (RDEC), and identify the WPs that are of high–to–considerable value to SOF in resolving materiel shortcomings. The Army Science Advisor to SOCOM has developed this process and the related assessment methodology, serves as the team leader for this effort, and has briefed the assessment results to the Army organization’s senior staff for establishing future cooperative endeavors. The Army organizations whose WPs were reviewed and who received briefings on SOF’s assessment of their value for improving future capabilities, are (in review order for this year):

Sensors and Electron Devices Directorate (S&EDD), ARL
Weapons and Materials Research Directorate (W&MRD), ARL
Information Science and Technology Directorate (IS&TD), ARL
Human Research and Engineering Directorate (HR&ED), ARL
Natick Research, Development, and Engineering Center (NRDEC), Soldier System Command (SSCOM).

During 1998, SOCOM will expand this effort to several of the other Army Materiel Command’s RDECs, as well as to the Army Research Institute.

In addition to presenting a prioritization of the WPs relevant to SOF needs in four categories ranging from Critical (Technologies to SOF) to Of Interest (to SOF), the briefings included: 1) a description of the methodology used in establishing the prioritization; 2) an identification of the Technology Development Objective(s) to which a majority of an organization’s WPs were aligned; 3) the specific SOF capability that each of the higher–rated WPs will improve; and 4) technology projects that are currently not in the organization’s technology base program but are in their area of technical expertise and are rated as being very important in resolving a SOF need. The Army WPs (identified in Table F–2) have been judged to be very important potentially for improving SOF future capabilities .

As a leveraging initiative, the SOF community will begin monitoring the progress of these technology developments; will suggest revisions to the technology project (in coordination with the responsible Army research organization) if necessary, to ensure it will directly resolve a SOF need; will consider a future possible transition to a SOF development program if the technology successfully reaches maturity; and may possibly commit manpower/equipment assets to operationally assess its capability when the technology successfully matures to the prototype stage. In these cases SOCOM will be identified as a proponent for these WPs. Therefore, SOCOM anticipates that the above technologies will remain as viable Army research projects, or at least as long as they continue to demonstrate expected progress.

Table F–2.  Most Important Army Technologies for Resolving SOF Needs

Work Package Title/Number

Responsible R&D Organization

RF Imaging Technology/16MRM04 S&EDD (ARL)
Airdrop Systems Technology/AA NRDEC
Biosensor Devices to Detect Biological/Chemical Warfare Agents/94MDB01 S&EDD (ARL)
Inertial Reticle Technology/WCD2035* W&MRD (ARL)
Weapons Technology for the Light Forces/WCD 211 W&MRD (ARL)
Protocol Specs for Digital Commo on the Battlefield/ISTDY1001* IS&TD (ARL)
VR Research–Virtual Interface Technology/4221, 422INS HR&ED (ARL)
Intelligent User Interfaces/4213NS, 4213* HR&ED (ARL)
Countermeasures to Battlefield Sensors/AB NRDEC
Ballistic Protection for Soldier Survivability/CC NRDEC
Laser Eye Protection and Integrated Headgear/CA NRDEC
Warrior Performance and Endurance Enhancement/AA NRDEC
Future Warrior Technologies/STOp19* NRDEC
Force XXI Land Warrior (S&T)/A* NRDEC
*These WPs are part of a Science and Technology Objective (STO) Program.

NOTE: This assessment is based on a review of only five Army organization’s technology projects.

Approximately 35 additional Army WPs were assessed to be of interest to the SOF community, and they have been passed on to the senior staff of the five Army organizations identified earlier. The SOF community judged these technologies to have potential impact on reducing conventional Army materiel shortcomings, which could also benefit SOF for Army–common developments and acquisition. In these cases, SOCOM will be identified as a supporter for these WPs.

The correlation of these projects assessed to be of most value to SOF, along with the Army research organizations responsible for their execution, the SOCOM technology requirements to which these technologies can potentially solve SOF shortcomings, and the Army Battle Lab whose future operational capabilities are most closely aligned to each of the SOF–proponent WPs, are depicted in Table F–3. This alignment should identify to each of the five Battle Labs (Battle Command (BC), CombatService Support (CSS), Depth and Simultaneous Attack (D&SA). Dismounted Battle Space (DBS), and Mounted Battle Space (MBS)), the Army WPs most important to SOF. As a result, during the Battle Lab’s annual review of the Army Materiel Command’s (AMC’s) technology projects in early 1998, they will be aware of these CINC–supported WPs and can factor this SOF input into their user assessment of AMC’s Tech Base program.

 

Table F–3.  Correlation of Select Army Technologies with SOCOM Requirements

Army Work Packages Important to SOF

Responsible Army R&D Organizations

Relevant SOCOM Technology
Development Objectives

Army Battle Labs

  HR&ED IS&TD S&EDD W&MRD NRDEC WMD Ind. Surv. Sensors Power Mobility C4I IW Countermine Target/Track Weapons Simulation and Training BC CSS D&SA DBS MBS
RF Imaging    

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Airdrop Systems Technology        

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Biosensor Devices for CBW Agents    

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Inertial Reticle Technology      

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Weapons Technology for Light Forces      

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Protocol Specs for Digital Comm.  

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VR Research—Virtual Interface

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Intelligent User Interfaces

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Countermeasures to Battlefield Sensors        

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Ballistic Protection for Soldier Survivability        

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Laser Eye Protection & Integrated Headgear        

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Warrior Performance & Endurance Enhancement        

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Future Warrior Technology        

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Force XXI Land Warrior (S&T)        

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dot1.gif (49 bytes) -  Most relevant TDO to the WP
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