Modernization Of Armed Forces A Collaborative Effort
by David Vergun, DOD News
September 21, 2022
The Defense Department, in collaboration
with academia, industry, allies and partners, is developing
cutting-edge technology to ensure the warfighter has the upper edge
on the battlefield.
Heidi Shyu, undersecretary of defense
for research and engineering, provided virtual opening remarks at
the Inaugural Defense Department Basic Research Conference in
The fiscal year 2022 National Defense
Strategy sets out three main themes, she said.
theme is integrated deterrence. Research and engineering, or R&E, is
working to ensure that the joint force can operate seamlessly across
all domains ... air, land, sea, cyber and space ... and in concert
with allies and partners, she said.
R&E is advancing
several international partnerships, including with Australia, the
United Kingdom, Israel and NATO, she said.
comparative test program also promotes coalition interoperability
and strengthens our shared defense industrial base. Our mission
engineering division is using modeling and simulation to assess
joint capability gaps, and how we're integrating critical enabling
technologies into mission architectures," Shyu said.
A NASA artist's rendering depicts a hypersonic vehicle.
The second theme is campaigning.
This relies upon R&E's efforts to work with partners across the
interagency, including the Departments of Treasury and Commerce, the
State Department and the Small Business Administration, she said.
The Rapid Defense
Experimentation Reserve program has embarked on a continuous
campaign of joint experimentation to close the gaps in joint
warfighting capability, she said. These joint experiments are
scenario-based and will be conducted in six-month cycles starting
This experimentation, she said, will involve 14
critical technology areas for the warfighter. The technology areas
include biotechnology; quantum sciences; advanced materials; future
G, which is beyond 5G technologies that also have a lot of
commercial development, trusted artificial intelligence and
autonomy; microelectronics; space technology; renewable energy;
integrated network; systems of systems; advanced computing and
software; human-machine interfaces; hypersonics; direct energy; and
integrated sensing and cyber.
The third theme is building
enduring advantages, Shyu said. R&E is working to identify reforms
to accelerate the development and acquisition of critical
technologies and is making necessary investments to the workforce.
"We're supporting the future defense innovation base through
initiatives to support small businesses, startups and other
nontraditional companies and encouraging them to work with the DOD,"
R&E's Mission Has
Three Focal Points:
First, the DOD is leveraging the
United States' incredible science and technology innovation
community to solve the department's toughest operational and
engineering challenges with cross-cutting solutions that benefit all
military services, she said.
Second, R&E is setting the foundation today to attract and build a
strong talented future technical workforce that will work in
modernized laboratories and test facilities, she said.
R&E-supported university affiliated research centers and federally
funded research and development centers work on cutting-edge
technologies including space dynamics, system engineering, applied
physics, software engineering, and geophysical detection, she said.
"We're committed to fostering a culture that encourages
innovation and risk taking. Our future depends on our STEM
workforce, so we must invest in multiple talent pipelines for the
defense innovation base," Shyu said. STEM refers to science,
technology, engineering and math.
Shyu mentioned that the
department is also working with underrepresented talent in academia,
including historically Black colleges and universities and other
The third focal point is success
The Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division’s Sly Fox Mission 23 team demonstrates autonomous remote tactical engagement multi-domain intelligence swarm capabilities, in Dahlgren, VA on August 7, 2018. (U.S. Navy photo by John Joyce)
"We're working collaboratively with
partners across the technology ecosystem to strengthen our
foundation. The work that's being done by our basic research office
and by all of you is foundational for the continued technological
dominance of the United States. Basic research is a core of what we
do in research and engineering. And it's a core of every single
system that we use. Collaboration is the key to creating new and
novel ideas," Shyu said.
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