The Patriot Files Forums  

Go Back   The Patriot Files Forums > Warfare > Space

Post New Thread  Reply
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 03-07-2018, 03:18 PM
Boats's Avatar
Boats Boats is offline
Senior Member

Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 9,846
Arrow Pentagon’s top tech official: Take more risks in space

Pentagon’s top tech official: Take more risks in space
By: Aaron Mehta   7 hours ago

WASHINGTON – The Department of Defense needs to accept a greater amount of risk in its military space systems, the Pentagon’s top technology officer said Tuesday.

Michael Griffin, a former NASA administrator now serving as undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, said that while failures are not ideal, the department cannot insist on the high-cost, long-timeline requirements for space programs that it traditionally has required.

“We’ve trapped ourselves in a vicious cycle of spending a lot of money on mission assurance, which makes the assets incredibly expensive, which means the launch vehicles that support them need to have near certainty,” Griffin said. “What we should be thinking about is the overall cost of the architecture we deploy.”

For the last several years, the Pentagon has been trying to shift from its traditional space setup – relying on extremely expensive, uniquely designed, high-end systems – into a disaggregated architecture featuring an increased number of smaller, and ostensibly, less expensive systems. The move has been driven by fears that a single satellite make an easy target for a potential adversary looking to take out America’s capabilities, whereas a disaggregated system would be more survivable.

But despite vocal support from Pentagon officials for such a shift, the slow speed of both the Pentagon bureaucracy and the long lead times associated with existing space system designs mean that change has yet to happen.

Griffin hopes to change that, moving more towards a “production mindset,” one where the ability to churn out small satellites associated with regular, low-cost space launch that is now available. But in doing so, he acknowledged that more risk need to be accepted by a department that famously insists on what is known as “assured launch” and shuts down launch providers for weeks or months if a mishap happens.

The theory that the Pentagon cannot afford to insist on a perfect solution undergirds Griffin’s broader view of defense acquisition, ten days after he took office.

“Somehow we have evolved to believing, as a nation, as a culture… that we had to be 100 percent right, or 99 percent right, that everything had to be perfect before we could proceed,” Griffin said during his speech at the McAleese/Credit Suisse conference Tuesday. “The consequences of not being perfect where what, that someone breaks some hardware? That doesn’t actually matter that much. That’s a cheap thing to do.”

It was also clear from Griffin’s comments that he looks at the Chinese as the potential primary antagonist for the U.S. going forward.

“The Chinese love our acquisition system,” he said. “They’re the biggest fans of our acquisition system as there can be. They certainly don’t want us to change it. They take delight in it.”

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

sendpm.gif Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 11:33 PM.

Powered by vBulletin, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.