Acquisition and Technology

technology

Overview

Technology has long been an advantage for U.S. forces, and the advances now coming off the shelf could increase America's lead. At the same time, decisionmakers must develop and acquire cutting-edge military systems in an era of ever-tighter resource constraints. They must also consider the implications of information warfare, constantly emerging battlefield technologies, and advanced modeling and simulation for military practice.

Organization

RAND research on acquisition and technology issues is conducted within each of RAND's national security research divisions and collaboratively across the RAND research community.

Key Research Centers:

Featured Findings Archive
  • A B-52 Stratofortress, assigned to the 49th Test and Evaluation Squadron from Barksdale Air Force Base, La., prepares for an operational demonstration of the Quickstrike-ER (QS-ER) Naval mine project at the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, May 28, 219. The QS-ER project was initiated by U.S. Indo-Pacific Command as part of ongoing efforts to modernize and enhance military readiness throughout the joint forces in the Indo-Pacific region, photo by Tech. Sgt. Heather Redman/U.S. Air Force

    Report

    Comparing the Cost-Effectiveness of Expendable Versus Reusable Small Air Vehicles

    Feb 23, 2021

    When using small unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), what are the relative costs of using expendable systems versus reusable systems? Research suggests they should be considered for a range of roles, including as decoys, jammers, or reconnaissance platforms.

  • A digital image of the globe with red point-to-point paths

    Report

    Managing Risk in Globalized Supply Chains

    Feb 21, 2021

    Policymakers have increased emphasis on national security risks deriving from globalization of weapon system supply chains. This report addresses the challenges the U.S. Air Force faces in mitigating the effects of these risks and suggests ways to improve how it addresses such risks in source selection and other decisions.

  • The Royal Australian Navy vessel Her Majesty's Australian Ship Adelaide (III) is escorted by a small boat upon arrival for a goodwill visit in Metro Manila, Philippines, October 10, 2017, photo by Romeo Ranoco/Reuters

    Testimony

    Australia’s Naval Shipbuilding Capability

    Nov 12, 2020

    During the past decade, Australia has used research to understand the cost, benefits, and challenges of national shipbuilding strategies and decisions. What recent developments should Australia's policymakers consider when planning naval ship programs?

Featured Findings Archive
  • The Advantages and Disadvantages of Seeking Commonality in Military Equipment 2011

    Examines the desirable and undesirable trade-offs that U.S. Army decisionmakers must make regarding commonality in military equipment.

  • Alternative Fuels for Military Applications 2011

    The military services have established programs geared toward reducing dependence on the use of petroleum-derived fuels in tactical weapon systems. This monograph examines alternative fuels that are candidates for military applications, focusing on economic viability, greenhouse gas emissions, military utility, and current alternative fuel development, testing, and certification efforts within the Department of Defense.

  • Are Ships Different? Policies and Procedures for the Acquisition of Ship Programs 2011

    Department of Defense policies, procedures, and organizations for program management and oversight of defense acquisition programs do not align well with shipbuilding. Ship acquisition programs have characteristics that deviate from the normal framework in significant ways, resulting in disconnects and some confusion. The authors examine these differences and suggest policies that can better account for them.

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