Project Air Force is Making a Difference with the Air Force

Research Spotlight

  • Residents flee from the town of Irpin, Ukraine, after heavy shelling by Russia destroyed the only escape route used by locals, March 6, 2022, photo by Carlos Barria/Reuters

    Russia's War in Ukraine: Insights from RAND

    A vast body of previously published RAND research—as well as real-time insights from RAND experts—sheds light on important issues related to Russia's attack against Ukraine. These include Russia's strategy and military capabilities, the Ukrainian resistance, and how to address the refugee crisis.

Recent Work

  • Flight test of a conventionally configured ground-launched cruise missile at San Nicolas Island, California, August 18, 2019, photo by Scott Howe/U.S. Department of Defense

    Challenges of Deploying Ground-Based Intermediate-Range Missiles on Allied Lands

    The United States has been hoping to develop and deploy ground-based intermediate-range missiles to the Indo-Pacific. But what is the likelihood of its treaty allies in the region—Australia, Japan, the Philippines, South Korea, and Thailand—hosting these systems? Are there alternatives to permanent basing?

  • An illustration of the International Space Station over Earth, image by NASA

    Commercial Space Market Development and Trends

    The growing commercial space industry offers a range of capabilities and services, including emerging technologies. Opportunities for the U.S. Space Force and Department of Defense to leverage these capabilities for military purposes are expanding. What concerns should stakeholders address?

  •  Russia's President Vladimir Putin and China's Xi Jinping walk down the stairs as they arrive for a BRICS summit in Brasilia, Brazil, November 14, 2019, photo by Ueslei Marcelino/Reuters

    Understanding the Emerging Era of International Competition Through the Eyes of Others: Country Perspectives

    The U.S. National Security Strategy focuses on the expectation of a new era of growing international competition. RAND researchers evaluated how the competition looks through the eyes of other major powers, beginning with the primary challengers to the U.S.-led international order, and expanding to key countries around the world.

  • Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi and Russian President Vladimir Putin shake hands at the Russia-Africa Summit in Sochi, Russia, October 24, 2019, photo by Sergei Chirikov/Pool/Reuters

    Russia's Growing Presence in Africa

    Knowing where Russia is involved in Africa and where it is likely to become engaged in the future can help U.S. Air Forces Africa refine its regional strategy. A geostrategic assessment shows Russian activity in commercial, diplomatic, military, and paramilitary domains.

  • Furture

    Supporting Combat Power Projection Away from Fixed Infrastructure

    A new report examines the logistics and sustainment aspects of an emerging operational concept for employing a family of unmanned aerial vehicles that can be launched, recovered, and sustained with minimal reliance on runways.

  • The launch of an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile during a test at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California, February 5, 2020, photo by SrA Clayton Wear/U.S. Air Force

    Weighing the Cost and Necessity of Nuclear Modernization

    The United States has fielded a Triad of air-, sea-, and land-based nuclear delivery systems since the 1950s. Major components are nearing the end of their service lives, raising the question of whether to extend or replace them. Meanwhile, Russia and China continue to modernize, diversify, and expand their nuclear arsenals.

  • A viewfinder perspective from internal camera, as from a landed drone

    Improving Intelligence Support to the Future Warfighter: Acquisition for the Contested Environment

    How can U.S. Air Force intelligence best support the acquisition community? A RAND report finds that the main challenge is in ensuring the ability of the acquisition community to deliver capabilities that meet a threat as it exists when capabilities are delivered, not as it was when requirements were set.