Science and Technology News

Monday, April 22, 2013

Innovation, Resilience and Affordability: Keys to AFSPC Success

by Maj. Christina Hoggatt
Air Force Space Command Public Affairs

4/22/2013 - COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.  -- Air Force Space Command's Director of Strategic Plans, Programs and Analyses, Brigadier General Roger W. Teague, presented the Acquisition Luncheon keynote address April 11 during the 29th National Space Symposium held here at the Broadmoor hotel.

Speaking to a room of both government and commercial acquisition experts, Brig. Gen. Teague discussed the challenges of the emerging national security space environment during an extremely tight fiscal point.

He said innovation, resiliency and affordability will be the keys to moving ahead in today's fiscal environment, while still preparing for and investing in the future.
In fact, he pointed out how the acquisition professionals at the Space and Missile Systems Center have already made great strides in support of this objective by streamlining the acquisition plans and strategies for follow-on buys of Advanced Extremely High Frequency -5/6, Space-Based Infrared System-5/6 and Global Positioning System III.

"Through innovative strategies, smart application of risk reduction and lessons learned, SMC realized $985 million in cost reductions and savings in these programs," Brig. Gen. Teague said. "These savings were really generated by an intense focus in four areas: improving governance and leaning out processes; reducing staffing and streamlining organizations; tackling production contract costs; and examining on an event by event basis, all elements of test risk in production process."

He said SMC will focus on the initiatives in those four areas to continue to target an additional $600 million in cost reductions throughout 2013.

"We will strive to make space systems more affordable by targeting cost reductions across 20 major contracts and drive down production and sustainment costs," the general said. "While we are faced with significant challenges, this also represents an opportunity."

Speaking to opportunities, the general mentioned the success of the Commercially Hosted Infrared Payload program.

"This program paved the way to demonstrate improved mission resiliency through disaggregation," he said. "While CHIRP was a tech demo effort, its success reinforces the critical need to preserve our Space Modernization funding lines in both SBIRS and AEHF programs."

Identifying the dramatic changes in the space environment and the budget over the past 20 years, the general pointed out the importance of change and flexibility.
"Today's approach relies largely on a small number of large, extremely capable multifunction satellites," Brig. Gen. Teague said. "Given the evolving space environment, we believe we need to aggressively pursue resilient solutions that could potentially operate through contested environments and give us cheaper alternatives to replenish architectures should our capabilities be lost."

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