Big-money satellite procurements remain firmly in the clutch of the big primes. Nowhere is this more apparent than in missile defense satellite programs.
The House Appropriations Committee commended the Air Force’s launch procurement strategy for increasing competition and eliminating U.S. reliance on Russian rocket engines.
A reorganization of the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center and the establishment of a rapid procurement office for space are just the initial steps toward getting “better and faster,” Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Stephen Wilson said last week.
The Space Enterprise Consortium does not follow the arcane defense acquisition regulations. It requires traditional defense contractors to work with nontraditional vendors.
Griffin: "The bumper sticker version of my job is that I don’t have anything to do with anything that the Defense Department is currently buying. "
SN Military.Space | Space reforms near decision point • SMC Commander: Procurement slow but not broken • Mattis downplays impact of Trump trade wars
Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told reporters the Pentagon appreciates the congressional focus on space issues and is not being passive about space reforms, although he would like to see further debate on the pros and cons of reorganizing the military.
SN Military.Space | Faster acquisitions a ‘daunting task’ for DoD; Satellite comms: What does DoD want?
Air Force Gen. John Hyten has been insistent that U.S. military space programs need to “go faster” as adversaries continue to close in on the United States.
Air Force secretary raises space awareness inside Pentagon; Startups grab spotlight at satellite industry’s annual DC trade show
Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson is using regular meetings with her Army and Navy counterparts to keep her colleagues up to date on space issues and on the emerging concept of “multi-domain” military operations that requires broader sharing of information.
Griffin: In the DoD space business there is a culture of “perfect mission assurance” that leads to overly complex and expensive systems.
Op-ed | As adversaries threaten U.S. space systems, serious changes are needed in defense procurement
Rigidity of the military requirements process means that systems cannot be changed easily after development begins, resulting in systems that are technologically obsolete by the time they reach production.