Weapons research and development (41 - 50 of 152 items)
Defense Acquisitions: Stronger Management Practices Are Needed to Improve DOD's Software-Intensive Weapon Acquisitions
GAO-04-393: Published: Mar 1, 2004. Publicly Released: Mar 1, 2004.
The Department of Defense (DOD) has been relying increasingly on computer software to introduce or enhance performance capabilities of major weapon systems. To ensure successful outcomes, software acquisition requires disciplined processes and practices. Without such discipline, weapon programs encounter difficulty in meeting cost and schedule targets. For example, in fiscal year 2003, DOD might h...
Missile Defense: Additional Knowledge Needed in Developing System for Intercepting Long-Range Missiles
GAO-03-600: Published: Aug 21, 2003. Publicly Released: Sep 23, 2003.
A number of countries hostile to the United States and its allies have or will soon have missiles capable of delivering nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons. To counter this threat, the Department of Defense's (DOD's) Missile Defense Agency (MDA) is developing a system to defeat ballistic missiles. MDA expects to spend $50 billion over the next 5 years to develop and field this system. A signi...
Defense Acquisitions: Assessments of Major Weapon Programs
GAO-03-476: Published: May 15, 2003. Publicly Released: May 15, 2003.
The weapons the Department of Defense (DOD) develops have no rival in superiority. How they are developed can be improved, without sacrificing the superiority of the outcome. GAO's reviews over the past 20 years have found consistent problems with weapon investments--cost increases, schedule delays and performance shortfalls--along with underlying causes, such as pressure on managers to promise mo...
Best Practices: Setting Requirements Differently Could Reduce Weapon Systems' Total Ownership Costs
GAO-03-57: Published: Feb 11, 2003. Publicly Released: Feb 11, 2003.
For fiscal year 2003, the Department of Defense (DOD) asked for about $185 billion to develop, procure, operate, and maintain its weapon systems. This request represents an increase of 18 percent since 2001 for the total ownership costs of DOD weapon systems. Often, DOD systems need expensive spare parts and support systems after they are fielded to meet required readiness levels. DOD has been inc...
Best Practices: Capturing Design and Manufacturing Knowledge Early Improves Acquisition Outcomes
GAO-02-701: Published: Jul 15, 2002. Publicly Released: Jul 15, 2002.
This report examines how best practices offer improvements to the way the Department of Defense (DOD) develops new weapons systems, primarily the design and manufacturing aspects of the acquisition process. Knowledge about a product's design and producibility facilitates informed decisions about whether to significantly increase investments and reduces the risk of costly design changes later in th...
Defense Acquisitions: Steps to Improve the Crusader Program's Investment Decisions
GAO-02-201: Published: Feb 25, 2002. Publicly Released: Feb 25, 2002.
The Army wants an artillery system with greater firepower, range, and mobility than its current self-propelled howitzer. In 1994, the Army began to develop the Crusader, an advanced artillery system consisting of a self-propelled 155-millimeter howitzer and a resupply vehicle. The Department of Defense (DOD) will decide next year whether the Crusader program should enter its system development and...
Contract Management: DOD's Profit Policy Provision to Stimulate Innovation Needs Clarification
GAO-01-801: Published: Jul 26, 2001. Publicly Released: Aug 30, 2001.
In negotiating profit on contracts, the Department of Defense (DOD) requires contracting officers to set negotiating objectives by relying on guidelines in defense regulations. Congress mandated that DOD review its profit guidelines and consider whether modifying them would provide more incentive for contractors to develop and produce complex and innovative new technologies for weapon systems. Aft...
Best Practices: Better Matching of Needs and Resources Will Lead to Better Weapon System Outcomes
GAO-01-288: Published: Mar 8, 2001. Publicly Released: Mar 8, 2001.
This report examines how best practices offer improvements to the way the Department of Defense defines and matches weapon system requirements to available resources such as cost, schedule, and mature technologies. GAO identified three factors that were key to matching needs and resources before product development began. First, developers employed the technique of systems engineering to identify...
Defense Acquisitions: Higher Priority Needed for Army Operating and Support Cost Reduction Efforts
NSIAD-00-197: Published: Sep 29, 2000. Publicly Released: Sep 29, 2000.
Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the Department of Defense's (DOD) efforts to reduce weapon system operating and support costs, focusing on the Army's efforts to reduce: (1) projected operating and support costs for weapon systems under development; and (2) operating and support costs of fielded weapon systems.GAO noted that: (1) the Army is unlikely to be effective...
Best Practices: A More Constructive Test Approach Is Key to Better Weapon System Outcomes
NSIAD-00-199: Published: Jul 31, 2000. Publicly Released: Jul 31, 2000.
Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the role of testing and evaluation in product development, focusing on: (1) how the conduct of testing and evaluation affects commercial and Department of Defense (DOD) program outcomes; (2) how best commercial testing and evaluation practices compare with DOD's; and (3) what factors account for the differences in these practices.GAO...