Test and Evaluation:

An Assessment of Navy's Long-Term Underwater Test Resources Plan

NSIAD-88-80: Published: Mar 28, 1988. Publicly Released: Mar 28, 1988.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Navy's Long-Term Underwater Support Resources Plan, to determine its comprehensiveness and usefulness as a management tool.

GAO found that, although the plan covers tracking ranges, ship noise measurement facilities, targets, and real-time simulators, it does not: (1) consolidate and prioritize test resource development and acquisition programs; (2) include acoustic requirements data from fleet units; (3) include all options for meeting weapons system noise measurement requirements, including those costing $5 million or less; and (4) present a cost-effective rationale for the future use of the Navy's Atlantic Undersea Test and Evaluation Center. GAO also found that: (1) the Navy planned to use the Atlantic Undersea Test and Evaluation Center for training and, to a lesser extent, for research and development; (2) in order to coordinate and emphasize test resource acquisition, the Department of Defense and the military services implemented initiatives to improve test resource planning; and (3) the Navy failed to implement a recommendation to modify its plan for new facilities, which could save an estimated $71.4 million, or to consolidate existing facilities, at an estimated savings of $4.9 million in annual operating costs.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: DOD has taken action dealing with two of the four recommendations. The Navy has obtained and incorporated underwater acoustic measurement requirements from fleet units in their long range test resources plan. It has also included all options regardless of dollar value to meet these requirements. In the past, the Navy provided reasons why it would not implement the two remaining recommendations.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should require the Secretary of the Navy to revise the Long-Term Underwater Support Resources (LTUSR) Plan to: (1) integrate and rank all test resource development programs; (2) obtain and incorporate underwater acoustic measurement requirements from fleet units; (3) present other options to meet weapon system acoustic measurement requirements and eliminate dollar thresholds so that additional options can be considered; and (4) determine whether the Atlantic Undersea Test and Evaluation Center is the most cost-effective alternative to meet unit training requirements beyond the next 5-year period (1988 to 1993).

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense


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