Defense Acquisitions: Key Questions Confront the Army's Ground Force Modernization Initiatives

GAO-11-425T Published: Mar 09, 2011. Publicly Released: Mar 09, 2011.
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From 2003 through 2009, the Future Combat Systems program was at the center of the Army's efforts to modernize. But in 2009, DOD canceled the program and instead laid out plans for development of a ground combat vehicle (GCV) program, multiple increments of brigade modernization, and a tactical network. GCV is intended to modernize the current ground combat vehicle fleet; the early infantry brigade combat team (E-IBCT) to continue previous Future Combat Systems efforts to stage and spin out emerging technologies to current forces; and the tactical information network to provide connectivity, communications, and data for the warfighter. Each of these is in various stages of implementation: GCV is to begin technology development in April 2011; E-IBCT increments have been terminated in early production based on test results; and development of the tactical network is poised to begin. This testimony focuses on the Army's recent efforts to prepare for a new GCV development program, E-IBCT program test results and decisions, and emerging plans for the tactical network, as well as questions the Army faces as it makes significant decisions in those areas. DOD reviewed a draft of this testimony and provided technical comments, which were incorporated as appropriate.

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