Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the current Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD) program, focusing on: (1) whether the selection process includes criteria that are adequate to ensure that only mature technologies are selected for ACTD prototypes; (2) whether guidance on transitioning to the normal acquisition process ensures that a prototype appropriately completes product and concept development and testing before entering production; and (3) the Department of Defense's (DOD) current practice of procuring more ACTD prototypes than needed to assess the military utility of a mature technology.
Recommendations for Executive Action
|Department of Defense||1. The Secretary of Defense should clarify the ACTD program guidance to: (1) ensure the use of mature technology with few, if any, exceptions; and (2) describe when transition to the development phase of the acquisition cycle is necessary and the types of development activity that may be appropriate.|
|Department of Defense||2. The Secretary of Defense should limit the number of prototypes to be procured to the quantities needed for early user demonstrations of mature technology until the item's product and concept development and testing have been completed.|