Chapter III. Technology Transition
Army Science and Technology Master Plan (ASTMP 1997)

1. Introduction

Joint Service Program

In response to congressional interest in the readiness and effectiveness of U.S. NBC warfare defenses, Title XVII of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1994 (Public Law 103-160) required the Department of Defense to consolidate management and oversight of the Chemical and Biological (CB) Warfare Defense program into a single office within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) and to execute oversight of the program through the Defense Acquisition Board process. The public law also designated the Army as the Executive Agent for coordination and integration of the program, and consolidates NBC warfare defense training activities at the U.S. Army Chemical School. In addition, all Services' funding requests are now combined into a single program element for each of the funding categories (research, development, test, and evaluation, etc.). This process consolidates individual Service requirements and development efforts into a true joint program of common requirements, research, and development efforts.

The NBC section of the Army Science and Technology Master Plan reflects a joint Service technology base strategy for CB defense. The strategy herein is consistent with the Army Modernization Plan, the Joint Service NBC Modernization Plan, the Joint Service NBC Defense RDA Plan, and the DoD Chemical Biological Defense Technology Area Plan. The Army program in Smoke/Obscurants and Target Defeating Technologies (flame incendiary, antimaterial, riot control) is not a part of the joint CB Defense Program, but is included as a traditional part of the Army NBC defense mission area.

NBC Mission Area

Any nation with the will and the necessary resources can develop a formidable offensive nuclear, biological, and chemical warfare capability. They can readily turn their legitimate nuclear, medical, biotechnology, and chemical facilities to the development of NBC weapons. Additionally, the sale of technology and loss of control over Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) in various world regions increases the risk of WMD being employed against the United States and its allies during contingency operations. Potential for terrorist use of NBC materials against U.S. or allied operations is a very real threat. The Tokyo, Japan, subway incident underscores the potential of terrorist activity involving NBC materials. Despite existing treaties and ongoing treaty negotiations, NBC weapons proliferation is a continuing threat.

The objectives of the NBC Mission Area are to provide U.S. forces with the capability to detect and survive an initial NBC attack and to effectively sustain mission operations with minimal casualties and equipment degradation; to provide electro-optical obscuration material to screen U.S. assets from enemy Precision Guided Weapons and Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition (RSTA); and to provide smoke/obscurants and target defeating capabilities which allow achievement of military objectives with minimal collateral damage. The technology investment in support of these objectives is covered below.