News 1998 Army Science and Technology Master Plan

3. Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions

The AMC has set the pace for the DoD in programs for the HBCUs and MIs that share the goal of strengthening those institutions and enhancing their ability to participate in defense research, while preparing underrepresented minority students for the future, highly competitive S&T–oriented marketplace. The AMC is dedicated to increasing the participation of the HBCUs and MIs in all of its programs, particularly in the research and development (R&D) activities of the Army laboratories and RDECs.

The ARO has supported programs for the HBCUs and MIs since 1980. In addition, the ARO manages the DoD Infrastructure Support Program for these institutions. This special program has awarded over $97 million to them since it began in 1992, including over $38 million in grants to HBCUs and MIs to support collaborative research, instrumentation for research and education, COEs, and education centers for science, engineering, and mathematics (SEM). The HBCUs and MI COEs, supported by DoD funds under ARO grants, are conducting long–term research programs in Advanced Distributed Simulation and Intelligent Resin Transfer Molding for Integral Armor Applications (see Table V–3).

In addition to the DoD–funded centers, two other HBCUs or MIs are supported by ARO funds. These include a research consortium for Fuel Cell Battery Research, led by the Illinois Institute of Technology, and a Center for SEM Education at Contra Costa College.

Single investigator research programs make up a significant part of the ARO HBCU and MI program. Approximately $1 million is set aside for HBCUs and MIs in FY98 for research in several areas of interest to ARO. These areas include wireless communications, nonlinear optics, modeling and analysis of superplastic and electromagnetic materials, free electron lasers, and wide–bandgap semiconductors.

See Chapter VII–C.2 for additional information on support of HBCUs and MIs.

4. Single Investigator Programs

A major contributor to the Army science base is the single investigator working at a university and, to a lesser extent, in industry. These Army–sponsored researchers act as windows into the academic world for exploration of scientific discoveries. Individual investigators provide the Army with the ability to broadly impact the total science base, quickly exploiting opportunities that might arise. The research areas are relevant to Army needs and subject to scientific peer review. History has shown that the single investigator program has contributed significantly to the Army science base, with eight Nobel prizes awarded for Army–sponsored research. The areas of research pursued by the single investigator are discussed in the Surveys of Scientific Research (Section C) of this chapter.

5. Federated Laboratories

The AMC has a key research initiative to support the Army’s thrust to digitize the battlefield. The objective of the Army digitization effort is to ensure the superiority of command and control (C2) systems by providing warfighters with a horizontally and vertically integrated digital information network. This network will provide a simultaneous, consistent picture of the battlefield from soldier to commander at each echelon, as well as across all the services and allied forces. ARL has prime responsibility for the AMC’s intramural research program and this program has been enhanced by the development of a federated laboratory concept.

The federated laboratory construct for conducting research is an innovative approach to integrating external research relevant to battlefield information systems—where the private sector has a substantial technology capability—with internal ARL research through the establishment of consortia in critical technology areas. Rather than developing or maintaining in–house research capabilities across the entire technological spectrum, this approach leverages external expertise, facilities, and technologies in areas where the private sector has both the lead and the incentive to invest, such as in telecommunications technologies. To date, the Army is benefiting from $12.2 million in consortium investments, including $5.6 million to customize laboratories to support research defined in the Annual Program Plan and $5.9 million in independent research and development (IR&D) programs that have been redirected to support the research objectives of the federated laboratory. The intent of the federated laboratory is to form distributed public and private–sector teams that together conduct research, develop new technologies, and employ existing state–of–the–art concepts and infrastructure available in industry, academia, and the Army. This approach has produced an effective synergy between government, industry, and academia that will provide the maximum return on Army resources by:

Adopting an integrated approach that combines the best of the public and private sectors to achieve future land warfare capabilities.

Utilizing Army technical personnel in defining the Annual Research Plan to be executed with the consortia, ensuring it is focused on Army needs. The cooperative agreement managers (government leads) conduct quarterly reviews of the programs to ensure the focus is maintained and the consortia are executing their plans as scheduled. The federated laboratory also conducts program reviews with DDR&E Reliance Panels and Army R&D commands.

Ensuring that the Army and DoD research communities are aware of the research being conducted by the federated laboratory. Each consortium conducted a symposium that drew a total of 720 people with over 1,200 copies of the symposia proceedings requested to date. In addition, in FY96 a total of 144 technical papers were published.

Fostering and formalizing collaboration through the exchange of researchers from government to consortia and from consortia to government. This staff rotation is a foundation of the federated laboratory process and the target goal is to have twenty percent of the researchers on long–term rotation at any given time.

Employing a unique management concept in which the government and the consortia, through a Consortium Management Committee, collaboratively develop and adjust research plans as formalized in the consortium’ s Articles of Collaboration.

Integrating the ARL federated research program with those at other Army and DoD components to ensure that there will be a smooth transition of research results, and that there is no duplication of effort.

Fostering a technical management approach that ensures that the consortia programs are integral to the overall ARL program, and that creates an environment where academic, industry, and government researchers can identify and collectively address key Army technology gaps.

Providing a way to adapt commercial technologies to the unique needs of the military environment, and allowing government research to impact the industry protocols and standards of the future.

In January 1996, the Army awarded three federated laboratory cooperative research agreements:

Telecommunications/information distribution

– Wireless communication
– Tactical/strategic interoperability
– Information distribution
– Multimedia concepts

Advanced and interactive displays

– Soldier centered computer interface
– Perception (sensory) based display formats
– Cognitive measures of C2 performance

Advanced sensors

– Multidomain smart sensors
– Multisensor fusion
– Radar
– Signal processing
– Microsensors.

The selection of research areas was based on the needs of the Army’s Digitization Initiative and the priority of the research programs to meet critical technology gaps in the Force XXI and AAN visions. The consortia participants are listed in Table V–5. During the second year, the federated laboratory has attracted associate members and established no–cost collaborations with key sources of technology:

Texas A&M University: Research perspectives on presentation and decision aids.
Carnegie Mellon University: Modeling and simulation tools for information processing.
Micovision: Virtual retinal display technology.
MIL3, Inc.: Modify OPNET to better simulate military communications.

6. In–House Laboratory Independent Research

In–house laboratory independent research (ILIR) is a traditional part of the Army’s basic research program. ILIR allocates 6.1 discretionary funds to the directors of selected Army research organizations to fund in–house research projects of exceptional scientific quality that have high risk but also very high potential payoff to the Army’s science and technology programs. ILIR funds are distributed to Army RDECs, the Corps of Engineers, the Medical Research and Materiel Command laboratories, and ARI. ILIR is reviewed yearly by the Office of the Assistant

Table V–5.  Federated Laboratory Consortia Participants


Information Distribution

Advanced and
Interactive Displays

Advanced Sensors

Industry Lead Lockheed Sanders Rockwell International Lockheed Sanders
HBCU/MI Partners Howard University

Morgan State University

North Carolina A&T Clark Atlanta University

University of New Mexico

Academic and Industry Partners Bell Communications Research

City College of New York

GTE Laboratories



University of Delaware

University of Maryland

Microelectronics Center of NC


University of Illinois

Environmental Research Institute of Michigan

Georgia Tech Research Institute

Lockheed Missiles and Space Company


Ohio State University Research Foundation

Stanford University

Texas Instruments

University of Maryland

University of Michigan

Secretary of the Army (Research, Development and Acquisition) (OASA(RDA)), using metrics developed to assess programmatic effectiveness. The yearly review examines the quality, relevance, productivity, and resources of the ILIR work performed by each organization and determines its ratio of ILIR funding for the next fiscal year. This review results in only the best performers being rewarded. Within each organization, innovative research proposals submitted by scientists and engineers compete for ILIR funding through internal management and technical reviews of the proposals.

Successful ILIR projects, on completion, will typically define a start–up project for 6.1 or 6.2 mission funding within the organization. In addition to providing a pathway for the development of novel and high quality research projects by providing support for the most innovative and often speculative ideas, this program is instrumental in enhancing the recruitment and retention of outstanding scientists and engineers. The creative atmosphere fostered in this manner is essential to the identification of emerging operational concepts and technology thrusts for the future.

7. Army After Next Research Areas of Emphasis

The Army After Next project conducts broad studies of warfare to frame issues vital to the development of the U.S. Army to about the year 2025, and provides these issues to the senior Army leadership in a format suitable for integration into Training and Doctrine Command’s (TRADOC) combat development programs. The AAN project conducts its studies through an annual cycle of wargames and workshops that culminates in an annual report to the Army Chief of Staff. Studies are currently pursued in four areas focused out to 2025: geopolitics, military art, human and organizational behavior, and technology. Those studies focused on technology are of prime importance to the Army’s research effort.

The first year of study by the AAN project resulted in recommendations for investments in basic research that were assessed to have the greatest potential in producing key enabling technologies for the U.S. Army in the 2010–2025 timeframe. OASA (RDA) has taken these recommendations and developed an approach to focus basic research investments based on defense SROs by:

Emphasizing specific aspects of current defense SROs.
Developing a set of emerging Army SROs.
Studying those areas of emphasis highlighted by the AAN project for other emerging SROs.

Note: Army efforts toward defense SROs are discussed in Section B.8 of this chapter.

Defense SROs support emerging AAN technology needs as follows:

Defense SRO

AAN Emphasis for Research

Mobile Wireless Communications Expand to include terrain– and environment–independent communications and data management
Biomimetics Address lightweight protective materials
Intelligent Systems Address unmanned vehicles and robotics concepts

The Army leadership is discussing the possibility of identifying specific Army SROs in addition to defense SROs, that support the AAN. For FY98 the basic research budget dedicated to SRO topics is expected to increase from the current 15 percent to approximately 30 percent. Leading candidates for possible Army SROs emerging from AAN studies are:

Enhanced soldier combat performance

– Physiological enhancements (nutrition/medical interventions)
– Cognitive engineering

Signature management/control
Full–dimensional protection for information systems
Microminiature multifunctional sensors

The AAN project also recognizes that basic research may provide unexpected and revolutionary technologies that can further enhance the capabilities of future Army forces or, in extreme cases, fundamentally impact the system, design, and operational concepts upon which these forces will be based. While seeking major breakthroughs in technology, the synergy among currently developing research and technologies must be exploited to achieve revolutionary effects for the AAN forces. Some technology areas that have been identified as potentially enabling for the AAN force are:

Hybrid power systems
Fuel efficiency (reduce consumption by 75 percent)
Human engineering/cognitive engineering
Signature control (including counters)
Protection schemes for land systems (including active protection)
Advanced materials
Alternative propellants
Chemical and biological (CB) protection, antidotes, and vaccines
Logistics efficiencies.

The AAN has identified systems to provide perspective to the basic research community in imagining where basic–research–derived technologies may be applied in 2010–2025. They include:

Future ground craft
Advanced airframe, including heavy lift/tactical utility lift
Autonomous and semiautonomous unmanned systems (air, ground, sensors)
Advanced fire support system
"Living internet"
Active protection
Soldier as a system.

The Army will leverage and support to the maximum requirements from the other services, academia, and commercial industry that support AAN capabilities. The Army will direct its basic research dollars toward those Army–unique technologies that are critical to AAN force capabilities. Examples of other service activities that have great potential for leveraging are:

Navy: Fast sealift—speeds in excess of 50 knots

Air Force:

– Larger cargo lifter—1 million pound lift capacity
– Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)

Marine Corps: Nonlethal technologies.

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