Title: "Trust Me--I'll Deliver" Acquisition Approaches to Guarantee Commercial Companies Deliver Critical Space Products in Time of Crisis
Subject: How can the US Department of Defense's use effective acquisition approaches to guarantee delivery of commercial space products to meet key operational information and data transfer requirements in time of war or international crisis?
Author(s): Stephen T. Denker; Theresa R. Clark (Faculty Advisor)
DTIC Keywords: ACQUISITION, AEROSPACE INDUSTRY, CELLULAR COMMUNICATIONS, COMMAND CONTROL COMMUNICATIONS, COMMERCIAL COMMUNICATIONS, COMMUNICATIONS NETWORKS, DATA TRANSMISSION SYSTEMS, GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS, SATELLITE COMMUNICATIONS, SPACE BASED, SPACE COMMUNICATIONS, SPACE COMMUNICATIONS, SPACE MISSIONS, SPACE NAVIGATION
Abstract: The DOD historically designs, develops, owns, and operates the systems to meet its requirements for space-based imagery, voice and data communications, weather, and navigation information. However, over the last ten years, the US military has begun to rely on commercially available products to meet many of its requirements in a variety of sectors including the commercial space sector. The commercial space sector's capability to provide competitive options for data and voice communications, and more recently satellite imagery, continues to fuel this trend to the point the DOD must rely on commercial companies for critical products. This reliance is causing many inside the DOD to ask the question addressed in this paper: can the DOD guarantee warfighters' requirements are met in time of crisis by using appropriate acquisition approaches? To answer this question the paper is organized into five sections: a review and analysis of the trends driving the military to rely on the commercial space sector; a summary of military requirements being met by the commercial space sector; an analysis of how to reduce the risks of reliance on the commercial sector; an evaluation of several acquisition approaches; and finally, a recommended acquisition approach to guarantee commercial delivery of critical products in time of crisis.