onstrated that the directorate’s scientists and engineers understand the complex relationship between structure, processing, and properties. Using the various computational tools to help predict material performance shows the staff’s excellent desire to increase their fundamental understanding of material behavior and to maximize experimental capabilities and effectiveness.
The importance of high-performance computing in linking experimental facilities to modeling and its validation to WMRD’s programs was discussed in the context of a three-legged stool: theory, experiments, and computation, for both the protection and the lethality thrust areas. The 2009 review presentations clearly described the diverse challenges of WMRD as it strives to address near-term ballistic protection to counteract the improvised explosive device (IED) threats facing U.S. troops overseas while still striving to support ongoing R&D and also to reinvigorate longer-term materials R&D. This balanced approach is appropriate: addressing first and foremost the pressing deliverables to support warfighters in the field while continuing to support and grow the fundamental and applied R&D to support the warfighter in conflicts of the future. Clearly the transition of focus within ARL from the Future Combat Systems (FCS) to the Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) program scope has forced some changes in course within WMRD in the protection area. Complex and shifting requirements issues drive this transition, and WMRD has been commendably flexible in adapting to these changes in focus and scope within its armor protection R&D thrust.
WMRD’s overview of its lethality portfolio, presented to the panel in 2010, emphasized the importance of warfighter outcomes (WFOs) in maintaining adversary overmatch, minimizing collateral damage, and providing non-line-of-sight scalable lethality. The breadth of the force application mission was outlined: it spans soldier ground tactics, aviation, fire support and non-line-of-sight, networked systems, scalable effects from nonlethal to lethal—all the while maintaining overmatch.
The high-level emphasis on tuning effects to targets as the focus moves from structures to individuals was detailed for the panel; WMRD also described how this changing emphasis demands variable-scalable lethality. The expressed goal of the lethality program is the right lethality at the right time and in the right place without putting the warfighter in harm’s way. The described concept of an armed wingman, an armed robotic entity that separates the warfighter from the energetics and gun mechanisms, is very forward thinking and innovative.
WMRD incorporated the results of discussions with panel members during the 2009 review into its 2010 program in such significant examples as the following: continued emphasis on multiscale modeling and bridging scales, focus on numeric and physics issues in modeling, emphasis on differential verification and validation (V&V), and work on developing a suite of standard validation metrics for the computer codes and simulations.
The previous ARLTAB report1 suggested that WMRD had not appeared to be striking an appropriate balance between experiment and computational efforts, with too little emphasis on computational and modeling areas. During the 2009-2010 reviews, the balance was found to have improved considerably.
The degree of integration of modeling and simulation with testing and evaluation (T&E) has increased substantially over the past 2 years. Significant progress was evident in the extent to which a balanced view of both modeling and experimental verification was included in most topics; this more effective integration is very positive and should be encouraged. In contrast to previous reviews, for the projects reviewed in 2009-2010 computations were more intimately connected to the research effort—a positive and noteworthy change. There was also greater recognition of the need for V&V. Modeling at different length scales is important, and WMRD evinced positive signs in this area in both the protec-