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An Assessment of Undersea Weapons Science and Technology
STRATEGY OF THE OFFICE OF NAVAL RESEARCH
The committee was given information on ONR's current strategy for S&T. The strategy includes a continuation of fundamental research (6.1), applied research (6.2), and advanced technology development (6.3). To facilitate the transition to efforts in higher budget categories, about half of the 6.2 and most of the 6.3 effort will be concentrated in areas corresponding to budgetary spikes supporting Future Naval Capabilities (FNCs).5 The FNCs are chosen by a top-level Navy and Marine Corps board, and the corresponding S&T is defined in detail by integrated product teams. The spikes are to have approximately 3- to 5-year lifetimes and include scheduled milestones.
The current ONR undersea weapons S&T program includes elements that support several of the FNCs, notably littoral antisubmarine warfare and platform protection.6The ONR strategy also identifies S&T programs (mainly 6.1 and 6.2) that address National Naval Needs, which constitute a national naval responsibility. It is understood that National Naval Needs should have continuity and a stable budget.
The processes for executing this strategy are under way. While the undersea weapons S&T program has not yet been identified as a National Naval Need, a major motive for the present study is to examine whether it should be so identified.
Chapter 2 of this report contains the committee's assessment of the existing ONR undersea weapons S&T program, following the aforementioned torpedo-related categories into which the program's budget is divided. The chapter also reviews the program from the point of view of the issues listed in the terms of reference and attempts to answer the two questions posed there. Chapter 3 contains the committee's views on the future of the Navy's undersea weapons in a broad context not limited to torpedoes. Findings, conclusions, and recommendations are presented in Chapter 4.
RADM Paul G. Gaffney II, USN, Director, Test and Evaluation and Technology Requirements. Future Naval Capabilities Fiscal Guidance – Information Memorandum, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations (N91), The Pentagon, Washington, D.C., November 23, 1999.
Outside the S&T program, platform-related acquisition programs, e.g., submarines and DD-21, can also affect the Navy undersea warfare funding structure.