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CHIPS Articles: Speeding innovative technology to the fleet and field

Speeding innovative technology to the fleet and field
By Sharon Anderson - April-June 2018
Are you quick to embrace the latest IT devices and high-tech breakthroughs — even experimenting with them in ways that were not initially envisioned?

Do you like to live on the very bleeding-edge of technology developments to see where they lead in terms of greater capabilities, efficiencies and security?

The Department of the Navy is a lot like you.

The DON is heavily invested in research and development of new technologies and speeding them to the fleet and field for warfighting advantage.

In this issue, we look at just a sampling of the advanced technologies being pursued across the DON and Defense Department, including: cyber, advanced computing, big data analytics, artificial intelligence, robotics, autonomy, miniaturization, additive manufacturing, quantum information, human-machine teaming, and directed energy and hypersonics.

From increasing warfighting lethality to business reform, the DON is on course to further expand innovation and drive a culture of agility, accountability and learning for the workforce, said Under Secretary of the Navy Thomas B. Modly in his remarks in the keynote address for the Sea-Air-Space 2018 Exposition, April 10.

Citing challenges to the nation’s security and prosperity, which include an array of threats, from great power competition to international terrorist organizations, Under Secretary Modly’s focus is on building more lethal platforms, a more lethal and flexible workforce, and ensuring maritime superiority.

“The United States Navy and Marine Corps must, and will, rise to this challenge — and we will do so by building a bigger, better, more networked, more talented, and more ready force.”

In lockstep with the tenets of the National Defense Strategy, the DON will investment in defensive capabilities to “ensure freedom of navigation, disaster relief and humanitarian assistance, and the application of lethal power if necessary,” Modly said.

Modly is in a dual-hat role and serves as Chief Management Officer of the department. He said the DON “…[Will] place a renewed emphasis on transforming our business mission area to incorporate 21st century management methods and uses of technology that improve visibility and accountability to inform better risk-based decision making, and emphasize agility over bureaucracy.”

He explained that the Secretariat is taking an enterprise view of improvements for end-to-end business processes and business systems investments to ensure financial auditability, better performance and affordability.

Under Secretary Modly intends to:

• Develop an enterprise business systems strategy that finally rationalizes the antiquated systems environment we operate today.

• Take lessons learned from our first audit to drive business improvement priorities — not just audit-related ones.

• Implement business reforms that yield significant savings — not merely incremental ones — in order to free up capital to fund our large capital requirements.

• Leverage big data strategies to address major operational issues in our supply chain and human capital management.

• Drive a culture of agility, accountability and learning for our people.

In this edition, we also have an informative interview with Commanding Officer, Naval Supply Systems Command Business Systems Center Capt. Douglas M. Bridges Jr., Supply Corps, who discusses Navy Business Intelligence Services.

Welcome new e-subscribers!
Sharon Anderson

Sharon Anderson is the CHIPS senior editor. She can be reached at

Cover photo: PENDLETON, Calif. (July 9, 2016) U.S. Marines Pfc. Edgar Langle and Lance Cpl. Ricardo Talavera, both infantry Marines with Kilo Company, 3rd Battalion 5th Marine Regiment, conduct a foot patrol with the Modular Advanced Armed Robotic System during an exercise for Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory's Marine Air-Ground Task Force Integrated Experiment on Camp Pendleton, Calif. The Warfighting Lab identifies possible challenges of the future, develops new warfighting concepts, and tests new ideas to help develop equipment that meets the challenges of the future operating environment. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Pfc. Rhita Daniel/Released
SAN DIEGO, California (Sep. 14, 2015) Lt. Jeff Kee explores the Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored Battlespace Exploitation of Mixed Reality (BEMR) lab located at Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific. BEMR is designed to showcase and demonstrate cutting edge low cost commercial mixed reality, virtual reality and augmented reality technologies and to provide a facility where warfighters, researchers, government, industry and academia can collaborate. U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams/Released
VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Sep. 30, 2016) An unmanned rigid-hull inflatable boat operates autonomously during an Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored demonstration of swarmboat technology held at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story. During the demonstration four boats, using an ONR-sponsored system called CARACaS (Control Architecture for Robotic Agent Command Sensing), operated autonomously during various scenarios designed to identify, trail or track a target of interest. U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams/Released
Under Secretary of the Navy Thomas B. Modly’s delivers remarks for the final Sea-Air-Space 2018 Exposition luncheon keynote address, April 10, 2018.
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