Aligning Needs, Technologies, and Resources for Special Operations
Contributing USMA Research Unit(s)
Proceedings of the Annual General Donald R. Keith Memorial Conference
USSOCOM equips its warfighters with cutting-edge technology to ensure they have a tactical edge over their adversaries. Special Forces encompasses a wide array of military operations; as such, they have numerous areas of interest (AoI) for technology investment. Companies submit proposals aligned with these AoIs following a Broad Agency Announcement (BAA). Currently, USSOCOM decides which projects get funded based on the perceived military value. However, this process is arbitrary and does not account for the state of technology. This paper analyzes the BAA from 2019 to identify critical technologies (CT) that will solve USSOCOM’s needs. These CTs are analyzed through Technology Readiness Level (TRL) to capture the state of the given technology. A trade space analysis tool plots the TRL against the importance of the technology, which can be leveraged to aid decision making in prioritization. This process provides numerous benefits over traditional approaches; additionally, there is an opportunity to automate this process.
Harrison, Kennedy CDT'19; White, Josh CDT'19; Giovinco, Tyler CDT'19; Jurado, Jaritzel CDT'19; and Mittal, Vikram, "Aligning Needs, Technologies, and Resources for Special Operations" (2019). West Point Research Papers. 370.
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