SPEAKERS CONTENTS INSERTS
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[H.A.S.C. No. 10826]
NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACT
FOR FISCAL YEAR 2005H.R. 4200
OVERSIGHT OF PREVIOUSLY AUTHORIZED PROGRAMS
COMMITTEE ON ARMED SERVICES
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED EIGHTH CONGRESS
STRATEGIC FORCES SUBCOMMITTEE HEARINGS
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TITLE IIRESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT, TEST, AND EVALUATION
TITLE XGENERAL PROVISIONS
TITLE XXXIDEPARTMENT OF ENERGY NATIONAL SECURITY PROGRAMS
TITLE XXXIIDEFENSE NUCLEAR FACILITIES SAFETY BOARD
FEBRUARY 25, MARCH 18, 25, 2004
STRATEGIC FORCES SUBCOMMITTEE
TERRY EVERETT, Alabama, Chairman
MAC THORNBERRY, Texas
CURT WELDON, Pennsylvania
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
ROB BISHOP, Utah
MICHAEL TURNER, Ohio
MIKE ROGERS, Alabama
TRENT FRANKS, Arizona
Page 3 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOCSILVESTRE REYES, Texas
JOHN SPRATT, South Carolina
LORETTA SANCHEZ, California
ELLEN O. TAUSCHER, California
KENDRICK MEEK, Florida
TIM RYAN, Ohio
Bob Lautrup, Professional Staff Member
Hugh Brady, Professional Staff Member
Katherine Croft, Staff Assistant
C O N T E N T S
CHRONOLOGICAL LIST OF HEARINGS
Wednesday, February 25, 2004, Fiscal Year 2005 National Defense Authorization ActBudget Request for Space Activities
Wednesday, February 25, 2004
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2004
FISCAL YEAR 2005 NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACTBUDGET REQUEST FOR SPACE ACTIVITIES
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STATEMENTS PRESENTED BY MEMBERS OF CONGRESS
Everett, Hon. Terry, a Representative from Alabama, Chairman, Strategic Forces Subcommittee
Reyes, Hon. Silvestre, a Representative from Texas, Ranking Member, Strategic Forces Subcommittee
Teets, Hon. Peter B., Under Secretary of the Air Force, Accompanied by Lt. Gen. Larry Dodgen, USA, Commander, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command; Gen. Lance Lord, USAF, Commander, Space and Missile Systems Command, Air Force Space Command; Rear Adm. Rand Fisher, USN, Director, Naval Space Technology Programs, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command Space Field Activity; and Brig. Gen. John Thomas, USMC, Director, Command, Control, Communications, and Computers (C4), and Chief Information Officer (CIO), U.S. Marine Corps
Everett, Hon. Terry
Teets, Hon. Peter B.
DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
Page 5 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC[The Documents submitted can be viewed in the hard copy.]
QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS SUBMITTED FOR THE RECORD:
[The Questions and Answers can be viewed in the hard copy.]
FISCAL YEAR 2005 NATIONAL DEFENSE AUTHORIZATION ACTBUDGET REQUEST FOR SPACE ACTIVITIES
House of Representatives,
Committee on Armed Services,
Strategic Forces Subcommittee,
Washington, DC, Wednesday, February 25, 2004.
The subcommittee met, pursuant to call, at 2 p.m., in room 2212, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Terry Everett (chairman of the subcommittee) Presiding.
OPENING STATEMENT OF HON. TERRY EVERETT, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM ALABAMA, CHAIRMAN, STRATEGIC FORCES SUBCOMMITTEE
Mr. EVERETT. The hearing will come to order.
The subcommittee is meeting today to receive testimony on the Department of Defense space programs in its fiscal year 2005 budget request for space activities.
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I want to welcome Peter Teets, who is testifying today as the head of national security space programs. I also want to welcome, seated behind Secretary Teets, the service space program head representing the Air Force, General Lance Lord, Commander, Air Force space program; for the Army, Lieutenant General Larry Dodgen, Commander, Space and Missile Defense Command; from the Navy, Rear Admiral Rand Fisher, Space and Naval Warfare Systems, Command Director; and finally, Brigadier General John Thomas, Director of Command, Control, Communications, and Computers (C4), and Chief Information Officer for the Marine Corps.
Following Secretary Teets' remarks, I invite you to join him at the witness table as committee members ask questions.
We have a great deal of ground to cover today. I want to allow each of our members a great opportunityas much opportunity as possible to ask questions, so I will be brief.
Likewise I will ask you, Mr. Secretary, to be brief with your opening and prepared remarks. The entirety of your written statement will be entered into the record.
This is the second gathering of this panel led by Under Secretary Teets. He is the first person to serve as the overall head of national security space programs. Consolidation of space activities under a single executive agency was a strong recommendation of the Space Commission. On the one hand, the Secretary oversees the area of technology that is rapidly growing in importance and, on the other hand, he has inherited many space programs that have experienced growth, cost growth and schedule delays. These issues are of paramount concern to this committee and to the Congress as an institution.
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When we last met one year ago, we were at the lessons learned stage of coming off the major conflict, Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. Now we have come full circle and have further applied these precious space resources to another conflict, Operation Iraqi Freedom. Our success in these difficult missions would not be possible without the space-based capabilities used by the witnesses who appear before you here today.
The Secretary faces the institutional hurdle of better integrating military and Intelligence Community space activities, which promises to benefit both user communities as well as provide more valuable service to the taxpayer. Are we using these resources to the best of our abilities? If not, Mr. Secretary I would ask you today, how is it that Congress can help you use them better?
Further, Secretary Teets is faced with the difficulty of maintaining assured access to space while transitioning from legacy space boosters to a new family of expendable launch vehicles. And this comes during a period when reduced commercial losses place additional financial pressures on both suppliers.
Finally, another challenge highlighted almost daily in the press is a planned transition from existing space-based communications systems to a new transformational communication system based on laser interconnection. This system is to provide the increased information handling capability of our future forces requirement. The bottom line is that it is very difficult to see how with the constrained resources available we will be able to adequately fund maintenance of existing capabilities while fielding further image architecture and developing competitive future systems like space-based radar and the transformation of communications systems satellites.
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At this time, I would like to recognize my friend and ranking member, Mr. Reyes, for any comments he would make.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Everett can be viewed in the hard copy.]
STATEMENT OF HON. SILVESTRE REYES, A REPRESENTATIVE FROM TEXAS, RANKING MEMBER, STRATEGIC FORCES SUBCOMMITTEE
Mr. REYES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
I want to join you in welcoming our distinguished witness, Under Secretary of the Air Force, Mr. Teets. I also want to welcome the top military officer on space matters from each of our services. We appreciate your service and the service that you provide our country, and we particularly appreciate your taking time from your busy schedules to be here with us today.
Space assets have become vital to our warfighters. Our command, control and communications systems depend on them. They are critical to the performance of our position-guided munitions. Our various satellite systems provide our warriors in the field, in the air, and at sea with vital intelligence in real time or on a near real-time basis. And as we rely more and more on unmanned systems and move to lighter and more mobile communities, like our Stryker Brigades on the future combat system, secured transmission of accurate intelligence becomes ever much more important. Clearly, our reliance on space will only increase in the future.
Page 9 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Our witnesses will present highlights of the 2005 budget and that request, but I hope our witnesses and my colleagues can focus on two programs in particular: The space-based radar called SBR and the transformational communications system, or TSAT. TSAT has entered the design phase and transitioning in the latter stages of concept definition; in other words, they were moving from being grand ideas that exist primarily in viewgraphs to becoming real-life programs.
Not surprisingly, as these programs become more tangible, they become ever more costly. The request for SBRs is $328 million for 2005, up $155 million, which is about 90 percent more from the 2004 level of $173 million. The Pentagon cost analysis improvement group estimates that fielding, maintaining and operating a nine-satellite SBR constellation with one spare will cost about $34 billion through 2026 in constant 2004 dollars. And a nine-satellite constellation will not give optimum performance because there will be gaps in its coverage. Twenty-one satellites are believed to be needed to prevent these gaps, but no cost estimate is available for a constellation of that size to date.
Likewise, TSAT promises to be very expensive. The 2005 budget request for TSAT is $775 million, up $439 million, or about 131 percent, from the 2004 level of $335 million. No total cost estimate for TSAT has even been worked up by our Pentagon.
By highlighting the cost of these programs, I am not trying to imply that we should not be pursuing them, but there is no denying that these costs are significant, even among other things by Department of Defense (DOD) standards.
As SBR and TSAT move closer to selecting the contracting teams, Congress I believe, has a duty to closely evaluate these programs. I hope Secretary Teets and our other witnesses place special emphasis on these programs when laying out the budget request.
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I also hope our witnesses can talk about what efforts are being taken to reduce the cost of operating in space. In my mind this involves two parallel tracksreducing the cost of launching satellites into space and then reducing the weight of our satellites. The two, I think, are clearly tied together.
I hope our witnesses will describe to us what they are doing to determine whether smaller, lighter satellites are a viable alternative to the ''fat sats'' that we have traditionally become used to and how much funding they are dedicating to these efforts in the 2005 budget.
Finally, I would like to hear more on what we are doing to understand the vulnerabilities of our satellites and what plans the Department may have to put both offensive and defensive weapons capabilities in space. Since we are in open session today, it is not the best day to have that discussion.
However, Mr. Chairman, I would like to ask both you and our witnesses to commit to having a closed briefing on these matters prior to markup. Besides the technology and the cost issues involved, putting weapons, either offensive or defensive, into space is a major policy decision. Congress should be a full and equal partner in that decision-making process.
Mr. Chairman, I thank you for calling this important hearing as we have a lot of ground to cover. I look forward to hearing from our distinguished witnesses. Thank you.
Mr. EVERETT. Thank you. We certainly will have that closed hearing.
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I would like to add to that some discussion on Global Positioning System (GPS). And that is a problem we may be facing with GPS. This subcommittee saw the wisdom, and the full committee; I think our add last year was either $30 or $40 million to jump-start GPS3, and we didn't get that money appropriated. And in light of Galileo coming online, I am not sure they will get it online as quickly as they think they will get it online, but nevertheless I think it is important that we again try to jump-start our GPS3 to cover some of the problems that exist in the GPS current system.
Also, I would like, without objection, to add to the record a list of civilian uses of GPS that are important not only on the military side, but how important it is to the world we live in.
Mr. Secretary, you are on. Looking forward to your testimony.
[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
STATEMENT OF THE HON. PETER B. TEETS, UNDER SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE, ACCOMPANIED BY LT. GEN. LARRY DODGEN, USA, COMMANDER, U.S. ARMY SPACE AND MISSILE DEFENSE COMMAND; GEN. LANCE LORD, USAF, COMMANDER, SPACE AND MISSILE SYSTEMS COMMAND, AIR FORCE SPACE COMMAND; REAR ADM. RAND FISHER, USN, DIRECTOR, NAVAL SPACE TECHNOLOGY PROGRAMS, SPACE AND NAVAL WARFARE SYSTEMS COMMAND SPACE FIELD ACTIVITY; AND BRIG. GEN. JOHN THOMAS, USMC, DIRECTOR, COMMAND, CONTROL, COMMUNICATIONS, AND COMPUTERS (C4), AND CHIEF INFORMATION OFFICER (CIO), U.S. MARINE CORPS
Page 12 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Secretary TEETS. Mr. Chairman and distinguished members of the committee, thank you for the opportunity to appear before you today to discuss the President's budget request for fiscal year 2005 national security space programs.
I am particularly honored to be here in the presence of these distinguished military service leaders that are seated behind me. I have worked closely with them over the course of my tenure, and I believe that does indeed underscore the importance that we place on jointness in our national security space efforts. We have worked hard together, as a team, to define a way ahead that will provide a strong national security space program that meets the needs of all the military services and the Intelligence Community.
The President's budget request, along with our efforts to develop and maintain our team of space professionals, will enable us to sustain America's preeminence in space. In my multiple roles as the Department of Defense's Executive Agent for Space, Under Secretary of the Air Force, and the Director of the National Reconnaissance Office, I have set five priorities for our national security space efforts for 2004. They are:
One, achieving mission success in operations and acquisition;
Two, developing and maintaining a team of space professionals;
Three, integrating space capabilities for national intelligence and warfighting;
Four, producing innovative solutions for the most challenging national security problems; and.
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Five, ensuring freedom of action in space.
These priorities have shaped the fiscal year 2005 budget for our DOD space programs, and I see substantial improvement in capabilities in every mission area as we recapitalize our space assets in the years ahead.
The funding requested in the President's budget for fiscal year 2005 allows us to evolve capabilities in current constellations while planned investments in new systems will provide significant increases in performance, supporting the full range of intelligence and military operations to include the Global War on Terrorism.
We are aggressively pursuing two major initiatives that will deliver transformational capabilities to military and intelligence operations. First, the transformational communications architecture will provide vast improvements in data rates, expanded accesses, communications on the move, and threats-protocol-based connectivity. As a part of that architecture, TSAT will be a revolutionary change in satellite communications for the warfighter and for national intelligence users and is an enabler of horizontal integration allowing our fighting forces to have near-real-time intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance at their fingertips.
TSAT will provide an unprecedented connectivity with Internet-like capability that extends the global information grid to deployed and mobile users worldwide and will deliver an order of magnitude increase in capacity. The program entered design phase this past month. As a result, we recently awarded two contracts to competing bidders for risk reduction and design development. We plan to launch the first TSAT in November, 2011.
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Second, we are moving to more persistent surveillance with space-based radar and other innovative capabilities. Space-based radar will provide a start on persistent global situational awareness and target tracking capability as part of a horizontally integrated DOD-wide and national system of systems. Radar from space will provide day, night, all-weather, worldwide, multitheater surveillance on demand.
In fiscal year 2005, we plan to focus on consent definition, risk reduction, and systems engineering activities, all leading to a system requirements review in the third quarter of fiscal year 2005 and system design review as early as fiscal year 2006. These activities are part of the study which will culminate in a select award and an entered design phase in mid-fiscal year 2006.
As I look over our total national security space program, there are areas that require our vigilant attention, and we plan to work these areas hard in the coming months, placing emphasis on each of these areas in future budget deliberations.
For some of our constellations our replenishment strategy provides very little margin if there is a launch failure or a premature on-orbit failure or a significant program delay. While I am confident in the systems we are developing, true capability is the result of end-to-end performance in support of the user. Greater emphasis is needed on synchronization of fielding ground and air receivers and terminals to match on-orbit capabilities.
The aggressive DOD and Intelligence Community horizontal integration effort to better integrate and exploit ground, air and space remote sensing capabilities remains a priority for us. We have taken steps to strengthen the acquisition process for national security space programs, but there is still much to do. We are committed to building credible management reserves into our acquisition programs so that program managers will have resources available to solve problems in a timely way.
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Mission success in all phases of space operations and acquisition continues to be my highest priority. We made steady progress on space programs during the past year, and the President's fiscal year 2005 budget request, along with our efforts to enhance the space profession, will enable us to continue that progress.
I very much appreciate the continued support the Congress and this committee have given to help deliver these vital capabilities. I look forward to working with you as we continue to develop, produce, launch, and operate critical space systems that deliver vital capabilities to this great Nation.
Mr. Chairman, this concludes my opening remarks. I look forward to your questions.
[The prepared statement of Secretary Teets can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. EVERETT. Thank you, Mr. Secretary.
At this point, before we proceed with questions, I would ask everybody on the panel to join the Secretary at the table. I remind members that we are on the five-minute rule, but we will be here as long as there are questions to be asked.
Mr. Secretary, I will get things started by pointing out that our space programs have been plagued by schedule slips and cost increases. And I would like to know what has been done to ensure that the future programs remain on schedule and within expected costs.
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Secretary TEETS. Yes, Mr. Chairman. We have had an aggressive activity ongoing to revamp and revitalize our space acquisition efforts. One of the early steps that came about as a result of the recommendations of the National Space Commission was to move our acquisition authority in the Air Force Space and Missile Center under the banner of Air Force Space Command. And in addition to that, as we looked over the total aggregate of space systems that we were in the process of acquiring, we put out a new National Security Space Acquisition Directive; it is a directive known as 0301. It is an acquisition process really that is tailored after practices used and developed over the years by the National Reconnaissance Office under something called Directive 7.
What it does is, it tailors an acquisition process for our national security space programs that recognize the important differences in acquiring space systems from acquiring high production rate quantities of military equipment like, for example, airplanes or tanks or one thing or another. And so what it does is it causes us to be able to focus great attention on a program early on to make certain that the programs are structured properly, that they have the proper systems engineering trade studies done early on, that as we start to meet these requirements and go through the acquisition process, we have enough solid engineering work behind them.
I think this acquisition process called 0301, the national security space acquisition process, has been helpful to us in formulating both the space-based radar program and the TSAT program that we spoke of earlier.
Mr. EVERETT. And you placed all this responsibility in the capable hands of General Lord?
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Secretary TEETS. General Lord is in charge of Air Force Space Command, indeed.
Mr. EVERETT. Congratulations, General. We will be looking for you to deliver on all of that.
General LORD. May I add a little bit to what the Secretary said?
I think a couple of things that we have done in the command under his leadership as Under Secretary have certainly helped to pay offone, absolutely. The transition of the acquisition arm to us in Air Force Space Command has really helped. He and I had a joint relationship with the folks with the acquisition chain. What we have done in headquarters has helped. And so to make sure that our requirements process was stabilized, so that we don't keep changing requirements on the people that are building the hardware, we established what we call an urgent and compelling requirements review process where, if you want to change a requirement that would interrupt the baseline of a program, you need to have a pretty urgent and compelling reason to do that, so that we don't have those wild gyrations in program baseline which create the difficulty.
We have done a good job of that. With Mr. Teets' support we have been able to have that urgent compelling process help us.
If you take a look at how we are doing requirements in the space-based infrared program, the SBIRS, for example, we have a set of 10 evolving capabilities that will occur over the system. We have held fairly constant to that. I think it has paid off in terms of program stability.
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So those are things we have been working within the community and with our colleagues and the other services to make sure that we absolutely can state affirmatively what we want requirements-wise, and be able to deliver on that and make sure we can stabilize the program.
Mr. EVERETT. I congratulate you on not adding to the baseline of the project. Apparently, you have taken note of the Comanche aircraft over the years and the baseline has been added and added and added.
I didn't start the clock, so I will yield my time.
Mr. REYES. I have just a couple of areas that I want to explore. The first one is, how well do we expect the selective moving target indicator (SMTI) function of SBR to perform? And I want you to discuss not only what we expect it to do, but what mission SBR will not be able to perform. And then I have a follow-up dealing with Iraq.
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir. Now, just to make certain that we are very much on the same wavelength, when you say SBR, it is space-based radar. There is another program; there is a sister program called (SBIRS) space-based infrared system high and SBIRS low, which is space-based infrared high and low.
But your question is referring to space-based radar?
Mr. REYES. Right.
Page 19 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Secretary TEETS. We see space-based radar as being a technology that is now mature enough for us to be able to field and deploy a system that can give us a start on persistent surveillance capability. This persistent surveillance will be in the form of both surface moving target indicationsthat is to say, from space you can detect moving targets and display them to a user in the field; and if, on demand, you want to take a synthetic aperture radar image of that target, you can.
So since radar has the unique capability of being able to see through clouds, to be able to image or do surface moving target indications at night, you can start now to see the effects that you can achieve by having some persistence in your surveillance activities. That is the big driving factor behind the desire to field a space-based radar capability.
It will tip and cue air assets that are already in place, also doing surface moving target indications, as well as synthetic aperture radar imaging. That is to say, Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) aircraft sometimes have to operate in an environment where they can't see down into valleys or can't directly follow targets as they are moving. Space-based radar will be able to tip and cue. Similarly, it will receive tips and cues from JSTARS.
So we see this whole space-based radar system unfolding in a way that will give us real networking capability and real capability to service all warfighters in the field.
Mr. REYES. And I was in Iraq a couple of weekends ago. I was wondering, if space-based radar were in operation today, how much help would it provide our troops, for instance, in areas like Baghdad, Al-Falluja, those urban areas; and would it be able to give us the kind of information that will protect them from possible attacks?
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Secretary TEETS. It would certainly assist.
Now, space-based radar is not at its best in an urban environment. However, when troops are on the move, as they certainly were during the initial days of this warfighting activity, and fast on the move up to Baghdad, space-based radar would be of invaluable assistance because it would give you clear indications of enemy troop movements and locations of enemy troops in advance of your advancing forces.
And as a matter of fact, during that initial phase of the war in Iraq, JSTARS and the capability that it gave through synthetic aperture imagery was able to look right through the sandstorms, identify positions of Iraqi tanks and mobile personnel carriers, and provided unquestionable assistance. Space-based radar would give that same kind of assistance on a broader area.
Mr. REYES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. SPRATT. Thank you all for your testimony.
I have been following for some time SBIRS high and SBIRS low in the nature of missile defense. It has been a very elusive technology. I think it was about 5, 6 years ago I was in California, and when the contractors for the SBIRS high program presented it to us, it looked shipshape. They were saying they might even begin launching ahead of schedule. That was 5 years ago.
Page 21 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC I understand now that for SBIRS high the schedule for the first launch is sometime in 2007. And that is a slip of 5 years from the original schedule.
On the cost side, SBIRS high, according to the first selected acquisition report, was supposed to be $3.6 billion for the system. It is up to $7.85 billion. That is a 120 percent increase.
There are some outside critics who are looking at these programs, particularly the TSAT, and saying that your technology is not yet mature enough to be moving as fast as you are talking about deployment.
The General Accounting Office says that you don't have enough knowledge to reliably establish cost schedule and performance goals. And they say that the underlying technology is simply too immature to establish those, and you are pushing it far too fast.
How do you respond to those critics? How do we avoid the cost experience of performance experience and schedule experience we have with SBIRS high?
Secretary TEETS. Thank you, sir. Let me start by talking a little bit about the SBIRS high program that you referred to earlier. The facts and figures as you espoused them were, I think, essentially very accurate. It is not a program that has been executed with distinction up to this point in time.
In December of 2001, as a matter of fact within 2 weeks of the time I was sworn in, the Air Force notified the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition Technology and Logistics that a Nunn-McCurdy breach was in effect, or I will say a Nunn-McCurdy breach was predicted for the SBIRS high program at that point in time. Under Secretary Aldridge then notified Congress of a Nunn-McCurdy breach.
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We went through a very significant, intensive review of where the SBIRS high program was and what the alternatives were for how to look at possibly terminating the program and picking up an alternative. We found the program was very ill structured. There were contract clauses in the contract that were not appropriate. Too much responsibility, very frankly, had been handed over to the contractor, and the government was not providing necessary oversight to the program.
We looked at some alternatives that involved using some capabilities that had been developed in the National Reconnaissance Office. We compared that to the possibility of restructuring the SBIRS high program. We came to a conclusion in the spring of 2002, then, that the SBIRS high program would be best served by being restructured with additional resources added to it. And you kind of quoted what those additional resources were that eventually got added to it. Secretary Aldridge recertified the program as being the restructured alternative being superior to trying to start over to provide this capability.
Now, I want to just pause and say that the capability that SBIRS high provides is vitally important. It is the follow-on system to our DSP, or Defense Support Program, the SBIRS high program that will give us continuing early warning of strategic missile attack. And these are systems that must be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, all the time, to give us early knowledge of strategic missile launch.
Mr. SPRATT. If I could interrupt you. That is the point. This is one of the most, if not the most important, satellite project we are launchingcritically important and also pretty complex as evidenced by the schedule slippage and the performance problems that you have had to go back and rearrange.
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Given that, how can we be assured that you aren't moving too fast here and committing the same mistakes that you committed with SBIRS high?
Secretary TEETS. When we restructured the program, we added a significant amount of test content. We reviewedwith independent peoplewe reviewed a relook at a cost estimate, an independent cost estimate. We looked at the content of the test program, essentially restructured the program in a very meaningful way.
Now, I want to hasten to tell you that we have made a lot of progress in the last 2 years on the SBIRS high program, but we are facing some adversity today.
Mr. SPRATT. Are you going to be able to launch by 2007?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir, we will be able to launch our first two highly elliptical orbit sensors before that. But I do want to say we are still facing some adversity.
The problem that we have encountered since we have restructured the program is that these two highly elliptical orbit sensors ride on a host satellite that has very tight electromagnetic interference specifications imposed upon it. And we have faced some adversity in the fact that this sensor, which has a scanning mode, does emanate some electromagnetic interference that is harmful to the host satellite. As a result, we have had to do some redesign activity. It has slowed us down some, but we are making excellent progress.
Page 24 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC I reviewed the SBIRS high program quarterly with the Presidents of Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin. I also have monthly reviews with the Commander of the Space and Missile Center, General Brian Arnolds. As a matter of fact, Friday of this week we will have a President's review of this program.
We have focused enormous attention on this program. While it is still technologically challenging, I am confident that we are on a solid course and that we will be able to deliver a SBIRS program that can indeed, pick up when DSP starts to fade.
Mr. EVERETT. The gentleman's time has expired. We will come back.
Mr. TURNER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
And looking at your testimony concerning partnership with NASA, I am particularly interested in the effort of the President's Commission on implementation of the United States space exploration policy. They have scheduled their second hearing, the commission has, at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in my district. And certainly with Wright-Patterson Air Force Base as the leading edge in representation in technology advancing sciences, the coordination of the Air Force and other research labs in NASA is very interesting to me.
You reflect in your testimony Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the Air Force research labs, the Navy research labs, and NASA are working in partnership with space exploration as to how this technology might be helpful as you look to other systems. Could you please elaborate on that? And also could you reference the Partnership Council and its role in working with the President's Council.
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Secretary TEETS. Yes. Then I will ask General Lord, who also serves on this same Partnership Council, to perhaps add some thoughts of his own if he would.
Several years ago we formed a Partnership Council that was made up of myself; General Lord; Sean O'Keefe, NASA Administrator; Ron Sega, who is in the Department of Defense; and Admiral Ellis, Commander of United States Strategic Command. This Partnership Council meets quarterly, and we talk about howin the national security space world how we can cooperate between NASA, Air Force, Navy, Army STRATCOM, military services, and frankly, the Intelligence Community.
I am on this Partnership Council. One of the reasons I am on it is because I am Director of the National Reconnaissance Office. So we bring that same kind of a capability and focus to this Partnership Council.
What we have focused our efforts on is mutual technology development that we can all benefit from. NASA has some very unique challenges in front of it that are associated with manned space flight. Those of us in the military and Intelligence Community, national security space, really don't have manned space flight requirements per se. So there are some differences, of course, but where it comes together is in the technology development arena. We share the technology that is going on in DOD and the Intelligence Community, along with what is going on in NASA, and partner that way.
General Lord, I ask you for a comment.
Page 26 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC General LORD. Thank you for the question. We have been meeting periodically since 1997 with NASA on a quarterly basis in Air Force Space Command. My predecessors have met with the previous Administrator, prior to O'Keefe and just as Mr. Teets said, to talk about mutual areas.
The previous administration said that in the rocket business NASA would work renewable technologies, Air Force would work expendable technologies as a principal interest; but we do have a healthy cross-interest in each other's capability. So we have been working those very hard. As a matter of fact, I testified a couple of times to our partnership and development of those programs.
Major General Nielsen, the commander of the Air Force Research Lab, myself, General Martin Attermand there at Wright-Patterson, we meet quarterly as well to talk about an enterprise approach to this and working hard and comparing working technologies.
All the Air Force astronauts in Houston, 125, are assigned to Air Force Space Command. So we have an interest in bringing back Air Force astronauts to bring that rich experience of operating in the medium of space back to the command. Colonel Susan Helms, the Director of Space Control, spent 6 months in the International Space Station, so she brought back to our command a wealth of informationso not only at the technology level, but also at the person-to-person level, experience operating in the medium of space, and healthy interaction.
We were involved in the return to flight criteria to refly the Shuttle. We have been actively involved in helping NASA and helping the Administrator through that. Also our future breakthroughs as we talk about what we need to do in lower cost access to space, we are both interested in how we can do that. And Mr. Teets and the Administrator have asked us to continue to work that very hard.
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We have a healthy interest in continuing to work together.
Mr. TURNER. I appreciate that.
In looking at the President's Commission as they go forward, I know that many of the decisions or recommendations might have impact on things that you are undertaking. So it is certainly encouraging that you are working in concert so that all those interests can be reflected. Thank you.
Mr. EVERETT. Mr. Franks.
Mr. FRANKS. Mr. Secretary, thank you for coming, all of you gentlemen. We appreciate what I call the ''guardians of freedom,'' you not only guard freedom for the United States but really, in a sense, the whole of humanity. We are grateful to you.
Having said that, I know that this SBIRS program is probably one of our first-line defenses as far as maintaining contact with what is happening on the ground as far as early warning, and I am wondering what its capacity is to coordinate a response with, you know, a future strategic missile defense with any sort of response to what we might see on the ground.
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir.
The SBIRS high program, as a follow-on to the Defense Support Program, will provide very, very strong capability to tip off or cue the Missile Defense Agency with literal state vectors that are coming up from the launch of a strategic missile. So it is very definitely in the cuing mode. And it is SBIRS high that will provide significant improved capability over what can be done with today's system called DSP. We will give warning earlier and we will give a much more complete map of the trajectory that the missile in question is taking.
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Mr. FRANKS. As I understand, Mr. Secretary, that would be just a road map in the sky; it wouldn't be an actual coordinating device. It would coordinate the missile from the ground to the target; is that correct?
Secretary TEETS. That is correct. It would send information to the Missile Defense Agency of what the target is doing and where the target is heading. The Missile Defense Agency would then use that information in order to take it out.
Mr. FRANKS. I don't want to ask any question that might get into a classified area, but I am sure that as you build these systems, as you plan for them, one of the first considerations is where a likely attack might occur. It has been said that we are not always so worried about a country that has several nuclear warheads; we are worried about one idiot that has one.
Are you able to enlighten us all as to what you think might begiven just the difficulties of such insightwhat might be the first area of concern, the first consideration as far as early capability?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir, I can. Recognize now that both the Defense Support Program, DSP, and SBIRS high are passive sensors that are simply monitoring the launch of ballistic missiles, and that monitoring capability is essentially on a global basis. If you look at the satellites that are in geostationary orbit, coupled with those that are in the high elliptical orbit, you get essentially global coverage of missile alert.
Page 29 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Now, the Missile Defense Agency, led by Lieutenant General Ron Kadish, is in the process now of putting together an initial defense capability that is scheduled to come on line this calendar year with a first kind of a capability. I think the details of that are somewhat classified. And I think, frankly, that General Kadish would be the proper person to give you the details behind that.
Mr. FRANKS. So if I heard you right, Mr. Secretary, you are saying that the system is so much global in nature that it is not necessary for to you look for a specific area that you have.
Secretary TEETS. We will have global coverage knowledge of a launch against us. It will take a considerable length of time before the Missile Defense Agency will be in a position to take out a target emanating from virtually any part of the Earth.
Mr. FRANKS. Any missile capable of reaching a high enough trajectory to reach the United States in most areas would give off a distinctive enough signature that there would be no doubt of its nature; is that correct?
Secretary TEETS. That is correct. Of course, the more intercontinental it is, the more time that you have to deal with the threat.
Mr. FRANKS. I want to repeat my earlier remarks and how grateful we are to all of you. Thank you.
Mr. EVERETT. Mrs. Tauscher.
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Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Thank you for being here, gentlemen.
Under Secretary Teets, I agree with many of the objectives that you laid out in your testimony, especially assured launch and effective space programs that will aid our warfighters. But I am a little concerned about your discussion of a defensive counterspace.
In your testimony, you state that we will pursue a mix of capabilities to limit any adversary's ability to deny us free access to space and deny an adversary's use of space for offense possible purposes. Them is fighting words.
The Air Force transformation plan has made public this month a description of a number of near, mid, and long-term weapons or offensive platforms such as the air-launched antisatellite missile and the ground-based laser.
In as much detail as you can go into here, can you bring us up to date on what kind of threat or enemy we are posturing against and why do you believe this should be such a priority? What is our policy on the so-called ''weaponization of space''? Are you not concerned that the two weapons I mentioned would threaten both our allies and our own space assets? Since our military is growing more and more dependent on space, do we not have the most interest in reducing the prospect of any arms race in space?
Secretary TEETS. I believe it is safe to say that we have already seen the opening of hostile activities relative to space capabilities. In Iraq, as you undoubtedly know, the Iraqis tried to deny us the use of our global positioning satellite navigation system capability to deliver precision guided munitions. And fortunately, in this case, when we were able to overcome their attempts to deny us the capability and we maintained our capability to deliver precision guided munitions.
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But I think it is also clear that our adversaries around the world have taken note of the fact that we do derive a great advantage from the use of space assets. So it is natural for us at this point in time to recognize that we need to be working on and studying technologies and systems and capabilities that will allow us to defend ourselves against potential threats and at the same time allow us, if our forces are being targeted by an enemy's space capabilities, we need to have the capability to deny them the use of their space assets. So it is in that context that we are looking at a wide varietya wide range of potential capabilities and systems to provide, first of all, knowledge about what is up there in space.
There are some 10,000 objects in space. While we catalogue those in terms of orbital characteristics, we know precious little about many of them. We would like to know more. So we want a better situational awareness picture. We also then want to start to focus strong attention on defensive counterspace. And ultimately we need to think about how we would deny an adversary their use of being able to target our troops. And that is what we call ''offensive counterspace.''
Now, there are a lot of different ideas that are being studied, and all of them would be consistent with our current space policy applications. Some of them, as you say, offer downside risk in the sense that they could create debris in orbit. As a result our primary focus, and what we look at first is how could we deny them the use on a temporary basis without causing permanent damage. But for example, if a foreign commercial imagery satellite were being used to target our troops, what could we do to eliminate that capability but have it be a reversible effect, that is to say, temporarily deny the use. That is the way we are heading.
Page 32 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC And it is true that in our Air Force Research Laboratory, and other laboratories, people familiar with the technology have different ideas and put forth different concepts. And I guess I would ask General Lord to comment as well because General Lord is Commander of Air Force Space Command, in fact, has the Air Force space control mission assigned to him.
General LORD. Yes, ma'am. I appreciate the question.
I think Mr. Teets is quite right. Three areas of this mission of what we call space control: the situation awareness, understanding what is in the environment of space, which we have to do more of and work well on, so that we can be able to discriminate in the environment of space is this somebody trying to do something against us or is this an atmospheric effect, a solar flare or something that we need to be able to discriminate. So we need an understanding of the environment of space and who is up there and operating.
And the second piece then, taking some kind of defensive measure to make sure that not only do we work the satellite space of this, but the ground links and make sure we have all the vulnerabilities covered.
Then the last piece is the offensive counterspace piece. Those are kind of in our priority order, to do the things we need to do to deny somebody trying to use that to our advantage in reversible kinds of ways.
We will introduce some of our first counter-com capability this year in 2004 and then later on, in 2007 and 2008, the surveillance and reconnaissance capability that is a reversible kind of effect that generates an effect on an opponent system for a temporary basis and then resets after the threat is over with. And that is something that we want to take a look at.
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I think the whole mission area really speaks to the fact that, just as you mentioned, it is highly dependent uponboth militarily and economicallyfor us to maintain that advantage.
I think the real key to doing this mission successfully is working hard on the space situation awareness piece and taking those in that priority sequence and learning as much as we can about the environment, putting that all together and taking the right kind of steps to be defensive in nature. I think that is something that we can all participate in, both the commercial military and civil systems. It is important for everybody to work that together.
Mr. EVERETT. Congresswoman Wilson, before you start, at the request of the ranking member, we are going to have a closed hearing on the various subject that you want to talk about.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Good.
Mr. Chairman, if I would just say, I really appreciate your comments. I thought they were very fulsome comments. I know we have some barriers to discuss for classified reasons, but I really appreciate your effort to be as fulsome as you could be and talk about the benign opportunities. I appreciate that you have that right in your forefront. Thank you.
Mrs. WILSON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I wanted to thank you all for coming, but also to apologize for coming late. You all know how things get double- and triple-scheduled up here. But I appreciate the written testimony, which is very helpful to me.
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And what I wanted to ask you, and I am not sure who is the best person to answer this, but it has to do with new acquisition policies and whether we are at the point whereI have seen the discussions about spiraling acquisition and spinning things on and then going to 2.0 and 3.0 versions of particular systems.
I guess I would like to comment on the laws and the procedures relating to this process and where we are, where we need to be yet with acquisition. Particularly, what are your thoughts on how we need to modify acquisition policy to make this work, to make sure that we get the assurance that you are on schedule and you are on budget and it is doing what it is supposed to do, but also that we get things into the field or up into space and available to the warfighter in a rapid way?
It is something of an open question.
Secretary TEETS. I would be happy to take a first cut at it.
I think that one of the first things we recognized here over two years ago is that many of our space programs werefrom an acquisition point of viewin serious trouble and required additional resources to be able to restructure the programs and get them back on track. And we tried to take a hard look at, is there an acquisition process improvement that is required? And we came to the conclusion that, yes, there was.
As a result that is when we went to work pretty hard on the subject of this National Security Space Acquisition Directive, labeled 0301. And this directive tries to take into account the unique characteristics and difficulties associated with acquiring space systems. The fact that you are dealing now with a case of one strike and you are outif you are on the launch pad and you have a vehicle that is about to try to deliver a satellite into orbit and you have a failure there, it is all over; you do not get a second attempt at it.
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And so one of the things that we tried to do in building this new acquisition policy was to give recognition to the fact that mission success is the primary focus that you want to structure the program around, and that you want to have a strong systems engineering effort early on that creates a very robust test program to fully test all of these systems before they are put into service.
I think we have made good headway in that. And I don't want to say that our acquisition policy document is perfect. As a matter of fact, I think we have learned some lessons since first implementing it.
I look forward this year to being able to make some modifications to our acquisition policy 0301 which will further tune it and tailor it to the specific needs of these space systems that we are developing.
The other thing that we are trying hard to work onbut it is not easy to do; frankly, it is going to take some time to get it done. But I was aghast, to be candid with you, when I first came into this job and found that we had program managers trying to manage these very difficult, technologically complex programs with no program management reserve. It cannot be done. A program like SBIRS high, a program like future imaging architecture programs that are pushing the leading edge of technology cannot be successfully executed without having the program manager having discretionary resources to be able to apply the problems that inevitably will occur.
So we have instituted as part of this acquisition policy that I mentioned, or acquisition procedure directive that we have implemented, a requirement for independent cost analysis, a requirement at every Defense Space Acquisition Board meeting that we have, my first question to the program director is, What is the state of your program management reserve? How much discretionary resource do have you at your disposal? So when a problem arises in the contractor's test program or you finding out that you need a redesign in this or you have a bad part, a playing in the system, what kind of discretionary resource do you have to apply to this problem? And we have some guidelines, depending on how hard we are pushing technology, as to how much that reserve should be.
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So we have tried very hard to implement an improved technique. I will say, it is a daunting challenge. The fact that we are here today talking to you about an 2005 budget while we are actually executing 2004, at the same time, we are starting to worry about preparing the 2006 budget, makes it a real tough challenge. But I think we are making headway.
Mr. EVERETT. Mr. Thornberry.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I also apologize for being late. I have been chairing a Homeland Security subcommittee meeting during this time.
But really, Ms. Wilson raised the point that I was most interested in. Because we are so dependent and will be ever more so in space, it gives us great opportunities and yet just about every space program is behind and over budget and handicapping in some ways our ability to be as successful as we want.
Let me follow up with this: Do you think, Mr. Secretary, that we do not have the expertise maybe that we should have about space and some of the unique challenges it presents? Is viewing space primarily as a means of accomplishing other things, does that make it more difficult for us to be successful in executing these programs?
And, part two, some people may argue that until space has its own service that it will not have the career path or the emphasis that is needed in order to make sure that we are successful not just at building stuff, but in having a full-scope space policy. Do you think there is any legitimacy to those criticisms?
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Secretary TEETS. Well, certainly there is legitimacy. Those are very real factors that you point out. I am a strong believer that we do have the expertise and the knowledge to be able to successfully execute space programs.
Secretary TEETS. There is a very daunting challenge, and as you look ahead to the development of a high-technology space program, generally speaking, you find a wide range of possibilities for cost outcomes. If you look at the program optimistically, you will get a number that is quite significantly different than if you look at a program pessimistically. And, since we are always trying to maximize the amount of capability that we have, we do ourselves a disservice to become too pessimistic. Similarly, if we get too optimistic, we are going to run into cost and scheduling problems, so it is a tough challenge to pick the right road of program and space resources systems.
Now, a person who has been involved in that for 15 years at the NRO is Admiral Fisher, and, if I may, I would like to ask him if he would like to make a comment or two on this subject of do we have the capability to acquire systems on cost and on schedule. And I know that General Lord really has strong feelings about developing the professional cadre and talent to do it, so
Mr. THORNBERRY. And, if you know of other things we need to do in the law concerning acquisition and other things, include that in your answer.
Admiral FISHER. Yes. Thank you, Mr. Teets, and thank you, gentlemen.
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In the 15 years that I have been working in interim acquisition, I have seen both programs succeed and those that have had problems, and when I look at the difference, the programs that succeedand these are things we talked about a little bit todayare those that understand the requirements and have some requirements-bounding process. There are those that have been well engineered from a systems perspective, and there are those where there have been excellent risk identification and risk management; and by that I mean if you identify a technology that is problematic, then where are the opportunities in time and in technology space to get off that and make a decision to preserve some amount of performance and schedule and cost?
So it is those kinds of decision processes that I think characterize successful programs. And Mr. Teets' comments about 03, 01, and Directive 7 and his personal efforts in terms of these acquisition boards have reinforced that across the national security space domain, so what we are seeing is better rigor in terms of bounding the requirements, better rigor in terms of the engineering and risk management as well as the cost.
I would add one other thing that I would note. In the 15 years that I have been involved in the space community, I think we are seeing a deterioration on the industrial base at the vendor level in terms of the numbers and diversity of folks that build our parts. And so that becomes problematic when you are building complex spacecraft. If you find out about a parts issue late in the bill, you have a problem, and that is something that we are also addressing in the community as well.
Mr. EVERETT. All right. I am going to hold the rest of my questions until all members have had a chance to ask any additional questions that they want to.
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Mr. REYES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Since we have deployed the first Stryker group in Iraqand you answered my previous questions, in terms of the kind of information that would be available either real-time or near real-timemy question is, how much information do we expect space-based radar to generate, and how will this information be sent to potential users; and, in fact, what capability do we have to disseminate the information in a useful format and yet in a timely manner to be able to be used by, for instance, our Stryker battalions in that kind of an environment?
Secretary TEETS. Sir, the answer to that question is that it is very much under study. We have some that are competing for the contract activity, and what we have asked them to do in their proposals is to address that very question: What are the alternatives; how would we get the information down; how would we best post it to the information grid; how would we enable people in the Stryker brigades to pull information off the grid, and so forth? So what I am trying to suggest to you is this is still a work in progress, but conceptually there is an enormously important information of military value that we are determined to assure our people in the field get.
It could be with, for example, a space-based radar system operating in conjunction with this transformational communication system; that is, massive data that is being collected by the space-based radar would get pumped down by Lasercom, enormously high bandwidth transmission, down into a ground station in Continental United States (CONUS), let's say, and massaged, worked on, with a lot of computational capabilityand I am talking about, now, seconds of turnaround timebut then sent back up to TSAT communication satellite, which would receive that information again in very, very high data rates, but then be able to transmit right down to Iraq through a sandstorm or a dust storm or a rainstorm, with S-band kind of capability to a soldier or a Jeep. He could pull the information he needs from it.
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Now, that is one concept. Another concept that we are dealing withand, frankly, General Dodgen and the Army people have been real strong in their statements that we would like to have some direct downlink into the theatre. We want some on-board processing on-board this space-based radar, and we want to do some synthetic radar aperture imaging and have that image direct downlinked from the satellite to the Jeep.
We are looking at all of those kinds of concepts, and I might just pause and ask General Dodgen if he would like to comment.
General DODGEN. Thank you, Congressman. You probably understand, more than anybody, understand exactly the needs of the Army and the future in this regard and our whole tactic, not only for the Stryker brigade but for the unit of action that is coming after it, depend on having this type of persistent intelligence at the fingertip of the soldiers and actually showing up in the vehicles. That is why we are participating so strongly in the requirements process, to ensure that these things marry up.
I think the wideband communications and the space-based radar capabilities are vital to the way we are going to fight in the future.
Mr. REYES. And I assume a critical part of this is to make sure there aren't any delays in TSAT, with such a critical component of our ability to use space-based radar information.
General DODGEN. Sure.
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Mr. REYES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. EVERETT. Mr. Spratt.
Mr. SPRATT. Have you decided yet whether this should be a Low-earth orbit (LEO) or a Medium-earth orbit (MEO)?
Secretary TEETS. That is still under trade studies right now. We have asked our contractors to give us concepts. What we are trying to say is that we want to introduce persistent surveillance.
Now, there are a couple ways you can do that. The radar job is easier from lower earth orbit than it is from a medium earth orbit, but if you go into a lower earth orbit you will need more satellites; on the other hand, if you go into a higher orbit, while it makes it a much more difficult job to collect the information, you need fewer satellites once you do it, so we are asking our contractors to give us state of the art technology, and this is still a dynamic situation.
We are casting a broad net here. We want the best possible persistent surveillance start we can get, and space-based radar is the way to do it, because we know it is all-weather, day-night kind of system, where you can actually achieve persistent collection. And which orbits and how many satellites is under study now.
Mr. SPRATT. Sir, if you went to a LEO, would you be vulnerable? Can anti-satellites (ASAT) take out a direct launch from a country that had a three-stage missile?
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Secretary TEETS. Yes, lower earth orbit is certainly higher than it would be in any higher energy orbit. But I think one of the thingsthat perhaps we should defer to our closed sessionbut that I will just say is that we have done a very serious vulnerability study associated with all of our national security space programs, and it is not just the airborne assets or the space-borne assets. It also involves ground station. It involves links that are particularly vulnerable, and we are trying to shore up our vulnerabilities in a very real case because we do see, frankly, a threat starting to evolve.
Mr. SPRATT. I understand the constellation you are looking at would have 9 satellites, as opposed to 21, in a lower earth orbit configuration, and the cost of that is $34 billion in 2004 constant dollars?
Secretary TEETS. Sir, it is true that the reference constellation is a 9-ball LEO constellation and the 34 billion that you have is a projected cost estimate out throughI believe it is 2026. And so we are talking about a real long life cycle of this constellation with replenishment, et cetera, for the next 22 years.
Mr. SPRATT. So that is acquiring, maintaining?
Secretary TEETS. Yeah.
Mr. SPRATT. If you go to 21, does the cost go up on a linear basis or is there some savings that you enlarge the system?
Page 43 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Secretary TEETS. As you enlarge the system, there clearly are savings, but I will just say as it relates to the life cycle cost, I do think there is a lot of variation yet in the system architecture.
As I say, we have not locked onto a 9-ball system or a 21-ball system or LEO orbits or MEO orbits. We are merely exploring a wide range of possibilities here, but for purposes of laying out the 5-year defense plan we did assume a 9-ball LEO constellation, it is true.
Mr. SPRATT. Well, it is a pretty fundamental decision which affects the cost and how many are launched, whether you go LEO or MEO?
Secretary TEETS. Well, that is what we are going to ascertain here over the course of the next 6 months.
Mr. SPRATT. I can only imagine that this single satellite must require huge quantities of copious data.
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir.
Mr. SPRATT. And you want to do sort of on-station processing, which I can readily appreciate why, and that is a tall order; and this is a huge software challenge among other things?
Secretary TEETS. It is not so much a software challenge as it is a communication system challenge in my estimation.
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It is terribly important that we bring on-line this space-based radar system in the same time window that we are bringing on-line this transformational communication architecture.
Mr. SPRATT. So TSAT is integrally linked with this, and if it does not achieve its own capacity specs, then you got a problem with this system, too?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, some problem.
I would say this: that when I said transformational column architecture, TSAT is one very important part of the transformational column architecture, but the beauty of our column architecture is that it is a network system of systems that can degrade slowly.
If TSAT comes on-line late, we are not going to be without communication capability. We have other nodes and other capabilities that can continue to supply us if we are a little bit late with TSAT, so there is no one communication system that is going to take down our national security space communications capability.
Mr. SPRATT. But for full capacity you need TSAT.
Secretary TEETS. Yes, and TSAT is a vitally important link. I am just trying to make the point that it does not eliminate our capability if it is late.
Mr. SPRATT. A minute ago, you mentioned the downlink, ability to connect even with the tactical commander in the field.
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Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir.
Mr. SPRATT. That was also a characteristic that was held out for the SBIRS load, battlefield characterization, which would have included some accessibility, some link between the satellite and the commander in the field. But it was never attained, and I think it has been dropped with respect to DSP. It may have been a desirable feature for the new iteration of SBIRS load, but we have tried it for a long time now. We have not attained it. We have not proven that it can actually be done at that level of tactical connectivity.
How confident are you this can be achieved in this system?
Secretary TEETS. I think that is one of the key trades that needs to be done, and we are asking our contractors to again give us trade space there.
Do we want to do centralized processing at a ground station using transformational communications links, or do we want to do on-board processing, and how much on-board processing do we want to do?
Again, I think there are trades that are available to us on both space-based radar and transformational column that can lead us to an optimal answer.
Mr. EVERETT. Do you want to hold the rest of those questions for the next round?
Page 46 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Mr. SPRATT. Yes.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Thank you.
I find this discussion fascinating. Can you just talk a little bit about the opportunity we have or are exercising for partnerships in some of our other alliances, for example, the NATO Alliance with the British and others who are obviously very close to us, but, at the same time, we have competitive satellite private sector concerns. And the issues of tech transfer, export controls, these are all inextricably intertwined, and these are tough policy decisions that we have to make in different venues, but they all come haltingly to the forefront when we are trying to figure out how to protect ourselves and maintain a proprietary system that has redundancies but still is operable with our allies, where we have a NATO exercise and many people that we have to communicate with.
Can you kind of talk about what you think about that?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, ma'am. Be pleased to.
First off, let me say that with regard to our transformational communication architecture, we are designing it and we are thinking about it across our national security space domain, and that national security space domain includes, of course, all the military services. It includes the Intelligence Community of the United States. It also has some participation with NASA. We do not have foreign involvement in designing this architecture. This is a U.S.-only architecture at its core.
Page 47 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC By the very nature of what I am saying now, I think you will realize that one of the challenges that we have is going to be multilevel security. There will be users on this system which will be able to use the transformational column system and pull information off the information grid that is based on their level of security clearance that is involved here, and, so that is pretty much the way we have handled it.
We are saying that this system is going to use encrypted data, and end points will unencrypt, and we will use, then, just as we do today, means to share information with allies or not.
It will be at our discretion at the end point, as to whether or not a certain person has a clearance to receive this kind of information.
Ms. TAUSCHER. So a key system at the operational level could or could not include an ally in a joint operation; I mean, I think what you have done is taken down all the walls from jointness, but what you are saying is it will be the ultimate barrier of entry at some level, decided by us, as to whether we share keys and to what level the information is filtered down to a place where it either is of significant nature, classified, declassified, or basically nobody cares?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, ma'am. And it turns out today we are fortunate to have the transformational column architecture sitting here. And, Admiral Fisher, how about addressing this, just to make a comment or two?
Admiral FISHER. Well, you have described it well, sir.
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I would offer that part of our team includes Mr. Stenbit in his role as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Networks and Information Integration (ASDNII).
Also Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS), which is heavily involved in both those organizations, I think perform exactly what you are indicating, which is a liaison to the allies.
I have briefed some of our closer allies to the emergence of this so they understand where we are going, but I actually think the attributes which the architecture has, which are to be able to carry multilevels of security in the same encrypted stream and the Internet protocol, are going to offer far better opportunities to interoperate at the coalition level than we have today. So I think it gives us that kind of policy level control, if you will, but also gives us the ability to share in a much easier way if we decide we want to do that.
Ms. TAUSCHER. Yes. This is vitally important because the widening that we have, even with our own NATO allies, where we are, you know, as large as the next 20 of our competitors in defense appropriations and authorization, means that at some level, if we ever go beyond joint and the United States would actually have a coalition of the capability where we would really have to measure the success by having significant operations, the gap is widening every day, and communication is going to be what will make or break us. And if we can save ourselves the opportunity of having the ability to have the keys work when we want them to, but at the same time filter information down so that at least we have operational abilities, then I think we are going to be able to have a coalition of the capable that actually works for us. That is great news.
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Mr. EVERETT. Mrs. Wilson.
Mrs. WILSON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
General Lord, I want to ask you, have you set up a task force to look at lessons learned from Afghanistan and Iraq on how to connect space to the warfighter, and could you give us what the status of that is and what some of your initial conclusions are?
General LORD. Yes, ma'am. We followed up Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) very aggressively with what happened in space. As a matter of fact, I have had a chance to visit with our folks in Afghanistan. Also been into Saudi Arabia and into United Arab Emirates, both for OEF and also Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and very aggressively followed that.
As a matter of fact, during the height of OIF, we had almost 1,0001,200 Air Force base command employed, almost 500 into the theatre, between what was going on with our air operation center and people in the field, as well as with our Army, Navy, and Marine colleagues; having people just like that involved in the aspects.
We followed it up very closely. The things that we really were most proud of was the service we provided in the global positioning system with enhanced capability to have the constellation, the most accurate information on-board those navigational satellites when they came in view of the theatre, the missile warning piece that we were able to provide information, the communications, and support for all those activities.
Page 50 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC People in the air operation center are working for them, Lieutenant General Buzz Moseley coordinating.
We synchronized our operations from back at Vandenberg up in real-time, working in support of those operations, and I am very proud of those. So we followed all of those up and they are part of what we learned independently in the Air Force, and we learned a lot from Operation Enduring Freedom just to help us in Operation Iraqi Freedom. So we built those relationships and we pushed people forward to every exercise, visited every theatre, and we have people involved in the day-to-day planning and activities and all of the combatant commands.
Mrs. WILSON. What were the one or two things that you saw that you needed to do better that you want to fix?
General LORD. We need to get more people involved from my end, personnel-wise, and get more people familiar with being inside that operations tempo (OPTEMPO) of a combat and commander working a particular problem, because the day-to-day, we do activities as our other service colleagues do, to support worldwide capabilities, as well as being able to tailor capabilities for a specific theater or operation, like we do with General Franks and like we are doing right now for General Abizaid.
The more people we have involved in that, the better off it is for us and how long it will be. That is healthy appreciation for the contribution to actual achievement of combat effects.
Mrs. WILSON. If there is a report on that or your ''hot wash,'' or whatever you do, I would appreciate seeing that, because I want to see where you are going and what you have learned.
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General LORD. Right. I know Admiral Giambastiani from Joint Forces Command is involved in the joint lessons learned process, and I believe that is all tied up and ready to be presented through the Secretary of Defense to Congress.
Mrs. WILSON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Mr. EVERETT. It sounds like a radio needs to be reset. Two votes.
Mr. Thornberry, do you have a quick question?
Mr. THORNBERRY. Yes. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
General Lord, Admiral Gibrowski in the Office of Force Transformation has been doing some work on small satellites, put up fast and cheap.
Tell me what your opinion of that is, where that program is; and what I am particularly interested in, if you think it has merit, is the Air Force going to take it up?
General LORD. Well, the one that you are referring to that the folks in Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) have led with the partnership at DARPA and the Air Force research lab, we want to get involved and have been involved in the early planning.
There is going to be, I think, some really important breakthroughs here and a little smaller technology, some things we will be able to do. It is supposed to be launched in May, I believe, with a new vendor and a launch businessMr. Eli Munsk, who is an entrepreneur who has developed a pretty interesting rocket. I visited his factory in Los Angeles and he has got a unique concept.
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So, lower-cost access, plus a smaller satellite capability; yes, sir, we are interested and want to follow that up aggressively. Mr. Teets in his leadership role has pushed us really hard to make sure we follow that closely and get involved. We have been in contact with Admiral Ellis at STRATCOM. He is interested.
Yes, sir. We are pushing hard on that.
Mr. THORNBERRY. I just do not want to get lost in the problems that we were talking about a little bit earlier with Secretary Teets.
Let me ask one final brief question. We do not have time to get into the whole career path that we were alluding to before, but on a scale of 1 to 10, where are we in terms of having career paths in the military that focus on space and develop the kind of expertise that we have to have going forward?
General LORD. I would say right now 8.75, to be a 10 by a year from now.
I am reallyyou and I know, we have talked about this before, and I have spent the last two years working this under the guidance of Mr. Teets, and the space contract development is something we have taken very seriously. And I am really pleased with how much we have seen improvement and I am pleased withvery quickly, what we have identified in the Air Force, along with our Army Navy and Marine Force colleagues, is the cadre of people we want to characterize in the space business, but the first thing I want to do is measure their skills and abilities so I could have a way to measure it against the path that we want to lay out.
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We have 1,600 of those folks identified by their skills and abilities. By the 1st of July we should have 7,000 done. Hopefully by the end of the year, I will have all 10,000 in the Air Force, and then to the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps, and then from that we will be able to measure our success in measuring skills and abilities.
We have it linked with our other forces so that everything that you and I talked about over the last 3 or 4 years we are instituting, following up on the recommendations of the Space Commission. And, as you heard Mr. Teets say, his number one priority is mission insurance, I would say mission insurance every day, people always, in terms of cadre. That is kind of how we are approaching it.
Mr. THORNBERRY. Thank you.
Mr. EVERETT. I intend to end the hearing.
I talked to Mr. Spratt and he also has additional questions, and my additional questions I will submit for the record.
General Lord, I would ask for you to make sure that you tell us how you propose to improve space education, not only for those directly involved in it but also for those in other military branches of the service who might be consumers of it. And while you are increasing your focus on space superiority and for each of the service representatives, if you could give us a statement on what you need from space, how you use it, and what you expect from it?
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[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. EVERETT. Mr. Spratt.
Mr. SPRATT. Could I just make a short statement?
Look, I understand the importance of what you are doing. I am concerned with the experience and by the rapid rate that this program ramps up to $10 billion, moving from concept definition to, I guess, define phase in the next 5 years. That is a pretty big ramp-up. It is a lot of money.
One suggestion and one thing I would like for you to submit for the record, What are the pressure points? If you put your contract management people out in the various production facilities, what critical points are you going to be looking at so that you will know this thing is not working right, it is not developing as intended, costs are turning upward?
Could you give us that off the back of an envelope and then submit it just for the record, just what you would look for, for the record?
Secretary TEETS. Yes, sir.
Mr. SPRATT. Either SBR or TSAT.
Page 55 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC Secretary TEETS. We will definitely submit it to you for the record.
[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Secretary TEETS. I would just say real quickly, particularly on the transformational column, we have a very aggressive maturation plan in front of us. There are several technologies that are at technology readiness level number three at the moment, which we need to mature to technology readiness level number six before we actually down-select to a single contractor, and that will be in fiscal year 2006. So we do want to retire technology risk early. And we have, I will say, an important plan for how we are going to measure incremental success as we go through this whole process, and we will be happy to provide that to you.
Mr. EVERETT. I think we have only got about eight minutes left.
In addition, General Lord, would you please give us some comments on the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) providers essential to gaining access? We cannot get up there, we cannot do anything, and what steps are being taken to ensure that we have what we need to get up there?
[The information referred to can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Mr. EVERETT. Meeting is adjourned. Thank you very much, gentlemen.
Page 56 PREV PAGE TOP OF DOC [Whereupon, at 3:33 p.m., the subcommittee was adjourned.]