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[H.A.S.C. No. 106–50]



FOR FISCAL YEAR 2001—H.R. 4205






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MARCH 16, 2000



DUNCAN HUNTER, California, Chairman
FLOYD D. SPENCE, South Carolina
BOB STUMP, Arizona
JIM SAXTON, New Jersey
J.C. WATTS, Jr., Oklahoma
LINDSEY GRAHAM, South Carolina
JIM RYUN, Kansas
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MARY BONO, California
JOSEPH PITTS, Pennsylvania
ROBIN HAYES, North Carolina

JOHN M. SPRATT, Jr., South Carolina
LANE EVANS, Illinois
ADAM SMITH, Washington
JAMES H. MALONEY, Connecticut
MIKE McINTYRE, North Carolina
ROBERT BRADY, Pennsylvania

Steven Thompson, Professional Staff Member
Roger Smith, Professional Staff Member
John Sullivan, Professional Staff Member
J.J. Gertler, Professional Staff Member
Jesse Tolleson, Staff Assistant

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CURT WELDON, Pennsylvania, Chairman
JOHN M. McHUGH, New York
HOWARD ''BUCK'' McKEON, California
WALTER B. JONES, Jr., North Carolina
BOB RILEY, Alabama

GENE TAYLOR, Mississippi
MARTIN T. MEEHAN, Massachusetts
VIC SNYDER, Arkansas
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BARON P. HILL, Indiana
JOHN B. LARSON, Connecticut

Stephen Ansley, Professional Staff Member
Brian Green, Professional Staff Member
Robert Lautrup, Professional Staff Member
Jean Reed, Professional Staff Member
William Natter, Professional Staff Member
Erica Striebel, Staff Assistant



    Thursday, March 16, 2000, Fiscal Year 2001 National Defense Authorization Act—Air Force Programs for Fiscal Year 2001

    Thursday, March 16, 2000
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    Hunter, Hon. Duncan, a Representative from California, Chairman, Military Procurement Subcommittee

    Pickett, Hon. Owen, a Representative from Virginia, Ranking Member, Military Research and Development Subcommittee

    Sisisky, Hon. Norman, a Representative from Virginia, Ranking Member, Military Procurement Subcommittee

    Weldon, Hon. Curt, a Representative from Pennsylvania, Chairman, Military Research and Development Subcommittee


    Delaney, Hon. Lawrence J., Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition)

    Howe, Gen. Mike, Director, Joint Strike Fighter
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    Plummer, Lt. Gen. Stephen B., U.S. Air Force, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force (Acquisition)

    Rodrigues, Louis J., Director, Defense Acquisition Issues, National Security and International Affairs Division


[The Prepared Statements Submitted for the Record can be viewed in the hard copy.]
Delaney, Hon. Lawrence J.

Hunter, Hon. Duncan

Pickett, Hon. Owen

Plummer, Lt. Gen. Stephen B.

Weldon, Hon. Curt

[There were no Documents Submitted for the Record.]

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[The Questions and Answers are pending.]


House of Representatives, Committee on Armed Services, Military Procurement Subcommittee, Meeting Jointly with Military Research and Development Subcommittee, Washington, DC, Thursday, March 16, 2000.

    The Subcommittees met, pursuant to call, at 1:00 p.m., in room 2118, Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Duncan Hunter (Chairman of the Subcommittee on Military Procurement) presiding.


    Mr. HUNTER. The Subcommittees will come to order. This afternoon, we welcome witnesses from the Department of the Air Force to receive testimony on its FY 2001 modernization programs. The FY 2001 Air Force procurement budget request is $20.9 billion. Compared to the FY 2000 request of $18.6 billion, that is a 12% increase. However, this budget request is also about $370 million, or 1.7%, less than the Administration told us it would be when the budget for FY 2000 was submitted a year ago.

    As most of you know, I have been very concerned about diminished levels of modernization funding over the past seven years. This year, General Mike Ryan, the Air Force Chief of Staff, also shared his concerns about the effect of another underfunded Air Force modernization budget when he told the Committee that the average age of today's Air Force aircraft is an unprecedented 20 years, and under the current modernization plans the average age will increase to 30 years by 2015.
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    He also warned us that the cost of maintaining older equipment is growing, which reduces his ability to buy new equipment. Aircraft aging has also been a major contributor to falling aircraft mission capable rates. Against the backdrop of older equipment and reduced readiness, the 12% increase in this year's procurement budget request, compared to last year, is simply not enough, as evidenced by General Ryan's unfunded priority list of $3.5 billion in FY 2001 alone. In the remaining years of the Future Years Defense Program from 2002 to 2005, his unfunded priorities total an additional $8.2 billion.

    Before I introduce my witnesses, I would like to announce that immediately following the hearing, the Committees will receive briefings on the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program from both the General Accounting Office (GAO) and the JSF Program director. These briefings will address the recent GAO draft report on the JSF, which expresses concerns with the program's planned transition to engineering and manufacturing development in mid-2001. While I am sure our Air Force witnesses can answer most questions concerning the JSF program, we will not be able to discuss specific issues raised by the GAO report during this open hearing due to proprietary considerations in the ongoing competition.

    Therefore, immediately after the hearing we will clear the room, except for members and staff, in order to discuss the details of the GAO report and maybe get a little input here too. Perhaps we could after we open up the discussion on the things that we can talk about and maybe get a couple of opening statements from the GAO and the program director and then go into proprietary matters in a closed session so if you want to consider that.

    With us today, for what I hope will be an informative discussion on Air Force modernization programs are the Honorable Lawrence J. Delaney, Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for acquisition, and Lieutenant General Stephen Plummer, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for acquisition. Thank you, gentlemen, for being with us today. Before I turn the floor over to Secretary Delaney, I would like to call on my colleague, Curt Weldon, Chairman of our Research and Development Subcommittee, who is co-chairing today's hearing. We are doing a joint hearing on a number of areas and this is one area with an integrated understanding of what is happening with the programs. So I want to call on Curt for any remarks he wants to make.
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    We will follow that with Norm Sisisky and Owen Pickett, the ranking Democrats on the Procurement and R&D Subcommittees. So, do you have opening remarks?

    [The prepared statement of Mr. Hunter can be found in the Appendix.]


    Mr. WELDON. Thank you, Chairman Hunter. I would also like to welcome our witnesses and the panel today, the Subcommittees looking forward to you to your testimony. As part of our continuing series of joint hearings between Procurement and R&D, we want to examine the status of Air Force R&D requests for FY 2001. Mr. Chairman, I want to be as brief as possible but I do want to raise some of the concerns that have been raised by the R&D Subcommittee that I hope we can address today.

    I expect much of today's testimony will be very positive with progress being made in a number of R&D programs such as introducing new stealth technologies such as beta sensors being inserted into existing Air Force platforms. As I read your prepared statement, Secretary Delaney, I did find cause for concern in some areas that are very important to Members on Subcommittee. I do need to comment that the Air Force is a ''major contributor to DOD's tier architecture to counter the ever growing theater ballistic missile and long range hostile threats.'' I for one didn't always share that view, but I also took note of a description of your ''balance modernization program'' which has only 7% of your first $13.6 billion of modernization funds shared between theater missile defense and other weapons, while 93% in comparison to those traditional Air Force programs such as the F22, the first-strike fighters and the C–17 and a number of other current systems.
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    I find the small share of missile defense funding disturbing. This Committee has demonstrated strong bipartisan support for missile defense modernization requirements and I want to state my concern for a recent Air Force decision relating to missile defense. We were greatly disappointed by the actions taken to reduce funding and slow down the service's high and low programs in last year's budget request and the manner in which those decisions were irreversibly implemented without consultation with the Congress.

    The cuts in these important elements of the missile defense architecture will have a negative impact on other missile defense programs. While this can equal the quality of the airborne laser program, fully funded in last year's budget deliberations, I now find this year's request that the Air Force has drastically cut the airborne laser, the other major Air Force missile defense by over 50% and slowed the program by five to seven years. I don't believe these actions indicate a strong Air Force commitment targeting missile defense. I can assure you that we will be closely examining Air Force priorities related to missile defense during this year's process.

    I also would note that Chief of Staff, General Lyons, how over $3.5 billion in Air Force funding shortfalls for FY 2001 in its letter to this Committee only a handful of those unfunded priorities were R&D programs. I am concerned by this absence of the unfunding of R&D priorities unless the Air Force is telling the Congress that you are confident that your budget request for R&D is in fact fully adequate. In particular, I am constantly told by House and Senate Members that the Air Force funding of science and technology is well below necessary levels and reflects a lower percentage of R&D funding than either the Army or the Navy.

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    During today's hearing, I welcome evidence of a strong Air Force commitment to missile defense and any comments you may have on the absence of unfunded R&D priorities in the FY 2001 budget request. I also want to highlight one other smaller but important issue, and that is the ongoing Air Force activity to improve your fighter aircraft ejection seats. Last year Congress provided additional funds, I believe it was $12 million, to aid both the Air Force and the Navy to a joint ejection seat program and intended those funds to be equally divided among all viable competitors to insure fair competition for future Air Force and Navy ejection seat requirements.

    It has been brought to my attention that these funds are not in fact being equitably distributed among all viable industry candidates and I would like to know more about how the Air Force is conducting this program and insuring fair and equal treatment of potential competitors and specifically whether or not one contractor is in fact getting three-fourths of these funds through three different subsidiary front companies. I also look forward to today's closed session discussions concerning the joint strike fighter. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    [The prepared statement of Mr. Weldon can be found in the Appendix.]

    Mr. HUNTER. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and now Mr. Sisisky.


    Mr. SISISKY. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Welcome, gentlemen. As we heard from representatives of other services this past couple weeks, there has been one constant theme, and that has been requirement. I can tell you the word requirements gets used in a lot of ways up here. Constituents, lobbyists and Members of Congress all have their own ideas about what a requirement is but when the military services say they have a requirement, I think it has a clear and urgent meaning.
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    The regional Commanders in Chief (CINCs), fleet admirals and service chiefs have all said they have requirements they cannot meet. The personnel, both military and civilian, are terrific and we know how hard they are working. I think it is safe to say that at the end of the Cold War no one anticipated the operation of tempo we have today, and since it was never predicted we have had a lot of unpredictable consequences. The one thing we have learned that we simply need more people and that is particularly true in the Army.

    The unintended consequence of not having enough people is when personnel draw extended and repeated duty overseas it puts family stability and job security at risk. And we also know that having so many deployments over the last few years is wearing out equipment. In some cases we did not have enough equipment in the first place. As some of us have said all along, we think the Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) was wrong to conclude, for instance, that the Navy could make do with less than 15 carrier battle groups.

    That was something this Committee objected to from the beginning and both majority and minority can truly say we have told you so. In other cases, operational tempo led to shortfalls nobody expected. The matrix was unable to predict what we all should have known by our gut feeling. In every case operational tempo impacts both equipment and people. And this is true of every service and every piece of equipment and I particularly want to learn how the Air Force has met these new challenges. Air Force systems and personnel requirements aren't always identical to those of other services.

    Your testimony will give a clear understanding of unique Air Force requirements. Obviously, a big part of the problem is money. This year's defense budget requests took a much needed step towards fixing procurement. $60 billion is real money in anybody's book. The problem is that the services have another $15 billion plus in just unfunded requirements. Even Deputy Secretary Hamre said that is how much the Department of Defense (DOD) really needs.
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    Mr. Chairman, the Budget Committee announced yesterday, I believe, and we have a member of the Budget Committee here, or maybe two, that it is going to increase the Administration's top line for defense but only by about $1 billion. That is welcome but you and I both work for more because $1 million really is simply not enough. It is only about 6% of this year's unfunded requirement.

    And I want our witnesses to know I really don't blame you for the problem. They are the ones forced to meet post-Cold War requirements with pre-Pearl Harbor resources. Congress is who the duty to provide these resources, the services that made priorities and requirements very clear and I hope that in their testimony this panel will make clear what action they require of us. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    Mr. HUNTER. Thank you. The other gentleman from Virginia, Mr. Pickett.


    Mr. PICKETT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I appreciate you calling this meeting to review the issue of Air Force modernization for the 2001 budget. Even though the proposed Air Force modernization budget submission for FY 2001 is somewhat larger than last year's appropriated level, several of its recommendations are somewhat troubling. The budget submission defers quantities and the funding of several key programs to later years. Such is the case in the C–17 multi-year and also with respect to the airborne laser program.
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    At a time when we need to invest in leap ahead technologies more than ever before research and development funding is held to last year's appropriated amount and of that investments in science and technology actually fall to less than 45 of the entire modernization budget. The airborne laser program has been cut some 50% across the future years defense plan which will cause a two-year delay in the program's first lethal intercept shot and as much as a five-year delay in its anticipated initial operating capability.

    I hope our witnesses will expand on this development and tell us whether this is a funding constraint or a technology constraint change in this program. The joint strike fighter is reported to have several areas of high technological risk particularly in the area of vertical take off and landing. The F–22 program has been the subject of cost reduction efforts that may adversely impact the overall test program. Additional F–22 program slippage will undoubtedly lead to significant cost increases and delays in the delivery of the joint strike fighter could increase the risk of disruptions to future force structure plans.

    The Air Force's plan to revitalize strategic satellite capability needs to be examined in the wake of the recent launch accident. Conventional mission upgrades for the long range bomber fleet need to be addressed and there needs to be a robust investment in unmanned air reconnaissance assets. Finally, Mr. Chairman, let me ask the witnesses to consider two additional modernization concerns. First, aircraft propulsion technology needs to begin exploring avenues available for jet engine quieting technology.

    Second, greater efforts must be made by the Air Force to manage and control its growing software cost. It has been brought to my attention that the defense department as a whole purchases more than $42 billion worth of software on an annual basis, yet there is no established quality assurance program or sound management practice set in place to maintain a cost effective acquisition strategy. With future modernization being so dependent on software improvements, it is clear that a best practices approach could yield additional savings to the department that could be more beneficially invested elsewhere.
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    It is my hope that better software acquisition management is an idea that will soon be embraced and I would welcome the thoughts of our witnesses on this subject. Mr. Chairman, I appreciate you calling this meeting and I welcome the testimony of our witnesses today. Thank you.

    [The prepared statement of Mr. Pickett can be found in the Appendix.]

    Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. And Secretary Delaney, the floor is yours. Thank you for being with us.


    Secretary DELANEY. Thank you very much. Mr. Chairman, distinguished Members of the House Armed Services Committee—

    Mr. HUNTER. And, Mr. Secretary, incidentally your statement, your written statement, and General Plummer's written statement will both be accepted into the record without objection, so feel free to paraphrase or summarize your statement. Don't feel like you have to read it totally to get it into the record. We will put it into the record.

    Mr. SISISKY. Mr. Secretary, would you push the microphone closer. It may be wet on that table right now. My elderly colleagues can't hear too well. Okay.

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    Secretary DELANEY. Thank you for the opportunity to speak to you today on the Air Force's FY 2001 modernization program. We are grateful for your interest, concern, and the support you have provided to us as we formulate the time phase balance modernization program for securing the required capabilities for the 21st Century Air Force. Foremost, our modernization focus is synchronized with Joint Vision 2010, the conceptual template for how America's Armed Forces will challenge the vitality and innovation of our people and leverage technological opportunities to achieve new levels of effectiveness in joint warfighting.

    Complimenting Joint Vision 2010 is the Air Force's long range vision to become an expeditionary aerospace force. Success is heavily dependent on the full set of Air Force corps competencies, rapid global mobility, aerospace superiority, global attack, precision engagement, information superiority, and agile combat support. We cannot focus on any corps competency at the neglect of the others. You have to mind the whole store. We will leverage technology to improve combat effectiveness through upgrades of legacy systems, selective new starts, and investment in critical technology programs for advance systems.

    In rapid global mobility corps competency C–17 was a star performer for the Air Force in Kosovo. We are strongly committed to maintaining the multi-year buy. The C–17 extended range program will give us full access to en route basis. C–5 avionics modernization program and reliability enhancement and re-engining program restores full aircraft capability to the C–5 fleet.

    We took delivery of the first Joint Primary Air Training System (JPATS) aircraft marking the end of the engineering and manufacturing department (EMD). Two JPATS are at Randolph Air Force Base for operational tests. We delivered the 100th tonner loader to Air Mobility Command. The evolved expendable launch vehicle is on schedule with the first commercial launch scheduled for 2001 and the first government launch in 2002. For aerospace superiority the F–22 testing has been highly successful. Results are matching prediction and confidence is high. The ABL is on track technically and executing this year's program as planned.
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    In the FY01 President's budget, the first lethal missile shootdown occurs in FY05, as was mentioned, but we can do that earlier, that is, in FY03, if the money in the UPO is restored. The Space-based Infrared Radar System (SBIRS) program completed restructure in December, 1999, and the SBIRS GEO satellite is scheduled for first launch FY04. The SBIRS LO program awarded PDRR contracts to TRW and Specter Mastro in August, 1999, and is scheduled for first launch in FY06.

    In the area of global attack the B–2 was proven to be a formidable weapon in Operation Allied Force. We are integrating advance weapons systems in the B–2, B–1 and B–52 while continuing modifications to the F–15, F–16 and F–117 to significantly enhance combat effectiveness. Precision engagement programs include an accelerated JDAM production for which we have the Congress to be thankful for, and by the end of the year we will have five times as many JDAMS as pre-Kosovo levels. The ALCM to CALCM conversion is going well but small numbers could leave us short to meet future and near term needs.

    We have started planning for development of an extended range cruise missile in FY02. We are continuing investment in miniaturized munitions technology, pursuing funding for a 500-pound JDAM for increased low down on bombers and fighters giving us all weather capability with reduced collateral damage. Information superiority programs emphasize modernization. The Air Force commitment to space is rock solid. The Air Force represents 90% of the people, 85% of the dollars, and 86% of the systems in DOD space effort.

    Our Kosovo proven Predator is a real-time video product of choice for ground commanders. Our Global Hawk Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration is a success transitioning to an Air Force acquisition program. Another Kosovo veteran, JSTARS, is funded for the 15 aircraft. The requirement is still for 19 aircraft. Agile Combat Support programs emphasize support to the expeditionary aerospace force minimizing the footprint for deployment and maximizing reach back to support theater operations.
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    S&T funding has turned up in this year's budget. Our S&T strategy is focused to apply technology to increase combat effectiveness. No longer do we measure sorties for target kill. Now it is target kills per sortie. Using the FY00 President's budget as a baseline, we need 2% real growth for FY01 and 02. In acquisition reform, we are reaping the benefits of the revolution in business affairs, $32 billion in cost savings and cost avoidance thus far. We are institutionalizing business processes and accelerating change for the next millennium.

    Charles Kettering, the famous philanthropist and inventor once noted that every age itself believes that it is the last age of achievement and every age has been wrong. Throughout the history of invention and discovery wise men have declared that we were at last straining the laws of nature but we were really only straining our imaginations. If the veterans of five decades ago had a crystal ball to peer into the future, most would surely find today's aerospace technology beyond imagination. Just as certainly, we want American commanders 50 years from now to look back and say we were good stewards of our heritage.

    The Air Force modernization program carefully balances budget realities with ongoing readiness needs to insure the Air Force will continue to provide our Nation a global engagement capability well into the 21st Century. Thank you for your support. I am honored to be here and I look forward to your questions.

    [The prepared statement of Secretary Delaney can be found in the Appendix.]

    Mr. HUNTER. General Plummer.
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    General PLUMMER. Mr. Chairman, 28 years ago when I first checked out in the F–4C Phantom fighter bomber, I was told that the wing man is to say 2 Bingo May Day and Lead, you are on fire, unless something else was requested from him. So in that context I helped Secretary Delaney construct the statement that he just read as his opening statement and I stand behind that with nothing further to add.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Good concise statement, General Plummer. We will move right ahead. Mr. Reyes suggests that we follow his lead. Let me start out with CALCM. You talked about CALCM. Our numbers are fairly low. We have this transformation program underway. Tell us a little bit about that.

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, first of all, conventional air-launched cruise missile (CALCM) was a very important weapon in the early days of Kosovo and our supplies were running down pretty quickly so we have instituted a program, the air-launched cruise missile (ALCM) to CALCM conversion, which is to take another 322 missiles and convert them into CALCMs. We received in the supplemental $178 million to do that so that program is underway and those missiles will be arriving in inventory shortly. The next step because of this important capability to stand off a mid-term program is the extended range CALCM so we are looking at structuring a program as a baseline in our studies is on the order of 600 extended range CALCMs that will come in. And then finally we have a long-term program for long range CALCMs, which has as a target to add another 1,000 long range CALCMs to our inventory.
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    Mr. HUNTER. One thing we are concerned about is not just the effectiveness of the system or coming up with a new species of CALCM but whether or not we are going to have any numbers of CALCMs. Quantity obviously has been the issue of the day coming out of Kosovo.

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes.

    Mr. HUNTER. How are we doing on the numbers with respect to you—are you up to speed on what the 2MTW requirement is? I know it may be classified.

    Secretary DELANEY. I am not familiar with the specific number for the two major theater war (2MTW) but we are doing—whatever was available, we are doing the conversion as quickly as possible.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. One thing about that, CALCMs cost about $1.2 million a piece. The Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAMs) are what?

    Secretary DELANEY. JDAMs latest number—the JDAMs are in the neighborhood of $20,000 a piece.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. $20,000 to about $1.2 million. That means that they are a little more than 50 times as expensive as a JDAM, a CALCM is. When we were having the B–2 debates one point the Administration always made was that we would never use them in a conventional conflict, which we have obviously. But the other point was that they were expensive but by my calculation it looked to me like the after action assessments have shown that the B–2 JDAMs were extremely accurate. Is that a fair statement?
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    Secretary DELANEY. That is exactly right.

    Mr. HUNTER. As accurate as the CALCMs. In fact, a little more accurate, aren't they? The General is nodding his head.

    Secretary DELANEY. In general the same, yes.

    Mr. HUNTER. Is that right, General Plummer?

    General PLUMMER. That is correct. Our experience in Kosovo would lead us to believe that that is—

    Mr. HUNTER. So let me get this straight. With a penetrator which is a B–2 you are able to fly to the target and deliver the same amount of ordnance a little closer to the target for 1/50th the cost per unit of explosive delivered, is that right, $1.2 million for a CALCM, 20 grand for a JDAM.

    Secretary DELANEY. I think that ratio is correct. The math part of that is correct.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Have you looked at that—now you know the reason I am asking that question is the last time we looked for an Administration bomber road map there was none. We said how long are you going to fly B–52s and the answer was until they are 80 years old. It looks to me like the validity of stealthy aircraft coupled with precision munitions has been well proven in the Kosovo operation and if you go down to a smaller JDAM where you can carry a lot more of them on the B–2s and they are independently targeted, you have even a greater multiplier, if you will. So wouldn't that fact and that experience in Kosovo compel you to begin to put together a new bomber blueprint? You like the idea of hitting these targets for 1/50th the cost of the CALCMs.
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    Secretary DELANEY. I will just give an answer and then I am sure General Plummer will have something to say. We very much like that cost trade off. The role of the CALCM of course has been for stand off attack, particularly—

    Mr. HUNTER. I understand.

    Secretary DELANEY.—in the early days of the war. So in a sense they compliment each other but the major emphasis obviously is on JDAM's miniaturized munitions using the JDAM kind of guidance and precision munitions.

    Mr. HUNTER. But you are going to have to have platforms to carry those and if you are going to get close enough for the JDAMs to work the platforms have to be stealthy if you are going to have a protected environment, a defended environment, right?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes. The answer to that in general is yes.

    Mr. HUNTER. I think what I would be thinking if I was an Air Force designer of this blueprint for the next penetrating aircraft would be, wait a minute, can we make maybe a less expensive B–2 that can carry lots of small JDAMs that are independently targetable and get lots of ordnance on independently targeted areas for fairly low cost and fairly low number of missions. General Plummer, what do you think?

    General PLUMMER. It certainly is an attractive thought to be able to put smaller precision weapons on our current B–2 or B–1 because we will be able to carry a lot more, we will be able to service more targets. But the fact will still remain that we will have to penetrate enemy air defenses in order to be able to do that. Stealth, as big of an advantage as that gives us is still not magic.
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    We still run a risk when we penetrate enemy defenses, particularly as we look at the defenses of the future, the future surface to air missile systems that we will have to fact that are already beginning proliferation in this decade, we still see a need for a balanced mix of munitions to include some kind of long range stand off weapon like a CALCM—

    Mr. HUNTER. No, I don't disagree with you. I am just saying to date there is no bomber road map whatsoever on the other side of the balance. Don't you think it is valid now to start looking at—and if you are going into more heavily defended environments where Stealth is not magic maybe having 21 of them isn't enough, right? You would expect to take a loss or two.

    Secretary DELANEY. Just to make a comment. We do have the bomber road map study that is underway now and will be finished in the next few months so that will be looking at all of those issues. That is the bomber road map study again which was funded with the plus up from Congress, is being done by the Aeronautical Systems Command to look at what our future needs are for bombers and then is being undergoing a separate review with Rand Corporation so we expect to have a good analytical handle on those questions that you raise shortly through the bomber road map study.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Thank you, Mr. Secretary. Mr. Sisisky.

    Mr. SISISKY. I might tell the Chairman that looking at the testimony the upgrades on the B–2 would be viable to the year 2040. That means some of those planes would be 80 years old. You would have squadrons of sopwith camels if you fixed them and patched them but I think are you comfortable going into the enemy air defenses in a plane old enough to be a Senator or a Congressman. I don't think you would but the serious business is really two questions I want to ask you. Number one, we did not use the B–1 in Desert Storm. We did use it I think in Kosovo and I would like to know how it performed there. But the main question is how is the testing of the F–22 progressing. That is the main question.
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    Secretary DELANEY. First answer on the B–1 is that there were five B–1s that were deployed to England and they delivered over 5,000 munitions. The main munitions they delivered were the 500-pound JDAMs—or, excuse me, the 500-pound Blue 82s, 500-pound bombs. And then they delivered some cluster munitions. The arrays of target that the B–1s struck were a very broad array of surface to air missile sites, concentration points, vehicles. They were very, very effective in the Kosovo war. General Plummer, did you—

    General PLUMMER. I would just like to add that the first actual use of the B–1 in combat was about six or eight months prior in December of 1998. We used the B–1 in the Desert Fox operation on two of the four nights of combat operations and it did admirably well. We dropped 500-pound bombs from it and its accuracy was superb and its target destruction and Bomb Damage Assessment (BDA) from the target destruction was excellent.

    Mr. HUNTER. And you solved the problem between offensive and defensive systems, have you not, or have you? That was the main problem, I think.

    General PLUMMER. We have worked that very hard and we continue to work it but we have made significant progress.

    Mr. HUNTER. Not on the F–22.

    Secretary DELANEY. No. On the F–22 testing program, the F–22 testing program is on schedule. I think it is important that with this testing on the F–22 where the actual flight testing fits into the overall testing program. If you had a pyramid you would see that the flight testing for the F–22 comes at the top of the pyramid but the real base and foundation for F–22 testing is 45,000 hours of wind tunnel testing, an enormous amount of structural testing, coupon testing for materials and for the codings on the aircraft. There is just an enormous base of testing. We have a flying test bed as you know, an airborne laboratory, and we have an airborne integration lavatory.
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    So the flight testing on F–22 is really to confirm the models that have been developed that describe the performance of the aircraft itself so as we are progressing through the F–22 we already were approaching 600 hours of testing. We have been at Mach 6. We demonstrated super crews. We have flown at an angle of attack of 26 degrees. We are exploring all elements of the flight test envelope and we find first that the inflight measurements are agreeing very well with the models that we have and that is very, very important because that does a couple of things for us.

    One, it helps us to look forward to the test points that we have laid out and to show how we can strategize and optimize the information that we get on succeeding test flights in order to match the kind of information that we need to fit into the model. But there are two really very interesting things that are being done in the F–22 test program to make it more efficient. The first thing is we are making extensive use of tankers. Prior, the test aircraft would take off, use up its fuel and come back. Now we are doing aerial refueling of the F–22 so for each test flight it has a longer time on station actually gathering data and that has been very valuable to us.

    The second thing is we are doing inflight telemetry so instead of recording all of this flight test data and then coming back and starting to analyze it, it is telemetered down to the ground. We are looking at how the data is coming in and we are doing analyst right away and optimizing that particular test flight for the data. So we are on a very good course for the testing of the F–22. We are coming into the avionics testing toward the end of the year. We are using—on the F–22 itself we have actually been flying the avionics in the test bed.
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    Mr. SISISKY. Excuse me. Because you have been able to do the aerial refueling, are you telling us you have reduced the number of test hours that you would ordinarily have, is that—

    Secretary DELANEY. We have made the test hours more productive so as we progress down here and we see each one of the test objectives then we can look at the original numbers of test hours that we had planned, see where we have met all of our test objectives and see if there is a potential to finish before the number of flight hours that we had originally put in—

    Mr. SISISKY. One more question as a follow up. What has the strike had to do with the testing and the production?

    Secretary DELANEY. That is really a very good question and a very question of the moment.

    Mr. SISISKY. The Chairman gave me that question.

    Secretary DELANEY. When the strike initially occurred, we sat down with the senior management at Boeing and we laid out an impact of if the strike lasted 30, 60 and 90 days. If the strike lasted 30 days we had full confidence that we would meet the Low-rate Initial Production (LRIP) criteria this year although I would say with slightly increased risk. And right now we are in maybe about day 33 or 34 of the strike so we are kind of at that juncture there.
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    If the strike goes 60 days, we do not think that we are going to meet the LRIP criteria for first flight of block 3.0 of the avionics software by the end of this calendar year. There is still an outside chance but we don't think we are going to make it if it goes 60 days. And then if it goes 90 days it has a different impact on what sector you are looking at. The delivery of the aircraft for the test program will not be that significantly impacted but particularly the engineering intensive things like the avionic software will be affected and also the structural test program will be affected.

    Mr. SISISKY. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman. Mr. Weldon.

    Mr. WELDON. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Secretary and General, you heard my opening statement and I raised concerns about the Air Force involvement and commitment to our missile defense tiered system approach. And my first question—I have three specific items I want to ask you about, the first is in this area and that is the cooperation and the perception that I have that perhaps there is not the degree of involvement between the Air Force and Ballistic Missile Defense Organization (BMDO) as there should be.

    My first question involves the airborne laser and the Air Force's commitment to that program and specifically why did the Air Force reduce its funding support for the program and then more specifically why did the Air Force not consult BMDO in taking the action to reduce the funding. The second question is in regard to Space-based Infrared Radar System Low Observable (SBIRS LO) where the Congress put specific language in on the management of that program last year that assured there would be a cooperative effort with BMDO, and again my understanding is there is not the level of cooperation between the Air Force and BMDO on SBIRS LO as perhaps there should be.
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    Secretary DELANEY. I will answer the first part of the Airborne Laser (ABL) question and then ask General Plummer to—there are programs always contending for priorities, as I am sure you know. In the case of the ABL, there were significant programs that were discussed at the department level, the Department of Defense level, on the ABL and its relative priorities. What the Air Force program has been is to maintain the current program that we are on through this fiscal year and to move the lethal shoot down from 03 to 05.

    But we structured that program along with the ABL line item in the UPL that if the Congress should restore the funding of $92 million in this fiscal year that we would remain on that FY03 shoot down so that was the structure of how we laid out the program. The program is basically the same through this year. We are modifying the aircraft but we have moved the lethal shoot down to 05.

    Mr. WELDON. Why wasn't that discussed with BMDO?

    Secretary DELANEY. I do not know what particular discussions on ABL were done with BMDO but I would like to come back to your BMDO question, particularly in the case of other programs because I have some very strong initiatives of cooperation with BMDO.

    General PLUMMER. I don't have much to add in terms of the question as it pertains to BMDO but the issue of funding for the actual ABL system itself is more an issue of priorities and affordability than it is an issue of cost and schedule and performance of the weapon system. I would point out to you that the weapon system has maintained or achieved all of its—what it is expected to do to this date and has done it very, very well. We have done a lot of atmospheric testing. It is proven that the propagation problem is not nearly as great as critics of the system would have said that it would be and the program is a viable program to shoot down something by 05.
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    We have lots of priority or lots of faith in the ABL and we think it is an integral part of the family of systems for theater ballistic missile defense and we look forward to bringing it on line.

    Mr. WELDON. Well, in fact, the statement in the Secretary's testimony says the ABL will be a key Air Force contributor to the nation's multi-layered theater missile defense architecture and that is why my question comes up. Why wasn't BMDO brought into that decision that was made by the Air Force? I understand every service is having budgetary pressures but I think there has got to be engaged dialogue with BMDO which has the strong support of these Committees in terms of that multi-layered approach that you referred to in your statement. So why wasn't there a dialogue there? Why isn't there that discussion?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, again, I am not familiar with the level of discussion that went on with BMDO with respect to the airborne laser program structure. It is quite clear that the Tactical Ballistic Missile Defense (TMD) focus programs for BMDO at the moment for theater missile defense are their Army program and the Navy programs. But the Air Force ABL program is at the moment an Air Force program.

    Mr. WELDON. But the funding was reduced significantly which my contention is has a direct impact on our missile defense capabilities and what you stated in your testimony is a key part of what you think the ABL is for and so that is your intention according to your statement, and I agree with that. If you are going to cut the program even though it is an Air Force program, I think you have an obligation to discuss that with BMDO and how that is going to impact their ability to implement that multi-tiered structure.
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    Secretary DELANEY. Well, as I said in my opening comments on your question, this is a Defense Department program so the status and the structure of the program given all the priorities was certainly discussed in great detail with the Department of Defense officials before the program was laid out the way it is in this year's budget.

    Mr. WELDON. The SBIRS question, SBIRS LO, is it the contention or does the Air Force now see an official role of interacting with BMDO on discussions and management of the SBIRS LO program, is that a part of your ongoing process?

    Secretary DELANEY. What we have done within the last month is General Kadish and I and the vice commander of the Air Force Space Command have formed what we call a Board of Directors for the SBIRS program and that program then we are working both the requirements and the technical design of the system so that it is compatible with the National Missile Defense (NMD), TMD requirements, particularly SBIRS LO. The driving requirement is for NMD, TMD.

    Mr. WELDON. Good.

    Secretary DELANEY. And then what we are doing is we are recognizing that there are also requirements that the Air Force Space Command has as well.

    Mr. WELDON. Right. I understand.

    Secretary DELANEY. Now what we are working toward here is to get a stability in the requirements so we are making the design so that it is primarily responsible for the NMD, TMD mission but that its capability in these other areas that are requested by the space command are reflected as well in the design. And I will say that we met for four hours a couple weeks ago on Saturday morning and we had not only the Air Force, the Air Force Space Command, and a video teleconference, we had General Kadish, we had the Large Scale Integration (LSI) contractor for BMD, we had the system assistance contractor for SBIRS LO, and they were representing also the two Preliminary Design Review (PDR) contractors, so a video teleconference with the Space Command. We just developed 20 action items to insure that we are doing exactly the point that you are raising.
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    Mr. WELDON. Good. I am glad to hear that. I was going to ask you about Joint Strike Fighter. I am sure my colleagues will because I have a lot of questions there. I do have one other quick question. In the language of last year's defense—this year's defense bill the Congress put in an additional $12 million for ejection seat technology which I referred to and the specific language of the Congress was that that money was to be used equally and fairly as the Air Force and Navy attempt to acquire a standardized ejection seat.

    My understanding, and I am asking this so that you can correct it for the record, is that what you are doing is giving all of that money to basically one contractor that is subfunding through three different subsidiary operations, including a Russian firm, that the White House intends for us to significantly subsidize an aircraft ejection seat manufacturer with U.S. tax dollars, I might add, and yet you are not funding a British firm that has established an operational capability in America, the Martin Baker Company, you are simply subsidizing what I believe are three separate subsidiaries of I believe it is the B.F. Goodrich Company. Can you explain how that meets the fairness criteria established with the added money in this year's defense bill of $12 million?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, I think the first thing is that we have established a program office at Wright Patterson to manage the ejection seat technology program. We have the $12 million and we understand very clearly that that $12 million is to be allocated among all viable seat competitors. Now as you know there has been tremendous fusion in this area over the last couple of years—

    Mr. WELDON. By one company, and we are all aware of that.
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    Secretary DELANEY. Right. They have three seats and Martin Baker has the fourth seat. In the process of conducting that competition the last time that I met with our team on that, we would expect that the money will be allocated according to your language, that is—

    Mr. WELDON. As fair.

    Secretary DELANEY.—equally among all viable seat—

    Mr. WELDON. Are you working with the Navy at Pax River on the same thing?

    Secretary DELANEY. We have been working with the Navy on that. I don't know the details of how the Navy is—

    General PLUMMER. We are working with the Navy. It is a joint program and they are involved in it with us.

    Mr. WELDON. I think the Navy perception might be different and we will have to ask them that but your contention is that you are working with the Navy?

    Secretary DELANEY. They show up at all of our meetings. I have been at two or three meetings and the Navy is present here and they are part of the program.

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    Mr. WELDON. Mr. Chairman, I just think this is something we have to look at because I don't think the reality of that is occurring. I think there are two separate efforts going on here and if we are going to have a standard ejection seat, I understand there are differences in the aircraft, but we ought to try to standardize that process and be fair with all of those companies that are involved and not single out any one company for special support or consideration.

    Secretary DELANEY. If I could just add, both the Air Force and Navy are funding $24.5 million each in the 01 and 05 in the President's budget for qualification program directed by the Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition Technology and Logistics for qualification of the K–36 ejection seat.

    Mr. WELDON. Just one final point. Is there an effort to subsidize this Russian firm in a Connecticut operation? The rumor was that there was up to $40 million being directed by the White House through the Air Force to help to subsidize the opening of a manufacturing facility in Connecticut to produce or sell the Russian ejection seat in America as an equal competitor to American companies. Is that in fact happening?

    Secretary DELANEY. None of that has come through my office and it could not be done without coming through my office.

    Mr. WELDON. So you are not aware of any attempt to establish what has already been announced by the Governor of Connecticut as the establishment of a firm that has the Russian technology in Connecticut on ejection seats? You are not aware of that?

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    Secretary DELANEY. I am not aware of any specific work that is going on. Whether there are studies being done out there, I don't know, but it has not reached any stage of maturity where—

    Mr. WELDON. Are you, General, aware of that?

    General PLUMMER. Well, I am aware of the fact that as is Dr. Delaney as he has stated that there is an effort to qualify a Russian seat through a company in Connecticut but I believe your question was—

    Mr. WELDON. Which is a shell company, I understand.

    General PLUMMER. I can't speak to that but your first question was are we receiving pressure from someone—

    Mr. WELDON. Not pressure. Guidance from the White House.

    General PLUMMER. Guidance from the White House. And the answer to that is in our offices we have not received any pressure or guidance, I am sorry—

    Mr. WELDON. No interest on the part of the White House?

    General PLUMMER. None that has been conveyed to me.

    Mr. WELDON. Okay. Thank you.
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    Mr. HUNTER. I thank the gentleman, and maybe, Mr. Secretary, you could look at that matter and maybe report to us if you have any additional information.

    Secretary DELANEY. We will do that.

    Mr. HUNTER. I appreciate that. Mr. Pickett is now going to ask his questions. We have a little bit of a difficult situation here that Mr. Weldon and I have to leave briefly. Mr. Bartlett is going to take the Chair and we are going to be back hopefully in about 30 minutes or so. I want also that the Chairman of the Full Committee, Mr. Spence, is with us and I wanted to thank him for being with us. And, Mr. Chairman, do you have any questions that you would like to ask at this time? Okay, well, I thank the gentleman from South Carolina for attending this hearing.

    Mr. Pickett.

    Mr. PICKETT. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Gentlemen, the department has stated that they need 19 of the Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) aircraft and at one time there was some discussion about JSTARS, some of the JSTARS being sold to NATO. I don't know where the NATO proposal is at the present time but could you tell me what your plans are for this weapon system whether you are going to close down the line. I know that you have asked for some $70 million for a radar technology insertion program in the 2001 budget and there is some indication that you may be moving toward closing down that line. Can you tell us where that is going?

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    Secretary DELANEY. The first thing, the Joint Requirements Oversight Council (JROC) validated requirement for 19 aircraft remains so there is a requirement for 19 aircraft. I believe in the last QDR the people who put the QDR together said that six of those 19 aircraft would be purchased by NATO and so therefore the U.S. buy was set at 13. Since that time, we have added a 14th and a 15th aircraft. The 15th aircraft is fully funded in this year's budget.

    Additionally, in the Unfunded Priorities List (UPL) for this year there is $40 million which would either be for shutting down the line on JSTARS or advanced buy for the 16th long lead for the 16th aircraft. So at the moment we will produce 15 aircraft and we are now seeing what the decisions are for continuing the line.

    Mr. PICKETT. The 19 aircraft requirement that we mention, and you said six of those were supposed to have been for NATO, if NATO doesn't buy those six does that country still need 19 to meet our requirement?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, the JROC has identified a requirement for 19 JSTARS aircraft, yes.

    Mr. PICKETT. Do you think it is wise that we discontinue this program before completing the buy to meet the requirement?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, first of all, as I said, we are poised to engage in this 16th aircraft if that turns out to be the decision. I must say we are also looking at other potential ways of fulfilling that 19 aircraft capability that we have identified as required so we are looking at such things as whether a JSTARS like capability could be provided on a payload for the Global Hawk or Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). We are looking at those other options but right now we are awaiting a decision on whether the line will be continued.
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    Mr. PICKETT. The final question I have has to do with the CV–22. This is another program that seems to be—well, in this case it seems to be a matter of considerable cost growth occurring in the production of this aircraft and there is a delay, I believe, in getting these aircraft built, and there is some question about whether the simulator that is required in order to conduct the training of the pilots for the aircraft is going to be available in time to meet the service requirements. Can you tell us what is happening with that?

    Secretary DELANEY. On the CV aircraft, on the V–22 aircraft itself, of which the Air Force is buying the CV version, the Navy who is the acquisition service on the V–22 in negotiating the lot for purchase found that there were several significant budget problems associated with that and they had to do with the learning curve that had been assumed versus what is actually realized. That is, they had assumed a steeper learning curve than is actually realized. That adds significant cost, the integration of special mission equipment on the airplane and also some adjustments for the assumed inflation rate.

    So we are right now, the Navy is structuring the budget to correspond with this new information. They have assigned a—or they have constituted a study group called Cost Reduction Affordability Team (CRAFT) under Admiral Scoffield, to go down and look at what are the potential cost savings on the V–22 and that report should be out in approximately two months. So the knowledge of this needed restructuring of the budget is something that we are working on at the moment plus having an independent group supporting the Navy on that. On the trainer, perhaps General Plummer could talk to that.

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    General PLUMMER. I think the trainer is rolled up in the same issues that we have with the aircraft itself. I am not familiar with the specifics of the trainer but we are aware that there is a problem in getting the trainer. We are still working with the program office which as Dr. Delaney said is a Navy led program office to determine the actual details of that problem.

    Mr. PICKET. Thank you. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    Mr. BARTLETT. [presiding] Thank you very much. The Chair now recognizes Mr. Chambliss.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Gentlemen, the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD) cost analysis group came out the other day with a report that indicated there is going to be about a $9 billion cost overrun in the next ten years or so on the F–22. And if you would address that, please, I would appreciate your comments on that.

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, let us see. For the F–22 we have it identified as Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) costs and production costs. If you look—and we expect, that is, the Air Force expects to be within the budget caps on both the EMD and the production program on F–22. That is the first thing. What is our experience so far in the EMD program? We are about 85% complete in the EMD program. We still expect to be within the cost caps on the EMD program.

    We have had a very, very active EMD cost reduction program so as we go through the EMD program there have been a series of issues that have caused cost growth. In total, that amounts to $667 million cost growth. But we have potential savings identified and a large part of that already realized in the EMD program of $860 million so if you look at the puts and takes on this we are under our EMD cap on the program.
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    Now we are using that same kind of a discipline on the production cost reduction program. That is, we are working with the contractor to look through all of the manufacturing processes, look at the materials costs, look at the assembly processes to strongly control costs on this program, and we have a list of where we expect these production cost reductions to be realized. So we feel good about the fact that we expect to bring this production of the F–22 under the cost cap.

    Now of course we work with the K all the time on these kind of things and we sit down and compare all these numbers. Their position is, well, if you don't realize these production cost reduction elements that you are talking about the cost will be significantly above where you are saying. We say, yes, that is right. We have proven that we can manage it in EMD and we are strongly working that in the production cost reduction program.

    It is important to say that we meet every month with the executives of the companies on the F–22 program. And these costs are tracked very carefully in terms of where they are going, what the projections are, where the potential cost savings are so this is reviewed on a frequent basis.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. From a procurement standpoint isn't the F–22 on a fixed price basis?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes. Our first lots are fixed price and of course what we have drawn is a target price curve which starts right after the fixed price lots and draws down the subsequent price of the lots bought on the F–22. We have negotiated that—we have an agreement with the contractor that that is the target price curve that we are going to follow here. Now we actually have to negotiate that as we come up to subsequent buys on the F–22 but we know where we have to be in order to come under that cost cap.
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    Mr. CHAMBLISS. What I want to make sure of is that this Committee as well as the Appropriations Committee, particularly after last year's problems in the appropriation process, understand that from a cost perspective we are on target with the F–22. We are within our cost caps.

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. And experience has shown us that we are going to be able to make those savings that are necessary to insure that we stay under those cost caps, is that a fair statement?

    Secretary DELANEY. That is a fair statement. We are doing everything within our purview and power to make sure that we are on a course that takes us down that target cost curve.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. And the testing on the F–22, is it going in accord with the plans that were laid out two years ago now, I guess?

    Secretary DELANEY. It is a great story. I mean the testing on the F—we have to say to ourselves there are some things that we are really doing right and this test program is going extremely well and this F–22 aircraft will really revolutionize air to air superiority capability.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. Switching weapons just a minute, we are reducing the buy this year on the C–17 from the scheduled 15 down to 12. Can you tell me what effect that is going to have on our multi-year buy and on the long-term commitment to buy the C–17?
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    Secretary DELANEY. Well, the answer is it will not have a significant impact on the multi-year buy. That is, the multi-year buy has been preserved. That has been negotiated with the contractor. I think there the really interesting thing is our people had the foresight to structure the contract so that it was possible within the terms of the contract to essentially sell our place in line for some aircraft without breaking the multi-year contract. So that is I think a good news story there.

    We do need in order to stay on the delivery schedule, we changed the profile from 15, 15, 5 to 12, 15 and 8, so the three aircraft were displaced from 01 to 03. In order to preserve the manufacturing schedule of the contractor, we need approval from the Congress to apply the long lead items procurement as if the delivery were 15, 15, 5, but with respect to the flow of work, the flow of funds to the contractor, the acceptance of aircraft by the Air Force, that is preserved within the multi-year program that we have.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. And I know you have got in the mix too the potential sale of I believe three aircraft to United Kingdom. Can you give us any update on that where that stands? I think a decision is forthcoming in short term, I believe.

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, in April. We are anxiously looking forward to that decision. It is a testament to the flexibility of the C–17 program that these three aircraft can be delivered to the British while not disturbing our delivery schedule. The need for these three aircraft is a very short-term need and that need was actually recognized by the British from their operations in Kosovo. They need some short-term lift capability. We are ready to fill that need. They are also looking at a potential of another 10 or 12 aircraft for an intermediate term.
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    In the long run there is LTA, a large theater aircraft program that NATO will be looking at so we hope that the C–17 will be chosen to fill the short-term needs of the British. We stand ready to help them in the intermediate term as well.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. We have committed, I believe, about 120 C–17s and the fact, if I understand what you are saying, of reducing from 15 to 12 this year has no effect on the multi-year buy from a numbers perspective.

    Secretary DELANEY. No, it does not. There is one part of it because the engines are on a separate contract and there may be a need for something on the order of $850,000 to cover the additional interest because of the engines that would be displaced by that but that is still to be negotiated.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. What about the Joint Strike Fighter, where are we there with respect to the development of that program?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, of course the Joint Strike Fighter is in the concept demonstration phase. We have two contractors on board. Each of the contractors are constructing two aircraft. The Joint Strike Fighter, the main thing that we are trying to get with the Joint Strike Fighter, because a very large number of these aircraft will eventually be purchased and they will be for both the Air Force, the Navy and the Marines, so the main thing that we are trying to do there is to get an affordable platform.

    So in the current stage that we are in in this concept demonstration program these are experimental aircraft. They are not prototypes. There are three key performance parameters. One is to show the affordability and commonality. That is that you can have an aircraft that does both conventional take off and landing, carrier operations, and short take off and vertical landing and still maintain a significant fraction of commonality in those three vehicle types. That is the first thing.
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    The second thing in the program is that we are demonstrating the low speed handling characteristics for carrier operations. And the third thing that we are demonstrating is the ability to do a vertical landing. So that is what this Joint Strike Fighter experimental program is. Now another very significant part of that is also to demonstrate that the technologies that are required for the Joint Strike Fighter program in this concept definition phase are all in the category of low risk.

    That is, each one of these technologies has been either demonstrated in the JSF or demonstrated in other platforms that operate in a similar environment so at the conclusion of this phase of the program we expect to enter into engineering and manufacturing development with a technologically proven aircraft and the main element then is integrating all of these technologies in engineering and manufacturing development.

    We expect the flight of the conventional take off and landing aircraft to occur some time in late spring and the vertical landing aircraft to occur in the late fall or early winter.

    Mr. CHAMBLISS. You responded to Mr. Sisisky about the effect of the Boeing strike on the F–22 and I believe the avionics software is where it is going to be a problem there. What about with Joint Strike Fighter, is that Boeing strike creating any problems there?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, it will have an impact on the program in the same way. We are obviously strongly hoping that this strike is settled.
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    Mr. CHAMBLISS. I appreciate that. You make my case for the public depots. Thank you. Let me just reiterate something that Mr. Pickett talked to you about and that is JSTARS. I don't think there is a more critical weapon system out there right now and particularly from a 2MRC scenario. And I hope the decision is going to be made that the money that you are looking at there is going to be long lead money for the 16th JSTARS because I just don't think there is any question but what we need to go to the full complement of 19. That is a great weapon system and we look forward on this Committee to continuing to work with you to get that full complement of 19. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    Mr. BARTLETT. Thank you very much. We now turn to Mr. Saxton.

    Mr. SAXTON. Thank you, Mr. Secretary. Let me follow up on a conversation that you and I had earlier and one that ties in with the line of questioning on C–17 from Mr. Chambliss. And I think that this will be an easy set of questions for you to answer. But for the record, are you pleased with the way the production line of the C–17 has come along?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, again, I think that is another outstanding story because the production line on the C–17 is really something to see. I was just out there and went through the production line in the last month or so. The contractor working with the Air Force, and I think this is again a good example of partnership, has laid out a program where front end investment is applied to improve the efficiency of the production line with a target to the price that we want to get to on the C–17.

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    And if you see what they have done to automate the production line and set up parallel lines and how that gets down into the very details of the number of welds that can be done in a given amount of time monitoring the quality of the finished part and so forth. And I will say this also, it is really a great thing to see the spirit of the team that is manufacturing the C–17 and I think that we are seeing here what American industry can really do. And I think it shows up both in the quality of the product and in the numbers that they are retrieving.

    Mr. SAXTON. The information that I got from some folks a few weeks ago is the production is actually ahead of schedule, is that correct?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, that is correct.

    Mr. SAXTON. Is it true that the production is actually of the last airplane to come off the line was almost six months ahead of schedule?

    Secretary DELANEY. When I talked to them on the order of a month ago, they were about five months ahead so if you look at the nominal production rate of 15 a month and let's say they are four or five months ahead it is on the order of five to six aircraft. Now you can see why we are able to send three aircraft or four or however many they want and still maintain—

    Mr. SAXTON. And still maintain the quantity of aircraft that we thought we were going to buy to begin with. How about the operational capabilities of the C–17, were you happy with it in Kosovo?

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    Secretary DELANEY. Well, it is again a poster child, I think, of operations in Kosovo. For the number of aircraft that were available to us, the fraction of cargo that was delivered by the C–17 was significantly above the normal for the number of aircraft that were available there so its operation in Kosovo was slightly short of fantastic with mission capable rates in the 90s, very short turnaround time. It was a super star for Kosovo operations, I would say.

    Mr. SAXTON. There was one operational problem, not in Kosovo, there was one operational problem with regard to brigade air drop, which was explained to me down in Fort Bragg a couple of years ago. Have we made any progress in solving that brigade drop problem?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, there is significant progress on that. The Army has a given requirement for how quickly it can air deploy a brigade and there were really two issues there for trying to get that time down to the Army requirement. The first one because of not a complete knowledge of the turbulence behind the C–17, we had a large separation distance so the aircraft coming over the target area were separated to a very conservative distance.

    The second thing was there was a single rail down for pushing material out the back end but the C–17 was designed in such a way that it was possible to put parallel rails so that the two things that have significantly improved is you can push out two rails of equipment on the C–17 which significantly decreases the deployment time and the other thing is we have done a lot of work on actually characterizing the flow fields and the turbulence behind the C–17 and we have been able to get the separation distance such that I think it is on the order of a little bit less than 30,000 feet so that we can now meet the time requirements of the Army. Then for combat operations of course those can be adjusted to the need.
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    Mr. SAXTON. When I was at Bragg, I think if my memory serves me correctly they had a target of getting the time for the complete brigade drop down to 29 minutes. Have we met that target?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, we are there.

    Mr. SAXTON. That is good news. With regard to the air mobility requirement study, that study should be coming out for us to take a look at in the foreseeable future?

    Secretary DELANEY. General Plummer, do you want to take the MRSO5 and the outsizing?

    General PLUMMER. We are doing the study on the MRS05 and the outsize and oversize analysis of alternatives. We currently predict, as you know that is a joint staff led air mobility command collaborated report, we currently hope that that report will be available to us in the summer of this year. We recognize that that is later than all of us would like but we are confident by talking with the J4 folks that by summertime or early fall we will have the results of that report.

    And that will give us a more clear insight into what the actual outsize and oversize requirements are going to be in order to be able to provide the lift required to execute the national military strategy of two near simultaneous Major Theater Wars (MTWs).

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    Mr. SAXTON. Do you anticipate that there will be a coordination of an effort to modernize and upgrade the C–5 as well as to procure C–17s beyond 135?

    Secretary DELANEY. We are currently in the process of looking at modernizing some C–5s. We have 126 of those in the inventory and our current thrust is to see which of those, perhaps all, we don't know at this point, it would be prudent to modernize. As you know, the reliability rates or the mission capable rates of the C–5 are lower than what we would like and that has caused us a problem.

    Mr. SAXTON. About 60%, isn't it?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes, sir.

    Mr. SAXTON. Down around 60%.

    Secretary DELANEY. That is about right. It is a little bit higher for the Bs and a little bit lower for the As but it kind of all averages out. And so what we are doing is trying—and part of what we will get out of the MRS05 study is a clearer definition of the requirement and ability to determine which mix of C–5, modernized C–5s, and C–17s would best meet the requirement.

    Mr. SAXTON. Then what about the second part of the question, the C–17 beyond the 135, is that—

    Secretary DELANEY. We are looking at it. Again, the MRS05 will help us to determine that but clearly one thing we do know at this point and that is that the C–17 has performed remarkably every place we have asked it to do so. Particularly its advantage lies in being able to get into austere air fields with short runways. We saw that in spades in Tulsa, in support of the Bosnia operations and in Albania in support of Kosovo, so as we look toward the results of the Angle of Attack (AOA) on outsize and oversize and the MRS05 study we hope to be able to definitize more exactly what we are going to need.
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    Mr. SAXTON. I have one final question. I know you have to go, Mr. Chairman, and I am supposed to go over and take your seat so let me just ask this question and then I will walk over there. Mr. Secretary, with regard to the tactical role of the C–17, it has been said that the C–130J and the C–17 compliment each other. Is that a fair statement and does that concept continue to make sense?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, certainly the C–130J throughout the interlift could be a significant compliment to the C–17 and the issue is obviously very scenario dependent but the C–130J has its role in the airlift and there is obviously some overlap there but the C–130J is a unique platform that I think does compliment the C–17. And, as you know, the Air Force has identified a requirement for 168 of the C–130Js as part of our program.

    Mr. SAXTON. [presiding] Yes, sir. Okay, thank you. We look forward to the release of the study this spring or summer and look forward to talking with you more about it. Thank you very much. Mrs. Sanchez.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. I want to talk about the Joint Strike Fighter. And I guess I will start with General Plummer. I know that there is going to be a follow-on session to the Joint Strike Fighter after this but the other day we had a hearing with General Williams from the Marine Corps and he talked about how the Marines had literally put all their eggs in one basket and are really relying on the Joint Strike Fighter for the future to alleviate their needs and replace some of their aircraft.

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    I am interested in from the Air Force perspective, General, if the Joint Strike Fighter program is delayed, what effect will it have on the Air Force?

    General PLUMMER. The Joint Strike Fighter is the aircraft that the Air Force currently intends to replace its F–16 fleet and perhaps its A–10 fleet with in the future. It will be our pre-eminent strike aircraft that will do both close air support as well as interdiction type strike missions. And as I am sure you know, we have the majority of the backbone, if you will, of our fighter fleet is the F–16. We have more of those than we have anything else in the inventory.

    Those aircraft, although we are still purchasing them today, we are not buying very many and the plan of course is to as we begin to phase those out, which about the end of this decade we will begin to do in fairly significant numbers, the plan is to replace those with the Joint Strike Fighter. Therefore, if we delay the Joint Strike Fighter significantly or at all we will exacerbate the problem of having to retire aircraft and have no aircraft to replace them with. So the Air Force is fully committed to the Joint Strike Fighter and we would not like to see the aircraft delayed for operational reasons.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. As I recall, when we built the F–16 it was built for a 15-year life and some of your aircraft, F–16s, now have 20 years on them, is that more or less what is going on, and then when we look at the production schedule if the Joint Strike Fighter stays on we are talking about late 20s, maybe 30-year old aircraft being replaced, is that correct?

    General PLUMMER. Not entirely. We don't purchase aircraft with a life span that is necessarily dictated by years of service. We tend to think of aircraft in terms of hours, flight hours of service. And generally with fighter aircraft that number is about 8,000. So as we look at the utilization of an aircraft across its life span the amount that we utilize it determines essentially how long we are going to be able to keep it in the inventory. Now that is one factor that goes into that equation. It is not all of it but that is certainly one of them.
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    There are things you can do to aircraft, of course, to keep them in the inventory longer. You can upgrade them and modernize them and we have a program to do that. We are constantly doing that with all of our aircraft. Or you can do service life extensions on them, but you can only do those for so long because the technology that you are extending is still dated technology so there are many things you can do but that is kind of how we judge the service life of an aircraft.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. And, General, is it fair to say that the utilization of your aircraft is higher than you had projected initially?

    General PLUMMER. I think that if you look at the past decade of things we have been involved in particularly the conflicts that we participated in starting with the Gulf War leading up to Bosnia and then most recently Kosovo and you add to that the constant presence requirements we have to enforce the no fly zones in northern and southern Iraq, it is clear that we have used aircraft, we have been utilizing our aircraft at a slightly higher rate than we had initially intended when they were purchased.

    I believe that that is what was referred to in the opening statement when it was mentioned that General Ryan had testified that our aircraft average age is 20 years and that they are aging at about another year for every two-thirds so we actually are getting—the fleet is getting a lot older because we are not recapitalizing them. So I think, yes, over the last ten years we have used them a lot.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. Okay. Thank you. And then, Secretary, it was always interesting because in particular this Committee has been looking at the F–22 and the Joint Strike Fighter, two what I would consider completely different aircraft, different need for them, a different deployment for them, and yet a lot of people confuse these two for some reason. In fact, I remember talking in my district about the Joint Strike Fighter and having an editorial talking about how crazy I was on the F–22. But could you just reiterate for me with respect to the differences and in particular the unit cost between the F–22 and the Joint Strike Fighter?
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    Secretary DELANEY. Sure. The two together form our high-low mix. The number one priority in the Air Force is air superiority and the F–22 is the number one priority acquisition program. So the F–22 has some very unique characteristics. One, it can cruise supersonically without going into after burner. Two, it is a very stealthy platform. Three, it has integrated avionics. And, fourth, it has vertical thrusts so it has very significant maneuvering capability.

    And it is that combination of those four characteristics that will allow it to dominate the skies well into the next century. That then creates the environment where our other assets can operate and so the primary air superiority mission is carried out by the F–22. The F–22 also has two engines. And the strike part of that is then carried out by the F–17 in an environment that is created by the air superiority capability of the F–22.

    Now the JSF itself has the high-low compliment, high capability on the F–22 and the low cost on the JSF, matches a number of aircraft that are needed to perform both of those missions. But the JSF itself will have a significant capability for carrying out its mission in terms of its avionics suite, its stealth, and its ability to deal with an advanced environment.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. And a price more or less on the unit cost of a Joint Strike Fighter would be?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, we have a cost goal on the—there are these three versions of it so the—
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    Mrs. SANCHEZ. But a target number that you are hitting for. It is not the same, in other words, as the F–22. They are two completely different—

    Secretary DELANEY. No, no, no, different class. For the conventional take off and landing the cost goal is $28 million a copy on the objective system and we have not yet determined what the threshold cost is but it will be a little bit above that. For the short take off vertical landing, that aircraft is several million dollars more costly because of all the special features that it has on it and the carrier version is somewhere in between.

    Mrs. SANCHEZ. Great. Thank you very much.

    Mr. SAXTON. Thank you, Mrs. Sanchez. Mr. Kuykendall.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. Two items of similar kind of subject matter. You speak of air superiority in using the F–22 to maintain air superiority. What aircraft is the one that is going to maintain air superiority from missiles?

    Secretary DELANEY. Excuse me.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. What aircraft is going to maintain air superiority for missiles so they are not shot down by a missile?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, the F–22 of course in an environment that has the upgraded surface to air missiles, is that what you are talking about?
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    Mr. KUYKENDALL. I mean if nobody flies up to shoot at you and your only challenge is like in Kosovo with a guy shooting missiles at you basically, the F–22, is it designed to take out missile sites or is it designed to take out aircraft and if we don't have aircraft threats what aircraft are we using to take out the missile sites?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, the F–22, first of all, by stealth reduces significantly the engagement zone of the missiles so through its super cruise capability and its stealth characteristics it has access to a much larger fraction of the battlefield. It can also launch missiles at the surface to air missile launch sites.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. So the anticipation is an F–22 is going to have a developed piece of it that is going to do like the I guess it is the F–16 CJ version or what we used to call the old A–6s that would drive HARM missiles and shoot back down at a radar site. Because, quite frankly, we haven't fought anybody lately that has had an Air Force capable of competing with what we already put up there for air superiority but we have fought a couple of guys that have made a real pain in the ass out of their air defense system.

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. And Kosovo just learned from what they saw in Iraq and so they are getting smarter and they managed to get a Stealth fighter in the process. Probably dumb luck more than it was anything else but they got one just the same. So what are we using, which piece of this aircraft acquisition is it going to be? Are we going to make a HARM version of the F–22 to go after the missile base? So far that is what they can afford to buy. They can't afford to buy the airplanes. They can afford to buy the missiles.
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    General PLUMMER. Well, the aircraft is designed as an air superiority fighter which means it will clear the air of both air, opposition air. It will fly in the offensive counter air role and it will also have the capability to take on the new generation, the double digit generation surface to air missiles that are being proliferated even today by other countries.

    It will have to do that of course in conjunction with everything else on the battlefield. That is the way we do the business. We don't design a single platform or a single weapon system to alone go after another enemy system. It will do it in conjunction with everything else. The intelligence preparation of the battlefield, the intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance assets, the suppression of enemy air defense assets, all of those together will provide the synergistic effect that we need on the battlefield but the F–22 is the centerpiece, envisioned to be the Air Force's centerpiece of that synergistic fight.

    And it will do that, as Dr. Delaney said, by exploiting its advantages of stealth and super cruise primarily but its integrated avionics systems will also be a big contributor to finding, to locating and targeting and tracking and destroying those kinds of enemy assets.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. Changing subjects to the Joint Strike Fighter, the question has been raised by some recently in the press, in particular I guess among the builders of this new aircraft in the future, is do we go to one company or do we go to two companies or do we split, both of them build it, both of them develop it. Could you give me your thoughts on that at least as well as they are developed today? This is the first I have had a chance to ask anybody their opinion of it so I would really like to kind of get a relatively broad look of what you are thinking about.
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    Secretary DELANEY. The baseline strategy on the JSF at the moment is winner take all. However, we are very carefully looking at alternatives. The defense acquisition executive is the primary responsible person for this program and as you know the specific acquisition executive rotates between the Air Force and the Navy, depending on what part of the two-year cycle it is so right now the Air Force has responsibility for management of the program.

    When you look at the JSF aircraft right now the total plan buy is on the order of 1700 units. No, that is combined Air Force, Navy and Marines. Now so when you look at that and you look into the future and you ask in light of the task of the Department of Defense to have assured access to the kind of industrial capability that is required to produce aircraft like this in the future.

    Secretary Gansler instituted a study to look at the overall structure of the industry and the procurement requirements for the JSF in the process of examining a series of alternatives in terms of what kind of other relationships other than winner take all might be better suited to reach the objectives that we all have to have here and that is to have assured access to the industrial capability to build these kinds of aircraft. That is currently under study. We expect to be coming over in the next few months to brief Members of Congress on that status of that study.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. I just want to be sure, it is 1700 some aircraft. I don't want all the builders here to just faint dead away. That is the Air Force piece. There is about 150 for UK and 1,000 more for Navy and Marine Corps so probably closer to 3,000 units total when we buy it.
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    General PLUMMER. The total buy is just over 3,000.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. Okay, but the Air Force piece is just over 1,700. Currently 1,763 I guess is the last one in the QDR.

    Secretary DELANEY. 1,753. Excuse me. It is 1,763 for the Air Force, 480 for the Navy, and 609 for the Marine Corps.

    Mr. KUYKENDALL. That was the number I was thinking when you said 1,700. I figured we saw Lockheed and Boeing both fold up their doors. Thank you very much.

    Mr. SAXTON. Thank you, Mr. Kuykendall. Mr. Taylor.

    Mr. TAYLOR. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Secretary Delaney, on page 8 of your testimony you say that the B–1 flew 100% of the sorties assigned.

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes.

    Mr. TAYLOR. How many was that and what did it contribute towards the overall effort? You were pretty vague about that.

    Secretary DELANEY. The number of sorties, I don't know. I gave earlier the—

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    Mr. TAYLOR. You literally could have assigned it one sortie if it showed up, if you follow me.

    Secretary DELANEY. I don't have it in terms of the number of sorties. As I mentioned earlier, they delivered 5,000 weapons but I don't have the number of actual sorties.

    Mr. TAYLOR. Could you give me that in terms of the number of sorties and the percentage of the total effort? My second question would be, and I forgot, the hearings are all starting to blend into each other but during the course of one of them it was brought to my attention the high demand for E–3s around the world has limited the ability for them to be used in the counter narcotics effort. And in a visit with the head of our military group down in Colombia one of the things he emphasized was the need for intelligence.

    I notice where several intelligence gathering platforms are mentioned in your testimony and I have got to confess I have only made it to page 20 but I don't see where you have asked for any additional E–3s, Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS).

    Secretary DELANEY. We have not requested additional E–3s. We are managing the fleet of E–3s right now as what we call a low density, high demand asset, which means we don't have very many of them and everybody wants them. They are currently or continuously tasked to support both Operation Northern Watch as well as Operation Southern Watch as well as taskings in the Pacific theater. The Air Force has attempted to support when they can the counter drug requirement for U.S. Southern Command and has been able to do so periodically in the past.
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    I am aware of the criticism of which you speak. I have read the reports but as far as actually knowing the actual details of that, I can't talk to it. We will be glad to take it for the record but it is actually an operations type question, I think, as opposed to an acquisition question.

    [The information referred to can be found in the Appendix.]

    Mr. TAYLOR. Well, I wish you would address that because I am aware that we faced quite a setback with the loss of Howard Air Force Base. I am aware that the runway at Manta is not as good as we thought it would be and therefore is going to require a lot more effort but that is still not the only large bodied aircraft capable runway in that theater and so I would hate to think that that is the only limiting factor. But if you would get to me on that because again one of the things the group commander stressed down there was since apparently the Colombians aren't going to be growing their Army they got to make better use of the Army they have.

    The last question would be General Ryan sent over his unfunded requirements list and from your point of view are there any items on the list more important to the Air Force than things that made it through and were included on your requirements list, your funded requirements list, and if you were in a position to swap one for another given today's needs versus when you might have put this list together but which might well have been last November for all I know, would you do anything along those lines?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, of course we have an Air Force corporate process which has a group structure to it and then a council structure to it so the process that puts the budget together as well as the unfunded priorities list goes through that corporate process so that it best represents the priorities of the Air Force and those are the priorities that come out. There is, as I am sure you know, a lot of horse trading in that corporate process but we believe that produces the best for the Air Force by going through the corporate process.
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    Mr. TAYLOR. So if I may paraphrase you, you would not ask for any changes to your funded priority list, you would not be willing to give any of them up for something on the unfunded list?

    Secretary DELANEY. Not as it comes out of the corporate process. I support that list.

    Mr. TAYLOR. Those are my questions. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

    Mr. SAXTON. Mr. Secretary, I have one more question and then I think we are going to wrap up the public hearing and Mr. Hunter will take back over for the closed briefing. Mr. Secretary, with regard to the case E–135 re-engining requirement, you discussed the requirement and I believe there are a couple of options that you are looking at with regard to new engines or different engines. Can you discuss that situation with us?

    Secretary DELANEY. Well, the re-engining process for the KC–135 is well along now installing CFM–56 engines.

    Mr. SAXTON. I should know more about this but let me just ask you, as we move from the old model to the new model, which is the R model, is that right?

    Secretary DELANEY. Yes.

    Mr. SAXTON. The engines that we have heretofore been installing as replacements are relatively expensive, are they not, and as a consequence we have not been doing that engine replacement at a very rapid rate?
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    General Plummer.

    General PLUMMER. Let me just kind of clarify what we are-we have KC–135 As, Es and Rs. Es are KC–135s with the old engines as are As. Rs are the same airplanes but they now have the new engine. That is the difference. We are re-engining the Es to As with the CFM–56 engine.

    Mr. SAXTON. Now wait a minute. You are going from Es to As?

    General PLUMMER. Right. That is what we are doing.

    Mr. SAXTON. And when you get an A, is that with a new engine?

    General PLUMMER. Es to Rs, I am sorry, Es to Rs. And that process is not only putting four engines on the aircraft but it also does about 25 other upgrades to the aircraft including landing gear, structural upgrades and things like that. And so when you talk about the cost of a kit to upgrade an E to an R all of that is included in the cost of the kit, not just the engines.

    Mr. SAXTON. Okay. Is there not some thought being given to a different variety of engine?

    General PLUMMER. Yes. There is a study that has been done looking at a request to take the engines off the C–141 as we take those out of the inventory and use those engines on the Es or the As if you call it that to upgrade those. The study has been submitted to OSD and I believe has been signed out to the Congress just this week and basically the Air Force position is that we do not want to mix types of engines within the fleet. We would prefer to keep all of the engines the same for commonality, ease of maintenance, logistical supply and those types of things.
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    Mr. SAXTON. General Plummer, is there thought being given to an engine other than the engines on the C–141s? I thought you were in the process of making a choice between the old 141 engines and another engine, perhaps a new engine.

    General PLUMMER. The CFM–56 is the only other engine that I am aware of that we are—and we are currently using that one in conjunction with looking at the engine that came off of the C–141. If there is another engine in the mix, I am not aware of it.

    Mr. SAXTON. Okay. Thank you very much. Mr. Bateman.

    Mr. BATEMAN. Mr. Chairman, thank you, but I have been in another Committee in a markup and I wouldn't even know what question to ask.

    Mr. SAXTON. Mr. Hunter, I think we have asked all our questions and if you would like to come back and resume your wonderful chairing of the hearing.

    Mr. HUNTER. [presiding] Thanks, Jim. First, I want to thank Mr. Saxton for his great work. Thank you very much, Jim, for taking the Chair. We are going to go now to the classified portion but I thought what we might do before we do that classified session with respect to JSF is let us have—does the GAO have an unclassified presentation they want to make? Okay.

    Why don't we do that and also have the Air Force side of that unclassified statement, so let us have a little give and take here before we go into the classified portion. So whoever is going to handle this for the Air Force, come on up and the General Accounting Office (GAO), come on up, we will do this. Is General Howe going to be our man of the hour? Okay. You are wearing the right uniform, General Howe. Come on up.
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    And I was just reminded by Mr. Thompson it is not truly classified. It is just proprietary. It still means the rest of you folks don't get to hear it. Okay, go ahead. Mr. Rodrigues, thank you for being with us. You have been with us a number of times and the floor is yours. Let us go ahead and we would like to hear your position with respect to JSF and then General Howe, we certainly want to hear your position also. And, Secretary Delaney, jump in any time.

    Secretary DELANEY. Okay.

    Mr. HUNTER. Mr. Rodrigues.


    Mr. RODRIGUES. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and I assume my full statement will be submitted for the record and I will proceed with an oral—

    Mr. HUNTER. Without objection.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Thank you. Mr. Chairman, Members of the Subcommittees, I am pleased to be here to discuss our draft report on Joint Strike Fighter, which are requested by Chairman Shays of the Subcommittee on National Security, Committee on Government Reform has graciously allowed us to use today. Before I get into the details of our report, I would like to emphasize the importance of Joint Strike Fighter decisions to reforming the DOD weapons acquisition process.
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    As you know, the Department is in the process of rewriting its directives governing systems acquisitions. It is referred to as the DOD 5000 series. At the Department's request, we have been participating in this effort through input to its working group. The objective of the rewrite is to bring about better, cheaper, faster outcomes in weapons programs. It is acquisition reform. Our contributions and inputs to this effort are based on our reports to the Senate Armed Services Committee on using best commercial practices to improve weapons program outcomes.

    The Department's draft rewrite embodies two critical features documented in our work to date. The first, the technology development must be separated from product development. In the DOD terms it would be before entering EMD we must have a match between proven technologies and requirements. And, secondly, metrics are needed to accurately measure technology and they must be used. In the 5000 series rewrite they are adopting the measurement system that we use in our JSF assessment which would be referred to as technology readiness levels.

    The commitment to this knowledge base versus the current schedule and funding driven process is reflected in the testimony of the Deputy and the Secretary of Defense for acquisition reform this morning before the Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Management and IT. And I quote, ''In the new systems acquisition environment key acquisition and long-term funding commitments will not be made until technology is mature.'' We at GAO are extremely encouraged by the commitment of the DOD acquisition leaders to improving weapons acquisition outcomes through the use of knowledge based commercial business practices.

    At the same time, however, we are concerned that the written directives and oral commitments will have little impact if not reflected in key decisions. In that sense, the key acquisition decision of entering engineering manufacturing development on the Joint Strike Fighter stands out as the flagship of weapons acquisition reform. By anything less than the standards and the directives will send a clear message that while the instructions and rhetoric are changing, it is business as usual.
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    Now let me return to the details of our JSF report. The Joint Strike Fighter acquisition strategy is designed to lower technical risk through aircraft flight demonstration and advanced technology development prior to awarding the engineering, manufacturing and development contract. During the current concept demonstration phase, DOD requires each contractor to design and build two aircraft, one aircraft with conventional take off and landing, and one for short take off and vertical landing. Each contractor will also be required to submit a preferred weapons systems concept which outlines its final design concept to meet the goals specified in the final requirements document.

    The preferred weapons system concept will include results from the flight and ground demonstrations and will ultimately be used to award the engineering and manufacturing development contract. We are encouraged by the design of the strategy and its focus on risk reduction by maturing critical technologies before entering engineering, manufacturing, development. Once in a development environment external pressures to keep the program moving become dominant such as preserving costs and schedule estimates to secure budget approval.

    For example, DOD policies require that a program be funded in the current year and that funds be made available over the six years in the DOD planning cycle. If a program manager decided that an additional year was needed to reach a desired level of technical maturity the planned start of engineering development could be delayed. This delay could jeopardize funding for the development phase, thus risking the funding support for the entire program. Consequently, the program may be more likely to accept the risk of moving forward rather than risk losing the program.

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    That decision would raise cost and benefit issues because cost increases and performance compromises would likely occur. Contrary to the principal objective is acquisition strategy. The Joint Strike Fighter program will not enter engineering, manufacturing and development phase with low technical risk. In addition, when the competing contractors experience design problems and cost overruns DOD will restructure the program in a manner that is moving away from best commercial practices toward traditional practices that have caused problems on other programs.

    We found that many critical technologies will be demonstrated only in laboratory or ground testing environments and therefore will have low levels of technical maturity when the engineering and manufacturing development contract is scheduled to be awarded. To determine the maturity of Joint Strike Fighter technologies, we requested the program office to identify the technology areas they considered critical to meeting Joint Strike Fighter costs and/or requirement subjectives.

    We also requested the program office and the two competing contractors to assign maturity levels for critical technologies using the tool referred to as technology readiness levels or TRLs. Using this tool technology maturity levels are measured on a scale of one to nine. Without going into the details of each level, let me note that a level 4 equates to a laboratory demonstration of a technology that is not in its usable form. For example, in advanced radio technology it could be demonstrated with components that take up a table top. A level 7 is a demonstration of a technology that approximates its final form and occurs in an environment outside the laboratory. That same radio at level 7 would be installed and demonstrated in an aircraft either similar to the Joint Strike Fighter, for example, an F–16.

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    The lower the level of maturity when a technology is included in the development program, the higher the risk that it will cause problems. According to the people in DOD that use the TRLs in rating the maturity levels of technologies level 7 enables a technology to be included in the development program with acceptable risk. The TRLs were pioneered by NASA and adapted by the Air Force research laboratory to determine the readiness of technologies to be incorporated into a weapon or other type of system. The joint advance strike technology program from which the JSF program evolved made extensive use of TRLs to assess early maturity levels for many of the current JSF technologies.

    The program also identified TRL 7 as the acceptable readiness level for low risk transition into the engineering and manufacturing development phase. We used TRLs in our prior work when at the request of the Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support, we assessed the impact of technology maturity on product outcomes. During that work we reviewed commercial and DOD experiences in incorporating 23 different technologies into new product and weapon system designs.

    Table one on page 10 in my formal statement shows that the cost and schedule problems arose when programs started when technologies were at low readiness levels and it conversely shows that programs met objectives when the technologies were at high levels. As you can see in the table, the Comanche, which started with low TRLs, has had cost growth and schedule delays of 101% and 120%, respectively. And similarly, the brilliant Anti-Armor Submunition has had cost increases of 88% and schedule slip of 62%.

    Unlike these programs, other DOD programs have been more attentive to matching customer requirements with technological capabilities. For example, the Joint Direct Attack Munition program, the JDAM, used modified variance of proven product lines for its guidance component and global positioning system. It also used mature existing components from other proven manufacturing process for its own system for controlling tail fin movements. The designs for the battery and the tail housing both used mature technology and were built using mostly existing tooling and processes.
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    The Deputy and the Secretary of Defense for acquisition reform attested to the success of JDAM during a hearing today before the Government Reform Committee noting that the JDAM performed flawlessly in Kosovo and was purchased at less than half of its expected unit cost. Mr. Chairman, I submit to you that the reason that that type of outcome occurs is because we had a very good batch of technologies, the mature technologies, at the start of that program and we were able to focus on manufacturing development.

    Mr. HUNTER. Sure, but I would say, Mr. Rodrigues, and I don't want to interrupt your statement, the Administration uses JDAM on almost every example of efficiency of procurement and somehow they have been unable to transfer that to other more complex systems. JDAM is a dumb bomb with a strap-on kit on it, right?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Yes.

    Mr. HUNTER. It is not real complex.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Well, Mr. Chairman, just last week we testified before Mr. Kasich's Committee and we used as an example what you referred to as a war wagon, which should be a relatively simple item to build, a trailer, and you know the story on that, 6,700. He had to stop production. We are having to redo the things. It is not—not everything is simple but the key is whatever level of—whatever it is you are attempting to do the match or the knowledge of the capability of that technology, the maturity of that technology, the match has to occur. If it doesn't occur problems will occur as we try to do technology development in a product development cycle which is what EMD is.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Sure. I have no quarrel with your general philosophy that you want to have something that is reliable before you sink massive costs in production. I think everybody agrees with that. I think the question we are going to have here today is going to be—hopefully General Howe will have a comment on this, is whether or not we have got enough reliability to move in this next phase and whether these TRLs are well structured and whether well placed and a valid reflection on whether or not we have high risk and where the TRLs are, how far we have come in these technologies and whether in some cases laboratory validation is good enough or whether it is not.

    So I agree with your general philosophy. I think everybody does. But I just want to see DOD transfer the JDAM nirvana that they achieved to these other systems and I haven't seen it so far. We do this year after year and every time we come around it trots out JDAM and I am waiting for them to come up with something else.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. But once again it is not the complexity, it is the match that occurred. That is what has to happen and it is not for production. It is for engineering, manufacturing development.

    Mr. HUNTER. I agree.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Otherwise we end up in manufacturing development focusing on the E rather than on the M and that is totally contrary to what is done in commercial best practices. And if you want to move this to a practice where we can assure outcomes at cost schedule and performance and within limited time periods—development schedules of 11 years, 12 years, we look at F–22 we entered EMD in 1991. We will see the end of that hopefully 2003, 2004. That is just such a long period of time, the kinds of things that can occur and the problems that can occur both from a management standpoint and from a technical standpoint are just unacceptable in terms of what they do to a program, in terms of its cost, its schedule, and ultimately in terms of its performance.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Yes.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. But let me—

    Mr. HUNTER. Sure, go ahead and summarize. Incidentally, your total statement, Mr. Rodrigues, is in the record.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Let me get to the readiness levels because I think that is where your interest is. On the Joint Strike Fighter in conjunction with the program office and the competing contractors, we determined the readiness levels of critical technologies. To my left here the table shows the technology readiness levels of eight critical technology areas identified by the Joint Strike Fighter program office. What we have is three different scoring points. The dark blue portion is what the technologies were at the point that the current contract was awarded back in 1996. The yellow portion reflects the amount of progress that has been made through the point in time that the scoring was done in December of 1999. And the red indicates the progress that they project to make in obtaining in the various technology levels through the start of manufacturing development schedule for April of 01.

    As you can see by the blue portion of the bars when the Joint Strike Fighter program was started most of the critical technologies were well below the TRL 6, which is the level considered acceptable risk to begin a program by the Air Force research lab and that is indicated by the first green triangle on the top there. In terms of engineering, manufacturing, development none of the critical technology areas are expected to be at readiness level 7 which the Air Force research lab considers acceptable for entering into low risk engineering, manufacturing, development and you can see that by comparing the total bar to the green diamond on the right.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Now you are saying that to—we look at what is that, nine technologies or—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. There are eight.

    Mr. HUNTER. Eight technologies.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Now those aren't technologies—

    Mr. HUNTER. And the blue line represents in fact where they are—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Where they were when the program went into the concept demonstration phase, when the program was launched.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. The emerald diamonds, that reflects where they should be before you go into EMD.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. The first diamond on the left reflects where they should be at program launch.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. The diamond to the right reflects where they should be to get the EMD so you see there is we started—even when we started, we started at a significant disadvantage.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. So you are saying that they are far short of the EMD threshold?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. The projection of where they will be is far short. Where they are today or where they were in December, 1999, which was the end of December, is where the yellow line would end so the red is where they hope to be in April of 2001.

    Mr. HUNTER. Oh, I see. Okay. So if we take where they probably will be, if we put some reliability on their projections then it is basically where the end of the line is which in some cases is like the bottom technology is almost there, right?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. No.

    Mr. HUNTER. Will almost be there.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. It is where you would want to have it at program launch. To be there you have to be at 7. The one thing about these when you step from a technology to technology it is not a linear progression. In other words, it isn't the same amount of time to go from three to four, four to five. If you actually looked at it to be at technology levels 1, 2 and 3 there are basic studies, paper kinds of things.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. At four and five you are dealing with laboratory, you know, things spread over a big lab table in a lab kind of environment. Basically just laboratory hardware in a laboratory environment. When you move to six that becomes more difficult because now you are starting to approximate form, fit and function. It is much more difficult to take a big thing out of a lab, shrink it down, get into form, fit and function and get that into either a laboratory setting. If you move that out and put it on a platform that allows it to fly in the environment that it is in then you are at a seven. When you get out to eight that is when you actually have it on a Joint Strike Fighter.
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    Mr. HUNTER. I will tell you what. Why don't you summarize the rest of your—and I am not trying to rush you but I know we are going to be making our last votes here at some point, we are going to be going out probably for a series of votes but why don't you summarize the rest of your testimony, Mr. Rodrigues, and we really appreciate it. And I want to let General Howe go after the proposition you have just laid out and that you think these technologies aren't mature enough to move to this next phase. It is kind of the heart of what we are doing and I am anxious to hear what the other side has to say on this one. Okay.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Let me just before I close, let me just say should any of these technologies be delayed or worse still not available for incorporation into the design the impact on the program could be dramatic. One of the above critical technology areas, one of the items if it needed to be replaced with the plan backup DOD could expect an increase of several billion dollars in production and operation support costs. Backup technology would also significantly increase aircraft weight, which could negatively impact aircraft performance, and that technology right now is at a level 5 which means that it is lab hardware in a lab environment.

    In conclusion, Mr. Chairman, the key objective of the program entering EMD with low technical risk we don't believe will be achieved based on the current schedule. The program will move forward without having reduced to an acceptable level the technical risk of technologies that the program office has identified as critical to meeting the program's cost and performance objectives. This isn't consistent with best commercial practices nor with DOD's original plan for developing the Joint Strike Fighter.

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    Instead, it is consistent with our traditional approach of concurrently developing technologies and products that has often raised cost benefit issues as a result of cost increases, schedule delays and compromise performance as problems arose in completing technology development during the engineering, manufacturing, development phase. What we are recommending, our bottom line is that the Joint Strike Fighter program is at an early development stage and therefore DOD still has the opportunity to both demonstrate its commitment to acquisition reform and chart a course to avoid the problems that have often befallen weapons programs.

    Accordingly, in our draft report we recommend that the Secretary of Defense direct the JSF program office to adjust the currently planned March 2001 engineering and manufacturing development decision date without the penalty of withdrawal of funding support to allow adequate time to mature critical technologies to acceptable maturity levels before awarding an engineering, manufacturing, development contract. Mr. Chairman, that concludes my statement. I would be happy to respond to any questions you or the Members may have.

    [The prepared statement of Mr. Rodrigues can be found in the Appendix.]

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. And just to get this straight, you are recommending any particular time of delay?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. You can deal with this in a number of ways. No, I don't. You would have to assess how much time, what would it take to move those technology levels up to the level of seven for all the critical technologies that we have a very high assurance that an EMD—we can actually focus on EMD and bring these things together and focus on their production rather than risk the chance of the hoped for technology advances not coming along and end up with design problems and slippage in testing, the kinds of things you see.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Now the platforms, Mr. Rodrigues, are actually going to be flying when, the test platforms?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Test platforms?

    Mr. HUNTER. Aircraft, actually get them up. We are going to actually have aircraft—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. The demonstration aircraft don't have any of this on it.

    Mr. HUNTER. I understand they don't have many guts in them but you are going to have demonstration aircraft that do demonstrate some capability, right?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Yes, but they are not the final weapon system design. They are a demonstrator of certain—

    Mr. HUNTER. I understand. No, I understand all that but when are they going to be up, the test platforms?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. April, May time frame, I believe it is. April, May.

    Mr. HUNTER. Around April or May?
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    Mr. RODRIGUES. Yes.

    Mr. HUNTER. Now if these technologies here were robust at this point many of them would be demonstrated during these test flights, is that right?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. You would have to ask the General whether they would have built that into the program. It is not that—you don't just stick them in now at this point.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. I don't think so. It takes a lot of planning to go in and building—

    Mr. HUNTER. No, I understand but what I am saying—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. If they could have from the start, would they have? I assume they would have. I assume they would have loaded on any technologies that were mature enough if they could have to demonstrate them but I think the question is better directed to General Howe.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Well, I think you have laid the table fairly well here with respect to your position. And, General Howe, what do you think, are we too early to move this plane along?
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    Mr. RODRIGUES. Mr. Chairman, could I make one point?

    Mr. HUNTER. Oh, yes, sir. Go ahead.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. I did note something in what Secretary Delaney was saying when he talked about Joint Strike Fighter. Unfortunately, you were out of the room and I believe this is pretty close to quoting him, all the technologies for the Joint Strike Fighter will be demonstrated in either the JSF or another platform before engineering, manufacturing development. That is the definition of TRL seven. That is that definition and it is what we need to do in order to have great assurance that we will have a tremendously successful affordable program and affordability is key as the Secretary testified.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. So you are agreeing with their formula, you just don't agree with their execution of the formula?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. I am not sure about the execution of the formula. As we understand it, they are not using technology readiness levels for measuring maturity under this program. It was used when the program was—prior to it becoming a program as being strike technology but when it transferred from department to department those were set aside and the measurement systems that we are using now are not these.

    These take out a lot of the judgment, the engineering judgment, and give you some very—I will be glad to provide you with a listing. You can see that it is much more measurable and concrete in terms of what has been demonstrated so that you know where you are and it is easier to measure it.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Okay.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. It takes a lot of judgment that gets us into trouble out of the equation.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. And we will get into that in more detail as we go classified. General Howe, I put the question to you again. Are we too early to move ahead on this aircraft?


    General HOWE. No, sir, we are not, to answer your question. Mr. Chairman, Members of the Committee, my name is Mike Howe. I am the Director of the Joint Strike Fighter. I am absolutely pleased to be here this afternoon and talk to you about the Joint Strike Fighter and tell you the story and talk about what Mr. Rodrigues just said. I have already had my conversation with him. He knows where I sit and I am going to try and mitigate what he said in a way to say this has been a tremendous misunderstanding the way we grade TRL seven.

    However, in prefacing my remarks, I want to say that that last comment he just made, the last comment he just made was a definition of TRL seven, opened up the door for me to give a lot of rhetoric here. And I want to go right to page 18 of his draft report. I got so much junk up here I don't even know where it is. Here it is right here. Page 18 of his draft report in the summary of findings says the Air Force research lab considers technology readiness level seven is acceptable for low risk when entering the engineering, manufacturing and development stage.
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    This maturity level represents an advanced prototype demonstrating an operational environment. For example, flying JSF technologies in already existing aircraft. Already existing aircraft meaning F–16, F–18, flying test bed, whatever it may take. While the JSF program has seen improvement in many technology areas since the program started maturity levels are not approved enough to indicate a transition to the next phase.

    So I am taken to say that obviously these technologies have not been demonstrated on other aircraft. These technologies. Now I am going to take those first eight up there that have been put on there and have not been identified to you but I am going to identify them to you. And I am going to go back to the very crux of this whole program. When it was started in 1996, Dr. Kaminski, a very smart guy in this business, wanted to reduce about three things.

    One was the cost of doing business. Two was cycle time. Get it out there quicker, and at the same time being able to engage technology, technology, but develop technology but mature technology in this phase that we are talking about right here. And I comment from the Summary Assessment Matrix (SAM), which is the management plan that he laid out on November 15, 1996, when he said here, he said engineering, manufacturing and development, the principal program definition in risk reduction objective, that is the phase I am in right now to end in the spring of 01, is to demonstrate a low level of technical risk, those critical technologies, processes and system characteristics necessary to produce an affordable family of strike aircraft that meet all participants' needs.

    He goes on to say that the principal objective of this phase should demonstrate to a low level of technical risk for entering EMD those critical technologies, processes and system characteristics and to integrate them while in EMD. Now we are going to do this via a variety of methodologies. In this phase he said use cost as an independent variable (CAIV), cost and independent variable. What do we use that for? We use that to get the cost of buying this thing down, the Unit Recurring Fly Away Cost (URF). That is what Dr. Delaney was talking about, the $20 million to $38 million. We got that in the box pretty well. We have done a good job on that.
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    That is the definition of the airplane that the contractors are going to build, the Preferred Weapon System Concept (production aircraft) (PWSC), in other words. Then we have a couple other things and one was to build—each contractor would build a couple airplanes to demonstrate the technology. It is just as Mr. Rodrigues said, it is absolutely true, but you know what, due to affordability they said these are not Y airplanes. They are X airplanes. What do I mean by that? The F–22 was a Y airplane. That thing when it took off it looked like the real McCoy. This one doesn't do that.

    We are building X airplanes and only those things due to affordability initiatives are going to go on that platform due to affordability that can't go on anything else, F–16, F–18, flying test bed, even a lab. So as Dr. Delaney said, what we are going to demonstrate with these X airplanes is affordability through commonality kind of like when your kids got a little robot and it turns into a truck or something. We are going to build two airplanes and turn them into three, a family of airplanes, one size fits all, 80% common in the manufacturing/frame and the avionics and the motor are exactly the same. That is why you can build this airplane for $20 million.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay, General Howe, let me hold you up for one minute here. Now you have made I think a pretty effective counter here to Mr. Rodrigues and I want to make sure that we are all on the same sheet of music. Mr. Rodrigues has pointed out that these technologies are not going to be in the demonstrators, these demonstrator aircraft. What you are saying and referring to Secretary Delaney's statement that they will either be flown or they will be flown on alternate platforms is that you are testing a number of the technologies on other platforms, F–16s, for example.
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    General HOWE. Sir, we are testing all of them and I am going to get to that because some of these technologies are going to be on these X airplanes.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. What I want you to do, I want you to go ahead. And, Mr. Rodrigues, I want this to be your first issue that you address when we do point, counterpoint here is the General has said that a large number of these technologies are going to be tested on different platforms and I want you to be ready—don't respond now. I want to let the General finish his statement but I want you to tell us whether or not you have analyzed all the platforms that the technologies are being tested on. Go ahead, General Howe.

    General HOWE. So we take these X airplanes and what we had to do there was demonstrate, as Dr. Delaney said, STOVL handling characteristics, up and away for conventional take-off and land (C–TOL), which we are going to do. It is not necessary, but due to the fact that one airplane, an Air Force airplane that looks like a Marine airplane, we can get bang for the buck by flying that Air Force airplane up high and away and testing the STOVL and we have got two for one, in other words. That is the commonality piece. Tremendous technology.

    We demonstrated in the manufacture of these airplanes with one contractor tremendous manufacturing advances that will lower the ability to build an airplane for 24 months and to approximately nine months, getting rid of a tremendous cost curve there. The last thing that we said we were going to do in this program outside the Concept Demonstrator Aircraft (CDA) airplanes is a tech map. When we had Joint Advance Strike Technology Program (JAST) we had 500 technologies or so. When JAST turned into an airplane program, now a technology program, we whittled and reduced that thing down to 30 core enabling capabilities or technologies.
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    We are not developing them, we are maturing them. We took a look at those things and underneath those were subsets, many subsets. For instance, one is JIST, Joint Integrated Subsystem Technology, where you take all these moving parts and reduce them down to a smaller moving part where generators turn into this and that and so forth, reduce the moving parts by 30 to 40%, 30 to 40%. What I want to point out here is that that is one of those technologies up there and we grade ourselves very low, and I am going to tell you why.

    But first I am going to tell you that the outfit that handles this thing lock, stock and barrel is the Air Force lab. They use TRLs for a yardstick of measurement. We do not do it in the program, neither does the contractors. Wright Pat gave themselves a nine. Do you know what a nine says? Nine says that you have to have operational testing done on it. It is not going to happen. It didn't happen. Developmental testing, why did they say that? Because they consider this and the 32 subsets of that integrated technology, that technology, absolutely ready to go. We gave ourselves a six. Why? Because we consider the most difficult part of this, the most challenging part of all these technologies up here I am going to go through in a second, is the integration of these things into a system of systems airplane that represents a 21st century technology that meets the warfighter's needs. It is the integration is the challenge, not the technology.

    But the integration challenge I am not supposed to do in this phase. That is EMD. And what Mr. Rodrigues said is absolutely correct, there is a big E in this program but to be handled so we go into EMD with a low risk meaning the technology is mature, whether it be stove pipe or whatever. It has to be demonstrated. Demonstrated. Now let me go back to TRLs and here is where there was a tremendous misunderstanding. GAO came to me in 1998 and said, hi, I am here, we want to do this and that and so forth. The House Oversight and Reform Committee said in 1999 go and take a look at the tech map programs. They came and talked to us. They went and talked to the contractor.
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    Here is where I think there was a snafu and we got cross threaded. We don't use TRLs. We don't like them. Why? We think they are porous. We don't think they—because they do not evaluate the integration of these technologies. That is where we are going. That is the difficulty. So we do not use them because it only looks at one side but it is okay if somebody else does, that is fine. I don't think there is a right yardstick of measurement to evaluate totally a technology that has to go in an integrated fashion on these platforms.

    Legacy platforms are all stove pipe federated. The new ones hinged together with software, millions of lines of code. They are integrated. You have to look at that and you do that in EMD. We went to the contractor. They don't use them either. But the Rules of Engagement (ROE) that was understood in that time frame was to evaluate these technologies with the idea that they had to fly on a CD–8 prototype like airplane. We aren't doing that. It wasn't part of the charter. And it was brought out, and I quote, well, we are going to do this JIST I just told you, Joint Integrated System Technology, we are going to fly that in an F–16 lock, stock and barrel. In fact, that is the only way this airplane is going to fly. And he said that is interesting but not relevant.

    Affordability is the name of the game and the only way we can do that in X airplanes is do it by other means, and I am going to go through those. So the point is we got cross threaded here where we evaluated ourselves, and he is right, we evaluated ourselves using technology and the integration is where we sit as to the challenge of that technology and we gave ourselves some low scores. However, going back, going back to summary of findings where he said we could use these others after we add the review, Mr. Rodrigues, on the draft report in February, we rescored ourselves.
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    And this is going to be my final run-through here. We went and took a look at those technologies, and I am just going to start with STOVL–IFPC, Integrated Flight Propulsion System. Obviously, to make this thing fly you got to use software—

    Mr. HUNTER. General, we are going to need to go to classified session for that if we are going to get into detail because of proprietary data. But let me ask you a question and so just hold that right there. We will clear the room and we will do classified session. Let me just ask you on a general principle here. Mr. Rodrigues laid out that there are these TRLs, basically how mature the technology is before you move ahead. He laid out the chart here that shows that according to if you do need a seven before you move into EMD none of these make it.

    Your counter was, and you gave one example here, was you had one technology that you were given a nine on by Wright Patterson but by your yardstick doing it very conservatively you only gave it a six, which would fail it under Mr. Rodrigues' test but if you accepted the nine that Wright Patterson gave you, you would be okay. So I guess the question I want to ask in open session before we go to classified session is are you saying that because of your very conservative grading of your own technology readiness levels (TRLs) that in fact these technologies that you have listed here if they were graded in the—if they were enumerated in the traditional way would be in your estimation above seven?

    General HOWE. Sir, if we graded all those technologies I am prepared to do that. According to the summary of findings that is on page 18 that they wrote up they are all six's and seven's and ready to go on DMD. They will be at the time we go on EMD.
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    Mr. HUNTER. So they would be above seven?

    General HOWE. six's and seven's. You can't get above a seven. You cannot get there because it requires developmental test and we are not—

    Mr. HUNTER. And the other thing that you are saying is that you think the real test of a technology is not its isolated performance but its integrated performance and you have to do EMD to get the integrated test.

    General HOWE. Sir, there are a lot of things that work great in isolation but if you can't integrate them and they don't work, you got a problem.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Okay, I understand. Why don't we go into classified session—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Mr. Chairman, if I could.

    Mr. HUNTER. Sure, go ahead, Mr. Rodrigues.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. There is nothing classified about the discussion of the use of TRLs and how they apply and who is going to use them and what they mean.

    Mr. HUNTER. Well, all I know is as General Howe was starting to elucidate and expand his statement my staff said for proprietary reasons you got to go classified with that piece of information.
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    Mr. RODRIGUES. We are going to talk about the individual technologies absolutely but we are already on the public record with regard to TRLs. I would hate to leave it the way it has been at this point.

    Mr. HUNTER. Go ahead. You got General Howe's rebuttal on your statement. Go ahead and we will give you a chance to redirect here. What do you want?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. First of all, when you characterized what I said about this, you indicated that I had said it was to be flown on the JSF demonstrator. That isn't what I said. If they were able to put some of this on the current demonstrators and demonstrator flight environment, fine, that is okay, but it doesn't have to be. And in fact if we go into classified session and get into some of the nitty gritty details you will see some of these are being flown on F–16 surrogates.

    The whole idea, and let me give you the definitions. Where TRL is six you have to have a prototype. It should be close to form, fit and function. This is a description of the hardware. Probably includes the integration of many new components and realistically supporting elements subsistence if needed to demonstrate full functionality of the subsystem. Now, first of all, our only rating of this technology was not by the program office. This was independently rated by the contractor and the ratings by the contractor were lower in the particular instance that the General already put on the table.

    Now it takes a lot of work to work through these because you have to have discussions to figure out what do you have, what do you plan on being at, what are you doing. That then has to be done in a high fidelity lab demonstration or limited restricting flight demonstration for a relative environment. That is for six. For seven the prototype should be form, fit, function integrated with other key supporting elements and subsystems that demonstrate full functionality of the subsystem. And you can do that on a flight demonstrator but now this thing has to be form, fit, function. You have to be down to what you need.
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    You can't have something that weighs 300 pounds, has a processing capability one-third of what you need and say, well, we are going to get there. No, that isn't it, and it has to be somewhere out there in the real world. Not the whole thing but that you have demonstrated it. That is the criteria. These are understandable and applicable.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Hold on for a second, Mr. Rodrigues. Okay, hold on for a second.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Validated and agreed to by the Department of Defense and incorporated—

    Mr. HUNTER. Mr. Rodrigues, I get your point. Now hold on for a second because I want to see, General Howe, do you agree with that general definition of these ARLs that Mr. Rodrigues gave you? I am trying to get a common sheet of music for us to be singing off here. Now do you agree with that?

    General HOWE. Sir, that is the problem. The interpretation of the TRL is vast. The outfit that uses them, the Wright Pat labs, they interpret it completely different than—Mr. Rodrigues has a lot of experience with it and they use that when it is appropriate. That is why we do not use it in our program office and neither do the contractors.

    They have a very rigorous risk mitigation process and methodology. They do not use TRLs. Why? It does not look at the full spectrum of risks that one has to take into account when looking at these technologies. That is why we do not use it. As far as the contractors—
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    Mr. HUNTER. Well, let me ask you a question though. You used something because you used—you assigned a number to these technology development programs.

    General HOWE. Yes, sir. What we did is we used the TRLs to accommodate Mr. Rodrigues' look see at our program. We used the TRL to the best of our ability to define but I was saying there was a misunderstanding because we evaluated, we evaluated our technologies to an integrated technologies within the program. We did not evaluate them against individual technologies. We were led to believe via briefings with GAO that that is what you are supposed to do and so did the contractor. That is why they were low.

    And subsequent to our reading of the draft report on page 18, we said, well, let's go back and take a look at these. I am prepared to run down each one of those technologies and show you they are being demonstrated to the fullest extent either on a concept demonstration (CD) airplane or fully within another platform like the F–16 which flies solely by this technology. It is a demonstration of its capability.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. Let me ask you one other question here then before we go to our classified session. Obviously, what we are concerned about is the substance of the issue. Not a number but whether or not these technologies are mature enough to move into the next phase. Mr. Rodrigues, have you looked of the technologies you have got listed there, have you looked at the technologies themselves and their level of maturity?

    Mr. RODRIGUES. Physically inspected them? No. Because they are not at the levels that—we are talking about where they are projecting to be in the future. This is not a rating of it today.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Then my question to—

    Mr. RODRIGUES. There is nothing to look at—

    Mr. HUNTER. I am talking about in an analytical way. In other words, somebody has to analyze them to give them any number so my question to you is have you looked at the projected status of the technologies not as a function of the number, not whether they are 7s, 8s, 9s or whatever, but as to where the technology is today and the reasonable prospects for where it is going to be at the time when this next phase, EMD phase, would be commenced.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. We can discuss that because we will have to get into the specifics.

    Mr. HUNTER. Okay. We are going to get into specifics. I think going out of the open session, I think it is clear that we have a difference of opinion as to the maturity of the technologies. And for this Committee, that is the key and I think you gentlemen would agree too.

    Mr. RODRIGUES. I would but I have to make one point here. On a number of these, and you will see it, and I can kind of do it in the abstract, but when we talk about the difference between a TRL 5 and a TRL 6 there can be—to say there is a misunderstanding, we are talking about bread boards, lab hardware in a laboratory versus a prototype of form, fit and function. To have a mistake in the ranking from a 6 to a 5 is very difficult to understand, very difficult.
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    Mr. HUNTER. Well, I will tell you what. We will get into that. We have got a vote on. I am going to vote as other members of the Committee are and we will be back in let's say we will fire up in classified session in 10 minutes, 10 to 15. Thank you, gentlemen, for excellent opening statements.

    [Whereupon, at 3:40 p.m., the Subcommittee recessed, to reconvene the same day.]


March 16, 2000
[The Appendix is pending.]