May 1, 2003

The Air Force: Science, Technology, and Transformation

A unique connectivity exists in the Air Force between science, technology, and transformation. From the defining moment of powered flight in 1903 to the creation of the Air Force as a separate service in 1947 to the present, these three elements have been continuously linked and undoubtedly will remain so.

March 1, 2003

NATO Defense Science and Technology

The accord establishing the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in 1949 provided the framework for the greatest international mechanism ever in defense science and technology. From its earliest days, NATO involvement in science and technology has sought to build cooperation and promote security and stability. Today, the central element of the NATO defense science and technology program is the Research and Technology Organization (RTO), which provides the best basis for collaboration among the most technologically advanced countries in the world. Through this body, alliance nations plan and execute activities that cover the full spectrum of technologies vital to current and future security.

March 1, 2003

Biology and the Battlefield

The military and the life sciences have been intertwined throughout history. Biology has often been a source of offensive weapons, ranging from the hurling of plague victims over the walls of Kaffa (which probably started the 14th-century Black Death) to the anthrax attacks of fall 2001.

Feb. 1, 2003

Decision Dominance: Exploiting Transformational Asymmetries

This paper introduces a new operational concept—decision dominance— to help guide the strategic employment of U.S. forces in wartime. This concept is not a replacement for existing paradigms. If added to the current list, however, it may better illuminate how American forces can operate effectively in ways that will achieve their political-military goals more decisively in future wars.

Jan. 1, 2003

The Silence of the Labs

Something important to the Nation’s defense has vanished, yet the top Pentagon brass never noticed. Not the stuff of headlines, this loss would not arouse public concern, especially during these times of terrorist massacres, anthrax attacks, corporate scandal, and war. Nevertheless, like the miner’s canary that is first to die with the rush of an ill wind, this loss is a warning.

Dec. 1, 2002

The Emergence of Mini UAVs for Military Applications

The successes of the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in Afghanistan most likely will accelerate the introduction of UAVs into the military force structure. What emerged in Afghanistan was a tiered observation-detection-targeting system consisting of spacecraft, the Global Hawk UAV, the Predator UAV, and often a spotter on the ground. However, in complex terrain, as in Afghanistan, and in urban situations, airborne assets may be needed much closer to the ground. A low-altitude tier of UAVs— mini UAVs—could serve such a purpose.

Oct. 1, 2002

High-Energy Lasers: Technical, Operational, and Policy Issues

This paper considers the unique and promising attributes of high energy laser (HEL) weapon systems and examines the technical challenges, at both the system and component level, that need to be overcome for an HEL to be competitive against alternative weapon systems. The policy and operational challenges are also highlighted.

Oct. 1, 2002

Effects-Based Operations: Building the Analytic Tools

This paper describes effects-based operations (EBO), an effort to leverage American military and technical might with enormous advantages in computation, information, and analysis in order to achieve political-military outcomes in a new strategic environment.

Oct. 1, 2002

From Petro to Agro: Seeds of a New Economy

This paper describes the increasing importance of agriculture to defense, as a part of the Nation’s industrial base, offering the most economical way to produce large quantities of biological materials. It explains why agricultural fields will assume the same significance as oil fields.

Aug. 1, 2002

Transforming America’s Military

Transforming America’s Military, edited by Hans Binnendijk. This book explores the issues that face the U.S. military in a time of transformation: new missions, new technologies, efforts by each of the Services, on the part of our allies, as well as the challenges we face after September 11.