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DoD Systems Engineering - What's New

What's New

  • DoD Participates in the 17th Annual NDIA Systems Engineering Conference (Posted November 2014)

    The Office of DASD(SE) was a major contributor at the 17th Annual National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) Systems Engineering Conference, Springfield, VA, attended by more than 300 systems engineers and program managers from industry, Government, and academia. Dr. William LaPlante delivered the keynote address on Air Force initiatives to improve acquisition and support for the Warfighter. DASD(SE) chaired the Chief Systems Engineers Panel during the opening plenary with representatives from the Army, Marine Corps, Air Force, Department of Homeland Security, FAA, and NOAA. DASD(SE) also provided an overview of Better Buying Power 3.0. Director, Major Program Support chaired the Program Managers Panel with Army, Navy, Air Force, and NSA PMs, discussing systems engineering in the management of technical risk and challenges. PD,DASD(SE) presented the 2014 NDIA Ferguson Award for Systems Engineering Excellence to Mr. David Castellano, U.S. Army ARDEC. The DASD(SE) team delivered briefs describing the team’s latest efforts, including systems engineering policy and guidance, DoD engineering workforce development, modular open system architecture, DoD microelectronics strategy, the Joint Federated Assurance Center, digital system model, development planning, reliability and maintainability, program protection, software assurance, and system of systems. The Systems Engineering Research Center (SERC) PM led a panel of industry and Government experts on transitioning systems engineering research into practice. For more information, see the ODASD(SE) NDIA conference briefs.

  • DoD Releases Third Installment of Better Buying Power (Posted October 2014)

    Better Buying Power (BBP) is a Department of Defense (DoD) initiative to improve affordability and productivity in the acquisition of products and services for our Warfighters. An interim draft of the third installment of the Better Buying Power effort, BBP 3.0, was released to the broader defense community for review and comment on September 19, 2014.

    Dr. Ashton Carter, then Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, introduced the original BBP 1.0 in 2010, kicking off a series of initiatives that challenged the Department’s acquisition workforce and the larger defense industrial community to focus on controlling costs and improving efficiency. The current USD(AT&L), Mr. Frank Kendall, extended this focus with the release of BBP 2.0 in 2012. BBP 2.0 included updates to BBP 1.0 initiatives and introduced a new emphasis on the acquisition workforce - highlighting the importance of professionalism and critical thinking. The evolution from BBP 1.0 to BBP 2.0 reflected the Department’s intention that BBP would be continuously improved as initiatives were put into practice and we learned from this experience.

    With the release of BBP 3.0, Under Secretary Kendall is proposing a series of new initiatives that reinvigorate our efforts to promote innovation and technical excellence. BBP 3.0 reflects the recognition that, in the 21st century security environment, the Department’s approach to fielding capabilities must become more agile, resilient and technically responsive to a rapidly changing global environment, while acknowledging the fiscal pressure on our acquisition programs.

    The draft BBP 3.0 includes eight focus areas: (1) achieving affordable programs; (2) achieving dominant capabilities while controlling lifecycle costs; (3) incentivizing productivity in industry and government; (4) incentivizing innovation in industry and government; (5) eliminating unproductive processes and bureaucracy; (6) promoting effective competition; (7) improving tradecraft in acquisition of services; and (8) improving the professionalism of the total acquisition workforce. Taken collectively, these initiatives seek to strengthen a culture of cost consciousness, professionalism, and technical excellence, with an underlying focus on the engineering and technical products critical to U.S. military dominance.

    To achieve these ends, BBP 3.0 proposes new initiatives to address emerging threats and institutionalize long-range R&D planning. BBP 3.0 also seeks to strengthen DoD’s organic engineering capabilities, improve our use of contracted engineering technical services, better leverage small business innovative research, increase our engagement with innovative commercial suppliers and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of DoD’s laboratories. Initiatives emphasizing planning for technology insertion and emphasizing the use of modular open systems architecture are described, as well as the importance of engaging industry early in concept development. There is also recognition of the importance of actively managing technical risk in development and the need to ensure that leaders of R&D efforts have the skills required to manage complex technology efforts. Finally, BBP 3.0 makes an important connection between DoD technological superiority and our support for National Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics education.

    At the release event for BBP 3.0, Mr. Kendall encouraged the defense community to provide feedback. You can read more about BBP 3.0 at and join the discussion on BBP 3.0 by submitting comments to

  • DASD(SE) Welcomes New Director of Mission Assurance (Posted September 2014)

    Mr. Robert A. Gold, SES, brings a wealth of experience in defense systems engineering, cybersecurity, and acquisition. As Director of Mission Assurance, he now leads the development of DoD policy on systems engineering, development planning, specialty engineering, and defense standardization, bringing renewed emphasis to focus areas including reliability and value engineering. Mr. Gold oversees the workforce development areas of Engineering (ENG) and Production, Quality, and Manufacturing (PQM), championing efforts to continue and enhance professionalism in the defense acquisition workforce. Mr. Gold has more than 30 years of experience with the Department, including serving as the Director for Information Systems and Cyber Security within OASD(R&E). He has provided acquisition and technical expertise for major defense programs, including the Air Force F 22, F-35, Missile Defense Agency Initial Defensive Operations, and the Navy STANDARD Missile. The DoD press release and Mr. Gold’s biography provide additional information.

  • DASD(SE) Releases 2014 System of Systems Webinar Schedule (Posted April 2014)

    The Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering (DASD(SE)) released the schedule for the 2014 System of Systems Engineering Collaborators Information Exchange (SoSECIE) webinars, co-sponsored with the National Defense Industrial Association Systems Engineering Division. These webinars bring together those in the DoD community (military, government, industry, and academia) interested in advancing systems engineering for systems of systems.

  • DoD Recognizes 2013 Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages (DMSMS) Achievements (Posted January 2014)

    The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering (DASD(SE)) presented the 2013 Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages (DMSMS) Award to three individuals and five teams at the 2013 DMSMS Conference. The award recognizes individuals and teams from the government who are most responsible for significant achievements in proactive DMSMS management and implementation. The The awards are based on achievements in the following areas:

    • Exceptional DMSMS management
    • Significantly improved and quantifiable readiness levels
    • Substantial cost avoidance
    • Exceptional warfighter support related to or realized through mitigation of a DMSMS issue
    • Creation or implementation of a DMSMS best practice that increases supportability and availability of systems to the warfighter

    Many military systems and equipment are part of the DoD inventory for extended periods of time, years and even decades. However as new technology becomes available, manufacturers may no longer support the equipment or component making it more difficult to repair. Mechanical parts may be harder to purchase because as the demand for these parts decreases, there is less economic incentive to continue to manufacture them. In other instances, the materials required to manufacture a piece of equipment may not be available. DMSMS experts focus on identifying and mitigating the loss or impending loss of manufacturers of items or suppliers of items or raw materials that could put the future operation of a DoD system or subsystem at risk.

    The evaluation committee was comprised of the DMSMS Military Service leads and the co-chairs of the DoD DMSMS Working Group. This year, the following individuals and groups are recognized for demonstrating achievement in addressing DMSMS.


    Mr. Rex Coombs guided the Fleet Support Team, Air Combat Electronics Program Office (PMA-209), Naval Air Systems Command, in the establishment of an extensive, proactive DMSMS program to manage his organization’s broad product base with a modest staff and limited funding. He also developed a highly successful hardware reuse program that eliminates expensive product redesigns due to obsolescence, improves Navy fleet readiness, and reduces repair costs.
    Ms. Robin Brown, a logistics management analyst in the DMSMS Branch, Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, assisted Naval Air Systems Command program offices to establish DMSMS management programs. She also was instrumental in creating the Command's DMSMS Working Group to foster collaboration, share lessons learned, and establish best practices. Her contributions have helped increase supportability and availability of systems to the warfighter.>
    Mr. Thomas Beckstedt, the principal assistant to the manager of the Generalized Emulation of Microcircuits Program and the lead equipment specialist, applies his expertise in microcircuit fabrication and associated logistics to solve complex microcircuit issues, in collaboration with industry and government engineers and logisticians. When microcircuit emulation is required, he follows the project from its start until the microcircuit is delivered to the requiring activity.
    The Obsolescence Management Team for the Armed Scout Helicopter Project Management Office, U.S. Army Redstone Arsenal, established a proactive obsolescence program covering both the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopter and its replacement, the OH-58F. The team overcame the challenges of supporting two configurations of an aircraft in different phases of the life cycle to identify DMS/obsolescence risk early and develop cost-effective solutions before the program is negatively affected.
    The Program Executive Office Integrated Warfare Systems 2.0 (PEO IWS 2.0) and the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Crane Division, collaborated to develop a consistent, cost-effective enterprise approach to DMSMS management for all PEO IWS 2.0 sensor systems. Through collaboration with project managers, in-service engineering agents, and DMSMS experts, the team implemented best practices, standardized processes and methods, and established clear roles and responsibilities for DMSMS working groups.
    The DMSMS Management Team, Product Manager, Radar Systems, Marine Corps Systems Command, addressed numerous DMSMS and life-cycle issues with obsolete major components of radar systems used to acquire and sustain command, control, and communications and to counter mortar, artillery, and rocket fire. The team resolved immediate and emerging DMSMS issues, increased reliability and readiness, and ensured the continued availability of these critical assets.
    The Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) DMSMS Program Team—within the Air Dominance Division, Armament Directorate, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Materiel Command—adopted a number of aggressive, proactive strategies to mitigate DMSMS issues and avoid serious risks to production of the AMRAAM. The team’s proactive approach has resulted in significant cost avoidance and a healthy and sustainable production capability.
    The Air Force DMSMS Program Office, 448 Supply Chain Management Wing, Air Force Sustainment Center, established a single enterprise-wide DMSMS program that has demonstrated an exceptional standard of obsolescence prevention and resolution while improving the program’s cost-effectiveness and efficiency. The team established a single DMSMS predictive tool database and a consolidated Air Force-wide analysis and resolution contract, saving $3.3 million and standardizing DMSMS processes across the enterprise.
  • DASD(SE) Briefs Microelectronics (MicroE) Strategy (Posted January 2014)

    Raymond Shanahan briefed DoD's "Microelectronics (MicroE) Strategy," and participated in a panel at the January 15 NDIA Trusted Microelectronics meeting. Mr. Shanhan described the Department’s strategy for identifying critical microelectronic functions and components that warrant supply chain risk management. This strategy improves trust considerations for system security to include Application-Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs) and other types of integrated circuits such as Field Programmable Gate Arrays, Microprocessors, and Memories. The Government and industry panel session included a discussion regarding obstacles and solutions for addressing supply chain risks for microelectronics.

  • DoD Briefs Latest Initiatives at 16th Annual NDIA Systems Engineering Conference (Posted November 2013)

    The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering team provided wide-ranging updates to government, military and industry and academia in attendance at the 16th Annual National Defense Industrial Association (NDIA) Systems Engineering Conference. DASD(SE) chaired the Chief Systems Engineers Panel during the opening plenary with representatives from the Army, Marine Corps, Air Force, Department of Homeland Security, NASA, and NOAA. The SE government team delivered briefs on topics including systems engineering policy and guidance, development planning, risk, reliability, models and simulations, and program protection, and SE workforce. The 2013 NDIA Ferguson Award for Systems Engineering Excellence was presented to Dr. James Keeney, Air Force Research Laboratory.

  • DASD(SE) Team Contributes System Security Article to July 2013 INCOSE INSIGHT Magazine (Posted July 2013)

    Paul R. Popick and Melinda Reed contributed the article "Requirements Challenges in Addressing Malicious Supply Chain Threats." In today’s environment of cyber attacks and exploitation of system vulnerabilities, the systems engineer needs to be more aware of security during the system specification and design stage. The article discusses the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) state of practice for incorporating trusted system and network security requirements into the specifications for large, complex systems. The article describes the current environment, the trends that are influencing the need for system security engineering, and the types of system security requirements and analysis techniques DoD is using. INCOSE INSIGHT, July 2013 (16); 2: 23-27. Reprinted with permission of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE).

  • DoD Announces Winners of 2012 Value Engineering Achievement Award (Posted July 2013)

    The Department of Defense announced the winners of the Fiscal Year 2012 Department of Defense Value Engineering Achievement Award. Review the DoD press release and a complete listing of the recipients from across the Department.

  • DoD Releases Revised Systems Engineering Guidance for the DoD Acquisition Community (Posted May 2013)

    On May 8, 2013, the Department of Defense released a major update to the Defense Acquisition Guidebook (DAG) Chapter 4, Systems Engineering. The DAG Chapter 4 is the primary reference on the use of systems engineering throughout the system life cycle. With this release, the chapter has been restructured to provide Program Managers and Systems Engineers with life cycle phase and systems engineering technical review expectations, including a knowledge-based, technical-maturity table for key events. The chapter provides details on systems engineering technical and technical management processes and includes links to relevant policy, standards, and detailed guidance on key topics. The Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering developed the DAG Chapter 4 with contributors from 24 different organizations across the Department. The update reflects recent policy changes and Better Buying Power initiatives and emphasizes the role of systems engineering in providing balanced solutions (managing the system’s cost, schedule, performance, and risk) to deliver Warfighter capability needs. This brief provides an overview of the changes. The DAG Chapter 4 is available on the Defense Acquisition University Web site at

  • DoD Issues Counterfeit Prevention Policy (Posted May 2013)

    The Department of Defense released DoD Instruction 4140.67 DoD Counterfeit Prevention Policy on April 26, 2013. The instruction:

    1. "Establishes policy and assigns responsibilities necessary to prevent the introduction of counterfeit materiel at any level of the DoD supply chain, including special requirements prescribed by section 818 of Public Law 112-81 related to electronic parts;
    2. Provides direction for anti-counterfeit measures for DoD weapon and information systems acquisition and sustainment to prevent the introduction of counterfeit materiel; and
    3. Assigns responsibilities for prevention, detection, remediation, investigation, and restitution to defend the DoD against counterfeit materiel that poses a threat to personnel safety and mission assurance."
  • DASD(SE) Announces 2013 System of Systems Webinars (Posted April 2013)

    The Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Systems Engineering announced plans (DASD(SE)) for the 2013 System of Systems Engineering Collaborators Information Exchange (SoSECIE) webinars, co-sponsored with the National Defense Industrial Association Systems Engineering Division. These webinars are intended to bring together the DoD community (military, government, industry, academia) interested in advancing systems engineering for systems of systems.