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Release No: 015-97
January 14, 1997

Dual Use Applications Program Plans Announced

Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition and Technology Paul G. Kaminski today announced plans for the FY 1997 Dual Use Applications Program. The program includes two parts, the Commercial Operations and Support Savings Initiative ($100 million) and the Science and Technology Initiative ($85 million).

Commercial Operations and Support Savings Initiative (COSSI) will demonstrate an approach to be used to lower the operations and support costs of fielded military systems by inserting commercial technology. The Science and Technology Initiative will fully transition to the military services the dual use procedures pioneered by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

Reducing operations and support costs is a critical element in DoD's long-term strategy to increase funding for modernization. COSSI will support the engineering and testing needed to retrofit fielded military systems with commercial technologies in order to save future operations and support costs. The program requires that firms team with the appropriate military service customer to create kits, based on a commercial product or process, that will maintain the performance of a fielded system while reducing its operations and support costs. The government will share the costs of developing and testing these kits. If the development and testing is successful, the firms could then sell the kits and perhaps a maintenance contract to the government. The teams military service customer will oversee kit development and testing, and, assuming a successful development and available funds, would ultimately purchase the kits.

In the Science and Technology Initiative, the service acquisition executives will identify industry proposals that develop a dual use technology that has both military relevance and potential commercial applications. The Dual Use Applications Program and the military services will share the cost of these projects with industry.

In discussing COSSI, Kaminski noted, This initiative will pair industry, both commercial providers and military system prime contractors, with the military service organizations responsible for operating and maintaining our weapons systems. It will put the Department on a path to a time when the defense industry and DoD routinely look first to the commercial sector for the technology, products, and processes we need to keep our operating costs down. Looking first to the commercial sector is another cultural change for our acquisition system; COSSI is an opportunity to demonstrate and institutionalize it.

DARPA prototyped the early dual use efforts to leverage commercial technology at the research and development stage to increase affordability, performance, and sustainability of military equipment. Now, the Military Services will incorporate the dual use approach directly into their own technology development programs, explained Lee Buchanan, deputy director of the DARPA and executive director of the Dual Use Applications Program. And with COSSI, we will shift our focus towards inserting existing commercial technology into existing DoD weapons systems and platforms. The Dual Use Applications Programs two-pronged strategy will help us take advantage of commercial industrys research, technology, products, and processes at every stage of the acquisition life-cycle.

A solicitation (DARPA SOL 97-12) describing the COSSI program and soliciting industry proposals is available by: (1) calling 1-800-DUAL-USE; (2) sending a facsimile to the Joint Dual Use Program Office at (703) 807-0678; (3) sending email to address Dual-Use@arpa-mil; or, (4) downloading from the World Wide Web at http://www.jdupo.darpa.mil/jdupo/ (no longer available). A total of $100 million has been appropriated for this competition. Proposals are due on March 18, 1997; winners will be announced in early May.

Each military service will issue its own solicitation for the Science and Technology Initiative in the next few months.

News media may obtain copies of the COSSI solicitation from Lt. Col. Joan Ferguson, (703) 695-0192, in Pentagon room 2E765.

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