By digitizing and integrating the lifecycle enterprise, the command will be better positioned to deliver capabilities at the speed of relevance as it executes its mission in support of the National Defense Strategy.
“A number of defense and many non-defense industries have made a culture shift to incorporating digital tools and processes in every part of their organizations in order to deliver capabilities at ever increasing speed and efficiency. They do this by designing, sustaining and modernizing capabilities in an integrated digital ecosystem. The Air Force needs to embrace 21st century capabilities to be faster, more efficient and more effective throughout the entire acquisition life cycle,” Cooley said.
While the quality of Air Force capabilities is excellent, the time to field complex systems has continued to increase over the years. For example, in the 1970s, the F-16 Fighting Falcon averaged six years from concept to field delivery. In the 1990s, the C-17 Globemaster III saw timelines of about 12 years. Work on the F-35 Lightning II began in the early 2000s, with final full operational capability estimated to exceed more than 20 years at this time.
“We need to streamline the design, development, fabrication and testing to get platforms to our warfighters faster. This is critical to our support of the National Defense Strategy and what our Air Force needs to continue to effectively fly, fight and win today and in the future,” Bunch said.
The effort will leverage the expertise of AFMC Airmen across the enterprise in collaboration with industry partners, the U.S. Space Force, Space and Missile Center and the Office of the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics.
“This is a team effort, and every functional domain is crucial to the success of our transformation,” Bunch said. “We’re building the infrastructure to support the Air Force we need for the future.”