Department of Defense
In August 2018, Vice President Mike Pence on behalf of the White House announced the rollout of Space Force. The Space Force will become the sixth branch of U.S. armed forces and the first new military branch in over 71 years. A report prepared by the Department of Defense (DoD) outlines the pillars for a “unified approach to secure U.S. space leadership” and the steps to implement the new branch, including “ . . . anchor development initiatives to the modernization priorities outlined in the National Defense Strategy.”
The birth of the “Space Force” is representative of the DoD’s expansive effort to strategically invest in future technologies. As further testament to this focus, in early 2018 the Pentagon created an Undersecretary of Defense for Research and Engineering to oversee prototyping, experimentation, tech transition, and tech development as well as the allocation of resources of research and the unification of research efforts.
New Capabilities. Novel Approaches.
The DoD’s prolific modernization push is not merely a matter of equipment upgrades, but moreover far-reaching Department-wide development of new capabilities and novel approaches to unearthing those capabilities through accelerated innovation. The Defense Innovation Unit Experimental (DIUx), the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and the Silicon Valley Innovation Program (SVIP) – an offspring of the Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) – all illustrate the DoD’s steadfast commitment to elevating its inventiveness and ingenuity with the aim of fast-tracking solutions to urgent national defense problems.