Artificial intelligence: the bumpy path through defense acquisition
Ehn, Eric J.
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The use of artificial intelligence systems is ready to transition from basic science research and a blooming commercial industry to strategic implementation in the Defense Acquisition system. The purpose of this research is to determine the problems awaiting artificial intelligence (AI) systems inherent to defense acquisition. AI is a field of scientific study focused on the construction of systems that can act rationally, behave humanly, and adapt. To achieve AI behavior takes AI essentials, which consider mobility, system perspective, and algorithms. Unfortunately, AI essentials are under addressed in the concept of operations that fuels the Joint Capabilities Integration and Development System. Influences to the concept of operations analyzed in this research include strategic documentation, joint technology demonstrations, and exercises that aim to capture technology-based lessons learned. Failure to address AI essentials causes problems in defense acquisition: system requirements are impossible to define; transition of AI technology fails; testing cannot be evaluated with confidence; and life cycle planning is at best a guess. To address these issues, the Department of Defense needs improved planning, acquisition personnel training, and AI-supported acquisition processes to achieve cost, schedule, and performance goals.
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