Department of Defense's Waiver of Competitive Prototyping Requirement for Enhanced Polar System Program

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Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "DOD's rationale for waiving WSARA's competitive prototyping requirement for CAPS covered both bases provided in the statute; however, DOD did not provide complete information about the potential benefits of competitive prototyping or support for its conclusion that prototyping would result in schedule delays. In the waiver, DOD found reasonable the Air Force's conclusion that the additional $49 million cost of producing competing prototypes exceeded the negligible expected life-cycle benefits because minimal opportunities exist to increase CAPS technological and design maturity through competitive prototyping. The Air Force's conclusions about ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. August 23, 2012.

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Description

Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "DOD's rationale for waiving WSARA's competitive prototyping requirement for CAPS covered both bases provided in the statute; however, DOD did not provide complete information about the potential benefits of competitive prototyping or support for its conclusion that prototyping would result in schedule delays. In the waiver, DOD found reasonable the Air Force's conclusion that the additional $49 million cost of producing competing prototypes exceeded the negligible expected life-cycle benefits because minimal opportunities exist to increase CAPS technological and design maturity through competitive prototyping. The Air Force's conclusions about CAPS technical and design risk are supported by its market research, but its cost-benefit analysis was incomplete because neither the waiver nor the business case analysis supporting it provided an estimated dollar value for the expected benefits. Further, the Air Force's cost estimate of competitively prototyping CAPS was based on a program office estimate, which has not been independently reviewed by DOD's Office of Cost Assessment and Performance Evaluation. DOD also did not provide support in the waiver for its conclusion that implementing competitive prototyping will delay EPS's initial operational capability and result in DOD being unable to meet critical national security objectives. Finally, the CAPS acquisition strategy anticipates the use of a cost-reimbursement contract for designing and building the system; however it may be difficult for DOD to meet the requirements for justifying the use of a cost-type contract for development, given the low design and development risk described in the waiver."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • August 23, 2012

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  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Department of Defense's Waiver of Competitive Prototyping Requirement for Enhanced Polar System Program, text, August 23, 2012; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc301396/: accessed May 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.