Reuters reports: The Pentagon’s Strategic Capabilities Office plans to reach out to U.S. industry in about a month for ways to put existing weapons technologies to new uses as the department scrambles to maintain its competitive edge over Russia and China.
“We’re looking for things we can put our hands on today, go test today,” said Will Roper, director of the SCO, or what he called the Pentagon’s “take risk” office, said.
This is the first time the office is broadly going out to industry for specific ideas on how to repurpose existing weapons, which could result in lucrative new contracts.
The secretive Pentagon office was set up in August 2012 at the behest of Defense Secretary Ash Carter, then the deputy defense secretary, who worried that the U.S. military was not ready for a return to great power competition after years of fighting extremist groups in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The office is now managing a nearly $1 billion dollar annual budget that is aimed at upsetting assumptions made by China and Russia about U.S. military capabilities. [Continue reading…]