By Jason Cutshaw (SMDC/ARSTRAT)February 21, 2019
REDSTONE ARSENAL, Alabama - When Army leaders have questions about emerging technologies, Team Redstone provides the answers.
Dr. Bruce D. Jette, assistant secretary of the Army for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, or ASA(ALT), spent Feb. 13 visiting organizations across Redstone Arsenal to learn how he can support their efforts in defending the nation.
In his duties as the ASA(ALT), Jette serves as the Army acquisition executive, senior procurement executive and science advisor to the secretary of the Army, as well as the senior research and development official for the Department of the Army. He also has the principal responsibility for all Army logistical matters.
"Huntsville has quite a few critical capabilities from missiles and space to logistics to aviation," Jette said. "It was a good opportunity to get with the people who are involved and responsible for these different areas so I could talk to them about issues, how they can be helpful, how I can support them up at the Pentagon, and address challenges the Army is having to face."
While visiting the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command headquarters, Jette learned how the command is supporting the Army's air and missile defense efforts and why these efforts are important to force readiness.
"One of the things that has always impressed me is the quality of the professional people in SMDC," Jette said. "Having access to people who understand all the subtleties, all of the technologies, all of the players who are able to contribute to our defense in the area, and have commands with leaders who understand the interactions of all these things - that has been invaluable."
During his time at SMDC, experts briefed Jette on how the command's directed energy efforts support Army modernization.
"Directed energy is the weapon of the future," Jette said. "If it's possible to support its advancement in a more rapid fashion, that's what I'm going to do. I've been following what's been going on in SMDC for about a year now and am very supportive of it."
"SMDC has done well at pushing the technology for the laser forward," Jette said. "We're going to get it on the battlefield, and we're going to do that sooner than later. We're going to make it an integrated system - an important component of where we're going."
Along with SMDC, Jette also visited Program Executive Office - Aviation and the Army's Future Vertical Lift cross-functional team to gather information on how to keep moving ahead. He also met with Gen. Gustave Perna, commanding general of Army Materiel Command, to discuss ways to better support the warfighter.
"I enjoy getting over to AMC and talking to Gen. Perna," Jette said. "I'm supporting his efforts, and we are looking at ways we can leverage technology to improve our logistics status around the world, do it more efficiently, more thoroughly, and more cost effectively."
Before leaving, Jette praised the Team Redstone workforce. He highlighted the community's localized expertise in logistics, program management, missiles, space and aviation, as well as its strong civilian workforce and industry partnerships.
"We have all of that expertise here and it's invaluable to the Army," said Jette. "In many ways, the holistic talent set down here in Huntsville is essential to us being able to advance all of those technologies, all of those weapon systems."