Thank you, Chris. We talked about the 70 percent cost. And we believe that you set the trajectory for affordability in a system at the beginning of the design phase. And, since we're committed to affordability throughout the lifecycle of our programs, we are using modular open system architecture principles, along with logistics analytics, to be able to design our systems to be affordable over the long run. There's a number of key principles that we follow as we go through our modular open system architecture designs: modular functional designs, how can we break apart the system, both for sustainment, as well as performance and cost. And I'll elaborate more on that a little later. Application software we use. Software is a big part of system costs. How can we reuse that and allow it to evolve as time goes on? Another part that I'm going to talk about is collaboration and competition. We believe affordability is driven by competition. And working with our supply base, we're able to drive competition and affordable systems in the future. Interoperability, our systems have to continue to be interoperable. And, as I said, all these sum up to lifecycle affordability. So, as we talk about modular system architectures, what we're really trying to drive towards is something called product line architectures, where we're sharing common components across our various products. This enables us not only to lower our costs in our development, but it also enables us and our customers to be able to share in common stories of sparing, common depot actions, and overall, commonality across platforms. We also believe that, through these commonalities, the training becomes common across components. So, once we have a system that has similar components, we're able to share training across them. We also employ diagnostics and prognostics in our systems. So our systems understand what their mission-capable status is, as well as what spares and repairs are needed in order for them to meet that capable status. The key is to having the right spares at the right time. One of the things I talked about earlier is the functional partitioning of our systems. It is very important to how you partition them, such that it doesn't set the cost in the future. So, and recently, we've been able to partition our systems to balance affordability, availability, and performance. By doing that, we're able to broaden the supply base for each of these components. As an example, we recently had a supplier conference where we brought in various suppliers to how they could provide components into our systems and share in our open architectures. As we talk about open architectures in a hardware perspective, there's also open architecture from a software perspective. The software is a big part of today's systems. We use a component-based software architecture that allows not only further development, but allows third parties to develop applications that can fit into our systems, providing advanced capabilities, as well as being able to take advantage of the best capable software development. We use what we refer to as a middleware, that isolates our computer programs from our processing hardware. And we do that because it enables an easier upgrade path as new processing hardware becomes available, being able to maintain the software and inject new capabilities. In addition, this middleware provides an application interface that our third party suppliers can provide software into, and again, be able to have a larger group of applications, as well as competition for software. All these components, whether it's commonality hardware, commonality in software, open interfaces, are fundamental to driving competition and being able to drive down costs in our systems and the future logistics. So Jim is going to take this theme we've talked about in affordability, and continue that discussion at the system level.
Innovative Logistics Solutions Presented at the National Press Club
Logistics Effectiveness and Design
June 25, 2013