Ensuring sustenance of Singapore third generation army's weapon systems
Phua, Debbie Yee Lei
Date of Issue2016-05-31
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
The Singapore Army will continue to acquire more advanced weapon systems as part of the 3G SAF transformation effort, and the importance of ensuring sustenance of the new weapon systems must not be neglected. Guided by the Defence Capability Management (DCM) framework, the acquisition of new weapon systems follows a set of processes that lead the project team to realise the new weapon system. The emerging challenges in the management of the 3G Army weapon systems, if not addressed, will have an impact in the availability of the weapon systems and hence affect the operational readiness of the Army. These challenges include the increasing complexity, the declining manpower resources, as well as the defence budget limitations. Use of systems engineering (SE) in the various acquisition phases ensures that the total life cycle of the weapon system is considered. This includes the involvement ofArmy Engineer, as part ofthe dedicated core project team to ensure sustenance requirements are addressed and followed through from capability development planning to capability sustenance phase. System requirements need to be managed and baseline requirement should include designing for reliability and maintainability. Configuration management must also be done diligently. Robust supportability is also paramount to ensure sustenance of the 3G Army weapon systems. This includes timeliness and comprehensive ILS, ensuring that a robust long-term logistics support plan is considered from the beginning, and building capabilities in our local defence industries. If the Army fails to recognise the importance of ensuring sustenance at the frontend, and acquire new capabilities without sufficient considerations and effort as elaborated earlier , the Army will fall into the same trap as many other nations where millions are spent in acquiring new weapon systems that are unreliable, unsupportable, and hence of low availability and unable to meet its operational needs.