The Department of the Army meets its materiel requirements principally through purchase from private sources. However, the Army produces certain ordnance-related items and performs some ordnance-related services in a set of arsenals, ammunition plants, other ammunition activities, and depots. The Army operates some of these facilities; contractors operate others. Although this set of facilities has been reduced since the end of the Cold War, the remaining facilities still operate at less than their full capacity today. The unused and underused capacity raises questions about how many of these facilities the Army needs, how large they need to be, and who should own and operate them. This report represents the third phase of a multiyear study that examines the Army's ordnance industrial base and makes recommendations about these issues.
The Army defined the scope of this study to encompass the manufacturing activities of only 14 ammunition plants and 2 arsenals. It excluded depots. In April 2000, the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations and Plans (DCSOPS) asked RAND's Arroyo Center to undertake the study.
Upon agreeing with RAND Arroyo to conduct the research, the Army created a study advisory group comprising representatives of OUSD(AT&L), OUSD(C), the Joint Staff, ODUSA(OR), OASA(ALT), OASA(FM), PAED, ODCSLOG, Center for Army Analysis, Army Materiel Command, and chaired by the director of Force Development, formerly in DCSOPS, recently transferred to the newly created DCS for Programs now redesignated the G-8.
As research progressed, a three-phase research project evolved. The study advisory group (SAG) endorsed the following approach:
Phase 1: Assessment of excess capacity at Watervliet and Rock Island arsenals.