Acquisition Category (ACAT)
ACAT I – programs are Major
Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAPs). An MDAP is defined as a program estimated by
the Under Secretary of Defense (Acquisition and Technology) (USD( A&T))
to require eventual expenditure for research, development, test, and
evaluation of more than $355 million (fiscal year (FY) 96 constant dollars)
or procurement of more than $2.135 billion (FY96 constant dollars), or
those designated by the USD(A&T) to be ACAT I.
II – programs are defined as those acquisition programs that do
not meet the criteria for an ACAT I program, but do meet the criteria for a
major system. A major system is defined as a program estimated by the DoD
Component Head to require eventual expenditure for research, development,
test, and evaluation of more than $135M in FY96 constant dollars, or for
procurement of more than $640M in FY96 constant dollars, or those designated
by the DoD Component Head to be ACAT II.
III – programs are defined as those acquisition programs that
do not meet the criteria for an ACAT I, or an ACAT II. The MDA is designated
by the CAE and shall be at the lowest appropriate level. This category
includes less-than-major AISs.
ACAT IV (Army only)
– ACAT programs in the Army not otherwise designated as ACAT I,
II or III are designated ACAT IV. ACAT IV programs are managed by a systems
manager within a materiel command as opposed to ACAT I-III programs which
are managed by a PM.
ACAT IV (Navy and Marine Corps
only) – ACAT programs in the Navy and Marine Corps not
otherwise designated as ACAT I, II or III are designated ACAT IV. There are
two categories of ACAT IV programs: IVT and IVM. ACAT IVT programs require
operational test and evaluation while ACAT IVM programs do not.
Advanced Concept Technology Demonstration (ACTD) – A means
of demonstrating mature technology to address critical military needs. ACTDs
themselves are not acquisition programs, but are designed to provide a
residual, usable capability upon completion, and/or transition into
acquisition programs. Funding is programmed to support two years in the field.
ACTDs are funded with Advanced Technology Development (ATD)
Acquisition Reform – An ongoing
series of initiatives sponsored by OSD (especially USD( A&T) and DUSD( AR))
to streamline and tailor the acquisition process. Initiatives include
statutory and regulatory reform, CAIV, reform of specifications and standards
policy, preference for commercial items, electronic data interchange and the
use of the IPPD/IPT management philosophy for systems development and oversight.
Beyond Low Rate Initial Production (BLRIP) –
(See LRIP below). When a developing system seeks a decision to go into full
rate production (FRP), the DOT&E must provide a report to Congress and the
Secretary of Defense. This report is commonly called the "Beyond LRIP" report.
Blue Books – The name commonly given to the books
prepared for the members of the Defense Acquisition Board (DAB) prior to
Milestone Decision Meetings. They contained the major data such as planned
cost and schedule for the system under review. These books were discontinued
Cost As an Independent Variable (CAIV) –
Methodologies used to acquire and operate affordable DoD systems by setting
aggressive, achievable life cycle cost objectives, and managing achieve-ment
of these objectives by trading off performance and schedule, as necessary.
Cost objectives balance mission needs with projected out-year resources,
taking into account anticipated process improvements in both DoD and industry.
CAIV has brought attention to the government's responsibilities for
setting/adjusting life-cycle cost objectives and for evaluating requirements
in terms of overall cost consequences.
Operational Test and Evaluation (DOT&E) – The senior individual within the
Office of the Secretary of Defense responsible for operational testing policy
and oversight. This position is mandated by law, 10USC2366.
Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E)
– Operational test and evaluation conducted on production, or production
representative articles, to determine whether systems are operationally
effective and suitable, and which supports the decision to proceed beyond low
rate initial production (LRIP). The Navy calls this test OPEVAL, Operational
Integrated Product and Process Development (IPPD)
– A management technique that simultaneously integrates all essential
acquisition activities through the use of multidisciplinary teams to optimize
the design, manufacturing, and supportability processes. IPPD facilitates
meeting cost and performance objectives from product concept through
production, including field support. One of the key IPPD tenets is
multidisciplinary teamwork through Integrated Product Teams (IPTs).
Integrated Product Team (IPT) – Team composed of
representatives from appropriate functional disciplines working together to
build successful programs, identify and resolve issues, and make sound and
timely recommendations to facilitate decision making. There are three types of
IPTs: overarching IPTs (OIPTs) focus on strategic guidance, program
assessment, and issue resolution; working level IPTs (WIPTs) identify and
resolve program issues, determine program status, and seek opportunities for
acquisition reform; and program level IPTs focus on program execution and may
include representatives from both government and after contract award
Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) –
The minimum number of systems (other than ships and satellites) to
provide production representative articles for operational test and
evaluation (OT&E), to establish an initial production base, and to permit an orderly
increase in the production rate sufficient to lead to full-rate production
upon successful completion of operational testing. For major defense
acquisition programs (MDAPs), LRIP quantities in excess of 10 percent of the
acquisition objective must be reported in the selected acquisition report
(SAR). For ships and satellites LRIP is the minimum quantity and rate that
preserves the mobilization base.
Milestone Decision Authority
(MDA) – The individual designated in accordance with
criteria established by the USD( A&T), or by the Assistant Secretary of Defense
(Command, Control, Communications, and Intelligence) (ASD (C3I)) for
automated information system (AIS) acquisition programs, to approve entry of
an acquisition program into the next phase (DoD 5000.2-R).
Operational Test Activities (OTAs) – Each Service
organizationally has an independent activity charged with the conduct and
evaluation of operational testing within that Service. The Commander of the
OTA is usually a two-star General or Flag officer.
Acquisition Reports (SAR) – Standard, comprehensive, summary status
reports on major defense acquisition programs (MDAPs) (Acquisition Category
(ACAT) I) required for periodic submission to the Congress. They include key
cost, schedule, and technical information.
(DoDD) 5000.1 "Defense Acquisition" – The principal DoD directive on
acquisition, it states policies and principles for all DoD acquisition
programs and identifies the Department's key acquisition officials and forums.
DoD Regulation 5000.2-R "Mandatory Procedures for Major
Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAPs) and Major Automated Information System
(MAIS) Acquisition Programs" – Sets forth mandatory procedures for
MDAPs and MAISs and, specifically where stated, for other than MDAPs or MAISs.
Authorizes milestone decision authorities (MDAs) to tailor procedures as they
see fit, consistent with statutory requirements.