Like a profession juggler, the U.S. Air Force has a lot of balls in the air when it comes to major acquisition programs. It is modernizing simultaneously its fleets of tactical fighters, bombers and aerial refueling tankers. The service is about to release the final request for proposals for a new trainer to replace the obsolescent T-38. It is working on a strategy for a new airborne ground surveillance platform. Then there is access to space where the Air Force has promoted a competition for launch services. But the way the Air Force is choosing to manage some of its new modernization programs may increase the risk that it will not be able to keep all the balls in the air simultaneously. I have written about some of the problems the Air Force may face here.
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