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Eric Fiel: Special Operations Command Seeks Quicker Weapons Development

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Fiel1U.S. Air Force Lieutenant General Eric Fiel, U.S. Special Operations Command, said at a conference this week, that arms makers today should expedite new weapons development, Reuters reported Thursday.

“We put a man on the moon in 9 years. We can’t even bring a major weapons system in less than that now… Why does it take that long?” the general said.

Andrea Shalal-Esa writes that Fiel spoke at the annual Air Force Association conference and said military budget cuts and the services’ tendency to add more requirements after awarding a contract are also factors in the slow progress of weapons development.

Fiel also talked about the need to develop a strict set of standards for sensors and other equipment for easier and faster training and integration into existing platforms.

“We can’t afford to have a different type of sensor for every airplane,” Fiel added.

During the conference, Fiel said that the SOCOM intends to acquire manned and unmanned aircrafts for hostile battlefield environments, sensors that can penetrate dense jungles such as those in South America, Africa or Asia, weather tracking sensors in remote areas and lighter and longer-lasting batteries for commandos’ equipment.

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