McAleese & Associates: Michael Griffin Wants DoD to Build ‘Proliferated LEO’ Constellation

Jeff Brody
Jim McAleese

McAleese & Associates has released a report on key takeaways from the remarks of Michael Griffin, undersecretary for research and engineering at the Department of Defense and a 2019 Wash100 award winner, at a Chamber of Commerce event held Tuesday.

Griffin said the Pentagon must have a dedicated proliferated LEO system or constellation of small satellites in low-Earth orbit designed for the existential U.S. survival mission.

He cited DoD’s need for high-speed, low-cost ‘commercial-like’ development and production process and secure platforms that could provide ‘guaranteed communications’ in wartime and ‘guaranteed survival’ in jammed and harsh environments, Jim McAleese, founder and principal at McAleese & Associates and a 2019 Wash100 awardee, wrote in the report.

“There has to be a national security substructure to any future architecture … that can be guaranteed. … We are going to have to invest in the provider … to provide these extra things. … My hope …is to use commercial sector practices…to manufacture the items we need to address national security requirements,” Griffin said. “DoD needs to engage commercial sector contractors, in building to our requirements … but by the methods that the commercial sector can bring.”

Griffin noted the Space Development Agency is prioritizing the development of a communications transport layer and a surveillance and tracking layer for hypersonic defense.

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