2023 Science, Technology Budget a Mixed Bag

2023 Science, Technology Budget a Mixed Bag

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  • May 31, 2022
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Budgetary issues: Science and technology budget 2023 a mixed scholarship

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According to senior officials, the Department of Defense’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2023 is a major victory for research, development, testing and evaluation, especially the science and technology part of funding. However, a more detailed analysis of the demand and the impact of inflation indicates that the proposal is lower than the budget for fiscal year 2022.

The 2023 budget proposal includes $ 130 billion for RDT & E, a 16 percent increase over the proposed defense budget for 2022. The science and technology part (budget activity codes 6.1 to 6.3) includes $ 16.5 billion, up 12 percent, said Defense Undersecretary of Defense Research and Engineering Heidi Shyu during a webinar hosted by the National Defense Industry Association on April 20.

Shyu’s office would receive $ 1.6 billion in science and technology funding, a 21 percent increase. “So it’s a huge leap,” Shyu said.
The basic research for the entire Department of Defense is nearly $ 2.4 billion, an increase of 4%, and Shyu’s office would receive $ 244 million, an increase of 23%, with the proposed budget for 2023.

In terms of investment priorities, Shyu’s office funding aligns with the 14 “critical technology areas” he described in a Feb. 1 note.

5G microelectronics (especially onhoring), hypersonics, targeted energy, and integrated and cybernetic detection top the list according to funding.
Rear Admiral Lorin Selby, Chief of Naval Research at the Office of Naval Research, stated at the webinar that one-third of the Navy’s science and technology priorities align with the Office’s critical technology areas. research and engineering, and the rest are from the Navy. central. Some of the Navy’s $ 2.6 billion proposed funding for science and technology priorities include unmanned systems, sonar buoys, electric laser systems, and tools for collecting and merging live and virtual training data.

“We need tools that help us prioritize and focus on what humans should focus on and let machines do the things that machines can do,” Selby said. “This is one I’m duplicating.”

The $ 3.25 billion Air Force science and technology budget is divided by 25 percent for the Air Force’s enduring priorities, including ammunition, engines, aircraft power, nuclear systems, and observable low technology. and 75 percent for technology-critical areas. Space Force priorities include combat power projection, information mobility, and space security.

By 2023, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is seeking $ 896 million for microelectronics, driven largely by the next phase of the agency’s e-resurgence initiative to promote onshoring: $ 414 million for biotechnology, $ 412 million for artificial intelligence, $ 184 million for cybernetics, and $ 90 million for hypersonics.

The $ 2.7 billion Army budget for science and technology focuses on six long-term modernization priorities, including long-range precision fires, future vertical elevation, and soldier lethality. These include priority areas for research, such as disruptive energy, hypersonic flight, range, additive manufacturing, and synthetic biology.

“There’s a world beyond 2030, so we need to start turning the clock back a little bit and focus on those enabling technologies … to look for and mature technologies for what’s to come,” Jeffrey said. Singleton, director of technology in the office. of the Undersecretary of the Army.

The panelists highlighted the efforts to expand the set of technology partners and invest in future labor. The Office of Research and Engineering’s budget for small business innovation and technology transfer programs for small businesses amounts to $ 191 million in the 2023 proposal. Officials also noted an increase in funding for science, technology, engineering and math education and for historically black colleges and universities.

Selby argued that money is important, but there are structural issues that need to be addressed to ensure that programs achieve their goals and technology advances. “Part of that has to do with the fact that we have a lot, a lot of people who have their opinion on what’s going on with these different pots of money … there’s no single director,” he said.

“So you have several drivers trying to compete with each other … because we all operate with different incentives, different priorities, different budget deadlines, different acquisition deadlines, we have these missed opportunities right and left,” he added.

While the proposed budget for 2023 represents significant increases in science and technology funding above the 2022 president’s budget, the 2023 proposal is well below the enacted 2022 budget. As is often the case, Congress appropriated more than was sought in the 2022 budget proposal.

For example, the $ 16.5 billion 2023 request for science and technology funding is greater than the $ 14.7 billion requested in the 2022 President’s budget, but 13 percent less than the $ 20.5 billion budget request. $ 18.8 billion from Congress enacted in 2022. The 2023 application for basic research is 14 years old. percent less than the nearly $ 2.6 billion Congress enacted in 2022.

According to the 2023 proposal, funding for military science and technology is almost 37% below the funding enacted in 2022, and funding for the Navy and Air Force has dropped by 18% and 13%. , respectively.

DARPA, which accounts for 25 percent of the Department of Defense’s science and technology funding, would get a 6 percent increase in its funding enacted in 2022. This is one of the few increases in science and technology funding for on the enacted 2022 budget.

In addition to the actual dollars being lower than the funding promulgated in 2022, inflation will further reduce the purchase of the 2023 President’s budget.

Themes: Budget, Research and Development, Science and Technological Engineering

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