Meet the Navy Reserve Rapid Research and Development Unit

Commanding Officer, Navy Reserve-Rapid Research Development unit, Capt. Conrad Dungca

Since its inception, the Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) Reserve Program (NRP) has supported NAVAIR in its mission to provide full life-cycle support of naval aircraft, weapons and systems operated by Sailors and Marines. The Navy Reserve-Rapid Research and Development (NR-RRD) unit, commanded by Capt. Conrad Dungca, is directly aligned in support of NAVAIR’s strategic imperative to rapidly develop and acquire difference-making systems.

“I am incredibly proud to lead the 40 officers of the NR-RRD unit who provide uniformed acquisition and engineering support for rapid research and development efforts while maintaining readiness to employ systems for test and evaluation, demonstrations, exercises, and contingency operations forward,” Dungca said. “Our mission focus for 2020 included delivering capability and readiness with increased agility and speed.”

NR-RRD’s support is concentrated into two main mission areas: Rapid Innovative Systems and Readiness Engineering.

Matt Robinson, NR-RRD’S mission director, explained that the Rapid Innovation Mission area supports NAVAIR’s Test and Evaluation mission at the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) developing, testing, demonstrating, and assessing innovative concepts and technologies that supply critical capabilities to meet time-sensitive operational needs. Focal areas for this mission are support for NAWCAD’s Unmanned Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (UX) 24, U.S. Naval Test Pilot School, and the NAVAIR’s Fleet Design effort that is paving the way for air, surface, subsurface, and space asset integration.

In support of Engineering Readiness missions, NR-RRD personnel provide operational and engineering expertise to achieve required aircraft readiness goals across the Naval Aviation Enterprise. Initiatives in this mission area include development of NAVAIR’s approach for product integrity, analysis of maintenance return-on-investment data, and evaluation of new personal protective equipment for aviation maintainers to ensure quality, reliability, functionality, and practicality. In addition, the NR-RRD unit provides personnel with a unique combination of operational experience, technical expertise and industry perspective to support NAVAIR’s Systems Engineering Transformation with the goal of reducing the acquisition cycle time by applying system models in the development of weapon systems.

“During fiscal year 2020, the NR-RRD unit contributed more than 2,346 workdays in direct support of NAVAIR,” Dungca said. “One of those projects, Maintenance Return-on-investment Data Analysis (MRDA) has provided valuable support to NAVAIR this year, and I am excited to introduce the project personnel and provide an update on our progress thus far. Stay tuned for follow-on articles to learn more about the mission areas, other projects, and the men and women who support NR-RRD.”