Headlines – August 12, 2016



Pentagon acknowledges U.S. ground forces supporting ISIS fight in Libya –
The Pentagon acknowledged Aug 8 that a “small number” of U.S. forces are going in and out of Libya in support of an expanded air war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.


Lockheed-Elbit team joins British tank-upgrade competition –
Lockheed Martin UK is to team with Israel’s Elbit Systems in its bid to secure a deal to update the British Army’s aging fleet of Challenger main battle tanks.
Bahrain to buy mobile TOW-RF missiles –
Raytheon is to provide tube-launched, optically tracked, wireless-guided missiles to the U.S. Army, Bahrain and Morocco.
France eyeing anti-ship missile sales for Kuwait helo order –
France stands ready to supply Kuwait with anti-ship missiles to arm the Caracal military transport helicopter the Gulf nation has just ordered from Airbus Helicopters, a French defense official said Aug. 10.
Air Force opens up JDAM options amid high demand for weapons –
The U.S. Air Force could explore alternative contractors to satisfy its insatiable need for all-weather, smart munitions, even as the service has called its primary joint direct attack munition supplier, Boeing, to produce more of the weapons.
New Mexico firm lands Naval Research Lab contract –
The Albuquerque-based engineering firm Applied Technology Associates has won a $27.8 million Naval Research Laboratory contract to build a new sensor and telescope for mapping satellites and other objects in deep space.
Report: India’s Russian-made MiG-29K Fighters Face Problems –
The Indian Navy’s primary fighter operating from the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya faces operational deficiencies due to defects in engines, airframes and fly-by-wire systems, according to a report by India’s autonomous auditor, the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). However, Indian Navy officials say the Russian-made MiG-29K remains the best choice available.
Poland in talks With France, Airbus over Caracal helicopters –
Poland is negotiating with both France and Airbus Helicopters for a technology transfer on a planned order of 50 Caracal military transport helicopters, according to sources close to the deal.
Taiwan advanced jet trainer nears bidding process –
Leonardo-Finmeccanica has launched a massive public relations effort in Taiwan to save an agreement with a local aviation company to honor a 2014 deal to co-build the M-346 Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) for filling Taiwan’s air force requirement for 66 aircraft to replace aging AT-3 Tzu Chung attack/trainers.
NATO begins GATM upgrade for AWACS –
NATO has begun the work of making its Boeing E-3 Airborne Warning and Control System aircraft compliant with operations in commercial airspace, Airbus Defence and Space disclosed in late July.
Saudi Arabia requests another 153 Abrams tanks –
The U.S. Department of State has approved the sale of 153 M1A2S Abrams main battle tanks and 20 M88 Hercules armoured recovery vehicles (ARVs) to Saudi Arabia that, together with related equipment and services, are worth an estimated $1.15 billion, the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation announced Aug. 9.
Lockheed flight tests Dual Mode Plus Paveway II –
Lockheed Martin has carried out two test flights of a developmental “Dual Mode Plus” configuration of the Paveway II laser-guided bomb, using a Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet.
Northrop Grumman to build Advanced Hawkeye for Japan –
Northrop Grumman has received a U.S. Navy contract to build a second E-2D Advanced Hawkeye for Japan.
Navy upgrading digital radios –
General Dynamics Mission Systems has been awarded a contract modification to improve high-frequency communications for Navy digital radios.
Spain to join European MALE 2020 UAV project –
Spain has taken is first concrete step towards joining the pan-European military unmanned aerial vehicle program with the cabinet approving an initial instalment to cover set-up costs.


The Air Force fighter pilot shortage is already a crisis — and it could soon get worse –
An acute shortage of Air Force fighter pilots could grow even worse, with nearly a third of all jobs becoming vacant in the coming years, senior service officials said Aug. 10.
Sixty U.S. Air Force programs could be delayed by CR –
With expectations that Congress will fail to pass a budget before the end of the fiscal year, the U.S. Air Force’s top official sounded the warning klaxon about what impact a continuing resolution would mean for her service.
KC-46 production decision expected later this month –
The KC-46 tanker program is heading toward a production decision later this August, during which Pentagon officials will determine whether to move forward with low-rate initial production of the Air Force’s newest refueling tanker, the service’s top civilian said Aug. 10.
Marines test robotic vehicle-mounted machine gun –
The Marine Corps just wrapped up a round of experiments with new and cutting-edge technology in the California desert, including tests with a gun mounted aboard an unmanned vehicle. This system, the Multi-Utility Tactical Transport Vehicle, or MUTT, from General Dynamics, is designed to take the load off dismounted troops.


Navy SEAL-turned-scientist works to solve the puzzle of battlefield brain injuries –
He’s studying to become a cognitive scientist and is on a doctoral track at the University of Texas at Dallas. His goal is to treat veterans suffering from traumatic brain injury or post-traumatic stress disorder, the most prevalent combat injuries from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.


China says new satellite will help safeguard interests at sea: China Daily –
A newly launched satellite will help China protect its maritime interests, the official China Daily newspaper reported Aug. 7 amid growing tensions over disputed territory in the South China Sea.
Space station supply run by Orbital ATK slips to September –
A space station supply run by a Virginia company has slipped to September.