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March 24, 2014

Headlines March 24, 2014

Business:

Lockheed Martin F-35’s software delayed, GAO says -

Delays in testing critical software for Lockheed Martin’s F-35 jet are threatening to delay the Pentagon’s most expensive weapon and boost development costs, according to congressional investigators. 

Boeing U.S. tanker program seen $1 billion over budget -

The U.S. Air Force on Friday estimated that Boeing’s development of a new refueling plane will cost nearly $1.1 billion more than initially planned, but the terms of the government’s contract mean Boeing must cover the added costs.

U.S. reassures Taiwan on funding for F-16 radar upgrade -

The same week that the U.S. Air Force said it had figured out a way to get its counterparts in Taiwan new radars for its 146 F-16 fighter jets, sources at Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense are accusing US officials of lying to them and avoiding questions on the impact that the cancellation of the upgrades on the US side will have on Taiwan.

In defense industry, a souring mood on acquisition reform -

When Trey Obering was deputy director of the Defense Department’s missile defense agency in 2002, he was asked to fix one of the most troubled acquisition programs in recent history. The airborne laser — a modified Boeing 747 jet that carried a megawatt laser to shoot down ballistic missiles — was handed over by the Air Force to MDA after eight years of nonachievement. 

South Korea to award tanker, fighter contracts by end of year -

The Republic of Korea Air Force expects to make a selection and sign a contract on its new tanker before the end of the year, according to one of the service’s top generals.

Satellite industry frets about future military business -

The Pentagon spends about a billion dollars a year on satellite communications services from commercial vendors, which supply about 80 percent of the military’s demand. 

Threatened sanctions on Russia could put pressure on U.S. allies -

For U.S. allies who would likely face U.S. pressure to follow suit if sanctions are imposed, Russia is a critically important supplier. 

M-346 rollout marks Israeli-Italian mega deal -

Alenia Aermacchi has rolled out its first M-346 jet trainer for Israel, part of a reciprocal deal covering satellites and early warning aircraft for Italy. The deal has boosted ties between the countries and may now see Tel Aviv sending its F-35 joint strike fighters to Italy for maintenance.

Bombardier sees $3.4 billion Russia plane orders stalled -

Bombardier’s plans to build planes in Russia and the sale of $3.4 billion of aircraft will be delayed as Canada joins the U.S. in imposing sanctions against the country after it moved to annex Crimea, Chief Executive Officer Pierre Beaudoin said.

Bombardier considers refinancing 2016 Euro bonds to cut costs -

Bombardier, the world’s third-largest plane maker, may refinance 785 million euro of bonds due in 2016 with U.S. dollar-denominated debt to lower borrowing costs and extend maturities.

 

Defense:

Army’s delay of black box for Chinook too late for 22 SEALs -

The Army talked about but never followed through on any plan to install voice and flight data recorders on one of its main war machines, the CH-47D Chinook helicopter — such as the one that was shot down in Afghanistan in 2011, killing all 30 U.S. service members onboard, including 22 members of SEAL Team 6. 

The wait remains for vehicle meant to replace Humvees -

The Joint Light Tactical Vehicle, the Pentagon’s long-awaited replacement for the workhorse Humvee, is at least four years away from full production, Army records show. 

Global Hawk to deploy to Japan for first time -

The RQ-4 Global Hawk, the massive surveillance drone once targeted for extinction and now considered by the Air Force as the answer for future intelligence needs, is expanding its reach into the Pacific this year with its first deployment to Japan.

 

Veterans:

Extraordinary collection of 5,000 World War I photographs salvaged -

A dustman with a passion for history has compiled one of the Britain’s best collections of First World War photographs after spending decades fishing out pictures from rubbish dumps and bins. Bob Smethurst spent 36 years working in refuse and began saving the remarkable images from landfill because he could not bear to see them destroyed. 

After 50 years, finally at rest -

A burial service was held at Arlington National Cemetery March 21, for seven service members who died in a plane crash near Bu Prang, Vietnam on Oct. 24, 1964. The remains of Army SSgt. Lawrence Woods were recovered in 2010 and recently identified by Joint POW/MIA Accounting Command. 

 

Space:

Has NASA found a new Earth? -

The hunt for alien life has been given a boost after scientists discovered a habitable planet almost the same size as Earth. Astronomer Thomas Barclay from NASA’s Ames Research Centre in California made the discovery using data collected by the Kepler space telescope.

A stellar view! NASA reveals the clearest panorama of the Milky Way ever made -

It is hard to comprehend the size our galaxy, but now NASA has created an incredible panoramic view of the Milky Way that you can tour by clicking a button. The star-studded panorama is made up of over two million infrared images taken over the last decade by the space agency’s Spitzer Space Telescope. 

NASA seeks bids for $6 million ‘asteroid capture’ program -

NASA said March 22 that it would offer $6 million to public entities or private companies to develop a plan for its program to capture a 500-ton asteroid to put into orbit around the Moon, where it could be used as a step toward a manned space mission to Mars.

 

International:

Iran building giant fake U.S. Navy aircraft carrier -

Iran appears to be getting ready to blow up an American aircraft carrier — of its own making. Intelligence analysts have found evidence that the Middle Eastern nation has been building a giant mock carrier in the style of the Navy’s Nimitz-class ships, the New York Timesreported. Satellite images of Iran’s Gachin shipyard show its construction near Bandar Abbas on the Persian Gulf last summer. 

Britain should station 3,000 troops in Germany -

Britain must send a strong signal to Russia’s aggression in the Ukraine by reversing the cost-cutting decision to remove all troops from Germany. 

Finns, Swedes weigh NATO membership -

Heightened regional tensions, which have grown in the wake of the disputed legality of Crimea’s referendum to join the Russian Federation, have rekindled debate over whether non-aligned Sweden and Finland can protect their sovereignty outside of NATO.

Western leaders call for NATO show of force amid Russian buildup -

Western leaders March 23 called for a repositioning of NATO forces in light of a buildup of Russian troops on Ukraine’s eastern border that the alliance’s military leader called very sizable and very ready.

U.K. may arm Reapers with Brimstone -

The Royal Air Force is closing on a decision of whether to deploy Dual Mode Brimstone missiles on its remotely piloted MQ-9 Reaper aircraft following a series of test firings in the U.S., including a hit on a small truck traveling at 70 mph.

For first time, German Army officer to be USAREUR chief of staff -

The U.S. military plans to appoint a German officer to be the next chief of staff of U.S. Army-Europe, Stars and Stripes has learned. 

Philippines to sign aircraft contracts worth about $526 million -

The Philippines will award aircraft contracts to South Korean and Canadian companies worth $525.62 million, a senior defense official said March 21, boosting its capability as tension simmers in the South China Sea.




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Headlines December 17, 2014

News: U.S. Air Force tanker platform slated for year-end debut - Boeing is planning for first flight of its 767-2C – upon which the U.S. Air Force’s new KC-46 tanker will be based – by year’s end, six months late. Northrop Grumman wins $657.4 million deal to supply drones to South Korea - Northrop Grumman has won...
 
 

NASA launches new Micro-g NExT for undergraduates

NASA is offering undergraduate students an opportunity to participate in a new microgravity activity called Micro-g Neutral Buoyancy Experiment Design Teams. The deadline for proposals is Jan. 28, 2015. Micro-g NExT challenges students to work in teams to design and build prototypes of spacewalking tools to be used by astronauts for spacewalk training in the...
 
 
launch1

Storm fails to quench liftoff of secret reconnaissance satellite

The fiery launch of an Atlas V (541), among the most powerful of the venerable Atlas family, briefly dispelled the gloom over Californiaís Central Coast on the evening of Dec. 12. A team of personnel from United Launch Allianc...
 

 
Coast Guard photograph

Navy demonstrates unmanned helicopter operations aboard Coast Guard cutter

http://static.dvidshub.net/media/video/1412/DOD_102145893/DOD_102145893-512×288-442k.mp4 Coast Guard photograph An MQ-8B Fire Scout UAS is tested off the Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf near Los Angeles, Dec. 5 2014. The Coast...
 
 
GPS-OCX

GPS III, OCX successfully demonstrate key satellite command, control capabilities

Lockheed Martin and Raytheon successfully completed the fourth of five planned launch and early orbit exercises to demonstrate new automation capabilities, information assurance and launch readiness of the worldís most powerfu...
 
 

Aerojet Rocketdyne successfully demonstrates 3D printed rocket propulsion system for satellites

Aerojet Rocketdyne has successfully completed a hot-fire test of its MPS-120 CubeSat High-Impulse Adaptable Modular Propulsion System. The MPS-120 is the first 3D-printed hydrazine integrated propulsion system and is designed to provide propulsion for CubeSats, enabling missions not previously available to these tiny satellites. The project was funded out of the NASA Office of Chief...
 




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