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May 5, 2014

Headlines May 5, 2014

News:

DOD personnel costs could force program cuts -

The first of several fiscal 2015 Pentagon spending bills began to come into focus last week, signaling something the defense sector has been lacking for years: Stability. But that could change dramatically in 2016.

 

Business:

With lawsuits, mergers, U.S. space market primed for changes -

A series of aggressive moves from two major space companies in the past two weeks is a sign that the military space launch sector is ripe for change, according to analysts and former US Defense Department officials.

Production standard AH-6i Little Bird makes maiden flight -

The first production standard Boeing AH-6i Little Bird light attack/reconnaissance helicopter has made its maiden flight, the company announced May 1. 

Navy looking for fresh thinking on future warships -

It took the Navy more than 10 years to design and start building its littoral combat ships. The warship that would succeed the LCS — dubbed “small surface combatant” — might be in the fleet within just five years. 

Mississippi-built Fire Scout aircraft on Navy’s cutting block -

President Barack Obama’s proposed 2015 budget drops funding for purchases of the Navy’s unmanned, rotary-winged Fire Scout aircraft, which takes off and lands from ships and is being built in Moss Point, Miss.

U.S. contractors scale up search for Heartbleed-like flaws -

Across the U.S., a new league of defense contractors is mining the foundation of the Internet for glitches that can be turned to the country’s strategic advantage. They’re part of a cybermilitary industrial complex that’s grown up in more than a dozen states and employs thousands of civilians, according to 15 people who work for contractors and the government. The projects are so sensitive their funding is classified, and so extensive a bid to curb their scope will be resisted not only by intelligence agencies but also the world’s largest military supply chain.

Defense industry eyes growth in Middle East -

Nearly $100 billion in defense sales are up for grabs in the Middle East and North Africa through 2019, along with tens of billions of dollars in services and support contracts, according to new estimates by the consulting firm Avascent. The region’s largest spenders are Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Iraq and Algeria. 

Japan prepares to enter arms market -

Keenly aware of the trouble that came with ambitious generals and an expanding munitions industry, the Japanese government has long banned most weapons exports. That policy helped buttress Japan’s pacifism, but it also hindered the growth of the country’s defense industry. 

U.K. carrier preps for launch in July -

Within sight of one of the crowning engineering achievements of Queen Victoria’s reign, Britain’s naval shipbuilding industry is counting down to the launch of a new aircraft carrier for the Royal Navy named after the current monarch, Queen Elizabeth.

A400M: The horror, the horror -

Multinational defense programs in the West have become “a horror” for industry, and Airbus Group CEO Tom Enders said April 30 that he will not allow his company to repeat the experience of the beleaguered A400M in his tenure.

 

Defense:

HASC throws General Dynamics little bone On AMPV -

A House Armed Services subcommittee passed its markup of its part of the annual defense bill that would — among many other things — freeze some funding for the Army’s Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle Program. AMPV is the service’s biggest weapons program left standing after sequestration’s budget cuts, and contractor General Dynamics had protested the competition was unfair and pledged to take its case to Congress. 

LCS will miss world’s largest naval exercise -

It’s the biggest naval exercise in the world, and it happens only every other year. This summer, nearly 50 ships from at least 16 navies will gather at Pearl Harbor for the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercises, hosted by the U.S. Navy.

Navy aircraft grounded: Air boss orders ‘pause’ after latest crash -

The aviation Navy’s boss grounded all planes and squadrons except those deployed or underway May 2, labeling it an hours-long “tactical pause” that comes one day after the latest mishap, when a T-34C trainer crashed into the ocean off the coast of Texas.

U.S. Navy to equip MQ-8C UAV for electronic warfare -

The U.S. Navy plans to equip the Northrop Grumman MQ-8C Fire Scout rotary-winged unmanned aerial vehicle with an electronic warfare capability through the development of a new external pod, the Department of Defense disclosed May 1. 

V-22s, other Marine aircraft need battle networks -

When Americans were threatened during the civil war in South Sudan, Marine Corps MV-22 Ospreys flew a Marine response force from Spain to Djibouti in a non-stop flight of 3,200 nautical miles – the distance from Alaska to Florida. That’s an extraordinary feat for an aircraft that can take off and land vertically like a helicopter.

 

Viewpoint:

The Comanche and the Albatross -

At the heart of any JSF discussion lies the belief that the program cannot be cancelled – that any attempt is doomed to failure because of the spread of the program structure in the United States and internationally. Despite any great unwillingness to end the program, doing so is certainly not impossible. Clearly, the army’s experience with the Comanche is instructive.




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Headlines January 30, 2015

News: Taliban claims responsibility for attack on Americans at military base near airport - The Taliban claimed responsibility Jan. 30 for a shooting incident at a military base attached to Kabul’s international airport yesterday that killed three American civilian contractors and an Afghan national, saying the attacker had infiltrated the ranks of the security forces. Commission...
 
 

News Briefs January 30, 2015

Military judge weighs restrictions on Gitmo female guards A military judge is deciding whether to continue restricting the use of female guards at Guantanamo. Navy Capt. J. Kirk Waits heard closing arguments Jan. 29 at the base in Cuba during a pretrial hearing for Abd al-Hadi al-Iraqi. Waits didn’t say when he will rule. Hadi...
 
 

Headlines January 28, 2015

News: Panel will propose new military retirement system - The long-awaited report on military compensation set to drop Thursday will propose fundamental changes to military retirement and health care benefits, according to several people familiar with the report. Source: DOD to request $585 billion for fiscal 2016 - The Department of Defense is preparing to submit a...
 

 

News Briefs January 28, 2015

Defense contractor to pay $2 million to settle claims A Northern California defense contractor will pay the federal government $2 million to settle claims about its manufacturing of parts for remote-controlled aircraft. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Sacramento says Sacramento-based Composite Engineering Inc. agreed to pay the money to end allegations that it artificially inflated...
 
 

Headlines January 26, 2015

News: Two Marines identified in deadly California helo crash - Two Marine Corps officers killed when their helicopter crashed during a training exercise in the Southern California desert were remembered Jan. 25 as talented pilots. Greek F-16 crashes in Spain during NATO exercise - Ten people died Jan. 26 after a Greek air force F-16 jet crashed...
 
 

News Briefs January 26, 2015

Navy wants to increase use of sonar-emitting buoys The U.S. Navy is seeking permits to expand sonar and other training exercises off the Pacific Coast, a proposal raising concerns from animal advocates who say that more sonar-emitting buoys would harm whales. The Navy now wants to deploy up to 720 sonobuoys about 12 miles off...
 




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