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July 21, 2014

News Briefs July 21, 2014

Corruption investigated in Kansas National Guard

The Kansas Adjutant General’s office says federal authorities are investigating possible corruption involving outside medical companies’ contracts with the Kansas Army National Guard.

Sharon Watson, spokeswoman for the adjutant general’s office, confirmed the investigation Friday to The Lawrence Journal-World but declined to release specific details. She said the investigation involves concerns of inappropriate conduct on medical contracts.

The Journal-World reports Watson’s statement was in response to questions it asked about allegations that a captain in the Guard’s Medical Detachment received gifts from Dentrust, a Pennsylvania company that performs dental screenings and treatment for Guard soldiers.

Dentrust is one of three firms that contract with the Guard for those services. In federal fiscal years 2012-2013, it received more than $585,000 under those contracts. AP

EPA orders Army to clean up Louisiana explosives

Federal environmental officials have overruled the U.S. Army’s attempt to decline responsibility for explosive materials stored at a northwest Louisiana site.

The Environmental Protection Agency had ordered the Army to take charge of the improperly stored artillery propellant in March, but the Army appealed, saying it shouldn’t have to clean up the 15 million pounds of M6 propellant that it shipped to Explo Systems at Camp Minden, a Louisiana National Guard installation.

The EPA rejected the appeal July 16, writing that the Army was responsible because it shouldn’t have trusted that Explo could handle so much M6.

An investigator discovered the propellant after a 2012 explosion.

The EPA says three private owners – General Dynamics Corp., Alliant Techsystems and Ashland Inc. unit Hercules – are cleaning up their share. AP

Oregon contractor pleads guilty to defrauding U.S. government

An Oregon defense contractor has pleaded guilty to selling $10 million worth of phony parts for attack helicopters and trucks to the U.S. government, including a locknut that secures the rotor on the Kiowa attack helicopter.

According to court records, Kustom Products Inc. owner Harold Ray Bettencourt II and four employees pleaded guilty Friday in U.S. District Court in Portland to conspiracy to defraud the United States. Sentencing is scheduled Dec. 10.

Authorities said the company lied to the Defense Department to secure 750 contracts worth $10 million. They were able to undercut bids from other companies by substituting phony parts for genuine parts, and produced phony records to cover up the substitution, the government said.
A defense attorney did not immediately respond to requests for comment. AP

Boeing procurement officer pleads guilty to fraud

A former procurement officer for Boeing in St. Louis, Mo., has pleaded guilty to federal fraud charges for his role in a bribery and kickback scheme involving military aircraft parts sold to Boeing.

Deon Anderson plead guilty July 18 in federal court to three felony counts of mail fraud, one count of wire fraud and one count of currency structuring. Sentencing is Oct. 15.

Anderson was convicted of taking bribes from companies seeking to sell parts for military aircraft to Boeing, in exchange for providing them with confidential information such as competitor bids.

Owners of two firms involved in the kickback scheme have been convicted and are awaiting sentencing. A fourth defendant is awaiting trial. AP




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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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