In the news...

August 5, 2014

Headlines August 4, 2014

News:

Senate authorizes 1K more Afghan visas -

Senate Aug. 1 passed legislation that would grant 1,000 more visas to Afghan civilians who assisted the United States.

 

Business:

Blurred lines: Commercial, defense sectors begin to blend -

As companies continue to turn their eyes toward the Middle East and Asia for new business, a trend has emerged: The lines between commercial and defense businesses are increasingly blurring.

U.S. Army’s JMR helo selection slips -

The initial down-select for the technology demonstrator phase of the U.S. Army’s ambitious Joint Multi-Role helicopter program has missed its original July deadline, and Army officials are now saying they’ll inform industry teams about who is moving forward sometime this month.

BAE wins contract for Map of the World -

BAE has been awarded a $335 million contract to support the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s Map of the World project.

 

Defense:

Air Force Academy to probe reports of rape, drug use -

The U.S. Air Force Academy’s superintendent ordered an investigation into the school’s athletic programs Aug. 3 amid reports of sexual assaults, drug use and academic cheating, primarily among football players at the elite institution.

Additional Army cuts rattle Pentagon -

The Army plans to notify about 500 majors over the next month that they must leave the military service as part of an eye-popping Pentagon plan to shrink the number of active duty soldiers from about 513,000 to 490,000 by 2015.

Amid squabbling, a glimmer of hope on Senate defense bill -

U.S. lawmakers spent the days before a five-week legislative break trading barbs and moving bills with little chance of becoming law. But just before they departed, the U.S. defense sector received a glimmer of hope.

Lawmaker wants trial program for deaf to serve in Air Force -

A lawmaker who advocates for the deaf is calling for a trial program that would allow a small number of hearing impaired to serve in the Air Force.

 

Space:

Rosetta’s best view yet -

The arrival of ESA’s Rosetta spacecraft at its comet target is tantalizingly close, with arrival set to take place Aug. 6.

Probe set for historic rendezvous -

After a 10-year, 4-billion-mile journey through deep space, a European probe will finally arrive at its comet destination this week.

 

International:

U.S. recon plane crossed into Swedish airspace to avoid Russians -

A U.S. reconnaissance plane crossed into Swedish airspace last month as it sought to avoid being intercepted by Russian Fighters, the New York Times reported Aug. 3, citing U.S. military officials.

Pentagon wants extra $19 million to equip, train Ukrainian troops -

The Pentagon has notified Congress of a plan to increase the amount of money that it is spending on bolstering the defense capabilities of the Ukrainian military, with the majority of that funding going toward equipping and training its national guard troops to conduct various missions.

China: PLA’s next generation long-range ballistic missile is here -

China has confirmed that it now possesses an upgraded version of its DF-5A intercontinental ballistic missile, which has been in existence since 1971. It had previously denied that the Dongfeng-41 (DF-41), which has a range of 7,500 miles existed.

Sunk costs: New carriers commit U.K. to buy escorts, F-35Bs, says 1st Sea Lord -

65,000-ton ships are hard to turn around, and they can drag a lot else in their wake. That’s the $10.4 billion bet the Royal Navy has placed on its controversial program to build two new aircraft carriers.

Russia sanctions: India defiant, Finland nervous -

In the days following U.S. and European Union sanctions against Russia, it was unclear what sort of economic impact they would have on nations that do defense deals with Moscow.

Zelenodolsk building modular patrol ships for the Russian Navy -

Tatarstan’s Zelenodolsk Shipyard laid down the second Project 22160 patrol ship – Dmitry Rogachev – for the Russian Navy July 25y. The keel of first-in-class Vasily Bykov was laid on 26 February.

Interest rises in EU acquisition of Mistrals sold to Russia -

The idea that the European Union – not Russia – would acquire two French Mistral-class helicopter carriers already sold to Moscow is gaining ground as the West adopted a ban against future arms deals to Russia, and the energy and financial sectors, analysts said.

Brazilian company Flight Tech claims country’s first UAV export deal -

The UAV market remains dominated by the U.S. and Israeli defense contractors, but other nations have been heavily investing in the technology especially for more cost-effective, less technologically advanced solutions.

South America’s growing interest in Antarctica drives polar ship buys -

Colombia is set to join its South American neighbors in their plans to upgrade Antarctic assets and establishments, which are opening bases and buying polar ships.

Replacing Canada’s failing CC-130s: 17 C-130Js -

An C$32.5 million amendment to the CC-130J Operational Training Systems Provider contract is signed to align the CC-130J training system with ongoing upgrades to the aircraft themselves.

Canada expands frigate upgrade plans -

Canada is opening a second market for companies to upgrade its frigates, with new plans to buy additional systems and equipment for the ships over the next seven years.




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News Briefs February 27, 2015

Ukraine will start pulling back heavy weapons in the east Ukraine’s military says it will start pulling back its heavy weapons from the front line with Russian-backed separatists as required under a cease-fire agreement. The Defense Ministry said in a statement Feb. 26 that it reserved the right to revise its withdrawal plans in the...
 
 

Northrop Grumman’s AstroMesh reflector successfully deploys for NASA’s SMAP satellite

The NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory successfully deployed the mesh reflector and boom aboard the Soil Moisture Active Passive spacecraft, a key milestone on its mission to provide global measurements of soil moisture. Launched Jan. 31, SMAP represents the future of Earth Science by helping researchers better understand our planet. SMAP’s unmatched data capabilities are enabled...
 
 
NASA photograph by Brian Tietz

NASA offers space tech grants to early career university faculty

NASA photograph by Brian Tietz Tensegrity research is able to simulate multiple forms of locomotion. In this image, a prototype tensegrity robot reproduces forward crawling motion. NASA’s Space Technology Mission Director...
 

 
navy-china

USS Fort Worth conducts CUES with Chinese Navy

The littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) practiced the Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea (CUES) with the People’s Liberation Army-Navy Jiangkai II frigate Hengshui (FFG 572) Feb. 23 enhancing the professional ma...
 
 

AEGIS tracks, simulates engagement of three short-range ballistic missiles

The Missile Defense Agency and sailors aboard the guided-missile destroyers USS Carney (DDG 64), USS Gonzalez (DDG 66), and USS Barry (DDG 52) successfully completed a flight test involving the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense weapon system. At approximately 2:30 a.m., EST, Feb. 26, three short-range ballistic missile targets were launched near simultaneously from NASA’s Wallops...
 
 

DOD seeks novel ideas to shape its technological future

The Defense Department is seeking novel ideas to shape its future, and officials are looking to industry, small business, academia, start-ups, the public – anyone, really – to boost its ability to prevail against adversaries whose access to technology grows daily. The program, called the Long-Range Research and Development Plan, or LRRDP, began with an...
 




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