In the news...

August 6, 2014

Headlines August 6, 2014

News:

Victim of Afghanistan insider attack identified as Maj. Gen. Harold Greene -

The first American general officer to be killed by hostile fire in combat since Sept. 11 has been identified as Maj. Gen. Harold Greene.

Billionaire Elon Musk chooses south Texas for SpaceX Launchpad -

Billionaire Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp. plans to build the world’s first commercial Launchpad near Brownsville in south Texas, Gov. Rick Perry’s office said.

 

Business:

Crunch time for UCLASS: USD Kendall, Rep. Forbes, and the requirements fight -

August is the month of decision for UCLASS, the Navy’s controversial program to build armed drones that fly off aircraft carriers.

SPAWAR picks Serco for C4ISR contract -

The Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Command has chosen Serco for a contract to provide support and maintenance on Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected vehicles. The one-year contract is worth $9 million.

2014 marked by array of new cyber threats, Cisco report says -

A mid-year report on the state of cyber security warns of new, insidious ways hackers are gaining access to corporate and private computers.

Russia orders Ka-52K helicopters for Mistral-class LHDs -

Russia has ordered a batch of Kamov Ka-52K ‘Hokum B’ naval attack helicopters for the Russian Navy’s Mistral-class landing helicopter dock vessels.

Spain embargoes arms sales to Israel -

The Spanish government announced an arms embargo on Israel, El Pais quoted government sources as saying. The decision was made the previous week by a committee of the Presidency, Treasury, Economy Ministry, Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry.

Sweden orders H-60M helicopters for Afghan CSAR/MEDEVAC -

Sweden’s FMV signs a specific support agreement with Finland’s Patria Oyj, for maintenance of their “HKP16? Black Hawks in Linkoping, Sweden. The base period is 2015-2017, but options could extend it to 2020. Cost is SEK 225 million / EUR 24.3 million / $33 million, including options.

Indian MoD lifts blacklisting of Rolls-Royce -

India’s Ministry of Defence decided in late July against blacklisting Rolls-Royce, which has been under federal investigation since late February for employing proscribed agents to secure Indian contracts, official and industry sources have disclosed.

The U.K.’s Watchkeeper ISTAR UAV -

The U.K. government responds to the Commons Defence committee’s RPAS report. There’s no decision yet re: Afghan deployment, but there are some lessons learned per the Committee’s request.

 

Defense:

Kendall wants acquisition reserve account, but doesn’t plan to get it -

The U.S. Defense Department’s top procurement official would like Congress to create a reserve spending account that the Pentagon could tap when a weapons program runs into costly development issues.

Senate, House panels hold up proposed EELV funds -

A Senate committee is holding up a plan to shift $100 million to an Air Force space-launch program, telling the service to devise a plan for a new liquid rocket engine.

Next-generation fighter, directed energy weapons may converge -

Eyeing emerging threats amid a constrained budget environment, and consumed by the Lockheed Martin F-35’s high cost, the U.S. Air Force is already studying what the “sixth-generation” of air dominance capability for the service should be.

Air Force works to extend life of C-130 fleet -

The U.S. Air Force is working to extend the service life of its fleet of C-130 combat delivery aircraft by replacing center wing boxes on some of the planes and adding new avionics, electronics and instrumentation, service officials told Military.com.

 

Veterans:

Veterans group: Making VA reform work is real test -

Passage of a bill reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs is beginning to look like the easy part, veterans groups say, adding that what may be “pretty rough” is meeting looming deadlines to ensure the new law’s key element – a private health care option – is working.

Pro-troop charity misleads donors while lining political consultants’ pockets -

Move America Forward has collected millions to send care packages to U.S. troops. But its appeals often rely on images and stories borrowed without permission, and its assets have been used to benefit political consulting firms and PACs.

VA secretary calls for town hall meetings -

New Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald has ordered town hall meetings at all department health and benefits facilities by the end of September, in an effort to better understand veterans’ complaints about services.

VA reform bill preserves employee bonuses -

Despite public outrage over dysfunctional and dangerously run hospitals, a landmark VA reform bill set to be signed July 31 by President Barack Obama will retain some department perks: Hefty bonuses for executives and other employees.

 

Space:

Rosetta has arrived! -

After 10 years and four billion miles, Rosetta has finally caught up with its comet following a series of spectacular maneuvers.

Could the moon fuel Earth for 10,000 years? -

The lunar dirt brought back by mankind’s first moonwalkers contained an abundance of titanium, platinum and other valuable minerals.

 

Technology:

Forget cloaks, this invisibility bottle bends sound waves to hide objects -

Sound waves may not appear to hold much power, but scientists believe directing them in the right way could allow them to hide objects and even levitate them in the air.




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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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