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Air Force photograph by Ron Bradshaw Defense

First operational F-35As arrive at Hill AFB

The Air Force ushered in a new era of combat air power Sept. 2 as Hill Air Force Base, Utah, received the service’s first two operational F-35As. Hill’s active duty 388th Fighter Wing and Reserve 419th Fighter Wing will be the first combat-coded units to fly and maintain the Air Force’s newest fifth-generation fighter aircraft….

BobAlvis1 Local

High Desert Hangar Stories with Bob Alvis

Mach 1: the story has been told thousands of times of Chuck Yeager and that special day over Muroc, when the first sonic booms rattled windows. But sitting in church this morning, I looked over to a lady and her son who have a different take on that historical achievement. Dorothy Roth’s husband and John’s…

Lockheed Martin photograph by David Henry Local

U-2 celebrating 60 years

Lockheed Martin is celebrating 60 years of the U-2 program with festivities planned throughout the company. “It’s not a 60-year old aircraft, it is a 60-year old program that is still going strong,” said Melani Austin, U-2 Program Director at Skunk Works, Palmdale, Calif., during a recent press tour. “We have people that have started…

ULAlaunch Space

United Launch Alliance successfully launches U.S. Navy’s MUOS-4

A United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket carrying the fourth Mobile User Objective System satellite for the U.S. Navy launched from Space Launch Complex-41 at 6:18 a.m., EDT, Sept. 2 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Fla. The MUOS-4 spacecraft will bring advanced, new, global communications capabilities to mobile military forces, as well as ensure…

Courtesy photograph Defense

F-22 inaugural deployment to Europe

Four F-22 Raptors, one C-17 Globemaster III, and approximately 60 airmen arrived at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, to train with allied air forces and U.S. services through mid-September.


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Space

SpaceX Grasshopper test

Posted  November 16, 2012

On Nov. 1, 2012, SpaceX’s Grasshopper – a 10-story vertical takeoff and landing vehicle – lifted nearly two stories in an 8-second duration test hop. The rocket rose 17.7 feet, hovered, and touched back down safely on the pad at SpaceX’s rocket development facility in McGregor, Texas. Grasshopper consists of a Falcon 9 rocket first…

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Moss Point, Miss., marks production of drone fuselage

Posted  November 16, 2012

Production has begun at a Northrop Grumman plant in Moss Point, Miss., on fuselages for a new line of surveillance drones. Officials marked the development with a Nov. 13 ceremony at Northrop’s Unmanned Systems Center. The Triton high-altitude surveillance drone being built for the Navy will be able to stay aloft for 24 hours, flying…

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Local

A raft and a prayer

Posted  November 16, 2012

A typhoon named “Ida” took a crew of 31 sailors by surprise and sent their ship to the bottom of the ocean. This was the story of Bill Harrison in 1945 shortly after the conclusion of World War II. In honor of Veterans Day, Harrison was invited to share his story at a special “Salute…

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Students conduct live conversations with orbiting NASA astronauts

Posted  November 16, 2012

More than 9,500 student participants from the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program took part in a live video downlink with International Space Station Expedition 33 Commander Sunita Williams and Flight Engineer Kevin Ford. The long-distance conversation took place Nov. 15 at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington. The event was co-hosted with the…

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Boeing adapts innovative training technologies to F/A-18E, F-15E

Posted  November 16, 2012

Two military aircraft produced by Boeing – the F-15E Eagle and the F/A-18E Super Hornet – now are equipped to train in an environment that puts them at odds against real aircraft and computer-generated enemy threats at the same time. Under a $6.3 million, three-year contract with the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, Boeing is…

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NASA’s Kepler completes prime mission,begins extended mission

Posted  November 16, 2012

NASA is marking two milestones in the search for planets like Earth; the successful completion of the Kepler Space Telescope’s 3 1/2- year prime mission and the beginning of an extended mission that could last as long as four years. Scientists have used Kepler data to identify more than 2,300 planet candidates and confirm more…

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Defense

U.S., Thai leaders move defense alliance into 21st century

Posted  November 16, 2012

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta and Thai Defense Minister Sukampol Suwannathat affirmed their nations’ long-term military partnership in Bangkok Nov. 15, updating a vision for the alliance whose most recent statement, in 1962, focused on fighting communism. Before attending the signing ceremony on the manicured grounds of the Ministry of Defense, Sukampol accompanied Panetta as…

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Business

Patriot performs flawlessly in Japan test firings

Posted  November 16, 2012

The Japan Air Self-Defense Force continued its track record of successfully test firing Raytheon’s Patriot Air and Missile Defense System during its annual training exercise at McGregor Range, N.M. The exercise included target engagement and firings of Patriot in stressing tactical mission scenarios. “The results of this annual exercise speak to the operational readiness of…

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GOP senator outlines $68 billion in defense cuts

Posted  November 16, 2012

Defense spending could be slashed by $68 billion over 10 years if the military stopped spending millions on running grocery stores, operating its own schools and even developing a roll-up version of beef jerky, insists one of the Senate’s leading fiscal conservatives. In a new report, Republican Sen. Tom Coburn dubs the Pentagon the “Department…

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Boeing 737 MAX achieves ‘firm concept’

Posted  November 16, 2012

Boeing has finished defining in broad terms its newest single-aisle airplane, the 737 MAX, recently completing a major milestone in development known as ‘Firm Concept’. “The program has achieved this development milestone by defining the significant changes needed to deliver the performance we’ve committed to our customers,” said Beverly Wyse, vice president and general manager…

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