Headlines – January 18, 2016


Air Force to Delay A-10 Retirement, Thanks to ISIS –
After trying to retire the battle-tested Warthog for the past two years, Air Force officials concede that the plane is key to the war on ISIS.


General Electric to move headquarters to Boston –
GE set to get up to $145 million in incentives to leave Fairfield, Conn., its home since 1974.
France launches Aster upgrade –
France has signed a contract for the Aster Block 1 New Technology program, launching an expected upgrade of the Aster surface-to-air missile, expanding its intercept range, the French procurement office said.
Afghanistan to receive 12 new attack helicopters –
Kabul has ordered 12 more MD530F Cayuse Warrior light attack helicopters for the 2016 fighting season.
Boeing tapped for P-8A upgrade as AAS, Harpoon move forward –
Boeing will receive a work package from the U.S. Navy to design and incorporate “Increment 3 Block 2” improvements into the P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft, according to a contracting announcement released Jan. 11.
Amphibious transport docks could host missile defense systems –
Huntington Ingalls Industries is in discussions with defense officials about potentially putting missile defense radars and laser weapons on San Antonio-class amphibious transport docks, a company executive said Jan. 13.
Germany begins negotiations with Israel on leasing Heron TP –
The Bundeswehr has begun negotiations with the Israelis on leasing armed Heron TP medium-range long-endurance unmanned aerial systems to bridge the gap until it acquires a European UAS by 2025, along with France, Italy and Spain.
RFP for final LPD-17 amphib released to industry –
The Navy released its request for proposals for the last San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock (LPD-17), bringing the service one step closer to wrapping up the ship class and transitioning into a follow-on LX(R) program.
GE to cut 6,500 jobs in Europe –
But the company must create 1,000 net new jobs in France, French government says.
Russia to activate three new ballistic missile warning radars by end of 2016 –
Russia is to activate three more of its ‘Voronezh’-series long-range early warning radar systems in 2016, as it looks to fully recapitalize its ground-based ballistic missile defense network by the end of the decade, state media announced Jan. 12.
F-35 training at Luke AFB gathers pace with 34 jets –
The multinational pilot training center at Luke AFB in Arizona has grown exponentially since receiving its first Lockheed Martin F-35 in March 2014, and that pace won’t let up in 2016 as the 56th Fighter Wing zips past 3,000 Lightning II sorties.
Textron, Navy exploring in-water launch ramps for new hovercraft –
The U.S. Navy and contractor Textron Systems have discussed adding an in-water launch capability for the service’s emerging Ship-to-Shore Connector hovercraft fleet, but likely after initial production craft are delivered.
Korean Air wins RoK Army UAV contract –
Korean Air Aerospace Division, a unit of the South Korean national airline, has secured a contract from the Defense Acquisition Program Administration to manufacture a new tactical unmanned aerial vehicle system for the Republic of Korea Army, a company official confirmed to IHS Jane’s Jan. 13.


HASC chair: The military needs more money, not less –
The head of the House Armed Services Committee doesn’t think the military has enough money.
Defense outlays flat in fourth quarter 2015 –
Defense Department spending remained relatively flat in the fourth quarter of 2015 compared with a year earlier, according to data released Jan. 13 by the U.S. Treasury Department.
Army showcases two examples of driverless technology –
Google is the big name in driverless technology, but the U.S. Army has had convoys of self-driving vehicles in testing for years.
U.S. Navy sharpens stealth tactics against Russia –
The U.S. Navy in Europe is going dark.
U.S. Air Force begins receiving new B-52 ‘smart’ weapons bay launchers –
Boeing has delivered enhanced internal weapons bay launchers that enable the Boeing B-52 Stratofortress to carry satellite-guided munitions in the weapons bay for the first time, following several months of successful ground and flight testing, the company announced Jan. 13.


VA chips away at health care applications — eligibility backlog still above 500K –
Veterans Affairs officials say they are chipping away at a backlog of applications for health care, following an inspector general’s report in September that found 300,000 veterans on the eligibility waiting list were dead.
Department of Veterans Affairs opens Cape Canaveral cemetery for first burials –
The Cape Canaveral National Cemetery opened for first interments of casketed or cremated remains of eligible Veterans, spouses or dependents Jan. 13.
Connecticut man’s body to be removed from veterans’ cemetery –
The remains of a Vietnam-era Army veteran are being removed from the Connecticut state veterans’ cemetery because he was convicted of killing three people.

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