Headlines – March 9, 2016



Navy, Air Force launch helicopter rescue mission for downed plane in Iraq –
Navy helicopters carrying Air Force para-rescuemen carried out a combat search and rescue mission for an Army reconnaissance plane that made a hard emergency landing in Iraq March 5, securing the site and providing some medical aid to those involved, the Navy’s top admiral said March 8.


UAE to buy eight Italian-made drones for €316 million –
The UAE agreed to a €316 million contract to purchase eight Piaggio P.1HH Hammerhead unmanned aerial vehicles, the General Headquarters of the United Arab Emirates Armed Force March 8.
U.S. general backs fighter sales to three Gulf states –
The head of U.S. Central Command Gen. Lloyd Austin has declared his support for the sale of American fighter jets to Qatar, Kuwait and Bahrain.
U.S. explores off-axis laser detection technology to enhance ship protection –
The U.S. Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare System Center Pacific Atmospheric Propagation Branch is maturing technologies and techniques supporting a new ‘off-axis’ laser detection capability offering the ability to detect indirect laser illumination.
Boeing readies for faster KC-46 tanker testing –
Boeing expects the pace of testing KC-46A mission systems, exterior lighting and ultimately aerial refueling to accelerate with the completion of the baseline airworthiness testing of the second functional tanker scheduled for March 8.
Boeing sees new RD-180 replacement engine ready by 2019 –
A U.S.-designed replacement for the Russian-made RD-180 rocket engine can be delivered for certification tests by the end of the decade, the president of Boeing’s network and space systems division said March 8.
AHRLAC to get Boeing mission system –
Boeing is to develop the mission system for the Paramount Group’s Advanced High-Performance Reconnaissance Light Aircraft, it was announced March 7.
Fresh details of Saab’s GlobalEye surveillance aircraft emerge –
Additional details have emerged of Saab’s GlobalEye multirole surveillance aircraft concept launched at the Singapore Airshow 2016 in early February.
Satcom Direct buys U.S. government satellite business from Airbus –
Satcom Direct Communications has completed its purchase of Airbus DS SatCom Government, the company announced March 8. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Polish MoD: Rheinmetall, BAE, PGZ To bid in anti-aircraft tender –
The Polish Ministry of Defense has obtained three offers from manufacturers interested in bidding in the country’s planned anti-aircraft system tender.
Finnish tactical radios to receive $3.1 million upgrade –
Finnish firm Bittium has been awarded a contract to upgrade tactical radios to the Finnish military.
Poland takes another look at MEADS –
The Polish Ministry of National Defense has resumed talks with the Lockheed Martin-led Medium Extended Air Defense System consortium for a potential solution for WISLA — the top tier element of the estimated USD8.4 billion Shield of Poland (Tarcza Polski) layered air-defense acquisition program.
UMEX 2016: KUS-FT set for late 2016 delivery –
Korean Air is to commence deliveries of its KUS-FT tactical unmanned aircraft system to the Republic of Korea Army and Marines later this year, IHS Jane’s has learned.
UMEX 2016: Vestel’s Karayel goes operational –
Vestel’s Karayel unmanned aircraft system has commenced operations in an undisclosed area of Turkey, IHS Jane’s has learned.
RAAF KC-30 to begin P-8A refueling trials in early 2017 –
The Royal Australian Air Force is preparing to add the Boeing P-8A Poseidon to the growing list of aircraft that can be refueled by its Airbus KC-30A multirole tanker type.
MUSCLE AUV upgraded with new field-swappable storage unit –
NATO’s Center for Maritime Research and Experimentation in La Spezia has completed the upgrade of its MUSCLE (Minehunting UUV for Shallow water Covert Littoral Expeditions) autonomous underwater vehicle with a new field-swappable underwater storage unit based on single board computers developed by SECO s.r.l. in Italy.
Taurus Systems set to deliver KEPD 350Ks to ROKAF –
Deliveries of the Taurus KEPD 350K air-launched stand-off cruise missile for integration on Republic of Korea Air Force F-15K aircraft will begin this year, Taurus Systems GmbH officials have confirmed to IHS Jane’s.


Senator blasts military pay plan, retirement changes –
The Senate’s top military personnel lawmaker blasted next year’s service member pay raise and the proposed changes to military retirement as “shortchanging” troops instead of rewarding their sacrifice.
McCain hammers Air Force on bomber cost secrecy –
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., is taking a new tack in his crusade against the Air Force’s B-21, slamming the service’s decision to keep the new bomber’s cost under wraps.
U.S. voters favor cutting carrier, F-35, overall defense spending –
A majority of Americans favor cutting the U.S. defense budget in five out of seven key areas, including nuclear weapons and missile defense, according to a new University of Maryland survey released March 9.
Classified Pentagon programs will cost $68 billion in 2017 –
The Pentagon’s “black budget” — the money spent on programs and activities that are unacknowledged in nonclassified documents-amounts to around $68 billion in fiscal 2017, according to an Aviation Week analysis.
Raptor’s new claws: The F-22 is more lethal than ever –
At long last, the United States Air Force has started to field the AIM-9X Sidewinder high off-boresight missile onboard the stealthy Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor.
In step to keep JLENS alive, Army asks Congress for more money –
The Army has asked Congress to let it spend another $27.2 million to keep the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor system’s three-year operational exercise on track.
Navy finds urgency in staving off sub shortfall –
A spike in demand for the Navy’s attacks submarines, just ahead of a spate of decommissionings and a dip in new SSN construction, is leading the Navy to look at some previously unthinkable measures to mitigate the upcoming shortfall in the fleet.
Navy successfully completes first live fire test of SeaRAM from destroyer –
The Navy successfully launched the Raytheon SeaRAM Anti-Ship Missile Defense System from an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer for the first time ever March 4, a final step in rapidly fielding a self-defense capability on the Mediterranean-based USS Porter (DDG-78) through an unconventional acquisition process.


VA gives deadline to veterans who have applied for health care –
The Veterans Affairs Department has figured out how to fix a backlog of health care applications that dates back at least four years: Enforce a law requiring veterans to furnish the necessary paperwork, or the applications will be closed.


Private space company Blue Origin expects it will launch its first human test flights into space in 2017 –
Private space company Blue Origin expects it will launch its first human test flights into space in 2017.