Monday, September 01, 2014

The INSIDER - August 25, 2014

Posted on August 25, 2014
Breaking News: Hypersonic Test 'Anomaly.'

Just posted (going beyond the press release):

Army Terminates Hypersonic Weapon Test Before Evaluating Payload

The Army Space and Missile Defense Command was unable to evaluate its Advanced Hypersonic Weapon today during a test in which a booster rocket experienced an "anomaly" after liftoff in Alaska, prompting authorities to terminate the flight.

"Shortly after 4 a.m. EDT, the U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command, as part of the Defense Department's Conventional Prompt Global Strike technology development program, conducted a flight test of the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon from the Kodiak Launch Complex in Alaska," SMDC said in a statement. "Due to an anomaly, the test was terminated near the launch pad shortly after liftoff to ensure public safety. There were no injuries to any personnel."

The Pentagon's acquisition directorate for strategic warfare is sponsoring the the Army's development of the Advanced Hypersonic Weapon, a "boost-glide" system that pairs a three-stage rocket with a cone-shaped hypersonic glide vehicle.

The termination of today's test "appears to say more about the booster than anything about the glider," said James Acton, senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment.

More to come.


Adding up what the defense committees did with the omnibus reprogramming, for the Army:

Lawmakers Deny Army's Full Request To Transfer JTRS, WIN-T Funds

Senate and House defense committees have denied part of the Army's request to move more than $133 million out of its accounts for the Joint Tactical Radio System and the Warfighter Information Network-Tactical program, according to new internal budget documents.

The documents on the Army's fiscal year 2014 omnibus reprogramming request, obtained by Inside the Army, reveal that of the $77 million the Army hoped to take from the JTRS Handheld, Manpack and Small, Form-Fit radio program, only $38 million was approved by the House Appropriations defense subcommittee. The Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee approved $74 million for reprogramming, nearly all of the service's request. . . .

The Army asserts that $77 million from the HMS program is "available due to changes to the Manpack and Rifleman Radio program's acquisition plan, going from one vendor to two vendors," states the Pentagon's July 10 omnibus reprogramming request obtained by last month.

Lawmakers Approve Army's Tactical Vehicle Reprogramming Requests

Congressional defense committees have approved Army requests to transfer more than $400 million into underfunded tactical vehicle accounts in fiscal year 2014, according to budget documents obtained by Inside the Army.

Lawmakers Approve Some Army Aviation Transfer Requests, Deny Others

Congressional defense committees have signed off on the Pentagon's move to reprogram $20 million from the Army's UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter account, as well as several other transfers that will trim millions from service aircraft programs, though some requests were denied, according to new Army budget documents.

And from Friday:

Senate Appropriators Reject $140M In Pentagon Reprogramming Requests

The Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee has rejected approximately $140 million in Pentagon reprogramming requests, according to congressional documents.

The Pentagon sent a $4.4 billion fiscal year 2014 omnibus reprogramming request to Congress in July asking to transfer $885 million into modernization efforts. All four congressional defense committees must unanimously approve Defense Department reprogramming requests or they cannot proceed.

The notable rejections from Senate appropriators include $33 million for the Air Force's Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle and $23 million for F-22 modernization, as first reported by Defense News. The service had requested a $100 million transfer into the EELV program.

For the Army, denials include $17 million from Army aircraft avionics; $13 million from the OH-58 Kiowa War Replacement Aircraft program; $7.2 million from modifications to the Kiowa; $5.3 million for the Mid-Tier Networking Vehicular Radio; and $4 million from tactical bridging.

Congress Approves $111 Million Army Request For More Lakotas In FY-14

Lawmakers have approved the Army's request to reprogram $111 million to pay for 21 additional LUH-72A Lakota light utility helicopters for the service's training fleet at Ft. Rucker, AL, according to multiple sources.

Ground Pounding.

A push for preservation:

BAE Systems Pushing Army, OSD For New Bradley Turret S&T Program

BAE Systems, which has consistently lobbied Congress in recent years to protect its production lines amid plummeting U.S. military spending on combat vehicles, is pushing for a new science and technology program aimed at preserving specialized turret work on its Bradley Fighting Vehicle.

Mark Signorelli, BAE Systems' vice president of combat vehicles, said production of the Bradley's turret at the company's facility in York, PA, is poised to end at the end of fiscal year 2015 if something is not done to sustain the current work flow.

"We've got an issue and it's time to fish or cut bait," he said in an Aug. 20 interview. "We've got no turret work coming in FY-16. A manufacturing technology program would sustain those unique capabilities."


More from today's Inside the Army:

Army Looks To Marine Corps Technology For Electronic Warfare Developments

As the Army develops a system of electronic warfare tools for brigade combat teams, the service is looking to the Marine Corps as well as industry for ways to fill capability gaps, according to those in charge of developing the Multi-Function Electronic Warfare system.

"Our most significant challenge today is alignment of current research and development investments in airborne electronic warfare payloads," Mike Ryan, deputy project manager for electronic warfare, wrote in an Aug. 22 email to Inside the Army. "The other services, in particular the Marine Corps, as well as our industry partners, are out in front of the Army in this respect."

Ryan said that the Army will focus on leveraging systems already developed and use service money to close technology gaps.

MFEW is expected to be a suite of systems that will provide electronic warfare capabilities for aerial, mounted, dismounted and fixed platforms. The Army is developing the aerial electronic attack (AEA) capability first.

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