Thursday, November 27, 2014
News on the F-22, Joint Strike Fighter, the future tanker and more aircraft programs
Inside the Navy - 12/01/2014

The Marine Corps plans to have its MV-22 Osprey capable of refueling the next-generation Joint Strike Fighter in mid-air during the summer of 2017, according to a service spokesman.

DefenseAlert - 11/25/2014

The Japanese Ministry of Defense has announced the selection of Northrop Grumman's E-2D Advanced Hawkeye and RQ-4B Global Hawk to meet its military modernization requirements. The country has also decided to procure the Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey.

DefenseAlert - 11/24/2014

The British government remains "on target" for achieving F-35 operational capability from land bases in 2018 with the signing of a contract for four B-variant combat jets, the country's chief of defence materiel, Bernard Gray, confirmed in a Nov. 24 statement.

DefenseAlert - 11/21/2014

The Defense Department has awarded F-35 prime contractor Lockheed Martin its eighth low-rate initial production contract, valued at $4.7 billion for 43 airframes, according to a Nov. 21 press release from the joint program office.

Inside the Navy - 11/24/2014

The first official class of Joint Strike Fighter transition pilots is in session at a Marine Corps base in South Carolina where the students will be able to perform short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing operations more easily than at their previous Air Force training base in Florida, according to Marine Corps officials.

Inside the Navy - 11/24/2014

NORFOLK, VA -- The amphibious ship the Marine Corps will use for Joint Strike Fighter shipboard operational testing will come out of maintenance "shortly" and testing will be begin in May, according to a Navy official.

Inside the Air Force - 11/21/2014

LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, VA -- To meet the growing demand for intelligence data related to operations in Iraq and Syria, the 480th Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Wing here has been improving its ability to fuze data from multiple sources -- to include data from in-theater aircraft.

Inside the Navy - 11/17/2014

The F-35 Joint Program Office intends to issue Lockheed Martin up to six orders totaling about $15 million for support studies on topics such as software development and weapons integration, according to a Federal Business Opportunities notice.

Inside the Air Force - 11/14/2014

Boeing is moving aggressively to secure selection to build the next presidential aircraft after almost 30 years of supporting the Air Force's two VC-35As, better known as Air Force One, and has put together an undisclosed industry team ahead of a possible request for proposals release this month.

Inside the Air Force - 11/14/2014

The program manager overseeing the E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System recapitalization effort has said any future aircraft must have a modular, open system architecture design with non-proprietary interfaces to ensure future competition.

DefenseAlert - 11/13/2014

Republican leaders on the House and Senate Armed Services committees said this week they do not support the Air Force's recent proposal to retire 72 A-10s in fiscal year 2015 instead of the 110 proposed in its FY-15 budget request sent to Congress earlier this year.

Inside the Pentagon - 11/13/2014

The Pentagon's advanced research arm is seeking help from industry and research labs to determine the feasibility and value of having large aircraft launch and recover a number of small unmanned aircraft systems.

DefenseAlert - 11/11/2014

The Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory is looking to industry for vehicles capable of being transported in military aircraft.

DefenseAlert - 11/11/2014

After months of uncertainty, the U.S. government has decided to temporarily base Iraq's first three F-16 fighter jets in Tucson, AZ, to support the pilot training mission there.

DefenseAlert - 11/10/2014

The Air Force is floating to lawmakers a compromise proposal to retire 72 A-10s in fiscal year 2015 -- a move that would allow the service to shift some Warthog personnel to support the F-35A's 2016 initial operational capability requirement for 1,100 maintainers.

Inside the Navy - 11/10/2014

Future request for proposals issued by Naval Air Systems Command will include requirements for open system architectures, according to the NAVAIR commander.

DefenseAlert - 11/07/2014

The Air Force has shifted the initial operational capability date for its E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System recapitalization effort from fiscal year 2022 to FY-23 ahead of an anticipated materiel development decision in January 2015.

Inside the Air Force - 11/07/2014

Among the options the Air Force is considering to meet its 2016 initial operational capability target for the F-35A is an adjustment to the IOC requirement for qualified maintainers, the chief of the Air Staff said this week.

Inside the Air Force - 11/07/2014

As part of its work to gain momentum in the Afghanistan retrograde effort, Air Mobility Command has called on its newly modernized heavy lifter, the C-5M Super Galaxy, to assist in drawdown operations.

DefenseAlert - 11/04/2014

Although the Afghan Air Force has shown an ability to perform in key mission areas such as light airlift and human remains recovery, its resources are limited and it still relies heavily on coalition airpower for aerial fire support, according to a Defense Department report published in late October.

Inside the Navy - 11/03/2014

The Pentagon's most expensive acquisition program, the Joint Strike Fighter, will be impacted by the continuing resolution passed by Congress in September because the program cannot begin follow-on development, according to the program's top official.

Inside the Navy - 11/03/2014

The F-35C Joint Strike Fighter sea trials aboard an aircraft carrier are on track to test two jets this month, and the government will test the aircraft's full flight envelope, according to a top official.

DefenseAlert - 10/31/2014

The F-35 joint program office expects to have fielded a near-term engine fix on its 19 test aircraft by the end of December.

Inside the Air Force - 10/31/2014

The Air Force is working to have a more proactive and routine developmental planning process that shapes acquisition programs early in the science and technology phase, the service's top acquisition official said this week.

Inside the Air Force - 10/31/2014

The Air Force is making progress on owning more of the technical baseline for its top acquisition program, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, the service's acquisition executive said this week.

DefenseAlert - 10/30/2014

Three specific factors will make it "really, really hard" for the Marine Corps to meet its July 2015 target date for declaring its Joint Strike Fighter aircraft operational, the F-35 joint program executive officer told reporters Oct. 30.

DefenseAlert - 10/30/2014

The Marine Corps wants to increase F-35B production from 20 to 24 aircraft per year, according to the service's 2015 aviation plan.

DefenseAlert - 10/30/2014

The Air Force's target to meet initial operational capability on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter by August 2016 could slip if the experienced A-10 maintainers slated to shift to the fifth-generation platform are forced by Congress to stay put.

DefenseAlert - 10/30/2014

The Pentagon has awarded a $1.05 billion production contract to Pratt & Whitney after reaching an agreement for the eighth lot of F135 engines for the Joint Strike Fighter, according to a top official.

DefenseAlert - 10/30/2014

The Pentagon's acquisition executive, who has repeatedly voiced concerns about future U.S. military technological superiority, has directed four new assessments of capability areas the Defense Department must not cede to competitors -- directing separate task forces to assess air dominance, next-generation unmanned undersea systems, cyber defense and cyber deterrence.

DefenseAlert - 10/29/2014

The Pentagon recently purchased retrofit modification kits for the Marine Corps F-35 variant that are critical to the service declaring its jets operational in July 2015, according to a program spokesman.

DefenseAlert - 10/28/2014

Northrop Grumman is pitching its new digitized, integrated avionics suite to the Navy for use on both rotary and fixed-wing platforms, according to company officials.

DefenseAlert - 10/27/2014

Lockheed Martin and the F-35 Joint Program Office have reached an agreement on the next lot of F-35 aircraft, the JPO announced on Monday, noting that the average unit price for all three variants of the airframe would be approximately 3.6 percent lower than the previous contract.

Inside the Army - 10/27/2014

Despite an equipment drawdown underway in Afghanistan, the Army is beefing up funding for several aerial systems used to counter improvised explosive devices.

Inside the Air Force - 10/24/2014

As the Air Force moves toward transitioning its vision for a next-generation airlifter from early developmental planning into the requirements-setting phase, its next moves are highly dependent on the direction the Army takes in pursuing a next-generation ground vehicle, according to an Air Mobility Command requirements official.

Inside the Air Force - 10/24/2014

As the battle against Islamic extremists in Iraq continues, the U.S. Air Force is considering a new program to provide instructor pilot training for King Air 350 operators from the Iraqi Air Force.

Inside the Air Force - 10/24/2014

On the heels of announcing early plans to consider a radar replacement program for the B-52 bomber, Air Force Global Strike Command recently initiated a second capabilities study that will explore options for replacing the legacy bomber's 60-year-old engine.

Inside the Air Force - 10/24/2014

In the high-stakes game of strategic deterrence, the Air Force's Cold War-era B-52 Stratofortress and its arsenal of standoff cruise missiles continue to be the go-to systems for shows of force against potential adversaries.

Inside the Air Force - 10/24/2014

The future of a costly C-130 avionics upgrade program remains unclear amid mismatched congressional and Air Force priorities. In the meantime, the service says it needs to begin the process of upgrading the airlifters as soon as possible to assure the majority of the fleet is in compliance with Federal Aviation Administration guidelines set to take effect at the end of the decade.

DefenseAlert - 10/23/2014

The Air Force is launching high-priority, new-start modernization programs this fall after winning approval from Congress to begin a sixth-generation fighter aircraft program and the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System replacement effort with fiscal year 2014 funds, sidestepping a statutory ban on new projects mandated by the stopgap spending bill funding the government through Dec. 11.

Inside the Navy - 10/20/2014

Marine Operational Test and Evaluation Squadron-22 recently received its first Joint Strike Fighter, making it the first fixed-wing aircraft in the squadron's inventory. The service anticipates the second F-35 delivery in November, according to a service spokesman.

DefenseAlert - 10/17/2014

Lawmakers have rejected dozens of Pentagon-proposed changes to reallocate prior-year funds, forcing the U.S. military to scrap plans to immediately shift nearly $600 million between programs -- including the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and Ground-based Midcourse Defense efforts -- while protecting funds for key Army radio and helicopter modernization projects.

Inside the Air Force - 10/17/2014

The Pentagon has equipped the Afghan Air Force with its third refurbished C-130H and is considering whether to send a fourth despite concerns about the fledgling force's capacity to receive and fully utilize those aircraft.

Inside the Air Force - 10/17/2014

After achieving initial operational capability early this year on the modernized and re-engined C-5M, the Air Force is transitioning into sustainment mode and may be looking for contractors to supplement its plans to perform most of the aircraft's long-term maintenance in-house.

DefenseAlert - 10/16/2014

NAVAL STATION NORFOLK, VA -- The Navy recently declared the E-2D Advanced Hawkeye operational and plans to replace legacy aircraft in each squadron by 2027, according to a service official.

DefenseAlert - 10/15/2014

A joint team investigating an engine fire onboard an Air Force Joint Strike Fighter this summer has validated the root cause of the incident and briefed its findings Oct. 10, according to a spokesman from the F-35 joint program office.

DefenseAlert - 10/14/2014

An accident investigation board looking into the root cause of an engine fire on an Air Force F-35 fighter jet this summer has not yet returned its findings, according to an executive from engine-maker Pratt & Whitney.

Inside the Navy - 10/13/2014

The Marine Corps faces an electronic warfare gap around 2020 because the service is not replacing the EA-6B Prowler aircraft, which will retire in about five to six years, according to a service official.

Inside the Air Force - 10/10/2014

Air Combat Command has commissioned a study to determine what type of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft the Air Force will need 10 to 15 years from now, and the prevailing view is the new aircraft will be multirole, having both surveillance and strike capabilities.

Inside the Air Force - 10/10/2014

The head of Air Force Global Strike Command said this week that he is actively looking for ways to fund a B-52 engine replacement program to help keep the aging bomber flying through 2040 and perhaps beyond.