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Daily News

February 17, 2017

As the Army continues its efforts to refine the Multi-Domain Battle concept, the push is on to become more "agile [and] adaptive" in operations.

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The Navy is beginning to assess what would replace the Trident II D5 fleet ballistic missile because the Columbia-class submarine will outlast the munition, according to the service.

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Boeing officials plied President Trump's staff with literature on a newly rebranded variant of the Super Horner -- the F/A-18 XT -- which the defense contractor is pitching in response to Trump's request for a proposal to compete against the Navy's Joint Strike Fighter aircraft requirement.

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The Pentagon has stripped plans for the United States to participate in buying Joint Strike Fighter aircraft as part of a new three-year "block-buy" contract, largely limiting participation in the potential multiyear deal to foreign buyers, according to a senior Defense Department official. The deal was originally touted to save as much as $3 billion.

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Army Gen. John Nicholson, commander of the Resolute Support mission and U.S. forces in Afghanistan, last week pushed the Senate Armed Services Committee to approve additional funds for the Afghan Air Force, calling airborne fighters key to the continued push against the Taliban.

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The Air Force said this week it will scrap parts of its strategy to replace the legacy Space-Based Space Surveillance satellite system, attributing the change of plans to its newly adopted, largely classified Space Enterprise Vision.

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Defense Department space policy officials told Congress in a recent report that Federal Communications Commission acceptance of Europe's Galileo positioning, navigation and timing system would help address rising concerns about resiliency in the U.S. GPS constellation.

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The Pentagon's advanced research arm is seeking industry's input to develop an architecture to enhance offensive swarming tactics with an eye for how this could help in challenging urban environments, according to a new broad agency announcement.

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The Army intends to establish six security force assistance brigades and a new academy to train them, according to an announcement from the service.

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The commander of the 388th Fighter Wing, which operates F-35As at Hill Air Force Base, UT, said this week that widely reported development problems with the stealthy jet's diagnostics and health management system have become a "non-event" for the wing as the system matures and new software is fielded.

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The Air Force expects to set up a program of record to counter small unmanned aerial systems by the end of fiscal year 2018, according to a service spokeswoman, as the threat of armed small UAS grows in the Middle Eastern theater.

(337 words)

February 16, 2017

Air Force Special Operations Command chief Lt. Gen. Brad Webb said Tuesday the command is exploring its options for replacing the U-28A and MC-12 fleets with platforms that can be used in low- and high-intensity operations in an analysis of alternatives slated to wrap up in July.

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The F-35 program manager told Congress this week the program incurs an additional $30 million in costs for every six months initial operational test and evaluation is delayed -- one of several reasons he has pushed for an early start to the key testing phase.

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Defense experts in Washington are mulling what the future of the Obama administration's "Third Offset" investments could look like under President Trump, as the Defense Department begins to shape its near-term budgets and updated national defense strategy.

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The Air Force is pushing back its final request for proposals for the UH-1N Huey replacement effort from this month until sometime this summer, a service spokesman said this week, and will release a second draft RFP in April.

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House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-TX) said this week he is worried that Defense Secretary Jim Mattis might be unknowingly steered in the wrong budgetary direction by former Obama administration officials at the Pentagon, who, Thornberry asserts, have spent the past several years denying the existence of readiness problems and fighting congressional efforts to increase defense spending.

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The chief executive of shipbuilder Huntington Ingalls said Thursday that growing the Navy's fleet to the level President Trump has advocated would not be "a light switch that you just turn on."

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Defense Secretary Jim Mattis' directive to review the Joint Strike Fighter program stems from a pair of phone calls then-President-elect Donald Trump had in January with F-35 Joint Program Office director Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, the senior Air Force officer told lawmakers.

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The head of the F-35 joint program office told lawmakers this week he is 'confident' he won't be asking lawmakers for more money to complete development, stating that favorable future negotiations could free up funds to mitigate additional costs.

(573 words)

The Army intends to establish six security force assistance brigades and a new academy to train them, according to an announcement from the service.

(216 words)