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Daily News

April 04, 2019

The Missile Defense Agency has pushed back plans for a new Pacific Radar by two years -- delaying all key milestones for a new sensor needed to plug holes in the U.S. military's ability to track projected future North Korean long-range rockets during the midcourse of flight -- while also trimming planned five-year spending on the project from $1 billion to $764 million.

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If Turkey were removed from the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter supply chain, the program office expects there would be a slowdown of parts to the three production lines within three months time, resulting in between 50 and 75 aircraft being delivered late over a two-year period.

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As Pentagon leaders move forward with plans to stand up a new Space Development Agency, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson continues to air her concerns with the new organization, telling lawmakers this week she worries the agency will be too detached from the warfighter and could impede ongoing work to develop a proliferated low earth orbit satellite constellation.

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The Navy is evaluating how unmanned vessels will factor into the fleet and expects to issue a new requirement for autonomous ships, according to a senior service official.

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April 03, 2019

One of the leading congressional proponents of the movement to create a new Space Force told Pentagon leadership today there are major issues with DOD's legislative proposal.

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The Missile Defense Agency is working to determine the full extent of the delay to the Redesigned Kill Vehicle program and -- based on technology testing currently underway -- plans to revise the estimated two-year schedule slip by either lengthening the delay or trimming it as soon as this summer, according to a senior Defense Department official.

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The Defense Innovation Board is recommending the Defense Department share its electromagnetic spectrum with civil operators so the United States can compete with China in the deployment of 5G technologies, but the Pentagon should also prepare to operate in a "post-Western" wireless ecosystem.

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The Missile Defense Agency and the Air Force are seeking $30 million to launch a classified, joint program over the next three years that could be used to begin a new interceptor program or modify an existing guided missile based on scant details in the Pentagon's new spending request.

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The Air Force is planning to expand its infrastructure to conduct operational tests of hypersonics technology, a next-generation capability the service has prioritized for rapid prototyping.

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The Navy in August will begin retrofitting a new cabin-pressure altimeter on more than 1,000 F/A-18 Hornets and Super Hornets, one of several modifications intended to prevent physiological episodes in pilots.

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The Pentagon is lining up the transfer of a second former Coast Guard cutter to Vietnam as part of a push for closer security ties with the nation, but Hanoi's financial limitations and legacy of using Russian weapons puts constraints on potential arms sales, according to current and former U.S. officials.

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The Army plans to replace all UH-60 Black Hawk A models in the National Guard by fiscal year 2022 and in the active force by 2024, according to a service official.

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Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA) yesterday bemoaned the lack of a disaster relief supplemental bill and said one must be passed within the next eight days before Congress adjourns for its Easter recess.

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The Overseas Contingency Operations account was introduced in 2009 to fund wars abroad, meant to give the Pentagon greater flexibility to pay for unexpected costs.

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April 02, 2019

Army Secretary Mark Esper is telling the defense industrial base to get on board with the service's modernization goals amid concerns over the service's drastic reallocation of funds from legacy upgrades and other programs to the defined six priorities in its fiscal year 2020 budget.

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The Defense Department is asking industry about the feasibility of demonstrating a 1,000 kilowatt-class laser for missile defense as soon as 2025, seeking industry feedback on the potential for scaling up electrically pumped, directed-energy technology -- for an undisclosed platform and mission -- to power levels that in theory could destroy an enemy ballistic missile during the boost phase of flight.

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The counterintelligence landscape has evolved from a focus on various nation-state actors to specific issues such as cybersecurity and supply-chain threats, intelligence official Bill Evanina said Monday, while advocating for government and industry groups to pursue "enterprise-wide" solutions to combat those supply-chain threats.

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HUNTSVILLE, AL -- The Army is working to define a range requirement for its new project to develop a "Mobile Medium-Range Missile" for the Pacific region based on a need identified by combatant commanders.

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April 01, 2019

The Navy is accelerating its research and development to counter commercially available unmanned aircraft systems, and is partnering with the Defense Digital Service to do it, according to a March 28 memo obtained by Inside Defense.

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The Missile Defense Agency is laying the technical groundwork for the Standard Missile-3 Block IIA -- a Navy interceptor originally designed to counter medium- and intermediate-range threats -- to also have an operational mission against intercontinental ballistic missiles, potentially stretching the reach of the new weapon to reinforce defense of the nation against North Korean threats.

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