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Inside the Air Force - August 17, 2018
  • Boeing eyes KC-46 FAA supplemental certification to support first delivery

    Boeing expects the Federal Aviation Administration later this month to approve a key supplemental certification for the new KC-46 tanker fleet later this month -- one of a few remaining hurdles the company must overcome before it delivers the first aircraft this fall.

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  • Air Force uses rapid prototyping authorities to award two contracts

    The Air Force awarded two sizable contracts this week for hypersonic weapons development and next-generation missile warning satellites using new rapid prototyping authorities granted by Congress.

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  • GAO: Combat Rescue Helicopter fielding schedule poses reserve training problems

    The Air Force will maintain its plan to field new Combat Rescue Helicopters starting in fiscal year 2020 despite looming problems for training reserve squadrons, because changing the schedule would require renegotiating its contract with Sikorsky, according to a new Government Accountability Office report.

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  • Pentagon still working through cost, scope of Space Force

    The Pentagon hasn't yet determined the cost to create a new Space Force, but the deputy defense secretary said last week he assumes it will require "billions" of dollars in additional resources.

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  • Trump Signs NDAA

    President Trump on Monday signed into law the Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act. The legislation authorizes about $716 billion in total defense spending. The bill also directs the Defense Department to establish a combatant command for space, which is slated to become a signature line of effort in the establishment of a new Space Force. Meanwhile, the Senate has yet to vote on a final defense appropriations bill, though the House has already done so. However, the Senate has opted to forgo summer recess and is in session this week, giving lawmakers the opportunity to pass the defense spending bill with other appropriations measures as part of a legislative "minibus."

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  • Air Force eyes adding EW system onto heavy aircraft within nine months

    The Air Force wants to integrate an off-the-shelf, dual offensive and defensive electronic-warfare system onto C-130J derivative aircraft and other large platforms in as little as three months, according to a recent notice.

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  • Trump concerned about NDAA's Russia, Korea and JSTARS provisions

    President Trump says he has "constitutional concerns" with dozens of provisions in the Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, including those addressing U.S.-Russian military cooperation, continued stationing of American troops on the Korean Peninsula and the management of several weapon systems.

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  • GAO: Service safety centers providing incomplete aviation mishap data

    As lawmakers press the Defense Department for more details about the cause of increased aviation mishap rates, a recent Government Accountability Office report highlights a lack of standardization and enforcement in mishap data reporting from the services that is limiting the accuracy and breadth of the department's analysis on mishap trends.

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  • Groups tout legislation aimed at reducing background investigations backlog

    Industry groups are pushing Congress to compel the government to take steps to drastically reduce the backlog of background investigations as the Pentagon readies to take over the investigative process.

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  • CBO: Budget caps limit base budget to $550B, $563B in FY-20, FY-21

    The Pentagon's fiscal years 2020 and 2021 base budget allocations will total $550 billion and $563 billion respectively -- dramatically below Trump administration plans -- if discretionary spending caps required by the 2011 Budget Control Act for those two years are not adjusted, according to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office.

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  • Trump administration notes objections to Senate defense spending bill

    The White House "strongly objects" to a measure in the Senate's fiscal year 2019 defense appropriations bill that would add $475 million to procure a second Littoral Combat Ship, as well as host of provisions, according to a recent statement of administration policy.

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  • Perspecta reports sales boost

    Perspecta said this week sales in its most recent quarter hit $793 million, up 17 percent from the same three-month period the prior year.

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  • Aerojet Rocketdyne to expand Arkansas facility

    Aerojet Rocketdyne said Aug. 15 it will expand its Arkansas facility, where it builds solid rocket motors and warheads.

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  • Independent study will inform Pentagon's Space Force proposal

    The Pentagon will rely, in part, on an independent study directed by the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act to inform its plan to create a separate Space Force.

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  • Mattis makes it clear -- he now backs Space Force

    Defense Secretary Jim Mattis now supports the creation of a Space Force as a sixth branch of the U.S. military, saying recently that his past opposition was based on having not clearly defined the problem.

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  • Selva: Standing up Space Force will be complicated

    The military's second highest-ranking officer said Aug. 10 that while the Pentagon will fully support President Trump's direction to propose the creation of a Space Force, the complicated path toward a sixth service will require "significant work with Congress."

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  • Defense law requires DOD to assist DHS with 'non-reimbursable' resources

    The Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act signed into law this week calls on the Pentagon to provide assistance to the Department of Homeland Security in protecting critical infrastructure from cyberattacks -- in line with a long-standing arrangement between DHS and private industryy on sharing threat intelligence -- as part of a pilot project slated to run through 2022.

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  • Mixed views as Trump scraps Obama order on offensive cyber actions

    Industry sources and Obama administration veterans are expressing concerns about President Trump's decision to scrap Presidential Policy Directive-20 -- which has guided the use of cyber weapons by the military -- while other sources say this simply removes bureaucratic hurdles that have undermined cyber deterrence policy.

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