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Aircraft

April 26, 2012 | Inside the Pentagon

Amid reports the United Kingdom may drop plans to buy the F-35C aircraft-carrier variant of the Joint Strike Fighter and opt instead for the F-35B short-takeoff-and-vertical-landing variant, the Navy is declining to comment on the implementation of a recently inked bilateral pact on carriers.

April 25, 2012 | Daily News

House authorizers have recommended fully funding the Air Force's bomber aircraft plans in fiscal year 2013, but those same lawmakers are "discouraged" and "disappointed" by the service's path forward on several platforms, among them the next-generation bomber.

April 24, 2012 | Daily News

(Editor's note: This story has been updated to include information made public at 1:12 p.m. by the office of Sen. Carl Levin (D-MI), the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee. It has also been edited to reflect that the Air Force had proposed cutting 9,900 personnel across all its components, not only the Air National Guard.)

April 19, 2012 | Daily News

The Pentagon estimates the cost to develop and acquire the KC-46A aerial refueling fleet will be $276 million more than forecast last fall, nudging the projected price tag for the development and procurement of 179 aircraft up less than 1 percent, to $51.9 billion, according to a report provided to Congress last month.

April 18, 2012 | Daily News

The price tag for the Joint Strike Fighter's fourth production run could be $534 million higher than originally expected, a 12.5 percent increase propelled by an estimated $289 million in additional costs to correct deficiencies uncovered during F-35 flight testing, according to the Defense Department.

April 16, 2012 | Daily News

The Pentagon on Friday announced a $258 million contract to buy two additional F-35 aircraft using money found during an end-of-fiscal-year-budget review, a sum nearly equal to the Defense Department's $263 million reprogramming request last summer denied by Congress that aimed to siphon funds from other Navy and Air Force accounts to finance F-35 cost growth.

April 13, 2012 | Inside the Navy
The Navy will see a big increase in strike fighter procurement funding in the coming years with the advent of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, but the service will make deep cuts over that period to just about every other type of aircraft as the procurement of new platforms wraps up, according to the 30-year aviation plan submitted to Congress recently.
April 11, 2012 | Inside the Pentagon

The Defense Department has detailed its long-term aircraft plans in a report that for the first time includes all military rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, operational support and executive aircraft programs -- providing unprecedented detail about the Pentagon's 10-year, $770 billion plan to sustain a fleet of more than 14,000 aircraft.

April 11, 2012 | Daily News

The Defense Department has detailed its long-term aircraft plans in a report that for the first time includes all military rotary-wing aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles, operational support and executive aircraft programs -- providing unprecedented detail about the Pentagon's 10-year, $770 billion plan to sustain a fleet of more than 14,000 aircraft.

April 06, 2012 | Inside the Navy
The Navy was able to shave $30.8 million off the costs of the P-8A Poseidon anti-submarine warfare and maritime surveillance aircraft program due to lower aircraft procurement costs than expected from milestone B to milestone C, according to Naval Air Systems Command.
April 05, 2012 | Daily News

The Air Force has kicked back an alternative force-structure proposal put forth by several state governors in an attempt to combat the impact of the service's strategic changes to the Air National Guard.

Air Force Secretary Michael Donley told reporters today during a Defense Writers Group breakfast that the service wants the Council of Governors, a 10-person bipartisan organization with a rotating membership that includes governors of individual states, to consider making changes to the alternative force structure proposal it submitted to the Air Force.

March 30, 2012 | Inside the Navy
The remainder of 2012 will be a critical period for the Navy and Marine Corps variants of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter as the program seeks to further convince Congress and wary international partners that the worst is behind them, and officials have been lining up before Congress recently to try to do just that.
March 30, 2012 | Inside the Army

The Enhanced Medium Altitude Reconnaissance and Surveillance system could experience some schedule risks that would throw it from its 18-month period of performance to deliver four aircraft, according to the service's EMARSS program manager, although the program is, at the moment, on schedule to complete all four planes in 17.5 months.

March 29, 2012 | Inside the Pentagon

A defense agency expects this summer to conclude a review of whether F-35 Joint Strike Fighter prime contractor Lockheed Martin has improved its management practices enough to win back a revoked Pentagon certification.

March 28, 2012 | Daily News

Clarification: the original version of this story said the “affordability” targets were mandatory. A senior Pentagon official today said they are a “management tool” and not compulsory. The story has been updated accordingly.

The Pentagon's acting acquisition executive has formally reset the Joint Strike Fighter program's acquisition baseline, capping a 20-month effort by senior leaders to recalibrate estimated cost, schedule and performance and establishing new "affordability" targets to strive for by 2019.

March 23, 2012 | Inside the Navy
Delays in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program are forcing the Marine Corps to keep legacy F/A-18 Hornets and AV-8B Harriers operating until 2031 -- eight years longer than originally planned, top Navy officials told Congress in written testimony last week.
March 23, 2012 | Inside the Navy
The Navy has identified six manned and unmanned aircraft platforms that will form the "family of systems" that will serve as the replacement for the EP-3, although the actual makeup of the concept hasn't been fully developed yet, according to written testimony submitted to Congress last week.
March 23, 2012 | Inside the Navy
The Pentagon's acquisition executive appears set to approve the milestone B decision on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program within the next few days, Vice Adm. David Venlet, JSF program executive officer, told reporters on Capitol Hill last week.
March 23, 2012 | Daily News

Japan last month signed a $6 million contract for studies led by the Defense Department and two Joint Strike Fighter contractors that will outline options for how Japanese companies could manufacture components and play a role in assembling the conventional-take-off-and-landing F-35 aircraft that Tokyo plans to buy, according to DOD officials.

March 21, 2012 | Daily News

The Pentagon wants a contractual framework for the next two rounds of F-35 purchases from Lockheed Martin that increase government leverage, limiting the sixth production run to 26 jets -- 20 percent below the 31 authorized and appropriated in fiscal year 2012 -- until the prime contractor demonstrates progress on specific criteria.

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