Air

f-35cproduction

WASHINGTON: Lockheed and the government made it official today, signing the $4.7 billion eighth Low Rate Initial Production contract for the F-35. Here’s the full price and the official language: “Lockheed Martin Corp., Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $4,123,746,486 modification to a previously awarded fixed-price-incentive firm-target contract (N00019-13-C-0008) for… Keep reading →

CSBA graphic

WASHINGTON: Someone shoots a cruise missile at you. How far away would you like to stop it: over 200 miles out or less than 35? If you answered “over 200,” congratulations, you’re thinking like the US Navy, which has spent billions of dollars over decades to develop ever more sophisticated anti-missile defenses. According to Bryan… Keep reading →

Next Generation Jammer in tests

WASHINGTON: Raytheon’s Next Generation Jammer underwent its first test flights at the Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake as the electronic warfare association’s annual conference got underway in October. The tests were performed to judge whether the system could successfully jam and disrupt enemy threat radars. This marks the first tests of the pod itself, the AESA… Keep reading →

F-35C Joint Strike Fighter conducts its first launch from an aircraft carrier.

WASHINGTON: Hard as it may be to believe in light of the F-35′s history, the carrier version of the plane completed its first shipboard developmental tests three days early. Now the program did build several days into the F-35C’s test schedule to embrace delays caused by weather or other unexpected problems, but the fact is… Keep reading →

The Sikorsky-Boeing SB-1 Defiant concept for the Joint Multi-Role demonstrator, a predecessor to the Future Vertical Lift aircraft.

WASHINGTON: The first Future Vertical Lift Aircraft won’t fly until the 2030s but the Army, Navy, and industry are already at work on software standards. Those include a new “model-based” approach to software architectures that will require a culture change among programmers and defense bureaucrats alike. Why take on so much so early? Because FVL will… Keep reading →

Scott Swanson with Predator sensor ball - undated - from Scott Swanson (4)

The first person to fire a Hellfire missile from a Predator drone in combat and destroy a target writes here about his experience. Scott Swanson has never written about this before. Read on. The Editor. Flying a Predator drone in combat is nothing like playing a video game. Take it from me, the first person to pull… Keep reading →

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[UPDDATED with Hagel memo & expert comment] REAGAN LIBRARY: After months of build-up, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel formally launched the military’s quest for a combination of new technologies to maintain America’s military supremacy over the next 20 years in the face of Russian and Chinese challenges. In a speech before the second Reagan National Defense Forum here, Hagel divulged… Keep reading →

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PENTAGON: It isn’t official but Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work hinted today that the United States will undertake a fundamental reordering of its national security budget by paying for new nuclear submarines, new nuclear bombers and new ICBMs in new accounts set aside just for them. “This is something we have discussed in the department,” Work… Keep reading →

Expanding the Reach of the Carrier Strike Group

F-35C on approach to USS Nimitz

Naval Air Station Fallon trains the naval air wing for aircraft carriers; Rear Adm. Mike Manazir, director of Navy Air Warfare, works to improve its capabilities. Manazir is a battle-hardened carrier admiral. By chance our interview with the admiral occurred shortly after the successful initial tests of the F-35C aboard the USS Nimitz. He focused on the… Keep reading →

932nd Airlift Wing receives new plane

PENTAGON: When the the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, was delayed by a day-and-a-half on his mission to secure the release of the two American hostages in North Korea because his plane wasn’t ready to fly, it sounded like a pretty good story. Combine it with recent problems with Secretary of State John Kerry’s aircraft and… Keep reading →

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