space

A failed microcircuit. (Naval Sea Systems Command)

“There’re a lot of chiselers out there,” Vice Adm. Mark Harnitchek sighed. Congressional angst over counterfeit parts has understandably focused on ersatz electronics, many of them from much-mistrusted China, but as head of the Defense Logistics Agency, Harnitchek has found fakes in everything from air filters to rubber tubing. “There’re folks that counterfeit those, believe it or… Keep reading →

cybercommand

Joan Johnson Freese, a member of our Board of Contributors and professor at the Naval War College, is an expert on space, Strategic Command and several other topics dealt with below. She doesn’t think the creation of Cyber Command is a great idea. Read on to find why. The Editor. Analysis of the Peloponnesian War… Keep reading →

SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets in production.

NATIONAL HARBOR: When will the Air Force certify SpaceX as ready to launch military satellites — if they certify the upstart startup at all? The new chief of Air Force Space Command said this morning that “hopefully” he could certify SpaceX by December 1st. Just hours later, though, the Secretary of the Air Force, Deborah… Keep reading →

RD-180 engines on Atlas V

WASHINGTON: When the Air Force issued a Request for Information about an engine to replace the RD-180 it began to look as if they were serious about committing to build the first new rocket engine in decades. But we also received two new RD-180 engines from Russia the same day as the RFI went out, the United… Keep reading →

Lockheed Martin employees and guests watch the launch of the WorldView-3 satellite Wednesday.

  [UPDATED: WorldView-3 launched successfully Wednesday from Vandenberg Air Force Base, California at 11:30 am Pacific time, 2:30 pm Eastern] When DigitalGlobe’s WorldView-3 satellite soars skyward tomorrow – weather permitting – most attention will naturally be on the parts that go up. But the bus-sized imagery collection satellite is just the high-tech tip of an… Keep reading →

lockheed boeing long range strike bomber

PENTAGON: The grander the title, the blander the content. That’s normally a safe rule in Washington. But if analyzed closely, this afternoon’s “State of the Air Force” briefing by service Secretary Deborah Lee James and Chief of Staff Mark Welsh, plus the accompanying pamphlet A Call To the Future, actually do articulate a remarkably clear… Keep reading →

Gen. William Shelton, commander of US Air Force Space Command.

WASHINGTON: Watch the skies. While they’re far from falling, the head of Air Force Space Command said today, the heavens aren’t the “peaceful sanctuary” they once were, either. Nothing short of a nuclear missile could pull the plug on a satellite constellation as robust as the Global Positioning System (GPS), Gen. William Shelton said, semi-reassuringly.… Keep reading →

SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets in production.

[UPDATED with SpaceX comment] WASHINGTON: For the first time in a decade, the Air Force has opened its primary space launch program to competition. That’s something startup rocket company SpaceX and Congress have pushed for vigorously. It’s also a long-anticipated blow for the United Space Alliance — formed by Boeing and Lockheed Martin – which has… Keep reading →

chinaj31stealth-1362603329

WASHINGTON: The People’s Liberation Army has practiced jamming GPS signals, according to a Pentagon report today. The Chinese are testing those and other electronic warfare weapons and they have “proven effective.” China plans to launch 100 satellites through 2015, including “imaging, remote sensing, navigation, communication, and scientific satellites, as well as manned spacecraft,” says a… Keep reading →

SpaceX Falcon 9 rockets in production.

COLORADO SPRINGS: SpaceX does not look likely to get what it most wants from Capitol Hill in its battle against the United Launch Alliance and the Air Force: more launches sooner. Support for competition between the two companies remains vibrant, with Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and Jim Clapper, director… Keep reading →

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