The Biden administration will seek $11 billion to buy 85 Lockheed Martin Corp. F-35 jets in the coming fiscal year, tracking a plan outlined last year by the Trump administration, according to a U.S. official. With a $715 billion budget request for fiscal year 2022, the Pentagon had considered increasing the quantity of next-generation fighters it planned to buy but decided to instead focus on using additional funding to upgrade the F-35 with new capabilities every six months, the official said.
Federal officers arrested two men on May 12 amid allegations that they illegally obtained and sold sensitive Air Force technical data, the Justice Department announced in a release. Sarfraz Yousuf, 43, is accused of selling at least 1,875 sets of data known as technical orders to Marc Chavez, 53, between January 2015 and July 2020. Chavez paid at least $132,280 for the information and resold the manuals for a profit as recently as December 2020, according to the U.S. government.
Despite a controversy that has led to two separate government reviews, the Air Force’s top civilian leader said this month he remains “very confident” in the process that selected Huntsville, Alabama, as the permanent home of the U.S. Space Command.
The Pentagon team developing a new joint war-fighting concept is walking a delicate line to define when the military services need to follow common standards and when the branches need to develop their own solutions that are still interoperable.
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. says the service is seriously considering building a fighter fleet with more drones than piloted aircraft.
The 37th Helicopter Squadron took possession of an aerial gunnery simulator at the helicopter hangar on F.E. Warren Air Force Base, Wyoming, April 27. The simulator is expected to provide substantial cost savings to the squadron as well as provide accurate simulated training for Airmen manning the M240D rifle on the UH-1N Huey and then the MH-139 Grey Wolf.
Lockheed Martin has partnered with the Air Force to help establish a software development factory to come up with command and control and mission planning applications for U.S. Strategic Command as part of the Global Strike and Product Support contract. Lockheed’s GSPS team worked with USSTRATCOM at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska to create 12 software pipelines using Agile DevSecOps methodologies and develop a cloud-based environment.
Snagging a promotion to master sergeant became more difficult this year, as just under 19 percent of those eligible to rise to the grade of E-7 made the cut. The Air Force announced May 11 that it considered a pool of 24,721 technical sergeants for promotion and ultimately chose 4,676 of those Airmen. That resulted in a promotion rate of 18.9 percent, according to the Air Force Personnel Center.
Upgrades to the MQ-9 Reaper’s communications and targeting capabilities are being demonstrated by the Air National Guard during the Northern Edge 2021 exercise in the Arctic, with a goal to help the venerable drone “play an increased, more prominent role in the command and control arena of the battlefield.” The new pod-based capabilities will be flown onboard a 174th Attack Wing MQ-9, according to a May 6 press release from the New York Air National Guard’s 174th Attack Wing.
Just about everybody who lives and or works in Bossier City has looked up and seen a B-52 or maybe a fighter jet. And some have seen something that looks a little more like a commercial aircraft such as a 747 fly over on occasion and thought, what's that? "The E4-B Nightwatch is a robust airborne communications node that links the President and other senior government leaders to our national capabilities and strategic forces during a time of crisis," said Maj. Gen. Mark Weatherington, Eighth Air Force and Global Strike Operations Center commander.
The U.S. Air Force has unveiled a new robotic arm that’s designed to cut down on the time and manpower needed to clean a fighter jet. The arm can fully wash an F-16 Viper fighter jet in just one hour, saving major time and manpower. The technology will likely be ported to other aircraft, and could be useful to decontaminate aircraft exposed to dangerous chemical agents.
Cape Canaveral Space Force Station is preparing to integrate a pair of multi-manifest satellite vehicles that would gather data for future technology development. The Space-Based Infrared System GEO-5 satellite will carry Technology Demonstration Orbiters 3 and 4, which contain several payloads for U.S. Air Force Academy, Los Angeles Air Force Base said.
The Air Force acknowledged that the display by security forces Airmen at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, of a “thin blue line” flag violated Defense Department policy on what types of flags can be flown on U.S. bases. The 86th Airlift Wing posted and later removed photos on its Facebook page of Airmen in uniform carrying a black-and-white American flag with a blue horizontal stripe during a 24-hour rucksack march as part of National Police Week.
The U.S. Missile Defense Agency aims to get its first Next-Generation Interceptors to replace the Ground-Based Interceptors, which make up the United States’ homeland ballistic missile defense system, by 2028. But the agency’s director thinks it can happen sooner. Two teams—a Northrop Grumman and Raytheon team, and Lockheed Martin with Aerojet Rocketdyne—will go head-to-head to develop the NGI after each were awarded a development contract to mature technology and reduce risk.
As silly as it sounds, aircraft paint actually plays an important role protecting the machine from corrosion, which one Airman explained is the leading cost of maintenance repair in the Air Force.
Will we ever be able to trust an autonomous aircraft? Mark Skoog, the principal investigator for autonomy at NASA Armstrong Flight Research Center, joins Aviation Week’s Graham Warwick and Guy Norris to discuss an effort to enable autonomous aircraft to be programmed with internal values and rules of behavior to ensure they are safe.
Florida divers and fishermen have a new artificial reef to enjoy as of May 7. The large 93-foot Air Force steel-hull water training vessel Big Dawg was sunk to the seafloor in 104 feet of water, 14 miles southwest of the Destin Pass.