DOD has not one, not two, not three but at least six studies on tactical aircraft needs underway. They are looking at everything from affordability/capability trade-offs to combatant commander concepts for deployment in future conflict to acquisition strategies. “The results of these efforts will inform the National Defense Strategy, and decisions to be captured in the President’s fiscal year 2023 budget submission and associated future year’s defense program,” Joseph Nogueira, acting director of DOD’s Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation (CAPE), told lawmakers July 13.
The U.S. government and military traditionally relied on industry for much of the software development, but in recent years, the armed services have trained software developers to build tools for operators. Now, an Air Force cyberspace wing is testing a hybrid approach by embedding developers at commercial production spaces—an idea the wing calls software factory as a service.
Big news for the many Airmen out there who want to grow out their beards: Not only is there little evidence showing that beards interfere with a gas mask seal, but the Air Force’s ban on beards may also be contributing to racial discrimination and hurting promotion opportunities within the service. That’s according to a new research paper published last week in the journal Military Medicine, which found that Air Force regulations against facial hair disproportionately affect Black or African American Airmen and can lead to slower rates of promotion and limited job opportunities within the service.
A tiny Finnish cubesat could make history later this year as the world’s first plywood satellite—and it will even have a selfie stick to record the moment. On July 9, after technical testing of the Woodsat’s birch-plywood outer shell, the European Space Agency certified it for flight.
Cloud technologies are accelerating change at every level of the Air Force—and the Space Force. Whether it's pure computational power to enable autonomy or advanced encryption to ensure mission-grade security, the future of IT is here and now.
The Defense Department’s inspector general on July 12 criticized the military's two coastal facilities in charge of shipping large containers of arms, ammunition, and explosives around the world for security lapses, which could place these weapons at risk of theft. The IG report said U.S. Transportation Command's ocean terminals at Concord, Calif., and Sunny Point, N.C., have been plagued by staffing and funding shortages that hurt their ability to provide security both on land and the water surrounding the facilities.
China's expansive far western regions are well suited to hosting facilities to support various kinds of military research and development and test and evaluation activities, especially in the air and space arenas. One particularly interesting facility that appears to have largely escaped public attention, features, among other things, an absolutely massive hangar and is situated near other sites associated with missile defense and anti-satellite activities. The hangar clearly has to do with the development of lighter-than-air craft, which could include large unmanned airship designs capable of operating in the upper reaches of the atmosphere.
Former President George W. Bush criticized the Western withdrawal from Afghanistan in an interview with a German broadcaster released July 14, saying he fears that Afghan women and girls will “suffer unspeakable harm.” Asked in an interview with German international broadcaster Deutsche Welle whether the withdrawal is a mistake, Bush replied: “You know, I think it is, yeah, because I think the consequences are going to be unbelievably bad.”
The Air Force station in New Boston has been renamed to reflect its role in the U.S. Space Force, authorities announced July 12. The station is now called the New Boston Space Force Station. Officials also announced a change of command. U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Daniel Highlander relinquished command to U.S. Space Force Lt. Col. David Zesinger.
Daniel "Chappie" James Jr. was a lot of things over the course of his life: Tuskegee Airman, Korean War fighter ace, the first Black four-star general in the U.S. armed forces—and the man who almost shot and killed Libyan dictator Moammar Gadhafi.