ASAT test astronaut

Listen to a USAF Astronaut’s Emergency Call With NASA After Russian ASAT Test

Air Force Col. Raja Chari is the astronaut onboard the International Space Station heard receiving emergency instructions from Johnson Space Center after Nov. 15’s anti-satellite weapon test by Russia, NASA confirmed to Air Force Magazine. Commander of the Crew-3 mission—the third under SpaceX’s contract to transport astronauts in its Crew Dragon capsules—Chari is a test pilot and member of NASA’s “Artemis Team” of astronauts picked to prepare for moon missions.

Parsons Gets to Work on New Air Base Defense Plan for Europe, Africa

An initial team of Parsons employees arrived at Ramstein Air Base, Germany, on Nov. 15, and its members are now working daily with U.S. Air Forces in Europe-Air Forces Africa, designing a plan to better defend U.S. air bases in the European and African theaters. The goal is to build an integrated system of systems that uses both commercial and government off-the-shelf software and hardware to help the service digest mass amounts of data that can be replicated at other locations and potentially on an expeditionary basis.
dod capitol insurrection

DOD Inspector General Finds Pentagon Leaders Acted Appropriately on Jan. 6

Officials within the Defense Department acted appropriately and reasonably in reacting to the Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, a DOD inspector general's report found, determining that they “did not delay or obstruct” a response to the U.S. Capitol Police’s request for assistance. The Nov. 18 report, however, does include a dozen recommendations for the Pentagon to consider to better its defense support of civil authorities, ranging from clarifying chain-of-command issues, to better communication equipment, to more planning and training.
Arthur Sinodinos

Australia-US Alliance to Include Enhanced Air and Space Cooperation

Australia is declaring its allegiance to the “global rules-based order,” the U.S. Defense Department’s code for keeping China in check, with a host of joint military capability development plans that go beyond the recent high-profile sharing of nuclear submarine technology. “China has risen, and the center of gravity of the global economy, the global geopolitics, if you like, has shifted to the Indo-Pacific,” Australian ambassador in Washington, D.C., Arthur Sinodinos said at a meeting of the Defense Writers Group on Nov. 16. The ambassador cited artificial intelligence, machine learning, cyber warfare, quantum computing, and enhanced air and space cooperation.

Radar Sweep

F-35 Faces Stiff Competition as European Nations Decide on Future Fighters

Breaking Defense

Over the next few years, a trio of European nations will make major decisions on their future fighter aircraft, meaning a potential impact on the long-term American/European fighter market—and whether European manufacturers can rack up wins against the nearly undefeated F-35—looms.

Military Parents Foot the Bill to Ship Breast Milk to Their Infants. That’s About to Change.

Air Force Times

When Maj. Jenna Waites, an Air Force weather officer, was preparing for Army Command and General Staff College in Kansas earlier this year, the nursing mom faced a dilemma: how to feed her infant while she was away for 10 days. Her solution was to ship a 45-pound case of frozen breast milk—enough for 14 days—at a cost of nearly $500. In fact, many military moms have to ship milk when they are on temporary duty because they don’t have enough at home to feed the baby while they are gone. The only way they can ensure it stays frozen is to Express Mail it.

OPINION: Don’t Give Turkey an F-16 Consolation Prize

Defense News

“At the November G20 meeting, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and U.S. President Joe Biden met to discuss ongoing tensions and Turkey potentially purchasing the F-16. Washington should be skeptical. The Turkish government has repeatedly ignored alliance commitments and used U.S. weapons sales against both U.S. and NATO interests, such as its provocations in the Mediterranean and aggressions against the Kurds. Selling Turkey advanced fighter aircraft, which it will then use without constraint, defeats the purpose of the G20 meeting,” write Natalie Armbruster, a research associate at Defense Priorities, and Jordan Cohen, a defense and foreign policy analyst at the Cato Institute.

‘This is Urgent’: Bipartisan Proposal for UFO Office Pushes New Boundaries


A bipartisan proposal to create a more expansive military and intelligence program to study UFOs is urgently needed to determine whether unexplained sightings by Navy and Air Force pilots pose a threat or are evidence of some “other entity,” the lead sponsor said Nov. 17. “If it is technology possessed by adversaries or any other entity, we need to know,” Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) said in her first interview about the effort. “Burying our heads in the sand is neither a strategy nor an acceptable approach.”

Air Force’s Kessel Run and Platform One Ink Collaboration Agreement


Two of the Air Force‘s premier software innovation groups signed an agreement to collaborate on technical and workforce issues and better use their limited resources to create a common tech-development stack. The agreement between the Air Force’s Kessel Run and Platform One lays out cultural and technical points the groups will work together on, including building common security authentication standards, enforcing policy, and establishing cross-platform and cross-environment portability. The hope is to eventually enable sharing of code and tools that are often redundant.

Tyvak Wins $8.4 Million Military Contract for Experiment in Very Low Earth Orbit


The Air Force Research Laboratory Space Vehicles Directorate announced Nov. 17 it awarded an $8.4 million contract to Tyvak Nano-Satellite Systems for an experiment in very low Earth orbit projected to launch in 2024. AFRL started the project known as the Precise flight experiment as it seeks to better understand the physics of the upper atmosphere.

Secret RQ-180 ‘White Bat’ Spy Drone Alluded to in New Air Force Video

The Drive

It seems like the drumbeat of news regarding the existence of the U.S. Air Force's secret 'RQ-180' high-altitude, long-endurance, flying-wing stealth drone is really picking up in tempo. After three sightings of such a craft, two over America's premier flight test airspace in California and Nevada and another seemingly over the Philippines, it seems like an official disclosure of the aircraft could potentially happen soon. Further evidence of this possibility comes directly from the Air Force's Profession of Arms Center of Excellence.

New Report Calls for US Strategy to Boost Space Economy


U.S. national security space organizations released a report Nov. 18 proposing ways to boost the nation’s space economy and technology base. The 92-page “State of the Space Industrial Base 2021” report was written by senior officials from the U.S. Space Force, the Air Force Research Laboratory, and the Defense Innovation Unit. It summarizes discussions held with more than 250 government, industry, and academic experts.

Defense Innovation Unit Publishes 'Responsible AI Guidelines'

DOD release

New guidelines for responsible artificial intelligence provide a step-by-step framework for AI companies, Defense Department stakeholders, and program managers to help ensure that "AI programs are built with the principles of fairness, accountability, and transparency at each step in the development cycle of an AI system," said Jared Dunnmon, technical director of the artificial intelligence/machine learning portfolio at DIU.

One More Thing

Air Force Drops Sponsorship of No. 20 IndyCar


The Air Force will not move forward as sponsor of the No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevy shared by its team owner and Conor Daly, who brought the military branch to ECR after stops at Dale Coyne Racing and Andretti Autosport with Air Force funding. “They are entirely out of IndyCar,” Daly told Racer. “We actually got this decision a little while ago.”