The high-energy laser installed earlier this year on the Airborne Laser aircraft was fired for the first time aboard the aircraft in a ground test Sept. 7 at Edwards AFB, Calif., prime contractor Boeing announced Monday. The firing is a significant milestone known as “first light” on the path to ABL’s airborne attempt to shoot down a boosting ballistic missile next year in a Missile Defense Agency test. “The start of laser firings marks the completion of a 10-month effort to install and integrate the high-energy laser and prepare it for testing,” said Mike Rinn, Boeing ABL program director. The ABL team plans to make additional ground firings of longer duration and higher power throughout the remainder of this year. Flight tests of the entire ABL weapon system will follow. The ABL aircraft is a modified Boeing 747-400F. Northrop Grumman builds the megawatt-class laser that is fired out of a nose turret. “We’re very confident in the ability of the high-energy laser to shoot down multiple missiles,” Alexis Livanos, president of Northrop Grumman Space Technology sector, said in a separate release Sept. 8. Lockheed Martin supplies the ABL’s beam control/fire control system; Boeing builds the battle management element.
Chief of Staff of the Air Force Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. provided a keynote address at AFA's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference on Sept. 14, 2020. Here is a transcript of his speech and the following interview with Air Force Magazine Editor-in-Chief Tobias Naegele.
The "Industry Perspectives: How to Align Private Sector with Requirements of the USSF" panel held as part of the Air Force Association's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference featured a discussion with Tory Bruno, Bruce Chesley, Blake Larson, and Rick Ambrose.
This video features Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness Matthew P. Donovan's "Strategic Plan for Personnel and Readiness" session from the Air Force Association's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference.
This video captures a panel entitled "An Effects-Based Approach to Force Structure Decisions: A Mitchell Institute Session" featuring Lt. Gen. David S. Nahom, Lt. Gen. S. Clinton Hinote, Lt. Gen. William J. Liquori, Jr., and William LaPlante from the Air Force Association's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference.
This video captures the panel entitled "The Right Mix of Stand-in/Stand-off Capability: A Mitchell Institute Session" with Gen. Timothy M. Ray, Gen. Kenneth S. Wilsbach, and Gen. Jeffrey L. Harrigian that was held during the Air Force Association's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference.
Sept. 30, 2020
"The New Ops Normal for Families" panel at the Air Force Association's 2020 virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference featured Sharene Brown, wife of Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr.; Mollie Raymond, wife of Space Force Chief of Space Operations John W. "Jay" Raymond; Rahn Bass,…
Air Force Secretary Barbara M. Barrett provided a keynote address at AFA's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference on Sept. 14, 2020. Here is a transcript of that speech.
Sept. 30, 2020
Chief Master Sgt. Nathaniel M. Perry Jr., Chief Master Sgt. Mary Polanco, Chief Master Sgt. Brian P. Kruzelnick, and Chief Master Sgt. Tony Whitehead joined a discussion on "Leading During a Pandemic: What Our Airmen Need to Excel" during the Air Force Association's virtual Air, Space & Cyber Conference. The…
Sept. 30, 2020
An MQ-9 on Sept. 10 doubled its missile capacity, carrying eight AGM-114 Hellfires for the first time, thanks to a new software upgrade. The 556th Test and Evaluation Squadron flew the Reaper at Creech Air Force Base, Nev., demonstrating the new capability, which is part of the MQ-9 Operational Flight…