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    US Air Force: Discussion and News

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    Militarov
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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Tue Dec 01, 2015 9:22 am

    "Boeing closed out C-17 deliveries and seven decades of aircraft production in Long Beach, California, with the departure of the last airlifter for the Qatar Emiri air force to the company’s San Antonio facility on Nov 29. The final aircraft is one of four C-17s that will be delivered to Qatar in 2016, and together with one aircraft that remains unsold and in storage in Texas, takes the overall production tally to 279. Not including the prototype, structural test airframes and the five undelivered aircraft, Boeing has so far officially delivered 271 C-17s, including 223 to the U.S. Air Force and 48 to international operators.

    The Qatar C-17 is one of 10 “white tails” for which Boeing committed to building without having a firm customer in 2013. Of the remaining aircraft, sales finalized this year include a single C-17 for Canada, which accepted its fifth in March, and the United Arab Emirates, which took two more aircraft for a total fleet of eight. Two additional aircraft from the final batch were also acquired by Australia, which formally accepted its eighth and last C-17 at Long Beach on Sept. 4. Other international operators include the U.K., Kuwait, India and the 12-nation Strategic Airlift Capability consortium of NATO.



    While Boeing continues to provide support, maintenance and upgrades to the airlifter fleet under the C-17 Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Program (GISP) Performance-Based Logistics program, the future of the production site at Long Beach remains undecided. Even though large sections of both the Boeing F/A-18 and Lockheed Martin F-35 are produced in California, the C-17 is the last series-built, fixed-wing aircraft to be completely assembled and delivered in the state. So the last delivery ends more than 70 years of full aircraft production at Long Beach and more than a century of complete fixed-wing aircraft serial manufacturing in California."


    Source: http://aviationweek.com/defense/boeing-ends-c-17-production-california

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Thu Dec 03, 2015 7:13 am

    US Military Just Ditched Plans to Launch Satellites with F-15s

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Sat Dec 05, 2015 12:17 am

    "Top U.S. arms makers are straining to meet surging demand for precision missiles and other weapons being used in the U.S.-led fight against Islamic State and other conflicts in the Middle East, according to senior U.S. officials and industry executives. Global demand for U.S.-made missiles and so-called smart bombs has grown steadily since their use in the first Gulf War. But the United States and a host of allies are now rushing to ensure a stable supply of such weapons for what is expected to be a long fight against Islamic State, whose rise has fueled conflict in Syria and across a swathe of the Middle East. U.S. officials say arms makers have added shifts and hired workers, but they are bumping up against capacity constraints and may need to expand plants or even open new ones to keep weapons flowing. That could create further log-jams at a time when U.S. allies are voicing growing concern that Washington's processing of arms sales orders is too slow.

    Islamic State's deadly attacks in Paris last month have added urgency to the U.S.-led bombing campaign against the group in Iraq and Syria. The campaign had resulted in 8,605 strikes at an estimated cost of around $5.2 billion as of Dec. 2. Meanwhile, a Saudi-led coalition including Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates and backed by Washington is carrying out a nine-month-old military campaign against Iran-backed rebels in Yemen. Gulf states are also supplying U.S.-made arms to rebels fighting Syria's government in that country's four-year-old war. "It's a huge growth area for us," said one executive with a U.S. weapons maker, who was not authorized to speak publicly. "Everyone in the region is talking about building up supplies for five to ten years. This is going to be a long fight" against Islamic State.

    The impact is palpable in Troy, Alabama, where Lockheed Martin Corp builds its 100-pound Hellfire air-to-ground missiles at a 3,863-acre highly secured facility surrounded by woods and horse pastures. Realtors are adding staff in anticipation of new hiring at the plant, and the large grocery chain Publix is opening a store soon. "What's good for Lockheed is good for Troy," said Kathleen Sauer, president of the Pike County Chamber of Commerce, adding that the expansion was helping a local economy where unemployment rates are already among the lowest in the state. "Look at our downtown," she said. "Almost all the stores are open and we have more coming in." Lockheed has added a third shift at its plant, which employed 325 workers as of February, and is now at "maximum capacity," said one executive familiar with the issue. The company announced in February that it will add 240 workers by 2020 and expand the facility, which also produces a 2,000-pound air-to-surface stealthy missile.

    Frank Kendall, the Pentagon's chief arms buyer, told Reuters this week there has been particularly strong demand for the Hellfire missiles. At $60,000 to $100,000 apiece they are inexpensive compared to many missiles and can be launched from everything from aircraft and helicopters and ships to destroy armored vehicles or punch into buildings. Kendall and other senior U.S. officials told Reuters they are working with Lockheed, Raytheon Co and Boeing Co. to ramp up production of precision munitions and potentially add new capacity. "We are watching that closely. We are looking at the need to increase capacity," Kendall said.

    SALES SURGING

    Defense shares have performed strongly in recent months on expectations of better results, and many soared after the attacks in Paris. Total U.S. foreign military sales approvals surged 36 percent to $46.6 billion in the year through September 2015 from around $34 billion a year earlier. Approved sales of missiles, smart bombs and other munitions to U.S. allies jumped to an estimated $6 billion in fiscal 2015 from $3.5 billion a year earlier. This year alone, the U.S. government has approved the sale of Hellfires to South Korea, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, France, Italy and Britain. In June, the U.S. Army said it had asked Lockheed to boost production of the Hellfire from 500 per month to 650 by November. "There are essentially waiting lists for Hellfire. They can't make them fast enough," said one State Department official, who asked not to be identified.

    Lockheed declined to provide any details about how it is meeting increased demand for Hellfires and other munitions. In addition to approved foreign military sales, many munitions sales are overseen by the U.S. Commerce Department and negotiated directly between countries and companies. U.S. weapons makers do not routinely report such sales, and do not break down revenues by specific weapons. Also in high demand, Kendall said, are Boeing's Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM) kits, which turn unguided munitions into smart bombs and have been used consistently to strike Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria. Last month, the State Department approved a $1.29 billion deal with Saudi Arabia for more than 22,000 JDAMS and other types of precision-guided bombs. Boeing said it boosted the daily production rate of JDAMs at its facility outside St. Louis by 80 percent in July to meet demand from the U.S. military and more than 25 other countries. Raytheon, one of the largest U.S. munitions makers, declined comment on its missile production work. The company has a large missile production facility in Tucson, Arizona, which could potentially boost production, Kendall said.

    REACHING CAPACITY

    Kendall said U.S. manufacturers had been "very responsive," but some facilities were already reaching maximum capacity and it would take years for firms to make necessary expansions. He said the U.S. government could potentially chip in to defray the cost of new facilities and tooling, but that would be addressed on a case-by-case basis. It takes time for foreign and U.S. orders to be processed by the U.S. bureaucracy and translate into contracts for companies, but that is now occurring, stretching many facilities to capacity limits, according to industry executives, who were not authorized to speak publicly. Vice Admiral Joe Rixey, director of the Pentagon's Defense Security Cooperation Agency, said industry was keeping up with demand thus far but that pressures were mounting. "We are reacting to get it done," Rixey told Reuters. "We're working on purchasing capacity and shifts."

    Defense shares have been buoyed by a two-year congressional budget agreement that ensures stable funding for fiscal 2016 and 2017, share buybacks and growing confidence that a revenue trough is nearly over. Raytheon told analysts in October that its missile sales - which account for about 28 percent of overall revenues - jumped 11 percent in the third quarter and looked set for further growth in the fourth quarter. Lockheed and Boeing do not provide details about their missile sales, but they account for a relatively small - albeit growing - portion of their defense businesses, according to analysts. The long-term increase in demand is also expected to boost revenues for key suppliers such as Orbital ATK and Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc, which make the propulsion systems for many of the missiles. U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh said the U.S. military had increased its orders in recent years to replenish and expand its stockpiles, but more work was needed. He said Washington was encouraging its allies to do the same."



    Source and rest of the article: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-mideast-crisis-usa-arms-insight-idUSKBN0TN2DA20151204#kwHO54ID7ti4moqR.99

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  JohninMK on Mon Dec 07, 2015 3:53 pm

    Note the last sentence.

    Following a chain of deadly accidents during training exercises since October, the US Army has moved to ground around 1,100 aircraft for security checks. US aviation units were grounded for five days at 11 bases across the country on December 3, US Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) announced.

    According to a statement from the US Army Forces Command, the move is aimed at giving army leaders additional time to carry out checks on “aviation training procedures and helicopter safety precautions to manage risk and to avoid accidental loss of aviation personnel and equipment.” Paul Boyce, a FORSCOM spokesman, noted that all bases affected by the grounding are located within the territory of the United States.

    The decision was made after a Boeing AH-64D Apache attack helicopter crashed on a training mission on December 2, in the wake of two other fatal accidents in November.

    “I have a duty to ensure that we are doing all that we can to prevent loss of life and aviation accidents, and that is why we’re standing down to review our procedures and reaffirm our commitment to operating our aircraft safely and effectively,” General Robert Abrams, commander of US Army Forces Command, said in a statement. General Abrams has sent FORSCOM aviation heads to army bases to review flight-mission briefing processes, unit pre-accident plans, and aircraft maintenance procedures. Moreover, investigations into recent accidents are being carried out, according to FORSCOM.

    So far, since the beginning of the fiscal year in October, there have been some 14 accidents  involving helicopter crews, according to Army Safety Center statistics.


    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/us/20151208/1031390329/US-Army-Grounds-Helicopters-After-Crashes.html#ixzz3tfrlyfo8

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Wed Dec 09, 2015 4:41 pm

    "The U.S. Air Force's top space official on Tuesday slammed a new ground control system for GPS satellites being built by Raytheon Co as "a disaster" and said the Pentagon planned "significant" changes with the company to address the issues. General John Hyten, commander of Air Force Space Command, spoke after attending a session on the program last Friday led by the Pentagon's chief arms buyer, Frank Kendall.

    Air Force spokeswoman Captain Annmarie Annicelli said the Air Force would develop new cost estimates for the troubled GPS Operational Control System, or OCX, to reflect an additional two-year delay in completing its development. Air Force officials earlier this year said the program had an 80.5 percent cost increase, to $1.6 billion, and a two-year delay due to increased cyber security requirements and issues with the contractor's performance. Hyten, speaking with reporters after an event, said Raytheon had completed an initial system called Block 0 to launch and fly the satellites, but more sophisticated software was needed to take full advantage of all the GPS signals over the longer term.


    He said the Air Force initially underestimated the challenge of securing the system from cyber attacks and later had to revise its approach. But he said Raytheon also "did a really bad job" of systems engineering before it began developing software code. "The OCX program is a disaster, just a disaster, and it’s embarrassing to have to stand in front of people and try to defend it, so I won't," Hyten told the event. "When you start down a path and you basically can’t deliver and you keep pushing the system out to the right, and you keep pouring money at it, and the contractor does not deliver, you’re in a tough spot."

    Matt Gilligan, Raytheon's vice president for navigation and environmental solutions, said the company was focused on continued development of the system. "We are fully committed to delivering, without compromise, the modernized GPS ground controls envisioned and required by the Air Force," Gilligan said in a statement to Reuters. Kendall last week told reporters the department was looking at a range of options for the program, including opening part of the work to a new competition. Neither the Pentagon nor the Air Force had any immediate comment on Tuesday on possible further steps to open part of the work to competition. The OCX system is to allow the Air Force to operate its newest GPS III, or global positioning system, satellites to help the military target weapons strikes, provide critical timing information and deliver critical services for industry. Lockheed Martin Corp's program to build the GPS III satellites also ran into trouble, but is back on track after delays involving a sensor built by Exelis Inc, which is now owned by Harris Corp."



    Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-raytheon-satellites-idUSKBN0TR1QF20151208#6MfdLvAgv8RowyYq.97

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:28 pm

    "The Pentagon's chief arms buyer has approved the next steps in a long-awaited multibillion-dollar competition to replace the Air Force's aging fleet of E-8 JSTARS spy and battle management planes. Frank Kendall, undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics, this week signed a memorandum approving the start of the so-called Milestone A phase of the program, Pentagon spokeswoman Maureen Schumann said on Friday. That paves the way for funding of demonstrations of the new aircraft, said two sources familiar with the decision. Three teams are competing for the work: Northrop Grumman Corp, which built the existing planes and is teaming with General Dynamics Corp; Lockheed Martin Corp, which is working with Canada's Bombardier; and Boeing Co.

    Additional details about the memorandum signed by Kendall were not immediately available, but a source familiar with the decision said the Pentagon's fiscal 2017 budget request would include funding for the program. Representative Tom Graves, a Georgia Republican, welcomed the news, calling it a "significant step" toward replacing the aging fleet with next-generation aircraft. "I am confident that the Defense Department understands JSTARS is a major priority for Congress and will complete the process of updating the JSTARS fleet in a timely manner," Graves said. The source, who was not authorized to speak publicly, said the Pentagon had reviewed alternatives and ruled out the possibility of using unmanned aircraft.


    Kendall met earlier this week with Graves and other U.S. lawmakers, who have pressed the Pentagon to accelerate work on a replacement for the existing fleet of Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System aircraft, or JSTARS, which has flown well over 100,000 combat hours and is rapidly approaching the end of its service life. Graves and 59 other members of key defense-related committees in Congress told Defense Secretary Ash Carter in a letter dated Nov. 20 that they were concerned about delays in the acquisition program since only half of the current fleet of 16 aircraft were combat ready at any given time because of required maintenance."


    Source: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-airforce-jstars-idUSKBN0TU2AO20151211#Ow2T8xmcwGg3sX41.97

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Fri Dec 11, 2015 8:37 pm

    "The US Air Force wants to vastly expand its drone program over the next five years by doubling the number of pilots and deploying them to bases in California and elsewhere to give commanders better intelligence and more firepower.



    The $3-billion plan, which must be approved by Congress, was unveiled Thursday after months of study that focused on a drone pilot force that commanders have described as overworked, undermanned and underappreciated. The proposed expansion comes as the Pentagon has intensified airstrikes on Islamic State targets in Iraq and Syria. Pilots and crews who operate the MQ-1 Predators and MQ-9 Reapers have struggled to meet a rising demand for aerial surveillance of war zones and other hot spots. “Right now, 100% of the time, when a MQ-1 or MQ-9 crew goes in, all they do is combat,” said Gen. Herbert “Hawk” Carlisle, head of Air Combat Command, which oversees drone operations. “So we really have to build the capacity.”


    Source: http://defence-blog.com/news/us-air-force-proposes-3-billion-plan-to-vastly-expand-its-drone-program.html

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Sat Dec 12, 2015 11:41 pm

    "Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) delivered the 2,500th C-130 Hercules from its production line here today. This landmark Hercules is an HC-130J Combat King II personnel recovery aircraft assigned to the U.S. Air Force’s 71st Rescue Squadron, which is part of the 347th Rescue Group. A U.S. Air Force crew ferried the HC-130J to its new home at Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Georgia.

    “This milestone delivery is a source of pride for our team and the global C-130 community,” said George Shultz, vice president and general manager, C-130 Programs at Lockheed Martin. “The Hercules is a global asset and versatile workhorse that is truly without equal. This delivery represents the C-130’s strength in numbers and its ongoing relevancy to operators around the world.” The U.S. Air Force has the distinction of accepting the first delivery of Hercules aircraft on Dec. 9, 1956. The U.S. Air Force is the world’s largest Hercules operator, which includes legacy C-130 and C-130J Super Hercules fleets.



    C-130s today are operated from 68 nations and the global fleet has collectively logged more than 22 million flight hours. The current production model is the C-130J Super Hercules, the airlifter of choice for 16 nations and 19 different operators. The Super Hercules worldwide fleet has more than 1.3 million flight hours to its credit. C-130J variants currently in production include the C-130J/C-130J-30 combat-ready aircraft; KC-130J aerial refuelers; HC-130J search and rescue aircraft; MC-130J special operations aircraft; and the LM-100J commercial freighter. To date, C-130s have been produced to support 100 different mission requirements. The C-130J is available in 17 different configurations. The C-130 Hercules is the standard for tactical airlifters, providing a unique mix of versatility and performance to complete any mission, anytime, anywhere."


    Source: http://lockheedmartin.com/us/news/press-releases/2015/december/lockheed-martin-delivers-2500th-c-130-hercules.html?utm_content=sf16273134&utm_medium=spredfast&utm_source=twitter&utm_campaign=Lockheed+Martin&sf16273134=1

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:05 pm

    US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  AlfaT8 on Thu Dec 24, 2015 5:50 pm

    max steel wrote:US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

    Bhahahahaha...... not this sh#t again, we've been down this road before not long ago even, i still remember the laser systems that were suppose to be installed on the F-35, and not to mention those drones, all in all wishful thinking at best. Rolling Eyes

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Werewolf on Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:36 pm

    Sure and in 2050 Lockheed Martin will propose the Death Star project and 2052 the entire country will stop existing.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:52 pm

    max steel wrote:US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

    Took them literally 50 years of research to place that tiny useless piece of s.hit LaWS on 1 ship and suddenly in 4 they will make "laser weapons" available for aviation? Right.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Solncepek on Fri Dec 25, 2015 3:59 am

    max steel wrote:US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

    US to Begin Testing Powerful Airborne Laser Weapons

    01:23 24.12.2015(updated 07:30 24.12.2015)

    American defense contractor General Atomics is set to begin testing a 150-kilowatt-class laser next month, and the firm hopes to see Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) install the weapon on a gunship in the near future.

    Several other companies are developing laser weapons and 'we're looking at all of them,' Lieutenant General Bradley Heithold, head of AFSOC, said in an interview with Breaking Defense. 'The technology is ripe for application on an AC-130.'

    General Atomics, which developed the MQ-1 Predator drone, also envisions equipping the company's new jet-powered Predator C Avenger drone with a laser, derived from their High Energy Liquid Laser Area Defense System (HELLADS).

    Live-fire tests will be conducted at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, where the laser will be fired at a variety of airborne targets over the next 18 months.

    The weapon produces a silent, invisible, but extremely hot beam by pumping electricity through rare earth minerals to excite their electrons and generate energy, Defense News reported.

    'The reason that I want it on an AC-130 is, right now, when an AC-130 starts firing kinetic weaponry, everybody knows you're there,' Heithold said. 'What I want on the airplane is to be able to silently disable something.'

    Michael Perry, vice president in charge of the laser program at General Atomics, said providing the electrical power a laser needs aboard an aircraft and cooling the system are the chief integration challenges. But those hurdles are relatively minor compared to the feat of generating a laser able to burn holes in steel from miles away.

    'There's very little technical question that you can do this,' Perry said of Heithold's goal. 'The question is how much they want to do how quickly.'

    © Sputnik

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Fri Dec 25, 2015 4:04 pm

    Militarov wrote:
    max steel wrote:US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

    Took them literally 50 years of research to place that tiny useless piece of s.hit LaWS on 1 ship and suddenly in 4 they will make "laser weapons" available for aviation? Right.


    Mainland scientists are developing the world’s most powerful super capacitor that could make Star Wars weapons a reality.
    Prototypes of directed-energy weapons such as laser cannons and ray guns have been developed in many countries, but few have made it out of their laboratories due to their size and weight.(http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/1893973/china-moves-big-step-closer-star-wars-laser-weapons?utm_source=&utm_medium=&utm_campaign=SCMPSocialNewsfeed)

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Militarov on Sat Jan 02, 2016 9:48 pm

    max steel wrote:
    Militarov wrote:
    max steel wrote:US Air Force will have laser weapons on planes by 2020: Claims Star Wars technology is at a 'tipping point' - and there are even plans for a force field protection bubble

    Took them literally 50 years of research to place that tiny useless piece of s.hit LaWS on 1 ship and suddenly in 4 they will make "laser weapons" available for aviation? Right.


    Mainland scientists are developing the world’s most powerful super capacitor that could make Star Wars weapons a reality.
    Prototypes of directed-energy weapons such as laser cannons and ray guns have been developed in many countries, but few have made it out of their laboratories due to their size and weight.(http://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy-defence/article/1893973/china-moves-big-step-closer-star-wars-laser-weapons?utm_source=&utm_medium=&utm_campaign=SCMPSocialNewsfeed)

    Wont happen for decades. Railguns are one thing, but energy weapons are out of question for any real offensive use. They will enter service in means of blinding enemy optronics, disabling satelites, even defensive systems aganist light UAVs, PGMs etc. But to make it available for strike aviation? Maybe, in 50 years. Energy required is just insane.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  higurashihougi on Sun Jan 03, 2016 8:44 pm

    Militarov wrote:Wont happen for decades. Railguns are one thing, but energy weapons are out of question for any real offensive use. They will enter service in means of blinding enemy optronics, disabling satelites, even defensive systems aganist light UAVs, PGMs etc. But to make it available for strike aviation? Maybe, in 50 years. Energy required is just insane.

    Scattering is another issues. And optical-electronic jamming, for example smoke...

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  Werewolf on Mon Jan 04, 2016 3:52 am

    We won't see such things in next 100 years. We are at a point where science has come to a hault of progress we have to much troubles to deal with dogmatic laws put down on us that you will not see such a progress of Star Wars or whatever in near to 2 centuries into future.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  JohninMK on Mon Jan 04, 2016 5:47 am

    Fascinating time lapse video showing the production process making a F-18. No doubt they have checked it out over at Sukhoi.

    https://www.facebook.com/boeingstore/videos/136212369772998/

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  higurashihougi on Mon Jan 04, 2016 8:01 am

    Werewolf wrote:We won't see such things in next 100 years. We are at a point where science has come to a hault of progress we have to much troubles to deal with dogmatic laws put down on us that you will not see such a progress of Star Wars or whatever in near to 2 centuries into future.

    We still have Russia, Germany and their brethen as the stronghold of science and technology, so worry not.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Tue Jan 05, 2016 12:57 pm

    Setting the Standard for 3-D Printed Rocket Engines


    Aerojet Rocketdyne received a $6 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to define the standards that will be used to qualify additively manufactured components for use in liquid-fueled rocket engine applications.

    The award is part of the U.S. Air Force Booster Propulsion Technology Maturation Broad Agency Announcement, which is part of a comprehensive Air Force plan to transition off the Russian-made RD-180 engines currently used on the Atlas V launch vehicle.

    Aerojet Rocketdyne will draw upon its extensive experience with additive manufacturing, often referred to as 3-D printing, to establish the standards to qualify 3-D printed rocket engine components for flight.

    “New liquid rocket engine designs—like the AR1 engine we are building to replace the Russian-made RD-180
    —are increasingly taking advantage of 3-D printing technology because it reduces the amount of time and money required to build these complex components,” said Julie Van Kleeck, vice president of Advanced Space & Launch Programs at Aerojet Rocketdyne. “It is imperative that engine manufacturers understand the qualification methodology for this revolutionary technology because of the criticality of the assets they help launch into space.”

    The use of additive manufacturing technology reduces the cost to produce components, shortens build times and provides flexibility to engineers to design components that were once impossible to build using traditional manufacturing techniques. This program will define the rigorous engineering and inspection processes to be followed when producing and testing 3-D printed components to assure that they meet the stringent requirements of aerospace systems.

    Aerojet Rocketdyne has a long history of developing new materials and manufacturing processes that support complex engine designs. In 2014, the company successfully hot-fire tested an engine made entirely with additive manufacturing that had a thrust of 5,000 pounds, and in 2015 the company used additive manufacturing to replicate the injector of the gas generator used on the Apollo-era F-1 rocket engine to demonstrate that a proven design can be built at a competitive cost without sacrificing performance.

    “We are taking our seven decades of experience in building rocket engines, which represents more than 2,100 successful launches, and combining that with our in-depth knowledge of additive manufacturing to assist the Air Force in defining qualification requirements for this technology,” said Dr. Jay Littles, director of Advanced Launch Vehicle Propulsion at Aerojet Rocketdyne. “In fact, Fast Company magazine named Aerojet Rocketdyne No. 1 in its ranking of ‘The World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Space,’ because of the company’s advances in additive manufacturing.”

    “Incorporating additive manufacturing and the new qualification processes into our AR1 design will be essential to having an American engine for the Atlas V and proposed Vulcan launch vehicles ready by 2019,” added Van Kleeck.


    Aerojet Rocketdyne is an innovative company delivering solutions that create value for its customers in the aerospace and defense markets. The company is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets.


    Last edited by max steel on Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:54 am; edited 1 time in total

    JohninMK
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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  JohninMK on Tue Jan 05, 2016 2:40 pm

    Two industry heavyweights of electronic warfare have been chosen to equip special-mission Lockheed Martin AC-130J and MC-130Js with next-generation radio frequency countermeasures (RFCM) systems that can “detect, disrupt and defeat” anti-aircraft weapons, radars and other threats that use electromagnetic signals.

    BAE Systems and Northrop Grumman received contracts from the Pentagon in November to develop RFCM systems for the MC-130J Commando II multimission tanker-transport, and America’s newest gunship, the 105mm cannon-equipped AC-130J Ghostrider.

    Those contracts are worth $22 million and $33 million respectively, but their total value is closer to $400 million each, if all eight follow-on contract options are exercised in the coming years. The first phase of project wraps up in November 2016, according to the government contract announcement.

    This week, BAE trumpeted its selection, saying C-130Js equipped with its integrated RFCM system could “detect, identify, locate, deny, degrade, disrupt and defeat threats in the battlespace and beyond a pilot’s line of sight”. The system's exact range and specifications are closely guarded, but it is essentially an electronic warfare system designed to protect large transports like the C-130J from fixed and relocatable enemy air defenses.


    Much more at the link https://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/bae-and-northrop-developing-self-protection-suite-fo-420492/

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Sat Jan 16, 2016 3:09 am

    Boeing to Help U.S. Air Force Keep T-38 Trainers Flying Through 2026

    Boeing which has maintained and supported the U.S. Air Force T-38 Talon trainer fleet for 16 years, will do that for another ten years through a new contract worth up to $855 million.

    The company will work on avionics, cockpit displays, control panels, and communications systems for 456 of the aircraft as well as upgrading 37 aircrew training devices.

    “We are playing a vital role in preparing pilots to make the transition to modern fighter aircraft,” said Kurt Schroeder, T-38 program manager. ”Working with our Air Force customers, Boeing is keeping the T-38 mission ready for the next decade.”

    Originally manufactured by Northrop, the T-38 is the primary training jet for the Air Force and NATO nations. It first flew in 1959.

    The Air Force plans to replace the T-38 with the new T-X pilot training system. Boeing is teamed with Saab in competing for T-X. They will offer an all-new, purpose-built system that includes the aircraft and associated ground-based training and support systems.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  max steel on Sat Jan 16, 2016 5:02 pm

    U.S. Air Force to acquire more Griffin missiles

    The U.S. Air Force has contracted Raytheon to provide Griffin A and B Block II/III missiles and support.

    Under the contract, valued at $85.5 million, Raytheon is to provide test and support equipment along with engineering support in addition to the missiles. Work on the contract will be performed at Tucson, Ariz., and is expected to be completed by January 2017.

    Raytheon's Griffin missiles are capable of being launched from both air and sea platforms. The missile is available in four variants, including the Griffin A aft-eject missile and Griffin B forward-firing missile, which the Air Force will procure under the new contract.

    The first variant, Griffin A, is launched from a common launch tube, and is deployable from aircraft platforms including the C-130 Hercules. The forward-firing Griffin B is launched from a composite launch tube from rotary and fixed-wing aircraft. The U.S. Navy has armed the Griffin B on Cyclone-class Patrol Coastal ships.

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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  George1 on Tue Jan 19, 2016 5:47 pm

    Defense Contractor Northrop Grumman Planning to Fly T-X Prototype in 2016

    Northrop Grumman will fly a prototype of its T-X concept aircraft sometime in the next six months, ahead of an upcoming Air Force competition to replace the aging T-38 fleet used for advanced jet training.

    The Air Force is looking for 350 new aircraft to replace the T-38s, which entered service in the 1960s.

    Northrup is working with its aerospace branch Scaled Composites, a company it acquired in 2007, on an internally funded T-X demonstrator aircraft, Tom Vice, president of the company's aerospace sector, said last week.

    "We intend to fly the aircraft at a time which we believe aligns with the competition. So we will fly it when the competition dictates it," Vice said. "Obviously we're trying to hold on to the uniqueness of the design, but we will be flying that airplane probably in the first half of 2016."

    In February, Northrop reversed its plan to propose an updated version of the Hawk T2/128 for the T-X program, and instead decided to pursue an entirely new design.

    The prototype is being constructed by Scaled Composites. The company is currently working on 15 projects, a mixture of government and commercial models, company President Ben Diachun said.

    "We've averaged a first flight every year in our 34-year history," Diachun said. "Each new project we take on, we look at what kind of opportunity is there to go demonstrate a new technology or a new aviation milestone."

    The Air Force is on schedule to release a formal request for a September 2016 proposal, a contract award in fall of 2017 and initial operating capability sometime in 2023.

    The Air Force believes a new trainer is needed not just because of the age of the fleet, but because it cannot provide up-to-date training for pilots who will be flying the F-35 joint strike fighter in the future.

    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/us/20160120/1033400801/northrup-gumman-tx-prototype.html#ixzz3xjlRkOEF


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    Re: US Air Force: Discussion and News

    Post  JohninMK on Fri Jan 22, 2016 5:53 am

    Well, if a covert Russian objective is, by its activities and developments, to force the US to spend more on armaments and put more pressure on the US military decision and funding processes, it is certainly working

    The spread of the Daesh militant group and the build-up of Russia’s influence in the global arena have prompted the US Air Force to revise its plans to retire the A-10 Thunderbolt air support jet.

    When the USAF decided to sunset the A-10 the global threat environment looked different, he explained. The retirement plan was introduced in the fiscal year 2015 budget request, worked out before the rise of Daesh. The nature of the budget cycle forces the Air Force to plan its force structure two years ahead of time, he added. Often, the assumptions planned in the budget request change, and the USAF must be agile enough to adjust to new requests. "What happens is that life gets in the way of the perfect plan," Air Force Vice Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein told Defense News. "So when we made the decision on retiring the A-10, we made those decisions prior to ISIL [Daesh], we were not in Iraq, we were coming out of Afghanistan to a large extent, we didn’t have a resurgent Russia."

    Delaying the A-10 retirement plan is a key policy shift that the Pentagon will reportedly lay out next month in its fiscal 2017 budget request, according to a press report.

    Top officials had already said that the Air Force could shelve the A-10 retirement for a few years to meet commander’s demand for the close-in attack jet. The Warthog is still believed to be one of the most powerful warplanes in the US Air Force and beloved by troops for its Gatling gun. There is no replacement for the aircraft yet.

    According to Air Combat Command chief Gen. Herbert "Hawk" Carlisle, the service needs more close-air support planes to protect troops on the ground in Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria, and for possible missions in Libya and Yemen.

    The Air Force will face a tough challenge in the coming years to maintain vigilance but at the same time meet budget demands, Goldfein noted.
    The US will have to invest over $1 billion to keep the aircraft flying until 2028.

    Earlier, The National Interest reported that Washington could delay the A-10 retirement plan as it poses a threat to national security. The reported decision to postpone the plan comes after years of debate between Congress and Air Force policymakers. Senator John McCain, chairman of the Senate Armed Service Committee and an A-10 advocate, welcomed the reports that Washington will delay the retirement plan. "With growing global chaos and turmoil on the rise, we simply cannot afford to prematurely retire the best close-air support weapon in our arsenal without fielding a proper replacement," he said in a statement.

    The Fairchild Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II is a single-seat two-engine close-air support jet. It was designed for destroying tanks, armored vehicles and various ground targets. The jet entered service with the US Air Force in 1976, and its production was ended in 1984. Armed with a massive 30-mm rotary gun, the Warthog is one of the most effective and powerful attack aircraft in the USAF. The Air Force has long planned the retirement of the A-10, especially in the light of growing expenses for the F-35 program.


    Read more: http://sputniknews.com/us/20160122/1033547249/a-10-retirement-plan.html#ixzz3xyOaEkmJ

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