Log on the Web
Week of October 3rd, 2010
By Kirsten Ashbaugh
F-35 Grounded for Modification of Software, Hinges
“Flight testing of all F-35 Joint Strike Fighter variants has been temporarily suspended until software that controls functioning of the engine’s three fuel boost pumps is modified, the Pentagon said Oct. 1.
“In addition, short takeoff/vertical landing-mode flight testing operations have been prohibited for the F-35B variant after post-flight inspections revealed an issue with the auxiliary inlet door hinge on test aircraft BF-1, said Lockheed Martin spokesman John Kent….” Read more.
U.S. Army Recommends Termination of SLAMRAAM
“The U.S. Army is recommending the Pentagon terminate the Surface-Launched Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (SLAMRAAM) program, according to a letter from the National Guard Association of the United States.
“In a Sept. 22 letter to Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, the Guard Association voices its strong opposition to the Army’s decision and urges Brown to ask Army Secretary John McHugh to reconsider canceling the program….” Read more.
U.S. Army Devises Tiered Requirements for GCV
“At the Oct. 1 industry day, held in Dearborn, Mich., the Army revealed more information on the program than they had since the original request for proposals (RfP) was canceled on Aug. 25.
“This time, the Army will accept reduced capability to achieve affordability and schedule objectives. However, the GCV still needs to be better than its best existing vehicle, the Army told industry reps.
“According to one company’s notes on the day’s briefings, the first tier will include vehicle characteristics that are non-negotiable. Dubbed “the Big 4,” they include room for a nine-man squad, the ability to add or remove armor and other capabilities so it can handle everything up to full-on combat, “significant” force protection, and a seven-year deadline to deliver the first production vehicle….” Read more.
Global Strike Command Now Operational
“Officials declared Air Force Global Strike Command to be at full operational capability Sept. 30, on schedule, and less than 14 months after its initial activation as a command.
“To reach that milestone, the command accomplished more than 700 action items identified by the secretary and chief of staff of the Air Force in 2009, when they chartered Global Strike Command to strengthen the nuclear enterprise by aligning all Air Force long-range nuclear-capable forces under a single command….” Read more.
Lockheed Martin Delivers First Production C5-M Super Galaxy
“Lockheed Martin completed delivery of the first production C-5M Super Galaxy at a ceremony here today with officials from Air Mobility Command, Air Force Material Command and Dover Air Force Base, Del….
“The C-5M program calls for Lockheed Martin to modernize a total of 52 C-5s: 49 B-, two C- and one A-model aircraft through the Reliability Enhancement and Re-Engining Program (RERP). The program incorporates more than 70 changes and upgrades, including newer, quieter General Electric engines making the C-5M more reliable and 10 percent more fuel efficient than legacy C-5s….” Read more.
Northrop Yards Finds a Buyer
“A small group of engineers and financiers previously known for promoting a low-cost class of new fleet oilers has emerged as the first publicly acknowledged bidders for the Northrop Grumman shipyard empire.
“‘We’re offering them a one-step solution for all the shipyards,’ Ed Bartlett, president and CEO of Cleveland Ship, said Sept. 28. ‘We’ve been under the radar, and we’ve decided that now’s the appropriate time to let the defense community and the capital markets know what we’re up to….'” Read more.
Japan Looks Into Buying U.S. Global Hawk Spy Drones
“Japan’s Defence Ministry is looking to buy three US-made Global Hawk spy drones to help monitor China’s military movements and North Korea’s nuclear and missile programmes, a report said Monday.
“Japan hopes to use the camera-equipped unarmed aircraft to boost the officially pacifist nation’s intelligence-gathering capabilities, watch remote islands and monitor suspicious ships in and near its waters, Kyodo News said….” Read more.
China’s Increasing Dominance
“After countless ‘dragon rising’ conferences and speeches, Australians have grown accustomed to China’s emergence as an economic giant to rival the US.
“But the past few weeks have seen something new: the most important shift so far in the 21st century…. In August it leapfrogged Japan as the world’s second biggest economy. And it has started to make that strength tell, beyond the worlds of factories, foreign exchange and trade, which it has already ruled for a decade.
“During the past few years, Beijing has talked of projecting its soft power, its cultural influence. But that was either a feint or was destined to be a flop.
“Instead, China is now exercising its influence in the world of hard power, where it makes other countries behave in the way it wants — and this is especially apparent in the seas surrounding China’s 14,500km coastline….” Read more.