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Jul 17, 2015

U.S. Marines nearing F-35B combat readiness declaration

WASHINGTON, July 17 (Reuters) – The U.S. Marine Corps’ top
aviator flew to an Arizona air base this week as part of a final
effort to certify the combat-readiness of an initial squadron of
10 Lockheed Martin Corp F-35B fighter jets, their pilots
and technicians.

Marine Corps officials were due to brief Lieutenant General
Jon Davis, deputy commandant for aviation, on a week-long review
which included operational and simulator flights in five core
mission areas, an inspection of the maintenance department, and
academics for both pilots and technicians.

Jul 17, 2015

Boeing to take $536 million charge for U.S. tanker issues

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) on Friday said it will take a $536 million after-tax charge in its second-quarter results to deal with deficiencies in the fuel system on the KC-46 aerial refueling tanker it is developing for the U.S. Air Force.

The Chicago-based company said the charge, which amounts to 77 cents per share, reflected higher estimated costs to complete development, certification and initial production of the tanker aircraft, while keeping the program on track for initial deliveries in 2017.

Jul 17, 2015

Boeing to take $536 mln charge for US tanker issues

WASHINGTON, July 17 (Reuters) – Boeing Co on Friday
said it will take a $536 million after-tax charge in its
second-quarter results to deal with problems that emerged during
testing of the fuel system on the KC-46 aerial refueling tanker
it is developing for the U.S. Air Force.

The Chicago-based company said the charge, which amounts to
77 cents per share, reflected higher estimated costs to complete
development, certification and initial production of the tanker
aircraft, while keeping the program on track for initial
deliveries in 2017.

Jul 15, 2015

McCain raises concerns about possible China bid for Micron Tech

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Republican U.S. Senator John McCain on Wednesday raised concerns about the potential national security implications of a proposed bid by China’s Tsinghua Unigroup Ltd’s [TSHUAA.UL] to acquire U.S. chip maker Micron Technology Inc (MU.O: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), and called for a thorough U.S. review.

“I am concerned by the potential national security implications of a planned bid by a Chinese state-owned enterprise for Micron Technology, the last major American manufacturer of memory chips,” the head of the Senate Armed Services Committee said in response to a query from Reuters.

Jul 14, 2015

Pentagon says ‘closely monitoring’ potential Sikorsky sale

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Defense Department said on Tuesday it was “closely monitoring” the potential sale of helicopter maker Sikorsky Aircraft by its parent company, United Technologies Corp and that it would evaluate any deal on a case-by-case basis.

Sources familiar with the situation say Lockheed Martin Corp, maker of F-35 fighter jets and the Pentagon’s biggest supplier, is the leading candidate to buy Sikorsky, the Pentagon’s leading helicopter supplier, in a deal that could value the business at more than $8 billion.

Jul 14, 2015

U.S., Japan ink deal for first batch of V-22 tiltrotor planes

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Japan has agreed to spend $332.5 million to buy an initial five V-22 tiltrotor planes built by Boeing Co and Bell Helicopter, finalizing the first international sale of the “Osprey” aircraft, the Pentagon announced on Tuesday.

It was the first tranche of 17 V-22s and 40 engines built by Britain’s Rolls Royce Holdings Plc that Japan plans to buy in coming years for a total value of about $3 billion, according to a May congressional notification by the Pentagon’s Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA).

Jul 8, 2015

U.S. Air Force leader sees Russia as ‘biggest threat’

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Russia is the biggest threat to U.S. national security and America must boost its military presence throughout Europe even as NATO allies face budget challenges and scale back spending, U.S. Air Force Secretary Deborah James said on Wednesday.

“I do consider Russia to be the biggest threat,” James told Reuters in an interview after a series of visits and meetings with U.S. allies across Europe, including Poland.

Jul 8, 2015

Bomber decision due in August or September: U.S. Air Force

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force still aims to award a long-awaited contract for a new long-range strike bomber in August, but the decision could slip into September, Air Force Secretary Deborah James said Wednesday, adding it was crucial to “do it right.”

Northrop Grumman Corp, maker of the B-2 bomber, is competing against team made up of Boeing Co and Lockheed Martin Corp for a contract that could be worth $50 billion to $80 billion to the winning bidder.

Jul 8, 2015

Despite blast, Spacex has time to show readiness for missions: USAF

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A Falcon 9 rocket accident last month should not eliminate SpaceX from the competition to launch a new GPS satellite, U.S. Air Force Secretary Deborah James said on Wednesday, since there would be “plenty of time” to test the rocket before any future launch.

James told Reuters in an interview that SpaceX remained certified to participate in the competition, expected to kick off in coming weeks. She noted that any future launch would not occur for about two years.

Jul 8, 2015

Exclusive: Lockheed, Textron final suitors for Sikorsky Aircraft – sources

WASHINGTON/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and Textron Inc (TXT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) have emerged as final contenders to buy United Technologies Corp’s (UTX.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) Sikorsky Aircraft business, which could be valued at around $8 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.

UTC is weighing offers from the two companies and may come to a decision by the end of the month, one of the people said.