Andrea's Feed
Sep 17, 2015

U.S. budget woes send ‘wrong message’ to potential foes: Defense Secretary

By Andrea Shalal

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (Reuters) – U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter on Wednesday warned that continued uncertainty about U.S. military spending levels would send “the wrong message at the wrong time” when Russia and China are rapidly advancing their technologies.

Carter told the annual meeting of the Air Force Association that failure by the U.S. Congress to pass a budget before the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30 could trigger a return to difficult spending cuts and a $38 billion shortfall in funds needed for new weapons, training and operations.

Sep 17, 2015

Pentagon sees risk in F-35 fighter’s complex logistics program

By Andrea Shalal

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (Reuters) – Long delays in Lockheed Martin Corp’s development of a computer-based logistics system for the F-35 fighter jet pose the biggest threat to the U.S. Air Force’s plan to declare the aircraft ready for combat next summer, the head of the Pentagon’s F-35 program office said.

“It’s the thing that worries me most,” Air Force Lieutenant General Chris Bogdan said in an interview at the annual Air Force Association conference. “We’re on a full court press with ALIS,” the Autonomic Logistics Information System.

Sep 16, 2015

Boeing rejects Aerojet Rocketdyne bid for ULA launch venture

, Sept 16 (Reuters) – Boeing Co
on Wednesday said it had rejected an unsolicited bid from
Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc for United Launch
Alliance, a 50-50 rocket launch venture of Boeing and Lockheed
Martin Corp.

“The unsolicited proposal for ULA is not something we
seriously entertained,” Boeing spokesman Todd Blecher said.

Sep 16, 2015

Aerojet Rocketdyne says new AR-1 engine timetable could slip

, Sept 15 (Reuters) – Aerojet Rocketdyne
Holdings Inc on Tuesday said it expected to complete
its new AR-1 rocket engine by 2019 to replace a soon-to-be
banned Russian engine, but the date could slip if it does not
receive enough U.S. government funding.

Aerojet Vice President Julie Van Kleeck declined comment on
reports that Aerojet has offered $2 billion to acquire United
Launch Alliance (ULA), a 50-50 rocket launch venture of Lockheed
Martin Corp and Boeing Co.

Sep 16, 2015

U.S. Air Force warns F-35 order review could damage program

By Andrea Shalal

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (Reuters) – U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff General Mark Welsh on Tuesday warned that short-term moves to revise downward the Air Force’s planned purchase of 1,763 Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) F-35 stealth fighters could damage the program and scare off foreign buyers.

“Let’s delay this discussion for a little while until we see what happens in the world,” Welsh told reporters at the annual Air Force Association conference, citing efforts by Russia and China to field more advanced fighter aircraft of their own.

Sep 15, 2015

Pratt prepping for big production increase on F-35 jet engines

, Sept 14 (Reuters) – Pratt & Whitney, a
unit of United Technologies Corp, on Monday said it is
working closely with suppliers to prepare for a large ramp-up in
production in coming years of the F135 engine that powers the
Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 fighter jet.

Bennett Croswell, who heads Pratt’s military engines
division, said the company was seeking to ensure it had at least
two suppliers for every major component, and was also carrying
out production readiness reviews of key suppliers, and the
companies that build parts for them.

Sep 14, 2015

U.S. Air Force upgrades to Northrop’s spyplane may cost half of prior estimate

, Sept 14 (Reuters) – Upgrades for the
Northrop Grumman Corp high-altitude, unmanned Global
Hawk surveillance aircraft could cost as little as half the
previous estimate of $4 billion, a senior U.S. Air Force
official said Monday.

Lieutenant General Robert Otto, deputy chief of staff for
intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance, said two key
upgrades were needed for the Global Hawks: a new electro-optical
sensor and an optical camera with a wider field of view.

Sep 14, 2015

U.S. Air Force cites ‘alarming’ Russian strides in air power

By Andrea Shalal

NATIONAL HARBOR, Md. (Reuters) – A U.S. Air Force general on Monday cited what he called “alarming” moves by the Russian military to beef up its air forces in the years since the invasion of Georgia in 2008 and to establish firm defenses around areas like Crimea.

General Frank Gorenc, commander of U.S. Air Forces in Europe, told reporters he was concerned about Russia’s moves to increase the quantity and quality of its aircraft and field unmanned aircraft.

Sep 14, 2015

U.S. Air Force still evaluating options for F-35 ‘block buy’

, Sept 14 (Reuters) – The U.S. Air Force
on Monday said it is still examining a possible “block buy”
that the Pentagon hopes to put together to lower the cost of
U.S. and foreign military purchases of Lockheed Martin Corp’s
F-35 fighter jet in coming years.

Air Force acquisition chief William LaPlante said the U.S.
military services and international partners are studying
options for such a deal, which would pool planned purchases over
a number of years to benefit from larger economies of scale and
drive down the price of the new stealth fighter.

Sep 11, 2015

Exclusive: Pentagon official cites concern about business outlook for ULA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A senior Pentagon official on Friday expressed concerns about Aerojet Rocketdyne Holding Inc’s reported $2 billion bid for United Launch Alliance (ULA), a 50-50 rocket launch venture of Lockheed Martin Corp and Boeing Co, and said the deal would require a careful review.

Aerojet Rocketdyne, which makes rocket engines, submitted the cash bid to buy ULA, the sole provider of launch services for U.S. military and spy satellites, in early August, sources familiar with the matter told Reuters on Tuesday.