AIN Defense Perspective » June 22, 2012

June 22, 2012 - 4:09pm

Lockheed Martin CEO-in-waiting Christopher Kubasik says the company is committed to righting ongoing problems with the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, which has doubled in unit cost and slipped in schedule by six years until full-rate production, now slated for 2019. Meanwhile, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) said the government is responsible for $672 million of the $1 billion-plus cost overrun from the program’s first four low-rate initial production (LRIP) contracts.

June 22, 2012 - 4:05pm
X-37B OTV-2 returns to Vandenberg AFB after its 469-day mission. (Photo: Boeing)

The second Boeing X-37B OTV (orbital test vehicle) touched down at Vandenberg AFB, Calif., on June 16 after a 469-day mission (USA-226). OTV-2 had launched from Cape Canaveral, Fla., on board an Atlas V launch vehicle on March 5, 2011. The first X-37B mission (USA-212) with OTV-1 was launched on April 22, 2010 and landed on December 3. Thus, the X-37B has now successfully accomplished two automatic recoveries of a vehicle from space.

June 22, 2012 - 4:02pm
The F-5M program (also known as F-5BR) has now delivered the first batch of 46 aircraft. Work has begun on upgrading another 11. (Photo: Embraer)

In a ceremony at the Gavião Peixoto plant on June 19, Embraer marked three milestones as part of its activities to support the Brazilian air force. The most notable was the first flight of the first A-1 AMX upgraded to A-1M configuration. The A-1M is a refurbished aircraft upgraded with a number of new systems, including Mectron SCP-01 Scipio multimode radar, onboard oxygen generating system and an Elbit avionicssuite that includes a new glass cockpit and the Dash helmet-mounted display. Embraer is modernizing 43 aircraft to the A-1M standard in a program scheduled for completion in 2017.

June 22, 2012 - 4:00pm
Dennis Muilenburg, president and CEO of Boeing Defense and Security (Photo: Boeing), is ‘planning for the worst’ as sequestration looms for the U.S.

Boeing has suffered less than other contractors from the reductions already made to the Fiscal Year 2013 U.S. defense budget. But as sequestration looms, the company “is planning for the worst,” according to Dennis Muilenberg, president and CEO of Boeing Defense and Security.

June 22, 2012 - 3:55pm
The BAE Systems Mantis is at Warton, being checked before  a return to flight planned for early next year. (Photo: BAE Systems)

BAE Systems announced this week that its Mantis Male (medium-altitude, long-endurance) unmanned technology demonstrator is to fly again, starting next year. The UAV first flew on Oct. 21, 2009, and undertook a short and successful flight trials campaign from the remote Woomera base in South Australia. The vehicle returned to BAE Systems Warton and has been laid up since.

 

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