Military Aviation News Archive

New Zealand Describes Defense Goals for 2013-2016

05/18/2013

The New Zealand Ministry of Defence only just finished awarding a $120-million contract to buy 10 SH-2G(I) Super Seasprite anti-submarine/anti-surface warfare helicopters from Kaman Corporation a week ago, but already the MoD is busy planning out its next series of acquisitions.

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Pentagon Asks Congress to Move $9.6 Billion to Priority Projects

05/18/2013

The Pentagon is seeking congressional approval to shift about $9.6 billion in this year’s defense budget to priority projects, mostly to pay for greater-than-expected Afghanistan war and transportation costs.The largest single request is to move $1.3 billion into Army operations and maintenance “to support funding shortfalls for U.S. Forces-Afghanistan operations,” according to budget documents sent to Congress today.

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Fiscal Fight Takes Toll on Military Readiness

05/18/2013

During fiscal year 2013, the Defense Department was funded by temporary measures, or continuing resolutions, that put a huge crimp on operations and maintenance spending. The stopgap measure set O&M budgets at the same level as 2012, and created a funding crunch for the military services as the cost of operations increased and appropriations were delayed.

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Last A-10s in Europe depart

05/18/2013

The last four A-10 Thunderbolt II attack aircraft from the 81st Fighter Squadron left Spangdahlem May 17, 2013. Twenty-one aircraft relocated to the United States over the past few months due to the deliberate and comprehensive restructure planned by the U.S. Air Force that has lead to the inactivation of the 81st in June. The loss of A-10s is a significant event for the United States here in Europe.

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On this day: American Starfighter aircraft breaks record flying twice the speed of sound

05/18/2013

The world airspeed record was smashed on this day in 1958 after a U.S. Starfighter aircraft hit an astonishing 1,404mph – marking a golden age in aircraft feats. The supersonic jet stunned the world – and especially America’s Cold War rivals – by becoming the first combat aircraft to travel at twice the speed of sound. It flew 196mph quicker than the previous fastest airspeed, set by a McDonnell F-101A Voodoo just six months earlier.

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Canada must rule its Arctic waves

05/17/2013

In the heady world of military procurement, the difference between an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and an F-18E/F Super Hornet is a matter of degree of performance: both could arguably do the job Canada needs in the air. But for ships, the matter is far more conclusive: you either build the ships you have to have, or you do not.

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Soldiers, Boko Haram In Fierce Battle

05/17/2013

Nigerian soldiers have begun an offensive against Boko Haram Islamists, raiding camps in a remote northeastern park, while more than 2,000 troops have been deployed to retake territory seized by the insurgents, a military source told AFP Thursday. “Our men raided some terrorist camps in the Sambisa Game Reserve,” in Borno State, said the senior officer who requested anonymity.

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US sending troops to Italy in case of Libya unrest

05/17/2013

The United States is sending a force of 200 Marines supported by two aircraft to Italy as a precaution against unrest in Libya. The force would deploy in case of an attack similar to the one on the US consulate in Benghazi last year. On Wednesday Italy’s Foreign Minister Emma Bonino said that the Marines were being transferred to Sigonella air base in Sicily. "It is taking place in accordance with bilateral agreements," Bonino told a joint session of the House and Senate foreign commissions.

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China Seeks A Nimitz Moment

05/17/2013

In China, government controlled media recently carried comments by a senior admiral in which the construction of a second carrier (as rumored, in a yard near Shanghai) was denied, but it was confirmed that a second, larger carrier was in the planning stage. It would make sense that as much experience as possible be gained from the first carrier (the Liaoning) first before finalizing the design of the second one.

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L-159s could be heading for Poland

05/17/2013

The Czech Republic is hoping to sell its L-159 Alca fighter aircraft to Poland, just months after an expected deal with Iraq apparently fell through. Prime Minister Petr Necas announced May 13 the Czech Republic was taking part in a tender that could result in the sale of the aircraft to Poland.

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Australia to stock up on US drones

05/17/2013

Five years after it walked away from a US Navy program to provide unmanned surveillance aircraft for Australia, the government has asked the US for renewed access to the technology. Giant American defence company Northrop Grumman has developed the MQ-4C Triton drone for large-scale maritime patrol tasks. It is the latest version of the Global Hawk that the Howard Government was involved with during the late 1990s.

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Hagel: It Was Furlough or Deepen Readiness Crisis

05/17/2013

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel ordered the furlough of 680,000 civilian employees for one day a week, from early July through September, to avoid taking deeper cuts in training and maintenance, which could have degraded readiness to the point of threatening "core missions," he said.The Department of Defense furlough plan will cut work hours and pay of most civilian employees by 20 percent for up to 11 weeks to save $1.8 billion.

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F-35A Successfully Completes High Angle Of Attack Testing

05/17/2013

he latest in a series of Lockheed Martin [LMT] F-35A high angle of attack (AOA) testing was recently completed. The testing accomplished high AOA beyond both the positive and negative maximum command limits, including intentionally putting the aircraft out of control in several configurations. This included initially flying in the stealth clean wing configuration.

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Russia to Deliver 12 More Mi-17 Helicopters to Afghanistan

05/17/2013

Russia will deliver 12 Mil Mi-17V5 military transport helicopters to the Afghanistan Armed Forces by the end of 2013, state arms exporter Rosoboronexport said on Thursday. The helicopters were options in a $367.5 million deal Rosoboronexport signed with the Pentagon in May 2011 for delivery of 21 Mi-17V5s. According to US officials, the deal could be worth up to $900 million including spares and servicing.

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The Killer Robot War Is Coming

05/16/2013

Drones are everywhere. They are blasting suspected al-Qaida militants in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia. They are menacing China. They are being shot down in Israel. They are hovering outside of homes in America and spying on their residents. And they are forcing us to rethink some basic legal principles—for good reason, because drones are making the old ones obsolete.

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More Mercenary Su-25s Slip Into Africa

05/16/2013

Back in February the African country of Niger received its first jet combat aircraft in the form of two Su-25s. These were received from Ukraine, which has a lot of Cold War surplus weapons, and refurbished these two ground attack aircraft. It is believed that Ukraine also supplied pilots and ground crews, at least until some Niger personnel could be trained to do the work.

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Pentagon urges safety valve for F-35 to help jet survive attack

05/16/2013

The Pentagon’s top weapons buyer is backing calls to restore a valve on Lockheed Martin’s F-35 jet that improves the fighter’s chances to survive a hit from a high-explosive round. Adding an improved valve “would result in the aircraft being fully compliant” with its operational requirements, Frank Kendall, the undersecretary for acquisition, wrote a lawmaker last month in a previously undisclosed letter.

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Glimpse behind the gates of Hurlburt Field

05/16/2013

Behind the gates of Hurlburt Field, Special Operations troops train for dangerous missions in enemy territory. Wednesday they offered a rare glimpse into their world, showcasing some of the planes they fly in combat. This is a CV-22 Osprey, it's one of several Hurlburt Field aircraft you'll see in our local skies, especially as night is falling. "Benefits of the Osprey are you can fly like an airplane and land like a helicopter, which no other aircraft can do," said Captain Jonathan Appleby.

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Air Force Commandos Will Have Fewer Aircraft, More Firepower

05/16/2013

The Air Force Special Operations Command’s fleet of more than 200 customized C-130 cargo planes will shrink by more than half in the coming years. Shedding older aircraft will allow AFSOC to save money on maintenance and to spend more on high-tech weaponry and sensors for its future fleet, said Maj. Gen. Kenneth D. Merchant, director of global reach programs at the office of the assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition.

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BELL HELICOPTER FEATURES AIRCRAFT AT SOFIC 2013

05/16/2013

Bell Helicopter is participating in the annual Special Operations Forces Industry Conference (SOFIC), held May 14 to 16 in Tampa, Fla. Bell Helicopter will feature an armed Bell 407 on static display, its first commercially qualified armed helicopter, a CV-22 model and 3-D interactive programs demonstrating the capabilities of the V-22 Osprey and Bell V-280 Valor.

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South Korea-Indonesia Combat Plane Venture Still On, Minister Says

05/16/2013

Minister of Defense Purnomo Yusgiantoro on Wednesday denied reports that a cooperation project between South Korea and Indonesia to develop the Korean Fighter Experiment (KFX) combat airplane was canceled, saying that it was merely put on hold until the new government in South Korea was settled.

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1st Boeing P-8I Maritime Patrol Aircraft Arrives in India

05/16/2013

The first Boeing [NYSE: BA] P-8I long-range maritime reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare aircraft arrived today, on schedule, at India Naval Station Rajali. The P-8I is one of eight aircraft Boeing is building for India as part of a contract awarded in 2009.

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Russia Puts Finishing Touches on Indian Aircraft Carrier

05/16/2013

The aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya has been put in a dry dock at Russia’s Sevmash shipyard for “cosmetic” repairs ahead of final sea trials and delivery to the Indian navy later this year, the company said. “The work is underway to repaint the hull under the waterline,” said Sergey Novoselov, head of defense export projects at Sevmash.

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Pilot Of Crashed Turkish F-16 Found Dead

05/15/2013

The pilot of a Turkish F-16 fighter jet has been found dead after the aircraft crashed near the Syrian border, the military said late Monday, without providing details of the plane’s mission, VoR Reported. “The debris of the jet and the pilot’s body have been recovered,” according to a military statement published online.

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Hagel Presents New Defense Furlough Plan; More Tweaks Possible

05/15/2013

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Tuesday confirmed a Pentagon plan to reduce the number of civilian furlough days this year from 14 to 11. Sharp budget cuts are forcing the department to require most civilians to take unpaid leave one day a week for 11 weeks, beginning July 8, Hagel said during a town hall meeting at the Mark Center in Alexandria, Va. As he came to his decision, Hagel said, he kept in mind the department’s core missions to ensure military readiness and protect the country.

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