F-35 gets precision target engagement with Raytheon JSOW missile

Raytheon Company and the U.S. Navy completed the final developmental test to integrate the Joint Standoff Weapon C onto the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter’s C variant, keeping the low-cost, air-to-ground missile on track for full deployment in 2019. The JSOW glide weapon uses a GPS-inertial navigation system with an imaging infrared seeker that can identify and track targets autonomously. JSOW C weighs 1,000 pounds and is effective against high-value land targets at ranges greater than 70 nautical miles, day or night, and in adverse weather conditions. “With JSOW C in…

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First-of-kind P-8A ground test saves $11.2 million, reduces schedule

Seeking to improve “Speed to Fleet,” a team from across the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD) test and evaluation community created, developed and successfully completed capabilities-based testing and evaluation in a Live, Virtual and Constructive (LVC) environment for P-8A Poseidon mission systems. “There were two firsts in this test event,” said David DeMauro, senior engineer with the Integrated Battlespace Simulation and Test (IBST) department at the time. “It was the first time ever that a successful dynamic Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) Interrogator (IFFI) simulation was executed on…

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Naval aviation depots improving aircraft production

Naval Air Systems Command’s Fleet Readiness Centers have eliminated the backlog of aircraft awaiting depot-level repairs and met production goals for the last two years, according to Martin Ahmad, deputy Commander, Fleet Readiness Center (COMFRC). Ahmad briefed the Naval Aviation Enterprise (NAE) and COMFRC’s recent and future initiatives at the Sea Air Space Exposition April 10. Motivated by a sense of urgency and our near-peer competitors, COMFRC is focused on delivering readiness, he said. “We have to win the fight, and to win it, we have to have equipment on…

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Abraham Lincoln Tests ATARI

USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) was the first kid on the block to get a new ATARI. No, not the iconic gaming system from the 80s, but a system designed to remotely land aircraft on a carrier. Abraham Lincoln’s friends, the other carriers, should be jealous. ATARI, or aircraft terminal approach remote inceptor, was, for the first time ever, successfully demonstrated during a touch-and-go on an aircraft carrier while conducting carrier qualifications and flight testing aboard Abraham Lincoln. ATARI gives Landing Signal Officers (LSOs) the ability to take over and…

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Harris Awarded $161 Million F A-18 EW System Contract

Harris Corporation has been awarded a $161 million contract modification to supply the next production lot of electronic jammers to protect U.S. Navy and Australian F/A-18 Hornet and Super Hornet aircraft against electronic threats. Harris will manufacture and deliver Integrated Defensive Electronic Countermeasures (IDECM) jammers for the F/A-18C/D/E/F variants, with deliveries under the new contract expected to be completed by May 2021. The Harris ALQ-214(V)4/5 is the key onboard electronic warfare (EW) jamming system for the IDECM program, protecting the aircraft from electronic threats, including sophisticated integrated air defense systems.…

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VP-8 “Fighting Tigers” participate in major Australian navy fleet exercise Ocean Explorer

The “Fighting Tigers” of Patrol Squadron EIGHT (VP-8) traveled to Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Base Edinburgh in Adelaide, Australia to participate in Exercise Ocean Explorer, Feb. 25 to March 7. The second iteration of one the Australian navy’s largest war games included complex and diverse warfare scenarios in Anti-Air Warfare (AAW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), and Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW) exercises over a three week period. Ocean Explorer featured a complex web of maritime warfare training, trials and exercises, all designed to challenge the Navy’s top warfighters to achieve sea control.…

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Sikorsky CH-53K Completes Critical Flight Envelope Expansion with 36,000-pound External Lift

The Sikorsky CH-53K King Stallion completed an external lift of a 36,000-pound payload at the Sikorsky Development Flight Center, achieving a maximum weight on the single center point cargo hook. This milestone marks completion of critical flight envelope expansion activities for the CH-53K as Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin company prepares to deliver the first aircraft to the U.S. Marine Corps this year. The CH-53K lifted the external load of 36,000 lbs. into a hover followed by flight demonstrating satisfactory handling qualities and structural margins. The gross weight of the aircraft…

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Boeing Receives U.S. Navy Contract to Modernize F/A-18 Super Hornet Fleet

Boeing [NYSE: BA] has been awarded a contract to modernize the U.S. Navy F/A-18 fleet, extending the life of existing Super Hornets from 6,000 to 9,000+ flight hours. In the early 2020s, Boeing will begin installing initial updates to the aircraft that will convert existing Block II Super Hornets to a new Block III configuration. The Block III conversion will include enhanced network capability, longer range with conformal fuel tanks, an advanced cockpit system, signature improvements and an enhanced communication system. The updates are expected to keep the F/A-18 in…

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U.S. Navy Maps Downed C-2A Greyhound

A Navy-led mission aboard research vessel RV Petrel has mapped the wreckage of a C-2A Greyhound aircraft that crashed into the Philippine Sea en route to USS Ronald Reagan, Nov. 22, 2017. Using the vessel’s side scan sonar and remote operated vehicle (ROV) to survey the aircraft from Feb. 2-5, the team determined the aircraft lies on the ocean floor in two main sections – cockpit and fuselage – and that the C-2A’s flight recorder or black box is still intact. Planning continues for an upcoming salvage mission, during which…

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VP-9 Transitions from Orion to Poseidon

With a new year comes unique challenges and pioneering opportunities. For the Golden Eagles of Patrol Squadron (VP) 9, 2018 brings a new aircraft, a new home, and a new beginning. After 54 years of relentless dedication and service in the P-3 Orion, VP-9 started their new year with the transition to the P-8 Poseidon. The P-8 Poseidon will be the fourth distinguished aircraft flown by VP-9 since its commissioning in 1951. Preceding aircraft included the P4Y-2 Privateer, P2V Neptune, and all variants of the P-3 Orion (A/B/C/UII/UIII/ and AIP).…

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Golden Sands General Contractors Completes Vertical Electromagnetic Pulse Simulator at NAS Patuxent River

Golden Sands General Contractors has successfully completed construction on the Vertical Electromagnetic Pulse Simulator (VEMPS) at the Naval Air Station in Patuxent River, Maryland, having batched, poured and placed over 1600 cubic yards of specialized conductive concrete. The 16-month long project included expansion of an existing site, construction of an antenna array featuring 150 foot non-conductive towers, paving an 81,000 square foot conductive concrete test pad with embedded wire array, and construction of a 1200 square foot pulser equipment building. The VEMPS facility provides the capability to conduct survivability demonstration…

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U.S. Navy aircraft enhance partnerships, highlight capabilities at Singapore Airshow

U.S. Navy aircraft are participating in the international Singapore Airshow Feb. 6-11, held at the Changi National Exhibition Center. Crews from the Navy’s P-8 Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft and an F/A-18 Super Hornet joined aircrews from the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Marines for the week-long exhibition. The Navy aircraft are forward deployed to the Indo-Pacific as part of the U.S. 7th Fleet and have routine presence across the region. Singapore’s biennial airshow provides an ideal forum for naval aviators and crews to engage with their U.S. counterparts along with…

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Unsafe Russian Military Practices

The United States notes with the highest level of concern the latest incident of unsafe Russian military practices, over the Black Sea on January 29. As confirmed by U.S. Naval Forces Europe, a Russian SU-27 engaged in an unsafe interaction with a U.S. EP-3 in international airspace, with the Russia pilot closing to within 5 feet and crossing directly in front of the EP-3’s flight path. While the U.S. aircraft was operating under international law, the Russian side was flagrantly violating existing agreements and international law, in this case the…

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U.S. Navy set to survey downed C-2A Greyhound

The U.S. Navy contracted Research Vessel (RV) Petrel to survey the location of a C-2A Greyhound aircraft that crashed into the Philippine Sea en route to USS Ronald Reagan, Nov. 22. Embarked with U.S. Navy Supervisor of Salvage and Diving (SUPSALV) personnel, the vessel will depart from the Philippines in the coming days and proceed to the C-2A’s location at sea. Once on station, salvage experts will deploy a side-scan-sonar (SSS) and remote operated vehicle (ROV) to survey and map the ocean floor. After the survey is complete, SUPSALV will…

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