Daily Report

Oct. 6, 2022
blended wing body

Air Force Plans New Blended Wing Body Cargo/Tanker Aircraft by 2027

The Air Force plans to complete testing of a full-scale blended wing body cargo/tanker aircraft within four years, according to the department’s new Climate Action Plan. The demonstrator could be a prototype for a future operational mobility aircraft or family of aircraft, and the plan suggests the Air Force may skip the so-called “bridge tanker” acquisition.
air force climate plan

Air Force Sets Goals to Slash Emissions Across the Board With New Climate Action Plan

The Department of the Air Force is aiming to slash emissions across its installations, non-tactical vehicles, and aircraft fleets in the coming years. It intends to aggressively pursue new forms of sustainable energy and to factor climate change into its wargames, operations, and acquisitions, according to a new action plan. The DAF’s Climate Action Plan, signed by Air Force Secretary Frank Kendall, lays out three priorities for the department when it comes to climate change.
North Korean missile

USAF, South Korea Drop JDAMs in Allied Response to North Korean Missile Tests

Four South Korean Air Force F-15s and four U.S. Air Force F-16s joined together in a show of force in response to North Korea's recent missile tests. The two air forces formed a combined attack squadron to strike the uninhabited South Korean island of Jikdo in the Yellow Sea. The aircraft dropped two Joint Direct Attack Munition guided bombs, successfully hitting their target.

Radar Sweep

Air Force to Start New Experiments With Boeing’s MQ-28 Ghost Bat Drone

Breaking Defense

The Air Force is set to begin flight experiments with Boeing’s MQ-28 Ghost Bat, a combat drone developed for the Australian air force that may help its American counterpart learn how to operate unmanned aircraft alongside fighter jets. Lt. Gen. S. Clinton Hinote, who leads Air Force Futures, said the service is “getting ready to take delivery” of a drone prototype through the Pentagon’s research and engineering office.

Space Force’s Digital Push Focuses on ‘Spaceverse’

C4ISRNET

Last fall, the Space Force gave defense companies an unprecedented look at its initial plan to make missile warning satellites more resilient against potential threats from China. The business fair was unique in a few ways. It offered the industry a deeper understanding of the challenges the service expects to face over the next few decades as adversaries advance space and missile technology and test on-orbit weapons. It also paired that analysis with a roadmap of the capabilities the Space Force thinks it needs to protect against these growing threats.

Afghan Pilot Who Bombed the Taliban Now Flying Recon to Combat US Wildfires

Military.com

Former Afghan Air Force Maj. Samimullah Samim, one of the thousands of Afghans who ran the gauntlet of Taliban checkpoints and the deadly chaos at the Kabul airport gates to escape to the U.S. in late August 2021, is still in the fight. But rather than bombing and strafing Taliban positions as he did in the AAF, he's targeting fires in the Pacific Northwest, using his piloting skills to combat a pressing threat in his adopted country.

US Says Hackers Attacked Defense Organization, Stole Sensitive Info

Defense News

Hackers infiltrated a defense industrial base organization, maintained “persistent, long-term” access to its network, and absconded with sensitive data, U.S. government agencies said. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency responded to malicious activity from November 2021 to January 2022, according to an advisory published by the Department of Homeland Security division and its partners at the National Security Agency and the FBI. The targeted organization—most likely a defense contractor—was not named.

New Space Force Team to Streamline ‘Onboarding’ New Tech for Operational Use

Breaking Defense

The Space Force has put together a new team under Space Operations Command to streamline the processes the service uses to bring already proven but still experimental tech more quickly into the hands of Guardians, Space Force officials said. Commander of Space Operations Command Lt. Gen. Stephen N. Whiting established the team, led by the Acting Deputy Commander General-Operations Christopher Ayres.

OPINION: How Should We Quickly Replace Downed Satellites?

Defense One

“For many years, there has been a debate within the space community about how best to rapidly deploy satellites in a time of need. Should they wait on the ground to be rapidly launched when called upon, or stored in orbit, waiting to be rapidly activated? The answer has become clear: both,” writes Tory Bruno, president and CEO of United Launch Alliance.

Navy Turning British Surplus E-3 Sentry Into E-6B Doomsday Plane Trainer

The Drive

Work has begun to transform a former U.K. Royal Air Force E-3D Sentry AEW1 radar plane into a bespoke training aircraft for flight crews of the U.S. Navy’s E-6B Mercury jets, the so-called ‘doomsday planes’ that act as airborne command posts for America’s nuclear deterrent forces. The conversion process continues the second life for a part of the British Sentry fleet, which once numbered seven aircraft. Three others have been transferred to Chile, which will use them in its original Airborne Warning and Control System, or AWACS, configuration.

UK, South Korea Join ASAT Test Ban, Raising Like-Minded Countries to Seven

SpaceNews

The United Kingdom and South Korea have pledged not to conduct direct-ascent anti-satellite missile testing, throwing their weight behind the U.S.-driven initiative. This came about three weeks after Japan and Germany joined the initiative, raising the number of like-minded countries to seven.

One More Thing

The World War II Story of the First Time US Military Pilots Encountered UFOs

Task & Purpose

In the final weeks of 1944, the crews of a night fighter squadron based in France started reporting some unusual activity in the skies. The first report came in November of that year. Pilot Lt. Edward Schlueter, radar operator Lt. Donald Meiers, and intelligence officer Lt. Fred Ringwald, all from the 415th Night Fighter Squadron, were flying along the Rhine River near Strasbourg. They described seeing a series of orange lights maneuvering through the air nearby. Neither ground-based radar nor their own onboard equipment registered anything, and any attempts to fly closer to the lights proved futile.

This Day in Airpower
Celebrating 75 Years of Air and Space Power