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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
“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.
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.
Ukraine’s savvy application of different technologies in the ongoing conflict sparked by Russia’s invasion is informing how Pentagon leaders are thinking about and approaching the development of new and emerging capabilities for future wars. It’s also highlighting the need for robust support from America’s defense industrial base to sustain high-tech fights.
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.
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.