F-22 and F-16 Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex Flight

USAF Logs Fewer Severe Aviation Mishaps in Fiscal 2019

Fiscal 2019 proved to be safer for the Air Force than the year before, with nine fewer of the most destructive mishaps compared to fiscal 2018, according to Air Force Safety Center data. The service logged 14 Class A mishaps between Oct. 1, 2018 and Sept. 30, 2019, compared to 23 Class A incidents during the same time the year before. Of those 14 Class A events, the majority involved fighter jets: six F-22s, two F-15s, and two F-16s. AFSC noted one fatality in fiscal 2019.

USAF Ends Rescue Effort, Looks to Recover Lost Combat Controller

Air Force Special Operations Command has changed its search for a missing special tactics airman into a mission to recover his body. SSgt. Cole Condiff, 29, was a special tactics combat controller with AFSOC's 24th Special Operations Wing. He served in the 23rd Special Tactics Squadron. Military personnel have been searching for Condiff since he fell from a C-130 over the Gulf of Mexico during a static line jump in training Nov. 5. The Air Force and Navy are still conducting recovery efforts and USAF is investigating the incident. The Coast Guard suspended its search effort Nov. 8.

Lockheed Completes First ATHENA Laser Demo for USAF

Lockheed Martin for the first time demonstrated a high-energy laser weapon’s ability to take out multiple small drones for the Air Force at the Army-hosted Maneuver and Fires Integrated Experiment last month. The Advanced Test High Energy Asset, or ATHENA system, shot down multiple fixed-wing and rotary drones during the test, according to a Nov. 7 company release. Lockheed spokesman Mark Lewis said the exact number cannot be made public. “The Air Force has strong interest in systems with ATHENA’s demonstrated success,” he said.

Radar Sweep

Watch: SpaceX Launches Falcon 9 Rocket, Looks to Deepen Ties With DOD

CNN Wire via WTKR.com

SpaceX CEO Elon Musk spoke at a recent Air Force Pitch Day, a new type of event in which small-budget investments are made in various startups in the hopes of speeding up military access to new technologies. Musk spent a half hour on stage with Lt. Gen. John Thompson, commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center, in a discussion that was mostly geared for Musk to give advice to the roughly 60 companies in attendance.

Defense Intelligence Chief Paints Bleak Picture of the Space Battlefield

Space News

In a Nov. 7 keynote speech to a large crowd of space industry executives at the CyberSat 2019 conference, Defense Intelligence Agency Director Army Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley ran through a list of capabilities—including surface-to-air missiles, lasers, electronic jammers, co-orbital maneuvering satellites, and malware—that Russia and China have developed and continue to advance in order to target US satellites and ground control systems in a future conflict. China and Russia are also working on more complex “counter-space” capabilities designed to deny the US military access to its satellites, said Ashley.

Mitchell Dean on Hugh Hewitt National Radio


Retired Lt. Gen. Dave Deptula, dean of AFA’s Mitchell Institute, spoke with Hugh Hewitt about the need to recapitalize USAF’s geriatric aircraft fleet, nuclear deterrence, and national security strategy.

DISA Previews Big Tech Opportunities for 2020


The Pentagon’s IT shop released a list of next year’s contracting opportunities, including 12 worth more than $100 million.