Misawa B-1

AFGSC’s New Plan to Deploy Bombers Across the Globe

Air Force Global Strike Command will regularly rotate a small number of bombers to the Pacific and Middle East theaters to maintain a regular deterrence presence and to conduct combat operations as needed, but it will no longer operate out of bases such as al-Udeid Air Base, Qatar, or Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, for extended periods. The move keeps USAF strategically relevant and operationally unpredictable, AFGSC boss Gen. Timothy Ray said during an AFA Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies virtual event April 29. “We can come and go anytime they need us, we don’t need to be there physically,” Ray said.

USAF Launches Hypersonic Cruise Missile Effort

The Air Force is spearheading development of the Defense Department’s first hypersonic cruise missile. The service on April 27 reached out to industry to seek input on a “solid rocket-boosted, air-breathing, hypersonic, conventional cruise missile” that can be launched from existing fighters and bombers. Air Force acquisition boss Will Roper said April 29 the program will leverage work already done by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and Air Force Research Laboratory, and partner with industry to speed the design into production. “We would absolutely pursue this the exact same way we did with [the Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon and Air-Launched Rapid-Response Weapon] as a rapid prototyping … program which is not encumbered by unobtainable requirements,” Roper said.
97 AMW receives KC-46 Pegasus

Boeing: KC-46 Remote Vision System to Cost $551 Million

Boeing expects to spend $551 million of its own money on the design and implementation of fixes to the KC-46 Remote Vision System, as part of a new $827 million charge on the aircraft, the company announced April 29. The Air Force and Boeing early this month announced “Remote Vision System 2.0,” an agreement to replace the cameras and other significant components of the new tanker, which have been the biggest problem plaguing development of the program. The remainder of the new $827 million charge, outside of the RVS costs, centers around “productivity inefficiencies” and impacts of the company’s decision to shut down its Washington state facilities because of the new coronavirus outbreak.
Secretary Robert Wilkie

Wilkie: VA Didn’t Perform Clinical Trial of Hydroxychloroquine

The Veterans Affairs Department has treated COVID-19-positive veterans with the controversial drug hydroxychloroquine, but its use was in line with Food and Drug Administration regulations and wasn't experimental, VA Secretary Robert Wilkie said in an April 29 letter to Veterans Service Organizations. “Recently, a records review was posted on a public website at the request of the New England Journal of Medicine, out of one of our medical centers,” the letter states. “The review documented some initial findings on the use of hydroxychloroquine for treating COVID-19 that gained a lot of media attention. This led to misinformation about what did and did not happen at VA, and what the findings indicated.”

Virtual Events: Scowcroft Group’s Miller on Mitchell’s Nuclear Deterrence Series, and More

On March 23, the Air Force Association's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies will host a virtual Nuclear Deterrence Series event featuring Scowcroft Group Principal Frank Miller. At a time when nuclear modernization programs are accelerating around the world, proposals to recapitalize the U.S. nuclear arsenal are at the forefront of debates over defense spending. Miller will share his insights into the prospects for U.S. nuclear modernization programs and the value of nuclear deterrence in today's competitive security environment. The think tank will post event video on its website and YouTube page after the live event.

Radar Sweep

Snapshot: DOD and COVID-19

Air Force Magazine

Here's a look at how the Defense Department is being impacted by and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Aerospace Nation: A Conversation with the Honorable Matt Donovan

The Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies

Matthew Donovan, under secretary of defense for personnel and readiness, took part in a virtual discussion with retired USAF Lt. Gen. David Deptula, dean of AFA's Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies, for the April 28 installment of the think tank's "Aerospace Nation" series.

Air Force Procurement Chief: Three Space Launch Providers ‘Would Be Great If We Had Funding’

Space News

U.S. Air Force top procurement official Will Roper said he is gratified that an independent market study made public April 28 lends support to the decision to select two launch providers for the national security space launch program. “In a perfect world, we absolutely would continue with more providers” but that is not financially possible, Roper told reporters April 29 during a video conference.

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Subcontractor Dies While Working at Vance Air Force Base

Stars and Stripes

A safety investigation is underway after a man working on an elevator team died April 27 from injuries sustained at Vance Air Force Base, Okla. Taylor Lewis, 26, was working as a second-year apprentice as part of an elevator team with a company named thyssenkrupp when he was found unresponsive, according to a news release shared on social media by many local chapters of the International Union of Elevator Constructors, a labor union.

Boeing Announces Job Cuts

Inside Defense

Boeing's chief executive said April 29 the company has begun cutting employees, seeking to reduce its headcount by about 10 percent. In a letter to employees, David Calhoun said the company is facing a decline in its production rates and the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.

Boeing Defense to Surpass Commercial Side for First Time in More Than a Decade

Defense One

For the first time in 12 years, Boeing executives expect the company’s defense and space unit to outperform its commercial airplane business, which is reeling from coronavirus and 737 Max losses. Boeing’s defense business has not outperformed its commercial side since 2008, when the commercial market was still recovering from post-9/11 declines and U.S. defense spending spiked during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

One More Thing

First-Ever Air Force Women’s Fly-In Goes Virtual May 11

USAF release

Retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Lori Robinson will be one of the presenters for the first-ever Air Force Virtual Women’s Fly-In, which will be held live on the Columbus AFB Facebook page from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. central time May 11, 2020. With a nod to female aviation pioneers as the backdrop, the event, which is open to all Airmen regardless of gender or career field, helps Airmen create networks to learn more about experiences, leadership, and life.