Bill Sweetman

Bill Sweetman
Senior International Defense Editor,
Aviation Week & Space Technology

Bill's 40-year career as an aerospace and defense journalist has covered almost every aspect of the topic, from satellites to submarines, from infantry gear to classified ultra-stealthy bombers and from nano-UAVs to aircraft carriers. He was the first reporter to suggest that a funny Euro-Project called Airbus might be going somewhere, that the Eurofighter had a nasty streak in the low-speed, high-alpha envelope and that Boeing’s 7J7 and Sonic Cruiser were vaporware. Bill played a key role in breaking stories about the classified RQ-170 and RQ-180 UAVs, and the still-secret stealth helicopter used in the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound in May 2011.
 
He is a regular speaker and international conferences, is frequently interviewed or cited as an authority on technical issues - stealth technology in particular - by U.S. and global media and is the leading independent expert on the Joint Strike Fighter program. Bill’s groundbreaking work on stealth received simultaneous and detailed attention from the CIA and the GRU, the Soviet military intelligence agency. 
 
The 2013 Jesse H. Neal award for Best Subject-Related Package was awarded to Bill and other members of Aviation Week's defense team for their package "Balance of Fear: Iran, Israel and the Calculus of War." The same package won the award for Best In-Depth Feature at the 2013 Aerospace Media Awards.
 
Bill has also received Aerospace Journalist of the Year awards from the Royal Aeronautical Society in 1997, 1999, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2007.

Articles
Gripens For Argentina Seen As Unlikely 
Brazilian Defense Minister Jacques Wagner did not rule out a possible sale of JAS 39E Gripen NG fighters to Argentina at the LAAD defense show here, but industry sources still confirm that such a deal is hypothetical at best.
Podcast: India’s Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft Surprise
India hit the reset button on stalled contract talks with Dassault, opting for a government-to-government sale of 36 Rafale fighters. Our editors discuss what the deal means for India, Dassault and future combat aircraft competitions.
Elbit Subsidiary Shows New Gripen Cockpit 
AEL Sistemas, the Brazil-based subsidiary of Israel’s Elbit, is showing prototypes of the cockpit hardware planned for Brazil’s Saab Gripen fighter at the LAAD defense and security show in Rio De Janeiro.
Gripen, Submarines To Dominate Brazilian Budget 
The high cost and ambitious scope of two Brazilian military projects will lead to delays in the launching of other major projects, according to industry executives at the LAAD defense and security show here.
Opinion: Nearing A Laser Tipping Point 11
Star Wars lasers were intended to hit things that missiles could not touch. The new generation exploits different characteristics.
Embraer, Saab Sign Gripen Management Pact 
Saab and Embraer have signed an agreement covering joint development of the JAS 39E/F Gripen Next Generation fighter at the LAAD defense and security show in Rio De Janeiro.
India Nears Deal For 36 Dassault Rafale Fighters 4
India plans to purchase 36 Rafale jets in fly-away condition “as quickly as possible,” though both the Indian and French governments said further negotiations are still underway.
U.S. Navy Wants Internal AARGM For F-35 
The longer-range AARGM-Extended Range version of the AGM-88E Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile has to fit internally in the F-35A/C versions of the Joint Strike Fighter, according to a U.S. Navy request for information.
Lasers Technology Targets Mini-UAVs 2
Two German teams are working on a military-funded program that could lead to a world first: an operational air-defense laser.
World Wide Weapons 
Abu Dhabi’s IDEX 2015 defense show in late February highlighted the rapid globalization of the defense industry, with collaborative efforts that brought industries together from Europe, the U.S., Africa and Asia.
New Attack Aircraft Is Key To Paramount’s Expansion 
Paramount Group’s new Advanced High-performance Reconnaissance Light Aircraft is on the way to full production by 2017.
Compact Aerial Sensor Detects Maritime Targets 
New sensor combines a high-definition electro-optic camera with automatic target detection algorithms to detect small maritime targets.
Airburst Round Extends Lethality Over Wide Range 
CTA International developing an anti-air airburst round for use against airborne targets.
Opinion: T-X Points To Unhealthy Defense Partnership  5
The U.S. likes to talk about international defense partnerships, but the reality is that the home industry’s interests always come first.
T-X RFI Calls For Fighter Agility 
The U.S. Air Force has released the initial request for information (RFI) for a replacement for its T-38 trainer, the T-X Advanced Pilot Training Family of Systems (ATP FoS).
 
Blogs
Apr 15, 2015
blog

Briny Water May Challenge Future Mars Spacecraft Design

"These finding have implications for planetary protection policies for future landed spacecraft," according to the Nature Geoscience report. "Cl-bearing brines are very corrosive and this may have implications on spacecraft design and surface operations."...More
Apr 14, 2015
blog

Apollo 13 Story Is Still Gripping After 45 Years (1970) 2

The flight of Apollo 13 in April 1970 was one of the most dramatic events in the history of human spaceflight –- and ultimately one of NASA’s finest hours. For three days, the lives of three astronauts who had been bound for the third lunar landing mission hung in the balance....More
Apr 13, 2015
blog

NavWeek: Ballistic Bombast 14

China may be able to take out an American aircraft carrier with its feared DF-21 antiship ballistic missile (ASBM) without even taking a shot....More
Apr 10, 2015
blog

Lessons From Space Shuttle Columbia (1981) 10

The space shuttle was a magnificent machine, the most capable spaceship ever built. It was also a fragile monster that required an expensive standing army to fly, and punished the slightest inattention to detail in its preparation and operation with fatal results....More
Apr 8, 2015
blog

Photo: Water Cannon Salute For Inaugural Memphis-Dallas Love Field Service

Southwest Airlines inaugurated Memphis-Dallas Love Field service on Wednesday morning, opening up direct commercial service between the two airports for the first time....More

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