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.

J-20 Stealth Fighter Design Balances Speed And Agility 
China’s new J-20 stealth fighter design points to highly specific mission requirements.
Brazil And Sweden Close Gripen Deal 
Signature of a contract for 36 Saab JAS 39E/F Gripen fighters for Brazil—covering technology transfer, the development of the JAS 39F two-seater and a substantial role in the program for Embraer and other Brazilian companies—is a turning point in Gripen’s history, Saab officials say.
'Third Offset' Addresses Operational and Economic Challenges 
The Pentagon’s proposed new strategy—Third Offset—builds on operational challenges faced in the 1950s and 1970s—that took advantage of U.S. technological leadership to overcome operational challenges.
New Strategy Would Cut F-35s, Boost Bombers and UAVs
The Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments paper details the roles of new and existing systems in the Third Offset strategy; a larger role for the Long-Range Strike Bomber is one of several systems listed.
Darpa Sets Computer Chip Speed Record 
Dev Palmer, program manager at Darpa, says applications for the new technology are in their early stages “because until now the work has suffered from a lack of high-power sources.”
Opinion: Bumbling Caused B-52 Reengining Delay 28
USAF is taking a serious look at reengining the Boeing B-52. The question is not whether it makes sense, but why it hasn’t been done.
Nano UAV Gets Night-Vision Capability
Prox Dynamics has unveiled a night-capable version of its PD-100 Black Hornet unmanned air vehicle, believed to be the world’s smallest operational military UAV.
BAE Systems Amps Up Directed Energy Work 1
BAE Systems unveiled its Future Technology Demonstrator armored vehicle at the Association of the U.S. Army convention in Washington this week, with a focus on directed-energy technology.
Elbit Pushes Recce-Strike For Tactical Forces 1
Elbit Systems is demonstrating a reconnaissance-strike package for mobile land forces to U.S. users, including the special operations community, the company said Oct. 13 at the Association of the U.S. Army convention in Washington.
Rebooting The Army 
This expanded issue of Aviation Week’s Defense Technology International edition is the first of a series planned to coincide with major defense shows worldwide. This week, the Association of the U.S. Army convention and show opens in Washington—an event that grew rapidly during the 2000s as the U.S. committed soldiers and weapons to the longest land conflict in its history.
U.S. Army Wants To Field Integrated C-RAM Systems 
Combining assets to defeat the rocket, artillery and mortar (RAM) threat has proven successful, but other traditional threats (aircraft/cruise missile) and emerging asymmetric ones (unmanned air systems) still have been treated separately. The RAM experience suggested an integrated approach to defeating these threats and to the acquisition process. This approach unites sensor, weapons and mission-command components with a standard set of interfaces using a standardized set of networks to communicate—a meta-system for air defense.
Latest Blogs
Oct 30, 2014

Daylight Reveals Post-Antares Damage At Wallops

NASA’s Wallops Incident Response Team has reported on its initial assessment following the catastrophic failure of Orbital Science’s Antares rocket shortly after liftoff on Oct. 28, from Pad 0A of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia....More
Oct 30, 2014

Gabon Buys 12 Aravis

Gabon has become the third client for the 4x4 Aravis made by French defence company Nexter, after signing a contract on 29 October to procure 12 of these 12.5 ton heavily armoured vehicles....More
Oct 29, 2014

Poland and Germany Deepen Army Cooperation

Polish Deputy Prime Minister and Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak and German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen signed a statement of intent to increase Polish-German army cooperation on the fringes of the annual Bundeswehr conference in Berlin on 29 October. German Ministry of Defense photo by Thomas Imo...More
Oct 28, 2014

Virtual Training

The Euronaval show in Paris this week is not one where one expects to see demonstrations of people wearing strange electronic gadgets and sensors. That is usually reserved for homeland security shows such as Milipol or air-land shows such as Eurosatory....More
Oct 28, 2014

Turnkey Not Smorgasbord

In the competition for the most futuristic looking vessel at the Euronaval show being held this week in Paris I would put the clear front runner as the Fast Attack Craft on the Saab stand....More

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