Special Fund Could Solve Nuclear Budget Problem, Goldfein Says

By Steve Trimble Jul 01, 2020
Future defense budgets can't afford to modernize nuclear and conventional weapons simultaneously, so the head of the U.S. Air Force has suggested an alternative financing approach to solve the problem.
Missile Defense & Weapons

Lawmaker Pushes USAF To Install Radar On A-10

Jul 01, 2020
Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) has submitted an A-10 synthetic aperture radar improvements amendment to the fiscal 2021 defense policy bill.
Aircraft & Propulsion

Lawmakers Resolve To Instill Space Launch Competition

By Lee Hudson Jun 30, 2020
The House Armed Services Committee proposes investing $150 million in space technology development in the chairman’s mark of the fiscal 2021 defense policy bill.

Space Force Unveils New Acquisition, Operations, Training Commands

By Lee Hudson Jun 30, 2020
The Pentagon has finalized the U.S. Space Force’s organizational structure for echelons below the headquarters level, and has announced sweeping changes for the space acquisition structure.
Budget, Policy & Operations

Armed Overwatch Program Hits Snag On First Contact With Capitol Hill

By Steve Trimble Jun 27, 2020
An attempt by U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) to acquire a new light attack aircraft has met with sharp scrutiny in the program’s first…
Aircraft & Propulsion

U.S. Air Force Investigates Hypersonic Test Mishap

By Guy Norris Jun 09, 2020
A scramjet-powered missile developed under the joint DARPA/U.S. Air Force Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept (HAWC) program was destroyed in a recent test accident, Aviation Week has learned. 
Missile Defense & Weapons

USAF Extends KC-46A Testing For Three Years

By Steve Trimble Jun 08, 2020
The U.S. Air Force has extended initial operational testing on the Boeing KC-46A for at least three years.
Aircraft & Propulsion

USAF Creates Competitive Pool For ABMS On-Ramp Support

By Steve Trimble Jun 03, 2020
The awards create a pool of contractors now eligible to compete for a rolling series of task orders as the Air Force stages “on ramp” demonstrations for new Advanced Battle Management System technologies.
Sensors & Electronic Warfare

Weekly Debrief: U.S. Air Force’s Gradual ABMS Transition Starts On The Ground

By Steve Trimble Jun 01, 2020
When discussing the U.S. Air Force's next C2 architecture, the temptation is to focus on the E-3 AWACS and E-8C J-Stars. Less attention is paid to the ground-based, and in many ways more powerful, corollaries of both aircraft.
Sensors & Electronic Warfare

USAF Opens Bidding Phase Of B-52 Re-Engine Competition

By Steve Trimble May 20, 2020
The request for proposals invites bids from GE Aviation, Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce to supply 608 engines.
Aircraft & Propulsion

F-22 Post-Crash Fleet Update

By Matthew Jouppi May 19, 2020
As the U.S. Defense Department prioritizes great power competition, demand for the Raptor fleet as the Air Force’s “silver bullet” air dominance force has never been greater.
Aircraft & Propulsion

U.S. Air Force Kicks Off Skyborg UAS Integration Phase

By Steve Trimble May 19, 2020
The U.S. Air Force has kicked off the integration phase of the Skyborg unmanned air system (UAS) program, with several contract awards worth up to …
Aircraft & Propulsion

X-37B Spaceplane Returns to Orbit

By Irene Klotz May 17, 2020
After a one-day delay due to poor weather, the 197-ft. (60-m) tall Atlas V lifted off from Space Launch Complex 41 at 9:14 a.m. EDT to deliver an Air Force X-37B test vehicle into orbit for a sixth mission.

USAF Kicks Off Early Study For Hypersonic Cruise Missile

By Steve Trimble Apr 28, 2020
The U.S. Air Force has taken the first step in an acquisition process that could lead to an air-launched hypersonic conventional cruise missile.
Missile Defense & Weapons

USAF Releases Draft Solicitation For Re-engining B-52 Fleet

By Steve Trimble Apr 24, 2020
The release of the second draft on April 24 by the Air Force Lifecycle Management Center moves the competition closer to a formal bidding phase scheduled to begin later this year.
Aircraft & Propulsion

USAF Bomber Chief Prefers Clean Sheet Design For Arsenal Plane

By Steve Trimble Apr 09, 2020
Gen. Timothy Ray, the head of Global Strike command, favors a concept not based on a modification to an existing aircraft.
Aircraft & Propulsion

Boeing Begins Fixing KC-46 Fuel System

By Lee Hudson Apr 03, 2020
Boeing has installed valves on seven KC-46A Pegasus aircraft plugging the leaky fuel system the U.S. Air Force has deemed a major deficiency.
Aircraft & Propulsion

Boeing, USAF Agree On Dramatic KC-46 Remote Vision System Redesign

By Lee Hudson Apr 03, 2020
Every facet of the problem-plagued Remote Vision System will be altered by Boeing for what the U.S. Air Force is calling "RVS 2.0."
Aircraft & Propulsion

U.S. To Declare Space Fence Operational

By Jen DiMascio Mar 27, 2020
Made by Lockheed Martin, Space Fence is expected to vastly increase the number of objects in orbit that can be tracked from Earth.
Space Symposium

New USAF Materials Hint At High-Altitude Role For B-21

By Steve Trimble Mar 27, 2020
The design of the Northrop Grumman B-21’s trailing edge has led to speculation about a high-altitude role for the secretive stealth bomber, and new U.S. Air Force statements appear to confirm that analysis. 
Aircraft & Propulsion

USAF Member Tests Positive For COVID-19

By Lee Hudson Mar 20, 2020
A U.S. Air Force active duty member who works for the Defense Health Agency has tested positive for COVID-19.
Budget, Policy & Operations

USAF Scrambles To Acquire G550s, Fearing Line Shutdown

By Steve Trimble Mar 12, 2020
The U.S. Air Force is looking to complete the EC-37B Compass Call acquisition program in advance of a possible production line shutdown.
Aircraft & Propulsion

First VC-25B Enters Structural Modification Phase

By Steve Trimble Mar 11, 2020
The first change to the aircraft removes the skin and structural material in lower lobes of the forward and aft fuselage, the Air Force said.
Aircraft & Propulsion

Missile Warning, Defense Become First USSF Missions

By Lee Hudson Mar 10, 2020
“Soon we will release an inaugural doctrine” for the Space Force, Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett said March 10 in Washington.

U.S. Space Force Eyes Launch On Demand

By Lee Hudson Mar 10, 2020
The U.S. Space Force has a new launch goal, dubbed “Set the Pace for Space,” which aims to make launch on demand available for commercial and military customers.