The potential proliferation of hypersonic weapons highlights the need to advance a wide range of other technologies, including artificial intelligence, machine learning, autonomy, laser weapons and fully networked command, control and communications systems, says George Kailiwai III, director, requirements and resources (J-8) for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command.
The U.S. Air Force’s shift away from continuously present bomber squadrons in the Indo-Pacific area of responsibility has actually resulted in more bomber flights, reports Pacific Air Forces Commander Gen. Kenneth Wilsbach, USAF. In April, the service ended Continuous Bomber Presence missions in the Indo-Pacific Theater, which it had conducted with squadrons deployed to Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, since March of 2004.
Radio-driven electro-optic sensors, exotic molecular materials and bugs that repair runways are just some of the technologies the Air Force is looking at to help it retain air supremacy in the future. Partnerships with industry and academia are central to this research, but the service is directing efforts to meet goals established in the most recent National Defense Strategy.
The Defense Department reported on October 26 that it had awarded a $20 million per year contract to Texas A&M University's Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) to establish and manage the University Consortium for Applied Hypersonics, known as UCAH. The award has a base year and four additional optional years of $20 million, with a total value of up to $100 million.
Battelle Memorial Institute, Columbus, Ohio, has been awarded a $46,302,000 cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the manufacturing of carbon-carbon (C-C) composites for hypersonic applications initiative to create a stronger, broader supply base for C-C composites positioned to meet current and future Department of Defense hypersonic systems’ requirements. Technical efforts under the scope of this initiative will be structured to develop C-C composite manufacturing technologies that enable the production at higher rates and quality and at reduced cost and schedule. Work will be performed at Battelle Memorial Institute in Columbus, Ohio, and is expected to be completed by September 25, 2027.
The Boeing Co., St. Louis, Missouri, has been awarded a $13,000,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the research and development for adaptive and robust control for hypersonic engagement research effort. The five-year contract will support research and development to comprehend and address impacts of complex flight environments on advanced weapon systems. Work will be performed in St. Louis, and is expected to be completed March 2025 for the initial task order. This award is the result of a competitive acquisition and one offer was received. Fiscal 2020 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $760,000 are being obligated at the time of award.
The U.S. Department of Defense successfully tested a hypersonic glide body in a flight experiment held at the Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai, Hawaii.
This event is a major milestone toward the department’s goal of fielding hypersonic warfighting capabilities in the early- to mid-2020s.
The U.S. Army its transforming its Department of the Army’s Management Office-Cyber (DAMO-CY) to include a wider range of joint all-domain operations capabilities.
Col. Jay Chapman, USA, division chief, Mission Command, in the Army CIO/G-6 office, revealed the change at a February 13 luncheon event in Arlington, Virginia, hosted by the AFCEA Washington, D.C. chapter.
ECS Federal LLC, Fairfax, Virginia, was awarded an $85,422,289 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for research and development of artificial intelligence algorithms. Bids were solicited via the internet with one received. Work will be performed in Fairfax, Virginia, with an estimated completion date of January 26, 2023. Fiscal year 2020 research, development, test and evaluation funds, Army in the amount of $85,422,289 were obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity (W911QX-20-C-0019).
Released this week, the Army’s Fiscal Year 2021 budget request of $178 billion adds focus to supporting Joint all-domain operations. While the Army’s funding for FY 2017-2018 centered on readiness and recovery, addressing "must-pay" bills and filling gaps in its force structure, the Army’s heavy focus for FY 2019-2020 is on increasing lethality and implementing six modernization priorities. For FY 2021, however, the service is shifting to support the U.S.
As part of Sandia National Laboratories' quest to develop hypersonic solutions, a group of university students working at the labs this summer developed autonomy and artificial intelligence capabilities for hypersonic flight systems. They tested the capabilities on unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs.
Tucson-based Raytheon Company announced that it would be a subcontractor helping to enhance the flight performance of the Army's hypersonic weapon glide body. Under Dynetics Corporation contracts with the service, Raytheon will build and deliver the control, actuation and power-conditioning subassemblies that control flight of the Army's new Common-Hypersonic Glide Body program. Raytheon will also help assemble and test the new glide body under the Dynetics Corporation contracts.
University of Dayton Research Institute, Dayton, Ohio, has been awarded a $9,845,965 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the development of Hypersonic Vehicle Flight Test Structure. The contract provides for the design, fabrication, and flight testing of the payload structure on the GOLauncher 1 (GO1) subscale hypersonic flight vehicle. Work will be performed in Dayton, Ohio, and is expected to be complete by August 2022. Fiscal year 2018 research and development funds in the full amount are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8650-19-C-2404).