Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Contract: Cymstar, $20.4M

Cymstar Services LLC, Broken Arrow, Okla., has been awarded a $20,368,605 modification (P00002) to FA8621-14-C-6338 for operations and sustainment support for the C-130J maintenance and aircrew training system devices, as well as material and travel costs to support the effort. The work will be done at Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark., Keesler Air Force Base, Miss., and Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2015. Fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of $20,339,878 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/30/14)

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Contract: Raytheon, $18.7M

Raytheon Co. Missile Systems, Tucson, Ariz., has been awarded an $18,744,712 fixed-priced-incentive-fee contract for HARM targeting system (HTS) contractor logistic support. Contractor will provide depot repair services and sustaining engineering for HTS pods, as well as a variety of other HTS sustainment-related services and supplies. Work will be performed at Tucson and is expected to be completed by Nov. 30, 2015. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of $13,236,118 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8675-15-C-0004). (Source: DoD, 12/30/14)

Monday, December 29, 2014

Contract: Cubic, $15.2M

Cubic Defense Applications, Inc, San Diego, Calif., has been awarded a $15,200,000 firm-fixed-price contract. Contractor will design, develop, integrate, and test hardware and weapons simulations source code software solely for the Royal Saudi Air Force P5 combat training system (P5 CTS). They will also provide contractor logistics support of on-site advice and informal training in operation and maintenance of Saudi P5 CTS equipment at King Abulaziz, King Faisal, King Khalid and King Fahad Air Bases in Saudi Arabia. Work will primarily be performed at San Diego and Fort Walton Beach, Fla., and is expected to be completed by Oct. 17, 2017. This contract is 100 percent foreign military sales and is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8678-15-C-0067). (Source: DoD, 12/29/14)

Contract: Jacobs, $42.4M

Jacobs Technology Inc., Fort Walton Beach, Fla., is being awarded a $42,383,852 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for the development of a launch test set complex for prototype testing and qualification of a launcher subsystem for the U.S. Navy and the government of the United Kingdom. Work will be done in China Lake, Calif., and is expected to be completed in December 2019. Navy working capital funds in the amount of $200,000 will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. Navy (90 percent) and the government of the United Kingdom (10 percent) under the foreign military sales program. This contract was not competitively procured pursuant to FAR.6.302-1. The Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, China Lake, California, is the contracting activity (N68936-15-C-0026). (Source: DoD, 12/29/14)

Sunday, December 28, 2014

KC-46 tanker has first flight

EVERETT, Wash. -- Boeing and the Air Force successfully completed the first flight of the KC-46 tanker test program Sunday. The Boeing 767-2C took off from Paine Field, Wash., and landed three hours and 32 minutes later at Boeing Field. The aircraft will receive its military systems following certification. Boeing is on contract to deliver the first 18 of 179 KC-46 aircraft to the Air Force by 2017. (Source: Boeing, 12/28/14) Gulf Coast note: Boeing won the tanker contract over Airbus Group, then called EADS, which planned to build the tanker in Mobile, Ala. Airbus later opted to build A320 family jetliners in Mobile. The assembly line will open in 2015.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wicked Wanda logs final flight

"Wicked Wanda" gets ready for its last flight.
Air Force photo
HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. – An AC-130H Spectre gunship named "Wicked Wanda" flew her last flight Dec. 19 and is scheduled to officially retire in 2015. The gunship, Tail Number 6575, has deployed in nearly every conflict the U.S. has been involved in, officially and unofficially, since the end of the Vietnam War. Eventually the plane, which has served for 43 years, will be displayed in the Hurlburt Field Air Park. (Source: 1st Special Operations Wing Public Affairs, 12/23/14)

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

AF range study under way

WASHINGTON — The Air Force has launched a major study into the future of its test ranges, one that could decide how the service runs its live-flight testing for the next 20 years. Steven Pennington, director of Bases, Ranges, and Airspace for the Air Force, said the focus is finding how much operational infrastructure is needed to enable current and future readiness. Pennington made clear that big ranges, such as Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., and Eglin Air Force Bases, Fla., won't be going anywhere as they remain vital for composite force training and testing of high-tech jets such as the F-35. Part of the need for the new infrastructure is the increasingly advanced technology being fielded by the service, and the real indicator has been the F-35. That jet challenges the traditional ranges in a way other jets have not. Earlier combat aircraft were not that much different, "but we've seen a leap of magnitude in the capability of 5th gen, and our ranges have to make the same leap," he said. (Source: Defense News, 12/23/14) Eglin is home of the F-35 integrated training center, where pilots and maintainers from all three branches and foreign partners are trained.

Larger Fire Scout gets sea legs

MQ-8C prepares to land on destroyer.
Northrop Grumman photo
NORFOLK, Va. -- The U.S. Navy and Northrop Grumman successfully flew the MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopter for the first time off the guided-missile destroyer USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) last week off. After more than a year of land-based testing at Point Mugu, Calif., the MQ-8C performed 22 takeoffs and 22 landings while being controlled from the ship's ground control station. (Source: PRNewswire, 12/23/14) The MQ-8C, which uses a Bell 407 airframe, is a larger version of the battle-tested MQ-8B Fire Scout, which uses a Schweizer helicopter airframe. The B variant has tested aboard ships on numerous occasions. Final assembly for both variants is done by Northrop Grumman in Moss Point, Miss.

F-35 deliveries target met

Lockheed Martin met its 2014 target by delivering 36 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters to the U.S. military, paving the way to collecting most performance fees. The U.S. accepted the last of the 36 jets Monday, the first carrier-variant built for the Marine Corps. Lockheed Martin has delivered 109 operational F-35s to the U.S. and partner-nations since 2001. Lockheed is building three variants of the jet for the Pentagon. Eight other countries that helped fund its development are Canada, Britain, Australia, Italy, Turkey, Norway, the Netherlands and Denmark. Israel, South Korea and Japan have also placed orders. (Source: Reuters, 12/22/14) The first Marine F-35C will be assigned to the Navy's VFA-101 "Grim Reapers" squadron of the 33rd Fighter Wing at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., to be used for F-35C maintenance and pilot training at Eglin. (Source: Global Aviation Report, 12/23/14)

Monday, December 22, 2014

Contract: UTC, $270.5M

United Technologies Corp., Pratt and Whitney, East Hartford, Conn., has been awarded a not-to-exceed $270,542,568 modification (P00128) to previously awarded contract FA8611-08-C-2896 for F119 engine sustainment. Work will be performed at East Hartford; Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.; Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska; Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; Hill Air Force Base, Utah; Holloman Air Force Base, N.M.; Langley Air Force Base, Va.; Nellis Air Force Base, Nev.; Sheppard Air Force Base, Texas; Tinker Air Force Base, Okla.; and Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2015. Fiscal 2015 procurement; fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance; fiscal 2015 Air National Guard; and fiscal 2015 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $88,535,000 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/22/14)

Contract: Raytheon Missile, $21.9M

Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, Ariz., has been awarded a $21,900,000 cost-plus-fixed-fee, cost-plus-incentive-fee, firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for advanced medium range air to air missile (AMRAAM) technical support. Contractor will provide technical services and analysis supporting the AMRAAM weapon system. Work will be performed at Tucson and is expected to be completed by Sept. 30, 2020. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2014 missile procurement funds in the amount of $847,230 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8675-15-D-0019). (Source: DoD, 12/22/14)

Contract: Raytheon, $491.5M

Raytheon Co., Tucson, Ariz., has been awarded a $491,478,068 fixed-price incentive firm type contract for Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile (AMRAAM) production Lot 28. Contractor will provide AMRAAM missiles and other AMRAAM system items. The AMRAAM system includes the missile, captive air training missile, common munitions bit/reprogramming equipment, and non-developmental item airborne instrumentation unit. Work will be performed at Tucson and is expected to be completed by Feb. 28, 2017. This contract involves foreign military sales to Korea, Oman, Singapore, and Thailand. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2014 Air Force and Navy production funds in the amount of $278,874,197 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8675-15-C-0022). (Source: DoD, 12/22/14)

First A350 XWB delivered

Rolls-Royce joined Airbus and Qatar Airways today in celebrating delivery of the first Airbus A350 XWB to enter service. The jetliner is powered by Trent XWB engines, the sole power plant available for the A350 XWB. More than 1,500 engines have already been sold to 40 customers. Sales of the Trent XWB account for over half of the Rolls-Royce civil aerospace order book. (Sources: Rolls-Royce, Airbus, 12/22/14) Gulf Coast note: Trent engines, including the XWB, are tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Pratt neo engine certified

Pratt and Whitney's engine for the Airbus A320neo family of jetliners has won certification from the Federal Aviation Administration. The certification is a milestone for the engine and the A320neo, scheduled to enter service in the 2015 fourth quarter. Pratt and Whitney's engine powered the A320neo when it took its maiden test flight in September. Pratt is a unit of United Technologies Corp. Airbus has listed more than 3,300 orders for the A320neo family as of November, according to the company's website. (Source: Reuters, 12/19/14) Gulf Coast note: The company's newest A320 final assembly line in Mobile, Ala., will open in 2015. Previous

UTC recognized by DLA

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – United Technologies Corp. Aerospace Systems was recognized as a Gold Tier supplier for the Defense Department's Defense Logistics Agency as part of DoD's Superior Supplier Incentive Program. UTC Aerospace Systems currently has spare parts contracts with the DLA that span across all of UTC Aerospace Systems' segments, including actuation and propeller systems, nacelle systems, air management systems, electric systems, ejection seats, sensing systems, landing gear, engine systems, sensor systems, and wheels and brakes. (Source: United Technologies, 12/22/14) Gulf Coast note: UTC's Aerospace System's aerostructures business unit at Foley, Ala., designs, builds and supports nacelle systems for commercial and military aircraft. The Foley site houses original equipment work as well as the Alabama Service Center, a maintenance, repair and overhaul site for nacelle components.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Contract: UTC, $47.2M

United Technologies Corp., Pratt & Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, Conn., is being awarded a $47,208,684 cost-plus-incentive-fee modification to the previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm target contract N00019-13-C-0016. This modification is for sustainment efforts and operations and maintenance services in support of Low Rate Initial Production Lot VIII F135 propulsion systems, including repair of repairables and replenishment spares. Work will be performed in Hartford (50 percent); Indianapolis, Ind. (36 percent); and Oklahoma City, Okla. (14 percent); and is expected to be completed in November 2015. Fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance funds (Navy, Air Force) and international partner funds in the amount of $10,911,399 will be obligated at the time of award, $6,720,832 of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract combines purchase for the U.S. Air Force (29 percent); the U.S. Navy (62 percent); and the international partners (9 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/19/14)

Dutch commit to 1st operational F-35

The Netherlands said this week that it will sign a contract in April 2015 for an initial eight Lockheed Martin F-35 fighters. In total the Netherlands is planning to buy 37 F-35s, with the first of the eight initial aircraft expected to enter service in 2019. Full operational capability is expected to be attained in 2024 with all aircraft delivered. According to the Dutch Ministry of Defence, the intended contract will stay within the stated total budget of $5.6 billion. (Source: IHS Jane's 360, 12/17/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Contract: Utilis, $200M

 Utilis USA, Fort Walton Beach, Fla., has been awarded a maximum $200,000,000 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery contract for commercial shelters. This contract was a competitive acquisition and 20 offers were received. This is a one-year base contract with three one-year option periods. Location of performance is Florida with a Dec. 16, 2015, performance completion date. Using military services are Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps. Type of appropriation is fiscal year 2015 defense working capital funds. The contracting activity is the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support, Philadelphia, Pa. (SPE1C1-15-D-1018). (Source: DoD, 12/17/14)

Contract: Lockheed, $34.9M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $34,893,266 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N00019-15-C-0031) for modification management of deployable spares packages for F-35 Low Rate Initial Production Lot VI aircraft. In addition, this contract provides for unit level augmentation and delivery of technical, administrative, and associated financial data. This modification combines purchases for the U.S. Air Force (46 percent); the U.S. Marine Corps (39 percent); the U.S. Navy (8.6 percent) and the international partners (6.4 percent). Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas (50 percent); Ogden, Utah (16 percent), Burton, S.C. (13 percent), Yuma, Ariz. (5 percent); Havelock, N.C. (5 percent); Rosamond, Calif. (4 percent); Valparaiso, Fla. (4 percent); Glendale, Ariz. (2 percent); and Las Vegas, Nev. (1 percent), and is expected to be completed in March 2016. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/17/14)

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

A-3 stand back in headlines

Nearly a year after Bloomberg News reported that the $350 million A-3 test stand at Stennis Space Center, Miss., would be completed then mothballed, the Washington Post and ABC News revisited the issue. The Post used the 300-foot tall tower as an example of NASA's "drift," or what happens when the federal agency has no clear-cut goal. In January 2014, Bloomberg wrote that Congress ordered NASA to complete the stand even though it no longer needs it. At that time, $292 million had been spent and another $57 million was needed to complete it. It was designed to test the J-2X engine's performance at high altitudes. But the testing requirement ended when the Constellation program was killed in 2010. But backers, including Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., point out that it might still be used under a new administration or by private companies that are planning missions beyond supplying the International Space Station. (Sources: ABC News, 12/16/14, Washington Post, 12/15/14, Bloomberg News, 01/08/14)

Contract: Northrop, $657.4M

Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., San Diego, Calif., has been awarded a $657,400,000 hybrid contract including firm-fixed-price, cost-plus-incentive-fee and cost-plus-fixed-fee undefinitized contract action for aircraft for the Republic of Korea. Contractor will provide four RQ-4B Block 30 Global Hawk air vehicles, two spare engines, and the applicable Ground Control Environment elements. Each will contain an Enhanced Integrated Sensor Suite. Work will be performed at San Diego, Calif., and is expected to be complete by June 28, 2019. This contract involves foreign military sales. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, is the contracting activity (FA8620-15-C-3001). Gulf Coast note: Center fuselage work on Global Hawks is done in Moss Point, Miss.

Titanium airline seats available

Three Frenchmen have created a titanium seat that could save airlines millions and cram more seats into jetliners. The seat, which consists of 30 parts and is pre-reclined by 18 degrees, is designed for use in the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 family of aircraft. Saving fuel is a key concern for airliners, and some have switched to lighter, thinner seats made by Germany's Recaro. But Benjamin Saada, Jean-Charles Samuelian, and Vincent Tejedor created Expliseat in 2011 and have now started selling it. Made from titanium and composites, it's 8.8 pounds, three times lighter than the Recaro seat. (Source: Business Insider, 12/15/14) Gulf Coast note: Airbus is building an A320 final assembly line in Mobile, Ala., that will open in 2015.

Monday, December 15, 2014

1st SOW getting new leader

HURLBURT FIELD, Fla. -- Col. William West, commander of the 1st Special Operations Wing and the installation commander at Hurlburt, will hand over command of the wing to Col. Sean Farrell, current commander of the 27th Special Operations Group at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M. The change of command is Jan. 6. West assumed command of the 1st SOW in July 2013. Farrell, born at Eglin Air Force Base, is a command pilot with more than 3,200 hours in the C-130E and AC-130H. He’s flown combat missions in Afghanistan and Bosnia. (Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, 12/15/14)

Trent engines chosen

Rolls-Royce has been selected by AirAsia X to power 10 Airbus A330ceo and 55 Airbus A330neo aircraft with engines and support worth $6.2 billion. The A330ceos will be powered by the Trent 700 and the A330neos will be powered by the Trent 7000 engine. In July this year, Rolls-Royce welcomed an initial AirAsia X decision to select 50 A330neo aircraft. The airline had previously ordered 25 A330ceos, powered by another provider, and this has now been altered to 10 aircraft, powered by the Trent 700. It's the largest order for the Trent 7000 engine since it was launched earlier this year. (Source: Rolls-Royce, 12/15/14) Gulf Coast note: Trent engines are tested at the Rolls-Royce outdoor test facility at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Contract: Lockheed, $169.3M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $169,335,580 modification to a previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm contract (N00019-12-C-0004) to provide Depot Phase I-IV services to support Low Rate Initial Production Lot VII F-35 aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy and international partners. Work will be performed in East Aurora, N.Y. (24 percent); Fort Worth, Texas (20 percent); Nashua, N.H. (17.4 percent); Torrance, Calif. (9 percent); Samlesbury, U.K. (6.5 percent); Irvine, Calif. (6.2 percent); Cheltenham, U.K. (3.7 percent); North Amityville, N.Y. (3.7 percent); Palmdale, Calif. (3.6 percent); Cedar Rapids, Iowa (3.4 percent); Orlando, Fla. (1.7 percent); and Grand Rapids, Mich. (0.8 percent), and is expected to be completed in June 2018. Fiscal 2013 aircraft procurement funds (Air Force, Marine Corps, and Navy) and international partner funds in the amount of $169,335,580 will be obligated at time of award, of which $159,476,476 will expire this fiscal year. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. Air Force (47 percent), the U.S. Navy (33 percent); U.S. Marine Corps (14 percent); and international partners (6 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/12/14)

Whiting Field sets command change

NAVAL AIR STATION WHITING FIELD, Fla. – Capt. Todd Bahlau will take the reins Dec. 17 as Naval Air Station Whiting Field's 41st commanding officer. He takes over from Capt. Matthew Coughlin during a change of command ceremony. Bahlau, a U.S. Naval Academy graduate and aviator, comes to Northwest Florida from duty with the U.S. Strategic Command at Offutt Air Force Base, Neb. Coughlin, who served for three years as Whiting Field command, is retiring after 27 years of service. Commander Navy Region Southeast Rear Adm. Mary Jackson will be the guest speaker at the 10 a.m. ceremony. (Source; NAS Whiting Field, 12/12/14)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Canada report sees no F-35 edge

OTTAWA - The Lockheed Martin F-35 has no clear edge over three other jet fighters Canada is considering to replace its aging fleet, a declassified government report says. The F-35, Eurofighter Typhoon, Dassault Rafale and Boeing Super Hornet are all able of accomplish missions envisioned by Canadian military leaders. The only exception would be going to war with another state, but the report's authors concluded that unlikely. A purchase decision is not expected until after next year's general election. Canada is one of the original nine partner nation in the F-35 program and for now still intends to buy 65 F-35s beginning in 2020. (Sources: AFP via Yahoo, Flightglobal, 12/11/2014) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Norway F-35 fuselage completed

Palmdale technicians inspect center fuselage
Northrop Grumman photo
PALMDALE, Calif. – Northrop Grumman earlier this month completed the center fuselage for the first F-35 to be ordered by Norway, a conventional takeoff and landing variant designated AM-1. As a principal member of the Lockheed Martin-led F-35 industry team, Northrop Grumman designed and produces the center fuselage for all three F-35 variants. The AM-1 center fuselage is the first of 52 fuselages Northrop Grumman will produce for Norway. It is the 166th center fuselage that the company has produced at its Palmdale site. Lockheed Martin will perform final assembly and checkout of the Norwegian F-35s in Fort Worth, Texas. (Source: Northrop Grumman, 12/10/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Coast Guard saves man on raft

NEW ORLEANS – A U.S. Coast Guard Air Station New Orleans MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and aircrew rescued a man from a life raft 30 miles south of Venice, La., Wednesday. A crewman aboard the vessel Harvey Pacer notified CG Sector New Orleans after receiving a Mayday from the sailing vessel Amsheet, which reported it struck an unknown object and was taking on water and that the owner was in a life raft. There were no reported injuries. (Source: U.S. Coast Guard, 12/10/14)

Contract: Reliable, $8.4M

Reliable Contracting Group LLC, Louisville, Ky., was awarded a $8,417,693 firm-fixed-price contract with options for replacing the fuel pipeline at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla., with an estimated completion date of March 21, 2014. Bids were solicited via the Internet with five received. Fiscal 2014 military construction funds in the amount of $8,417,693 are being obligated at the time of the award. Army Corps of Engineers, Mobile, Ala., is the contracting activity (W91278-15-C-0005). (Source: DoD, 12/11/14)

Italy, Turkey to service F-35s

Italy and Turkey were chosen by the Pentagon to provide initial heavy maintenance of F-35 fighter jets in Europe starting in 2018. That paves the way for billions of dollars of work by companies in those countries, and several others in coming years, as the new stealth warplane starts operating around the world. Air Force Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan, who runs the F-35 program for the Defense Department, said the countries involved would release details about which companies would do the work. Italy will provide initial heavy maintenance, with Britain providing backup airframe maintenance. Heavy maintenance on the F135 engine will be done in Turkey, but Norway and the Netherlands will also set up sites in a few years. (Source: Reuters, Lockheed Martin, 12/11/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Contract: Lockheed, $12.5M

Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Sunnyvale, Calif., has been awarded a $12,463,696 modification (P00649) to previously awarded contract F04701-02-C-0002 for the Advanced Extremely High Frequency system. Contractor will provide protected key management architecture (KMA) for installation, integration and factory test of the replacement KMA system with the existing AEHF control and space segments. Work will be performed at Sunnyvale; Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif.; and Valley Forge, Pa., and is expected to be completed by Sept. 30, 2017. Fiscal 2014 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $3,979,384 are being obligated at the time of award. Space and Missile Systems Center, Los Angeles Air Force Base, Calif., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 12/10/14) Gulf Coast note: Lockheed Martin does a portion of the work on the AEHF system at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Contract: Composite Eng., $72.4M

Composite Engineering Inc., Sacramento, Calif., has been awarded a $72,367,482 firm-fixed-price contract for Air Force Subscale Aerial Target Lots 11-13 production. Contractor will produce the AFSAT BQM-167A that will be used by the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Group to test and evaluate air-to-air and surface-to-air weapons systems. Work will be performed at Sacramento and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2017. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2013 and 2014 Department of Defense procurement funds in the amount of $24,309,430 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8678-15-C-0069). (Source: DoD, 12/10/14)

Pentagon spending bill OK'd

The House and Senate have agreed to provide $554.2 billion in funding for the military in fiscal 2015. The funding includes money for additional F-35A and F-35C Joint Strike Fighters. The bill includes $224 million for two additional F-35A fighters for the U.S. Air Force and $255 million for two additional Navy F-35Cs. The measure funds a total of 38 F-35 fighters, nine more than in FY-14. (Source: Reuters, 12/10/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Italy-built F-35 rollout in March

Italy is preparing for the rollout of its first F-35A from the final assembly and checkout facility at Cameri Air Base in northern Italy. The first aircraft is scheduled to come off the line by March 2015. Italy invested about $1 billion in building the facility, which began operations last year. The original plan called for about 250 planes, 113 for Italy and 85 for the Netherlands, to be built at the plant. But the final number is up in the air. The facility, however, has been built with expansion in mind. Cameri is also the site of Italy’s hub for Eurofighter Typhoon and Tornado work. (Source: Aviation Week, 12/10/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Visit highlights French investments

MOBILE, Ala. -- Denis Barbet, France's Atlanta-based Consul General to the Southeast, will visit Mobile this week. Barbet in a statement said that with recent investments by companies like Airbus and Safran, it's likely there will be an increase in the French presence in Alabama and Mobile in coming years. Barbet's visit will be hosted by business leaders from the region, including the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce, which will host an event to spotlight France's existing investments, including chemical maker Arkema and Technip, which makes products for the oil and gas industry. Barbet also will tour the $600 million Airbus A320 final assembly line that will open in the fall of 2015, and the Port of Mobile. (Source: al.com, 12/09/14)

AVCON paving new ground

NICEVILLE, Fla. -- A new FAA-approved asphalt that's proven to be more durable, stronger and fuel resistant than what's currrently in use is making some inroads at airports. But officials from AVCON say it will take more time to overcome skepticism about P-601. Feature story. (Source: GCRL Newsletter, 12/09/14)

Small company with a big task

CANTONMENT, Fla. -- Marianna Airmotive's forte of overhaul, fabrication and remanufacturing help keep one of the military's key assets airborne. But the company's leaders also hope to grow the Cantonment operation's portfolio beyond the C-5. Feature story. (Source: GCRL Newsletter, 12/09/14)

Mobile company defining its niche

MOBILE, Ala. -- With a corporate history going back more than 100 years and highlights that include being a key supplier during World War II, Continental Motors has been a fixture in Mobile for a long time. Now under the ownership of Chinese aerospace giant AVIC, the company is on a path of growth. Feature story. (Source: GCRL Newsletter, 12/09/14)

The one that's knocking

CARRABELLE, Fla. -- Aerospace recruiting seldom tops the to-do list for Northwest Florida's non-metropolitan, smaller counties. But the Airbus plant being built in Mobile, Ala., provides an intense spotlight on the Gulf Coast region, and unique opportunity for the less populated counties to show off on a world stage. A feature story. (Source: GCRL Newsletter, 12/09/14)

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Blue Angels release schedules

PENSACOLA, Fla. -- The Navy's Blue Angels flight demonstration team announced updates to its 2015 air show season and released its 2016 schedule. The team will perform 65 shows at 35 locations in 2015, and 69 shows at 36 locations in 2016. The schedules including two shows in Pensacola each year, one on the beach in the summer and the other the homecoming at Naval Air Station Pensacola. (Source: Blue Angels, 12/09/14)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Presidential plane makes Eglin stop

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- The Boeing 747 aircraft that’s known as Air Force One when it’s carrying the president spent a portion of the weekend at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., undergoing recertification testing, according to Eglin Air Force Base spokeswoman Lois Walsh. The plane, assigned to the Presidential Airlift Group at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., arrived Friday and left Sunday. The plane recently completed a year-long maintenance cycle and is being tested before its return to service. (Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, 12/08/14)

Airport eyeing name change

FORT WALTON BEACH, Fla. – Northwest Florida Regional Airport is considering changing its name to Destin-Fort Walton Beach International Airport. The Department of Airports plans to ask Okaloosa County Board of Commissioners to consider the name change during a January meeting. The new name was suggested by Market Dynamics Research Group of New Orleans, on grounds the current name is too generic. The airport is located at Eglin Air Force Base. (Source: Northwest Florida Daily News, 12/08/14)

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Fire Scout work intensifies

WASHINGTON – A new level of activity is taking place with the Navy's Fire Scout unmanned helicopter, according to Defense News. For the first time, Fire Scouts will be at sea on four ships at the same time. Two East Coast-based frigates are deployed, each with four MQ-8B models. The LCS Forth Worth recently left San Diego for a planned 16-month deployment with a hybrid aviation detachment of one MQ-8B and one MH-60R Seahawk manned helicopter. Early this month the California-based Coast Guard National Security Cutter Bertholf got underway carrying two Fire Scouts, a first for an NSC. There are two variants of Fire Scout: the B model uses a Schweizer 333 airframe, and the much larger C model uses a Bell 407. Procurement of the B model has ended, with a total of seven test and 23 operational aircraft delivered by Northrop Grumman. Seven of those aircraft have been lost in accidents or stricken. Two Fire Scouts were damaged in October at Wallops Island, Va., when their hangar was damaged in the explosion of an Antares rocket. One of those already has been repaired and is deployed aboard Bertholf. The other is being repaired. (Source: Defense News, 12/06/14) Gulf Coast note: Final assembly of Fire Scouts is done in Moss Point, Miss.; Bertholf was built in Pascagoula, Miss.; LCS Independence class ships are built in Mobile, Ala.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Site first to get certification

VentureCrossings in Bay County, Fla., is the first industrial site to complete Gulf Power's "Florida First Sites" program. Fourteen sites were initially submitted, and nine are still working towards certification. Most expect to be certified by the end of February. St. Joe Co. owns VentureCrossings Enterprise Centre, adjacent to Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport. The site has proper zoning, service to utilities and met numerous other qualifications that make it ready for development. St. Joe, Gulf Power and local, regional and state economic development agencies will now work to market the site to prospective companies. (Source: Gulf Power, 12/05/14) Background: 6,200 acres seek shovel-ready status, December 2013 newsletter)

Contract: Speegle, $7.7M

Speegle Construction, Inc., Niceville, Fla., was awarded a $7,740,000 firm-fixed-price contract, with options, to construct a satellite dining facility. Work will be performed at Cannon Air Force Base, N.M., with an estimated completion date of May 8, 2016. Bids were solicited via the Internet, with seven received. Fiscal 2011, 2014 and 2015 military construction funds in the amount of $7,740,000 are being obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Albuquerque District, Albuquerque, N.M., is the contracting activity (W912PP-15-C-0001). (Source: DoD, 12/05/14)

NASA's Orion test a success

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA's unmanned Orion space capsule, designed to eventually carry astronauts into deep space, had a picture-perfect spashdown  in the Pacific Ocean today at the end of its first test flight. After two laps of Earth, Orion plunged through the atmosphere at 20,000 mph, enveloped in a fireball that scorched its heat shield. The capsule emerged intact from its 3,600-mile fall and deployed three orange-and-white parachutes to brake its speed to 20 mph as it hit the water at 11:29 a.m. EST, 270 miles west of Baja California. (Sources: multiple, including USA Today, NBC News, 12/05/14) Gulf Coast note: Lockheed Martin built the capsule at Michoud Assembly Facility, New Orleans; the Delta IV, built in Decatur, Ala., is powered by RS-68 engines tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss. Previous

Thursday, December 4, 2014

33rd gets simulation award

Academic Training Center simulator
Air Force photo 
ORLANDO, Fla. -- The National Training and Simulation Association selected the F-35 Lightning II Training System for the 2014 Modeling and Simulation Award. The award recognizes the 33rd Fighter Wing, the F-35 Joint Program Office and Lockheed Martin for delivering an effective, immersive training experience for F-35 pilots and maintainers. The F-35 team is one of six winners, across industry and defense, honored for advancing modeling and simulation technologies. The 33rd at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., was re-designated under the Air Education and Training Command on Oct. 1, 2009, to establish the F-35 training mission. The pilot and maintainer qualifications are accomplished in part through simulations to ensure efficient mission readiness. As the first of its kind in the Department of Defense, the wing is responsible for F-35 pilot and maintainer training for DoD and, in the future, at least eight coalition partners. Recently, Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., also established an F-35A training mission. To date, more than 140 pilots and 1,500 maintainers from the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands have graduated from the 33 FW's F-35 Integrated Training Center. (Source: 33rd Wing Public Affairs, 12/03/14)

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

ONR awarded for F-35 innovation

ARLINGTON, Va. -- The Office of Naval Research received one of the nation's top manufacturing awards for an innovative, cost-saving method for making advanced cockpit canopies, for the F-35 program. Officials from ONR's Manufacturing Technology (ManTech) program accepted the Department of Defense's Joint Defense Manufacturing Technology Achievement Award at the Defense Manufacturing Conference in San Antonio. The automated process will be used to make canopies for more than 2,000 aircraft, saving nearly $125 million over the life of the F-35 program.(Source: NNS, 12/03/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center; ONR's Naval Research Laboratory has a detachment at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Finnair getting more XWBs

Finnair has firmed up an order for eight further Airbus A350 XWB aircraft, a decision that means additional Trent XWB engine business worth $450 million at list prices. The aircraft are in addition to 11 Airbus A350 XWBs that the airline already has on order, powered by the same engine. Finnair was the first airline to select the A350 XWB and will be the first European airline to receive the aircraft. The Trent XWB is the fastest-selling widebody engine ever with more than 1,500 engines already sold. It will power the first A350 XWB into service later this year. (Sources: Rolls-Royce, Airbus, 12/03/14) Gulf Coast note: XWB engines are tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Contract: Lockheed, $97.8M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $97,832,182 modification to a previously awarded advance acquisition contract (N00019-13-C-0008) for a financial arrangement implementing a Foreign Military Sales Letter of Offer for the government of Israel in support of the F-35 program. Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas, and expected to be completed in December 2022. Foreign military sales funds in the amount of $30,296,783 are being obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting authority. (Source: DoD, 12/02/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

SSC research helps MRI, fuel-cells

Could NASA research at Stennis Space Center help hospital MRI machines and fuel-cell cars of the future? Perhaps. Engineers are testing an innovative technology that could yield new sources of both expensive helium gas required for cooling MRI machines and purified, high-pressure hydrogen gas, the fuel for fuel-cells. SSC, which tests rocket engines in South Mississippi, produces a large quantity of hydrogen and helium gas mixture in its rocket tests which right now is just burned or vented into the air. But using Sustainable Innovations' electrochemical Hydrogen Recovery System (HRS), NASA will be able to extract hydrogen from rocket fuel line purge gas, leaving behind high-value helium, a purified stream compressed to commercial storage pressure. And with helium's price only expected to rise as global supplies plateau, the helium extraction technology will become more and more valuable to NASA in the coming years and provide a possible revenue stream. Sustainable Innovations, of East Hartford, Conn., developed HRS for NASA under a Phase II Small Business Technology Transfer program. The same technology on which HRS is based will also be useful for separating hydrogen from CO2 and CO in the life support technologies now being tested and developed for its manned spaceflight missions. (Source: PRNews, 12/02/14)

Orion set to launch Thursday

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. – NASA will launch an unmanned Orion space capsule Thursday, weather permitting, on two orbits of Earth in the first space test of the deep-space vehicle. The vehicle will be launched by a United Launch Alliance Delta IV rocket, which is substituting for the still-being-developed NASA Space Launch System. The flight, which will take the capsule 3,600 miles out into space, will splash down some four hours later in the Pacific off the California and Mexico’s Baja coast. Orion will be recovered by Navy ships. (Sources: multiple, including al.com, Fox News, 12/02/14) Gulf Coast note: Lockheed Martin built the capsule at Michoud Assembly Facility, New Orleans; the Delta IV, built in Decatur, Ala., is powered by RS-68 engines tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Contract: Bering Sea Env., $7.1M

Bering Sea Environmental LLC, Anchorage, Alaska, has been awarded a $7,149,346 modification (P00051) to exercise an option on previously awarded contract FA4890-11-C-0004 to provide program support for Air Combat Command's Air Combat Training System Operations and Maintenance support services. Work will be performed at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.; Langley Air Force Base, Va.; Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, N.C.; Shaw Air Force Base, S.C.; Barksdale Air Force Base, La.; Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.; Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho; Royal Air Force Lakenheath, England; Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany; and Aviano Air Base, Italy, and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2015. Acquisition Management and Integration Center, Newport News, Va., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/28/14)

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Contract: Lockheed, $492M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $492,008,803 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00019-12-C-0004) to provide non-air vehicle spares, support equipment, Autonomic Logistics Information System hardware and software upgrades, supply chain management, full mission simulators and non-recurring engineering services to support Low Rate Initial Production Lot VII F-35 aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps, Navy and international partners. Work will be performed in Orlando, Fla. (81 percent); El Segundo, Calif. (9 percent); Fort Worth, Texas (5 percent); Owego, N.Y. (4 percent); and Samlesbury, United Kingdom (1 percent), and is expected to be completed in December 2021. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. Air Force (37 percent), the U.S. Navy (23 percent); U.S. Marine Corps (20.5 percent); and international partners (19.5 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/26/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Contract: Lockheed, $64.3M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $64,283,943 cost-plus-incentive-fee contract for the modification of 14 F-35A air vehicles for the U.S. Air Force (13) and the government of the Netherlands (1), and 13 F-35B air vehicles for the U.S. Marine Corps (11) and the government of the United Kingdom (2). This contract includes procurement for 528 modification kits, installation, and labor. Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas (40 percent); Cherry Point, N.C. (12 percent); San Diego, Calif. (10 percent); Cedar Rapids, Iowa (7 percent); Ogden, Utah (6 percent); Nashua, N.H. (4 percent); Eglin, Fla. (3 percent); Greenville, S.C. (3 percent); Samlesbury, United Kingdom (3 percent); Edwards, Calif. (2 percent); Marabar, Fla. (2 percent); Tucson, Ariz. (2 percent); Redondo Beach, Calif. (2 percent); Orlando, Fla. (2 percent); Baltimore, Md. (1 percent); and Owego, N.Y. (1 percent), and is expected to be completed in September 2017. This modification combines purchases for the U.S. Marine Corps (48 percent); U.S. Air Force (39 percent), and international partners (13 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting authority (N00019-15-C-0016). (Source: DoD, 11/26/14)

Contract: UTC, $11.5M

United Technologies Corp., Pratt & Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, Conn., is being awarded an $11,473,337 firm-fixed-price modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00019-13-C-0016) for annualized sustainment, procuring operations and maintenance services for Low Rate Initial Production VIII F-135 propulsion systems for F-35 aircraft. This effort will include supply chain management, inventory optimization, flight service representatives at operational sites, oversight and planning of training activities, and aircraft retrofit activities. Work will be performed at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Complex, Tinker Air Force Base, Okla. (6 percent), and various locations within the continental United States (94 percent), and is expected to be completed in December 2015. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. Air Force (52 percent), the U.S. Navy (46 percent), and international partners (2 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/26/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Contract: UTC, $105.5M

United Technologies Corp., Pratt & Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, Conn., is being awarded a $105,492,976 cost-plus-incentive-fee modification to the previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm target contract N00019-13-C-0016. This modification exercises an option for sustainment efforts and operations and maintenance services in support of Low Rate Initial Production Lot VIII F135 propulsion systems, including hardware and training course materials and equipment. The engines are used in Lockheed Martin F-35 fighters. Work will be performed in Hartford (55 percent); Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. (12 percent); Oklahoma City, Okla. (7 percent); Palmdale, Calif. (5 percent); and various locations throughout the continental United States (21 percent); work is expected to be completed in December 2015. This contract combines purchase for the U.S. Marine Corps (49 percent); the U.S. Air Force (33 percent); the U.S. Navy (10 percent); and the international partners (8 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/25/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

RR wins $5B order

Rolls-Royce won a $5 billion order for Trent engines to power 50 new Airbus planes ordered by Delta Air Lines. Trent XWB engines will power 25 Airbus A350s and Trent 7000 engines will power 25 Airbus A330neo aircraft. Rolls Royce is the only supplier of engines for both aircraft. The Trent XWB will power the first A350 XWB into service later this year. (Sources: Rolls-Royce, 11/20/14, Reuters, 11/21/14) Gulf Coast note: Rolls-Royce tests XWB and Trent engines at its outdoor test facility at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

801st SOAMXS wins award

A Hurlburt Field maintenance squadron received the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Award for field-level medium category units. The 801st Special operations Aircraft Maintenance Squadron received the award for superior aircraft maintenance during the period of Oct.1, 2012 through Sept. 30, 2013. The squadron, comprised of more than 480 Air Commandos, maintained 16 CV-22 Osprey and nine MC-130H Talon II aircraft during that period. (Source: 1st Special Operations Wing Public Affairs, 11/21/14)

Contract: Lockheed, $7M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $7,011,951 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00019-12-C-0004) to exercise an option for interim contractor support for the F-35 Low-Rate Initial Production Lot VII air systems. Work will be performed at Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C. (55 percent), and Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Ariz. (45 percent), and is expected to be completed in November 2015. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/24/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Making way for Lakota

FORT RUCKER, Ala. - On one of the coldest days of the year in southeast Alabama, three OH-58D Kiowa Warriors Army aviation training helicopters geared up for their final flights from Fort Rucker. But despite of their departure, "aviators will continue to be trained to top standards at the home of Army Aviation," said Lt. Col. Mark Gillespie, 1st Battalion, 14th Aviation Regiment commander, an OH-58D pilot for 20 years. The Army is developing AH-64D/E helicopter models as well as continuing to develop pilots at nearby Hanchey Army Airfield using the UH-72A Lakota helicopter as the primary training aircraft. (Source: Fort Rucker, 11/21/14) Airbus Helicopters produces Lakotas in Columbus, Miss.

Friday, November 21, 2014

F-35C squadron passes milestone

The "Grim Reapers" of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 101, the Navy's first F-35C Lightning II carrier variant squadron, reached a milestone this month by surpassing 1,000 mishap-free flight hours in the F-35C. As the F-35C Fleet Replacement Squadron, VFA-101 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., trains Navy aircrew and maintenance personnel to fly and repair the aircraft. The unit became the Navy's first F-35C squadron after receiving the aircraft June 22, 2013, from Lockheed Martin, and completed the first check flight, Aug. 14. (Source: NNS, 11/21/14)

Contract: Raytheon, $32.2M

Raytheon Co., Raytheon Missile Systems, Tucson, Ariz., has been awarded a $32,221,204 modification (P00010) to previously awarded contract FA8681-13-C-0196 for Enhanced Paveway II guided bomb unit kits and a 10-year warranty for each kit. Contractor will provide 500 Enhanced Paveway II guided bomb units 49 and 50 kits (each kit includes an enhanced computer control group and an air foil group) and a 10-year warranty for each kit to be supplied to the Royal Saudi Air Force. Work will be performed at Tucson and is expected to be completed by July 1, 2016. This contract involves foreign military sales. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8681-13-C-0196). (Source: DoD, 11/21/14)

Contract: Lockheed, $4.1B

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $4,123,746,486 modification to a previously awarded fixed-price-incentive firm-target contract (N00019-13-C-0008) for the production of 43 Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) Lot VIII F-35 aircraft. This includes manufacture and delivery of 29 F-35A aircraft for the U. S. Air Force (19), government of Italy (two), government of Norway (two), government of Japan (four) and government of Israel (two). In addition, this modification provides for 10 F-35B aircraft for the U.S. Marine Corps (six) and government of the United Kingdom (four); and four F-35C aircraft for the U.S. Navy (three) and U.S. Marine Corps (one). This modification also provides for LRIP Lot VIII production requirements, including diminishing manufacturing sources redesign and management, ancillary mission equipment, including pilot flight equipment, and concurrency changes to LRIP Lot VIII aircraft. Work will be performed in Fort Worth, Texas (55 percent); El Segundo, Calif. (15 percent); Warton, United Kingdom (10 percent); Orlando, Fla. (5 percent); Nashua, N.H. (5 percent); Baltimore, Md. (5 percent); and Cameri, Italy (5 percent), and is expected to be completed in May 2017. Fiscal 2014 aircraft procurement funds (Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy), international partner funds, and foreign military sales funds in the amount of $4,120,352,986, will be obligated at the time of this award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract combines purchases for the Air Force (41 percent); Marine Corps (14 percent); Navy (12 percent); international partners (19 percent); and foreign military sales (14 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting authority. (Source: DoD, 11/21/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Contract: Kaman, $28.9M

Kaman Precision Products, Inc., Orlando, Fla., has been awarded a $28,892,973 firm-fixed-price modification (P00023) to exercise the option for Lot 11 production of joint programmable fuze systems. Contractor will provide an additional quantity of 7,846 state-of-the-art fuze systems being produced under the basic contract. Work will be performed at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., and is expected to be completed by Dec. 31, 2016. Fiscal 2014 and 2015 ammunition procurement funds in the amount of $28,892,973 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, is the contracting activity (FA8681-13-C-0029). (Source: DoD, 11/20/14)

Contract: Boeing, $64.4M

The Boeing Corp., St. Louis, Mo., has been awarded a not-to-exceed $64,391,684 cost-plus-incentive-fee, firm-fixed price contract for research and development leading to the procurement of 60 long delay fuzes and development of an embedded fuze system. Work will be performed at St. Louis and is expected to be completed by March 31, 2017. This award is the result of a sole-source acquisition. Fiscal 2014 research, development, test and evaluation, and ammunition procurement funds, in the amount of $28,443,116 are being obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8681-15-C-0050). (Source: DoD, 11/20/14)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Navy project moves forward

FOLEY, Ala. -- The Baldwin County Commission Tuesday endorsed vacating a portion of a county owned road to allow the Navy to extend a runway for new, more capable training aircraft. The nearly $30 million project has been in the works for a long time, and the Navy now believes the project can be finished by summer. The existing Doc McDuffie needs to be vacated so the Navy can expand its east-west runway at Barin Field to accommodate more advanced training aircraft. In return, the federal government will build a new road for residences and businesses located nearby. (Source: al.com, 11/18/14)

Tyndall area development OK'd

PANAMA CITY, Fla. -- A beachfront neighborhood of up to 195 homes could be allowed in the flight path of Tyndall Air Force Base after the Bay County Commission on Tuesday approved a land-use plan amendment. The request from Sugar Sands Partners to make a large-scale amendment to its comprehensive land-use plan for 165 acres would increase the maximum number of units from the current 16 residential units. Base officials said the best protection for the base’s mission would be leaving the zoning as it is, but recommended several changes if the amendment is approved, including height restrictions and buildings with enhanced noise and vibration restriction standards. (Source: Panama City News Herald, 11/18/14)

Monday, November 17, 2014

Fifth gens jointly train

F-35s and F-22s fly in formation at Eglin.
U.S. Air Force photo
EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- Four F-22 Raptors from Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va., were deployed to Eglin Air Force Base earlier this month for the unit's first operational integration training mission with the F-35A Lightning II’s of Eglin's 33rd Fighter Wing. The training was to improve integrated employment of fifth-generation assets and tactics. The training allowed both units to gain operational familiarization and capture lessons learned to improve future exercises. The F-35s and F-22s flew offensive counter air, defensive counter air and interdiction missions together, exploring ways to maximize their fifth-generation capabilities. (Source: 33rd Fighter Wing, 11/17/2014) Eglin is home of the F-35 integrated training center. F-22 pilots are trained at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.

Airbus to supply Orion module

Airbus Group will develop and build a service module for the U.S. space capsule, Orion, the first marking the first time a European firm will provide system-critical elements for a U.S. space project. Airbus Defense and Space, Europe's largest aerospace group, said the contract signed with the European Space Agency is worth around $488 million. The service module will provide propulsion, power supply, thermal control and the central elements of the life support system of the capsule designed for deep space missions. The module is based on the Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) developed and constructed by Airbus on behalf of ESA as a supply craft for the International Space Station. (Source: multiple, including Reuters, 11/17/14, Space Daily, 11/18/14) Gulf Coast connections: The first space-bound Orion, slated to launch next month atop a Delta IV, was built at Michoud Assembly Facility, New Orleans. The Delta IV's RS-68 engines were tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss.; Future Orion launches will be aboard NASA's massive Space Launch System, being built in part at Michoud Assembly Facility. The SLS's RS-25 engines will be tested at Stennis Space Center; Airbus is building an A320 final assembly line in Mobile, Ala., where it also has an engineering center and an Airbus Military operation.

Contract: Airbus D&S, $18.5M

Airbus Defense and Space Inc., Herndon, Va., was awarded an $18,541,542 modification (P00858) to contract W58RGZ-06-C-0194 for contractor logistic support to include flying hours, mission equipment packages and direct labor support. Fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance (Army) funds in the amount of $18,541,542 were obligated at the time of the award. Estimated completion date is Dec. 31, 2015 .Work will be performed in Columbus, Miss. Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Ala., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/17/14)

Job postings continue

MOBILE, Ala. – Four classifications of hourly manufacturing positions at the Airbus final assembly line were posted Monday. The jobs at the plant, which will open next year, include ground handling technicians, aircraft mechanics structure installation, aircraft cabin interior installation and aircraft electrical installation. For a complete list of Airbus jobs in Mobile, visit the Alabama Industrial Development Training website. (Source: al.com, 11/17/14)

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Navy marks first with Fire Scout

When the Littoral Combat Ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) departs next week for a lengthy deployment to the Western Pacific, it will mark the first deployment of the Navy's manned MH-60R Seahawk helicopter with the unmanned MQ-8B Fire Scout helicopter. Detachment 1 of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 35 (HSM-35) will be ship's aviation detachment and operate one MH-60R and one MQ-8B in the ship's first deployment. HSM-35 of Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado, Calif., is the Navy's first squadron to operate both the MH-60R and MQ-8B. The same pilots who fly the Seahawk also are tried to fly the Fire Scout. (Sources: Seapower, 11/12/14, Washington Times, Times of San Diego, 11/14/14) Gulf Coast note: Final assembly of Northrop Grumman Fire Scouts is done in Moss Point, Miss.

More jobs available

MOBILE, Ala. -- Airbus posted two more jobs Friday for the A320 final assembly line being built at the Mobile Aeroplex. One is for an aircraft conformity manager, the other for a flight line and ground handling manager. For a complete list of Airbus jobs in Mobile, visit the Alabama Industrial Development Training website. (Source: al.com, 11/14/14)

Friday, November 14, 2014

F-35 has first night flight off carrier

The Navy version of the F-35 made its first night flight off an aircraft carrier on Thursday near the end of two weeks of at-sea testing aboard the USS Nimitz. Two Lockheed Martin F-35C jets on the carrier have already met 95 percent of the requirements for the first of three rounds of sea-based tests, proving to be more reliable and performing better than expected, Navy test pilots told reporters. By midday Thursday, the jets had carried out over 101 catapult launches from the carrier, 214 planned "touch and go" landings, and 104 arrested landings using a redesigned tailhook. The tests are being done south of San Diego. (Source: Reuters, 11/13/14) Gulf Coast note: Navy and Marine pilots get initial training in Pensacola and Milton, Fla.; Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Contract: Arete, $11.7M

ArĂȘte Associates, Tucson, Ariz., is being awarded a $11,742,120 modification to a previously awarded firm-fixed-price contract (N61331-11-C-0007) for one AN/DVS-1 coastal battlefield reconnaissance and analysis (COBRA) Block I low-rate initial production system to support the littoral combat ship mine countermeasures mission. The primary mission of AN/DVS-1 COBRA is to conduct unmanned aerial tactical reconnaissance in littoral battlespace for detection and localization of mine fields and obstacles in the surf zone and beach zone prior to amphibious assault. Work will be performed in Tucson and is expected to be completed by February 2017. The Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division, Panama City, Fla., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/13/14)

FAL powerhouse now online

MOBILE, Ala. – Work on the powerhouse for the Airbus A320 final assembly line was completed this week, officials said Wednesday. The powerhouse will provide utility services for the plant under construction at the Mobile Aeroplex. Designed and built by Honeywell, it will require five full-time technicians to oversee the facility when it reaches full operation. Honeywell will also manage and maintenance the facility under a 10-year service agreement with Airbus. The $600 million plant will open next year and produce its first plane, an A321, in 2016. (Source: al.com, Honeywell via PRNewswire, 11/12/14)

Global Hawk sustainment pact inked

SAN DIEGO – The Department of Defense awarded Northrop Grumman a $306 million contract to continue logistics and sustainment services on the RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aircraft system, an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance aircraft. This contract comes on the heels of Global Hawk winning the Dr. James G. Roche Sustainment Excellence Award for the second year in a row. The new agreement continues an existing contract for Global Hawk maintenance, inventory management, parts procurement and other tasks necessary to ensure the availability of the Global Hawk. (Source: Northrop Grumman, 11/12/14) Gulf Coast note: Global Hawk fuselages are built in Moss Point, Miss.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Orion hoisted atop Delta IV

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- NASA's Orion spacecraft is at its launch pad after completing its penultimate journey in the early hours Wednesday. It arrived at Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station at 3:07 a.m. EST, where the spacecraft then was lifted onto a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket in preparation for its first trip to space. Orion will travel almost 60,000 miles into space Dec. 4 during an unmanned flight designed to test many of the spacecraft's systems before it begins carrying astronauts on missions to deep space. (Source: NASA, 11/12/14) Gulf Coast note: Orion was built at NASA's Michoud Assembly Facility, New Orleans; the Delta IV is powered by Aerojet Rocketdyne RS-68 tested at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Flight Design team visits Continental

MOBILE, Ala. – German light sport aircraft maker Flight Design, getting ready for the proof-of-concept flight of its new four-seat C4 aircraft, sent a team to the Continental Motors engine manufacturing plant at the Mobile Aeroplex. Flight Design's technical team attended a weeklong session covering detailed operational knowledge about the Continental IO-360-AF powerplant that was selected for the all-composite C4. The six cylinder 180 horsepower alternate fuels engine is progressing towards FAA Part 33 certification allowing operation on unleaded fuels meeting the UL91 specification or higher. All certification work is complete and FAA approval is expected in 2014. (Source: Aviation Pros, 11/10/14)

Bell 505 has maiden flight

Bell 505 Jet Ranger X has first flight.
Bell Helicopter/Business Wire photo
Bell Helicopter announced that the new Bell 505 Jet Ranger X helicopter had a successful 30-minute first flight at the company's Mirabel, Quebec, manufacturing facility. The 505 is a five-seat, single-engine turbine helicopter that was unveiled at HELI-Expo 2014 in February 2014. Bell has already received more than 240 letters of intent for the new model. (Source: Business Wire, 11/10/14) Gulf Coast note: Bell in August broke ground on an 82,300 square-foot helicopter assembly plant in Lafayette, La., about 135 miles west of New Orleans, that will assemble Bell 505 Short Light Single helicopters.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Tests begin on shape-changing wing

NASA has begun testing a aircraft wing surface that can change its shape in flight. NASA's green project could make future jetliners quieter and more fuel-efficient. The Adaptive Compliant Trailing Edge, ACTE, replaces the current trailing edge and moving parts with an assembly that bends and twists to maneuver an aircraft through the air. The lighter ACTE promises improved aerodynamics, which in turn improves fuel efficiency. The lighter weight also allows for larger fuel tanks in the wings, improving an aircraft's range. It also promises noise reduction during takeoff and landing. The ACTE project at Armstrong Flight Research Center, Calif., is a joint effort between NASA and the Air Force Research Laboratory using flaps designed and built by FlexSyst Inc., of Ann Arbor, Mich. The airfoil can be retrofitted to existing wings or integrated into new ones. (Source: NASA, 11/07/14) Gulf Coast note: Airbus, which will build A320 family aircraft in Mobile, Ala., and Boeing use winglets on the end of wings to improve fuel efficiency by reducing drag; the Air Force Research Lab has its munitions directorate at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Pilot in fatal crash identified

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE — The pilot who died when his F-16C crashed into the Gulf of Mexico Thursday has been identified as Matthew J. LaCourse, a civilian pilot assigned to the 82nd Aerial Targets Squadron. His plane went down 50 to 75 miles south of Panama City during a routine training mission. The cause has not been announced. LaCourse, 58, retired from the Air Force as a lieutenant colonel in 2000. In 2012, LaCourse, who lived in Panama City Beach, marked 2,000 flying hours in an F-4. (Source: Panama City News Herald, 11/07/14)

Friday, November 7, 2014

United to serve Bay County

PANAMA CITY, Fla. – United Airlines said this week that it will serve Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) in early 2015. The airline will provide twice-daily, year-round service to Houston’s George Bush Intercontinental Airport. Operated by United's regional branch, United Express, the first flight is scheduled to take off March 5. The company plans to use ExpressJet Airlines' 50-seat Embraer ERJ 145 aircraft. The airport is also served by Southwest Airlines. (Source: Panama City News Herald, 11/07/14)

MoU signed for 100 A320s

China Aircraft Leasing Co. signed a memorandum of understanding with Airbus for 100 A320 family aircraft. The agreement involves 74 A320neo, 16 A320ceo and 10 A321ceo jetliners. Including this commitment, CALC's total order with Airbus is 140 A320 family aircraft. (Source: Airbus, 11/06/14) Gulf Coast note: Airbus is building an A320 family final assembly line in Mobile, Ala. The first jetliner that will roll out in 2016 will be an A321 for JetBlue.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Body, wreckage recovered

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – Wreckage of an F-16 fighter that crashed in the Gulf of Mexico Thursday morning and the remains of the pilot have been recovered, Air Force officials said. The jet fighter was on a routine training mission when Tyndall lost contact with the pilot. The search area was at a location some 57 miles south of Panama City, Fla. The plane, a single-seat F-16C, was assigned to the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Squadron. The name of the pilot is being withheld pending notification of relatives. Tyndall, home of the 325th Fighter Wing, trains F-22 pilots and has an operational F-22 squadron. The base provides air dominance training and, along with nearby Eglin Air Force Base, performs weapons evaluation missions. (Sources: multiple, including Panama City News Herald, 11/06/14)

F-16 believed down over Gulf

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – An F-16 fighter is believed to have crashed in the Gulf of Mexico today. A news release from Tyndall said the jet was on a routine training mission Thursday morning when contact was lost. The Coast Guard is leading the search and said crews first responded to a location some 57 miles south of Panama City, Fla. Tyndall is home of the 325th Fighter Wing and its mission is air dominance training and operations. The base's aircraft inventory include F-22 fifth-generation fighters. (Sources: multiple, 11/06/14)

Contract: Airbus D&S, $71.4M

Airbus Defense and Space, Inc., Herndon, Va., was awarded a $71,358,549 modification (P00857) to firm-fixed-price contract W58RGZ-06-C-0194 to acquire UH72A Lakota helicopters with ARC 231 radios. Fiscal 2015 other procurement (Army) funds in the amount of $71,713,665 were obligated at the time of the award. The cumulative total for the contract, with this modification, is $2,734,932,786. Estimated completion date is June 30, 2016. Work will be performed in Columbus, Miss. Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal (Aviation), Redstone Arsenal, Ala., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/06/14)

Eglin scientist best in AF

Dr. Don Grundel
A scientist from Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., Dr. Don Grundel, was named the Air Force’s 2013 Senior Civilian Scientist and Engineer of the Year. Under his leadership, the Systems Integration and Interface branch of the Armament Directorate was responsible for many achievements, ranging from major cost-saving initiatives to enhancing the way warfighters operate in the field. Among the achievements cited was improving survivability of the BLU-109 bunker-busting bomb by 80 percent at a cost of $50 per weapons. Also cited was qualification of the first medium-caliber ammunition, a 25mm non-energetic tungsten penetrating round, for the F-35 gun. Grundel was recognized at an Oct. 23 ceremony. (Source: Eglin Public Affairs, 11/06/14)

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Orbital: Antares ditching AJ26?

Orbital Sciences Corp. has decided it will likely discontinue using the Aerojet Rocketdyne AJ26 engine to power future Antares space launch vehicles. The company said today that preliminary review of the date from last week's explosion of an Antares rocket after liftoff from Wallops Island, Va., indicates a probable turbopump-related failure in one of the two AJ26 engine. Orbital said it still plans to fulfill its contract commitments to NASA to resupply the International Space Station through one or two non-Antares launches of the company's Cygnus cargo spacecraft to the ISS in 2015-2016. Orbital Sciences said it plans an early introduction of a previously selected Antares engine upgrade in 2016. (Source: Orbital Sciences via Business Wire, 11/05/14) Gulf Coast note: Aerojet tests the AJ26 engine at Stennis Space Center, Miss. Previous

Airbus seeks procurement pros

MOBILE, Ala. -- Airbus is seeking procurement professionals for its A320 final assembly line being built at Mobile Aeroplex. The positions will be responsible for the acquisition of goods and services and maintaining vendor relationships. The position requires a bachelor's degree in business, engineering or related field or the equivalent combination of education and experience. For a complete list of Airbus jobs in Mobile, visit the Alabama Industrial Development Training website. (Source: al.com, 11/04/14)

Rolls-Royce shedding jobs

Rolls-Royce will be shedding 2,600 jobs over the next 18 months, part of an intensified program to improve operational efficiency and reduce costs. The company said in a news release Tuesday that the cuts will come principally in the aerospace division, and that the majority of the reductions will be achieved in 2015. (Source: Rolls-Royce, 11/04/14) A company spokesman said through an email that he could not specify where cuts would occur, but said a union has said it expects two-thirds of the cuts to be in the U.K. The company has 55,200 workers worldwide, and 8,500 in the United States. Rolls-Royce has an engine test facility at Stennis Space Center, Miss.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Partners can customize F-35 data

U.S. allies buying F-35 fighters will be able to customize the mission data packages loaded onto their aircraft, marking a solution to a long-standing bone of contention among partners developing the F-35. The Pentagon has a policy of never sharing the source codes for any U.S. weapons system. But partners want to be able to modify data packages to meet their needs. Data packages hold terrain and threat information for particular regions, along with data on friendly forces, all providing a pilot with battlespace awareness. Air Force Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan, the F-35 program manager, said last week that a compromise has been reached through labs where partners will be able to do their own software work. The U.S. Navy will operate a mission data lab at Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif. Right now the Air Force's Air Combat Command reprogramming lab at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., creates all of the F-35 mission data packages. Building additional reprogramming labs will help alleviate pressure on the Eglin lab. Partner nations will also be building facilities in the U.S. to reprogram their F-35s. (Source: USNI, 11/04/14)

Booz Allen to support 96th TW

The Air Force selected Booz Allen Hamilton Engineering Services LLC to provide technical support to the 96th Test Wing at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. Under the terms of the $53 million contract, Booz Allen will provide the 96th TW with command, control, communications, computers, intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR) capabilities, and other technical, engineering and research management support. The 96th Test Wing is the test and evaluation center for Air Force delivered weapons; navigation and guidance systems; command and control systems, and Air Force Special Operations Command systems. The wing provides expert evaluation and validation of the performance of systems throughout the design, development, acquisition, and sustainment process to ensure the warfighter has technologically superior, reliable, maintainable, sustainable and safe systems. (Source: Business Wire, 11/04/14)

Monday, November 3, 2014

F-35 makes carrier arrested landing

SAN DIEGO -- The Navy made history Nov. 3 as an F-35C conducted its first arrested landing aboard an aircraft carrier off the coast of San Diego. Navy test pilot Cmdr. Tony Wilson landed F-35C test aircraft CF-03 at 12:18 p.m. aboard USS Nimitz (CVN 68) flight deck. The arrested landing is part of initial at-sea Developmental Testing I (DT-I) for the F-35C, which commenced Nov. 3 and is expected to last two weeks. (Source: NNS, 11/03/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Contract: Lockheed, $50M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $49,999,799 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00019-02-C-3002) for operational and engineering support required to integrate the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter operations with the Queen Elizabeth Class carrier for the government of the United Kingdom. Work will be performed in Samlesbury, U.K. (64 percent); Fort Worth, Texas (26 percent); and Orlando, Fla. (10 percent), and is expected to be completed in December 2017. International partner funds in the amount of $10,832,900 are being obligated on this award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/03/14)

Contract: Raytheon, $85.5M

Raytheon Co. Missile Systems, Tucson, Ariz., has been awarded a not-to-exceed $85,500,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for Griffin missiles and support. Contractor will provide procurement of Griffin A and B Block II/III missiles and test/support equipment under firm-fixed-price contract line item number along with engineering support under a cost-plus-fixed-fee CLIN. Work will be performed at Tucson and is expected to be completed by Oct. 30, 2017. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is the contracting activity (FA8656-15-D-0241). (Source: DoD, 11/03/14)

Contract: L-3, $22.4M

L3 Communications Corp., Systems Field Support, Madison, Miss., has been awarded an estimated $22,354,202 firm-fixed-price and cost-reimbursement modification (P00028) to previously awarded contract FA8106-11-D-0002 to exercise the option for C-12 contractor logistics support. Work will be performed at Accra, Ghana; Andrews Air Force Base, Md.; Ankara, Turkey; Bangkok, Thailand; Bogota, Columbia; Brasilia, Brazil; Budapest, Hungary; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Cairo, Egypt; Edwards Air Force Base, Calif.; Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska; Gaborone, Botswana; Holloman Air Force Base, N.M.; Islamabad, Pakistan; Manila, Philippines; Nairobi, Kenya; Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; San Angelo, Texas; Tegucigalpa, Honduras; Yokota Air Base, Japan, and is expected to be completed by Oct. 31, 2015. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/03/14)

Contract: Lockheed, $7.3M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, has been awarded a $7,313,618 modification (P00573) to previously awarded contract FA8611-08-C-2897 for F-22 sustainment training systems hardware retrofits. Work will be performed at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.; Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii; and Langley Air Force Base, Va., and is expected to be completed by Nov. 3, 2015. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Hill Air Force Base, Utah, is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/03/14)

Contract: Multiple, $99.8M

Catalyst Professional Services Inc., Colorado Springs, Colo. (N62645-15-D-5014); Donald L. Mooney Enterprises LLC doing business as Nurses Etc. Staffing, San Antonio, Texas (N62645-15-D-5017); Loyal Source Government Services LLC, Orlando, Fla. (N62645-15-D-5015); Magnum Opus Technologies Inc., San Antonio, Texas (N62645-15-D-5016); and Potomac Healthcare Solutions LLC, Woodbridge, Va. (N62645-15-D-5018), are each being awarded a 42-month, firm-fixed-priced, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, multiple award task order contract for various medical services that include the labor categories of Allied Health, Technologist, Technician and Assistant services at Military Treatment Facilities in the Southeastern Region of the United States. The aggregate not-to-exceed amount for these multiple award contracts combined is $99,773,371. These five companies will have the opportunity to bid on each individual task order. Work will be performed at the Naval Hospital Jacksonville, Fla. (25 percent); Naval Health Clinic Corpus Christi, Texas (25 percent); Naval Hospital Pensacola, Fla. (25 percent); Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune, N.C. (10 percent); Naval Hospital Beaufort, S.C. (3 percent); Naval Hospital Cherry Point, N.C. (3 percent); Naval Health Clinic Charleston, S.C. (3 percent); Navy Medicine Operational Training Center Pensacola (3 percent); and associated branch clinics (3 percent). Work is expected to be completed July 31, 2018. The Naval Medical Logistics Command, Fort Detrick, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 11/03/14)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Blue Angels homecoming near

PENSACOLA, Fla. – The Blue Angels will end the show season with a homecoming at Sherman Field at Naval Air Station Pensacola Nov. 7 through Nov. 9. The air show draws an average of 50,000 people on Friday and 100,000 on Saturday, but this year a third day is being added on Sunday. Friday's show is at 4 p.m. and Saturday's and Sunday's will be at 9 a.m. The Blue Angels will perform at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Admission is free. (Source: Pensacola News Journal, 11/02/14)

Saturday, November 1, 2014

F-35 engine fix coming

The head of the F-35 program office said that by the end of December he expects to have decided on a permanent solution for a design issue that caused an F-35A engine to fail in June at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. Engine-maker Pratt and Whitney has offered several potential fixes, some of which already are being tested, said Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher C. Bogdan. The engine failure and subsequent fire were the result of micro fractures in one of the three-stage fan sections that compress air before it enters the engine. These sections are lined with a polyimide material that is designed to rub against the fan blades to reduce pressure loss. In the case of AF-27, the third fan rubbed in excess of tolerance during maneuvers several weeks before the failure, causing the blades to heat to about 1,900 degrees -- 900 more than ever expected, Bogdan said. This led to micro fractures in the titanium part of the rotor, which grew over the next few weeks of flying before finally failing. (Source: AFNS, 10/31/14)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Contract: Pratt and Whitney, $793M

Pratt and Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, Conn., is being awarded a $793,051,336 modification to the previously awarded fixed-price-incentive-firm target Low Rate Initial Production Lot VIII F135 propulsion systems contract (N00019-13-C-0016). This modification provides for the procurement of 19 F135-PW-100 Conventional Take Off and Landing propulsion systems for the U.S. Air Force; six F135-PW-600 Short Take-off and Vertical Landing propulsion systems for the U.S. Marine Corps; and four F135-PW-100 propulsion systems for the U.S. Navy. In addition, the modification provides for four F135-PW-100 propulsion systems and four F135-PW-600 propulsion systems for international partners, eight F135-PW-100 propulsion systems, and three F135-PW-100 spare propulsion systems for foreign military sales countries. This modification further provides for program administrative labor, engineering assistance to production, and spare modules. Work will be performed in Middletown, Conn. (67 percent); Bristol, U.K. (16.5 percent); and Indianapolis, Ind. (16.5 percent), and is expected to be completed in March 2018. Fiscal 2014 aircraft procurement (Navy and Air Force), international partner, and foreign military sales funds in the amount of $793,051,336 will be obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract combines purchase for the U.S. Air Force (33 percent); the U.S. Navy (30 percent); international partners (19 percent); and foreign military sales (18 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contracting activity. (Source: DoD, 10/30/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Contract: Lockheed, $411.1M

Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Fort Worth, Texas, is being awarded a $411,111,649 modification to a previously awarded cost-plus-incentive-fee contract (N00019-15-C-0031) for the repair and replenishment of government-owned F-35 fighter assets, including spare parts for the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Air Force and international partners. In addition, this modification provides for sustainment analysis and training related efforts. Work will be performed in Fort Worth (35 percent); El Segundo, Calif. (25 percent); Warton, U.K. (20 percent); Orlando, Fla. (10 percent); Nashua, N.H. (5 percent); and Baltimore, Md. (5 percent), and is expected to be completed by November 2015. Fiscal 2014 aircraft procurement (Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force); fiscal 2015 aircraft procurement (Navy and Air Force); fiscal 2015 operations and maintenance (Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force); and international partner funds in the amount of $159,958,125 are being obligated at time of award, $55,569,144 of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract combines purchases for the U.S. Navy (17 percent); the U.S. Marine Corps (27 percent); the U.S. Air Force (49 percent); and the international partners (7 percent). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Md., is the contract activity. (Source: DoD, 10/30/14) Gulf Coast note: Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., is home of the F-35 integrated training center.

Fleet helos gather at Whiting

MILTON, Fla. – A host of aircraft have gathered at Naval Air Station Whiting Field, Fla., for the 25th annual Fleet Fly-In. The event is designed to let military student pilots see the aircraft they will fly once they go out in the fleet. Some two dozen Coast Guard, Navy and Marine Corps aircraft will be at the base for three days taking students on familiarization flights. (Source: Pensacola News Journal, 10/29/14)

War game grows

GULFPORT, Miss. -- Military aircraft and vessels from across the country are participating in a two-week training exercise at the National Guard's Trent Lott Combat Readiness Training Center at Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport. More than 52 units are reportedly involved in the war games. Called Southern Strike, the exercise involves no large land force, but does involve special operations units calling in mock air strikes. The exercise has grown each of its first three years, first involving just the Air National Guard and then expanding across the U.S. military branches over the following two years to the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, FBI and Special Operations Forces. (Source: Sun Herald, 10/28/14)

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

First Mobile jetliner will be A321

The first jetliner that will come out of the Airbus final assembly line in Mobile, Ala., will be an A321 rather than an A320 as originally planned. That's what Airbus Americas President Barry Eccleston told an audience in Seattle Tuesday. The move reflects the rising demand for the bigger jet. It will be an A321ceo, or “current engine option,” and it will roll out in April 2016. In the year through September, Airbus has booked 311 gross orders for the A321, which seats about 185 in a two-class configuration but up to 220 for economy carriers. (Source: Reuters, 10/28/14) The Mobile plant will open in the fall of 2015 and eventually produce four to five A320 family planes a month.