Mac Thornberry, chair of the House Armed Services Committee, says he has support from Republican leaders in the House for a 15% increase in defense spending over three years. The deal is still in its early stages, and negotiations will be ongoing as it moves through Congress.
The Missile Defense Agency says it will need an laser-armed unmanned aircraft that can perform like Lockheed Martin's U-2S when it comes to payload and high-altitude flying. These requirements are beyond any current drone on the market.
German firms Rohde & Schwarz, ESG and Diehl Defence jointly presented their Guardion drone defense system at the Pair Air Show. The system has already been deployed in Germany.
The potential for Boeing to move ahead with its new midsize airplane received a lot of buzz at the Paris Air Show. Optimism about the military and business aviation markets were also among show highlights.
The new Boeing Manufacturing Development Center at the Georgia Institute of Technology will tackle manufacturing challenges, including advancing automation. "This advanced center will let Georgia Tech students collaborate with Boeing engineers to help drive the development of innovative factory automation solutions in aerospace," said Boeing CTO Greg Hyslop.
SpaceX and Boeing are on track for demonstration flights for NASA's Commercial Crew program. SpaceX is planning a demo flight later this year, while Boeing has scheduled its demo flight for early 2018.
SpaceX expects three launches of the Falcon Heavy rocket within the next year and a half and will unveil final improvements to its Falcon 9 by year's end.
The House appropriations subcommittee on defense is calling for the purchase of an additional 14 F-35 fighter jets and 10 Boeing F/A-18E/Fs beyond what the White House requested. In addition, the panel wants to purchase 56 UH-60M helicopters.
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry wants the Pentagon to set clear timelines for the approval of foreign military sales. His proposal does not include specifics regarding how long approvals for sales may take under the new timelines.
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