The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is working to make progress on the Gremlins autonomous unmanned air weapon program following disruptions due to earthquakes in California.
An executive memo by the Trump administration enunciates the administration's support of supersonic civilian aircraft and autonomous vehicles and aircraft for defense. "As we move forward, government must ensure that that we continue to prioritize funding for these sort of technologies -- especially as others such as Europe and China are investing significant sums to gain an advantage in these areas," said David Silver, the Aerospace Industries Association's vice president for civil aviation.
Sikorsky says the Air Force could soon approve the initial low rate production of its Combat Rescue Helicopter, with delivery of the first aircraft coming in 2021. The initial production of 10 helicopters will be worth $500, while the overall program calls for 113 helicopters.
The Army is creating a "persistent cyber training environment" for training its cyber defense personnel. "It will make a huge difference in collective training for cyber teams and improve their readiness," Gen. Paul Nakasone, head of US Cyber Command says.
Embraer Commercial Aircraft CEO John Slattery says his company's merger with Boeing is good for customers. "If the customers feel, as a result of this, there are increased efficiencies from the OEM and those efficiencies can be passed in a meaningful way directly to the customers, then the customers are the beneficiary," he said.
Lawmakers in the House are voicing opposition to the Air Force's plan to select only two providers under the National Security Space Launch Phase 2 Launch Service Procurement. The Air Force is defending its plan, saying it does not stifle competition cut out new entrants.
The American Security Drone Act of 2019, recently introduced in the House, would prevent any federal agency from procuring Chinese-made drones. Local governments would also be banned from using federal funds from buying drones made in China or other countries deemed adversaries.
The Senate Appropriations Committee wants to add $436 million to the defense budget to develop cybersecurity for 5G communications. An additional $100 million is proposed for cybersecurity for satellites and land-based missiles; National Guard cyberdefense programs; and various education programs.
NASA's UAM Grand Challenge seeks to provide a unified framework for the testing and regulatory approval of urban air mobility vehicles. Currently, the Federal Aviation Administration's approval process for UAM is fragmented.
With $3.5 billion in hypersonic contracts in hand, Lockheed Martin is building a new facility in Alabama for testing and development of hypersonic weapons. "This is where we are going to put the hypersonic production capability for all three services for all of the programs we have been talking," Lockheed's Eric Scherff says.
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