Oct 25, 2011 18:35 UTC
In October 2011, Global Integrated Security (USA), Inc. in Reston, VA won a 4-year, $480 million firm-fixed-price contract from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, for Reconstruction Security Support Services throughout Afghanistan. Work will be performed in Afghanistan, with an estimated completion date of Oct 19/15. Five bids were solicited, with 5 bids received by the USACE office in Winchester, VA (W912ER-12-D-0001).
Global Integrated Security has performed RSSS work in Afghanistan before. A $34 million task order in December 2009 focused on Kabul and Kandahar, but a March 2010 contract [PDF] from the US Army Corps of Engineers saw them expand those services to encompass a National Operations Center providing intelligence and analysis, reconnaissance teams, interpreters, aviation services throughout Afghanistan; and “mobile security support services” to USACE personnel during travel to, and presence at, construction sites.
Oct 25, 2011 10:00 UTC
- Lockheed Martin Information Systems & Global Solutions (IS&GS) announced a voluntary layoff program to reduce its headcount by 250 in February 2012, out of a 30,000 total worldwide.
- Northrop Grumman to supply AQS-24A airborne mine-hunting system to Japan for their MCH-101 helicopters.
- The Begin-Saadat Center for Strategic Studies (BESA) in Israel released a preliminary evaluation of the Iron Dome anti-rocket system. Uzi Rubin, the author of the report [PDF in Hebrew], thinks it’s too early to assess the full impact of the system, but says it did save lives.
- An F-15C Eagle from Nellis Air Force Base crashed in Nevada yesterday without making any casualty.
- US DoD deputy chief information officer Robert J. Carey claims rapid IT acquisition programs often fail to scale.
- Son of Stuxnet: meet Duqu, apparently an iteration of the cyberweapon used to penetrate Iran’s nuclear plants in the last couple of years.
- Pantex in Texas is dismantling the last 9,000-pound B-53 nuclear bombs.
- In a letter [PDF] sent to the US Senate Appropriations Committee (SAC) Chairman last week, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB) expresses its support for the version of the FY12 Appropriations bill approved by the SAC last month. The Senate still has to vote on the bill then go to conference with the House to agree on a common text for the bill.
- South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma appointed a Supreme Court of Appeal judge to probe the 1999 Strategic Defence Package (SDP).
- The US House Foreign Affairs Committee has a hearing today on the recent troop deployment in Central Africa. See video below:
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Oct 24, 2011 18:11 UTC
Greek F-16 TS
In an age of expensive fighters, expensive fuel, limited flight time, and cheaper computing power, high-fidelity simulators have become an important component of pilot training. L-3 Link Simulation and Training in Arlington, TX is a global leader in this segment, with a very strong position in fighter plane simulators, and their associated Mission Training Centers. They’re often partnered with another major contractor in those efforts. Boeing is L-3′s partner for F-16 Mission Training Centers, for instance, even though the F-16 is a Lockheed Martin plane.
In October 2011, L-3 Link received a maximum $469.5 million firm-fixed-price, cost reimbursement contract to support 183 of their their F-16 TS (training system) installations around the world for the USAF (33 global locations, incl. Hill AFB, UT), and F-16 customers Bahrain, Greece, and Jordan. The contract doesn’t involve any simulators, but “support” means more than just simulator maintenance, training operations that include other devices, and keeping up the associated databases of simulated objects. It also involves change management to install simulator upgrades if requested, and keeping each simulator remains faithful to changes and upgrades in the real F-16 fleets. The USAF’s ASC/WNSK, at Wright Patterson AFB, OH, manages this contract for ther USAF, and acts as the agent for its Foreign Military Sale clients (FA8621-12-D-6337).
Oct 24, 2011 08:45 UTC
- After recent contradictory news reports, President Obama confirmed that all American troops would leave Iraq by 2012. The US’ request for troop immunity was the deal breaker with the Iraqi government. Thousands of private contractors will stay there though.
- US SecDef Leon Panetta turns his attention to Asia where he is currently traveling for the ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting (ADMM). A meeting with Indonesian leadership may lead to increased military ties between the two countries.
- The US DOD’s DOT&E Oversight List has been updated (CAC required for access). Last year’s version is publicly accessible here [PDF].
- Defense IT spending likely to buck the budget pressure trend.
- Retired Rear Admiral Kenneth Deutsch will lead CSC’s Next Generation Enterprise Network (NGEN) bid.
- DCNS delivered the 1st Gowind Offshore Patrol Vessel L’Adroit to the French Navy. The ship was designed and built on private funds and remains under DCNS ownership. It went through sea trials last summer.
- Textron’s revenues for Q3 ’11 grew by 13.5% to $2.8B. Its subsidiary Bell delivered 9 V-22s and 7 H-1s. Textron’s statement included a $781M “reduction in the backlog primarily to correct an error made in the fourth quarter of 2009 which recorded as backlog the full value of a V-22 contract rather than Bell’s proportionate share”. At 12% of the remaining $6.4B backlog, this is quite a sizable error. Meanwhile, Flir Systems’ Q3 2011 financial results: stable income, 12% topline growth and $55M added to the government division’s backlog – a 17% increase.
- US liberal lawmakers led by Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) intend to use a new DOD report on fraud [PDF] to pressure the supercommittee to enact deep defense spending cuts. See also POGO’s take.
- Virginia’s Governor Bob McDonnell likes to tease his counterpart from Maryland, the state where Lockheed Martin currently has its 5,000-people HQ.
- Missouri House of Representatives to Boeing: we love you too.
Oct 21, 2011 18:50 UTC
Germany’s EC665 Tiger UHT/HAC scout and attack helicopters have traveled a long road since the initial 1984 requirement that launched the program. They were originally slated for service in 1992, but technical delays have dogged the project. Schedule slips and funding shortfalls meant that the EUR 3 billion for 80 helicopters wasn’t placed until 1998. Deliveries from Eurocopter began in 2003, but instead of having 67 helicopters in service by the end of 2009, Germany had just 11 – none of which are considered fit for operations, or even for training.
That issue came to a head in May 2010, as the German government moved to suspend the contract until these technical issues are fixed:
- Unterstutzungshubschrauber: Germany’s Tiger UHT/HAC
- Updates & Key Events
- Additional Readings
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Oct 21, 2011 09:30 UTC
- With Qaddafi dead, NATO operations in Libya are set to wind down quickly.
- Northrop Grumman Electronics Systems to cut 800 jobs in Maryland and other states (further details are lacking). Meanwhile the US Government Accountability Office (GAO) won’t have to lay off people but they may have to use furloughs.
- India, Brazil and South Africa are in early talks of trilateral defense cooperation.
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Oct 20, 2011 20:16 UTC
SL-AMRAAM from FMTV
Oman is located on the eastern Arabian peninsula, controlling the Strait of Hormuz’s western bank, and providing an overwatch position for both the entrance to the Persian Gulf and the Indian Ocean near Africa. The frequent effects of postings to one notoriously hot and bleak island off of its coast were the origin for the British expression “driven around the bend.”
Oman has traditionally had strong defense and foreign policy relationships with Britain, and its military equipment reflects this. In recent years, Oman has been considering its options, as it moves to modernize its fighter force of Jaguars and F-16s. It’s also taking wide-ranging, complementary steps to modernize its air defense systems, and an October 2011 DSCA request seems to place American equipment at the center of that effort.
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Oct 20, 2011 16:47 UTC
E-2C from FS CdG
Oct 19/11: The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency announces [PDF] France’s official request for up to $180 million in equipment to upgrade the Marine Nationale’s fleet of 4 E-2C Hawkeye-2000 airborne early warning planes, which fly from NAS Lann-Bihoue and FS Charles de Gaulle. The Hawkeye 2000s have already been through one major upgrade cycle, improving their mission computer, electronics throughout the aircraft, satellite communications, and propellers.
This is a less comprehensive upgrade, but it’s still important. France will be improving navigation and avionics. American hardware will include 5 AN/ALQ-217 ESM systems, which help the planes sense and then backtrack radio/radar emitters. The core of their upgrade, however, is Mode 5/S Identification Friend or Foe (IFF), which is also being added to their larger, land-based E-3F AWACS planes.
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Oct 20, 2011 10:00 UTC
- CSC’s Chairman and CEO Michael W. Laphen announced he’s retiring. He’s ready to stay around for up to a year until his replacement is found. Laphen started his career and CSC in 1977 and was appointed to his current position in 2007.
- Several US veteran groups are voicing their concerns about the damage defense budget cuts might do.
- To be able to meet budget constraints while avoiding crippling effects, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) is suggesting DoD to change the way it approaches [PDF] compensation/benefits, the use of unmanned systems, and the relative burden it takes relative to US allies.
- The US Senate’s Armed Services Subcommittee on readiness and management support had a hearing with acting Under Secretary of Acquisition Frank Kendall and other DoD staffers in the wake of the Commission on Wartime Contracting’s findings in Iraq and Afghanistan: archived webcast.
- US lawmakers are getting worried by the Deficit/Debt Supercommittee’s lack of apparent progress so far. Despite initial promises of transparency the committee has mostly met behind closed doors.
- Think Defence has a good round-up of UK Parliamentary question and answers from ministers relevant to defence issues.
- Starting Nov. 1, all US Airmen will have to be wearing the Airman Battle Uniform and ABU items.
- The video below shows some of the analytical work done by the Institute for the Study of War on how the rebellion in Libya unfolded:
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Oct 19, 2011 16:51 UTC
(click to view info.)
The Army’s Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, GA is an outgrowth of the BRAC 2005 process, which consolidated the Army Armor Center and School with the Army Infantry Center and School. In October 2011, they issued a 5-year, maximum $458 million contract among 14 contractors.
Winners will bid on task orders to help the center produce training strategies, doctrine, capabilities, analysis, instruction and products for the current and future force. Per standard procedure, work location will be determined with each task order, during a contract period that will run until Sept 30/16. The bid was solicited through the Internet, with 34 bids received by the Mission Contracting Office in Fort Bragg, NC. The 14 winners were:
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