The Sequestration Outlook, Beyond Short-Term Adjustments
- The Government Accountability Office (GAO) published a report on DoD’s handling of the FY13 fiscal environment:
“DOD’s approach to sequestration was a short-term response focused on addressing the immediate funding reductions for fiscal year 2013. DOD was able to reduce spending levels for the remainder of fiscal year 2013 without making permanent changes, such as adjusting the size of its forces or canceling weapon systems programs. By setting priorities for funding and using available prior year unobligated balances to help meet required reductions, DOD was able to protect or minimize disruptions in certain key areas […].”
- Meanwhile the Senate Armed Services Committee had yet another hearing on the impact of sequestration on defense, with their sights set to the long term. Exec summary: it’s been bad, but it’s about to get worse. From the Navy’s Chief of Naval Operations:
“One potential fiscal and programmatic scenario would result in a ‘2020 Fleet’ of about 255-260 ships, about 30 less than today, and about 40 less than Navy’s PB-14 submission.”
- Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) didn’t feel short-term pain through their 3rd quarter, with sales up 2.6% to $1.64B, pulled by growth at Newport News Shipbuilding. New awards were a mere $200M though, which brings the backlog to $19.3B (66% funded).
“Yummy… daddy like”
- That’s what a US Navy officer reportedly posted on Facebook after allegedly receiving escort services and other perks in return for trading secret contractual information with the CEO of Glenn Defense Marine Asia. Said information helped the company overcharge the Navy for husbanding services. US prosecutors made several arrests after having filed charges back in September.
US Army Industry Days
- Program Executive Office Soldier (PEO Soldier) and other Army offices will host an industry day on power sources for soldiers in Fort Belvoir, VA on Nov. 19-20.
- Can convoys be automated, at least to some extent? The underlying Concepts of Operations (CONOPS) and draft requirements will be discussed on March 25-26, 2014 in Fort Lee, VA.
UAVs in US Airspace
- The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) released its roadmap [PDF] for the integration of UAVs into the civilian US airspace, as well as a 10-year plan [PDF]. The end of 2015 is seen as an inflection point for many of the many necessary regulations and certifications to start falling into place.
Who Moved Schrödinger’s Cat
- In a paper published last month in Nature Communications, researchers from Zhejiang University in China with help from the US, UK, and Singapore, claim to have demonstrated the cloaking of a cat and a goldfish by bending light through glass. The experiment may help shed light on recent claims by military camo maker Hyperstealth Biotechnology for its “Quantum Stealth” material.
Playing to the Home (Captive) Crowd
- We laugh at the obviously fake weapons stories that come out of Iran on a regular basis. But as StrategyPage notes, outside credulousness isn’t the point.
Lessons from Iraq and Afghanistan
- Continuing coverage of CSIS’ Global Security Forum, a panel on battlefield lessons learned from 12 years of war. Beyond the obvious explosion in the use of UAVs, this spans from precision strikes, to improved logistics and medicine, to reach-back intelligence support. Video below: