Archive | February, 2009

Oz to convert 12 Super Hornets to Growlers

Okay, the Aussies are not buying new Super Hornets nor Growlers. But they are proposing to spend AUS$335 million to convert 12 of the 24 F/A-18 Super Hornets already on order to the EA-18G Growler standard. “If finally pursued, the relatively small investment will significantly enhance the Super Hornet’s capability, by giving electronic attack capacity […]

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Australia set to make “major” air combat announcement … More Super Hornets?

I might be jumping the gun on this one, but I’ll throw it out there anyway. I think Australia is just about to announce buying another batch of F/A-18E/Fs, and maybe even some (F-22-killing – ha!) EA-18Gs. This email just popped into my inbox. It’s a press release from the office of Australian Minister of […]

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Growler Power: EA-18G boasts F-22 kill (PHOTOS)

Today was Electronic Awareness Warfare Appreciation Day at Andrews AFB. The base hosted a sort of petting zoo for high-tech jamming systems. I noticed a Boeing EA-18G parked on the side, and struck up a conversation with the pilot.As we chatted about interference cancellation systems, I couldn’t help but notice an odd decal decorating the […]

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Defense budget goes to the rescue?

I liked The Economist‘s treatment of last night’s address by President Barack Obama, especially this paragraph. A theme that permeated the speech was rapidly rising national debt,following the budget-busting $787 billion stimulus that Mr Obama justsigned. “Everyone in this chamber-Democrats and Republicans-will haveto sacrifice some worthy priorities for which there are no dollars. Andthat includes […]

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Maybe the VH-3D isn’t so bad

President Barack Obama kidded yesterday that he didn’t realize he was so deprived by the VH-3D that he needed a new helicopter. It was a great line. Even presidential rival Senator John McCain laughed heartily. But was Obama’s comment, in fact, untrue? Is he deprived by his executive helicopter?The first Sikorsky VH-3D was delivered in […]

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VH-71: Dead Helo Walking

How does the VH-71 survive after this unlikely exchange yesterday between Sen John McCain and President Barack Obama at the White House Fiscal Responsibility Summit? Read the transcript on the jump.

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F-35′s second STOVL prototype ready to fly after today

The BF-2 prototype for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program should be available to start flight tests after today. This is only the third flight-worthy prototype, with AA-1 expected to return to flight soon and BF-1 entering hover pit tests next week.The spotters at Fence Check snapped a great shot of BF-2 during taxi tests […]

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Space tourism to suborbital war fleet

On Friday, I interviewed the US Marine Corps officer leading a campaign to develop a high-speed, point-to-point space travel capability for the US military.I contacted the officer — Lt Col Paul Damphousse — after his organization, the National Security Space Office, posted a fascinating request for information to industry. The RFI asked the market about […]

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HELI-EXPO: R-R lifts veil on Eurocopter “X3″ high-speed prototype

The pseudo-race to develop a high-speed helicopter just got a little more interesting. My colleague John Croft, attending the Heli-Expo in Long Beach, cajoled a confirming quote from Rolls-Royce about a secretive new Eurocopter concept called the X3. [Sikorsky already grabbed X2 for its high-speed prototype. Hmm -- Anybody know who got the X1?] The […]

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Did Skunk Works rip off Eagle Eye?

Skunk Works deserves credit for several of the world’s most amazing and successful aerospace projects: SR-71, U-2, C-130, F-117, F-104, etc, etc. Clearly, the Skunk Works publicity department has no need to embellish the record.That’s why this poster on the Skunk Works web site makes me so curious. Check out the aircraft pictured in the […]

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