In April 2015, the Boeing-Lockheed Martin joint venture United Launch Alliance (ULA) announced the details of its Vulcan platform, a next-generation launch system intended to end US reliance on Russian-built rocket engines. The goal of this new reusable rocket, which is planned to take flight in 2019, is to make future launch services affordable and accessible. Vulcan will have the capabilities to facilitate missions from low-Earth orbit all the way to Pluto.


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Lockheed Martin announced in April 2015 that they have awarded American aerospace and defense company Orbital ATK a USD$90 million contract to provide the attitude control motor (ACM) for Orion's launch abort system (LAS). With the new LAS, the capsule gets separated from the launch vehicle in the case of an in-flight emergency, allowing the astronaut crew to safely escape. Orbital ATK Defense Systems group president Mike Kahn said in a statement:
"This critical work supporting Lockheed Martin on the Orion program recognizes our long history of safety, reliability and innovation."
Cary Ralston, Orbital ATK Defense Systems group missile products division vice president and general manager, is excited about receiving the contract from Lockheed Martin. He said:
"Orion represents the future of manned spaceflight, and will take humans deeper into space than ever before. Working with Lockheed Martin and NASA, Orbital ATK is committed to making spaceflight safer than ever before for our astronauts."
The Orion spacecraft is being designed to carry as many as four astronauts into deep space and then returning them to Earth beginning in 2021. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is the largest defense contractor in the world, with divisions in aerospace, defense, security, and advanced technology. The company employs 116,000 workers worldwide. The company operates in five business segments: Aeronautics, Information Systems & Global Solutions, Missile and Fire Control, Mission Systems and Training, and Space Systems. In 2009, US government contracts accounted for $38.4 billion (85%), foreign government contracts $5.8 billion (13%), and commercial and other contracts for $900 million (2%). ASAP Aerospace, a parts purchasing resource created by ASAP Semiconductor, is a premier logistics and supply chain partner for all aerospace manufacturing and technology-driven companies. ASAP Semiconductor is a leading distributor of Lockheed Martin parts. We are ISO 9001-2008 certified, ASA 100 accredited, and a member of the Aviation Suppliers Association. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive catalogue of both obsolete and in-production Lockheed Martin parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or call 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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After a co-pilot on a Germanwings flight deliberately crashed into the French Alps in March of 2015, aviation commentators have been considering alternate modes of commercial flights, namely sans human pilots. Although automated technology in flights are hardly new, with computer autopilot and navigation auto-corrected by GPS systems and motion sensors, some have promoted the feasibility of entirely robot-driven or remotely operated commercial flights. According to the New York Times, pilots of Boeing 777s spend just seven minutes manually operating their planes while Airbus pilots spend only three to four minutes.The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is making headway in plane automation with a technology known as the Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System (ALIAS). ALIAS is an artificial intelligence equipped with situational awareness capability as well as the ability to control aircraft maneuvers. Likewise, NASA is working on the viability of a ground-based co-pilot remotely operating multiple flights at once. At the agency’s Ames facility, scientists tested the Terminal Sequencing and Spacing software which is supposed to increase efficiency in air traffic by up to 20%, potentially saving up to billions of dollars in annual labor costs of co-pilots. Other suggestions include installing Automatic Ground-Collision Avoidance Systems (Auto-GCAS) technology onto commercial aircraft. The technology is already used on military aircraft, currently integrated onto the US Air Force’s F-16 fleet, after becoming operational in October of last year. Auto-GCAS was first developed in the 1980s as a result of a collaboration between NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, Lockheed Martin, the Air Force Research Laboratory, and the Air Force Test Center. Auto-GCAS senses an aircraft’s altitude, attitude, speed, and proximity to terrain. If the program determines the likelihood of a crash it will automatically correct the aircraft’s course away from collision. However, critics of this idea argue that the technology is still susceptible to security concerns, with the possibility of being hacked into, and that human pilots are still able to override the system’s response. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Lockheed Martin products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Lockheed Martin parts at http://www.asap-aerospace.com/. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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For the fourth year in a row, NASA will be holding the Space App Challenge event in multiple locations across the globe. Part of the NASA incubator innovation program, the Space App Challenge is a three-day coding competition in which over 10,000 participants develop applications, software, hardware, and data visualization platforms which address 35 challenge areas provided by NASA. This year, the competition’s main themes are: outer space, earth, humans, and robotics. Challenges include: developing a “deep space CamSat” or a nano-satellite/CubeSat which can orbit outer space and take pictures during planetary flybys (events of interest), designing a “stream gazer” data visualization tool to animate changes over time in the United States’ stream and river network, and developing a quad-copter drone which can assist in moving five-pound items within a space station or spacecraft. This year IBM will be offering participants free access to their cloud development platform, Bluemix, to facilitate composition, testing, and deployment of their apps. Released in June 2014, Bluemix is a cloud platform as a service (PaaS). Running on SoftLayer infrastructure, the service supports several programming languages and is based on Cloud Foundry open technology. Bluemix offers an Internet of Things sensor-based app as a boilerplate and developers can also work with code which is specially-purposed for data management, mobile, DevOps, and other categories. Bluemix also offers a set of cognitive apps, called Watson, which includes programs such as Visual Recognition, Message Resonance, and Tradeoff Analytics. Two projects from each city will be accepted into a second round of judging. In addition, IBM will offer a separate set of 30 awards for the best use of Bluemix. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of IBM products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current IBM parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In April 2015, Raytheon, the 4th-largest American defense contractor by revenue, has been awarded a contract for Patriot air and missile defense system enhancements. Granted by the United States Army Aviation and Missile Command, the USD$212 million contract calls for Raytheon to provide a series of services which include software development, systems analysis, testing and logistics support, and country-specific systems requirements. Through a shared engineering services agreement, the improvements are funded by the United States along with 12 other Patriot partner nations and will augment the capability and readiness of the system. The primary goal of the contract is to prepare the Patriot to a consistent high-readiness rate and allow it to be ahead of any new threats of today’s battlefield. Contract work will be completed in several locations including Andover, Billerica, Burlington and Tewksbury, Massachusetts; El Segundo, California; El Paso, Texas; Huntsville, Alabama; Norfolk, Virginia; Pelham, New Hampshire; and White Sands, New Mexico, United States. Patriot is a long-range, all-altitude, all-weather air defense system jointly produced by Raytheon and Lockheed Martin. Designed to defend soldiers against aircraft, ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles, the Patriot stands as one of the most advanced defense systems. There are currently 14 nations using the Patriot: United States, United Arab Emirates, Taiwan, Egypt, Germany, South Korea, Spain, Greece, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, and Spain. With a primary product focus on weapons and military and commercial electronics worldwide, Raytheon has met over $24 billion in yearly revenue. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts and employs over 63,000 workers in facilities around the world. Over 90% of Raytheon’s revenue was obtained from military contracts and it is considered the fifth-largest military contractor in the world. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Raytheon products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Raytheon parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-866-756-8540 for a quote.


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Lockheed Martin announced in April 2015 that it will be the prime contractor of a potential foreign military sale (FMS) program of AGM-114R1 Hellfire missiles and associated equipment to the Republic of Korea. The sale, which is estimated to be around USD$81 million, calls for a supply of 400 AGM-114R1 Hellfire II semi-active laser missiles with containers, 100 ATM-114Q air training missiles, and 12 M36E8 Hellfire II captive air training missiles. South Korea intends to use these Hellfire missiles to supplement its existing missile capability and current weapons inventory, while at the same time strengthening its homeland defense to ward off various regional threats. The sale of these missiles is also expected to contribute to South Korea's force modernization goals and enhance interoperability with the US forces. South Korea, which is one of the major political and economic powers in East Asia and the Western Pacific, is a key partner of the United States in ensuring peace and stability in the region. By addressing the legitimate security and defense requirements of South Korea, the sale will contribute directly to the United States’ foreign policy and national security objectives. Currently, Lockheed Martin is looking forward to get the contract approval from the US State Department. The AGM-114 Hellfire, designed by Lockheed Martin, is a precision-strike, multi-purpose missile designed primarily to provide anti-armor capabilities for attack helicopters against a wide range of targets in the battlefield. Designed for launch from multiple air, sea and ground platforms, the 100-pound missile features semi-active laser seekers, a guidance computer and steering control, as well as propulsion systems, and can also be used by lock-on before or after launch for enhanced platform survivability. By defense revenue, Lockheed Martin is the largest defense contractor in the world. Lockheed Martin is an American company operating divisions in aerospace, defense, security, and advanced technology. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, the company employs 116,000 workers worldwide. The company operates in five business segments: Aeronautics, Information Systems & Global Solutions, Missile and Fire Control, Mission Systems and Training, and Space Systems. In 2009, US government contracts accounted for $38.4 billion (85%), foreign government contracts $5.8 billion (13%), and commercial and other contracts for $900 million (2%). The company’s net sales for 2014 were $45.6 billion. The Missile and Fire Control segment of Lockheed Martin generated revenues of $7.1 billion in FY14, contributing to 15.5% of the total revenues. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Lockheed Martin products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Lockheed Martin parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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Gorgon Stare, a remote-controlled, aircraft-based persistent wide area airborne surveillance (WAAS) system developed by Sierra Nevada has received operational clearance from the United States Air Force. Gorgon Stare is a spherical array of nine cameras installed onboard the General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) that provides real-time situational awareness for both soldiers and commanders involved in large scale operations. The upgraded system, known as Increment 2, provides a four-fold increase in area coverage and a two-fold improvement in resolution compared to its predecessor, the Increment 1. The Gorgon Stare Increment 2 is considered to be one of the most advanced forms of Wide Area Aerial Surveillance to date and its 368 cameras allow a surveillance area of 40 square miles. Sierra Nevada ISR Persistent Surveillance Systems business area vice-president Dave Bullock said in a statement that "the Increment 2 system will make a significant contribution to preserving the lives of our deployed troops." Increment 2 also incorporates an electro-optical sensor derived from the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and BAE Systems' Argus technology, and an infrared sensor manufactured by Exelis. Headquartered in Sparks, Nevada, the Sierra Nevada Corporation is an American privately-held electronic systems provider and systems integrator specializing in microsatellites, energy, telemedicine, nanotechnology, and commercial orbital transportation services. The Sierra Nevada Company employs over 3000 people. SNC operates six different business areas, and works out of 31 locations in 17 states along with numerous customer support sites located throughout the world. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Sierra Nevada products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Sierra Nevada parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In March of 2015, the US Army announced that they will be installing a new communications capability onto a select few of their Boeing C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft. Beginning in May, an in-flight technology known as enroute mission command capability (EMC2) will allow soldiers to communicate via internet, rather than solely rely on conventional voice and data communications. Although commercial airliners have been offering Wi-Fi technology to passengers for a long time, this marks the first occasion that military aircraft will be equipped with internet connectivity to this extent. From EMC2, the aircraft will communicate with satellite terminals and pilots will be able to access a range of applications. According to Lt. Col. Joel Babbitt, product manager for Warfighter Information Network Increment, airmen will get “the full mission command suite of applications” enhancing their “situational awareness, their ability to flexibly and dynamically change the plan.” From the aircraft real-time mission updates, chat, voice, video teleconferencing, and video feed can be accessed. The 82nd Airborne brigade will be receiving the technology by the end of fiscal year 2017. The Air Force has also announced its intentions to equip some of their aircraft with EMC2 by 2018. The US Army believes that the new technology will help diminish the vulnerability of troops in an airborne operation, reducing the communications lag between the moment a soldier jumps out of an aircraft and lands on the ground. The Warfighter Information Network Increment (WIN-T Increment 1) is undergoing a long overdue upgrade of its connectivity systems. The organization is approximately ten years old and has only recently begun to upgrade its information technology systems. The program is updating its modems and servers, reducing the amount of necessary equipment by 30 percent. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Boeing products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Boeing parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In April of 2015, GE Aviation announced that they have received a contract from the US Army to perform conceptual design and trade analysis on their rotorcraft advanced engine integrated controls system (RAEICS) program. The goal of this program, which will take place over the next two years, is to enable innovative, high performance propulsion capabilities for future vertical lift (FVL) platforms. Specifically, the program is expected to assess innovative engine controls technologies and architectures, as well as explore various approaches to integrate the advanced engine controls system with vehicle systems and subsystems. General Electric has partnered with Sikorsky Aircraft to support the program, also currently supports the Army’s FVL development efforts through multiple programs such as FATE, the future affordable turbine engine program. Harry Nahatis, GE Aviation’s advanced turboshaft programs general manager, said in a statement: "This RAEICS contract will enable GE to offer more innovative approaches to engine control systems for FVL." GE is also working with the army on designing other advanced technology programs, including the advanced variable speed power turbine, autonomous sustainment technology for rotorcraft operations, alternative engine concepts design and analysis programs, as well as the advanced affordable turbine engine project. Headquartered in Evendale, Ohio, GE Aviation is a world-leading provider of jet and turboprop engines, components and integrated systems for commercial, military, business and general aviation aircraft, and ship propulsion applications. GE Aviation has a global service network to support these offerings. It is a subsidiary of General Electric which is one of the world’s largest corporations. Apart from technologies developed through RAEICS and FATE programs, GE invests USD$1.8 billion in advanced technologies, such as 3D aero designs, ceramic matrix composite materials, and additive manufactured components every year. In 2011, Fortune ranked GE the 6th-largest firm in the U.S. as well as the 14th most profitable and for 2012, GE’s brand was valued at an estimated USD$28.8 billion. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of GE products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current GE parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested to buy GE Aviation manufacturer parts, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In February 2009, the US Air Force awarded a $2.95 billion contract to Boeing for the addition of fifteen C-17s. The Boeing C-17 Globemaster III is a T-tailed, high-wing transport vehicle for the military. Its four engine makeup allows it to carry weights up to 169,000 pounds (76,657 kg), thus accommodating a crew of three, including the pilot, co-pilot, and loadmaster. Through the utilization of an engine exhaust and propulsive lift system, the C-17 can land on small airfields and short runways. Another design feature is its backing capabilities, allowing a thrust reverse on up to a two percent gradient slope. Furthermore, Boeing used a multifunction cathode-ray tube display designed by Honeywell. The flight control system is backed up by a mechanical-actuator system. In addition to the Honeywell system, Boeing used two Lockheed Martin processors, one Hamilton Sundstrand management computer, four Pratt & Whitney PW2040 turbofan engines, and a Northrop Grumman infrared countermeasures system. The PW2040 turbofans is a military designation-F117-PW-100 with a 40,440 pound thrust, reaching a cruise speed between Mach 0.74 and 0.77. Several international orders have been place for the Boeing C-17 throughout the years. NATO purchased three C-17s in September 2006. Two years later, Qatar announced a contract for two C-17s, with the last delivered in 2009. A $4.1 billion contract was placed by the Indian Ministry of Defense for ten C-17s as long as the aircraft met the Indian military’s requirements. With no surprise, the C-17 exceeded all expectations was delivered throughout the following years. The Boeing Company has flourished since its founding in July 1916. With over 745 different aircrafts and 10 satellites, the company has expanded to more than 165,529 employees as of the end of 2014. This company will continue to expand with the C-17 and other extraordinary aircrafts. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Boeing products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Boeing parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In March of 2015, the United States Army took delivery of the first training version of Airbus Group’s UH-72A Lakota light utility helicopter at its production facility in Columbus, Mississippi. This helicopter will join seven others that have already received the training configuration modifications and have been deployed to Fort Rucker in Alabama in preparation for the Lakota’s formal introduction into the training curriculum that will take place in early 2016. To date, 411 Lakota helicopters have been ordered by the US Department of Defense—400 of which will be used by the Army. This latest delivery makes a total of 332 aircraft that have been delivered to the customer. Airbus Group chairman and chief executive officer Allan McArtor said in a statement: "For a program to succeed in the current budget environment, affordability and reliable program performance must accompany mission flexibility. Since awarding the contract in 2006, the Army has managed this program unfailingly on cost and on schedule, and we're proud to see that record continue as we deliver the latest configuration of this versatile, multi-mission aircraft." The UH-72A Lakota is an unarmed, utility militarized version of the Eurocopter EC-145 helicopter and is primarily used for search-and-rescue, medical evacuations, homeland security, VIP transport, and disaster response and relief, as well as combat flight and pilot sustainment training missions. Currently operated by the US Army and National Guard, as well as the US Naval Test Pilot School, the helicopter can also be used for general support and counter-narcotics operations. Safety features include a high level of redundancy with a twin-engine design, and redundant hydraulic, electrical and engine control systems. The crashworthy airframe and seats also contribute to the UH-72A's operational safety and survivability. Headquartered in Toulouse, France, Airbus Group is a European multinational aerospace and defense corporation that manufactures aircraft parts as well as civil airliners. Airbus was originally formed as the European Aeronautic Defense and Space Company (EADS), but in January of 2014 was reorganized as Airbus Group—combining the divisions for development and marketing of civil and military aircraft, as well as communications systems, missiles, space rockets, helicopters, satellites, and related systems. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Airbus products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Airbus parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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NASA has been awarded the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum’s Trophy for Current Achievement for its Kepler planet-hunting mission. It is the museum’s highest group honor, and was awarded to the Kepler mission team in a ceremony in Washington DC. NASA continues to lead the way in space exploration, and the Smithsonian specifically wanted to recognize Dr. Stamatios “Tom” Krimigis for his efforts. "The winners of the 2015 Trophy Awards have significantly advanced space exploration and discovery in major ways," Gen. Jack Dailey, Director of the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, said in a statement. "Few individuals have contributed more significantly to our knowledge of the solar system in a single career than Dr. Krimigis, and the Kepler Mission Team’s accomplishments have altered our views of possible life on other planets in our universe." The Kepler mission has discovered 1,019 exoplanets since the launch of the mission in March of 2009. To put that in perspective, that is over half of all known worlds outside of our solar system. According to Ball Aerospace, during its six years in orbit, Kepler has discovered: • Over 3,600 planetary candidates • Over 700 multi-planet systems • The first small planet in the habitable zone (Kepler-22b) • Three Earth-sized planets in the habitable zones around their stars • The smallest exoplanets ever detected (KOI-961.01, KOI-961.02, KOI-961.03) • Five worlds (Kepler-16b, Kepler-34b, Kepler-35b, Kepler-47b, Kepler-47c) that orbit around two stars, establishing a new class of planetary system Ball Aerospace works as the prime contractor for the Kepler mission. They are responsible for the photometer, spacecraft, system integration, testing, and on-orbit operations for the Discovery class mission. Ball Aerospace has used its expert knowledge in instruments from successes like the Hubble Space Telescope in the photometer for Kepler and the spacecraft design used in Deep Impact for providing power, communications, and telescope pointing. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Ball Aerospace products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Ball Aerospace parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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Announced on March 23rd, NASA awarded Orbital ATK a USD$253 million contract to build a U.S. civilian polar-orbiting weather satellite. They expect to allocate another $240 million for the construction of two additional satellites in the near future. This Joint Polar Satellite System (JPSS)-2 is expected to be built by July 31, 2021 and launched seven years later on July 31, 2028. Several variations of the JPSS is still being discussed. The $130 million JPSS-3 will launch in 2024, while the JPSS-4 is only worth $87 million and has an expected launch date of 2026. In general, the JPSS has the functionality to record and provide global weather coverage. This can be essential in preparing for natural disasters and harsh weather conditions, thus, saving lives, money, and resources.


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In March of 2015, two test F-35Bs were flown testing the efficacy of a recent installation of software patches meant to address issues with the fighter jets’ communication avionics systems. Manufactured by Lockheed Martin, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is undergoing its final development stage. The F-35 program is the most expensive project in the most recent military procurement budget, accounting for 20% of the Department of Defense’s total acquisition costs (which is currently at $1.6 billion USD). Fraught with multiple delays and technical difficulties, the F-35 will cost approximately $1.5 trillion over its lifetime.


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Chuck Norris roundhouse kicked his way into the debate involving the pending retirement of the Warthog, the nickname for the A-10 Thunderbolt, a close air support jet originally manufactured by Fairchild and, subsequently, Northrop Grumman. The Warthogs are planned for retirement in 2015 in favor of the developing F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, one of the most expensive procurement projects ever undertaken by the United States military. In an online exclusive for WND (formerly WorldNet Daily), the frequently “meme-d” action star argued that the Warthog’s low-flying and tactical close air support accuracy is not replaceable by other high-performance, high-altitude, and technologically advanced models in the military’s aircraft fleet.


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Final assembly on the first prototype of Saab’s Gripen fighter is “well under way.” The fuselage sections for the Gripen E/NG fighter test aircraft 39-8 have already been assembled. There was much rejoicing when the pieces fit together immediately without any modifications. It shows that Saab is on schedule to roll out the aircraft in 2016. The deal with Brazil is worth $4.55 billion USD and was finalized on Wednesday, March 11, 2015. Under the contract, 36 Brazilian next-generation Gripen fighter aircraft will be delivered. Covered in the order are 28 single-seat Gripen NG aircraft and 8 two-seater aircraft. The first aircraft is scheduled to be delivered in 2019. The contract expires in 2024. Included in the contract is the complete turnkey weapon system, training, spare parts, support, planning and maintenance.


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In March of 2015, Northrop Grumman announced that they have awarded a contract to the Intel subsidiary Wind River to deliver its VxWorks 653 platform for integration onto the Black Hawk UH-60V helicopter. This commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) platform belongs to Wind River’s product portfolio of safe and secure operating systems and was ordered as part of Northrop Grumman's latest helicopter digitization avionics mission equipment package. The platform which was recently updated is designed to support delivery of safety-critical, integrated modular avionics (IMA) applications.


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The United States State Department has approved the sale of three Sikorsky Black Hawk helicopters to Mexico to help in the war against drugs. The proposed deal would be worth USD$110 million for the three helicopters plus communications, radar, weaponry, training, and logistical services. This deal would help Mexico’s ability to fight against drug cartels, organized crime, and perform other counter-narcotics operations. Mexico has a notorious drug problem, and with drug dealers running rampant help from a foreign supplier was necessary. The natural course of action was to look north of the border to the US, their closest neighbor with the most advanced technology.“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a strategic partner. Mexico has been a strong partner in combating organized crime and drug trafficking organizations,” said the United States Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) in a statement. Since 2008, Mexico has averaged around 20,000 homicides per year. There was a reported 112,000 between 2008 and 2012, and 23,000 in 2013. Much of this can be attributed to the drug war, with opposing cartels fighting over highly-profitable deals and the counter-operations trying to stop it. “The sale of these UH-60M helicopters to Mexico will significantly increase and strengthen its capability to provide in-country airlift support for its forces engaged in counter-drug operations,” said DCSA. The UH-60 Black Hawk was developed by Sikorsky, and has been operational in the US Army since 1978. Variants of the Black Hawk are operational or have been ordered by 25 international customers including China, Egypt, and the Royal Australian Army. Black Hawk helicopters have plenty of experience in combat, as they have logged over four million flying hours conducting various missions in countries like Grenada, Panama, Kuwait, Somalia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Sikorsky products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Sikorsky parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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At the end of last week, the United States Air Force announced their completion of a new aircraft coating for fighter aircraft including Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Lightning II. With funds from the USAF’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, the Texas Research Institute worked closely with the Air Force to develop the new coating called Proteckt. It offers improved high temperature abrasion resistance that could directly improve the reliability and maintainability of weapon systems. Major George Woodworth, the Air Force Research Laboratory SBIR project manager, said in a statement: “This is roughly a 2,000 percent improvement in the average time between coating failures and directly addresses a current F-35 need.” TRI evaluated a variety of raw materials, developed numerous coating formulations in conjunction with the experimental design development process, and eventually identified the best formulations. “We anticipate that the new material will provide the program an estimated $14 million in life-cycle cost savings,” said Woodworth. These new coatings were developed to replace the current abrasion-resistant coatings which are filled polyurethane paints. Although these paints have moderate high-temperature resistance, they have very poor long term wear resistance and they degrade over time which results in the need for frequent repair and recoating. The current coatings can also cause damage to the underlying composite material of the aircraft. The new Proteckt coating cures faster, is resistant to standard aircraft fluids, meets color and gloss requirements, and exhibits good adhesion, even after accelerated fluid exposures. Lockheed Martin, an American based company with divisions in aerospace, defense, security, and advanced technology. Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, the company employs 116,000 workers worldwide. Their F-35 aircraft is designed to dominate the skies. It combines the 5th Generation characteristics of radar evading stealth, supersonic speed and extreme agility with the most powerful and comprehensive integrated sensor package of any fighter aircraft in history. The new Proteckt coating will fortify the aircraft even more. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Lockheed Martin products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Lockheed Martin parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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The United States Army is set to acquire nineteen Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft vehicles (UAV) from General Atomics Aeronautical Systems in Poway. According to the Defense Department, the deal is worth nearly USD$133 million and includes a variety of support equipment. The MQ-1C Gray Eagle is a medium-altitude, long-endurance (MALE) UAV. It can fly continuously for twenty-five hours at up to 167 KTAS at altitudes of up to 29,000 feet. It carries over half a ton of internal and external payload, and is able to fire four Hellfire missiles. According to General Atomics Aeronautical, the aircraft has a wing span of 56 feet, a length of 28 feet, and its powerplant is a Thielert 165 HP heavy-fuel engine. Its objective is to provide long-endurance, persistent intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, and tactical strike capabilities. Some of the features and benefits of the Gray Eagle include:
  • Technologically advanced derivative of the combat-proven Predator UAV
  • Dedicated to direct operational control by U.S. Army field commanders
  • Unprecedented reliability
    • Triple-redundant avionics and flight controls
    • Redundant flight control surfaces
  • Common Data Link (CDL) line-of-sight communications/air data relay communications
  • Satellite communications
  • Open, modular architecture supports integration of three payloads simultaneously, with capacity for growth
  • Automatic takeoff and landing reduces pilot workload
  • De-icing system
  • HFE offsets the logistical need for special fuels on the battlefield
  • Controlled by the U.S. Army One System Ground Control Station (OSGCS)
  • C-130 transportable
The existing operational fleet of Predator B UAVs – which are known as the MQ-9 Reaper – recently reached a total of one million flight hours, the majority of which were in combat. The Reaper was able to reach this milestone by flying 78,606 sorties since its debut on February 2nd, 2001. The aircraft is flown over 700 hours per day by the US Air Force, Italian Air Force, UK Air Force, French Air Force, US Department of Homeland Security, and NASA. Via our proprietary website ASAP Aerospace, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of General Atomics products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current General Atomics parts at www.asap-aerospace.com. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-aerospace.com or 866-756-8540 for a quote.


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