Archive: Air Force

North: F-15 Grounding Indicative of Challenges of Flying Aging Inventory  

By Michael Sirak FORWARD OPERATING BASE, Southwest Asia–The current grounding of the Air Force’s fleet of F-15 fighter jets shows the challenges and dangers of operating an aging inventory, the top Air Force general in the Middle East/Near East region said here last week. "I think the key piece that most America does not understand […]

Reaper Unmanned Aircraft Becoming An Increasing Presence In Afghanistan

By Michael Sirak Southwest Asia–Both the United Kingdom and United States now are operating General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI)-built Reaper remotely piloted aircraft over the skies of Afghanistan, and, as of last week, U.S. Air Force assets have effectively employed the missile and bomb types that they currently carry against anti-government insurgents there, according to […]

Appropriations Report Would Put Air Force On Track To Buy More F-22s

By Jen DiMascio Lawmakers are supporting the Air Force’s position that it needs 20 more F-22 Raptor stealth fighter aircraft, urging the service to extend its current multiyear contract with Lockheed Martin [LMT]. Language in the conference report on the FY ’08 Defense Appropriations Bill suggests that the service pull $526 million in fiscal year […]

Boeing Teams With Northrop Grumman On B-52 Core Component Jammer

By Michael Sirak Boeing [BA] has joined forces with Northrop Grumman [NOC] to offer the Air Force an affordable and comparatively low-risk solution to installing powerful jamming pods on the B-52H bomber aircraft so that the venerable platform could disrupt enemy air defense radar from standoff distances in addition to its normal strike roles, according […]

Air Force Buying Laser-Guided Mavericks As Interim Moving-Target Attack Capability

The Air Force says it intends to task Raytheon [RTN] soon to supply 450 AGM-65 Maverick surface-attack missiles with a new laser guidance section as a near-term means to attack moving targets. Service officials say they anticipate awarding a contract to Raytheon next month for the missiles, which are known as Laser Mavericks. They will […]

Raytheon Selected To Supply Modern Radars For Air Force’s F-15E Fighter Fleet

By Michael Sirak Raytheon [RTN] beat out Northrop Grumman [NOC] last week in the competition to provide advanced modern radars for the Air Force’s fleet of 224 F-15E Strike Eagle multirole fighter aircraft before the end of next decade. Boeing, the prime contractor for upgrading F-15Es, said on Nov. 1 it chose Raytheon after "a […]

Tactics In War On Terror Cause Rethink of Air Force Weapons Designs

By Michael Sirak The Air Force is realizing from recent combat that there is a need to re-examine how it designs some of its air-to-ground weapons, according to senior service munitions developers. There has been ample discussion resulting from the experiences of applying airpower against insurgents in Afghanistan and Iraq on the need for bombs […]

Air Force Moves To Modernize Infrastructure At Weapons Test Ranges

By Michael Sirak The Air Force is pursuing a series of initiatives to modernize the aging infrastructure at its test ranges so that it can accurately evaluate new types of sophisticated weapons and share test equipment among ranges, according to senior service officials. "The equipment is just about worn out at our test ranges," Judy […]

Raytheon: Air Force Used Lased Maverick In Combat For First Time In June

The Air Force employed an AGM-65E laser-guided Maverick surface-attack missile in combat operations for the first time in June, Raytheon [RTN], the missile’s maker, said yesterday. Although the Laser Maverick has been in service for several decades with the Navy and Marine Corps, the Air Force’s decision to start using it came as a result […]

Air Force Issues Draft Revised Solicitation For New Rescue Helicopter

The Air Force recently issued the draft version of its newly revised solicitation for its next-generation rescue helicopter, the CSAR-X, giving the three industry teams vying to supply the aircraft until the end of the month to provide feedback. The draft document, known as Amendment 5, is the Air Force’s newest response to resolve a […]