Boeing to provide next-generation GPS Ground Systems Support to US Air Force

Boeing said that, as part of the Raytheon team awarded the space-based Global Positioning System (GPS) advanced control segment program (OCX), it will develop portions of the U.S. Air Force’s new ground control segment. GPS OCX will provide more secure, accurate, and precise navigation around the world for military, humanitarian and commercial applications. The development contract, awarded recently by the Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center’s GPS Wing, is valued at more than $880 million over six years, including five option years for sustainment. Boeing has provided ground operations sustainment support for the current GPS II fleet for nearly Read more

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RUAG wins order for state-of-the-art European aircraft radar

Thales has awarded RUAG Aviation an order worth 5.5 million Swiss francs to produce a subassembly for the RBE2 radar for France’s Rafale fighter jet. The radar is the most powerful currently used in European fighter jets. The first deliveries are planned for the second half of 2011 and will initially be integrated into the Rafale for the French market, with export customers following at a later date. These will include the Swiss Air Force, should Switzerland choose the Rafale.

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GE Rolls-Royce Fighter Engine Team hits afterburner on third new engine

The GE Rolls-Royce Fighter Engine Team has successfully hit full afterburner on its third new production-configuration engine, continuing a year of major progress and milestones for the F136 program. The afterburner tests were conducted in an advanced testing facility at GE. All major objectives have been reached during this phase of testing, which included an engine nozzle common to both F-35 engine programs. The Joint Strike Fighter aircraft was designed from its inception to include interchangeability with the F136 engine. Six F136 engines are scheduled for testing this year, to measure engine performance and endurance as the competitive engine for Read more

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Second Airbus Military A400M runs all four engines

The second Airbus Military A400M, known as MSN2, has run all four of its Europrop International (EPI) TP400 turboprop engines in a series of trials after being handed over for flight test. The aircraft is expected to taxi for the first time shortly and to make its maiden flight from Seville, Spain in a few weeks, joining MSN1 in the sky. MSN2 will remain based at Seville during the flight-test campaign.

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Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter succeeds in first vertical landing

A supersonic Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II stealth fighter rode more than 41,000 pounds of thrust to a vertical landing for the first time, confirming its required ability to land in confined areas both ashore and afloat. Pilot Graham Tomlinson performed an 80-knot (93 miles per hour) short takeoff from Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., at 1:09 p.m. EDT. About 13 minutes into the flight, he positioned the aircraft 150 feet above the airfield, where he commanded the F-35 to hover for approximately one minute then descend to the runway.

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