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28 Apr 20. Fully equipped field hospital for the Italian Army. The NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) will deliver a fully equipped field hospital to Italy at the end of the year, after the Italian Army requested support from the NSPA before the coronavirus outbreak to augment and modernise its military field equipment used in Ministry of Defence authorised missions.
Initial delivery was expected at the beginning of 2021 but given the current national health emergency, it is now scheduled for completion by the end of 2020, increasing the current hospital infrastructure and allowing a stronger response capacity in case of similar needs in the future. The requirement foresees structures based on interconnected, containerised, shelters and tents, divided into: a triage area, first aid, x-ray and ultrasound laboratories, a surgical preparatory room, operation and hospitalisation areas, a pharmacy and other necessary medical functions.
The contract for the provision of the hospital has been awarded to the Italian company RI Group which specialises in deployable solutions in operational theatres. This comes after an international competitive bidding process which was launched by the NSPA, and the current contract includes the option for three additional hospitals that can be supplied upon official request from the Italian Army to NSPA. (Source: ESD Spotlight)
29 Apr 20. HHI launches fourth Daegu-class frigate for South Korean navy. South Korean shipbuilder Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) has launched the fourth of eight Daegu (FFX-II)-class guided-missile frigates on order for the Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN). Named Donghae (with pennant number 822), the 122.1 m-long warship entered the water during a ceremony held on 29 April at HHI’s facilities in the southeastern coastal city of Ulsan, and is expected to be handed over to the service in late 2021. The first two frigates of the class – ROKS Daegu (818), which entered service in March 2018, and Gyeongnam (819), which was launched on 21 June 2019 – were built by South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME), which will also build the fifth and sixth ships of the class. (Source: Jane’s)
29 Apr 20. Submarine Suffren Begin Sea Trials. Florence Parly, Minister of the Armed Forces, welcomes the first dive in the Suffren at sea, carried out on Tuesday April 28, 2020, after her departure from the naval base of Cherbourg. The Suffren is the first of six Barracuda nuclear attack submarines. Led by the French Armaments Directorate (DGA), these sea trials, which will last several months, will confirm the robustness and efficiency of the submarine before her hand-over to the French Navy. At dockside as at sea, the test campaign will follow the specific health prevention and precautionary measures linked to the COVID-19 pandemic. The SSNs are real instruments of power, enduring and discreet. Their missions are varied, and range from support to the deterrent force, protection of the carrier strike group, intelligence gathering, and anti-submarine and anti-ship warfare. Suffren-type SSNs will add a land-attack cruise missile capability and will be optimized for the deployment of special forces. With the Suffren, France is starting to renew its fleet of SSNs, which entered service in the 1980s, and will thus have modern submarines among the most efficient in the world. With this first outing at sea, the Barracuda program crosses a major milestone after the launch of Suffren, on July 12, 2019, by the President of the Republic. Over the past eight months, the program’s industrial and state teams have successfully conducted all of the Suffren’s dockside tests aimed at verifying the proper functioning of its various systems and equipment. Three prerequisites have been validated: the combat system has reached the end of its tests on land and is ready for the continuation of assessments at sea; the nuclear reactor was started at the end of 2019 after loading its fuel and, finally, in January 2020 the submarine was floated to validate the first waterproofness tests.
Started in the English Channel, these sea trials will later take the Suffren to the Atlantic and finally to the Mediterranean. Under the supervision of engineers and technicians from the DGA, the French Atomic Energy and Alternative Energies Commission (CEA), Naval Group and TechnicAtome, they will be carried out by submariners of the French Navy who will gradually check all of the boat’s technical and operational capabilities.
They are due to last several months until her delivery scheduled for later this year. During the entire phase of sea trials, the boat remains the property of Naval Group. She is placed under the responsibility of the French Navy for operational command and as a delegated nuclear operator. As the contracting authority for the Barracuda program, the DGA is responsible for testing up to the acceptance of the boat and her delivery to the French Navy.
The DGA worked with the CEA, the French Navy and industrial prime contractors to allow the program to continue under specific health conditions. Since March 16, the business continuity plan for the Cherbourg site and the Barracuda program takes into account all measures to ensure the health and safety of personnel.
In particular, all personnel on board for sea trials have been placed in preventive quarantine, and have been tested negative for COVID-19. On board, wearing a mask will be mandatory at all times and the rules of hygiene and disinfection will be strictly applied. (Source: defense-aerospace.com/French Armed Forces Ministry)
24 Apr 20. USN Accepts Delivery of Future USS Delbert D. Black. The Navy accepted delivery of the guided missile destroyer Delbert D. Black (DDG 119) from Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) Ingalls shipbuilding division, Apr. 24. Accepting delivery of DDG 119 represents the official transfer of the ship from the shipbuilder to the Navy. Prior to delivery, the ship successfully conducted a series of at-sea and pier-side trials to demonstrate its material and operational readiness.
The 68th Arleigh Burke class destroyer honors Delbert D. Black, the first Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, and will be the first naval ship to bear his name. Black is known for guiding the Navy through the Vietnam conflict and ensuring enlisted leadership was properly represented Navy-wide by initiating the Master Chief program.
“The DDG 51 shipbuilding program and Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Gulf Coast are proud to accept delivery of Delbert D. Black on behalf of the Navy, an look forward to her commissioning later this year,” said Capt. Seth Miller, DDG 51 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. “Ingalls has delivered another highly capable platform that will sail from our shores and help protect the nation for decades to come.”
The DDG 51 class ships currently being constructed are Aegis Baseline 9 Integrated Air and Missile Defense destroyers with increased computing power and radar upgrades that improve detection and reaction capabilities against modern air warfare and Ballistic Missile Defense threats.
In addition to Delbert D. Black, HII’s Pascagoula shipyard is also currently in production on the future destroyers Frank E. Peterson Jr. (DDG 121), and Lenah H. Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG 123), as well as the Flight III ships, Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125), and Ted Stevens (DDG 128).
As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all destroyers, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships, and boats and craft. (Source: ASD Network)
24 Apr 20. Megadestroyer Zumwalt Delivered to the US Navy After Years of Setbacks. The Navy has accepted delivery of a next-generation stealth destroyer more than three years after its commissioning, the service announced Friday. The destroyer Zumwalt has a working combat system and will move onto a new phase of developmental and sea testing, according to a news release from Naval Sea Systems Command. The ship was commissioned in 2016 and broke down a month later while passing through the Panama Canal. The $4bn ship has since faced other delays and cost overruns. Navy officials are calling the delivery a “major milestone” for the Zumwalt, known as DDG 1000.
“The combat test team, consisting of … sailors, Raytheon engineers, and Navy field activity teams, have worked diligently to get USS Zumwalt ready for more complex, multi-mission at-sea testing,” Capt. Kevin Smith, a program manager with the Navy’s Program Executive Office, Ships, said in a statement. “I am excited to begin demonstrating the performance of this incredible ship.”
The Navy cut its original plans to buy more than two dozen of the new ships down to three. The Government Accountability Office last year slammed the Navy for ongoing problems with the 155mm deck guns that were planned for the Zumwalt-class destroyers.
In development, the service found the cost for a single round for the guns was about $800,000, leaving it essentially inoperable.
The Navy in 2018 changed the destroyers’ primary mission from land attack to offensive surface strike. Modifications needed to make that switch cost about $1bn, the GAO noted.
The Zumwalt is joining the U.S. Pacific Fleet and can officially count toward the Navy’s ship totals. Its shape, structure and antenna arrangements “significantly reduce radar cross section, making the ship less visible” to enemies, according to the release.
“Every day the ship is at sea, the officers and crew learn more about her capability, and can immediately inform the continued development of tactics, techniques, and procedures to not only integrate Zumwalt into the fleet, but to advance the Navy’s understanding of operations with a stealth destroyer,” said Capt. Andrew Carlson, the Zumwalt’s commanding officer.
The second of the Zumwalt-class destroyers, the Michael Monsoor, is homeported in San Diego and is undergoing combat systems activation. The third and final ship of the class, the future Lyndon B. Johnson, is under construction in Maine. (Source: Military.com)
23 Apr 20. Chinese navy commissions nuclear-powered submarine. China has recently commissioned a “new strategic nuclear-powered submarine”, according to a 22 April report by the state-owned Global Times newspaper.
Written to reflect recent achievements of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) in celebration of the 71st anniversary of the establishment of the naval service, the report refers to “new weapons” entering service including the Type 055 destroyer, the first domestically built aircraft carrier, and new anti-submarine patrol aircraft (the KQ-200), as well as the new submarine. The report does not identify the type of submarine but the description that it is a “strategic” asset suggests that it is referring to a nuclear ballistic missile-carrying submarine (SSBN). Although referred to as a new weapon, it is unlikely that this is the first of the next-generation Type 096 SSBNs. The interval between launch and commissioning of the first Type 096 could be up to four years and a new design has not yet become evident in satellite imagery. (Source: Jane’s)
29 Apr 20. Canadian Cyclone helo crash. A Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) Sikorsky CH-148 Cyclone maritime and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) helicopter crashed into the sea off Greece on 29 April, the service confirmed. The S-92-derived helicopter was operating from the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) vessel HMCS Fredericton as part of Canada’s Operation ‘Reassurance’ mission in Central and Eastern Europe when contact was lost over the Mediterranean Sea. The RCAF tweeted that a search and rescue effort had been launched, although there had been no further developments at the time of writing. According to Greek media reports, there were six personnel onboard the helicopter. (Source: Jane’s)
24 Apr 20. TAI receives first Leonardo ATR 72-600 TMPA for final flight tests. Leonardo (formerly Alenia Aermacchi) has redelivered the first of six ATR 72-600 Turkish Maritime Patrol Aircraft (TMPAs) to Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) following the completion of certification activities. The TMPA landed at TAI’s facilities in Akinci to start final testing at the beginning of March, TAI announced in its in-house magazine, published on 18 April. The TMPA will be handed over to the Turkish Navy following the completion of final testing in the coming months. Leonardo is supplying a total of six ATR 72-600 TMPAs configured for anti-submarine warfare (ASW) operations under a contract signed with Turkey’s then Defence Industries Undersecretariat (now Presidency of Defence Industries – SSB) in 2013. (Source: Jane’s)
26 Apr 20. US Navy receives final Block 2 Super Hornet. The US Navy (USN) has received into service its final Block 2 Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet combat aircraft, ahead of the retrofit and new-build Block 3 upgrade effort. The USN announced on 24 April that the 608th (322 single-seat F/A-18Es and 286 twin-seat F/A-18Fs) retrofitted and new-build Block 2 Super Hornet to be delivered since 2005 was handed over on 17 April. Aircraft F/A-18E 322 is being delivered to Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 34, based at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia.
“Delivery of this last production Block 2 Super Hornet is […] a stepping stone along the path to continuously evolving our platforms to meet the US Navy’s ever-evolving needs,” said Captain Jason Denney, Program Manager of the F/A-18 and EA-18 Program Office (PMA-265). “Block 3 delivery is just steps behind and the production lines won’t miss a beat, with the first two US Navy Block 3 test jets delivering in the next two months, followed by delivery of 24 E/F aircraft over the next year for our international customer, Kuwait.”
Capt Denney’s noting of the “continuously evolving” philosophy of the USN’s aircraft platforms in general mirrors earlier comments made to Jane’s and other defence media regarding the Hornet-series in particular. With the first F/A-18A/B Hornet designed to be a multimission, programmable strike fighter, the F/A-18C/D variants of the late 1980s built on this with enhanced avionics and a more lethal systems and weapons package. The F/A-18C/D then became the F/A-18C/D Night Attack in the early 1990s before the Hornet became the F/A-18E/F Block 1 Super Hornet in the late 1990s. (Source: Jane’s)
PLANT CLOSURES, JOB LOSSES AND STRIKES
29 Apr 20. Logistics Commander in Korea Fired Due to Loss of Confidence. A commander of the logistics readiness squadron at Osan Air Base, South Korea, has been removed from his post due to a loss of confidence in his ability to lead. Lt. Col. Michael Kearney, commander of the 51st Logistics Readiness Squadron, was removed from his post by Col. John Gonzales, 51st Fighter Wing commander, on Tuesday, according to a spokesperson from the 51st Fighter Wing.
“The decision was made due to loss of confidence in Kearney’s ability to effectively lead the squadron,” the spokesperson said in an email.
“Kearney has been reassigned to 7th Air Force, where he will work under the A4 logistics, engineering, and force protection directorate. Maj. Hans Hobbs, 51st LRS director of operations, has assumed temporary command of the squadron until the new commander arrives,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson did not provide additional details on whether an investigation precipitated Kearney’s removal.
According to the 51st LRS Facebook group, Kearney has been at the squadron at least since 2017.
The 51st LRS contributes to the wing’s operations through planning and direction for the distribution of equipment.
Last year, airmen from the squadron helped prepare for President Donald Trump’s visit to the region for the second U.S. and Democratic People’s Republic of Korea summit held in Hanoi, Vietnam, according to a release.
The airmen assisted in “securing diplomatic clearances for the cargo” in addition to coordinating plans between Osan, Kunsan, Suwon and Kadena Air Bases in the theater, the release said. (Source: Military.com)
27 Apr 20. Airbus Is Furloughing 6,000 Staff in Europe and ‘Bleeding Cash.’ Airbus has placed more than 6,000 workers in the United Kingdom and France on government-funded furlough programs just days after reportedly warning employees that it was burning cash at a rate that could threaten the company’s survival. The European plane maker said in a statement Monday that it has agreed with unions to furlough 3,200 production workers at its manufacturing site in Broughton, Wales. The UK government will pay 80% of their salaries, up to a maximum of £2,500 ($3,100) per month, under its job retention program. A similar step has been taken in France, where some 3,000 posts have been furloughed, Airbus said.
CEO Guillaume Faury reportedly told employees in an internal letter on Friday that Airbus was “bleeding cash at an unprecedented rate, which may threaten the very existence of our company.” (Source: defense-aerospace.com/CNN Business)
MILITARY AND GOVERNMENT
23 Apr 20. Retired Army general, Fox guest Tata reportedly tapped to be Pentagon policy head. The White House is reportedly set to select Anthony Tata, a retired Army general and Fox News commentator, as its choice to be undersecretary of defense for policy. The news, first reported by Bloomberg and confirmed by Politico, sets up a Trump administration loyalist and action novelist to take over the Pentagon’s top policy job, which is seen by experts as one of the most important positions in the building. Tata would replace John Rood, who was pushed out of office in February.
Tata retired from the Army in 2008 as a one-star general. Per his biography, he spent 22 months as deputy commanding general to the 10th Mountain Division and Combined Joint Task Force 76 in Afghanistan, as well as serving as deputy director for operations and training within the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, which was born from the Joint Improvised-Threat Defeat Organization.
Since leaving the military, Tata authored of a series of action novels, became a Fox New contributor and served as a state-level official in North Carolina. His LinkedIn profile lists him currently as chief growth officer at Air Data Solutions, a company specializing in aerial photography.
In his role as a Fox News pundit, Tata was an ardent supporter of President Donald Trump, including offering praise for Trump’s support of Navy SEAL Eddie Gallagher, who had been accused of war crimes.
Should Tata get a hearing with the Senate Armed Services Committee before the November election, he would likely face tough questions from Democrats, not just about his public stances but about his history.
However, a hearing is no sure thing, given the long timetables seen in the Trump administration for nominations as well as the short time period available for the Senate to get things done in 2020.
The News & Observer paper, based in North Carolina, published a 2015 piece about Tata, who was then serving as state transportation secretary, revealing that an Army investigation uncovered Tata committed adultery with “at least two” women while in uniform. Under military law, adultery is a criminal offense in cases where it brings discredit to the armed forces or undermines military order and discipline. The N&O report also raised questions about a legal document, submitted by Tata to the court, which appeared to fake. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Defense News)
28 Apr 20. Assistant US Navy Secretary for Manpower Filling in as Service’s Number Two. The US Navy’s head of manpower is filling in as the service’s civilian second-in-command, a Navy official told USNI News. As of Friday, Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Manpower and Reserve Affairs Gregory Slavonic is performing the duties of the Undersecretary of the Navy as well as his current role. Slavonic has served in his current role since June 11, 2018. He follows Thomas Modly in the role of Navy undersecretary. Modly had also been serving as the Acting Navy Secretary since November, following the removal of the last confirmed secretary, Richard V. Spencer.
Modly resigned earlier this month over remarks he made to the crew of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) on the removal of former commander Capt. Brett Crozier. Since Modly’s resignation, Army Undersecretary Jim McPherson has been serving as acting Secretary of the Navy. Modly’s Senate-confirmed job, though – undersecretary – was unfilled until Slavonic’s appointment.
U.S. ambassador to Norway, retired Navy Rear Adm. Kenneth Braithwaite, has been nominated by the White House to take the top civilian position in the Navy, but it’s unclear under the current national social distancing restrictions when the Senate will be able to hold a hearing and consider the nomination.
Prior to serving as the ASN for manpower, Slavonic was the chief of staff for Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) and before that worked in communications for broadcast and print. The Oklahoma native is also a retired rear admiral in the Navy Reserve. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/USNI)
25 Apr 20. President Donald Trump on Friday announced his intent to nominate Shon Manasco as the Air Force undersecretary. Manasco is currently the Air Force’s assistant secretary for manpower and reserve affairs, but he has been acting in the role of undersecretary since December, when former Air Force Under Secretary Matt Donovan stepped into the position of the Pentagon’s undersecretary of defense for personnel and Readiness. The White House statement announcing Trump’s intention to nominate Manasco did not mention when the president would officially tap him for the job. However, it could takes weeks or months for Manasco to move through the confirmation process, as the Senate is not set to get back into session until May 4 and has a backlog of nominations to move through. (Source: Defense News)
30 Apr 20. MG Christopher T. Donahue, commander, Special Operations Joint Task Force-Afghanistan, U.S. Forces-Afghanistan/Special Operations Component Command-Afghanistan, Resolute Support Mission, Operation Freedom’s Sentinel, Afghanistan, to commanding general, 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
30 Apr 20. MG Scott L. Efflandt, deputy commanding general, III Corps, Fort Hood, Texas, to commanding general, 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss, Fort Bliss, Texas.
30 Apr 20. MG Diana M. Holland, commanding general, South Atlantic Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Atlanta, Georgia, to commanding general, Mississippi Valley Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg, Mississippi.
30 Apr 20. MG David T. Isaacson, director of architecture, operations, networks and space, Office of the Chief Information Officer/G-6, U.S. Army, Washington, D.C., to chief of staff, U.S. Cyber Command, Fort Meade, Maryland.
30 Apr 20. MG Patrick E. Matlock, commanding general, 1st Armored Division and Fort Bliss, Fort Bliss, Texas, currently deployed as deputy chief of staff, operations, Resolute Support Mission, North Atlantic Treaty Organization; deputy commanding general (operations), U.S. Forces-Afghanistan; and commander, U.S. National Support Element Command-Afghanistan, to director of operations, U.N. Command/Combined Forces Command/U.S. Forces Korea, Republic of Korea.
30 Apr 20. MG Terrence J. McKenrick, commanding general, First Army Division East, Fort Knox, Kentucky, to deputy commanding general, V Corps, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
30 Apr 20. MG Jeffrey L. Milhorn, commanding general, North Atlantic Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Brooklyn, New York, to deputy commanding general for military and international operations, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Washington, D.C.
30 Apr 20. MG Andrew M. Rohling, deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Europe, Germany, to commanding general, U.S. Army Africa/Southern European Task Force, Italy.
30 Apr 20. MG Richard M. Toy, commanding general, Mississippi Valley Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Vicksburg, Mississippi, to chief of staff, United Nations Command, Republic of Korea.
30 Apr 20. BG (Promotable) Douglas A. Sims II, deputy director for regional operations and force management, J-35, Joint Staff, Washington, D.C., to commanding general, 1st Infantry Division and Fort Riley, Fort Riley, Kansas.
30 Apr 20. BG Shan Bagby, deputy commanding general (support), U.S. Army Medical Command/Chief of the Dental Corps, Joint Base San Antonio, Texas, to commanding general, Brooke Army Medical Center/Chief of the Dental Corps, Joint Base San Antonio, Texas.
30 Apr 20. BG Larry Q. Burris Jr., deputy commanding general (support), 3d Infantry Division, Fort Stewart, Georgia, to director, CJ3, Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve, Operation Inherent Resolve, Iraq.
30 Apr 20. BG Jack M. Davis, deputy commanding general, Regional Health Command-Pacific; senior market manager, Hawaii Enhanced Multi-Service Market; and chief of the Army Nurse Corps, Honolulu, Hawaii, to commanding general, Regional Health Command-Pacific; and chief of the Army Nurse Corps, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Washington.
30 Apr 20. BG Robert B. Davis, senior defense official and attaché, U.S. Defense Attaché Office, China, to chief of staff, U.S. Army Central, Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina.
30 Apr 20. BG David S. Doyle, deputy commanding general (Support), 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to commanding general, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk, Fort Polk, Louisiana.
30 Apr 20. BG Patrick D. Frank, commanding general, Joint Readiness Training Center and Fort Polk, Fort Polk, Louisiana, to chief of staff, U.S. Central Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.
30 Apr 20. BG Wendy L. Harter, commanding general, Brooke Army Medical Center; deputy commanding general, Regional Health Command-Central; and market manager, San Antonio Military Health System, to commanding general, Regional Health Command-Central, Joint Base San Antonio, Texas.
30 Apr 20. BG Mark H. Landes, commanding general, Security Force Assistance Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to commanding general, First Army Division East, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
30 Apr 20. BG Frederick M. O’Donnell, deputy commanding general (operations), 82d Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, currently deployed to Operation Phantom Aegis, Kuwait, to deputy director for operations, National Joint Operations Intelligence Center, Operations Team One, J-3, Joint Staff, Washington, D.C.
30 Apr 20. BG Andrew D. Preston, deputy chief of staff, G-3/5/7, U.S. Army Pacific, Fort Shafter, Hawaii, to chief of staff, U.S. Army Pacific, Fort Shafter, Hawaii.
30 Apr 20. BG Thomas J. Tickner, commanding general, Pacific Ocean Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Fort Shafter, Hawaii, to commanding general, North Atlantic Division, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Brooklyn, New York.
30 Apr 20. BG John W. Weidner to deputy director, plans, J-5, U.S. Strategic Command, Offutt Air Force Base, Nebraska. He most recently served as director, U.S. Army Nuclear and Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction Agency, Fort Belvoir, Virginia.
30 Apr 20. Col. (Promotable) David C. Foley, deputy commander (operations), 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Kentucky, to deputy director for operations, U.S. Central Command, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.
30 Apr 20. Col. (Promotable) Mark J. Hovatter, deputy director, strategy, plans and policy, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-3/5/7, U.S. Army, Washington, D.C., to deputy director, plans and strategic integration, J-5, U.S. Africa Command, Germany.
U.S. Army Reserve
30 Apr 20. MG David W. Ling, assistant deputy chief of staff, G-4 (Troop Program Unit), mobilization and training, Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, G-4, Washington, D.C., to commanding general (Troop Program Unit), 79th Theater Sustainment Command, Los Alamitos, California.
30 Apr 20. BG Christopher Z. Barra, chief of staff (Troop Program Unit), 311th Sustainment Brigade (Expeditionary), Los Angeles, California, to deputy commanding general – support (Troop Program Unit), 63rd Readiness Division, Mountain View, California.
30 Apr 20. BG Timothy E. Brennan, deputy commanding general – support (Troop Program Unit), 99th Readiness Division, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, to commander (Troop Program Unit), 353rd Civil Affairs Command, Staten Island, New York.
30 Apr 20. BG Robert S. Cooley Jr., commander (Troop Program Unit), 353rd Civil Affairs Command, Staten Island, New York, to chief of staff (Individual Mobilization Augmentee), U.S. Army Reserve Command, Fort Bragg, North Carolina.
30 Apr 20. BG Edward H. Merrigan Jr., commander (Troop Program Unit), Great Lakes Training Division, 84th Training Command, Fort Sheridan, Illinois, to deputy commanding general (Troop Program Unit), 84th Training Command, Fort Knox, Kentucky.
30 Apr 20. BG Jonathan C. Moyer, chief of staff (Troop Program Unit), 353rd Civil Affairs Command, Staten Island, New York, to deputy commanding general (Troop Program Unit), 335th Signal Command (Theater), East Point, Georgia
29 Apr 20. Airbus Helicopters has signed a charter to collaborate with Australian defence and aerospace service company Nova Systems. The deal will see the two businesses co-operate on equipment acquisition, support programs, personnel secondment and provision. The agreement will be a boon for the country’s coronavirus affected sector – parent company Nova Group is Australia based but has 600 employees in offices across New Zealand, south-east Asia, the UK and Europe.
Airbus Australia Pacific managing director Andrew Mathewson said, “Airbus’ charter with Nova Systems sets the framework for a long-term collaborative relationship that will deliver real results for Australia’s defence industry capabilities, local jobs and technology upskilling. Airbus welcomes the opportunity to work closely with innovative enterprises such as Nova Systems to ensure that we continue to deliver the best solutions to our customers.”
Airbus Helicopters’ current Australian programs also include MRH90 Taipan, a multi-role helicopter, and the ARH Tiger, a two-seat, attack helicopter. The 170 separate projects for the pair are worth $300m and involve partners such as Cablex, Ferra, Safran, Partech Systems and Thales. Nova Group chief executive Greg Hume said, “This partnership between Nova Systems ANZ and Airbus is a great example of a collaborative relationship providing sovereign services in support of the Australian government’s strategic and national interests.” (Source: Google/https://australianaviation.com.au/)
29 Apr 20. General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has partnered with Australia-based Conflux Technology on the development of a heat exchanger. The part is being developed using a metal Additive Manufacturing process for possible integration onto GA-ASI’s line of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS).
Conflux Technology is an Additive Manufacturing applications company based in Geelong, Victoria that specializes in thermal and fluid engineering. Conflux is providing design expertise in the optimization of Additive Manufacturing heat exchangers to increase the performance of RPA.
“GA-ASI and Conflux are developing novel and state-of-the-art thermal solutions for application to our existing and next generation RPAS. This will allow enhanced endurance and lower manufacturing cost, as well as more flexibility in our product design and integration,” said Linden Blue, GA-ASI CEO.
“Fundamental efficiency gains require heat transfer innovations. In Conflux we have a highly innovative engineering team that blends first principles thermo-fluid dynamics with design creativity and Additive Manufacturing process expertise,” said Michael Fuller, Conflux Technology CEO. “Conflux heat exchangers derive their performance from highly complex geometries enabled by Additive Manufacturing. Our scientists and engineers, alongside their GA-ASI counterparts, will now develop heat exchange applications to improve fundamental efficiencies for GA-ASI’s RPA systems.”
The Australian Government recently selected GA-ASI’s MQ-9B SkyGuardian® variant to provide the Armed RPAS for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) under Project Air 7003. Australia joins other top-tier military forces in choosing MQ-9 because of its proven, multi-role combat performance and ability to support ad-hoc communications networks and interoperability with Allies. MQ-9B follows the legacy of GA-ASI’s Predator® series of RPAS, the world’s most trusted and capable armed Medium-altitude, Long-endurance (MALE) RPA Systems. The entire fleet has accumulated more than six million flight hours to date.
29 Apr 20. DRA – Deutsche Regional Aircraft GmbH Q1 2020 Update. Appointment of Chief Technology Officer Martin Nüsseler. In a significant advancement of its technology team, DRA and sister company 328 Support Services GmbH have appointed Martin Nüsseler as the company’s Chief Technology Officer. Leveraging his significant aviation industry experience, Nüsseler is responsible for product strategy, technology road map and oversight of the engineering development team. Nüsseler joins after 17 years with Airbus – the last five of those spent leading the Airbus alternative propulsion systems and technologies unit. Nüsseler worked for Fairchild Dornier in the late 1990’s. The engineering development team’s primary focus is enhancing the D328® platform and delivering its future technology roadmap. The technical mission for the aircraft is based on a clear commitment for more sustainable aviation with significant positive impacts on short range regional transportation, versus today’s standard technologies.
27 Apr 20. Thales appoints Christophe Salomon as new Executive Vice President, Land & Air Systems. Christophe Salomon is appointed Executive Vice President, Thales, Land and Air Systems. He will be part of the Thales Executive Committee. He succeeds Alex Cresswell, who has been appointed Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Thales in the UK. Christophe, a graduate engineer of the Ecole Polytechnique and Sup’ Aero, joins Thales from EDF where he held the position of Chief Information Officer since 2017 and was in charge of driving the group’s Digital Transformation and Cyber Security Business. Prior, he spent 5 years in the Office of Jean-Yves Le Drian at the French Ministry of Defence and 13 years in various roles at the French Defence Procurement Agency DGA).
27 Apr 20. Gibbs & Cox, Inc., a global leader in naval architecture and marine engineering, announced today that Brian Hobbs, a cybersecurity and information technology executive, has joined the company as Chief Information Officer. In his new role, Hobbs will provide executive leadership and oversight of the full spectrum of corporate information technology infrastructure, security, end user services, people, and processes. Prior to joining Gibbs & Cox, Inc. Hobbs served as the Director of Client Data Protection at Accenture Federal Services and as a 24-year veteran of the United States Air Force, where he served in multiple information technology and cyber security leadership roles. He is a graduate of Virginia Tech, the Air Force Institute of Technology, and most recently the National Defense University’s Chief Information Security Officer program. (Source: PR Newswire)
23 Apr 20. Loft Orbital’s Newest Leadership Team Former Skybox and Apple Executives. Loft Orbital Solutions, a provider of Space Infrastructure as a Service, announces the appointments of two of the industry’s technology and satellite industry veterans, Paul Day and Marc Verstaen. This news follows on the heels of its $13M Series A round, to which these executives will further Loft Orbital’s goals of making access to space simple, fast, and reliable.
Paul Day, previously a hardware program manager at Apple Special Projects as well as an early employee and program manager at Skybox Imaging, has joined Loft Orbital as Chief Product Officer. He ran manufacturing and launch for Skybox’s first- and second-generation Skysats including setting up the manufacturing line with Skybox satellite manufacturing partner Space Systems Loral, until the company was acquired by Google for $500m in 2014. At Loft Paul will own the satellite mission execution side of the company, building the internal processes and third party relationships to support large-scale and rapid constellation deployments.
Day commented that having known the Loft team since the company’s early days, he’s been impressed with the speed by which the company has built significant traction with a wide range of commercial and government customers. He’s excited to come onboard and help Loft industrialize its mission execution processes to meet that demand.
Marc Verstaen joins Loft Orbital as its Vice President of Engineering. Marc is a seasoned technology leader with a proven track record of building world-class software teams. He was previously EVP of Product Development and Board member at Docker, and a Senior Engineering Manager at Apple. Marc has also co-founded multiple companies, including one that was acquired by Hyperion Solutions, and he is responsible for building and scaling Loft Orbital’s software teams and shipping software that supports the company’s satellite missions.
Verstaen said that he is lucky enough to have been part of two revolutions, with the iOS team at Apple making phones simple, and at Docker, making containers simple. He believes Loft will allow him to be part of a third revolution — making space simple.
Loft Orbital provides an end-to-end service for flying and operating customer payloads. The company has developed a suite of hardware and software products that enables it to rideshare any type of payload onboard standard, flight-proven, 100kg-class satellite buses, while providing customers with the ability to task their payload.
Antoine de Chassy, co-founder and co-CEO of Loft Orbital stated that Loft Orbital continues to bring on world class talent from both the technology and satellite realms, and they have built a culture that incorporates the best of both worlds.
Pierre-Damien Vaujour, co-founder and Co-CEO added that as their business grows in technical, programmatic, and organizational complexity, now is the perfect time to expand their leadership team. The addition of Marc and Paul to their team gives them the shoulders to scale their operations and address the massive demand they are experiencing from increasingly sophisticated customers.
Marc and Paul join Loft’s leadership team, joining a slate of executives including Pieter van Duijn (CTO); Lucas Brémond, Chief Architect; Andrew Berg (VP Business Development) and John Eterno (VP, Missions). (Source: Satnews)
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