April 17, 2021

Art & Lifestyle:

Blue Angels & Thunderbirds Unveil ‘Super Delta’

US Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Cody Hendrix

Morning Coffee is a robust blend of links to news around the internet concerning the Naval Air Station Patuxent River Morning Coffee logoeconomic community. The opinions expressed here do not reflect opinions of the Leader’s owners or staff.

The Blue Angels and Thunderbirds unveiled their “Super Delta” mega formation this week during cross-training for their demonstration flight teams at Naval Air Facility El Centro in California, reports The Drive. The F-16 Fighting Falcon and F/A-18 Super Hornet flight formation grew out of a series of joint training opportunities held in 2020 and 2021.

Two specially instrumented F-35Bs from Air Test and Evaluation Squadron 23 (VX-23) at NAS Pax River, landed aboard Italian aircraft carrier ITS Cavour, off the US East Coast this week, reports Business Insider, in compatibility sea trials.

Rising sea levels increasingly threaten the US Naval Academy, USNA Superintendent VADM Sean Buck told the House Appropriations Committee’s Defense subcommittee, reports Seapower Magazine. The campus experienced 41 events of high-tide flooding in the entire decade of the 1990, he said. “Now, we’re experiencing 41 instances of high-tide flooding per year. … it is projected by 2050 that we will see this high-tide flooding negative effect every single day of the year.”

The Marine Corps severely limits the time its new heavy-lift helicopter can be exposed to dust, reports The Drive, still without any resolution to the problem that 21 minutes of cumulative exposure to dust degrades engine performance. Ongoing difficulties  with the CH-53K King Stallion have raised the per-helicopter price to $125 million and pushed projected operational capability from 2015 to 2024.

The remarkably intact “Little Foot” fossil out of South Africa and adaptive technology in the UK are revealing clues to the origin of modern humans, BBC reports on the recently published investigative results in eLife.

Tehran says the “time is not ripe” to negotiate with the US, reports Al-Monitor. Iranian officials say Washington’s proposed inclusion in negotiations over reviving the Iran nuclear deal cannot work unless the United States lifts sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Reports of possible N Korea nuclear reprocessing are concerning US officials, reports Aljazeera. RADM Michael Studeman, head of intelligence for the US Indo-Pacific command, says the North Korean activity highlighted by the International Atomic Energy Agency could be intended to get the attention of the Biden administration and as a bargaining chip to press for sanctions relief.

Coordinating with the European Union, the US imposed sanctions on seven senior Russian government officials over the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny, reports Reuters. Punitive measures were also levied against 13 companies and a government research institute associated with Russia’s biological and chemical agent production.

Marine Corps Commandant General David Berger, for the first time, downgraded the Russia threat and has elevated China to the US’s top threat, reports Breaking Defense. This puts Russia alongside Iran, North Korea, and extremist groups as areas that will “continue to pose threats.”

Sen. Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) wants intelligence declassified regarding claims of Kremlin-offered bounties to Taliban forces for targeting US troops in Afghanistan, reports The Hill. “While any intelligence assessment on this matter is understandably sensitive, the American public, and Gold Star Families in particular, have a pressing need to know if there is any truth to these claims,” she wrote to National Intelligence Director Avril Haines.

The panel to scrub Confederates names from US bases was sworn-in this week, reports The Hill. Officially called the “Commission on the Naming of Items of the Department of Defense that Commemorates the Confederate States of America or Any Person Who Served Voluntarily with the Confederate States of America,” the panel was created by last year’s defense policy bill.

 

 

USS Gabrielle Giffords recently completed a 17-month deployment to the Pacific, adding lesson learned for operating and maintaining the Littoral Combat Ship forward, CMDR Rion Martin told USNI News. Rion led one of the two teams that rotated on and off the ship during crew swaps throughout the lengthy deployment.

Hundreds of active-duty and National Guard troops are strapped in for what could be a long ride at Los Angeles’s mass COVID-19 vaccination center, giving up to 6,000 doses a day, reports Military Times. “They told me I could be here until September, so we’ll see,” said Senior Airman Samantha Campos, an unmanned aerial vehicle crew chief, who staffs a drive-up vaccine lane.

A blast struck a coronavirus testing center north of Amsterdam before sunrise on Wednesday, shattering windows but causing no injuries in what police called an intentional attack, reports Reuters.

 Julia Parsons, a World War II code breaker who helped hunt down Nazi U-boats turned 100 this week and was celebrated by a  parade past her house in Pittsburgh, reports Military.com. Parson served in the Navy WAVES and some of her story is told here.

Sleep deprivation hurts military readiness despite an anti-sleep culture, reports Stars and Stripes. A recent DoD report says sleep deprivation “may be the most important biological factor that determines service member health and combat readiness.” The report was compiled after several studies indicated 64% of service members lack enough sleep compared to 28-37% of civilians.

Military Times reports the US wasted billions of dollars in war-torn Afghanistan on buildings and vehicles that were either abandoned or destroyed, according to the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction. The agency reviewed $7.8 billion spent since 2008, just $1.2 billion was used as intended. Only $343.2 million worth of buildings and vehicles “were maintained in good condition.”

Canadian firm CAE intends to purchase the military training arm of L3Harris Technologies, a $1.05 billion move that will double the company’s American defense business, reports Defense News.

The Chinese military unveiled a micro drone at Abu Dhabi weapons show, reports South China Morning Post, the tiny Fengniao is just 17cm long (6.7 inches) and weighs 35 grams (1.2 ounces). The developer says that it may be used for public security surveillance and inspecting dangerous chemical warehouses and pipelines. It could rival the Black Hornet Nano, a 10cm-long, 18-gram drone that has been used by the US military since 2012.

In advance of a Senate hearing on Capital Hill, military leaders maintain there was no response delay on their end to the Capitol riot, reports CNN. The Pentagon maintains it took time to clarify and organize a response to what they say was a vague yet urgent request for help from city officials and Capitol Police. There is also a sense of frustration and annoyance among some former officials that Capitol Police and others in Washington, DC, expected Guardsmen to show up instantaneously.

Contracts:

Smartronix LLC, Hollywood, Maryland, has been awarded a contract modification (P00004) on contract HTC711-20-F-D076 in the amount of $7,822,731 to provide continued Amazon Web Service cloud service support to the U.S. Transportation Command. Work will be performed primarily on-site at Scott Air Force Base, Illinois. The option period of performance is from March 30, 2021, to March 29, 2022. This modification brings the total cumulative face value of the contract to $13,037,885 from $5,215,154. The U.S. Transportation Command, Directorate of Acquisition, Scott AFB, Illinois, is the contracting activity. (Awarded March 2, 2021)

Booz Allen Hamilton Inc., McLean, Virginia (N66001-21-D-0070); Exceptional Employees for Exceptional Results Corp., San Diego, California (N66001-21-D-0071); G2 Software Systems Inc., San Diego, California (N66001-21-D-0072); KAB Laboratories Inc., San Diego, California (N66001-21-D-0073); Kratos Defense & Rocket Support Services Inc., San Diego, California (N66001-21-D-0074); M.C. Dean Inc., Tysons, Virginia (N66001-21-D-0075); Parsons Government Services Inc., Pasadena, California (N66001-21-D-0076); Science Applications International Corp., Reston, Virginia (N66001-21-D-0077); Sentar Inc., Huntsville, Alabama (N66001-21-D-0078); Systems Technology Forum Ltd., Fredericksburg, Virginia (N66001-21-D-0079); and Transtecs Corp., Arlington, Virginia (N66001-21-D-0080), are awarded a $31,319,906 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, multiple-award contract with cost-plus-fixed-fee and cost-with-no-fee pricing by the Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific. Support includes management engineering, technical assistance, integrated logistics and security for wideband, narrowband and protected communications on afloat, ashore, airborne, submerged and space-based platforms. This two-year contract includes two two-year option periods which, if exercised, would bring the overall potential value of this contract to an estimated $99,788,587. Work will be performed in San Diego (80%); and outside the continental U.S. (20%). The period of performance of the base award is from March 3, 2021, through March 2, 2023. If all options are exercised, the period of performance would extend through March 2, 2027. No funds will be obligated at the time of award. Fiscal 2021 funds will be obligated as task orders are issued using research, development, test and evaluation (Navy); operation and maintenance (Navy); and other procurement (Navy). This contract was competitively procured via request for proposal N66001-20-R-3426, published on the beta.SAM.gov website. Eleven offers were received and eleven were selected for award. Naval Information Warfare Center, Pacific, San Diego, California, is the contracting activity.

Leidos Inc., Reston, Virginia, was awarded a non-competitive modification action (P00040) under contract HC1028-17-C-0001. This action establishes a new cost-plus-fixed-fee contract line item number (CLIN) 1002 on the existing contract to deliver the modernization of the Advanced Field Artillery Tactical Data Systems with a revised code convergence strategy. The face value of this action is $58,137,204, and is funded by fiscal 2021 and 2022 research, development, test and evaluation funding. The total cumulative face value of this contract is $195,112,140. The performance will remain at the contractor’s site. The period of performance of CLIN 1002 will be a total of 39 months, from March 1, 2021, through May 31, 2024. The Defense Information Technology, Contracting Organization, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, is the contracting activity. (Awarded Feb. 26, 2021)

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