November 23, 2022

DoD $1.4B Short on Next F-35 Contract

'Lightning Carrier' Deployed to Pacific

Morning, reports Military Times 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 Pentagon is $1.4 billion short for its next major F-35 contract with Lockheed, according to the annual “unfunded priority list” that DoD sends each year to Congress, reports Bloomberg. If more money isn’t found, the pending three-year contract, valued at as much as $30 billion, will yield fewer aircraft for the US’s costliest weapons program, which is now estimated at $412 billion.

Dominion Energy continues to mull divesting its 50% stake in the Cove Point LNG facility in Lusby, MD, reports TankTerminals.com. The Cove Point LNG project in Calvert County, is operated by Berkshire Hathaway’s BHE GT&S, which has a 25% stake. Dominion Energy has a 50% stake and Brookfield Asset Management owns the remaining 25%. Dominion has been seeking interest from infrastructure funds and other potential suitors, according to Bloomberg News, citing undisclosed sources.

US intelligence suggests Russia may have factored the US midterms into the announcement of its Kherson retreat, reports CNN. Russian officials brought up the midterms in talks about when to announce their retreat from the strategic city, and may have delayed the announcement to avoid giving the Biden administration and Democrats in Congress material ahead of the midterms.

An official Army app with Russian code might have harvested user data, reports Army Times. The Army confirmed the app used code from a tech company with Russian roots, after a Reuters investigation spotlighted the situation. At least 1,000 people downloaded the app, which delivered updates for troops at the National Training Center on Fort Irwin, CA, a critical waypoint for deploying units to test their battlefield prowess before heading overseas.

FBI Director Christopher Wray warns TikTok’s continuing operations in the US could pose a threat to national security, reports The New York Post. “We do have national security concerns,” Wray said during testimony to Congress on Tuesday. “They include the possibility that the Chinese government could use it to control data collection on millions of users, or control the recommendation algorithm which could be used for influence operations if they so choose, or to control software on millions of devices.”

An oil tanker associated with an Israeli billionaire was hit by armed drone off the coast of Oman, reports Al Jazeera. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack, the details of which are unclear, but suspicion has fallen on Iran. Reports indicate there were no injuries, spills, or incapacitating damage to the ship.

NASA’s Artemis 1 moon mission heads for lunar orbit after crucial engine burn, reports Space.com. Artemis 1 launched on Nov. 16, sending an uncrewed Orion capsule aloft atop the agency’s huge Space Launch System rocket. The first stage of the rocket got the capsule to Earth orbit, then the rocket’s upper stage pushed the  Orion free of Earth’s gravity, and now Artemis 1 is headed to the moon.

 

 

Elegance Bratton is an expert in fiction. Throughout his career in the US Marine Corps, he learned how to pretend to be things he wasn’t. It was how he survived as a Black gay man during the era of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. Military Times reports compellingly on Bratton’s post-military career in filmmaking and his directorial debut, “The Inspection,” a fictionalized retelling of his own experience as a young, gay Black man who, shunned by his mother, homeless, decides to join the Marine Corps. And that made all the difference.

Can the Air Force train new pilots without planes? Air Force Times reports a new simulator program is the latest attempt to modernize pilot training and an opportunity to retire its 30-year-old fleet of T-1A Jayhawk trainer jets. Others warn it’s more complicated than trading an airworthy cockpit for a replica. “There’s a lot of value to a simulator, but there’s something fundamentally different when you’re up in the thin air,” said Heather Penney, a retired Air National Guard fighter pilot who now researches defense policy at the Mitchell Institute for Aerospace Studies. “There’s no do-overs, there’s no resets.”

The former commanding and executive officers of the amphibious assault ship Bonhomme Richard were each fined $5,000 as punishment for failing to prepare the ship and its crew to fight the July 2020 fire that destroyed the vessel, Military.com reports on records obtained by the Union-Tribune. The officers — CAPT Gregory Thoroman, the former ship’s captain, and CAPT David Ray, the executive officer — were among 22 sailors who received administrative action from the service after the fire. The Navy charged a junior sailor with setting the fire, but he was acquitted of the charge at a military court-martial in September. He is still on active duty in San Diego, according to a 3rd Fleet spokesperson.

White House requests $38 billion more in Ukraine aid, reports Defense News. That would bring the total amount Congress has appropriated for Ukraine to more than $100 billion in less than a year. The Office of Management and Budget asked Congress to include the $38 billion Ukraine supplemental funding request – which includes $21.7 billion in security assistance

Teachers experienced more pandemic anxiety than health care workers, reports UPI Health. Educational Researcher found US teachers were 40% more likely to report anxiety symptoms than healthcare workers. The same elementary, middle, and high school teachers were 20% more likely to report stress compared to office workers and 30% more likely to report anxiety than workers in other occupations, including military, farming, and legal professions.

Marines’ elite Silent Drill Platoon gets its first female commander, reports Marine Corps Times. CAPT Kelsey M. Hastings will assume leadership of the 24 Marines in the ceremonial platoon, which performs precision drills without verbal cadence or commands.

Navy CAPT John William Kurtz, censured over fatal a Marine AAV accident, has been recommended to command an aircraft carrier, reports Task & Purpose. Kurtz received a letter of censure from the NAVSEC for his role in the July 30, 2020, training accident in which eight Marines and one sailor died when their amphibious assault vehicle sank. Kurtz’s name appears on the Navy’s fiscal 2024 list of officers who are recommended to command an aircraft carrier. If selected, Kurtz would not be promoted, as commanding officers for aircraft carriers hold the rank of captain.

Initial findings suggest the missile that killed 2 people in Poland was fired by Ukrainian forces to intercept a Russian strike, reports Business Insider.

Only half the parts are waiting when US attack submarines come in for repairs, reports Military Times. There’s a plan, but not the money to fix the problem, according to the Navy’s attack-sub PEO, RADM Jonathan Rucker. Currently, just 40% to 50% of the required parts and material are on hand when a sub arrives in the yard, Rucker said.

Contracts:

Lockheed Martin, Baltimore, Maryland, was awarded a $44,992,225 firm-fixed-price order to the previously awarded contract N00024-18-C-2301 to provide procurement and engineering efforts in support of small combatant propulsion system sparing. Work will be performed in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, and is expected to be completed by October 2025. The contract also contains options, which if exercised would increase cumulative contract value to $168,876,672 and be complete by October 2028. Foreign Military Sales funding in the amount of $44,992,225 will be obligated at the time of award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion, and Repair, Bath, Maine, is the contracting activity. Awarded on September 26, 2022.

Airbus U.S. Space & Defense Inc., Arlington, Virginia, was awarded a $42,588,842 modification (P00027) to contract W58RGZ-22-C-0022 to increase flying hours. Work will be performed in Grand Prairie, Texas, with an estimated completion date of Dec. 31, 2022. Fiscal 2023 operation and maintenance, Army funds in the amount of $42,588,842 were obligated at the time of the award. US Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity.

BAE Systems Land & Armaments LP, Sterling Heights, Michigan, is awarded a $153,735,465 firm-fixed-price modification to previously awarded contract M67854-16-0006 for Amphibious Combat Vehicles (ACVs). The total cumulative face value of the contract is $2,074,435,899. This contract modification provides for the exercise of options for the procurement of 30 full rate production ACVs and associated production, and fielding and support costs. Work will be performed in York, Pennsylvania (60%); Aiken, South Carolina (15%); San Jose, California (15%); Sterling Heights, Michigan (5%); and Stafford, Virginia (5%), with an expected completion date of December 2024. Fiscal 2023 procurement (Marine Corps) funds in the amount of $153,735,465 will be obligated at the time of award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. Marine Corps Systems Command, Quantico, Virginia, is the contracting activity (M67854-16-C-0006).

General Atomics – Aeronautical Systems Inc., Poway, California, is awarded a $46,939,334 firm-fixed-price modification (P00002) to an order (N0001922F2395) against a previously issued basic ordering agreement (N0001922G0006). This modification exercises an option to provide spares necessary for the successful operational capability of the Marine Air Ground Task Force Unmanned Aircraft System Expeditionary Medium Altitude Long Endurance MQ-9A Block 5 Reaper air vehicles, ground control stations, and ancillary equipment. Work will be performed in Poway, California (52%); San Diego, California (15%); Walpole, Massachusetts (5.1%); Carlsbad, California (5%); St. Charles, Missouri (2.7%); El Cajon, California (2.5%); Oxnard, California (1.5%); Farmingdale, New York (1.3%); Herndon, Virginia (1.3%); Aurora, Ohio (1.05%); Ontario, California (1%); Nevada City, California (1%); Tulare, California (1%); Huntsville, Arkansas (1%); Miami, Florida (1%); Newberry, South Carolina (1%); various locations within the continental U.S. (5.8%); and Toronto, Canada (.75%), and is expected to be completed in February 2026. Fiscal 2023 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $46,939,334 will be obligated at the time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

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