June 22, 2024

DoD Has $1B Catalyst for Bio-Industry

Photo by RickLawless – WikiMedia.org.

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 Pentagon plans to invest more than $1 billion over the next five years to expand the US bioindustrial manufacturing sector, reports ExecGov.com. Deputy DEF SEC Kathleen Hicks emphasized biomanufacturing’s potential to advance national security and explained DoD’s goal is to “be a key catalyst for a domestic bioindustrial manufacturing base, and more quickly turn basic and applied research into operational prototypes and reliable, reproducible products that can be made at scale.”

The Air Force has reversed course on a set of pay cuts that had been set to take effect Oct. 1 for some of the toughest jobs, reports Military.com. Conceived as a cost-cutting measure, Air Force SEC Frank Kendall cited economic pressures on airmen for the reversal. Kendall also briefly mentioned recruiting challenges in a speech on Monday, saying the Air Force will meet its end-of-year goals but will be in a tough position over the next couple of years.

China criticized President Joe Biden’s statement on a Sunday broadcast of “60 Minutes” that American forces would defend Taiwan if Beijing tries to invade, describing it as violating US commitments not to support formal independence for Taiwan, a step Beijing has said would lead to war. Military.com reports China’s spokeswoman Mao Ning said, “China strongly deplores and rejects it and has made solemn complaints with the US side.”

Ukraine has shot down 55 Russian warplanes using older Russian-made air defenses, reports Politico. Speaking at the Air Force Association’s Air, Space Cyber conference on Monday, GEN James Hecker, commander of Air Forces in Europe and Africa, said the huge losses are a major reason Russian fighter planes and bombers have not played much of a role in the conflict.

It took only a “couple of months” for defense contractors to equip the Ukrainian air force’s Soviet-era MiG-29 and Su-27 fighters with American-made AGM-88 High Speed Radiation Missiles, Hecker also said. “It was quite the effort. We have some realy smart contractors that were able to make this happen.” He declined to reveal which contractor, reports Breaking Defense. “If you were that contractor, would you want Russia to know?”

Ryan Sawyer Mays, 21, accused of igniting the USS Bonhomme Richard, put his fate in the hands of a lone Navy judge, waiving his right to a jury on Monday, reports Military Times. CAPT Derek Butler will rule at the end of the court martial  at Naval Base San Diego  whether Mays ignited the USS Bonhomme Richard in 2020 or, as the defense suggests, if there was even arson at all.



In a military base in Poland, US troops help Ukrainians fix and maintain 155mm howitzers, Javelin launchers, HIMARS, and other weapons, via encrypted digital chats, reports Defense One. They’re sending replacement parts, and consulting on parts the Ukrainians make themselves. With the help of some Ukrainian linguists, the US maintenance specialists communicate in 14 chatrooms, one for each weapon and system the Ukrainians need help with. The Ukrainians use Starlink satellite communication terminals to share video clips as needed. It’s vital work. The airbase could be among the first targets if Russia expands the war beyond Ukraine.

Congress should reauthorize the Federal Communications Commission’s authority to conduct spectrum auctions, as well as consider a series of initiatives to ensure the US remains a global wireless leader, say lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, according to FCW.

Air New Zealand connects Auckland and New York for the first time ever, reports CNN. Unfortunately, weather conditions required additional fuel upon the return trip, bumping the luggage of 40 passengers, reports Business Insider. The first flight, after 16 hours in the sky, arrived at JFK airport on September 17. The opposite route from JFK to Auckland takes about 17.5 hours.

The military needs to provide more timely, informative guidance to non-citizen troops about the naturalization process. Military Times reports those findings from a recent government watchdog report out of the Government Accountability Office.

VA family caregiver benefits will extend through 2025 for ‘legacy’ veterans, reports Military.com. The VA continues to review the program, including eligibility criteria that were changed in 2020 as the department prepared to expand the program to veterans from all eras — a requirement of the 2018 Mission Act. It has grown to roughly 33,000 participants who now receive $1,750- $3,000 per month, depending on geographic location and the extent of care required.

The Air Force says its KC-46 can refuel planes around the world — except for its A-10 Warthog, reports Defense News. The stiffness of KC-46 refueling boom still won’t allow it to refuel the A-10 Warthog. The Air Force in 2019 awarded Boeing a contract worth up to $55.5 million to redesign the tanker’s boom; that effort is still in the works.

Green Village base, housing US troops in northeastern Syria, was struck by a rocket attack Sept. 18, reports Military Times. No US or coalition troops were hurt. The attack failed to strike any US or allied equipment, according to US Central Command.

In 2019 Military Times rated @PatDonahoeArmy as No. 1 military member to follow on Twitter, saying, “if leaders learn from example, you can’t go wrong by following his.” Now, MAJ GEN Patrick Donahoe’s retirement is on hold while the service completes an investigation into alleged misconduct focused on his social media use, reports Military Times. The former commanding general of the Army’s Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, GA, intended to retire after handing over command of the installation to MAJ GEN Curtis Buzzard in July.

VADM Thomas Ishee took over as commanding officer of U.S. 6th Fleet and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO Sept. 15, relieving VADM Gene Black III, reports Navy Times. Ishee previously served as the director of global operations for US Strategic Command, leads 6th Fleet as the Navy continues to ramp up its presence in the European theater following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February.


Chae & Nam Universe Inc., National City, California (N55236-22-D-0008); Delphinus Engineering, Eddystone, Pennsylvania (N55236-22-D-0009); Epsilon Systems Solutions Inc., San Diego, California (N55236-22-D-0010); and Q.E.D Systems Inc., Virginia Beach, Virginia (N55236-22-D-0011), are awarded a $20,324,743 firm-fixed-price, multiple award, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with a five-year ordering period to provide support to submarines homeported or docked in San Diego, California. The contract will provide non-nuclear and non-Submarine Safety Program submarine support for planned maintenance availabilities and unplanned emergent work. These four companies will have an opportunity to compete for individual delivery orders. The contract ordering period begins Sept. 29, 2022, and ends on Sept. 28, 2027. Fiscal 2022 operations and maintenance (Navy) funds in the amount of $40,000 ($10,000 for minimum guarantee per contract) will be obligated under each contract’s initial delivery order and expires at the end of the current fiscal year. These contracts were competitively procured via the System for Award Management website, with five offers were received. The Southwest Regional Maintenance Center, San Diego, California, is the contracting activity (N55236-22-D-(0008-0011).

UVSheltron Inc., Pontiac, Michigan, was awarded an $8,976,780 firm-fixed-price contract for the procurement and installation delivery of electric vehicle charging facilities. Bids were solicited via the internet with nine received. Work will be performed in Anniston, Alabama; Toole, Utah; New Boston, Texas; Richmond, Kentucky; McAlester, Oklahoma; Middletown, Iowa; White Hall, Arkansas; Herlong, California; Coolbaugh Township, Pennsylvania; Chambersburg, Pennsylvania; Pueblo, Colorado; Concord, California; Hawthorne, Nevada; Watervliet, New York; Corpus Christi, Texas; Radford, Virginia; Crane, Indiana; Kingsport, Tennessee; Independence, Missouri; Scranton, Pennsylvania; and Southport North, Carolina, with an estimated completion date of Dec. 30, 2022. Fiscal 2022 operation and maintenance, Army funds in the amount of $8,976,780 were obligated at the time of the award. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, Alabama, is the contracting activity (W912DY-22-C-0036).


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