December 8, 2023

DoD Paring Down F-35’s Technical Issues


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The Defense Department is slowly whittling down the number of F-35 technical problems, reports Defense News, with the fighter jet program’s most serious issues decreasing from 13 to seven during the past year. Here are some of the key problems identified by the Pentagon in the past, reports Business Insider.

The Pentagon will have to live with limits on the F-35’s supersonic flights, reports Defense News. An issue that risks damage to the jet’s tail section if the aircraft needs to maintain supersonic speeds is not worth fixing and will instead be addressed by changing the operating parameters.

The US Navy recommended Friday that Capt. Brett Crozier be reinstated as commander of the USS Theodore Roosevelt. The Hill reports that Pentagon officials have reached an impasse about whether to give him his job back.

The US Army gave two teams $100,000 each to help them develop emergency ventilators for COVID-19 patients, reports Breaking Defense. AirMid Critical Care Products and the multi-company Emergency Ventilator Response Initiative were the first two award recipients in the Army’s Ventilator Challenge.

The Arlington County, VA, board unanimously approved two agreements with the federal government to move forward with the expansion of Arlington National Cemetery, reports WTOP News.

The Navy has accepted delivery of the next-generation stealth destroyer Zumwalt more than three years after its commissioning, reports

Task & Purpose has reviewed budget documents for the Navy’s electromagnetic railgun and reports the supergun appears stuck in a research and development black hole. The railgun is touted as the weapon of the future — a super-powered cannon capable of liquefying targets at up to 100 nautical miles away with a solid metal slug that travels at speeds up to 4,500 mph.



The USNS Comfort hospital ship sent to relieve stress on New York City hospitals at the height the pandemic is discharging or transferring its last patients as it reaches the end of its mission, reports The Associated Press. It will be heading back to its homeport in Norfolk, VA.

The USNS Mercy is currently docked at the Port of Los Angeles taking patients who need care for illnesses other than COVID-19 so area hospital have the room to focus on the pandemic, reports The Orange County Register. Despite precautions, the ship’s first sailor with a confirmed case of COVID-19 was reported earlier this month. Since then, eight others from the medical team have tested positive.

As beds go unfilled, many states are scaling back US Army Corps of Engineers makeshift hospitals, reports The Washington Post. The corps said it was building at least 32 facilities.

The Maryland unemployment office’s website is back online, but working slowly, reports WTOP News. The site was overwhelmed on Friday when it first went online. It was taken down Sunday due to technical issues. The site can be found here.

The Pentagon has created a “war room” to ramp up production of hypersonic weapons from a handful of prototypes over the last decade to “hundreds of weapons” in the near future, reports Breaking Defense.

West Point intends to test all cadets returning to graduate in June for the novel coronavirus using two new GeneXpert devices procured after the academy established a planning group in mid-March to determine how the process would work, reports Army Times. Last week, President Donald Trump said he would deliver the commencement address. That was news to everyone, including officials at West Point, reports The New York Times. “He’s the commander in chief, that’s his call,” said Sue Fulton, a West Point grad and former chairwoman of the academy’s Board of Visitors.

The IRS will have 10,000 employees return to their offices, reports Federal News Network. The agency will bring back certain employees to answer phones, process mail, and conduct other “mission-critical work” they can’t complete while teleworking. “Although the IRS is seeking to procure personal protective equipment such as masks and gloves, each IRS facility may not be able to initially procure the PPE for all employees immediately,” an email states. “Employees are therefore required to bring personal face coverings for their nose and mouth area when they come to work.”

Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 3rd Class Collin Travis rides in an MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter assigned to the Wildcards of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 23 during a vertical replenishment April 20, 2020. HSC-23 is conducting routine operations in the eastern Pacific Ocean. (US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jacob D. Bergh/Released)


Boeing Aerospace Operations Inc., St. Louis, Missouri, has been awarded an $8,733,007 firm-fixed-price task order FA8134-20-F-5701 against basic contract FA8106-16-D-0004 for crew rest modification efforts on the Air Force C-32 fleet. Work will be performed at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland, and is expected to be completed by Feb. 28, 2022. Fiscal 2019 and 2020 aircraft procurement funds in the amount of $8,733,007 will be obligated at the time of award. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, is the contracting activity.

Environmental Chemical Corp., Burlingame, California, is awarded a $58,398,023 modification under firm-fixed-price task order (N62470-19-F-9101) to allot the second increment, which provides for the construction of the master time clocks and operations facility at the Naval Observatory. Work will be performed in Washington, District of Columbia, and provides for the construction of new master time clocks and an operations facility. Work will include construction of Building 51, demolition of Building 82, upgrade of Building 83 electrical components, renovation of Building 78, rehabilitation of existing Building 6 and 7 foundations, walls and piers, Pepco 13.2kV (electric power company name and service voltage) work inside and outside of the fence line at the Naval Observatory fence line to include Verizon fiber work. Work is expected to be complete by September 2024. The total contract amount after allotting these funds will be $90,696,992. Fiscal 2020 military construction, (Navy) contract funds in the amount of $58,393,023 are obligated on this award and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Washington, Washington, District of Columbia, is the contracting activity (N62470-18-D-8025).

Huntington Ingalls Inc., Pascagoula, Mississippi, is awarded a $10,100,000 cost-plus-award-fee delivery order against previously awarded basic ordering agreement N00024-16-G-2303 to provide program management, advanced planning, engineering, design, material procurement/kitting, liaison, scheduling, participation in planning conferences and design reviews in support of the post shakedown availability for DDG-119 (guided missile destroyers). Work will be performed in Pascagoula, Mississippi (75%); and Norfolk, Virginia (25%), and is expected to be complete by August 2021. Fiscal 2020 shipbuilding and conversion (Navy) funding in the amount of $10,100,000 will be obligated at time of delivery order and will not expire at the end of the current fiscal year. This contract was not competitively procured in accordance with 10 US Code 2304(c)(1), with only one responsible source and no other supplies or services will satisfy agency requirements. The Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion and Repair Gulf Coast, Pascagoula, Mississippi, is the contracting activity. (Awarded April 24, 2020)

AT&T Corp., Columbia, Maryland, was awarded a firm-fixed-price contract modification to exercise Option Year Four for the Northstar Long-Haul Telecommunications Network and associated transmission circuits for an ultra-high frequency/line of sight communications system network. The face value of this action is $12,312,149, funded by fiscal 2020 operations and maintenance funds. The total cumulative face value of the contract is $68,464,912. The place of performance will be at various sites geographically dispersed across the continental US. The period of performance for this action is May 1, 2020, to April 30, 2021. The Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, is the contracting activity (HC1013-16-C-0001, P00014).

Sierra Nevada Corp., Sparks, Nevada, has been awarded an $8,161,843 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for an Intent-Defined Adaptive Software (IDAS) Prototype. This contract provides for a software engineering performance baseline for measuring IDAS improvement over the current software by attempting challenges with existing tools and techniques and measuring the learning curve required for traditional developers to adopt emerging IDAS capabilities. Work will be performed in Herndon, Virginia, and is expected to be completed by April 27, 2024. This award is the result of a competitive acquisition and 20 offers were received. Fiscal 2019 research, development, test and evaluation funds in the amount of $737,596 are being obligated at time of award. Air Force Research Laboratory, Rome, New York, is the contracting activity (FA8750-20-C-0518).

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