May 24, 2024

Morning Coffee: X-47B to Fly with F/A-18 This Summer

X-47B UCAS-D on USS Truman

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

The X-47B, the Navy’s full-size UAV, returns to sea this summer to complete testing of takeoffs and landings from a moving carrier, this time with piloted F/A-18s in the pattern. The Navy’s programmed UAV flies autonomously and is larger than an F/A-18. Its latest in a series of successful trials was an April night flight over Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Maryland, reports The Navy Times.

The House Appropriations Committee’s $570 billion defense budget contains more weapon systems and technology than the Pentagon requested and if adopted would keep the US spending as much on military technology as the rest of the world combined, reports Defense News. But Wall Street investors aren’t buying it, even those bullish on the defense industry question DoD’s plans to spend as much on research, development and weapon procurement as its forecasts claim, reports the National Defense Industrial Association. “If the Pentagon’s numbers are wrong,” says an industry analyst, it becomes “unclear whether 2014 or 2015 is the bottom” of the industry’s revenue slump. Defense contractors stick with their projections, similar to the Pentagon’s, of no more than single-digit drops in revenues. But investors remain wary.

The internet is not ephemeral, it is very real, reports Wired, and Timo Arnall, a designer and artist from London has filmed it. Mr. Arnall’s installation project Internet Machine is for the Big Bang Data exhibit that opened last month in Barcelona. Mr. Arnall’s three-screen film shows a series of massive servers, wires and equipment tucked away in high-security buildings, in this case Telefónica, a 65,700 square meter data center in Alcalá, Spain. Describing the importance and relevance of the exhibit, the Big Bang Data website says “The vast industrial infrastructure that spreads throughout the globe and stores memories, words, images and actions already represents two percent of the world’s electricity use, equivalent to the energy consumption of a country like Norway.”

Intuition may be real and a four-year, $3.85 million joint effort among military, academia and business are setting out to find out what that “spidey sense” is and if it can be taught, reports The Navy Times.

The Washington Post tells the story of a Navy contractor succeeded, diversified, grew big, and made it to the “purgatory” zone of defense contracting, still afloat, with some well learned lessons, and a few pieces of a advice.

Letitia Long is retiring after a 35-year civilian career launched as an engineer with the Navy and for the last four years leading the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, for which she has won wide accolades, as has the man who has been tapped to replace her,  Robert Cardillo, the current Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Intelligence Integration, reports Breaking Defense.

NAS: Patuxent River, MD invites the public to the Patuxent River Naval Air Museum, 11:30 am, June 4 to  commemorate the 72nd anniversary of the Battle of Midway, one of the Navy’s largest victories in history. Participants will hear from Midway vets assigned to the naval air station and how their bravery helped change the course of the war in the Pacific. The event is free.

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