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New ‘Marine One’ Readied at Pax

VH-92A helicopter on the tarmac at NAS Patuxent River. (US Navy photo)

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 first new “Marine One” presidential helicopter in more than 40 years is ready, reports Vertical Mag. US President Joe Biden is just months away from taking his first ride in the VH-92 helicopter taking over from the legacy VH-3D Sea King that entered service in 1976, according to Marine Corps MAJ GEN Greg Masiello, program executive officer for air anti-submarine warfare, assault, and special mission programs at Naval Air Systems Command.

You can’t have fires on boats, so the Navy’s research on zinc batteries — which aren’t flammable — advances, reports C4ISRNET. The zinc-based batteries would provide an option to rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that are fire prone and struggle to gain safety approval.

On Afghanistan’s front line, there are no good choices, reports The New York Times. The Taliban have captured more than half of Afghanistan’s 400-odd districts. Kandahar, the second largest city in Afghanistan, has been under siege by Taliban fighters for a month.

The security situation in Afghanistan is so bad that the US Air Force has brought out some of its biggest guns in an attempt to stop the Taliban’s blitzkrieg throughout the country, reports Task & Purpose. However, the US signals no increase in airstrikes as Taliban advance across Afghanistan  reports The Associated Press. “It’s their country to defend now. It’s their struggle,” said Pentagon spokesman John Kirby.

Climate change is going to cost us … it already has,” says Joe Bryan, the senior climate adviser at the Pentagon, according to Defense News. DoD manages more than 1,700 global military installations on coastlines potentially vulnerable to sea level rises. A 2019 survey of 79 installations found about two-thirds vulnerable to recurrent flooding and half are under threat by drought or wildfires.

A two-legged robot financed by the military just completed a 5K jog. Cassie, as it’s named, used artificial intelligence to teach itself a running stride, reports Stars and Stripes. The Oregon State University students who developed Cassie see it as a step toward robots working alongside humans in various environments and performing tasks such as package delivery.



Navy Times reports, in story and photos, what a great power competition looks like from the deck of the USS Ross, as tensions play out on the Black Sea. During a traditional exercise in the Black Sea involving the US and Ukraine, Russian vessels asked the US destroyer to leave the area and also maintained a presence of four Russian warships  — sometimes visible while loitering four or five miles away, sometimes matching Ross’s course and speed just a mile and a half away.

Prosecutors could face a significant challenge making a case against Seaman Apprentice Ryan Sawyer Mays as instigator of the fire that destroyed Bonhomme Richard, reports Navy Times, since the scene of the crime has been destroyed. Bonhomme Richard has been decommissioned and sold for scrap.

USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker reports 296 ships underway on Aug. 9, 2021. Here are the approximate positions of the US Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world.

The Marine Corps’ sergeant major calls for improved treatment of junior Marines to keep them  in the corps longer, reports Marine Corps Times. Historically the Corps has had the youngest members in the DoD. SGT MAJ Troy Black’s comments come as the service begins changing retention, training, and promotion policies to better face off against China and other near-peer militaries.

Boeing’s KC-46 can now use its refueling boom for operational missions, reports Defense News, marking another small step forward for fielding the troubled tanker. US Transportation Command can now task the Boeing KC-46 tanker to refuel C-17 cargo planes, B-52 bombers and other KC-46s using its refueling boom. Previously, the KC-46 was only permitted to use its centerline drogue for refueling operations requested by TRANSCOM.

Seventeen months later, Congress still waits for details about the deadly al-Shabab attack in Manda Bay, Kenya, reports Military Times. “It is simply unacceptable for the Department to withhold information from Congress about a terrorist attack that killed three American citizens,” Rep. Steven Lynch (D-MA) and Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-WI) of the House Oversight Committee wrote to DefSec Lloyd Austin.

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