May 19, 2022

Art & Lifestyle:

ONR Touts ‘Historic’ 1st Test of Laser Defense System

Target drone in recovery parachute following a high energy laser engagement. (Photo courtesy of Lockheed Martin)

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 Navy has conducted a test of a new Layered Laser Defense system, reports Naval News. During the Office of Naval Research test, which ONR is calling “historic,” an all-electric, high-energy laser weapon built by Lockheed Martin was used to defeat a target representing a subsonic cruise missile in flight. The demonstration took place in February in New Mexico.

The US and Australia conducted a six-week training exercise with AN/ALQ-249 Next Generation Jammer Mid-Band pods at NAS Patuxent River, reports Naval Technology. It marked the first training event with the Royal Australian Air Force and the second logistics demonstration for the Airborne Electronic Attack Systems Program Office (PMA-234) at Pax River.

The US Navy’s E-2D Advanced Hawkeye that crashed off the coast of Virginia on March 30 has been salvaged, reports Navy Times. The aircraft was on a routine flight near Wallops Island when it went down. One crew member died. The crash is still being investigated.

A Government Accountability Office report released last week found that the Navy’s shipbuilder oversight offices are being underutilized, reports Navy Times. The service has been plagued by a series of shipbuilding problems that have delayed construction, increased costs, and impacted quality and performance across platforms. Increasing supervisors of shipbuilding responsibility could help improve program outcomes, according to the April 12 report.

Ukrainian forces said they struck and seriously damaged the flagship of Russia’s fleet in the Black Sea, reports The Associated Press. Early reports Thursday claimed the ship sank. Russia denied that the ship was struck by Ukrainian missiles, instead saying the ship had been badly damaged by a fire that forced its evacuation but that it was still afloat. But by Friday, Russia said the ship sank after losing its stability as it was being towed, reports ABC News.

As Finland and Sweden mull becoming part of NATO, Russia is warning of new nuclear deployments in the Baltics if that happens, reports The Hill. “There can be no talk of non-nuclear status for the Baltic” if Finland and Sweden join NATO, said Dmitry Medvedev, deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council.

Following Germany’s decision to buy a fleet of F-35s, NATO has begun updating its nuclear sharing mechanics to account for the jet’s next-generation capabilities, reports Defense News. Director of the NATO nuclear policy directorate Jessica Cox said the alliance was “moving fast and furiously towards F-35 modernization and incorporating those into our planning and into our exercising and things like that as those capabilities come online.”

The European Union will provide Ukrainian forces with equipment and supplies worth more than $500 million as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky continues his pleas for democratic nations to arm his country against tyranny, reports UPI.

The US expanded the types of weaponry it is providing to Ukraine in the latest $800 million arms package, reports Breaking Defense. The latest delivery will include howitzers, artillery, unmanned boats for coastal defense, and other equipment not part of earlier assistance packages.

The Washington Post reports that a formal diplomatic note was sent to the United States warning that US and NATO shipments of the “most sensitive” weapons systems to Ukraine were “adding fuel” to the conflict there and could bring “unpredictable consequences.”



A Defense Intelligence Agency report finds that the combined in-orbit space fleets of China and Russia grew more than 70% in just over two years, reports C4ISRNET. The agency claims this is evidence that both nations intend to undercut US and allied global leadership in the space domain. “Challenges to Security in Space” details Chinese and Russian efforts to establish space forces and expand space weapons capabilities are contributing to the increased militarization of space.

The US Air Force wants to buy Dronebuster 3 jammers from Oregon-based Flex Force Enterprises for use at Joint Base Andrews, reports Defense Daily. The Dronebuster is the only handheld electronic attack system authorized by DoD, according to Flex Force.

The banking industry has a new warning to consumers: Beware of new fraudulent “fraud alerts.” The criminals are trying to convince you they’re from the fraud department at your financial institution, in hopes you’ll give them access to your account, reports Marine Corps Times. “It’s despicable. Consumers in general are falling for it, because they think the call is coming from a place they trust that is trying to protect them,” said Stacey Nash, senior vice president of bank fraud and operations for USAA. More than 7,782 military consumers reported bank fraud in 2021.

Veterans Affairs officials warn about an increase in scam attempts targeting veterans’ pensions that could result in serious financial problems for elderly or infirm individuals, reports Marine Corps Times.

CAPT Gregory Sutton, incoming program manager, left, shakes hands with outgoing manager CAPT Ramiro Flores as Sutton assumes command of PMA-226 in a change of command ceremony. (NAVAIR News photo)

The Specialized and Proven Aircraft Program Office (PMA-226) at NAS Patuxent River welcomed CAPT Gregory Sutton as its new program manager during a ceremony April 7 in Cherry Point, NC. Sutton assumed command of PMA-226 from Capt. Ramiro Flores, reports The Baynet.

Water restrictions continued into last week at the William Beaumont Army Medical Center at Fort Bliss, Texas, reports Hospital employees and patients were able to use the water for handwashing and showering, but restrictions continued on its use for drinking or medical needs such as sterilization and surgery after sediment and discoloration was found March 25. The $1.3 billion facility opened nine months ago.

More than a hundred wind turbines will soon dot the Maryland coastline, pending federal approval, as part of a series of offshore renewable energy projects, reports Capital News Service. The projects, developed by companies US Wind and Ørsted, are slated to collectively power more than 600,000 homes in Delaware and Maryland upon their completion in 2026. The turbines will sit about 20 miles from Maryland’s shores.

The works of five local artists are featured on new benches in the Lexington Manor Passive Park. Ruby Bassford, Lea Craigie-Marshall, Michael Evans, Tom Rogers, and Nicole Stewart were chosen in a recent project co-sponsored by the Lexington Park Lions Club and St. Mary’s County Arts Council, reports The Southern Maryland Chronicle. The art pieces were unveiled during the recent Cherry Blossom Festival at the park just outside one of the gates at NAS Pax River at 21675 South Coral Drive in Lexington Park.


Patriot3 Inc., Fredericksburg, Virginia (H92240-22-D-0008), was awarded a $10,000,000 maximum ceiling value, single award, firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with an ordering period of up to five years for the acquisition of Patriot3 Inc. Jet Boots Dive Propulsion System(s) (JBDPS), JBDPS parts, and JBDPS repair/maintenance and training. Fiscal 2022 operations and maintenance funds in the amount of $110,000 are being obligated at the time of award. The majority of the work will be performed in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and is expected to be completed by fiscal 2027. This is a sole source contract under the authority of Federal Acquisition Regulation 6-302-1. US Special Operations Command, Tampa, Florida, is the contracting activity.

Huntington Ingalls Inc., Pascagoula, Mississippi, is awarded a $41,680,732 cost-plus-award-fee modification to previously awarded contract N00024-18-C-2312 to exercise options for accomplishment of follow yard services for the DDG 51 Class destroyer program. Work will be performed in Pascagoula, Mississippi (98%); Washington, DC (1%); and Bath, Maine (1%), and is expected to be completed by April 2023. Fiscal 2016 shipbuilding and conversion (Navy) (SCN) funds in the amount of $3,747,563 (18%); fiscal 2017 SCN funds in the amount of $2,182,007 (10%); fiscal 2018 SCN funds in the amount of $14,647,996 (71%); and fiscal 2020 research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) funds in the amount of $118,071 (1%) will be obligated at time of award. The RDT&E funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Sea Systems Command, Washington, DC, is the contracting activity.

VSE Corp., Alexandria, Virginia, is awarded an $8,492,453 firm-fixed-price, with cost contract line items for materials, shipping and travel, modification (P00011) to previously awarded contract M67854-20-C-0030 for equipment maintenance test support services. The total cumulative face value of the contract is $56,084,279. This contract modification provides for the exercise of options to continue vehicle maintenance and configuration testing support for the Assault Amphibious Vehicle and Amphibious Combat Vehicle Family of Vehicles. Work will be performed in Caroline County, Virginia, with an expected completion date of April 2023. Fiscal 2020 procurement (Marine Corps) funds in the amount of $1,272,986 will be obligated at the time of award and will expire at the end of the current fiscal year, and fiscal 2021 procurement (Marine Corps) funds in the amount of $867,362 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 (M67854-20-C-0030).

Peraton, Herndon, Virginia, was awarded a $118,209,707 firm-fixed-price contract for the procurement of services to support agile design and development of software used in the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command Systems for the Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense program. Bids were solicited via the internet with one received. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of April 13, 2027. US Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity. (W31P4Q-22-F-0120).

Science Applications International Corp. (SAIC), Reston, Virginia, is awarded a $41,000,000 modification to a previously awarded, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-fixed-fee contract (N66001-18-D-0023) to provide continuing sustainment support of integrated afloat and ashore tactical networks for Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific. No funds will be obligated at the time of award. Funds to be obligated include other procurement (Navy); ship construction (Navy); and operations and maintenance (Navy). This modification increases the estimated value of the contract from $196,526,884 to $237,526,884. Work will be performed in San Diego, California; globally aboard Navy ships; and at Department of Defense and military installations and facilities. The period of performance of the base award is from July 3, 2018, to July 2, 2023, and is not being extended by this modification. The Naval Information Warfare Center Pacific, San Diego, California, is the contracting activity.

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