A sailor welds during the ongoing maintinance availability for carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69) on June 26, 2014. US Navy Photo
This post has been updated following Pentagon and Navy press briefings on the FY 2018 budget.
THE PENTAGON – The Department of the Navy’s $180-billion budget request sets out to improve overall readiness of the Navy and the Marine Corps while making only modest asks for new aircraft and ships. Read More
USS Sampson (DDG-102) steams along San Celemente Island on May 7, 2017. US Navy Photo
Since the last Pentagon budget request 15 months ago there’s been a presidential election, a seven-month continuing resolution, a supplemental spending bill, promises from the new administration for a military spending spree, vows from inside the Pentagon to rebuild readiness and multiple studies looking at what a future naval fleet should look like.
In the churn leading up to this week’s release of the Fiscal Year 2018 budget request to Congress, questions still remain on the Navy’s acquisition and readiness plans. The following is a list of important policy and acquisition issues that Navy officials have declined to comment on but have assured USNI News and the public that answers would be found in the budget request. Read More
USS Arlington (LPD-24) under construction at Ingalls Shipbuilding. Huntington Ingalls Industries Photo
House and Senate appropriators reached an agreement to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year that includes a $593-billion defense spending package to allow the Navy and Marine Corps to continue with planned ship and aircraft procurement and readiness increases. Read More
A U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18C Hornet with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 232 “Red Devils” departs the runway at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, March 24, 2017. US Marine Corps photo.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Marine Corps could save about a billion dollars, reduce risk for pilots seeing too few flight hours each month and bring additional high-end capability to the fleet if the service were able to buy its F-35B and C Joint Strike Fighters at a faster pace, the deputy commandant for aviation said on Tuesday. Read More
The Marine Corps released its 2017 Marine Aviation Plan today, outlining its upcoming aircraft acquisition and upgrade plans and providing a glimpse of how those new capabilities will come together in various operational scenarios. Read More
The following is the recently released 2017 U.S. Marine Corps aviation plan. Read More
An F-35C Lightning II carrier variant, assigned to the Salty Dogs of Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 23, performs a touch-and-go landing on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN-73). US Navy Photo
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Navy has completed testing on potential solutions to solve a ‘must fix’ catapult launch problem on the carrier version of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lighting II Joint Strike Fighter, the head of the JSF joint program office said on Wednesday. Read More
Two Marine Corps F-35B Lightning II, assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 121, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, transit the Pacific Ocean on Jan. 9, 2017. US Marine Corps Photo
ARLINGTON, Va. — Lockheed Martin is working closely with the military services to keep new and old airplane types alike in good material condition, but a broken budgeting process and difficulty in fully funding spare parts have made that a challenge, the company’s vice president of sustainment operations said. Read More
The Navy conducts its first live fire demonstration to successfully test the integration of F-35 with existing Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter Air architecture, Sept. 12, 2016. US Navy Photo
ARLINGTON, Va. — Lockheed Martin plans to conduct a live-fire test of the F-35B Joint Strike Fighter directing an Aegis Combat System engagement next year, as well as the first flight of the Offensive Anti-Surface Warfare missile at the end of this year, both to bolster the Navy’s distributed lethality concept. Read More
An F-35 Lightning II stationed at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., departs the runway during the Australian International Airshow and Aerospace & Defence Exposition (AVALON) on March 4, 2017, in Geelong, Australia. US Air Force photo.
This post has been updated to include information from U.S. Marine Corps Forces Pacific.
Current and future F-35 Joint Strike Fighter operators met this week to discuss plans for leveraging the fifth-generation airplane in the Pacific. Read More