The United States government has delivered Raytheon’s BGM-71 TOW anti-tank missiles to the Lebanese Army. They arrived at the Beirut airport, though the amount that was delivered remains undisclosed. The TOW missiles are tube-launched, optically tracked, and wirelessly guided. The purpose of the delivery is to help the Lebanese Army fight terrorism, as an unnamed official told The Daily Star.


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In May 2015, Polaris Defense, a pision of Polaris Industries, offered its Dagor Vehicle in response to the US Army's request for information regarding the ultra-light combat vehicle (ULCV) program. The goal of the ULCV program is to develop an air-droppable light off-road truck that will improve the mobility of light infantry brigades during joint forcible entry missions. The Dagor, which was launched at the 2014 AUSA Meeting and Exposition in Washington, is a purpose-built vehicle designed with trophy truck-inspired suspension, and can carry 3,250 pounds of payload or a nine-man infantry squad at a higher rate of speed over terrain usually travelled on foot.


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The Pilatus PC-24 has completed its first flight in Switzerland, two years after the jet was announced.It was originally thought that the PC-24 would make its first flight in late 2014, but after some delays it was finally able to make its maiden voyage. Deliveries are still expected to be on time - some time in 2017 - as was first announced back in 2013.The jet is a versatile one, as it is designed to have the capabilities of using paved and unpaved runways. This could be helpful for emergency landings or landing in places normal planes cannot.


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After the most recent International Defense Exposition and Conference, Lockheed Martin expects to sign deals with several international customers. Within seven to eight months Qatar will likely present a formal offer to Lockheed for their Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense system, also known as THAAD. Saudi Arabia is also discussing purchasing THAAD but it could be two or three years before a contract is signed. Middle Eastern countries are expected to be the first foreign buyers of the upgraded Patriot anti-missile weapon. As tensions rise in the Persian Gulf, spending on air defense is expected to increase in order to develop protection against enemy ballistic missiles and aircraft.


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The United States Army’s 82nd Airborne Division is evaluating the ultra-lightweight combat vehicle (ULCV) known as the Polaris MRZR-4.The Army has already purchased 33 vehicles for proof-of-principal tests, and is looking to purchase more, contingent on the tests. The House Armed Services Tactical Air and Land Forces subcommittee proposal for the National Defense Authorization Act requires the Secretary of the Army to give an answer to HASC by March 1, 2016 on whether or not to get more. Heidi Shyu, the Army’s chief weapons buyer, says that it is too early to tell what their decision will be, but the soldiers unsurprisingly prefer driving to walking.


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In February of 2015 at the US Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Florida, Lockheed Martin introduced its fifth-generation targeting and tracking system, dubbed the Legion Pod. The company claims that the Pod can be retroactively fitted onto older aircraft, giving them new infrared search and track (IRST) capabilities. According to company specifications, the Legion Pod is 98.5 inches in length, 16.0 inches in diameter, and weighs under 550 pounds.

For sensor systems, the Pod will use the company’s IRST21™ infrared sensor in combination with network and data processing technology to track airborne targets and communicate situational awareness information to allied aircraft. With development beginning in 2012, the Legion Pod was intended to primarily support the F-15C Eagle and F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter jets but is also configurable to numerous other aircraft platforms as the device is a modular design with line-replaceable units and an open “plug-and-play” architecture, meaning it can be transferable to any aircraft system. In addition, as a result of its infrared-based sensor, the Pod has the ability to remain hidden from radar detection while tracking and collecting target information. The Legion Pod was first operational onboard a select number of F/A-18E/F Super Hornets from the US Navy, but the Pod should be able to establish network communication among both legacy and next-generation aircraft.

The technology may also be a viable choice for a planned multi-domain adaptable processing system (MAPS), a project to enable communication between stealth aircraft. Via our proprietary website ASAP NSN Parts, ASAP Semiconductor is a leading supplier of Lockheed Martin products. Prospective customers can browse our inclusive inventory of hard-to-find obsolete and current Lockheed Martin parts at www.asap-nsnparts.us. If you are interested in a part, please feel free to contact our knowledgeable sales staff at sales@asap-nsnparts.us or 1-714-705-4780 for a quote.


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In March of 2015, Northrop Grumman received a USD $21.8 million contract modification to support the Space Tracking and Surveillance System (STSS-D), bringing the total cumulative contract value to USD $2.39 billion. The STSS-D constellation consists of two satellites, built by Northrop Grumman, orbiting at 1350 km, 58 degree inclination, with 120 minute orbital period.


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In March 2015, Lockheed Martin formally announced its entry for NASA’s commercial cargo program. The Space Systems International division of Lockheed Martin introduced a system comprised of a reusable tug (denoted Jupiter), its robotic arm, and a configurable cargo module (called Exoliner) which will be used in tandem to carry supplies to the International Space Station.


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The MQ-9 Block 5 Reaper attack drones will be provided to the U.S. Air Force by General Atomics.  Under the terms of a USD$279 million contract, 24 Reapers will be delivered. Spare parts support and other equipment support will be provided. The aircraft has been acquired by the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, NASA, the Royal Air Force, and the Italian Air Force. Essentially an upgraded Predator B, the UAS was developed with GA-ASI funding and provides significantly greater capabilities over its predecessor.  A variation of the MQ-1 Predator, the Reaper is designed for surveillance and attack missions and utilizes a variety of airborne sensors. General Atomics will perform the work on the Reaper in Poway, California, and is expected to be finished by September 2017.


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Bell-Boeing has delivered two MV-22 Osprey flight training simulators to the United States Marine Corps HMX-1 Presidential Airlift Squadron. The flight simulator will make the training program more efficient, as the system can create missions without having to fly the actual aircraft.


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Pratt & Whitney has contracted Rolls-Royce to produce and support LiftSystem technology for the F-35B Lightning II aircraft. The three contracts awarded to Rolls-Royce are worth USD$442 million. The contracts cover initial production of 17 LiftSystems for F-35B fighters. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program is estimated to cost over USD$1 trillion and will be the most expensive defense project including development, support, and expenses over its 55-year lifetime.


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Russia’s involvement in the Ukrainian crisis for the Crimean Peninsula has launched one of the Eastern European nation’s neighbors into a massive, precautionary defense spending spree. Poland announced in February 2015 that they will undergo a military modernization worth approximately USD$42 billion over the next decade. In the face of Russian aggression, including a simulated attack on Poland by the Russian army in 2009 and frequent (over 100 in 2014) Russian test flights close to the NATO and EU borders, Poland will procure a number of new weapons and defense systems including missile shields, anti-aircraft technology, armored carriers, submarines, and combat drones. This new allocation increases Poland’s spending to 2% of gross domestic product, in line with NATO’s spending recommendation.


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In February 2015, the French telecommunications company Sagem installed their new navigation system on the French Navy’s nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, the Charles de Gaulle. Done as part of a refit program, the upgrades were completed by the project management of the French government’s defense procurement agency, the Direction Generale de l’Armement. DCNS took the role as the prime contractor of the project in which Sagem supplied several different equipment systems such as the navigation system, alignment system, intelligence system, and several landing aids for the refit.


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NASA has recently released a new software, known as the Automatic Ground-Collision Avoidance System (Auto-GCAS), that the Air Force will be implementing onto their fleet of F-16 fighter jets. Auto-GCAS was developed with the cooperation of a number of private and government agencies, including: the Office of the Undersecretary for Personnel and Readiness, the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), NASA’s Armstrong Flight Research Center, the Air Force Test Center (AFTC), and Lockheed Martin.


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In February 2015, the multinational consortium, EuroJet was awarded a 3-year contract by the NATO Eurofighter & Tornado Management Agency. This 3-year contract calls for the continuation of support services for the EJ200 turbofan engine that is used to power the Eurofighter Typhoon multi-role combat aircraft. This contract is the sixth operational phase contract and will cover engine support for the Typhoon Program in four core nations: Germany, Spain, Italy, and the United Kingdom.


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The United States Marine Corps and Navy are getting ready to deploy the Boeing-Insitu RQ-21A Blackjack, a state-of-the-art unmanned aircraft, this spring. Insitu, which is a Boeing company, designed the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) to perform multiple duties, including supporting infantry regiments.


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Newly released on February 2, 2015, the White House’s defense budget for 2016 will be submitted for congressional approval later this week. Since grossly exceeding the $499 billion spending cap implemented by the 2011 Budget Control Act, the budget is expected to undergo much criticism and debate as it passes through Congress. The Act imposes automatic sequestration for any budget that exceeds the spending cap, and the realized defense budget for 2016 will likely be greatly reduced. Out of the total budget of approximately $535 billion dollars, the Air Force has requested $152.9 billion, the Navy requested $161 billion, and the Army requested $126.5 billion.


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Boeing has secured the rights to provide engineering support for the guidance system of the LGM-30G Minuteman III, a United States Air Force intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). The contract is worth USD$51 million.


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In January of 2015, the US Navy announced that the MV-22 Osprey will replace the C-2A Greyhound as the force’s primary aircraft for carrier on board delivery (COD) missions. The Navy currently has a fleet of 35 Greyhound turboprops. Manufactured by Northrop Grumman, the aging C-2As were first introduced in 1966 with the Navy’s newest C-2As dating back to the 1990s. As a derivative of the company’s airborne early warning E-2 Hawkeye aircraft, the Greyhound was fitted with a widened fuselage and rear door for cargo loading. On January 5, 2015 in a memo signed by Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jon Greenert, and Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Joseph Dunford, the US Navy decided to replace the Greyhounds rather than upgrade them with new wings, a new cockpit, and a new engine system as was previously planned.


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On January 27, 2015, the American telecommunications equipment company, Harris Corporation, was awarded a contract by the US Air National Guard to provide integrated tactical and land mobile radio communication systems. These communication systems include a five-channel vehicle communication system that will play a big role in ground-to-air correspondence in situations such as wartime, domestic emergency responses, and natural disasters. In addition to providing hardware to the US Air National Guard, the contract also calls for Harris Corporation to cover installation, training, and continuous service and support.


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