Dog and Cat

No M1 Production but New Engineering Contract for General Dynamics (GD)

The Army’s proposal to shut down M1 tank production by General Dynamics (GD) for a few years was not well received by Congress. The current budget proposals on the Hill include some production work. Even so the Army is closing out the Fiscal Year by awarding GD a large, engineering contract to begin development of the next major upgrade for the venerable M1 Abrams Main Battle Tank (MBT).

The almost $400 million contract will begin the Abrams Engineering Change Proposal (ECP) 1 program. This will eventually lead to production cut in of a major upgrade to the current M1A2SEPv2 model of the tank.

M1′s have now been in use for almost 30 years and like ships and aircraft programs have seen major changes including the integration of new weapons, systems and improvements. The ECP 1 upgrades will lead to a re-design of the tank’s internal systems freeing up weight, space and power for further enhancements and upgrades. This will take advantage of improvements in design of modern electronics and general changes in technology.

GD will most likely receive some sort of production contract for FY13 despite the Army’s proposal. On top of that there will be continued investment in the M1 even with the sequestration issues for the next few years.

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Northrop Grumman Continues DTS Support

The Defense Travel System (DTS) is the on line system the Pentagon uses to manage travel. It is designed to aid the traveler in booking their flights, hotels and other arrangements. After the trip it then helps prepare their claim and file it. It is tied to their government credit card.

As can be imagined DTS is a large, complicated system processing 1,000′s of transactions a day. This all used to be done by hand and then after a scandal in the late Eighties when the costs to do this were calculated different, more automated systems were developed. Several years ago the Defense Department standardized on DTS.

Northrop Grumman (NOC) was just awarded a one year extension to their contract managing the system. The contract is valued at over $28 million and is the 15th year the company has worked with DTS.

DTS illustrates that the Pentagon spends a great deal of its budget on things like personnel, benefits and administrative costs. This is why the current plans to help reduce defense spending see reductions in the number of troops and changes to how healthcare and retirement are payed for.

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Reports of 2 Deals for AH-64D Apaches

There are reports that 2 Asian nations have decided to purchase Boeing’s (BA) AH-64D Apache attack helicopters. These advanced aircraft are in use with the U.S. Army and several allied nations such as Great Britain, the Netherlands, Israel and others. They have seen extensive use in Afghanistan and Iraq. The U.S. is currently buying AH-64D Block III versions of the helicopter.

Now it seems that India will be adding them to their inventory. The plan is to purchase 22 aircraft with weapons and other support. Total contract value could be as high as $1.4 billion. India had also been looking at the Russian Mil-28 helicopter. India has recently been looking to more Western sources and already has purchase Boeing P-8 and C-17 aircraft. The deal will include offsets allowing for Boeing purchases and investment in India.

It is also being reported that Indonesia will move out and buy 8 AH-64D. There are less details on this proposal available. Indonesia was looking at using a domestically produced aircraft for this mission but it now seems the Apache is a preferred option.

The U.S. military has invested billions in rotary wing platforms over the last decade as they have been a critical force multiplier. The plans to reduce their spending over the next decade will make contracts like this more important to the bottom line of defense contractors.

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Logic PD leverages IAR Embedded Workbench for MCU design and development — Press Release

roduct design and development experts opt for tools from IAR Systems for compact code, speed optimizations, reduced bill of materials, seamless project setup and excellent support

Uppsala, Sweden—September 24, 2012—IAR Systems announced today that Logic PD is leveraging IAR Embedded Workbench® for many of its design and development projects spanning industries such as industrial agriculture, consumer, and medical, to name a few. Logic PD, known for its product innovation, has been using the best-of-breed IAR Embedded Workbench for several years as one of its development tools of choice. Logic PD chooses IAR Embedded Workbench year after year because of its superior code density, speed optimization, seamless project setup and excellent support.

Based on EEMBC industry benchmarks, IAR Embedded Workbench has emerged as the strongest development tool suite for generating fast, compact code. IAR Systems’ powerful C/C++ compiler, using patented Multi File Compilation, a technique that enables the compiler to better optimize across the entire application, outperforms competitive offerings, delivering 30 percent denser code than GNU compilers. Thanks to this superior efficiency, Logic PD is able to design products using components with less memory and speed, significantly reducing the customer’s bill of materials in high-volume designs.

“Customers come to us when they need superior engineering expertise,” said Perry McGahan, Vice President of Software Engineering, Logic PD. “We continue to employ IAR Embedded Workbench because of IAR Systems’ broad architectural coverage, tools and excellent support.”

With the ability to discover, design, develop and deliver market-leading products under one roof, Logic PD benefits from the quick project setup capabilities and development workflow of IAR Embedded Workbench. Even when development schedules are tight, Logic PD’s experienced team of engineering problem solvers design and deliver innovative products. IAR Systems’ support further boosts this efficiency by providing reliable and consistent account management. Logic PD has enjoyed more than eight years of service from the same account manager, who has brought a depth of knowledge and level of responsiveness not often found in the industry.

“Logic PD has a stellar track record in the industry, serving as a guru engineering team when it comes to developing breakthrough designs,” noted Robert DeOliveira, Director of Strategic Sales, IAR Systems. “We are honored that IAR Embedded Workbench has played a role in helping Logic PD achieve this reputation. Our ability to deliver best-in-class tools and to provide consistent, immediate support has ensured that Logic PD designs using IAR Embedded Workbench are reliable—a definite plus for products targeting the regulatory and high-volume markets.”

More information about IAR Embedded Workbench for ARM is available at www.iar.com/ewarm.

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Oshkosh Defense Unveils New Light Vehicle for Unconventional, Recon Missions at Modern Day Marine 2012 — Press Release

Oshkosh L-ATV selected for the JLTV EMD phase also on display

OSHKOSH, Wis. (Sept. 24, 2012) — Expanding its portfolio of light military vehicles, Oshkosh Defense, a division of Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE:OSK), is unveiling its new Special Purpose All-Terrain Vehicle (S-ATV) designed for unconventional and reconnaissance missions at Modern Day Marine 2012, Sept. 25-27 in Quantico, Va. Oshkosh will also have its Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle (L-ATV), which was selected for the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) phase, at the show.

“We have developed a broad range of high-performance light vehicles to offer Warfighters next-generation capabilities for future battlefields,” said John Bryant, vice president and general manager of Joint and Marine Corps Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Our L-ATV and S-ATV platforms, coupled with an array of Oshkosh-developed HMMWV upgrade solutions, demonstrate exciting innovations. The off-road mobility, crew protection and reliability that are hallmarks of our heavy, medium and MRAP platforms have been leveraged in different ways across these light vehicles to meet a range of operational needs.”

Oshkosh specifically designed the S-ATV based on emerging worldwide requirements for forces performing unconventional and reconnaissance missions. The S-ATV utilizes Oshkosh’s battle-proven off-road technologies and expertise to nimbly travel across rugged, remote and urban terrains at high speeds. The vehicle is available in multiple weight and protection configurations.

Delivering the Oshkosh JLTV Solution

Oshkosh received a contract in August to deliver 22 Light Combat Tactical All-Terrain Vehicle (L-ATV) prototypes for the JLTV EMD phase, as well as to support government testing and evaluation of the vehicles. The joint services are expected to replace tens of thousands of HMMWVs with the JLTV.

“The Oshkosh JLTV solution was designed with a purpose – to keep Warfighters safe on future battlefields with unpredictable terrain, tactics, and threats,” said John Bryant, vice president and general manager of Joint and Marine Corps Programs for Oshkosh Defense. “Oshkosh has a 90-year history of delivering high quality military vehicle programs on-time and on-budget, and our JLTV program is no exception. We understand how critical this light, protected, off-road vehicle will be to Warfighters.”

The Oshkosh L-ATV offers an advanced crew protection system that has been extensively tested and is proven to optimize crew survivability. The L-ATV can accept multiple armor configurations, which allows the vehicle to adapt easily to changing operational requirements. The L-ATV also applies the Oshkosh TAK-4i™ intelligent independent-suspension system to provide significantly faster speeds when operating off-road, which can be critical to troops’ safety.

Oshkosh executives will be on hand to discuss the vehicles, technologies and vehicle lifecycle management at booth #2404.

About Oshkosh Defense

Oshkosh Defense, a division of Oshkosh Corporation, is an industry-leading global designer and manufacturer of tactical military trucks and armored wheeled vehicles, delivering a full product line of conventional and hybrid vehicles, advanced armor options, proprietary suspensions and vehicles with payloads that can exceed 70 tons. Oshkosh Defense provides a global service and supply network including full life-cycle support and remanufacturing, and its vehicles are recognized the world over for superior performance, reliability and protection. For more information, visit www.oshkoshdefense.com.

About Oshkosh Corporation

Oshkosh Corporation is a leading designer, manufacturer and marketer of a broad range of specialty access equipment, commercial, fire & emergency and military vehicles and vehicle bodies. Oshkosh Corporation manufactures, distributes and services products under the brands of Oshkosh®, JLG®, Pierce®, McNeilus®, Jerr-Dan®, Oshkosh Specialty Vehicles, Frontline™, CON-E-CO®, London® and IMT®. Oshkosh products are valued worldwide in businesses where high quality, superior performance, rugged reliability and long-term value are paramount. For more information, visit www.oshkoshcorporation.com.

®, TM All brand names referred to in this news release are trademarks of Oshkosh Corporation or its subsidiary companies.
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Boeing Receives Next Production Order for P-8 Aircraft

Despite the threat of sequestration and its effect on next year’s budget the Pentagon continues to issue orders as FY12 comes to an end. Many existing hardware contracts received their annual buys over the last few months.

Boeing (BA), for example, just received the latest production lot for the new anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and patrol aircraft for the U.S. Navy. The P-8A Posieden is a modified 737 airliner. The contract is for another 11 aircraft and is valued at close to $2 billion.

The P-8A is replacing the P-3C originally manufactured by Lockheed Martin (LMT). The P-8A has been in development since 2004 and the first squadron is expected to stand up next year.

The aircraft has also been purchased by India in one of the largest defense deals a U.S. company has ever had with it.

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Bath Iron Works Awarded $39 Million for DDG 1000 Class Services — Press Release

BATH, Maine, Sept. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — The U.S. Navy has awarded General Dynamics Bath Iron Works, a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), a $38.9 million modification to a previously awarded contract to perform class and engineering services associated with the detail design and construction of DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class ships.

Bath Iron Works will continue to provide manufacturing support services such as engineering, design, production control, accuracy control and information technology. Other class-support efforts include program management, contract and financial management, procurement and configuration/data management. The original contract was awarded in September 2011. Work is expected to be completed by October 2013.

Jeff Geiger, president of Bath Iron Works, said, “With all three Zumwalt-class ships now under construction, this award demonstrates the Navy’s continued confidence in Bath Iron Works. The contract enables us to continue supporting the construction of DDG 1000-class ships and allows us to maintain the critical shipyard skills needed to efficiently produce them. Zumwalt (DDG 1000) is over 60 percent complete and we are leveraging what we’ve learned in building the lead ship to support our DDG 1001 and 1002 construction efforts. We remain focused on delivering high-quality, affordable Bath-built ships to the U.S. Navy.”

The DDG 1000 Zumwalt-class destroyer is the U.S. Navy’s next-generation, guided-missile naval destroyer, leading the way for a new generation of advanced multi-mission surface combat ships. The ships will feature a low radar profile, an integrated power system and a total ship computing environment infrastructure. Armed with an array of weapons, the Zumwalt-class destroyers will provide offensive, distributed and precision fires in support of forces ashore.

More information about General Dynamics Bath Iron Works can be found at www.gdbiw.com.

More information about General Dynamics is available at www.gd.com.

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Discussion of Sequestration Effects Heats Up

As part of the Budget Control Act last year that emerged after a failed consensus between President Obama and Congress to deal with the U.S. government’s budget issues a plan was put in place for automatic cuts to spending. This sequestration of funds requires about $1 Trillion in cuts over the next 10 years. In FY13 this would amount to just under $100 billion with half coming out of the defense budget.

The way the Pentagon is approaching this is to apply the cuts evenly across all appropriations and spending which amounts to a 9.4% reduction in spending. This may be adjusted as they get closer to the actual implementation to fully fund some critical items such as personnel and medical costs which would mean some investment programs may see bigger cuts.

For some programs a 9.4% reduction would not be that significant. You buy less of an item, you maybe drive, fly or sail it less, you don’t have as much training supplies as in the past. For others it might be much worse. A 10% cut in R&D for a program could cause multi-year delays in completing development or testing meaning the system wouldn’t get into service as soon. It may be that a program would be cancelled as it wouldn’t be executable without that level of funding.

There are concerns with some of the big acquisition programs that utilize multi-year production contracts. These rely on a 5 year deal with the OEM providing for a specific number of items to be delivered each year. If the 9.4% cut happens and this number is reduced below the minimum the contract may have to be renegotiated leading to cost increases. The KC-46A tanker contract also faces some issues as it is a Firm Fixed Price (FFP) contract and the cut may reduce its funding below what was negotiated with Boeing (BA) when the contract was awarded which also could lead to a need to renegotiate.

As expected pretty much every one is against sequestration and have lately spoken up about dealing with it. Primarily by transferring the spending reductions from the Pentagon to other parts of the Federal government. This includes legislators, Pentagon officials, industry, local governments and employees. All would expect to see some hardship as the spending cuts are implemented.

The media is full of articles such as this, Sequestration threatens Portsmouth Naval Shipyard jobs, workload, from Seacoastonline.com.

Congressman Connelly (D-VA), who has a lot of defense contractors and civil servants in his district, wants Congress to stop campaigning and stay in DC to work out a resolution.

Studies are being done to calculate how many jobs will be lost due to the budget cuts and what industries will be affected the most.

There is also discussion of the effect beyond defense as the rest of the government would lose $50 billion in funding which would cause programs to be cut, eliminated and people laid off.

Overall the issue will continue to be there through the November elections. Most likely no attempt will be made to deal with this until after that when the lame duck Congress will have to also deal with the expiration of the Bush tax cuts and other budget issues. There probably will be a big omnibus bill that addresses all of this.

Will sequestration actually happen for defense? It is hard to say right now. Everyone should be planning for it and calculating how to implement it. This includes the Services, acquisition program managers, and contractors. The U.s. should be expecting reduced defense spending as the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq winds down and wartime requirements are eliminated. It would be better if it was done in a more planned fashion.

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Treating Brain Injuries – October 2012

In this podcast, we look at how one organization is working to treat brain injuries, how unmanned aircraft manufacturers are looking overseas for new markets and the uncertain future for the MRAP.

NAVISTAR DEFENSE TO UPGRADE 2,300 MRAPS TO DEFEND AGAINST EVOLVING THREATS — Press Release

LISLE, Ill., (September 19, 2012) Navistar Defense, LLC received a delivery order today for up to $282 million to provide more than 2,300 survivability upgrade retrofit kits for International® MaxxPro® Dash Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles. The order from the U.S. Army TACOM Life Cycle Management Command will upgrade MaxxPro Dash vehicles in theater with additional protection in response to evolving threats in Afghanistan. The order also includes parts and service.

“Anticipating the needs of our Armed Forces continues to be a top priority for Navistar and we are proud to offer the vehicle of choice to help them complete their missions safely,” said Archie Massicotte, president, Navistar Defense. “Threats continue to change and it is our responsibility to stay out ahead of those threats with the best technology available.”

The MaxxPro family of vehicles was originally designed to accommodate rapid vehicle enhancements as threats evolved in theater. Since 2007, the company has provided enhancements to both survivability and mobility through its work on its rolling chassis body swap, DXM™ independent suspension retrofit kits, armor kits and more.

“We also understand the balance of keeping our service men and women well equipped at a reasonable cost to taxpayers,” said Massicotte. “We will keep offering integrated solutions as well as alternatives to buying new vehicles so that we can keep our Armed Forces modern and ready for future operations.”

Navistar has delivered nearly 9,000 MaxxPro units in nine major variants to the United States and its allies. This order follows the company’s MaxxPro rolling chassis body swap, which upgrades more than 2,700 MaxxPro vehicles with a DXM™ independent suspension, MaxxForce® 9.3 engine, 570 amp alternator and driveline.

Work for the survivability upgrade will be done in Afghanistan beginning in December 2012. The order is scheduled to be completed by July 2013.

Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV) is a holding company whose subsidiaries and affiliates produce International® brand commercial and military trucks, MaxxForce® brand diesel engines, IC Bus™ brand school and commercial buses and Navistar RV brand of recreational vehicles. It also is a private-label designer and manufacturer of diesel engines for the pickup truck, van and SUV markets. The company also provides truck and diesel engine service parts. Another affiliate offers financing services. Additional information is available at www.Navistar.com/navistar/news.

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Raytheon AESA for F-15E Enters LRIP

While the United States continues development and testing of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) it must continue to utilize its older fighter and attack aircraft. The F-15, F-16 and F/A-18 all originally entered service in the late Seventies and Eighties but have continued to be upgraded with new electronics, systems and weapons. As part of this all 3 will eventually be fitted with new Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar systems to replace the mechanically scanned systems currently used. The AESA offer better reliability and ease of maintenance over the older systems.

Raytheon (RTN) is already producing a new radar for the F/A-18 used by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps and several allied nations. Over 300 have been delivered for retrofit on aircraft.

Raytheon is also providing the new radars for the F-15C and F-15E aircraft used by the Air Force and Air National Guard (ANG). The F-15C variants have begun receiving them and a contract was recently awarded for the Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) of the one for the F-15E strike version. Initially 6 systems will be delivered as part of this contract.

Even with the threat of budget reductions in the near future these programs will continue. They will most likely see cuts in quantities and slower development but they are necessary to provide the capabilities needed by these aircraft.

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Lockheed Martin Awarded $35.98 Million Contract To Solidify Long Range Radar Requirement for 3DELRR Program — Press Release

SYRACUSE, N.Y., Sept. 18, 2012 – The U.S. Air Force awarded Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] a nearly $36 million contract for the next part of its Three Dimensional Expeditionary Long Range Radar (3DELRR) program.

The 3DELRR is intended to serve as the principal long-range, ground-based sensor for detecting, identifying, tracking, and reporting aerial targets for the Air Force. The system, which will replace the AN/TPS-75 air surveillance radar, will be capable of detecting new, emerging air defense threats and managing challenging battlefield air control scenarios out to extended ranges.

Under the Pre-Engineering and Manufacturing Development (Pre-EMD) Period of the Technology Development Phase, the Air Force is expected to review industry trade studies to help set final radar requirements, conduct preliminary design reviews, and demonstrate radar system-level technology maturity.  At the end of this 15-month phase, the Air Force is expected to award an EMD and low-rate production contract.

Lockheed Martin has 178 long-range radars operational around the world and has made significant investments to reduce risk and drive affordability for the 3DELRR program.

“We need to give battlefield commanders the most response time possible to detect and prosecute emerging threats.  Only advanced technology long-range radar like 3DELRR can do that,” said Mark Mekker, director of ground-based surveillance radar for Lockheed Martin’s Mission Systems & Sensors business.  “Our 3DELRR technology is mature, focused on not just performing now, but evolving and extending system life as required. We can offer that radar to the U.S. Air Force today.”

In December 2010, Lockheed Martin unveiled a functioning full-scale system prototype as proof of the radar’s maturity.  At the time, the radar’s design addressed 100 percent of 3DELRR requirements, including critical extended air surveillance reach for early warning from threats, such as aircraft and ballistic missiles. This was the second and final demonstration required under a $25 million, 20-month technology development contract awarded in May 2009.

Work on the 3DELRR program is performed at the company’s Syracuse, N.Y. and Moorestown, N.J. facilities.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 120,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation’s net sales for 2011 were $46.5 billion.

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Concept illustration courtesy of Lockheed Martin.

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New LDRA Point Tool Enforces Programming Rules, Improving Software Quality and Consistency — Press Release

LDRArules—easily configured—draws on industry’s largest collection of programming standards

Boston, MA, DESIGN East. September 18, 2012. LDRA, the leading provider of automated software verification, source code analysis and test tools, announces LDRArules™, a programming rule checker that brings together a collection of rules from a broad spectrum of programming standards. Implemented as a stand-alone product, LDRArules enables development teams to improve their software quality by selecting and adhering to relevant industry programming standards. Companies can easily configure LDRArules for a specific programming standard or choose to enforce in-house programming templates and improve their overall software development methodology.

LDRA Offers Industry’s Largest Collection of Coding Standards

For nearly 40 years, LDRA has developed and driven the market for software that automates code analysis and software testing for safety-, mission- and security-critical markets. Because programming errors are responsible for more than 70% of software defects, LDRA has actively worked on a number of standards bodies and organizations to develop programming standards that achieve early error identification and correction.

As a result, LDRA offers programming standard conformance for more than a dozen programming standards, including MISRA-C:1998, MISRA-C:2004, MISRA AC, MISRA C++:2008, CERT C, CERT J, CWE, HIS, JPL, JSF++ AV, High Integrity C++, SPARK Ada subset and the Ravenscar Profile. The programming standards provide programming rules across the primary languages used in embedded design: C, C++, Ada and Java.

Developers can choose rules for a specific industry standard or they can select a combination of rules from a variety of standards, creating customized templates tailored for their company and projects. LDRArules documents which rules have been selected, ensuring complete transparency of what programming rules have been implemented.

“LDRA’s aim is to enable companies to achieve zero-defect software,” stated Ian Hennell, LDRA Operations Director. “By simply implementing a programming standard, companies can eradicate 70% of their software defects and significantly decrease overall development cost. By automating an immediate check of code as it’s being written, software defects are identified at their inception, saving the tremendous time and cost of identifying errors late in the development lifecycle.”

Adherence to Programming Standards Offers Many Benefits

Compliance with programming standards enables developers to:

  • Promote portability and avoid unexpected results
  • Ensure there is no reliance placed on compiler or platform-specific constructs
  • Identify unreachable or infeasible code which often indicates a defect that will, at the very least, impact software maintainability
  • Prohibit certain language constructs known to be a source of common errors
  • Measurably reduce program complexity
  • Improve program testability, easing standard compliance and certifiability

HCC Embedded, a TCP/IP and file systems provider to companies developing software for medical, transport, industrial and aerospace markets, chose LDRA tools to enforce MISRA-C:2004 to ensure its products delivered superior quality, stability and portability for its customers. HCC Embedded’s CEO Dave Hughes confirmed, “LDRA’s tools helped us adopt a more disciplined process. We needed a standards checker that systematically enforced good programming methods.”

Hennell adds, “With this methodology, programming errors are identified when code is being written and, therefore, can be immediately corrected. This shortens the debug process and mitigates schedule, safety and security risk.”

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About LDRA

For more than 40 years, LDRA has developed and driven the market for software that automates code analysis and software testing for safety-, mission-, security- and business-critical markets. Working with clients to achieve early error identification and full compliance with industry standards, LDRA traces requirements through static and dynamic analysis to unit testing and verification for a wide variety of hardware and software platforms. Boasting a worldwide presence, LDRA is headquartered in the UK with subsidiaries in the United States with an extensive distributor network. For more information on the LDRA tool suite, please visit: www.ldra.com.

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F-35 JSF News Roundup

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is the largest defense acquisition program ever and it continues despite the budget uncertainty in the United States. If sequestration is implemented the program will most likely see across the board reductions in funding. This could lead to reduced production numbers and delays in the test and development program. The JSF while it is in low rate production is still facing concurrency as it moves toward a final design. The program is led by Lockheed Martin (LMT).

Some recent stories about the program include:

The new test plan for the program was reviewed by DoD leadership and did not win approval. There are major concerns with the pace of development for the new helmet the pilot wears that provides data directly to them rather then relying on their instruments.

Lockheed received a contract from the U.S. Navy worth over $200 million to begin implementing Israeli specific modifications to support that country’s buy of the aircraft.

In another move related to the foreign sales of the program Canada has hired KPMG to analyze the cost basis used by the government to award their contract for 65 F-35 to replace existing CF-18 fighters.

Despite all of this news the program continues with training, testing and development as Lockheed steadily delivers aircraft from the first 4 production batches. They also continue to work with the Government on the next buy.

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Chemring Detection Systems Awarded $49M For Biological Detection Systems — Press Release

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Sept. 13, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Chemring Detection Systems (“CDS”) a Chemring Group (“Chemring”) company, announced a $49M contract award to supply biological detection systems to the US Army and US Navy. The award was made by the Edgewood Contracting Division of the Aberdeen Providing Grounds Contracting Command for over 100 Joint Biological Point Detection Systems (JBPDS) and Initial Fielding Packages. The systems will be installed on Navy ships such as the USS Ross (DDG 71) and in the Stryker Nuclear Biological Chemical Reconnaissance Vehicle (NBCRV).

The Joint Biological Point Detection System (JBPDS) provides automatic detection and identification of airborne biological agents at very low levels, triggers local and remote warning systems, and communicates threat information over standard communication systems. JBPDS is manufactured in CDS’ Charlotte, NC facility. The systems are due for delivery between December 2012 and December 2013.

The JBPDS program is an US Army program managed by the Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense (JPEO-CBD). The system is the only US Biological Detection system that has been through Whole System Live Agent Test. There are many variants of the JBPDS including Shipboard, HMMWV shelter, trailer and standalone fixed-emplacement. Multiple systems can be networked for command and control from a single operational interface to provide a broad area of surveillance. The JBPDS is available for sale to international customers with an approved US State Department export license.

Chemring is a market leading manufacturing business supplying high technology electronics and energetic products to over 80 countries around the world. Chemring has a diverse portfolio of products that predominantly protect military people and platforms, providing insurance against a constantly changing threat. These range from countermeasures to protect aircraft, to ground penetrating radar to protect troops and vehicles from improvised explosive devices. Chemring Detection Systems offers various exportable solutions to detect and identify chemical, biological and explosive threats. CDS is worldwide provider of point detection capability for biological, Chemical Warfare Agents (CWA), Toxic Industrial Chemical (TIC) and explosives trace detection. Additionally, CDS also provides standoff detection for chemical and explosive threats.

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SAIC’s Break Up to Add Value — Seeking Alpha

Here is an exclusive article I wrote for Seeking Alpha discussing the plan to breakup SAIC (SAI).

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More Punisher Work for ATK

The XM-25 Punisher is a man portable weapon that fires 25mm programmable air burst shells. It is the result of the U.S. Army’s attempt to develop a new rifle earlier this century. The XM-8 rifle program was cancelled but it was decided to continue work on the XM-25. Alliant Techsystems (ATK) is the prime contractor for the XM-25. The system was issued in small numbers and tested in Afghanistan over the last several months and proved very effective. It is issued at the squad level and provides fire support for the members.

In March ATK was given a contract to continue the Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) of the Punisher. This was worth about $70 million. Now a further contract to continue EMD was issued this week. That one has a value of around $17 million.

The continued contract awards show that the Pentagon has interest in the Punisher and its further limited production and use. Once EMD is complete a decision will be made to bring it into large scale production.

ATK also will support a further assessment of the weapon in Afghanistan by providing another 36 XM-25 for use. The data collected in these types of trials will only aid development and providing the best systems possible.

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General Dynamics Awarded $42 Million to Support U.S. Army Medical Research and Development Programs — Press Release

FAIRFAX, Va., Sept. 11, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — General Dynamics Information Technology, a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GD), was awarded a $41.8 million task order by the U.S. Army Medical Research Materiel Command to provide support services for vaccine, drug and medical device development programs to the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Development Activity. This task order was awarded under the TRICARE Evaluation, Analysis and Management Support (TEAMS) contract vehicle and has a term of four years and seven months. USAMMDA is the U.S. Department of Defense’s advanced medical materiel development activity for products designed to protect and preserve the lives of service members.

General Dynamics will deliver a wide range of services to help the USAMMDA guide new medical technologies through the U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulatory and certification process and develop plans to bring these new products into service. General Dynamics has partnered with Tunnell Government Services Inc., a life sciences technical services consulting leader in biotechnology, medical devices and pharmaceutical product development, on this contract. The companies will provide health, medical research, clinical trial and regulatory expertise as well as information, acquisition and program management support services.

“Medical research plays a critical role in ensuring that U.S. servicemen and servicewomen are protected before, during and after a mission,” said Marcus Collier, senior vice president, Health and Civilian Solutions division, General Dynamics Information Technology. “Our unique combination of health, military and IT expertise will help the USAMMDA develop new leading-edge medical solutions.”

General Dynamics anticipates hiring more than 30 new employees to perform this work at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Md. The company has supported the USAMMDA for four years under a task order issued by the U.S. Army Medical Research Acquisition Activity.

USAMMDA develops new drugs, vaccines and medical support devices that enhance readiness, ensure provisions of the highest quality medical care to the DoD and maximize the survival of medical casualties on the battlefield. The product managers at USAMMDA guide promising new concepts and technologies developed in the USAMRMC laboratories through advanced development and the regulatory process to obtain U.S. FDA certification. Upon FDA certification, USAMMDA works in conjunction with the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency to develop plans for fielding medical materiel.

For more information about General Dynamics Information Technology, please visit www.gdit.com.

More information about General Dynamics is available online at www.generaldynamics.com.

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AMDR Work Continues, Northrop Announces Testing Success

The U.S. Navy is in the process of developing the successor to the SPY-1 radar and combat system that makes up part of the AEGIS Weapon System mounted on cruisers and destroyers. Originally designed to deal with a large number of aircraft and anti-ship missiles the system has been modified to address the ballistic missile threat to the United States. The new radar program is called the Air and Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) and is currently in development.

In 2010 3 different contracts were awarded to U.S. defense contractors Northrop Grumman (NOC), Raytheon (RTN) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) to develop a version of the radar. The goal is later this year to move forward with another contract to complete development and engineering with a goal of selecting one provider. The new radar will go on ships like the DDG-1000 and new DDG-52 ships as they are built.

All 3 contractors have experience with Navy ship building, radars and missiles. In August Lockheed announced that it had already submitted their proposal for the next step of the program. Now today Northrop is showing its system and its testing. They also turned in a proposal this summer for the next phase.

Their AMDR system has completed some of its initial range testing including Near and Far field in Maryland. The testing has been successful demonstrating the capabilities of their design.

The AMDR program once it completes development and goes into production will replace the SPY-1 in the role of air as well as missile defense. While the Navy program for new ships remains in flux after 2013 due to the potential reductions in the U.S. defense budget it represents a huge program as it will be used for decades requiring further development, support and production.

Lockheed is the current contractor for the SPY-1 through acquiring Martin Marietta who had purchased the original developer and producer, General Electric (GE), defense work in this area.

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General Dynamics Acquires Open Kernel Labs, Inc. — Press Release

FALLS CHURCH, Va., Sept. 10, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — General Dynamics (NYSE: GD) has acquired Open Kernel Labs, Inc. (OK Labs), expanding its capabilities as a provider of secure mobile devices for public safety, civilian, military and commercial customers as well as in-vehicle infotainment systems (IVI) for the commercial market. OK Labs, a Chicago-based, privately held corporation, is a leading provider of virtualization software for securing wireless communications, applications and content for mobile devices and automotive in-vehicle infotainment systems. The value of the cash transaction has not been disclosed.

OK Labs will become part of General Dynamics Broadband, a subsidiary of General Dynamics C4 Systems. This transaction enhances General Dynamics’ ability to meet growing government and military needs for secure computing on commercial handheld devices.

OK Labs’ “Defense-Grade” solutions for commercial devices enable secure separation of corporate data and applications from a user’s personal data stored or accessed on the same device. This feature broadens General Dynamics’ range of device offerings in the expanding public-safety broadband market and mobile device markets, and complements General Dynamics’ 40-year history of providing encryption technology to protect voice and data communications classified up to the Top Secret level.

“Government and corporate CIOs want the advantages of today’s commercial mobile devices without having to sacrifice the integrity and security of their networks,” said Chris Marzilli, president of General Dynamics C4 Systems. “OK Labs’ market-leading expertise in implementing security on commercial devices delivers ease of use and reduced cost to customers.”

OK Labs’ software is deployed on more than 1.6 billion government and commercial devices worldwide. Their technology supports a “bring-your-own-device” environment, allowing smart phones and other portable computing devices to be securely used for personal and business applications simultaneously. OK Labs’ solutions also make it easier for engineers to design, deploy and maintain software for these platforms.

OK Labs also provides automotive virtualization solutions by enabling the separation of dashboard applications (multimedia, infotainment) from core automotive functions without compromising safety, security or reliability.

More information about General Dynamics Broadband is available at www.gd-broadband.com.

General Dynamics C4 Systems (www.gdc4s.com) designs, manufacturers and delivers trusted and secure communications systems, command and control systems and operational hardware to customers within the U.S. Department of Defense, federal and civilian agencies, the intelligence community and international customers.

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Navistar Decides Not To Go Ahead with JLTV Protest

It is now being reported that Navistar (NAV) will not pursue its protest of the JLTV EMD contracts awarded almost two weeks ago. They did this after Labor Day.

The three Engineering, Manufacturing and Development (EMD) contracts were awarded three weeks ago. They were given to AM General, Lockheed Martin (LMT) and Oshkosh. The Navistar and General Dynamics (GD) proposals did not win.

Navistar had protested right at the end of the window to do so and after receiving their debrief from the Army. By doing this it placed the execution of the contracts on hold until the protest was resolved.

It looks like Navistar filed the protest to make sure they hit the window. After reviewing more information they decided to withdraw it. There has still been no indications that GD will go ahead with one.

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Royal Air Force Shadow R1 fleet achieves 10,000th operational flight hour — Press Release

Gama Group, the global business aviation service provider, celebrates the significant achievement of the Royal Air Force’s Shadow R1 special mission fleet’s 10,000th operational flight hour.

Gama Support Services Ltd, a Gama Group company, was happy to attend yesterday’s ceremony held at RAF Waddington by the RAF’s No.14 Squadron, to mark its achievement of its Shadow R1 aircraft fleet’s milestone.

Wing Commander Rich Moir, Officer Commanding 14 Squadron, said:

“Marking the 10,000th operational hour for the Shadow R1 is very important as it is a significant milestone, and stands as testament to the hard work, dedication and determination of all those associated with the success of this unique platform.
Since it was first introduced into service it has had an outstanding serviceability rate and delivered consistently in the skies over Afghanistan. It is an achievement that all associated with the project should be very proud of.”

The Shadow R1 is one of a number of platforms Gama supports. As well as providing UK-based support and logistics supply, Gama provides service engineering teams and supply chains to support the platform around the world.

Gama’s contribution as a member of the Shadow Team headed by Special Project Multi Air Platform Project Team, was recognised earlier this year with the award of a Chief of Defence Materiel’s (CDM) Commendation in recognition of exceptional support to the Royal Air Force and its Shadow R1 special mission fleet in particular.

In addition to the provision of maintenance support both in the UK and overseas, Gama has also been recently appointed to provide specialist training for RAF engineering personnel.

“We appreciate the confidence the MOD have placed in the Gama team in supporting Shadow R1 operations,” said Paul Bristow, Engineering Director, Gama Support Services. “We are committed to expanding our support for the MOD as and when requested, in what we appreciate are particularly challenging operational circumstances and are proud to have the RAF team engineers working under our maintenance approvals as an integral part of the Gama team at our home base of Farnborough and overseas in support of the Shadow Program.”

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More Missile Defense Work for Raytheon

As the Fiscal Year 2012 comes to an end contracts continue to be awarded although they should dry up as the government moves to begin closing out the books on this year and begin executing next year’s budget. FY 2013 looks to start with an extended Continuing Resolution Authority (CRA) which could limit what can be done with available funds.

One program that has had steady awards is Raytheon’s (RTN) work producing the SM-3 missile for the U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA). The SM-3 is part of the ship based AEGIS system and is optimized to engage enemy ballistic missiles. Further versions are being developed to deal with more complicated and longer range threats but the SM-3 has been tested several times in Hawaii and is equipping the U.S. and Japanese AEGIS ships.

The most recent award was for 19 missiles and has a value of over $200 million. This follows a contract awarded in July worth almost a billion dollars for development effort for a new version of the missile.

Raytheon is building a new facility in Huntsville, AL to produce the SM-3 missiles.

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Navistar Reportedly Files Protest of JLTV EMD Contract Awards

Two weeks ago the Army awarded 3 contracts for further efforts on the HUMVEE replacement, the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV). The proposals from Lockheed Martin (LMT), Oshkosh (OSK) and AM General were selected. The Navistar and General Dynamic (GD) ones were not. The value of these contracts were between $55-65 million and are for the first year of a two to three year process to build and test prototypes. At the end of this one will be chosen to go into production.

The JLTV program has the potential to be quite large as the estimated quantities are in the tens of thousands. The current cost estimate for production is about $13 billion. This does not take into account future support and parts contracts as well as the potential for foreign and direct military sales to U.S. allies.

It has now come out that Navistar filed a protest late Friday near the end of the ten day period. The losers were supposedly briefed on Thursday as to why their proposals were not chosen.

The filing of the protest means the contracts cannot be executed until it is resolved. The General Accountability Office (GAO) has 100 days to do this. The result could be an overturning of the awards and direction to do a new contest or directing the Army to review its selection process. In some cases the GAO has awarded the protester the contract over the winner.

As the defense budget shrinks and contracts become more valuable to the different defense contractors protests should increase. This was the trend in the Nineties when there was the last major contraction in U.S. spending.

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3M Hearing Protection Devices Now Added to the Federal Procurement List; Agreement Between New Dynamics Corp. and 3M Brings Jobs to People with Disabilities — Press Release

September 2, 2012 by · Comment
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Events, logistics, Press Releases 

ST. PAUL, Minn., Aug. 30, 2012 — Five hearing protection devices from 3M have been added to the U.S. AbilityOne Commission’s Federal Procurement List (FPL), effective Sept. 3, 2012, to help military personnel who are often exposed to excessive noise levels. 3M has a strong commitment to hearing conservation and will work with New Dynamics Corporation to protect warriors and workers from noise-induced hearing loss. As part of a co-branding agreement, New Dynamics Corporation will assemble, package and distribute the 3M devices through its government and commercial contracts, providing employment opportunities for more than 20 employees with and without disabilities.

“Military personnel are exposed to excessive noise levels during combat and training on a variety of land, air and sea missions,” said Walter Pawlowski, vice president of Business Development, New Dynamics Corporation. “This noise exposure has led many personnel to experience hearing loss and tinnitus, which is currently the number-one service-related disability for veterans.”

Tinnitus, often referred to as “ringing in the ears,” and noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by a one-time exposure to hazardous impulse noise, or by repeated exposure to excessive noise over an extended period of time.

The hearing protection devices being added to the federal procurement list include a series of 3M Combat Arms Earplugs and the 3M E-A-R Yellow Skull Screws earplugs. Combat Arms Earplugs provide hear-through capabilities, which enable military personnel to hear low-level sounds, such as footsteps or spoken commands, while protecting against damaging impulse noise from explosions or firearms. Yellow Skull Screws earplugs provide high-attenuation, easy insertion and compliance with Foreign Objects and Debris (FOD) requirements in proximity with military aircraft and flight lines.

The Combat Arms Earplug is made of a washable plastic, has a triple-flange eartip to keep it in place, and features a rocker switch that is operated without removing the earplug. Military personnel can adjust the rocker with a quick “click” depending on the type of protection required for the mission. When it’s in the open or “weapons fire” position, sound can travel through the sound channel filter into the ear. For noisy environments that don’t require a hear-through listening capability, such as being near helicopters, troop carriers or generators, the rocker can be closed for “constant protection.”

The 3M products were added to the procurement list by the U.S. AbilityOne Commission, which was established as an independent Federal agency by the Javits-Wagner-O’Day Act. The Commission administers the AbilityOne Program, which currently provides employment opportunities for more than 50,000 people who are blind or have significant disabilities. The AbilityOne Program uses the purchasing power of the federal government to buy products and services from nonprofit agencies nationwide dedicated to training and employing individuals with disabilities.

New Dynamics Corporation works closely with NISH, a national nonprofit agency whose mission is to create employment opportunities for people with significant disabilities by securing federal contracts through the AbilityOne Program.

“People with disabilities are the nation’s largest untapped labor force and nearly 80 percent of these individuals do not have jobs,” said NISH President and CEO Bob Chamberlin. “It is our mission to help secure work for people with disabilities, and it is particularly fitting that we work with New Dynamics and 3M as their hearing protection products and services can help reduce the number of hearing-related disabilities within the military and other at-risk populations.”

Beginning Sept. 3, 2012, the products and services listed below are suitable for procurement by the Federal Government under 41 U.S.C. 8501-8506 and 41 CFR 51-2.4. National Stock Numbers (NSNs):

NSN: 6515-01-576-8837 – Combat Arms Earplug, Single Ended, Size Small
NSN: 6515-01-576-8861 – Combat Arms Earplug, Single Ended, Size Medium
NSN: 6515-01-576-8869 – Combat Arms Earplug, Single Ended, Size Large
NSN: 6515-01-466-2710 – Combat Arms Earplug, Dual Ended, Universal Size.
NSN: 6515-01-576-8796 – Yellow Skull Screws Earplug, Single Ended,
Universal Size

“3M has 40 years of experience developing innovative hearing protection products,” said Doug Moses, Military Market Development, Occupational Health & Environmental Safety, 3M. “We look forward to applying our rich history with hearing protection products in support of New Dynamics and NISH to equip the U.S. Armed Forces with devices that allow them to hear mission-critical communication, while helping reduce the risk of developing tinnitus and noise-induced hearing loss.”

3M, Combat Arms, E-A-R, and Skull Screws are trademarks of 3M Company, used under license in Canada. AbilityOne is a registered trademark of the U.S. AbilityOne Commission.

About 3M

3M captures the spark of new ideas and transforms them into thousands of ingenious products. Our culture of creative collaboration inspires a never-ending stream of powerful technologies that make life better. 3M is the innovation company that never stops inventing. With $30 billion in sales, 3M employs about 84,000 people worldwide and has operations in more than 65 countries. For more information, visit www.3M.com or follow @3MNews on Twitter.

About 3M Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Safety Solutions

3M offers a comprehensive, diverse portfolio of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) solutions providing respiratory protection, hearing protection, fall protection, reflective materials for high visibility, protective clothing, protective eyewear, head and face protection, welding helmets, and other adjacent products and solutions such as tactical safety equipment, detection, monitoring equipment, active communications equipment and compliance management. In 2012, 3M celebrates 40 years of safety leadership, recognizing the company’s respiratory and hearing protection solutions introduced in 1972. Visit www.3M.com/PPESafety or m.3M.com/PPESafety.

New Dynamics Corporation, based in Middletown, N.Y., provides employment opportunities for more than 70 disabled and non-disabled employees through its government and commercial contracts for products and services. Formed in 1997, New Dynamics is a not-for-profit sister corporation of Occupations Inc. that manufactures, packages and distributes products and services commercially and to the federal government through the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) and the Defense Logistics Agency.

NISH is a national nonprofit agency whose mission is to create employment opportunities for people with significant disabilities by securing federal contracts through the AbilityOne Program for its network of community-based, nonprofit agencies. Providing employment opportunities to more than 50,000 people, the AbilityOne Program is the largest single source of employment for people with disabilities in the United States. More than 600 participating nonprofit organizations employ these individuals and provide quality goods and services to the federal government at a fair price.

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