The Aerospace Industries Association is warning policymakers that the US civil aviation sector is in urgent need of support. "If the commercial side doesn't get some relief, you are going to see companies in the supply chain go out of business, and that will impact the defense side," said Eric Fanning, AIA president and CEO.
Will Roper, top acquisition official for the Air Force, says follow-on iterations of the Boeing KC-46 tanker aircraft "take us all the way up to the doorstep of semi-autonomous and autonomous tanking."
BAE Systems is working toward a "Factory of the Future" that will greatly reduce the time it takes to produce aviation components. "We're looking to reduce our engineering and manufacturing processes lead times and cost by half and that will result in a significant increase in our productivity," BAE's Andy Schofield said.
With more than 260 Bell 505 Jet Ranger X helicopters operational worldwide, the model has reached the 50,000 flight hour milestone. "This milestone represents the platform's global growth and adoption as it enables operators to complete dynamic missions at an affordable cost," said Bell light aircraft program director Eric Sinusas.
Two Air Force programs are advancing the development of satellites using computer generated models, a first says acquisition chief Will Roper. "What I'm asking the two programs that are working on potential e-sats is to get rid of the hard, expensive or otherwise difficult things," he said.
Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Roger Wicker, R-Miss., have introduced a bill to extend support for the airline industry, with $28 billion in funding through March of next year. "Maintaining a strong national air transportation system is critical for today’s economy and the continued recovery," Wicker said.
NASA has requested $3.2 billion in its 2021 budget for the Human Landing System program, part of the Artemis moon mission. NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine says providing the funding now will equate to future savings.
Defense Secretary Mark Esper says the strong military ties between the US and Israel will not change, should the US opt to sell F-35 fighter jets to the United Arab Emirates. "We will continue to support the longstanding US policy to maintain Israel's security," he said.
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