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September 4 Weekly Defense Industry Roundup

Posted by Fred Wellman

Navistar Files Protest, JLTV Program Comes to Halt

Paul McLeary, Defense News. Late Friday afternoon Navistar filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office on the Army selections for the three Engineering, Manufacturing and Development contract award winners, which they lost to Lockheed Martin, AM General and Oshkosh Defense. The company stated that after receiving the debrief from the Army on the award they have asked for a review. The other losing teams including Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems have not stated their intentions to protest or not. This places the contract on hold while the GAO reviews the process and makes a recommendation. There is little surprise in the protest as nearly everyone in the industry expected this contract to be protested as nearly all defense programs are today.

U.S. Arms Sales Nearly Triple in 2011, Researchers Say

Agence France-Presse. A report from the Congressional Research Service has found that the Foreign Military Sales program had its biggest year ever in 2011 with some $66.3 billion in transfers marking some 80% of world weapons exports. Significant contracts included the $29.4 billion sale of F-15’s to Saudi Arabia among others and may be a one-year anomaly due to the nature of those programs. Global arms sales are said to have grown to $85.3 billion.

Outcome of Three Programs Will Drive Defense Sector Consolidation

Loren Thompson, Forbes. Well-known defense analyst Loren Thompson writes that three major programs will dominate the shape of the defense industry in the future. The F-35 fighter, the Next Generation Jammer and the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle programs have a mixture of major and mid-tier players that depending on the outcomes of the efforts will see more than a few possibly being bought up or going out of business entirely in the coming decade. Much of what Thompson says has been talked about elsewhere but his focus on these three specific efforts is accurate as they dominate their specific sectors for the services like no others. Coming in close behind will be the Marine Corps new amphibious vehicle, the Army’s Ground Combat Vehicle and the communications network that is still being developed for the ground force as well.

New High-Tech Airships Are Rising in Southern California

W.J. Hennigan, Los Angeles Times. In an interesting development in the aerospace industry airships are once again being built and tested for missions in support of military operations in numbers not seen since the Hindenburg exploded in Lakehurst, New Jersey. The military has recognized a need for systems that can stay aloft for long periods with minimum fuel and the ability to carry loads varying from surveillance packages to huge amounts of cargo. Worldwide Aeros Corp. is building what they call a revolution in the design with its massive 265-foot Aeroscraft, which will carry cargo anywhere in the world with a skeleton made of aluminum and carbon fiber that they hope to have in the air by next year. Just last month Northrop Grumman made news with the first flight of its Long Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle over New Jersey that will provide battlefield surveillance for over 21 days at a time. It’s an interesting time to be a flying buff.

Could Defense Cuts Impact Security on the Homefront?

John Grady, ScoutComms. While everyone has been focused on the impact of sequestration cuts on the defense industry and active duty military an aspect getting less attention is the effect they will have on homeland security and disaster response.  ScoutComms special correspondent John Grady has taken a look at how so called Title 32 funds will be hit by sequestration and the effect it will have on the National Guard’s ability to respond to natural disasters and homeland defense missions. The bottom line is that if Title 32 gets spared then there will be even deeper cuts to the active force…and if it isn’t spared then a deployment like the 50,000 troop strong response to Hurricane Katrina seven years ago will be impossible to manage next year.

The week ahead:

Tradeshows and Conferences:  No significant tradeshows or conferences we are aware of this week, however, next week kicks off the military trade show season that will continue through November.

Congress:   The full Congress is not in session this week with the August recess and will not return until September 10th.

Think tanks and other news events: 

Center for National Policy: Special Operations and the Future of American Foreign Policy Washington, DC (12:00 PM, Tues 4 Sept) Description: From the toppling of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan to the 2011 raid that killed Osama bin Laden, special operations have taken on a new prominence in American foreign policy in the 21st Century. It appears that America’s reliance on special operations forces will only increase in the coming decade. This panel will discuss the political and strategic implications. RSVP online. Participants: Major Fernando Lujan, United States Army, Visiting Fellow at the Center for a New American Security, Colonel David Maxwell (ret.), Associate Director of the Center for Security Studies, Georgetown University, Sean Naylor, Army Times senior writer Location: Center for National Policy, One Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Suite 333, Washington, DC 20001

News in Defense Media:

Congratulations is deserved for veteran defense journalist Carl Prine who won the American Legion’s 4th Estate Award this week for his investigative reporting with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. Carl won for his series called “Wounded Warriors” from February of 2011 that focused on problems in the Warrior Transition Units where service members leaving the military for medical reasons are assigned for care.

Fred Wellman with General Petraeus in Iraq

Fred Wellman, President ScoutComms, brings us his weekly review of defense industry news via The Scout Report. Fred served over twenty years as an Army officer in both aviation and public affairs. You can follow Fred on Twitter @ScoutComms.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, September 04, 2012 8:41 am

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