Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Some Naval and Marine Aviation News, Including UCLASS, From DOD Authorization Act

Here's a short list:

1.  6 Additional F-35Bs for the US Marine Corps, bring their total for 2016 to 15.

2.  12 Additional F-18Es for the US Navy.

3.  An additional MQ-4C Triton.

4.  $350 million for UCLASS (navy asked for $135M).   Up to $305M may be used for competitive prototyping and at least some of it is supposed to be used for the X-49B testing to reduce the risk of UCLASS.  The committee also said:

“The conferees believe that the Navy should develop a penetrating, air-refuelable, unmanned carrier-launched aircraft capable of performing a broad range of missions in a non- permissive environment. The conferees believe that such an aircraft should be designed for full integration into carrier air wing operations—including strike operations—and possess the range, payload, and survivability attributes as necessary to complement such integration,” according to the statement.

“Although the Defense Department could develop land-based unmanned aircraft with attributes to support the air wing, the conferees believe that the United States would derive substantial strategic and operational benefits from operating such aircraft from a mobile seabase that is self-deployable and not subject to the caveats of a host nation.”

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