GAO upholds Boeings protest of tanker award by wulinqing


									                                           GAO upholds Boeings protest
                                                of tanker award
Nation’s first Littoral
Combat Ship lights off
gas turbine engines
in preparation for sea
trials........................... Page 3
Aegis ballistic missile
defense weapon system
destroys ballistic missile
in terminal
phase ........................... Page 4
General Atomics built
Sky Warriors deploy to
Iraq ............................ Page 5
NASA tests lunar
robots, spacesuits on
moonscape ............ Page 8
NASA, ATK conduct
first launch abort
system igniter test for
Orion ......................... Page 9
Air turbulence research
could lead to safer
flights ....................... Page 10
Viewpoint: VA tries to
block voter
registration ........... Page 15

   June 20, 2008
Volume 23, Issue 20
   Serving the aerospace
    industry since 1986                                           See Page 3
Raytheon delivers 1,000th Tomahawk Block IV                                    flex the missile in flight to preprogrammed alternate targets or redirect          In its protest, AAII was challenging the selection of Boeing over
  Raytheon achieved a significant production milestone with the                 it to a new target. This targeting flexibility includes the capability to      AAII for a billion dollar contract to maintain the Air Force’s fleet
delivery of the 1,000th Tomahawk Block IV cruise missile to the                loiter over the battlefield and await a more critical target.                  of KC-135 tankers. As recently as Dec. 27, 2007, and Feb. 1, 2008,
U.S. Navy.                                                                         “The Tomahawk program continues to evolve to provide the U.S.             the GAO had issued decisions finding that the Air Force’s selection
  “Tomahawk Block IV provides the Navy with an array of en-                    Navy with the capability to project precision firepower across the             of Boeing was flawed.
hanced capabilities to support land-based operations in the global             breadth and depth of the battlespace,” said Harry Schulte, vice presi-           “While we are disappointed with the GAO’s latest decision, we
war on terror and across the spectrum of warfare,” said Capt. Rick             dent of Raytheon’s Air Warfare Systems product line. “The delivery            fully intend to continue to press our case until the Air Force has con-
McQueen, the U.S. Navy’s program manager for the Tomahawk                      of the 1,000th Tomahawk Block IV missile builds on Raytheon’s                 ducted a full and fair evaluation of proposals,” said AAII President
weapon system. “The Navy’s receipt of this 1,000th Tomahawk                    continued leadership in providing the warfighter with innovative               Ron Aramini. “We believe that a proper evaluation would result in
Block IV builds on a legacy of providing the commander with a                  systems that set the standard in precision strike capabilities.”              the selection of AAII as the highest quality and lowest cost source
powerful weapon to shape the battlespace.”                                                                                                                   for the maintenance of the Air Force’s KC-135 fleet.”
  Tomahawk Block IV’s innovative technologies provide an ex-                   GAO denies AAII protest                                                          Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc., with executive offices in Bir-
panded array of operational capabilities while dramatically reducing             Alabama Aircraft Industries, Inc., has announced that the U.S.              mingham, Ala., and facilities in Alabama and California, performs
acquisition, operations and support costs. Tomahawk Block IV em-               Government Accountability Office denied a protest filed by the                  maintenance and modification of aircraft for the U.S. government
ploys a two-way satellite data link that enables a strike controller to        company March 11, 2008.                                                       and foreign and domestic commercial customers.

    Boeing delivers 6th C-17 to Royal Air Force
       Boeing delivered the United Kingdom’s sixth      around the world.”
    C-17 Globemaster III to the Royal Air Force June       The C-17 will operate out of RAF base Brize
    11 during a ceremony at the company’s Long          Norton near London, home of the Strategic Air
    Beach, Calif., C-17 manufacturing facility.         Transport and Air-to-Air Refueling forces, and
       The delivery completes the RAF’s initial or-     will provide critical airlift capability for the Joint
    der for the world’s most advanced airlifter.        Rapid Reaction Force.
       “We congratulate you not only on the acquisi-       “Whether our C-17s are serving in combat
    tion of your sixth C-17 Globemaster III, but also   or on humanitarian missions, we know they are
    for the amazing accomplishments you’ve had          often the difference between life and death,”
    over the past seven years with the five already in   said Air Vice-Marshal Kevin Leeson, Assistant
    your fleet,” said Jean Chamberlin, Boeing vice       Chief of the Defence Staff for Logistic Opera-
    president and C-17 program manager. “The            tions. “You’ve built a remarkable airlifter that
    RAF has repeatedly demonstrated the C-17’s          means so much to British military personnel as
    advanced capabilities in support of U.K. opera-     they transit to and from operational theaters and                                                                                        Boeing photograph by Gina L. Vanatter
    tions in Iraq and Afghanistan, and by providing     to those in desperate need of humanitarian aid in        With the June 11 delivery, there are nearly 190 operational C-17s worldwide - 173 with the U.S. Air Force;
    critical humanitarian aid in numerous locations     remote, hard-to-access sites around the world.”          six with the Royal Air Force; four with the Royal Australian Air Force and four with the Canadian Forces.

2                                                                                                                                                                                                           June 20, 2008
Boeing wins big in tanker protest
by Jennifer Vollmer
staff writer

   A landmark decision by the Govern-
ment Accountability Office could mean
the highly publicized U.S. Air Force
tanker deal could be thrown back to
the bidding process.
   The GAO decided June 18 to sustain
several key issues in Boeing’s protest
of the $35-billion procurement pro-
gram that was awarded to Northrop
Grumman in February.
   Boeing filed their initial protest
March 11, about two weeks after the
Air Force announced their decision to
award the contract to Northrop Grum-
man. Boeing filed numerous append-
ages to their initial protest, according
to the GAO, but the government watch-
dog decided only a handful of the com-
plaints had legal bearing.
   “Our review of the record led us to
conclude that the Air Force has made a
number of significant errors that could
have affected the outcome of what was
a close competition between Boeing
and Northrop Grumman,” said Mi-
chael R. Golden, the GAO’s managing
associate general for procurement law.
“We also denied a number of Boeing’s
challenges to the award to Northrop
Grumman, because we found that the
record did not provide us with a basis
to conclude that the agency had violat-                                                                                                                                                                         Boeing photograph
ed the legal requirements with respect
to those challenges.”                       Boeing delivers the second KC-767 tanker to Japan earlier this year.
   The report stated that the Air Force
conducted “misleading” and “unequal”        we will provide the Air Force’s way          protecting our nation’s warfighter and        their aging fleet of KC-135s has been        doing so would be a mistake. Beverly
communications with Boeing prior to         ahead,” she said.                            industrial base.”                            in the works since the beginning of the     Wyse, Boeing’s 767 commercial pro-
the final award submissions and that            The Air Force has 60 days to respond         One of the major contentions sev-         decade.                                     gram manager, told Reuters that such
the Air Force improperly gave extra         to the recommendations but the service       eral politicians have had is that the air-      In 2002, the Air Force thought they      a move would essentially double the
points to Northrop Grumman for pro-         is not required by law to adhere to the      frame of the Northrop Grumman tanker         had a viable solution for replacing the     military’s bill for training, maintenance
posing a larger aircraft that could carry   GAO’s recommendations. Several poli-         is built by French company Airbus.           tankers. Air Force officials planned to      and logistics.
a higher payload.                           ticians on Capitol Hill have promised        Northrop Grumman has stated repeat-          lease or buy 100 tankers from Boeing           A study performed by a former Pen-
   The GAO advised the Air Force to         to stop funding of the project if the con-   edly that the majority of the aircraft       in a $23.5 billion contract but can-        tagon official regarding the airframes
amend their original solicitation, re-      tract is not re-opened.                      will be American made, more than 60          celed it after finding out that Boeing       showed otherwise. According to former
open the competition, obtain new pro-          Kansas Republicans Senator Pat            percent according to Northrop Grum-          arranged to hire the Air Force official      Pentagon acquisition chief Jacques Gan-
posals and make a new source selec-         Roberts and Congressman Todd Tiahrt          man, but Boeing and union workers            who handled the contracting deal. Two       sler, who performed the study, the govern-
tion decision. The GAO also said that       said they plan to introduce legislation      have said that American jobs will be         Boeing officials were jailed because of      ment could save as much as 30 percent
if Boeing is selected during a re-bid,      requiring the Air Force to re-compete        lost if the contract is upheld.              the scandal and former Air Force Sec-       over the life of the contract if the Air Force
the Air Force should terminate its con-     the contract and Sen. Maria Cantwell,           Expectedly, Boeing said they are          retary James Roche resigned.                splits the deal between Northrop Grum-
tract with Northrop Grumman and pay         D-Wash., called upon Congress to in-         happy the GAO decided to uphold                 Now, five years later, as the protest     man’s team and Boeing.
Boeing’s legal fees that were incurred      vestigate future defense contracts.          the protest. “We welcome and sup-            is upheld, some politicians are saying         Both Boeing and Northrop Grum-
in pursuit of the protest.                     “Boeing and the American people           port today’s ruling by the GAO fully         Boeing’s desire to win the contract is at   man have landed contracts to produce
   Air Force acquisition official Sue       are the big winners in this decision,”       sustaining the grounds of our protest,”      the cost of the warfighter. Sen. Richard     their refuelers for other countries, but
Payton said the Air Force will do ev-       said Cantwell. “Congress needs to in-        said Mark McGraw, vice president for         Shelby, R-Ala., said it is disturbing the   none is as large as the U.S. order.
erything they can to rapidly move for-      vestigate the way in which our federal       Boeing Tanker Programs.                      Air Force “will likely have to go back         Italy and Japan have each promised
ward, but did not say that the service      agencies award contracts and ensure             Northrop Grumman said they ap-            to square one on the warfighter’s No.        to purchase four of Boeing’s KC-767.
will reopen the bidding process.            taxpayer costs and national security is-     preciate the GAO’s work but they con-        1 priority.”                                The United Kingdom’s Royal Air
   “The Air Force will select the best      sues are paramount in all procurement        tinue to believe that they offered the          In 2007, there was talk about the        Force, the Royal Austrian Air Force,
value tanker for our nation’s defense,      decisions ... Congress will continue to      most modern and capable tanker for the       tanker program being split between the      Saudi Arabia and the United Arab
while being good stewards of the            work on this and I’m pleased that the        American warfighter.                          competitors, but according to Reuters,      Emirates have ordered the Northrop
taxpayer dollar. As soon as possible,       GAO recognized the importance of                The Air Force’s intention to replace      both the Air Force and Boeing say that      Grumman KC-35.

Nation’s first Littoral Combat Ship lights off gas turbine engines
   The nation’s first Littoral Combat Ship, Freedom (LCS 1), has           Navy in 2008 and will be homeported in San Diego.                         required to support Freedom’s operations at sea. In addition, the
successfully completed another testing milestone with the “light             “The light off of the gas turbines is a significant milestone for       power quality was closely evaluated to ensure all ship systems
off” of the new warship’s twin gas turbine propulsion engines as it       both Lockheed Martin and the Navy in the life of Freedom and              and sensors requiring electrical power could operate effectively
undergoes final preparation for sea trials. The first ship in its class,    the LCS program,” said Dan Schultz, vice president and general            marking a significant milestone for Freedom as her electric plant
the agile, 378-foot Freedom was designed and built by a Lockheed          manager of Lockheed Martin’s Maritime Security & Ship Systems             is completely functional and able to support all tests, evaluations
Martin [NYSE: LMT]-led industry team to assist the U.S. Navy in           business. “This milestone brings the team another step closer to          and operations at sea.
future littoral - or close-to-shore - operations.                         delivering this much needed capability to the Navy and the warf-             The Lockheed Martin team’s design for LCS is a survivable,
   Freedom is powered by an innovative combined diesel and gas            ighter.”                                                                  semi-planing steel monohull that provides outstanding maneuver-
turbine propulsion plant, with steerable water jet propulsion. The           With construction on Freedom essentially complete, the dock-           ability with proven sea-keeping characteristics to support launch
two Rolls-Royce MT30 gas turbines are the largest and most power-         side final tests of the ship’s systems continue. In February, LCS          and recovery operations, mission execution and optimum crew com-
ful ever installed on a Navy ship - rated at 36 megawatts or 48,000       1’s four 750-kilowatt Fincantieri Isotta Fraschini diesel genera-         fort. Team members also include naval architect Gibbs & Cox,
horsepower each. They will allow LCS 1 to sustain sprint speeds           tors were “lit off” and its three-megawatt electrical power plant         ship builders Marinette Marine, a subsidiary of The Manitowoc
over 40 knots. Over the next few weeks, dock-side testing of the          was successfully tested, loading each generator to its full-power         Company, Inc., and Bollinger Shipyards, as well as best-of-industry
ship’s engines and other systems will continue at Marinette Marine        capacity. Further testing included synchronizing - or “paralleling”       domestic and international teammates to provide a flexible, low-risk
prior to open water trials. Freedom will be delivered to the U.S.         in shipbuilding terms - the generators to attain the power levels         war fighting solution.

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                                3
Aegis ballistic missile defense weapon system
destroys ballistic missile in terminal phase
   Lockheed Martin’s Aegis Ballistic Missile                 In addition to the terminal phase successes,       system that provides protection to population          its first successful test of Aegis BMD in Decem-
Defense Weapon System successfully detected,              Aegis BMD has 12 successful exo-atmospheric           centers, our deployed forces abroad, and critical      ber 2007.
tracked and intercepted a short- range unitary bal-       intercepts in 14 attempts in the midcourse phase      infrastructure.”                                          The Aegis Weapon System is currently de-
listic missile target in the terminal phase of its        of flight. Separate from the ballistic missile de-        The Missile Defense Agency and the U.S. Navy        ployed on 85 ships around the globe with more
trajectory during a test today at the Pacific Missile      fense tests, USS Lake Erie’s Aegis BMD Weapon         are jointly developing Aegis BMD as part of the        than 20 additional ships planned or under con-
Range off the coast of Hawaii.                            System was temporarily modified and success-           United States’ Ballistic Missile Defense System        tract. In addition to the U.S., Aegis is the mari-
   This mission was the first to use the latest ver-       fully destroyed an errant United States satellite     (BMDS). Currently, 12 U.S. Navy Aegis-equipped         time weapon system of choice for Japan, South
sion of the Aegis BMD weapon system - Aegis               in February.                                          warships have the ability to conduct long-range        Korea, Norway, Spain and Australia.
BMD 3.6.1. - which adds to the proven sea-based              “Ballistic missiles present different challenges   search and track, and engage ballistic missiles.          Lockheed Martin is a world leader in systems
missile defense system the capability to defeat           during each phase of flight, and Aegis BMD is          Another five Aegis warships are equipped with           integration and the development of air and missile
short-range ballistic missiles, that have re-entered      proving its full range of flexibility,” said Orlando   Aegis BMD long-range surveillance and track ca-        defense systems and technologies, including the
the atmosphere in their final stage of flight. The          Carvalho, vice president of Lockheed Martin’s         pability. By the end of 2008, 15 Aegis destroyers      first operational hit-to-kill missile defense system,
system will be certified for U.S. Navy fleet opera-         Surface/Sea-Based Missile Defense line of busi-       and three Aegis cruisers will have the capability to   Patriot Advanced Capability-3. It also has consid-
tions later this year.                                    ness. “That flexibility reflects the disciplined      engage short to intermediate-range ballistic mis-      erable experience in interceptor systems, kill ve-
   In the test mission, the SPY-1B radar on the           systems engineering that invented, evolved and        sile threats and support other BMDS engagements        hicles, battle management command, control and
Aegis BMD cruiser USS Lake Erie detected and              continues to develop Aegis capabilities against       using the Aegis BMD Weapon System and the              communications, precision pointing and tracking
tracked the ballistic missile target, and computed        threats yet to come. Engaging ballistic missiles      SM-3. The Aegis BMD 3.6.1 tested today will            optics, as well as radar and other sensors that enable
a targeting solution to guide two SM-2 Block IV           from the sea in the terminal phase is challenging     be installed on all U.S. Navy Aegis BMD ships          signal processing and data fusion. The company
missiles to a successful endo-atmospheric (within         for both the Sailors who executed this mission and    beginning in 2009.                                     makes significant contributions to nearly all major
the atmosphere) intercept. Once the SM-2s were            the weapon system they used. Sea-Based Terminal          Japan has purchased Aegis BMD capability for        U.S. Missile Defense Systems and participates in
launched from the ship’s Lockheed Martin-devel-           is a critical capability in the Aegis BMD weapon      its Kongo-class Aegis destroyers, and completed        several global missile defense partnerships.
oped MK-41 Vertical Launching System, Aegis
guided the missiles through the terminal phase of
the intercept. The SM-2 Block IV missiles were            Raytheon awarded $63 million for airborne low frequency sonar
recently modified to perform the terminal phase
                                                             Raytheon Company has received a $63.4 million U.S. Navy contract for           Raytheon Integrated Defense Systems’ (IDS) Charles “Tom” Bush, vice
endo-atmospheric intercept of a ballistic missile.
   While this event marked the first test in the Mis-      AN/AQS-22 Airborne Low Frequency Sonar, the primary undersea warfare              president of Seapower Capability Systems. “ALFS is a tested and proven
sile Defense Agency’s evaluation of Aegis BMD             sensor for the U.S. Navy’s MH-60R multi-mission helicopter.                       asset and the cornerstone of the fleet’s anti-submarine warfare operational
against a ballistic missile in its terminal phase, this      AN/AQS-22 provides critical undersea warfare mission support capa-             strategy.”
is the second Aegis success in the terminal phase.        bilities, including submarine detection, tracking, localization, classification,      Under the contract, IDS will manufacture, integrate, test and deliver 15
In May 2006, the USS Lake Erie successfully inter-        acoustic intercept, underwater communication, and environmental data col-         new ALFS systems, as well as provide miscellaneous “weapons replaceable
cepted a short-range ballistic missile in its terminal    lection.                                                                          assemblies for unit under test” and air maintenance trainer assets.
phase in a Navy-sponsored test using a version of            “The award confirms the Navy’s commitment to ALFS and the system’s
the Linebacker Program first developed in 1998.            contribution to advancing the fleet’s undersea warfare capabilities,” said                                                                See RAYTHEON Page 6

4                                                                                                                                                                                                June 20, 2008
General Atomics built Sky Warriors deploy to Iraq
by Jennifer Vollmer                         unmanned aerial vehicles. It can also        tardiness of defense acquisition proj-    lif. According to company officials, the    of the year.
staff writer                                carry twice as many weapons as the           ects. According to the report, Acquisi-   aircraft achieved all stated objectives       General Atomics is also developing
                                            Predator.                                    tion programs are running an average      for the 26.5-hour flight, and fuel en-      a second generation of Sky Warrior.
   The Army recently deployed two of           General Atomics released the vehicle      of 21 months behind schedule and 14       durance calculations were better than      According to the company, 17 of the
their newest unmanned aerial vehicles       for deployment more than a year in ad-       percent are being delivered more than     expected.                                  newer version, dubbed the “Sky War-
according the aircraft’s manufacturer       vance of the Army’s Systems Develop-         four years overdue.                           The Army has ordered a total of sev-   rior Block 1,” will be produced. Four
General Atomics Aeronautical Sys-           ment and Demonstration deployment               Prior to deploying the aircraft to     en Sky Warrior Block 0 aircraft, with      are scheduled to be deployed and the
tems.                                       requirements for the program.                Iraq, General Atomics performed en-       the balance expected to join the first      remaining nine aircraft will serve as
   “Two Sky Warrior Block 0 unmanned           Thomas J. Cassidy, Jr., president,        durance flight tests at China Lake, Ca-    two operational aircrafts before the end   test program assets.
aerial systems are now operational in       Aircraft Systems Group, General
Iraq, supporting U.S. Army ground           Atomics Aeronautical Systems said
forces in Operation Iraqi Freedom,”         the UAS Program is a testament to the
the company said in a statement this
week. “The first mission for WY-201
                                            creative solutions that can be achieved
                                            with increased cooperation between
                                                                                            Predator crashes in Afghanistan
occurred on April 18 and lasted 10.5        government and industry. “Sky War-
hours. A second Sky Warrior UAS,            rior is designed to be the Army’s most          by Capt. Toni Tones
WY-202, was deployed at the end of          sophisticated and capable UAS. We are           Bagram AB, Afghanistan
April.”                                     confident that this early fielding will              An Air Force MQ-1 Predator crashed follow-
   Sky Warrior, a derivative of the high-   not only showcase the maturity of the           ing takeoff at approximately 2 a.m. local time
ly capable and combat proven Preda-         technology being incorporated into this         June 12 at Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan.
tor, was developed as a multi-mission       new aircraft line, but also its ability to         The aircraft was approximately six miles
aircraft for Army operations. The Sky       be a true force multiplier to soldiers in       south of Kandahar Airfield.
Warrior provides the U.S. Army with a       the field,” he said.                                The aircraft is a medium-altitude, long-en-
long-endurance, persistent intelligence,       Fielding a new military project at or        durance, remotely piloted aircraft. The MQ-1’s
surveillance, reconnaissance and tacti-     before the scheduled date is something          primary mission is conducting armed reconnais-     An MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle, like this one sitting in
cal strike capability. The Sky Warrior      rare.                                           sance.                                             a hangar at Balad Air Base, Iraq, crashed shortly after takeoff June
can operate on jet and diesel fuel and         The Government Accountability Of-               A board will be convened to investigate the     12 from Bagram Air Base, Afghanistan. (U.S. Air Force photo/
                                                                                                                                               Airman 1st Class Jonathan Steffen)
can fly upwards of 29,000 feet with im-      fice recently released a report chastis-         accident.
proved fuel efficiency over the legacy       ing the Department of Defense’s for the

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                         5
Wind tunnel tests contribute to first flight of F-35
by Philip Lorenz III                                                                                                                                                          F-35 Lightning IIs will replace a wide range
Arnold AFB, Tenn.                                                                                                                                                          of existing aircraft, including A-10 Thunderbolt
                                                                                                                                                                           IIs, F-16 Fighting Falcons, F/A-18 Hornets and
   The June 11 completion of the first flight of                                                                                                                             Harriers. The STOVL version of the F-35 will
the short takeoff/vertical landing version of the                                                                                                                          be used by the U.S. Marines and the British
F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter resonated                                                                                                                           Royal Navy.
with Air Force engineers at the Arnold Engineer-                                                                                                                              The F-35 program is the world’s largest mili-
ing Development Center, Arnold Air Force Base,                                                                                                                             tary project, involving 11 countries and employ-
Tenn.                                                                                                                                                                      ing about 20,000 people worldwide.
   “A number of us at AEDC can take pride in the
part we played in supporting this program with
aerodynamic testing of the airframe and dedicated                                                                                                                             RAYTHEON from Page 4
performance testing of the engine in our devel-
                                                                                                                                                                                 Full rate production of AN/AQS-22 has
opment test cells,” said Marc Skelley, the senior
                                                                                                                                                                              been accelerated since the initial fielding
F-35 project manager assigned to the 716th Test
                                                                                                                                                                              of the MH-60R helicopter into the U.S.
Squadron here. “We’ve tested all three versions in
the wind tunnels. There’s not a lot of difference                                                                                                                             Navy fleet in 2006. To date, Raytheon has
aerodynamically between the carrier takeoff and                                                                                                                               delivered 16 AN/AQS-22 systems and is
landing and short takeoff/vertical landing ver-                                                                                                                               currently under contract for 43. This new
sions. The carrier version has much larger wings                                                                                                                              contract follows two other recent ALFS
for creating more lift necessary to land on a car-                                                                                                                            contracts totaling $89 million to provide
rier deck.”                                                                                                                                                                   spares for whole-life support of deployed
   More than 10,000 hours of testing have been                                                                                                                                systems.
logged on the F-35 aircraft and engines in the                                                                                                                                   Work will be performed at Raytheon’s
wind tunnels and jet engine test cells at AEDC.                                                                                                                               Seapower Capability Center, Portsmouth,
   “Over 2,000 engine test hours for the carrier                                                                                                                              R.I., and by AN/AQS-22 partner, DRS
takeoff and landing and short takeoff/vertical                                                                                                                                Sonar Systems, Gaithersburg, Md. Work
landing versions of the F135 engines have been                                                                                                                                is expected to be completed by January
logged in propulsion test cells in preparation for                                                                                                  U.S. Air Force photo      2011.
this event,” said Marcos O. Moré, the senior Aero-                                                                                                                               Integrated Defense Systems is Raythe-
                                                       Tim Wright examines the short takeoff/vertical landing F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter model in
space Testing Alliance F135 project manager at         the 16 -foot transonic wind tunnel at the Arnold Engineering Development Center at Arnold Air Force                    on’s leader in Joint Battlespace Integration
AEDC. “We take great pride in the contributions        base, Tenn . The information from this testing will go into a large database to refine and validate the                 providing affordable, integrated solutions
we have made in order to reach this very impor-        aircraft designs for flight testing and ultimately, production. Mr. Wright is an aerospace testing alliance             to a broad international and domestic cus-
tant milestone.”                                       craftsman at the center.                                                                                               tomer base, including the U.S. Missile De-
   The F-35B will provide a combination of capa-                                                                                                                              fense Agency, the U.S. Armed Forces and
bilities never before available: stealth, supersonic   ity. Initial flights of the first F-35B will be con-     short takeoff/vertical landing flight beginning in               the Department of Homeland Security.
speed and short takeoff/vertical landing flexibil-      ventional takeoff and landing, with transitions to     early 2009.

6                                                                                                                                                                                                  June 20, 2008
June 20, 2008   7
NASA’s Shuttle Discovery glides home after successful mission
   Space shuttle Discovery and its crew landed at 11:15 a.m., EDT, June 14, at
NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, Fla., completing a 14-day journey of more than
5.7 million miles in space.
   The STS-124 mission was the second of three flights to launch components
to the International Space Station to complete the Japan Aerospace Exploration
Agency’s Kibo laboratory. Discovery delivered Kibo’s tour bus-sized Japanese
Pressurized Module, or JPM, which is the station’s largest module. The mission
included three spacewalks to install and outfit the JPM and activate its robotic
arm system. The lab’s logistics module, which was delivered and installed in a
temporary location in March, was attached to its permanent position on top of
the JPM.
   Mark Kelly commanded the flight and was joined by Pilot Ken Ham, Mission
Specialists Karen Nyberg, Ron Garan, Mike Fossum, Greg Chamitoff, and Japan
Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Akihiko Hoshide. Chamitoff remained
aboard the space station, replacing Expedition 17 Flight Engineer Garrett Reis-
man, who returned to Earth on Discovery after nearly three months on the sta-
tion. Chamitoff will return on shuttle Endeavour’s STS-126 mission, targeted for
launch November 10.
   STS-124 was the 123rd space shuttle flight, the 35th flight for shuttle Discovery
and the 26th flight of a shuttle to the station.
   With Discovery and its crew safely home, the stage is set for the launch of
STS-125 on October 8. Atlantis’ mission will return the space shuttle to the Hubble
                                                                                                                                                                                                NASA photograph by Bill Ingalls
Space Telescope for one last visit before the shuttle fleet retires in 2010. Over 12
days and five spacewalks, Atlantis’ crew will make repairs and upgrades to the         Space shuttle Discovery touches down on runway 15 of the Shuttle Landing Facility at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center,
telescope, preparing it for at least another five years of research.                   concluding the 14-day STS-124 mission to the International Space Station.

NASA tests lunar robots, spacesuits on Earthly moonscape
   Conditions on the moon will be harsher, but                                                                                                                     includes members from Johnson, Ames, Stanford
prototype NASA robotic vehicles braved sand                                                                                                                        University and The Boeing Co. of Chicago.
storms and unprecedented temperature swings this                                                                                                                      NASA’s Glenn Research Center in Cleveland,
month on sand dunes near Moses Lake, Wash., to                                                                                                                     and Carnegie Mellon University of Pittsburgh
prepare for future lunar expeditions. Teams from                                                                                                                   tested an autonomous drilling rover that could be
seven NASA centers and several universities con-                                                                                                                   used to search for valuable resources under the
ducted the tests from June 2-13.                                                                                                                                   lunar surface in the moon’s polar regions. The
   “The goal was to gain hands-on experience                                                                                                                       team also includes members from Ames, John-
with specific technical challenges anticipated                                                                                                                     son, NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, the Cana-
when humans return to the moon by 2020, begin                                                                                                                      dian Space Agency and the Centre for Advanced
to explore the lunar surface, and set up outposts,”                                                                                                                Technology Inc. in Sudbury, Ontario.
said Test Director Bill Bluethmann of NASA’s                                                                                                                          Engineers from Johnson tested a crew mobil-
Johnson Space Center in Houston.                                                                                                                                   ity chassis prototype, or lunar truck, and advanced
   NASA’s Human Robotic Systems Project, part                                                                                                                      spacesuit designs that could be used to greatly
of the agency’s Exploration Technology Devel-                                                                                                                      expand the exploration range of human explorers.
opment Program, focused on human and robotic                                                                                                                       NASA’s new concept for a lunar truck was built in
mobility systems for the moon, but also looked                                                                                                                     less than a year with unique features that allow each
at communication and command and control sys-                                                                                                                      of its six wheels to move independently, giving the
tems that will connect the explorers with Earth                                                                                                                    vehicle the ability to drive in any direction. Human
and each other. The Moses Lake dunes provided                                                                                                                      drivers stood in turrets on the trucks that can pivot
a wide variety of soil consistencies and terrain                                                                                                                   360 degrees, contributing to easy steering.
that allowed the team to put prototype scout ro-                                                                                                                      To practice soil-moving techniques for the
bots, rovers, cargo carriers, cranes and spacesuits                                                                                                                moon, Kennedy developed a bulldozing blade
through tests in a harsh and changing environ-                                                                                                                     for the lunar truck, named the Lunar Attachment
                                                      NASA’s new concept for a lunar truck is highly mobile. Each set of two wheels can pivot individually in
ment.                                                 any direction, giving the vehicle the ability to drive sideways, forward, backward and any direction in      Node for Construction Excavation, or LANCE.
   The prototype tests will be used to inform de-     between - important if the truck becomes mired in lunar dust, needs to zigzag down a steep crater wall       A lightweight, composite technology such as
velopers of specific requirements needed in lunar      or parallel park at its docking station.                                                                     LANCE will be used on the moon to clear land-
                                                                                                                                                                   ing pads and protect outposts from dust and debris
surface support systems for the Constellation Pro-
                                                                                                                                                                   generated by arriving spacecraft. The tests will
gram. The program is building the launch vehicles     to support them. A ground control team located           NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett
                                                                                                                                                                   help NASA evaluate the feasibility of excavating
and spacecraft that will take a new generation of     thousands of miles away at Johnson operated           Field, Calif., tested two K10 rovers that surveyed
                                                                                                                                                                   lunar soil, or regolith, for landing pads, blast pro-
explorers to the moon, as well as lunar landers,      the robots and coordinated the movements of the       simulated lunar landing sites and built topographic
                                                                                                                                                                   tection berms, pathways, foundations and lunar
habitats, life support systems, vehicles and robots   suited explorers.                                     and panoramic 3-D terrain models. One rover used
                                                                                                                                                                   operations areas.
                                                                                                            a ground-penetrating radar to assess subsurface
                                                                                                                                                                      NASA’s Langley Research Center of Hampton,
                                                                                                            structures. The other used a 3-D scanning laser        Va., demonstrated a lunar surface crane that could
                                                                                                            system known as LIDAR to create topographic            be used to lift and reposition heavy cargo, including
                                                                                                            maps. The scout robots are designed to perform         modules used for crew quarters. The Lunar Sur-
                                                                                                            highly repetitive and long-duration tasks, such as     face Manipulator System is a lightweight lifting
                                                                                                            site mapping and science reconnaissance.               and precision positioning device that could give
                                                                                                               “It’s as close as we can get in a terrestrial en-   astronauts a helping hand during early outpost con-
                                                                                                            vironment to the lunar environment,” said Brian        struction and follow-on operations. The crane can
                                                                                                            Wilcox, principle investigator for the All-Terrain     be operated autonomously, remotely or manually
                                                                                                            Hex-Legged Extra-Terrestrial Explorer robot,           in backup mode, and can be reconfigured to per-
                                                                                                            known as ATHLETE, at NASA’s Jet Propulsion             form different tasks. NASA’s Goddard Space Flight
                                                                                                            Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.                         Center of Greenbelt, Md., provided lunar payload
NASA gathered some of its most promising new          A passerby eyes the nimble six-legged robot              JPL tested two ATHLETE cargo-moving rov-            mockups that were used with the lunar crane to
concepts for living and working on the surface of     known as ATHLETE, an all-terrain vehicle that         ers. Each rover has six legs capable of rolling or     demonstrate payload handling operations.
the moon for a series of field tests at Moses Lake,    sports wheels at the end of each limb that allow      walking over extremely rough or steep terrain.            Participants in the June tests will evaluate their
Wash., in early June. Robots, rovers and lunar        the robot to navigate as a rover. The limbs can       This will allow robotic or human missions on the       data and prepare for additional tests in October at
planners simulated lunar exploration, site surveys    also work as legs, turning ATHLETE into a walking     surface of the moon to load, manipulate, deposit       another site, yet to be announced, with moon-like
and outpost construction.                             robot to traverse even more challenging terrain.      and transport payloads to desired sites. The team      conditions.

8                                                                                                                                                                                            June 20, 2008
NASA, ATK conduct first launch abort system igniter test for Orion
   NASA and Alliant Techsystems reached an-                   Orion is part of the Constellation Program of            The igniter is designed to fit inside the aft end     sile Range, N.M.
other milestone Friday with the successful test            spacecraft and systems NASA is building to carry         of the abort motor for Orion’s launch abort sys-           The abort system is a key element in NASA’s
firing of a critical safety component for the Orion         astronauts to the International Space Station and        tem. In the event of an emergency, it will be used      continuing efforts to improve safety as the agen-
crew exploration vehicle, NASA’s next generation           conduct sustained human exploration of the moon.         to ignite the solid propellant inside the abort mo-     cy develops the next generation of spacecraft to
of spaceships.                                             The abort motor, the primary motor in the launch         tor casing. The motor uses a unique reverse flow         return humans to the moon. NASA’s Langley
   A 36-inch-long igniter for the abort motor of           abort system, is designed to pull the crew capsule       technology with four nozzles mounted on the for-        Research Center in Hampton, Va., manages the
Orion’s launch abort system was fired at ATK’s              away from the Ares I launch vehicle in an emer-          ward end. Once ignited, it will produce nearly a        launch abort system design and development
facility in Promontory, Utah.                              gency situation while on the pad or during the first      half-million pounds of thrust within milliseconds       effort with partners and team members from
                                                           300,000 feet of ascent after launch.                     to pull the Orion crew module safely away from          NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Hunts-
                                                              In less than a second, the igniter generated ap-      the Ares I rocket.                                      ville, Ala. Langley’s Launch Abort System Office
                                                           proximately 21,000 pounds of thrust and produced            The June 13 test was the first in a series of three   performs this function as part of the Orion Project
                                                           combustion gas temperatures of more than 5,800           igniter open air tests scheduled for 2008. A full-      Office located at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in
                                                           degrees Fahrenheit. Engineers will use the test fir-      scale abort motor ground test will be conducted         Houston. Orbital Sciences Corporation of Dulles,
                                                           ing to evaluate the igniter’s ballistic properties and   in September. In December, the entire Orion             Va., is building the launch abort system for Lock-
                                                           pressure created inside its chamber. Preliminary         launch abort system will be demonstrated during         heed Martin Corporation of Bethesda, Md., the
                                                           data indicate the igniter performed as expected.         a flight test at the U.S. Army’s White Sands Mis-        prime contractor for Orion.

                                   Photo courtesy of ATK                                                                                                                                                       Photo courtesy of ATK

Technicians prepare the launch abort system                NASA and ATK performed an igniter test of the Orion Launch Abort System at ATK’s Promontory Facility on June 13, which lasted for approximately 150
igniter for its developmental test on June 13 at           milliseconds. The igniter was just over 36 inches tall and was the first time the newly developed igniter had been tested. Its purpose is to ignite the primary
ATK’s Promontory facility.                                 motor on the LAS that pulls the capsule away during an emergency on the pad or during launch.

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                                   9
Air turbulence research                                                                                                  AF engineers create thermal
could lead to safer flights                                                                                               control system for space use
by Maria Callier                                          turbulence on engines, airframes and consequently,          by Heyward Burnette                                   active thermal control.
                                                          air travelers. The two have made a discovery they                                                                    In creating the efficient new thermal con-
Arlington, Va.                                                                                                        Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
                                                          refer to as the “Lagrangian skeleton of turbulence,”                                                              trol capability, AFRL engineers paired two
                                                          since the work of 19th century mathematician Jo-                                                                  technologies developed under separate Small
   Air Force Research Laboratory officials are fund-                                                                      Air Force Research Laboratory engineers at
                                                          seph-Louis Lagrange inspired the team’s particle-                                                                 Business Innovation Research contracts. Spe-
ing scientists who are researching ways to identify                                                                   Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, have
and predict turbulence through the detection of un-       based approach.                                                                                                   cifically, the new system combines the func-
                                                                                                                      successfully integrated two existing technolo-
derlying air patterns.                                       The air pattern structure underlying turbulence is a                                                           tionality of a Sensortek, Inc., electrostatic ra-
                                                                                                                      gies to create a thermal emission management
   Researchers believe the detection of these underly-    complicated, ever-changing configuration that affects                                                              diator, or ESR, device with a heat-flux-based
                                                                                                                      system suitable for space use.
ing structures will make it possible to forecast clear-   the motion of nearby particles (e.g., pollutants, strato-      Achieving operationally responsive space           emissivity measuring method developed by
air turbulence. This capability would benefit manned       spheric ice crystals). Monitoring the backscattering        capabilities requires versatile satellites that can   Advanced Thermal and Environmental Con-
and unmanned military aircraft.                           of onboard lasers enables detection of this particle        adapt as needed to accomplish multiple mis-           cepts, Inc.
   The work is equally important for the safety of        movement, which serves as a reliable predictor of en-       sions, and an integral part of such adaptable            After merging the two technologies, AFRL
high-altitude Air Force operations, as well as the        suing turbulence. The MIT scientists used nonlinear,        satellites is a thermal control system enabling       engineers mounted the resultant device inside
stable pointing of onboard laser weapons. Ultimately,     dynamical systems theory to translate the recorded          real-time, on-orbit temperature control of the        a large vacuum chamber in order to test it in
this Lagrangian skeleton approach could also be used      data necessary for uncovering these effects.                spacecraft.                                           a simulated space environment. Upon obtain-
to locate the source of dispersed chemical or radioac-       The team is currently working to reduce the                 In maintaining appropriate spacecraft tem-         ing a steady-state temperature, the test team
tive pollution, thus improving homeland security.         time it takes to produce detailed images of detect-         perature, the system ensures proper function-         supplied voltage to one side of the ESR struc-
   Dr. George Haller, professor of mechanical en-         ed structures. The researchers are also developing          ing of onboard equipment. AFRL’s newly                ture, causing the membrane to draw down into
gineering, and MIT graduate student Manikandan            laser-based scanning techniques that yield more             developed thermal emission management                 contact with the ESR structure’s rigid surface.
Mathur, lead a research team exploring the impact of      complete wind data.                                         system is particularly well-suited for space          The embedded heat flux sensor demonstrated a
                                                                                                                      deployment, since it requires very little pow-        very fast response time, so the engineers were
                                                                                                                      er, is compact and has minimal data storage           able to monitor the hybrid device’s emissivity
                                                                                                                      requirements.                                         throughout the temperature change. The results
                                                                                                                         Active thermal management devices gener-           acquired from the ESR structure reflected sig-
                                                                                                                      ally rely on heaters and mechanical refrigera-        nificant differences in emissivity values - such
                                                                                                                      tors to control spacecraft temperature. While         large differences are a requirement for systems
                                                                                                                      these active systems can achieve real-time            designed to facilitate a wide range of active
                                                                                                                      temperature changes to protect spacecraft             thermal control.
                                                                                                                      from extreme environments, they unfortu-                 Subsequent to these successful tests, the
                                                                                                                      nately require power supplies and are com-            AFRL-developed device underwent incorpo-
                                                                                                                      plex and heavy. Conversely, AFRL’s new                ration into the Materials (on the) International
                                                                                                                      technology not only requires little operating         Space Station Experiment-6, or MISSE-6, as-
                                                                                                                      power, but weighs considerably less than              sembly, launched earlier this year aboard the
                                                                                                                      state-of-the-art active control systems. The          Space Shuttle Endeavor. MISSE-6 mission re-
                                                                                                                      integrated device also offers the advantage           sults will aid scientists in determining the new
                                                                                                                      of on-demand switching between passive and            system’s viable use for official missions.

10                                                                                                                                                                                                    June 20, 2008
WASPs recall their flying exploits
by Diane Betzler                                                                                                                                                                meet and work with another famous aviatrix, Jac-
staff writer                                                                                                                                                                    queline Cochran, considered by most to have been
                                                                                                                                                                                a natural born pilot.
                                                                                                                                                                                   “She held more speed, distance and altitude
   Three Antelope Valley women whose love for                                                                                                                                   records than any other aviator, male or female,
their country and passion for flying brought them                                                                                                                                Flora Belle said. According to written bios Co-
together more than 60 years ago, today share their                                                                                                                              chran flew with the best of them, including the
memories and experiences about a devotion for                                                                                                                                   guy with “the right stuff,” famed Air Force Test
their homeland and long-lasting friendships that                                                                                                                                pilot Chuck Yeager.
stood the sands of time.                                                                                                                                                           What makes these three Antelope Valley Wom-
   Lancaster residents Irma “Babe” Story, 86;                                                                                                                                   en so special is that when the call went out, 25,000
Ty Killen, 84; and 83-year-old Flora Belle Re-                                                                                                                                  women pilots applied but only 1,860 were accept-
ece became “sisters” when during their late teens                                                                                                                               ed and of those, 1,078 earned their wings. Today,
and early 20s they answered the call for licensed                                                                                                                               there are less than 200 former WASP left.
women civilian pilots to fly military aircraft and                                                                                                                                  “Thirty-eight of our sisters lost their lives while
were sent to Avenger Field in Sweetwater, Texas,                                                                                                                                serving our country during the war,” Ty said. She
to begin training as Women Airforce Service Pi-                                                                                                                                 said war breeds a brotherhood and a sisterhood
lots, more commonly known as WASP.                                                                                                                                              like no other, “You all go through it together. It’s
   “I learned to fly before I could drive a car,”                                                                                                                                a rough deal, but you do it,” she said. She said that
said Babe, who received her private pilot’s certifi-                                                                                                                             because they weren’t considered military, a fallen
cate in June 1942 after completing a civilian pilot           WASP classmates posing with a male pilot. Flora Belle sitting in center.                                          WASP was sent home at the expense of her family
training program at the Antelope Valley College                                                                                                                                 and without any traditional military honors.
and at the Antelope Valley Flying Service, which                 In 1944 Flora Belle graduated, earned her wings       craft, about 78 different types, to their assigned          All three women said their only regret about
was owned at the time by Antelope Valley’s most               and became a WASP, a group of women who were             destinations.                                            their wartime service is that they weren’t consid-
famous female pilot, Pancho Barnes.                           the first in history to fly American military air-            “We flew just about every kind of aircraft the mili-   ered military.
   “Pancho taught me how to fly, she was a won-                craft. She was 20 years old and had learned to           tary had during World War II,” Ty proudly stated.           “We weren’t allowed to have a star in the window or
derful person,” Babe said. Babe and the legendary             fly the Army way.                                            All three of our Antelope Valley heroic women         a flag on our coffin because we were not in the Army,”
Pancho Barnes had become good friends and for                    Ty and Babe had completed their WASP training         were assigned to target practice flights at one time      Ty said of her fallen sisters. “We weren’t considered
a while Babe taught flying lessons at Pancho’s                 a year before Flora Belle and their paths hadn’t yet     or another. That’s when they towed targets with          military therefore we had no benefits,” she said.
Happy Bottom Riding Club. “Everything good                    crossed with their soon to be life-long pal, they        the aircraft they were flying so that our men, who           “Jackie [Cochran] fought the good fight trying
that happened to me was a result of my being able             were busy in the field taking over jobs that were         were using live ammunition, could learn to shoot         to get us accepted as military,” Babe said.
to fly,” she said, reflecting back on earlier years.            normally filled by Army Air Force male pilots who         down flying targets using anti-aircraft weapons.             “That’s a fact,” agreed Flora Belle, she said
   Ty’s love for flying drove her to get a job at a            were now relieved of their state-side duties and            “We got 50 rounds a day shot at us,” Babe re-         Cochran was instrumental in getting Congress to
local airport in Arizona, where she was living at             freed to fight for their country over seas.               called, saying, “If you see the gun pointed at you,      certify the WASP as military. It took 33 years after
the time. “I told the manager they can’t run the                 “We [WASPs] were called in because the war            it will never hit you.”                                  the war, but they finally got their military rating.
airport without me. I can fix the airplanes and                was killing our pilots faster than the Army could           It wasn’t always all work and no play the wom-           After all was said and done, when asked if they
service them and keep them flying, she told him.”              train them,” Flora Belle said. She said First Lady       en grinned, recalling some antics they got in to.        would do it again, “In a heartbeat,” they said in
She convinced the manager and got the job.                    Eleanor Roosevelt announced, ‘It’s time to bring         Flora Belle laughed about the time she and two           unison.
   After work, the flying instructor and Ty would              in the girls.’ And so the call went out.                 other WASP took an AT-6 and flew to Denver to                “They paid us $99 a month to fly their aircraft,
go up into the wild blue yonder where Ty’s dream                 “Our country was desperate,” Ty agreed. “We           do some Christmas shopping. “We got stuck in a           but we would have done it for free,” Ty offered.
of learning to fly became a reality.                           were losing the war. The bombing of Pear Harbor                                                                      Today the remaining WASP get together at least
   Flora Belle also learned to fly before learning how         on Dec. 7, 1941 had done more damage than our                                                                     once every two years. Ty and Flora Belle just
to drive a car, partly, she said, because her family didn’t   leaders let be known,” she said.                                                                                  returned from Sweetwater where they revisited
own a car. Flora Belle was born and raised in Okla-              Ty said the battle of Midway was the turning                                                                   Avenger Field and attended the dedication of the
homa during the depression years and cars at that time        point for America.                                                                                                new WASP Museum.
were a luxury that most families couldn’t afford.                History tells us that prior to the Battle of Midway                                                               “It was a wonderful celebration,” Flora Belle
   Her interest in flying developed when, as a                Japan maintained naval superiority over the United                                                                said. She said the town people held a barbeque in
child, she would watch the birds wing their way               States and could usually choose where and when to                                                                 their honor. “The mayor read off the names of the
from one tree to another. Her fascination with                attack. After the historical battle at Midway - Japan                                                             38 WASP that were killed. We signed pictures, post-
watching birds fly soon turned to watching air-                and America pretty much became equals and the                                                                     cards, whatever they wanted us to sign,” she said.
planes in flight. She knew at an early age that               U.S. was able to go on the offensive.                                                                                The women did a fly-by over the town and
someday she too, would hold the controls that                    “The Battle of Midway turned the tides in our                                                                  Flora Belle was handed over the controls of the
would take her soaring high above the clouds.                 favor. Before that they were shooting us down                                                                     piper cub transporting her back to a moment in
   The chance to realize her dream came in 1942               every which way,” Ty said.                                                                                        time that she’ll never forget.
during her freshman year at Oklahoma City Col-                   She would know, she suffered first-hand the
lege. Flora Belle saw an ad in the local newspaper            heart-wrenching effects of war. “My husband
calling for women who were licensed pilots to                 was a pilot too; he flew the B-24. His plane went
help the War effort and joint the newly formed                down somewhere between China and India and
government WASP organization.                                 was never found,” she said recalling the painfully
   The one requirement for eligibility she didn’t             high price she and so many other people from
have was that she needed at least 35 flying hours              both sides had to pay during the war.
to her credit to qualify.                                        “War is not fun”, Ty said, adding, “It’s a terrible
   Undaunted, the determined adventurer talked                way countries settle their differences.”
her older brother Evan, a first lieutenant in the                 After completing training WASP were scattered         Irma “Babe” Story in uniform at 20 years old.
Army at the time, into paying her way for flying               throughout 120 air bases across the country relieving
time at Nuckols Field, the city’s local airport.              male pilots and freeing them for combat missions.
   One thousand dollars and 35 registered flying                  According to records WASP flew more than 60            snow storm and couldn’t get back for a couple of
hours later Flora Belle was on her way to the ad-             million miles of operational flights. Their assign-       days,” she reminisced.
venture of a lifetime.                                        ments included flying aircraft from the factory to          Ty recalled the time Babe came to visit her in
   “It was a grueling seven months of training,” Flo-         designated military training bases, to delivering        her bay, (their living quarters were called bays and
ra Belle said. Her days began with roll call at dawn          supplies to different military installations.            there were six women to a bay).
followed by 8 to 10 hours of classroom lectures and              “We loved every minute of it though,” Babe was          “Ty and I got to talking and lost track of the
flying lessons that filled the rest of the day.                 quick to point out. “When things slowed down, we         time,” Babe remembered. Suddenly the lights
   “We had to learn everything the men learned                prayed for a hurricane,” Ty piped in, explaining that    went out and all the bay doors were locked for the
about flying,” she said. In the classroom she                 because then they would have to fly the planes out        night. Ty had to let Babe climb out the window so
learned about the codes, how to navigate, and                 of harms way. “Whatever it took to give us a reason      that she wouldn’t be discovered by a superior of-
all about the theory of flight. In the cockpits she            to fly, we were on it!” Flora Belle agreed,               ficer. An escape route apparently used more times         1944 Avenger Field, Sweetwater, Texas. From left:
learned how to fly everything from aircraft train-                Between September 1942 and December 1944 it’s         than they cared to admit.                                Francis Sanfer, Hazel Stamper, and Flora Belle
ers to the country’s huge four-engine bombers.                been recorded that WASP delivered 12,650 air-              While in training our three local flyers got to         Reece.

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                                   11
   Former Boeing scientist charged in defense probe                      She also created and placed domestic and international advertis-   ing - Gulf Coast. “They are shipbuilders who will strengthen our
   A former Boeing scientist who specialized in anti-missile sys-     ing, served as managing editor of customer publications, guided       executive team.”
tems plans to plead guilty to unlawfully retaining national defense   trade show activities, and directed marketing research and brand-        Amis, a Newport News Apprentice School graduate, will be
information, his attorney said.                                       ing.                                                                  responsible for leading all craft employees, including trades,
   Abraham Lesnik, 68, was charged June 16, nearly two years             Before joining Lockheed Martin, she was director of public         and education and training. His responsibilities will also include
after a federal investigation into whether he misused classified       relations and senior communications counsel for Neill Corp., a        the Apprentice School, all manufacturing disciplines, including
information, prosecutors said. He faces up to 10 years in prison      leading distributor of Aveda beauty products, and manager of          maintenance and upkeep of facilities in all gulf coast shipyards
and a $250,000 fine if convicted.                                      media and community relations for Stewart Enterprises, Inc., an       in Pascagoula, Avondale, Gulfport, and Tallulah. Amis earned
   Lesnik appeared in court, where U.S. Magistrate judge set          international publicly-held company.                                  a bachelor’s degree in technology management from Saint Leo
his bail at $150,000, Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael Zweiback           Earlier in her career she served by gubernatorial appointment      College in 1993. He also earned an associate’s degree in weld-
said.                                                                 as executive director of the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and          ing technology from Morehead State University. Amis has been
   A trial date was set for Aug. 12, but Lesnik’s attorney, Marc      Marketing Board. In that role, she managed a staff of appoin-         with Northrop Grumman since 1982 and has held positions of
Harris, said his client will plead guilty.                            tees and civil servants and a 17-member board representing a          increasing responsibility in waterfront operations and program
   U.S. Attorney’s Office spokesman Thom Mrozek said most of           diverse cross-section of industry and community leaders. She          management. He most recently served as program manager for
the case was under seal. A charging document alleges Lesnik had       also oversaw public and media relations, environmental and            the National Security Cutter.
unauthorized possession of 10 classified documents and one “top        government affairs, and the internal and external communica-             Gallimore will be responsible for all ship engineering and
secret” document “pertaining to national defense satellite threat     tions functions.                                                      design efforts for the Gulf Coast operations, including the de-
mitigation.”                                                             In addition, she has worked in print and broadcast journalism.     velopment of integrated logistical support products. He will
   The FBI searched Lesnik’s San Fernando Valley home three           A native of New Orleans, she earned a bachelor’s degree in mass       also serve as the lead for integrating engineering-related work
times in 2006 and confiscated a laptop computer.                       communications at the University of Southwestern Louisiana            between the company’s Gulf Coast and Newport News facili-
   Lesnik’s Department of Defense security clearance was listed       and is a Loyola University Environmental Communications Fel-          ties. He is a 1982 graduate of Virginia Polytechnic Institute
as “Secret, Special Access” until he was terminated by Boe-           low.                                                                  and earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from
ing in 2007, according to a court document he filed to prevent                                                                              State University in Blacksburg, Va. He is also licensed as a
Boeing officials from examining his computer. He argued it               Northrop appoints three VPs at its shipbuilding sector             professional engineer in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Gal-
contained personal financial, medical and family information.            Northrop Grumman recently announced the appointment of             limore has been with Northrop Grumman for 26 years at the
AP                                                                    three vice presidents at its Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding Gulf       company’s Newport News facility. He most recently served
                                                                      Coast Operations.                                                     as program director for the Advanced SEAL Delivery System
   Raytheon names communications VP                                      Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding, the newly-formed sector             program.
   Raytheon has named Catherine H. Blades vice president for          of Northrop Grumman Corporation, is made up of the former                Spaulding will be responsible for the development and man-
communications and public affairs at its Space and Airborne Sys-      Northrop Grumman Ship Systems and Newport News shipbuild-             agement of project plans and schedules for all Gulf Coast prod-
tems business.                                                        ing sectors.                                                          uct lines. He will also manage production control, production
   Blades came to Raytheon from Lockheed Martin where she                Kevin Amis has been appointed vice president of operations,        engineering and industrial engineering, and labor resource and
was director of marketing and international communications            Dennis Gallimore has been named vice president of engineering         capacity planning for the Gulf Coast facilities. Spaulding earned
for a $12 billion aeronautics business. Overseeing an exten-          and integrated logistics support, and Rick Spaulding has been         a bachelor’s degree in Naval Architecture and Marine Engi-
sive network of public relations firms, she led communica-            appointed vice president of planning.                                 neering from the University of Michigan in 1983 and joined
tions initiatives to identify and create opportunities to support        “Kevin, Dennis and Rick will provide solid leadership in three     the company immediately after graduating. He most recently
capture, keep-sold and market-development activities in 40            critical areas of our organization,” said Irwin F. Edenzon, vice      served as director of Central Planning for the company’s New-
countries.                                                            president and general manager of Northrop Grumman Shipbuild-          port News facility.

12                                                                                                                                                                                   June 20, 2008
AVBOT meeting focuses on bringing a shuttle home
by Diane Betzler                             Calif., has also put a plan into place to      The coalition will look into several      nuclear arsenal. Aerospace companies       ian hospital facility. If this project gets
staff writer                                 go after a shuttle.                         possible sites to be used for a shuttle      are now speculating on the effect the      a green light the facility will be used
                                                “The problem is there aren’t enough      museum and will investigate the cost         change in personnel might have on cur-     for military personnel as well as civil-
   Dr. Susan Miller attended the Ante-       shuttles to go around,” she said. Of the    of starting from scratch with building       rent and future contracts.                 ian. Edwards AFB does not currently
lope Valley Board of Trade’s monthly         five flyable shuttles built, and a few      a new facility verses remodeling an ex-         The Air Force Real Property Agency      have any emergency facilities.
business meeting June 12 to brief board      that were built to be used for training     isting one and bringing it up to neces-      is looking into a request to lease Air        The Air Force is currently doing a fea-
members on what it’s going to take to        models, three shuttles plus the Enter-      sary standards.                              Force land just outside the west gate to   sibility study and hopes to complete the
bring a space shuttle home.                  prise will be up for grabs.                    She said a good place to start the        be used for the construction of a civil-   study by the end of this coming August.
   Miller, who’s part of the Palmdale           The Enterprise, besides being built in   plan in motion is to get letters of sup-
Shuttle Acquisition Team for the City
of Palmdale, has been contracted by the
city to support its existing staff mem-
                                             Palmdale, did all its approach and land-
                                             ing flight testing at Edwards Air Force
                                             Base, Calif. It was constructed without
                                                                                         port from Antelope Valley cities and
                                                                                            Miller did confirm a positive note
                                                                                                                                      Edwards VIP tour set for
bers in the effort to secure a shuttle for
the Antelope Valley.
                                             engines or a functional heat shield and
                                             was not capable of space operations; its
                                                                                         that AVBOT members were already
                                                                                         aware of - Boeing and the GSA have           Civ-Mil Support Group
   She told AVBOT members that it’s          purpose was to perform test flights in       begun shipping some shuttle artifacts
going to take a statewide coalition to       the atmosphere. When asked if the co-       to Palmdale. All agree that’s a pretty       by Raphael Jaffe
go after a shuttle. She said there are       alition would settle for the Enterprise,    good indication that some high-ranking       staff writer
other cities and entities that also want     Miller said that was Plan B.                officials believe that at lease one shuttle
                                                                                                                                         Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., will welcome a select group of the civic-minded
the chance to bring a shuttle to their          Miller said it is critical to develop    should be returned to its birth place.
                                                                                                                                      members of the Edwards Civilian-Military Support Group June 23 and 24.
community.                                   a coalition now because all the other          She said another plus in the Ante-
                                                                                                                                         The Group has been supporting the base and its assigned personnel for 20 years,
   Miller said the competition for get-      players are ahead of the Antelope Val-      lope Valley’s favor is that we have the
                                                                                                                                      performing service projects and hosting similar visiting civilian groups.
ting a shuttle is tough and named five        ley in terms of having a plan in place.     workforce up here that have the skills
                                                                                                                                         The Civic Leaders Tour starts at 8:25 a.m. with a welcome by Maj. Gen. David
top contenders that have already put         “We’re several months if not years be-      to maintain such an undertaking and
                                                                                                                                      J. Eichhorn, Air Force Flight Test Center commander, Col. Jerry L. Gandy, 95th
together a plan for claiming that piece      hind other cities,” she advised.            will be willing to volunteer their time.
                                                                                                                                      Air Base Wing commander, and Col. Nancy P. Wharton, 95th vice commander.
of space history.                               She said her assignment is to as-           Other subjects of interest the AVBOT
                                                                                                                                      There will also be a briefing by David C. Bond, executive director of the AF-
   She said the Johnson Space Center         sess, determine and collect interested      members are following closely to de-
in Houston, Texas, and the Kennedy           partners that will support going after a    termine what, if any, impact the issues
                                                                                                                                         There will then be a tour of the base, including environmental and historical
Space Center in Orlando, Fla., both          shuttle for the AV.                         might have on the Antelope Valley
                                                                                                                                      sites. These include Hap Arnold’s camp, the North Base Sled T- track, Rogers Dry
want one, the Smithsonian in Washing-           She warned, however, “Be careful         are:
                                                                                                                                      Lake, Yeager Pit, Muroc Manor, and wind-abraded ridges known as yardangs. The
ton, D.C., wants and will most likely        what you wish for,” because, she said,         The unexpected changes in U.S. Air
                                                                                                                                      Air Force Research Laboratory Propulsion Directorate impressive test stand at
get one. Seattle’s Museum of Flight          “it’s going to be a very expensive un-      Force leadership after Air Force Chief
                                                                                                                                      Luehman Ridge will be visited, and there will be a briefing by Joel Beckmann.
is a major competitor because of the         dertaking.” Miller predicted it would       of Staff Gen. Michael Mosely and Air
                                                                                                                                         The day’s tour ends with a visit to the Edwards aircraft museum and curator’s
city’s ties with Boeing. “They have the      cost about $20 million just to rehab one    Force Secretary Michael Wynne were
                                                                                                                                      facility. Dinner at Club Muroc with wing leadership ends the first day.
corporate humph,” she joked. And the         of the hangers at Site 9 to make it ac-     asked to resign as a result of what’s be-
Columbus Space Center in Downey,             ceptable to house a shuttle.                ing called “a mishandling” of the U.S.                                                                     See CIV-MIL Page 14

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                         13
Adopt-a-Plane volunteers spruce up Airpark
by Jacine Robinson
staff writer

   The Adopt-a-Plane program at Joe Davies Heritage Air-
park in Palmdale, Calif., held its monthly clean-up session
June 14.
   Kathleen Dewhurst-Whiteside, lead maintenance work-
er, said the day had a “had a great turn out,” referring to
the number of volunteers participating in the session.
   The Adopt-a-Plane program pairs community volunteer
organizations with aircraft on display at the airpark. The
organizations have the opportunity to “adopt” an aircraft,
some of which are chosen because they have special sig-
nificance to the organization.
   The groups participate in one Saturday morning work
session per month and are expected to wash their adopted
aircraft and ensure that the surrounding area is kept clean
and free of weeds. All necessary supplies and equipment
are provided by the City of Palmdale. The efforts of the
volunteers will be acknowledged with a plaque next to
their aircraft, as well as a volunteer recognition ceremo-
   Current participants of the program include: the Ante-
lope Valley Chapter of the Air Force Association, Northrop
Grumman Recreation Club of the Antelope Valley, AV
Touring Society Motorcycle Club, Friends of the Defense
Contract Management Agency, Civil Air Patrol Squadron
84, and the Rosamond High School Air Force Junior
ROTC, the Major McManus Boys Club, Veterans of For-
eign Wars Post 3552, the Lancaster High School Eagles
Robotics Club, the Muroc Young Marines, the Antelope
Valley Sea Cadets, the Highland High School Law and
Government Academy and the Highland High School Air
Force Junior ROTC. The Antelope Valley Sunrise Rotary
Club has also volunteered to serve the participants refresh-
ments on work days.
   Commenting on the June 14 work session, Dewhurst-
Whiteside noted that the Highland High School Law and
Government Academy repainted the nose of their adopted
F-101 Voodoo with anti-glare paint. In addition to the Civil
Air Patrol Squadron 84s “loving attention to their T-33
Shooting Star,” The Sea Cadets worked on their adopted
F-14, Lancaster High School’s robotics team attended to
their F-105, the Friends of the DCMA cleaned their A-4,
the AV Touring Society worked on their A-7 Corsair, and
                                       See ADOPT Page 15

                                                               CIV-MIL from Page 13
                                                                  Overnight billeting at Distinguished
                                                               Visitor Quarters or Visitor Quarters
                                                               is available. The next day includes a
                                                               visit to the Benefield Anechoic Facil-
                                                               ity, which is among the largest in the
                                                               world. It is a 250 x 264 x 70-foot steel
                                                               plate box enclosed in a metal hangar.
                                                               The surfaces are covered in radio fre-
                                                               quency absorbing foam. A golf event is
                                                               an option to the tour.
                                                                  One example of Civ-Mil activities
                                                               is the deployment bag issued to all
                                                               Edwards’ personnel who are shipping
                                                               out. About 1,000 have been contrib-
                                                               uted. The items are purchased from
                                                               Civ-Mil funds, and the bags assembled
                                                               by volunteers. They include foodstuffs
                                                               (trail mix, fruit snacks, hard candies,
                                                               beef jerky, gum and granola bars); per-
                                                               sonal items (wet wipes, chapstick, tis-
                                                               sues, Listerine and hand sanitizer); and
                                                               leisure items (crossword puzzle book,
                                                               pocket notebook, playing cards and me-
                                                               chanical pencils). There is also a thank
                                                               you card from the Civ-Mil group.
                                                                  Those interested in participating in
                                                               this association may contact either of
                                                               the membership co-chairmen at dbazz-
                                                      or MICHAEL.
                                                                  A VIP tour similar to the Edwards
                                                               tour is scheduled to Vandenberg AFB,
                                                               Calif., for Oct. 9 and 10. Again, this
                                                               will be open to members only.

14                                                                            June 20, 2008
VA tries to block voter registration
by Jose de la Isla                                       become official voter registration agencies that            Ohio Gov. Richard Celeste called it “black-
                                                                                                                                                                                     How to contact
Hispanic Link News Service                               would distribute materials and help applicants          mail.” Mario Cuomo of New York said Devine
                                                                                                                                                                                Aerotech News and Review
                                                         fill out cards and return them.                          was in fact curtailing access to the ballot box. And
   The recent ban by the Veterans Administration            A federal appellate court is about to hear ar-       Texas Gov. Mark White called a press conference
on allowing voter registration in its facilities has a   guments following the lower court’s January             at a state agency in which he passed out registra-
familiar ring to it. All this has happened before.       decision. All this despite President Bill Clinton’s     tion cards.
   The controversy centers around a May 5 VA             executive order in 1994 requiring federal agen-            Within days after Devine’s letter was made
directive claiming voter registration drives at its      cies to help register, distribute materials and help    public, the Republican U.S. Senate approved a
facilities are not permitted because they could dis-     applicants fill out cards and return them.               resolution encouraging voter registration drives at
rupt other operations and may pose a violation of           Now why does all this sound familiar?                all levels of government. There was no violation
the Hatch Act. This is the law that prohibits fed-          Back in 1984, New Mexico Gov. Toney Anaya            of the Hatch Act nor conflict with funds paying
eral employees from engaging in partisan political       ordered his state agencies to provide voter-reg-        for state personnel.
activity on the job.                                     istration services. This was followed by similar           House hearings chastised Devine for selec-
   VA spokesman Matt Smith said the reason for           actions in New York, Ohio and Texas. But the            tively applying federal legislation and misap-
the directive stemmed from wanting to ensure             Texas employment commissioner balked. He filed           plying it for partisan purposes. to “intimidate”
that staff stay focused on the work at hand and          a complaint with the U.S. Department of Labor           the governors.
don’t have to decide the partisan political agendas      asking whether state workers - partly paid with            Later, New York reported about 150,000 new
                                                                                                                                                                                     Subscriber Services
of those who want to conduct voter registration          federal funds - should distribute voter-registration    registrations. Ohio lottery, liquor stores and unem-
drives on their premises.                                forms.                                                  ployment offices came up with 59,000 forms. In
   For years the VA had allowed local managers to           Ronald Reagan had been elected in 1980, and          Texas, 450 human services offices received desk-
decide whether to permit such drives, Ian Urbina         the 1982 mid-term elections suggested a strong          top registration dispensers, and a flyer was sent to
reported in The New York Times. But in 2004 a            public opposition against Reagonomics. That was         welfare, Medicaid and food-stamp recipients.
Democratic Party chairman in California filed suit        the backdrop to the controversy that followed.             In the final analysis, trying to block voter regis-
when he was refused permission to register voters           Donald Devine, directing the U.S. Office of           tration is an old ploy. It is the kind of dirty tricks
at a VA campus. A lower court ruled against the          Personnel Management, implied in a letter to the        Richard Nixon’s operations and Karl Rove’s an-
                                                                                                                                                                              Story ideas, letters, editorials
county chairman in January, saying he failed to          then Democratic governors of New York, Ohio             tics were famous for. It is unworthy of our times.
prove any veteran was actually prevented from            and Texas that state personnel were being forced        By its very nature, registering voters — whoever
voting.                                                  to influence people to register Democratic. Then         does it and whoever the registrants are — is a
   In May the VA banned all outside groups from          he went the next insulting step, asking the gov-        necessary civic activity, not a partisan one.
registration drives on its properties. The same          ernors to turn over materials used in federal pro-         Perhaps the next revisions of the Civil Rights
                                                                                                                                                                                             Web Site
month, VA officials turned down a request by the          grams and suggested their grants were in jeopardy       Act should include a category for federal admin-
California secretary of state to allow the sites to      if they didn’t comply.                                  istrators who obstruct voter registration.

The real story behind the 9/11 attacks
By Paul C. Campos                                                                            Iraq had to be invaded because Hussein was trying to build atomic
Scripps Howard News Service                                                               weapons - weapons that he might well give to terrorist groups that were
                                                                                          his allies in Radical Islam’s quest to destroy America.
   Every month I get a few e-mails from people who want to reveal to me the real             This, I repeat, was (and to a significant extent still is), the respectable
truth about the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The truth, according to my correspondents,        interpretation of the meaning of 9/11. When anyone questioned the                         Where you can get
always involves some incredibly elaborate conspiracy theory in which the U.S.             evidence for this view, Very Serious Politicians like Secretary of State              Aerotech News and Review
government staged the attacks to justify the so-called war on terror and the inva-        Condoleezza Rice would say things like “we don’t want the smoking
sions of Afghanistan and Iraq.                                                            gun to be a mushroom cloud.”
   These theories are invariably absurd on their face (for one thing, they assume            Meanwhile Very Serious Opinion Makers like Charles Kraut-
a genuinely superhuman level of malevolent competence on the part of the Bush             hammer of the Washington Post argued (and continue to argue) that
administration). Yet despite all their superficial absurdity, the claims of the 9/11       America must also go to war against Iran, because we could wake
Truth movement touch on a deeper truth, which is as ironic as it is disturbing.           up one day to the news that nuclear weapons have been detonated
   That deeper truth is contained in their claims that the real meaning of 9/11 has       in several American cities, by order of suicidal mullahs who turned
very little to do with the standard account given by our government and media.            over their soon-to-be-acquired nuclear arsenal to the vast shadowy
While the 9/11 Truth movement is easy to dismiss as a product of various paranoid         global Jihadist network.                                                          Aerotech News and Review
delusions, the irony is that the respectable version of what happened on 9/11 is             That the respectable interpretation of 9/11 remains respectable in so
itself a reflection of strikingly similar patterns of thought.                             many important places should not obscure the fact that it is a paranoid
   The respectable version - the version that was more or less accepted by all Very       fantasy of the first order - one as utterly unhinged from reality as the
Serious People at the time of the invasion of Iraq - goes like this: The 9/11 attacks     most extravagant imaginings of the 9/11 Truth movement.
were merely an early strike in a war against the United States. This war is being            It’s easy to lose sight of this, because while the 9/11 Truth movement
carried out by something called Radical Islam, of which the al Qaeda terrorist            remains quarantined on obscure Web sites, the paranoid conspiracy
network is only one small branch.                                                         theorists currently in charge of American foreign policy continue to
   Radical Islam is a global conspiracy, made up of a significant minority of the          appear regularly on network television and on the opinion pages of
world’s more than 1 billion Muslims. It includes the governments of nations               our leading newspapers.
like Iran and Syria, and one of its key supporters was Saddam Hussein’s Iraqi                There, they make crazy arguments, such as that denying the president
regime.                                                                                   the right to throw people in prison for the rest of their lives without
   The goal of Radical Islam is world domination through the creation of a global         ever having to explain why exposes our nation to the risk of annihila-
Caliphate, which requires, among other things, the complete destruction of the            tion by terrorists. Meanwhile, almost nobody ever points out that these
United States, and the conversion of our surviving population to the most extreme         arguments are actually insane.
form of Islamic fundamentalism, as practiced in nations such as Saudi Arabia.                And that’s the real truth about 9/11.                                                   ............................ Paul Kinison
                                                                                                                                                                                                   .............. Lisa Kinison
                                                                                                                                                                                ................................. Stuart Ibberson

   ADOPT from Page 14                                                                                                                                                              ............................. Gail Ellis

   the Northrup Grumman Recreation Club worked            that had been recently reassembled.                      According to Tim Hughes, City of Palmdale                       ............................. Diane Hasse
   on the Airpark’s model of the B-2 Spirit.                The Joe Davies Airpark opened in 1998 on a          Deputy Director of Public Works, “ the Airpark                                            ...... Frank Escobar, Jr.
      Dewhurst-Whiteside noted that last month,           26.4-acre parcel of land at Air Force Plant 42,       is a unique tourist destination within the Ante-
   the Los Angeles Sheriffs Department brought            on Avenue P between 20th and 25th Street East.        lope Valley that celebrates the rich aerospace
   their Vital Intervention Directional Alternations      Visitors may tour the park free of charge on Fri-     history of Plant 42.” The Airpark’s future ex-                Aerotech News and Review
                                                                                                                                                                                    456 E. Ave. K-4, Suite 8
   class to maintain the C-140 Tri-Star display.          days, Saturdays, and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4        pansion plans include increasing its inventory to                    Lancaster, CA 93535
   Following their participation in the effort, the       p.m. Tours may be scheduled on Wednesdays             40 static display aircraft as well as the construc-           e-mail:
   group decided to adopt the B-52 Stratofortress         and Thursdays.                                        tion of a visitor’s center.                               Visit our web site at

June 20, 2008                                                                                                                                                                                                                  15

To top