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13 May 2014

Russia Bans Export of RD-180 Engines to US

Author: Marco A. Cáceres, Drawn From: World Space Systems Briefing

There is great irony to all the fuss during the past few months about the possibility that the Obama administration might block the continued sales of Russian RD-180 liquid-fuel engines to United Launch Alliance (ULA) of Denver, Colorado, as a way of punishing Russia for its government's annexation of the Crimea and ongoing meddling in eastern Ukraine.

06 May 2014

Growth in Business Jet Market Eclipsing Stagnant Military Market

Author: Richard L. Aboulafia, Drawn From: World Military & Civil Aircraft Briefing

High-end business jets are a strong market. General Dynamics' first-quarter results, announced last month, show the continued evolution of the company from an almost pure-play defense prime to a company deriving nearly half (45%) of its earnings from Gulfstream Aerospace and Jet Aviation, two units that focus on manufacturing, completing, and supporting high-end ($26 million-plus) jets. 

18 April 2014

The Personal Satellite Revolution Has Begun

Author: Marco A. Cáceres, Drawn From: World Space Systems Briefing

The launch Friday of SpaceX's Falcon 9 v1.1 rocket to the International Space Station (ISS) is important for at least three primary reasons. First, because the vehicle carries about 5,000 pounds of supplies (including food and new spacesuits) to ISS aboard its Dragon capsule. The station currently houses a six-man crew -- Oleg Artemyev, Alexander Skvortsov and Mikhail Tyurin of Russia; Rick Mastracchio and Steve Swanson of the United States; and Koichi Wakata of Japan.

Harris Seeks to Maintain Leadership in Global Defense Communications Markets

Author: Philip Finnegan, Drawn From: Defense & Aerospace Companies Briefing

 Harris Seeks to Maintain Leadership in Global Defense Communications Markets

Harris is seeking to maintain its leadership in global defense communications markets while pursuing opportunities to grow in public safety communications. International markets are a particular priority.

12 May 2014

Collier Trophy Finalists: X-47B and PurePower GTF Engine

Author: Richard L. Aboulafia, Drawn From: World Military & Civil Aircraft Briefing

The National Aeronautic Association Collier Trophy Committee is a great place to see present-day glimpses of our industry's future, and this year I was privileged to serve on it for a third time. There were two finalists, Northrop Grumman's X-47B (the winner) and Pratt & Whitney's PurePower Geared Turbofan (GTF) engine, which superbly illustrated two radically different aspects of our future.

02 May 2014

Injunction on RD-180 Engine Sales May Have Broader Implications

Author: Marco A. Cáceres, Drawn From: World Space Systems Briefing

US Court of Federal Claims Judge Susan Braden's injunction on Wednesday prohibiting United Launch Alliance (ULA) of Denver, Colorado, from procuring more RD-180 liquid-fuel engines from NPO Energomash (through the US-Russian joint venture RD AMROSS) could have much broader implications for the United States than first meets the eye. 

24 March 2014

The Case for a Scaled-up Successor to the Boeing 757

Author: Richard L. Aboulafia, Drawn From: World Military & Civil Aircraft Briefing

At last month's Singapore Airshow, Boeing executives discussed the 200-280-seat segment as a potential market for the company's next new jet. Airbus also has examined a new jet in this class. There are valid reasons to believe this will be the next new jetliner that one or both companies pursue, and that it will open a pivotal battleground.

05 March 2014

Ariane 5ME Will Replace Ariane 5ECA by 2020

Author: Marco A. Cáceres, Drawn From: World Space Systems Briefing

Ariane 5ME Will Replace Ariane 5ECA by 2020

Ariane 5ME (Midlife Evolution) is a proposed European solid- and liquid-fueled, heavy-lift expendable launch vehicle. It was originally known as the Ariane 5ECB (Evolution Cryotechnique type B). The vehicle is being designed as an upgrade to the Ariane 5ECA rocket and intended as a bridge to the next-generation Ariane 6, which is scheduled to enter service in 2021. Plans call for the first qualification flight of the Ariane 5ME in mid-2018. The designated launch site is the Guiana Space Center in Kourou, French Guiana.

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