Thursday, May 7, 2009

Official 2010 U.S. defense budget cuts announced

SAVE The F-22: Major 2010 Defense budget cuts announce

Before the news article, here is some great information on the F-22 and a very cool video.

Uber Stealth: Top Fighters Across the Globe

F-22 Raptor - United States

Air Superiority is the name of the game when it comes to laying the groundwork for invasion or defense. More than any other fighter in the world, the F-22 Raptor exemplifies air superiority.
Perhaps the best example of how confident the United States Air Force is in their F-22 lies within their own website.

They state that the F-22 “is designed to project air dominance, rapidly and at great distances and defeat threats attempting to deny access to our nation’s Air Force, Army, Navy and Marine Corps.”

“The F-22A cannot be matched by any known or projected fighter aircraft.”

Pretty bold statements. Judging by this website and the video below, they may just be more fact than opinion:

FACTBOX-Major weapon changes in 2010 U.S. defense budget
from Reuters
Thu May 7, 2009 2:56pm EDT

WASHINGTON, May 7 (Reuters) - The Pentagon on Thursday sent Congress a fiscal 2010 budget plan that shifts funding to focus more on irregular warfare and take better care of troops, while cutting back or canceling several major weapons programs.

Some of the recommendations, which must still be approved by Congress, call for:

- Zero funding for an alternate engine being developed by General Electric Co (GE.N) and Rolls-Royce Group Plc (RR.L) for the F-35 fighter jet, a project initiated by Congress in 1996. The program has already received $2.5 billion in funding from Congress despite repeated Pentagon attempts at cancellation.

- Termination of the VH-71 presidential helicopter program being developed by Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) and its partner AgustaWestland, a unit of Italy's Finmeccanica SpA (SIFI.MI), a program that had threatened to double in cost to over $13 billion.

- Cancellation of a $15 billion Air Force competition for new Air Force combat search and rescue helicopters while military requirements are studied. Lockheed, Boeing Co (BA.N), and Sikorsky Aircraft, part of United Technologies Corp (UTX.N), have been competing for the work for several years.

Instead, the Air Force proposed spending $90 million for 2 HH-60M Pave Hawk helicopters built by Sikorsky to replenish its current search and rescue helicopter fleet.

- Cancellation of $87 billion in funding for the ground vehicle portion of the Army's Future Combat Systems (FCS) modernization program, a program run by Boeing and Science Applications International Corp (SAI.N). Army officials also said they would present a proposal for replacement vehicles by early September and seek to renegotiate the terms of the overall FCS contract in the near term.

- Cuts of $1.2 billion in funding from the missile defense program, with the lion's share of the cuts coming from the Ground-based Midcourse Defense (GMD) system built by Boeing, and the Patriot PAC-3 missile program run by Raytheon Co (RTN.N) and Lockheed. Officials said they also canceled funding for the Kinetic Energy Interceptor being developed by Northrop Grumman Corp (NOC.N).

- No funding for additional F-22 fighter jets built by Lockheed and Boeing, with the Air Force earmarking $64 million to begin closing the F-22 production line.

- Termination of the DDG-1000 destroyer after three ships instead of the seven planned, with General Dynamics Corp (GD.N) to build all three of the destroyers at its shipyard in Bath, Maine. Instead, the Navy plans to build six more DDG-51 Aegis destroyers, with that work slated to start at Northrop's Gulf coast shipyard.

- The budget also includes $431 million in "seed money" to begin a revamped aerial refueling aircraft competition between Boeing and Northrop. Officials said they expected to award a new contract in the spring of 2010.

- The budget did not include any funding for development work on a new long-range bomber, but added $500 million for upgrades to existing bombers and some $700 million for development of new radars for the B-1, B-2 and B-52 bombers.

- The budget had no funding for new Boeing C-17 transport planes, but added $91 million to begin the shutdown of the Boeing production line. That money could be cut by Congress if a measure contained in a House appropriations measure, which adds eight C-17s to the 2009 war spending bill, is approved. (Reporting by Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)
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