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By Debbie Gregory.

The V-280 Valor tiltrotor prototype, developed by Bell Helicopters to replace both the Apache and Black Hawk helicopters in the Army’s fleet is just about ready to take to the skies.

The aircraft was officially unveiled at the 2013 Army Aviation Association of America’s (AAAA) Annual Professional Forum and Exposition in Fort Worth, TX

A partnership between Bell and Lockheed Martin has resulted in the V-280, a major upgrade to the Army’s rotary aircraft fleet.

According to Bell’s website, the Valor, a third-generation tilt-rotor aircraft, provides warfighters strategic options, operational reach and tactical agility.

Special emphasis has been placed on reducing the weight of the V-280 in order to reduce cost. To do this, composites have been used extensively in the wing, fuselage, and tail. Wing skins and ribs are made of a honeycomb-stiffened “sandwich” construction with large-cell carbon cores for fewer, larger, and lighter parts. Skins and ribs are paste-bonded together to eliminate fasteners.

The design makes the copter twice as fast and able to operate at twice the range as the UH-60 Black Hawk. The Valor is capable of hauling 23% more troops and 25% more cargo.

The design features integrated cabin armor, fly-by-wire component redundancy, state of the art countermeasures and performance.

With more than twice the speed and range of current helicopter platforms, the Bell V-280 Valor provides access to get to the objective while providing superior agility at the objective.

Team Valor’s mission equipment package enables en-route situational understanding through digitally fused reconnaissance, surveillance, intelligence and friendly force information. Airborne battle boards bring fused data and mission updates to the cabin for real-time tracking

The Valor will soon undergo initial ground testing at the company’s assembly center in Amarillo, Texas. The company will then move to unrestrained ground runs. When everything is determined ready to go, Bell will fly the helicopter for the first time, which will likely be a low hover over the ground.

By Debbie Gregory.

On August 11th , the U.S. Marine Corps issued a Notice of Intent to Sole Source for more than 50,000 new M27 Infantry Automatic Rifles from German gun-maker Heckler & Koch. The notice was posted on the website Federal Business Opportunities.

This has raised speculation that some within the service branch want to replace the M4 with the M27.

With the M27 costing upwards of $3,000 a rifle, this is a sizable purchase. And the Marine Corp has already bought thousands of the rifles earlier this year.

While weapon vendors were invited to pitch their latest weapons technologies, including new suppressors, optics, etc., Heckler & Koch apparently remained the best option for the Corps.

Based on the HK416, the M27 is chambered for a 5.56mm round and carried by Marine automatic riflemen, though officials have discussed the possibility of fielding the weapon as the new service rifle for all or most infantrymen rather than the M4. The HK416 was recently adopted by the French army.

Faced with fulfilling three major contracts (the U.S. Army’s possible purchase of 7.62mm Interim Combat Service Rifle, the French Army’s contract, and the Marine’s contract) Heckler & Koch’s manufacturing capacity has been questioned.

While a contract for 50,000 rifles would not be enough to equip every Marine with an M27, but it would be a start.

This summer, the Corps began a 20-month-long experiment involving an “Uber Squad” at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, to test out gear including suppressors, polymer drum mags and special operations-issue hearing protection, as well as the M27.


By Debbie Gregory.

Due to a potential gap in the capability of ground forces and infantry to penetrate body armor using existing ammunition, the U.S. Army is looking for an Interim Combat Service Rifle (ICSR) to address this need.

The competition for a new 7.62mm Interim Service Combat Rifle will result in up to eight contracts, procuring seven types of weapons from each gunmaker for evaluating and testing.

At the end of the testing, the Army “may award a single follow-on Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) based contract for the production of up to 50,000 weapons,” according to a solicitation on FedBizOpps.gov.

The service’s present plan is to evaluate the submissions against a three main factors, which are, in order of importance, the features of the “bid sample” itself, the production capability of the vendor or vendors, and the price.

The Interim Combat Service Rifle should have either 16-inch or 20-inch barrels, a collapsible buttstock, an extended forward rail and weigh less than 12 pounds unloaded and without an optic.

There is definitely a need for this sort of weapon. For years, critics have complained that insurgents and terrorists with Soviet-era weapons had better range and terminal ballistics than their American counterparts armed mainly with 5.56mm weapons.

Multiple proposals may be submitted by the same organization; however, each proposal must consist of the weapons, proposal, and System Safety Assessment Report. All proposals are due by 3 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday, September 6, 2017.

dump truck

The U.S. Army is shopping around for its next armored dump truck.

The U.S Army has plans to purchase 683 M917A3 armored dump trucks. To that end, try the service branch is inviting industry to compete for chance to build these new armored dump trucks.

The new M917A3 requires a max payload of 27 tons on primary and secondary roads. The crew cab and underbody armor protection should be capable of being changed out separately based on the mission without affecting performance.

According to the May 26 solicitation, page the Army intends to award a Single-Source Award, information pills Firm-Fixed Price, Seven-year Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity commercial contract for the dump truck.

The solicitation states: “The Army requires units with dependable and deployable M917A3s that have reduced operations and support costs and increased operational effectiveness and readiness over existing systems. This is critical to support the Joint Forces as they conduct more operations in areas of the world with austere infrastructures and little or no host nation support. The M917A3 will be capable of supporting mobility, counter mobility, survivability and sustainment operations.”

The Contract Data Requirements packet is 121 pages and is available for downloading at govtribe.com. Responses are due July 25

The last time the Army purchased new dump trucks was in 17 years ago when it awarded a $400 million contract to Freightliner LLC to build almost 3,400 M917A2s, as well as M915A3 line haul tractors and M916A3 light equipment transporters.

Deadline is tomorrow: The Naval Special Warfare Development Group (NSWDG) has a requirement to procure the following:

Section B Schedule of Supplies and Services

CLIN 0001 10′ x 10′ wire rope blast shields – 5/8″ (6 x 19) galvanized wire rope construction
Qty – 4 each

Interested vendors may send quotations by 2 PM EST, 28 Dec’16; and are to be submitted via one of the following methods:

Electronic Mail (E-Mail): [email protected]

FAX : 757-862-9478 (Attn: Josephine Ocampo)

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