Archive for May, 2009

Not a (war)ship


Originally uploaded by sirakwftvnews

The USNS General Hoyt S Vandenberg was sunk today to become an artificial reef off of Key West.

Contrary to some reports she was NOT a WARSHIP. She was a former Liberty troop transport during World War 2, and was saved from the scrapyard in the 60’s to become a range support ship for the DOD and then supported NASA.

If you want to dive on a real ‘warship’ – go farther north from Key West towards Pensacola. The World War 2 Essex-class aircraft carrier, the Oriskany, was sunk 20 odd miles off shore – and its island is accessible to recreation certified divers.


Contract air to air refueling

While the Pentagon takes its sweet time to determine what is going to be done with the US Air Force tanker program – the US Navy has gone out and contracted with a private firm to provide aerial refueling for Navy training activities.

Omega Air Refueling operates 3 aircraft (two Boeing 707’s and one DC-10) in support of their contract with the government. This contract is just the flying hours of the aircraft. The responsible party (i.e. squadron) for the receiving aircraft is responsible for the cost of the actual fuel (and can use their government credit card – just as if they were buying fuel during a cross-country or TDY).

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So what’s going on with the Tanker buy?

The President’s first 100 days are over – and still no word on what is going to happen with one of the most watched Pentagon acquisition programs in years.

The Air Force tanker program (to replace the aging KC-135’s).

SecDef Robert Gates has said he opposes a ‘dual buy’ (some from Airbus and some from Boeing) option.

There isn’t a even a concrete ‘dual buy’ proposal on the table, only suggestions from some Senate subcommittee chairmen as a way to break the impasse. And even then – the actual committee chairmen have not yet decided other than to wait to see what the Pentagon proposes.

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