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Navy to Christen Littoral Combat Ship St. Louis

Navy to Christen Littoral Combat Ship St. Louis

WASHINGTON (NNS) — The Navy will christen its newest Freedom-variant littoral combat ship, USS St. Louis (LCS 19), during a 10 a.m. CST ceremony Saturday, Dec. 15, in Marinette, Wisconsin.

The future USS St. Louis, designated LCS 19, honors Missouri’s major port city along the Mississippi river. She will be the seventh ship to bear the name St. Louis. The first was a sloop of war, the second a Civil War gunboat, followed by a Spanish-American War-era steamer troop ship, a World War I cruiser, a World War II light cruiser, and a Cold War era attack cargo ship.

The principal speaker will be U.S. Sen. Roy Blunt from Missouri. Barbara Taylor, wife of Andy Taylor, chairman of Enterprise Holdings, the largest privately held company in St. Louis, will serve as the ship’s sponsor. In a time-honored Navy tradition, she will christen the ship by breaking a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow.

“The future USS St. Louis honors not just the great city of St. Louis, Missouri, but also the skilled industrial workforce who built this ship,” said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. “This christening marks the transition of USS St. Louis being a mere hull number to a ship with a name and a spirit, and is a testament to the increased lethality and readiness made possible by the combined effort between our industrial partners and the Navy and Marine Corps team.”

The future USS St. Louis is a fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments as well as the open-ocean. It is designed to defeat asymmetric “anti-access” threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.

Media may direct queries to the Navy Office of Information at (703) 697-5342. For more information about the Littoral Combat Ship class: http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=4200&tid=1650&ct=4

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DOD scaling up effort to develop hypersonics | Article

DOD scaling up effort to develop hypersonics | Article

A Defense Advanced Research Products Agency illustration depicts DARPA's Falcon Hypersonic Test Vehicle as it emerges from its rocket nose cone and prepares to re-enter the Earth's atmosphere. DARPA has conducted several test flights of the vehicle in recent years.
1 / 1 Show Caption + Hide Caption – A Defense Advanced Research Products Agency illustration depicts DARPA’s Falcon Hypersonic Test Vehicle as it emerges from its rocket nose cone and prepares to re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere. DARPA has conducted several test flights of the vehicle in recent years. (Photo Credit: DARPA illustration) VIEW ORIGINAL

WASHINGTON — The Defense Department is looking to step up its development of hypersonic weapons — missiles that travel more than five times faster than the speed of sound — DOD leaders said at the National Defense Industrial Association-sponsored “Hypersonics Senior Executive Series” here today.

“In the last year, China has tested more hypersonics weapons than we have in a decade,” said Michael Griffin, undersecretary of defense for research and engineering. “We’ve got to fix that.”

Russia also is involved in hypersonics, Griffin said. “Hypersonics is a game changer,” he added.

If Russia were to invade Estonia or China were to attack Taiwan tomorrow, Griffin said, it would be difficult to defend against their strike assets. “It’s not a space we want to stay in,” he told the audience.

DOD is looking at air-breathing boost-glide hypersonics systems, the latter being used by China, Griffin said. The United States has the boost-glide system competency to get these developed today, he noted.

On the flip side, he said, the U.S. needs to develop systems to counter adversary hypersonics. The place to take them out is in their relatively long cruise phase, in which they don’t change course suddenly. It’s not a particularly hard intercept, he said, but it requires knowing they’re coming. Current radars can’t see far enough. “They need to see thousands of kilometers out, not hundreds,” Griffin said.

The Western Pacific is a particularly difficult area, he noted, because “it’s not littered with a lot

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Artificial Intelligence Experts Address Getting Capabilities to Warfighters > U.S. Indo-Pacific Command > 2015

Artificial Intelligence Experts Address Getting Capabilities to Warfighters > U.S. Indo-Pacific Command > 2015

WASHINGTON — Two Defense Department artificial-intelligence experts testified on Capitol Hill yesterday on DOD’s efforts to transform delivery of capabilities enabled by artificial intelligence to the nation’s warfighters.

Lisa Porter, deputy undersecretary of defense for research and engineering, and Dana Deasy, DOD’s chief information officer, testified at a hearing of the House Armed Services Committee’s subcommittee on emerging threats and capabilities.

The John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2019 directed the defense secretary to conduct a comprehensive national review of advances in AI relevant to the needs of the military services. Section 238 directed the secretary to craft a strategic plan to develop, mature, adopt and transition AI technologies into operational use.

“Today we are experiencing an explosion of interest in a subfield of AI called machine learning, where algorithms have become remarkably good at classification and prediction tasks when they can be trained on very large amounts of data,” Porter told the House panel. Today’s AI capabilities offer potential solutions to many defense-specific problems, such as object identification in drone video or satellite imagery and detection of cyber threats on networks, she said.

However, she added, several issues must be addressed to effectively apply AI to national security mission problems.

“First, objective evaluation of performance requires the use of quantitative metrics that are relevant to the specific use case,” she said. “In other words, AI systems that have been optimized for commercial applications may not yield effective outcomes in military applications.”

Challenges, Vulnerabilities

DOD is working to address such challenges and vulnerabilities in multiple ways, she said, most of which will leverage the complementary roles of the new Joint Artificial Intelligence Center and the department’s research and engineering enterprise.

Second, Porter said, existing AI systems need enormous amounts of training data, and the preparation of

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USS Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group Returning Home

USS Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group Returning Home

NORFOLK (NNS) — Nearly 6,500 Sailors from the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (HSTCSG) are scheduled to return to Naval Station Norfolk, Dec. 16, after completing an eight-month deployment across the 2nd, 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation.

Led by Commander, Carrier Strike Group Eight, Rear Adm. Gene Black, returning units of HSTCSG include flagship USS Harry S. Truman, commanded by Capt. Nick Dienna; the nine squadrons of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1; guided-missile cruiser USS Normandy (CG 60); and guided-missile destroyers of Destroyer Squadron Two Eight (DESRON 28), including USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) and USS Forrest Sherman (DDG 98).

HSTCSG deployed April 11 for a regularly scheduled deployment as part of the ongoing rotation of forward deployed forces to support maritime security operations and operate in international waters across the globe. Several strike group units returned to Norfolk in mid-July for a working port visit, until late August, when they departed to continue their deployment. The strike group’s ships and aircraft conducted a variety of missions, including forward naval presence, maritime security operations and theater security cooperation and participation in numerous bilateral and multilateral operations and exercises to include exercises Lightning Handshake 2018, Baltic Operations 2018 and Trident Juncture 2018.

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Zama JROTC Places Second in Pacific East District Air Rifle Competition > U.S. Indo-Pacific Command > 2015

Zama JROTC Places Second in Pacific East District Air Rifle Competition > U.S. Indo-Pacific Command > 2015

CAMP ZAMA, Japan — A line of cadets have their sights fixed on their targets, each squaring their aim and breathing out before pulling the trigger. The distinct “Pop! Pop! Pop!” of a volley of air rifle rounds pierces the quiet of the scene.

The Zama American Middle High School Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps battalion placed second in the annual Pacific East District Three-Position Air Rifle Marksmanship Match, which they hosted Dec. 7 and 8.

Thirty-six cadets from three schools, also including Nile C. Kinnick High School from U.S. Fleet Activities Yokosuka, and Yokota High School, participated in the competition at both the varsity and junior varsity level. ZAMHS finished with a score of 1728, coming in just short of the winning Kinnick battalion’s 1810.4. Yokota finished third with a score of 1698.4.

The varsity match was a 3×20 format, meaning the competitors fired 20 shots from three positions: prone, standing and kneeling. The junior varsity match was 3×10 format.

In addition to ZAMHS placing second, one of the school’s varsity competitors, Cadet Maj. Ian Tan, a senior, had an impressive individual performance, taking second place in the overall shooter category with a score of 492.9.

Cadet Lt. Col. Daisy Dalat, a ZAMHS senior and battalion commander, lauded her team of six varsity and five junior varsity shooters, saying all the practicing they did translated to a great result when it came time for the match.

“Our team has been making improvements little by little all year,” said Daisy. “Being in this competition provided our team with a good opportunity to observe how other teams are doing, and to get advice from them.”

Cadet Toni Ludwig, a junior at Kinnick High School, was the top overall shooter with a score of 552. Toni said she has aspirations to compete

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AFIMSC Innovation Office seeks game-changing ideas > U.S. Air Force > Article Display

AFIMSC Innovation Office seeks game-changing ideas > U.S. Air Force > Article Display

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO–LACKLAND, Texas (AFNS) — The Air Force Installation and Mission Support Center Innovation Office will launch a program in the new year to help Airmen implement their innovative ideas. The campaign, open Jan. 1-31, 2019, gives military and civilian members of mission support groups worldwide a chance to fund their ideas and partner with innovation experts.

“Our office focuses on an idea, and our goal is to collaborate across the enterprise and help lead the idea towards implementation” said Marc Vandeveer, AFIMSC chief innovation officer. “If we don’t implement, we’re not adding value to the organization.”

Ideas can be submitted though the online collaboration tool Ideascale at https://usaf.ideascalegov.com/a/campaign-home/39.

“Let’s get those brilliant ideas submitted from our civil engineer, security forces, logistics readiness, communications, force support and contracting squadrons,” Vandeveer said.

Full-time innovation specialists with the innovation office will collaborate with Airmen to refine their ideas. AFIMSC will fund some directly; compete others through the $600-million Small Business Innovation and Research Program; and take the three best ideas to compete in an official AFWERX Challenge in 2019, each funded with $200,000 to connect with global experts, start-ups and venture capitalists to prototype and implement.

“When the field submits an idea or challenge, it just doesn’t sit on someone’s desk,” Vandeveer said. “We put money against it and solve problems.”

The AFIMSC enterprise is at the forefront of innovation, said Brig. Gen. Brian Bruckbauer, expeditionary support director.

“We definitely feel the momentum building, and we’re finally making a name for ourselves,” Bruckbauer said. “Operations understands that installation and mission support is a big deal.”

The AFWERX program encourages partnerships with academic institutions, science and technology communities, and private industries with a vested interest in solving complex security issues.

“The goal is to enable Airmen to accomplish their mission

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NEX Bahrain Wins 2017 Bingham Award!

NEX Bahrain Wins 2017 Bingham Award!

MANAMA, Bahrain (NNS) — The Navy Exchange (NEX) Bahrain was recently awarded the 2017 Bingham Award in a ceremony at the Freedom Souq Dec. 13.  

According to Navy.mil, the Bingham Award was established in 1979 to “recognize outstanding performance in operations, customer service and community support.”

“The staff is thrilled and proud to win again. We enjoy providing merchandise and services in a pleasant environment which reminds folks of home,” said Dan Cougevan, general manager of NEX Bahrain, United Arab Emirates and Djibouti. “It’s a recognition for superior results in financial performance, customer service and associate satisfaction. It’s wonderful to be recognized as being the Best in Class amongst your peer NEXs. NEX Bahrain joins a long list of Naval Support Activity Bahrain departments who have been recognized for providing excellent service to the community.”

Out of the nine winning categories, the NEX Bahrain won category two, which encompasses sales of $35-70 million.

“We understand the importance of the NEX here in Bahrain as there’s no commissary. Our customers rely on the NEX for almost all of their most essential needs. We take our mission very seriously and are dedicated to provide world class customer service each and every day,” Cougevan added.

Previously, the NEX Bahrain won the 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2016 Bingham Awards, respectively.

“This award is presented to the best of the best NEXs in nine sales categories for overall financial results and customer service,” said Rear Adm. Robert J. Bianchi (Ret), chief executive officer of the Navy Exchange Service Command, in a Navy.mil article about the winners. “This award is presented to both the NEX and the local Navy command to recognize their partnership and commitment to support the quality of life of our military members and their families. Bravo Zulu to each of

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Under Secretary of the Navy Strengthens Alliances in Norway

Under Secretary of the Navy Strengthens Alliances in Norway

VAERNES, Norway (NNS) — Under Secretary of the Navy, Thomas Modly, completed a three-day partnership-building visit to Norway, Dec. 12.

Modly met with senior military and civilian officials to discuss security and stability issues and efforts along with touring some of the Norwegian assets and facilities.

Meetings were held with the U.S. ambassador, State Secretary of Defence, Chief of Royal Norwegian Navy, Commander of Norwegian Defence Liaison Office, members from the Royal Norwegian Air Force, Army and Navy, and U.S. Marines on rotation to Norway.

“The U.S. and Norway share a very close military relationship and collaborate on many global, regional and bilateral issues,” said Modly. “Being able to see it first hand was impressive and helped underscore the enduring value of investing in cooperative security relationships.”

During his visit, Modly toured a Royal Norwegian Navy Skjold class Corvette and Fridtjof Nansen class frigate and the facilities at the Marine Corps Pre-Positioning Program-Norway (MCPP-N).

“By working together with one of our closest allies, we create force multipliers that enhance our capabilities and build a better understanding of each other,” said Modly. “I look forward to fostering this relationship through our Navy and Marine Corps team.”

On his final day, Modly had the opportunity to have lunch and a discussion with some of the U.S. Marines from the Marine Rotational Force – Europe.

“Marine training in Norway improves cold weather and mountain readiness in Artic conditions,” said Modly. “It also enhances interoperability between U.S. And Norwegian forces.  Our marines are getting great training and building enduring relationships with their Norwegian partners.”

Modly is on a multination visit to the European region focused on strengthening partnerships and cooperation in support of the second line of effort of the National Defense Strategy: Strengthening Partnerships and Alliances.

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Navy Recruit Graduation: December 14, 2018

Navy Recruit Graduation: December 14, 2018

Welcome to Navy Live blog coverage of Recruit Training Command’s graduation, Pass-In-Review. It is a formal military ceremony that honors a Sailor’s hard work and dedication to a new way of life. Pass-In-Review also ties together the future of the Navy with our long-held naval traditions and customs.

Read how Recruit Training Command transforms civilians into Sailors – 38,000 of them each year.

The live video from the Navy’s only boot camp at Great Lakes, Illinois, is scheduled to begin 8:45 a.m. CST Dec. 14.

Congratulations Sailors and welcome aboard to the newest members of our Navy family!

Join in the story of four recruits as they make their way into the Navy through the training pipeline, never before so intimately profiled, of the Navy’s Recruit Training Command in All Hands Magazine’s documentary “Making a Sailor.”

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Like Clockwork: Task Force Spartan Soldiers a source of power, stability in the Middle East | Article

Like Clockwork: Task Force Spartan Soldiers a source of power, stability in the Middle East | Article

Staff Sgt. Tim Millican, squad leader for with Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 198th Armor Regiment, 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team, Task Force Spartan, engages the distant target with his M4 carbine during marksmanship and weapon familiarization training as part of Exercise Eastern Action, Nov. 10, 2018. Eastern Action 19 combines the U.S. and Qatar forces to build the trust and the cooperation between the two militaries.
1 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Staff Sgt. Tim Millican, squad leader for with Charlie Company, 2nd Battalion, 198th Armor Regiment, 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team, Task Force Spartan, engages the distant target with his M4 carbine during marksmanship and weapon familiarization training as part of Exercise Eastern Action, Nov. 10, 2018. Eastern Action 19 combines the U.S. and Qatar forces to build the trust and the cooperation between the two militaries. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Matthew Keeler) VIEW ORIGINAL
Fire erupts from the barrel of an M1 Abrams main battle tank, as Soldiers of the 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team, Task Force Spartan, engage targets during the Bright Star 18 combined arms live-fire exercise at Mohamed Naguib Military Base in Egypt. The tanks were part of the combined Egyptian, Greek and U.S. armed forces, which demonstrated their ability to work together in the field. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Matthew Keeler, with illustration by 1st Lt. Eric Jungels)
2 / 2 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Fire erupts from the barrel of an M1 Abrams main battle tank, as Soldiers of the 155th Armored Brigade Combat Team, Task Force Spartan, engage targets during the Bright Star 18 combined arms live-fire exercise at Mohamed Naguib Military Base in Egypt. The tanks were part of the combined Egyptian, Greek and U.S. armed forces, which demonstrated their ability to work together in the field. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Matthew Keeler, with illustration by 1st Lt. Eric Jungels) (Photo Credit: Staff Sgt. Matthew Keeler, 28th Infantry Division) VIEW ORIGINAL

ROSEMOUNT, Minn. — The perpetual rotor is arguably the most vital component of a watch. Without this stable, consistent power reserve, the second hand would tick forward irregularly, or worse, come to a halt entirely.

In the same way that a perpetual rotor is the driving force behind a watch’s precision, efficiency, and power, the Soldier remains the impetus of the U.S. Army’s capabilities and achievements. In the Middle East, each Soldier assigned to Task Force Spartan — successfully completing individual duties for one of a variety of units synchronized throughout the region — is contributing to the goals and output of a larger operation.

“Our Soldiers are competent in their craft and

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