Volume 04, Issue 11
|Integrated Defense Systems|
KC-135 maintenance transformed
Through a series of Lean initiatives implemented at Boeing Support Systems in San Antonio earlier this year and scheduled for full implementation at Pemco's Birmingham, Ala., facility this fall, the team is accelerating the aircraft's return, thereby enhancing the customer's capabilities.
Bon voyage, indeed
If they hurry, visitors to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, can observe a marvel of modern technology—the Sea-Based X-Band Radar—while it is temporarily moored in the famous harbor undergoing refurbishment and a much-needed paint job. Its radar is so sensitive that "if a baseball were launched on the West Coast, it could be detected on the East Coast by this radar."
Late last year, the 50,000-ton SBX, a modified oil-drilling vessel, made its way from Corpus Christi, Texas, around South America, and through the South Pacific Ocean to Hawaii. A component of the U.S. Missile Defense Agency's Ground-Based Midcourse Defense program, the SBX provides tracking, discrimination and hit-assessment functions.
Peace through strength
Boeing Integrated Defense Systems showed its ability to integrate technological advancements with multiple interactive demonstrations at the recent Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Fla. These demonstrations showed the value of future interoperability between airborne battle managers, communications systems and global strike assets.
The highlight of the Boeing exhibit at the event was a linked demonstration
of four Boeing programs that actively shared data. Networking an Airborne
Warning and Control System (AWACS) 40/45 operator console, a Joint Unmanned
Combat Air Systems (J-UCAS) Mission Control Station and an F-15E+ Strike
Eagle cockpit—and linking them together with the Transformational
Communications Demonstration Capability—these demos highlighted
the symposium's theme, "Forging the Interdependent Force."
Show and tell
It's mid-2005. One hundred miles off the coast of California , the Nimitz-class USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) is readying itself for first-ever deployment. Its mission: to serve the United States in peace, to defend the nation in the event of war, and to act as a cornerstone for joint and allied operations during times of crisis. Boeing supports that mission through products such as the carrier's F/A-18 Hornets and Super Hornets and other work of Boeing Integrated Defense Systems.
On the carrier, members of F/A-18 program management watch U.S. Navy and Marine Corps pilots, many flying the Boeing-built aircraft, make their first attempts at landing and taking off from the deck of the Reagan. Pilots must acquire six daytime landings and two "touch and goes," and four nighttime landings as the last step in attaining full qualifications. Each attempt counts in their overall rating, and the task is daunting—even for experienced pilots who are there to requalify.
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