Inside these posts: U.S. Air Force

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Boeing, EADS launch refueling tanker lobbying blitz

Even by Pentagon standards, it’s an eye-popping prize: a $35 billion contract to build nearly 200 giant airborne refueling tankers. And the decade-long brawl by two defense industry titans to win it has been just as epic.

In a matter of weeks — if not days — the Pentagon will announce whether Chicago-based Boeing Co. or European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company will build 179 new tankers to replace the Air Force’s Eisenhower-era KC-135 planes. Get the full story »

Senators slam Air Force over $35B tanker contract

Senators from both parties lambasted the U.S. Air Force after military officials acknowledged that they’d accidentally disclosed secret data to competitors Boeing and EADS as part of their effort to award a $35 billion contract to build a new fleet of aerial refueling tankers.

At a hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., called the incident “a debacle” and asked what punitive action had been taken. She said those involved in the error should be fired. Get the full story »

Unmanned Boeing spacecraft completes 7-month mission

An unmanned U.S. Air Force spacecraft made by Boeing, with a vaguely defined military mission, landed early Friday in California after a seven-month mission, officials said.

The X-37B, the U.S. Air Force’s first unmanned re-entry spacecraft, landed at Vandenberg Air Force Base at 3:16 a.m., according to an Air Force statement. The orbital spacecraft “conducted on-orbit experiments for more than 220 days during its maiden voyage,” the statement said. Get the full story »

Pentagon: ‘Clerical error’ won’t hurt tanker bid

Bloomberg | Chicago-based Boeing Co. and European Aeronautic, Defense and Space Co. shouldn’t see any significant fallout from a “clerical error” releasing some data on their bids for a $35 billion aerial tanker program, the Defense Department said. The Air Force disclosed Nov. 19 that the service mistakenly provided Boeing and EADS with “a limited amount” of data on the offers that are now under government review.

EADS open to adjusting U.S. tanker bid

European aerospace group EADS is open to adjusting the price of its refueling aircraft bid if the Air Force asks for final proposal changes, but will still see significant profit from the bid, the company’s U.S. chairman said on Tuesday.

The Air Force has been evaluating rival bids from EADS and Boeing in a competition valued at up to $50 billion, since July, with an eye to awarding a contract this fall. Get the full story »

EADS offer lower prices in tanker bid

European Aeronautic Defence & Space Co.  will offer prices below its previous ones in order to win a contract to provide the U.S. Air Force with new aerial refueling tankers, German daily Financial Times Deutschland reports Monday, citing industry sources. Get the full story »

EADS makes bid on $35B Air Force tanker contract

Airbus parent EADS has submitted a bid to supply refueling tankers to the U.S. Air Force, the company said Thursday.

“We’re proud of our offering, which is the only one in this competition that is flying and refueling the full array of receiver aircraft,” EADS North America Chairman Ralph Crosby said in a statement. Get the full story »

WTO ruling against Airbus may help Boeing tanker

A B-2 bomber gets refueled over the Pacific. (AP Photo/Master Sgt. Mark Sindiong.)

From Business Week | The WTO’s ruling Wednesday that European governments provided illegal subsidies to Airbus SAS, may make it easier for Congress to select Boeing Co.’s bid in the long-running fight for a $35 billion contract to build refueling tanker for the U.S. Air Force, some analysts have said.

Boeing receives $216M contract to upgrade tankers

Boeing Co. said Wednesday it received a $216 million contract from the U.S. Air Force to upgrade the cockpits in 59 KC-10 tanker aircraft. The upgrades will outfit the aircraft with new communication, navigation, surveillance and air traffic management systems.