Defense Business Briefing -- April 9, 2024

Welcome to today's Defense Business Briefing, your weekly roundup of the latest defense industry news.

This week's top story

Enterprise delay due to supply chain, HII CEO says

Supply chain issues are largely to blame for the potential 18-to-26-month delay facing the future Ford-class aircraft carrier Enterprise (CVN-80), according to HII CEO and President Chris Kastner.

News & notes

Shield AI to acquire Australian AI company for AUKUS Pillar II

Shield AI, a U.S. defense technology company, announced its definitive agreement to acquire Sentient Vision Systems, an Australian artificial intelligence company, citing its focus on Pillar II of the AUKUS security agreement.

DIU selects eight companies to develop RCV software

The Defense Innovation Unit announced yesterday it has selected Anduril Industries, Overland AI and Palantir Technologies and added them to five companies previously selected to develop autonomous systems for the service's Robotic Combat Vehicle.

DOD searching for robotic partners and human machine interfaces

The Pentagon, through the experimental event series Thunderstorm 24-3, is searching for innovative solutions on robotic partners and human-machine interfaces that can excel in various operational conditions.

Biden seeks $6.6 billion in CHIPS and Science Act funding for new chip factory

The Biden administration announced today a proposed $6.6 billion in direct funding under the CHIPS and Science Act to be directed to a preliminary agreement between the Commerce Department and the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) to build a third chip factory in Arizona.

Navy gains more access to F/A-18 technical data

The Navy now has additional access to Boeing's F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler technical data, allowing the service to support full sustainment of the aircraft.

Navy shipbuilding review details delays across submarine and ship acquisition portfolio

Delivery of the lead Columbia-class submarine is now expected to occur at least a year later than initially planned, while Virginia-class submarines are more than two years behind their contracted schedule, according to a Navy shipbuilding review that identifies significant schedule challenges across the service's ship and submarine portfolio.

DOD releases Commercial Space Integration Strategy

The Defense Department has released its Commercial Space Integration Strategy that gives a roadmap of how the U.S. military can leverage commercial space in each of its space mission areas.

BAE awarded $79 million for three ACV-R test vehicles

Contractor BAE Systems has received a $79 million contract modification to produce three production-representative test vehicles for the Amphibious Combat Vehicle Recovery variant, according to a Pentagon announcement.

What's happening

The week ahead

The week ahead is packed with events including numerous congressional hearings and two large conferences featuring senior Pentagon officials.

For Inside Defense subscribers

Congress mulls shipbuilding delays ahead of Navy budget hearing

With the Navy's highest-ranking officials set to appear before Congress this week for their first fiscal year 2025 budget hearing, lawmakers are weighing the implications of a new shipbuilding review that identified months-long delays across critical acquisition programs.

Patriot Mods program big winner in new Army five-year plan, nearly $3 billion boost

The Army has set new plans to triple annual spending on Patriot Modifications in fiscal year 2027 as part of a $3 billion increase over five years to improve the capability and readiness of the air defense system, a 174% hike compared to the current future years defense program.