Defense Business Briefing -- March 14, 2023

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

This week's top story

DOD Office of Strategic Capital to ink new agreement with Small Business Administration

The Defense Department's recently established Office of Strategic Capital intends to sign a memorandum of agreement with the Small Business Administration's Office of Investment and Innovation to help increase early-stage private investment in critical technologies, according to a Pentagon announcement.

News & notes

GE still touting new engine as Air Force moves away from AETP for F-35

General Electric has doubled down on its belief that it has the best solution for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter engine update despite the Air Force's decision not to move forward with an Adaptive Engine Transition Program.

Reagan Institute releases 'National Security Innovation Base Report Card'

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute has released a "National Security Innovation Base Report Card," giving the Pentagon poor grades when it comes to providing "clarity" to defense contractors and for failing to expand its pipeline for technological talent.

Boeing and Shield AI to partner on autonomous capability development

DENVER -- Boeing and Shield AI have signed an agreement to collaborate on autonomous capability development and artificial intelligence on defense programs, the companies announced at the Air and Space Forces Association Warfare Symposium.

What's happening

The week ahead

Senior defense officials are slated to speak on Capitol Hill and at industry events this week, which is also expected to feature the release of more specific details on the fiscal year 2024 defense budget request.

For Inside Defense subscribers

DOD says 0.8% 'real growth' budget sufficient for China-focused strategy; supplemental likely for Ukraine

Senior Pentagon officials said the fiscal year 2024 budget request represents less than 1% real growth above what Congress enacted for FY-23 but asserted that the topline is sufficient to implement a National Defense Strategy focused on deterring China.

Pentagon budget request eyes key munitions investments for bulk buys

The Pentagon is requesting $170 billion for procurement in fiscal year 2024, with $30.6 billion slated for missiles and munitions, focusing on weapon systems with industrial base shortfalls highlighted by the ongoing war in Ukraine and also on those that could deter China from acting militarily against Taiwan.

Vacating mid-band for commercial 5G would cost DOD at least $120 billion and take 20 years

The Pentagon estimates it will cost at least $120 billion and 20 years to vacate the mid-band electromagnetic spectrum being eyed for auction to telecommunications companies developing the 5G commercial market and put at risk military capabilities that currently use S-band systems such as the Aegis radar and assured navigation and more for strategic missions.