The INSIDER daily digest -- April 3, 2024

By John Liang / April 3, 2024 at 3:21 PM

This Wednesday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Navy's F/A-18 fighter aircraft plus coverage of the electronic warfare suite for the F-15 Eagle completing initial operational test and evaluation and more.

In FY-24, the Navy forecasted a five-year plan to invest $11.7 billion to launch an air dominance program and define a follow-on to the F/A-18E/F. The FY-25 budget request zeroes out funding for the same project line entirely:

Navy rips $11.7B from F/A-XX, putting project in budget limbo after 12 years of study

The Navy has put on ice plans for a next-generation fighter aircraft, stripping nearly $12 billion from its five-year plan for the F/A-XX project, indicating funds previously programmed for future years were redirected to finance higher priorities and the new-start project will now have to compete anew in the fiscal year 2026 budget cycle for resources.

The Navy will keep pursuing additional technical data owned by Boeing suppliers to continue long-term sustainment of the F/A-18 aircraft:

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.

The Air Force's F-15 Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System is meant to bring improved radar warning, geolocation, situational awareness, self-protection and jamming to the legacy aircraft as the service prepares its fighter fleet for a potential fight in the Indo-Pacific:

F-15 EPAWSS competes IOT&E, fielding to kickoff this year

The Air Force has completed initial operational test and evaluation for the F-15 Eagle Passive Active Warning Survivability System, which will provide upgraded electronic warfare capabilities to the fighter jet on schedule, according to a news release from EPAWSS manufacturer BAE Systems.

The Navy secretary has released a one-page summary of the service's 45-day shipbuilding review:

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.

Document: SECNAV's 45-day shipbuilding review

Army budget justification documents state the service plans to spend $255 million to procure the IVAS systems and another $100 million to procure 2,364 Enhanced Night Vision Goggle-Binocular systems in FY-25:

Army's IVAS procurement for FY-25 will be for 1.2 variant

The Army's fiscal year 2025 budget request includes funding for more than 5,600 night vision devices, including 3,162 of the newest variant of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS).

The Defense Department issued its 2024 Commercial Space Integration Strategy this week:

DOD releases Commercial Space Integration Strategy

The Defense Department today 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.

Document: DOD's commercial space integration strategy