The INSIDER daily digest -- Feb. 9, 2018

By John Liang  
February 9, 2018 at 1:56 PM

This Friday INSIDER Daily Digest highlights the effect of tax legislation on defense contractors, a new DOD cloud services contract plus a slew of Air Force news.

A look at the effect of tax legislation on defense contractors:

Defense contracting executives insist companies will be able to retain boost from tax legislation

The new tax legislation passed late last year has been hailed by many business executives, who argue the changes will help them invest in their workers and new technology.

An Amazon Web Services partner has been awarded a DOD cloud services contract:

DOD issues $950 million cloud services contract to Amazon reseller

The Defense Department has awarded a contract worth up to $950 million for cloud services to an Amazon Web Services partner, but says the award is unrelated to a high-level steering group's plans for accelerating cloud adoption across the department.

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Defense Secretary Jim Mattis briefed reporters yesterday on the potential military budget boost:

Mattis pledges to 'wisely' spend potential budget boost as Hill debate continues

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis, citing an ongoing Pentagon audit, pledged today to "wisely" spend the $165 billion in additional defense funding Congress is poised to grant the Defense Department in fiscal years 2018 and 2019.

The Air Force wing commanders who oversee command-and-control systems are concerned current equipment and training could become irrelevant by 2040:

C2 stakeholders craft recommendations to keep systems relevant

Air Force officials plan to recommend a slate of tactical and training changes by Feb. 11, following a study on the future of command-and-control assets at Nellis Air Force Base, NV.

The Defense Department recently sent a report to Congress outlines DOD's efforts to upgrade training ranges across the services:

DOD investing in range improvements to support F-35 IOT&E

The Defense Department is in the midst of several test and training range upgrades in preparation for F-35 initial operational test and evaluation as well as to support the fifth-generation aircraft's long-term range needs.

Document: DOD's national test and training range improvements strategic plan

The Pentagon's latest OT&E report looks at the Small Diameter Bomb II and Distributed Common Ground System programs:

Air Force to field SDB II software upgrades to improve accuracy

As Raytheon's Small Diameter Bomb II moves through its test program, the new weapon performed well against moving targets but still had problems hitting static and maritime targets, the Pentagon's director of operational test and evaluation said in his annual report published last month.

DCGS program office says fixes improving intel processing capabilities

Air Force Distributed Common Ground System officials say the director of operational test and evaluation's latest findings on the program are outdated because he did not account for recent software updates and new system baselines.

Check out Inside Defense's full DOT&E report coverage →

An Air Force Space Defense Task Force over the last year has been working closely with the teams in charge of two key efforts: Enterprise Space Battle Management Command and Control and Enterprise Ground Services:

SMC task force aims to improve, inform enterprise software development

As the Space and Missile Systems Center works to establish a more enterprise-focused approach to operational command and control, a Space Defense Task Force is working to incorporate new software development and delivery concepts and to ensure that those deliveries are cybersecure.

The Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile is now fully operational on the F-15E, according to Lockheed Martin:

JASSM-ER declared operational on F-15E with new flight software

Lockheed Martin said this week the extended-range variant of its Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile reached full operational capability on the F-15E, and the company is looking to finalize a Lot 16 production contract this year.

The Air Force awarded initial Data Link Enterprise contracts to nine companies in early January and expects to award contracts for a technology demonstration by the third quarter of this year:

Air Force creates marketplace to boost data link research

The Air Force is establishing a marketplace to support research and development across its data link enterprise.