The INSIDER daily digest -- Nov. 9, 2023

By John Liang / November 9, 2023 at 1:59 PM

This Thursday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the AUKUS program, the Pentagon's counter-drone efforts, delays to two Space Force programs and more.

The U.S., U.K. and Australia aim to begin delivering the new submarines in the late 2030s, following the transfer of at least three Virginia-class submarines to Australia:

Canberra to announce SSN-AUKUS 'shipbuilding partner' within the next year

Within the next year, the Australian government will announce the "shipbuilding partner" that will build the future SSN-AUKUS submarine and help to develop the vessel's requirements, an Australian Navy official said today at the Naval Submarine League Symposium.

A demonstration will take place in New Mexico next June and will involve pitting anywhere from 20 to 50 small UAS, which are meant to simulate enemy aircraft, against candidate counter-drone technologies:

Counter-swarm demonstration next year will incorporate AI, ML

The Pentagon's Joint Counter-small Unmanned Aircraft System Office plans to incorporate artificial intelligence and machine learning into a demonstration planned for next summer focusing on UAS swarms.

The Next Generational Operational Control System for Global Positioning System satellites is now expected to be operational by early summer next year, while the Advanced Tracking and Launch Analysis System, which was expected to be operational by the end of this year, has been delayed until August next year:

Space Force's OCX and ATLAS programs face schedule delays

A top Space Force official has announced new timelines for two of the service's major programs that have been delayed by several months.

The X-37B Mission 7 is a collaboration between the Air Force Rapid Capabilities Office and the Space Force that will launch on the SpaceX Falcon Heavy rocket from Kennedy Space Center, FL:

X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle to launch next month to expand space domain awareness

The Space Force announced yesterday that the seventh mission of the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle will lift off on Dec. 7 to advance the service's knowledge of the space environment.

Since the beginning of the year, the Army has been increasing its production of 155mm rounds, due initially to the Ukraine war. Service acquisition chief Doug Bush told reporters during a roundtable at the Pentagon this week that as it stands, Congress has given the Army “a path” to produce 75,000 to 80,000 rounds per month:

Bush: Without supplemental funding, U.S. won't reach artillery ramp-up goal

Army acquisition chief Doug Bush said Tuesday that the more than $3 billion designated for increased 155mm artillery production and modernization of production facilities will be required if the service is to meet its goal of producing 100,000 rounds per month by late 2025.