The INSIDER daily digest -- Sept. 28, 2021

By John Liang / September 28, 2021 at 1:40 PM

This Tuesday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system, an upcoming flight test of the Air Force's X-61A airborne retrieval system and more.

The Senate Armed Services Committee, in its version of the fiscal year 2022 defense policy bill, is proposing a new requirement mandating MDA provide Congress and congressional auditors detailed “accountability matrices” that can be used to assess progress in the project to field by 2028 a new guided missile to protect the United States from long-range, nuclear-armed North Korean missiles:

Senate legislation would mandate exacting oversight of NGI development

Senate lawmakers want rigorous oversight measures imposed on the Next Generation Interceptor program -- the $17 billion acquisition launched after the Missile Defense Agency sank $1.2 billion and many years of development into the terminated Redesigned Kill Vehicle -- proposing new legislation mandating routine updates to Congress, including frequent independent cost and technical reviews.

An upcoming flight test of the X-61A airborne retrieval system is poised to include the long-anticipated recovery of multiple drones safely at an “operational rate of speed,” or within half an hour:

Gremlins mid-air retrieval demonstration set for fall

NATIONAL HARBOR, MD -- The next flight test for the X-61A airborne retrieval system is slated for this fall, during which Dynetics' Gremlins team lead said the program will showcase repeated recoveries of a single drone and more amid what he anticipates will be the first successful demonstration of the effort.

The Army has lowered the number of Joint Light Tactical Vehicles it says it will need in the future:

JLTV follow-on contract shrinks to 16,600 vehicles

The follow-on Joint Light Tactical Vehicle production contract could include 16,600 vehicles and 10,000 trailers over 10 years after the Army makes an award in the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2022, according to the most recent draft numbers.

The Marine Corps is trying to field by 2024 a modified Joint Light Tactical Vehicle with medium-range cruise missiles to give the service a Ground Based Anti-Ship Missile (GBASM) capability:

Marine Corps will start NMESIS user evaluation in October with 11th Marines

The Marine Corps next month plans to launch user evaluation of its top ground-vehicle modernization priority -- a new robotically controlled, ship-killing ground vehicle -- by providing 11th Marines in Camp Pendleton, CA, Navy/Marine Corps Expeditionary Ship Interdiction System (NMESIS) assets, beginning a process that is slated to transition to a formal operational assessment next spring.

Last but by no means least, some news about the transfer of a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency data translation tool to the Air Force:

DARPA: STITCHES' transition to Air Force 'a model' for other potential JADC2 efforts

The Defense Advanced Research Project Agency has fully transitioned its data translation tool to the Air Force, a process that one official said will "serve as a model" for moving other efforts that could be leveraged to enable joint all-domain command and control to the service and elsewhere.