Tuesday, May 26, 2015

B-1 Lancer Bomber - Carpet Bombing

US B-1 Bomber Take Off to Bomb ISIS - Coalition Against ISIS in Iraq / S...

Iraqi army launches major offensive against ISIL terrorists to liberate ...

Iraqi forces trying to repel ISIL attacks on Baiji refinery

Operation Inherent Resolve:Progress in Battle of Beiji;Major Air Strikes

On Friday 22 May,the Pentagon announced in a press release that Iraqi security forces and federal police,enabled by the Operation Inherent Resolve Coalition,have successfully cleared and established a ground route into the Beiji oil refinery.For several months,control of the refinery has been contested by Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant militants and Iraqi security forces.Ground forces,supported by coalition air strikes and reconnaissance,advise and assist elements,have cleared through the area,established route security and reclaimed key terrain.
Brigadier General Thomas Weidly,US Marine Corps,chief of staff of Combined Joint Task Force OIR,stated that,in the past 72 hours,we have seen the Iraqi security forces make steady,measured progress in regaining some of the area leading to the Beiji oil refinery despite the significant ISIL resistance in the form of IEDs,suicide vehicle borne IEDs,as well as heavy weapon and rocket fire attacks.In spite of the isolated nature of where the Iraqi security forces have been operating and the constant threat from ISIL,creating a safe route to the refinery will allow supplies and reinforcements to arrive.This will assist security forces in clearing and securing contested areas in and around the refinery.
ISIL has increased the intensity of its assault on the refinery and adjacent areas since they were pushed out of Tikrit,the Pentagon said.*
In the OIR air campaign between 8 am 24 May and 8 am 25 May,a major series of air strikes on ISIL targets in Syria took place near Hasakah.A total of 7 sorties destroyed 4 fighting positions,a checkpoint,an excavator,a vehicle borne IED and a vehicle.No civilian casualties were reported in the raid,which took place in an area where Kurdish forces had reported that a vehicle borne IED had resulted in an undetermined number of civilian injuries.
Near Raqqah,2 sorties destroyed an excavator and a tank.
Near Dayr Az Zawr,a sortie destroyed a multiple rocket launcher vehicle.*
In Iraq over the same time period,there was a heavy series of 25 air strikes on ISIL targets approved by the Iraqi Ministry of Defense.
Near Baghdadi,5 sorties destroyed 4 structures,2 fighting positions,an armoured excavator,a heavy machine gun and a vehicle borne IED.
Near Beiji,3 sorties destroyed a dump truck,an armoured excavator and a tanker.
Near Fallujah,a sortie destroyed an anti-aircraft artillery piece and a fighting position.
Near Hit,a sortie struck a vehicle borne IED facility.
Near Mosul,a major series of strikes consisting of 9 sorties destroyed 4 heavy machine guns,3 buildings,an armoured vehicle,an excavator and a vehicle borne IED.
Particpants in Syria include the US,Bahrain,Canada,Jordan,Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
Participants in Iraq include the US,Australia,Belgium,Canada,Denmark,France,Jordan,the Netherlands and the UK.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Marines Live-Fire Ops • Novo Selo Training Area Bulgaria

Black Sea Rotational Force - Live Fire Platoon Attack-US Marines in Bulgaria

U.S. Marines & Romanian Soldiers - Live Fire Exercise

US BSRF Marines - Mountain Training with Romanian Soldiers

Black Sea Rotational Force:US Marines Begin NATO Drills in Romania

NATO Exercise Platinum Eagle began on Monday 18 May,announced Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steve Warren,US Army.The annual,pre-planned drills are being held with the participation of about 150 US Marines and US Navy Sailors of the Black Sea Rotational Force,along with Bulgarian and Romanian troops.The exercise will last through 28 May at the Babadag Training Area in Tulcea County,Romania.The exercise will highlight basic infantry skills,advanced marksmanship,company level command and control,and the use of anti-armour weapons systems,COL Warren said.It is intended to demonstrate the capabilities of NATO allies in Eastern Europe.
Agerpres,the Romanian National News Agency,added that 750 Romainian soldiers of the 1st Mechanized Brigade "Argedava," as well as naval and air support structures,are training with the US Marines and Bulgarian forces. The annual training module of BSRF-15 is to include live fire training,parachute jump exercises,close air support,first aid in conflict areas and subunit command and control procedures.*
The Black Sea Rotational Force is a special purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force deployed to Black Sea,Balkan and Caucasus regions of Eastern Europe to participate in security cooperation,to strengthen partner military capacity,enhance regional stability,and provide crisis response to nations in the region,BSRF said.US Marine Corps Forces Europe is committed to building partner capacity and interoperability with partner nations through the use of rotational forces and providing the premier crisis response force for US European Command.BSRF utilises the US Permanent Forward Operating Site,PFOS,at Mihail Kolganiceanu Airfield,Romania as a staging base.It executes 85% of MARFOREUR Theater Security Cooperation engagements.US EUCOM tasked MARFOREUR to provide the rotational force beginning in 2010 to maintain strategic access across the Caucasus and Black Sea regions through security cooperation and security force assistance.*
On Tuesday 19 May,NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in Brussels.It was their first meeting since February.Mr.Stoltenberg said he asked Russia to withdraw their forces and heavy weapons from Ukraine and to stop supporting the rebels in Eastern Ukraine.He also requested that Russia give earlier warning about its future exercises,lest incidents occur that could spiral out of control.
Russia has consistently denied that it has any such forces or weapons in Ukraine.*
Also on Tuesday,US Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Victoria Nuland stated at a press conference at the US Ambassador's residence in Moscow that the truce agreed to in February by Ukraine and Russian-backed separatists was being violated on a daily basis,and those violations need to stop.The separatists in Eastern Ukraine were responsible for the bulk of the violations,and OSCE monitors should be allowed to monitor the truce from within the conflict zone.*
Ukraine claims it has captured two Russian soldiers accused of killing Ukrainian soldiers.They will be prosecuted for terrorist offences.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Coast Guard Ending Ground Inspections in Afghanistan | Military.com

Coast Guard Ending Ground Inspections in Afghanistan | Military.com

A-10 Warthog Hits ISIS Before Kurdish Peshmerga Assault

Air Strikes on ISIL: F/A-18 and EA-6B Launch From Aircraft Carrier USS G...

Clashes between Kurdish forces, ISIL left 16 Kurdish Peshmergas dead

Kurdish forces continue assault against ISIL militants in Kirkuk - no co...

ISIL Prison Break;Kurdish General Killed;Operation Inherent Resolve Airstrikes

ISIL is claiming responsibility for a prison break in Khalis,Diyala Province,Iraq on Friday 8 May.Fifteen IEDs were detonated against army and police convoys and vehicles around the prison to begin a coordinated attack,ISIL said;while the Iraqi Interior Ministry says the melee began as a fight between prisoners that turned into a riot.
In any event,inside the prison,prisoners managed to break into the prison armoury and seize its weapons.In the ensuing firefight with security forces,some 50 inmates and 12 police were killed;while more than 50 prisoners escaped,nine of them convicted terrorists.
Iraqi security forces cordoned off the area and searched homes for the escapees.It was a small prison break in contrast with those at Baghdad's Abu Ghraib prison in July of 2013,when more than 500 prisoners were freed,including leading Islamist extremists;or the June 2014 breaks in Tikrit and Mosul,when hundreds of Sunni Muslims were freed and recruited into ISIL.It seems that fomenting prison breaks is a key element of ISIL's strategy as a means of garnering headlines,freeing terrorists and gleaning recruits.*
Major General Salah Delmani of the 118th Brigade Kurdish Peshmerga and two of is bodyguards were killed by a bomb blast near his car Tuesday near the city of Kirkuk in Northern Iraq.No one has claimed responsibility,but ISIL controls part of Kirkuk Province outside the city,which is under Kurdish control.ISIL desires to capture the city because of the oil fields nearby and has attacked it many times.MGEN Delmani was commander of Daquq village,which is south of Kirkuk on the strategic road to Baghdad which was recently recaptured from ISIL by the Kurds.*
Between 8 am Sunday 10 May and 8am Monday,the US-led coalition carried out a number of airstrikes on ISIL targets in Iraq and Syria in support of Operation Inherent Resolve.
In Syria,attack,fighter and remotely piloted aircraft carried out 9 sorties.
Near Hahaskah,6 sorties destroyed 3 ISIL fighting positions,3 vehicles,2 mortar positions,4 heavy machine guns and a supply point.Near Raqqah,1 sortie destroyed 2 vehicles.Near Kobani.2 sorties destroyed a mortar position and a vehicle.
Those participating in airstrikes on ISIL in Syria include the US,Bahrain,Canada,Jordan,Saudi Arabia and the UAE.
In Iraq,near Beiji,2 sorties destroyed a vehicle.Near Fallujah,2 sorties destroyed 4 fighting positions and a vehicle.Near Haditha,1 sortie destroyed 2 fighting positions.Near Mosul,2 sorties struck a fighting position and land features giving ISIL a tactical advantage,the Pentagon said.
Those participating in airstrikes on ISIL in Iraq include the US,Australia,Belgium,Canada,Denmark,France,Jordan,the Netherlands and the UK.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

X-37B Lands At Vandenberg (2012)

US Air Force X-37B Space Plane Launches 3rd Mystery Mission | Video

USAF Boeing X-37B Helps Ensure Leadership in Space Technology

The US Air Force will launch the fourth unmanned mission of its dedicated space plane,the Boeing X-37B,on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station on 20 May 2015.The mission,known as OTV-4,or Orbital Test Vehicle-4,will be focused on the testing of experimental payloads,says Randy Walden,director of the USAF Rapid Capabilities Office.The RCO will test an experimental propulsion system developed by the Air Force Research Laboratory and Space and Missile Systems Center,among other experiments.A NASA advanced materials investigation is also on the docket.No other experiments have been disclosed.
We're very pleased with the experiments lined up for our fourth OTV mission,Mr.Walden said.We'll continue to evaluate improvements to the space vehicle's performance,but we're honoured to host these collaborative experiments that will help advance space technology.*
The Air Force has two of the vehicles,which are 8.8 meters/29 ft. long.One of the OTVs flew missions 1 and 3;the other flew mission 3.The last mission,OTV-3,lasted nearly two years at 674 days in orbit,landing on 14 October 2014.OTV-1 launched in April 2010 and lasted 225 days;OTV-2 blasted off in March 2011 and lasted 469 days.The duration of the OTV-4 mission wasn't released.*
The X-37B began as a NASA project in 1999,but was transferred to the USAF in 2004.The spacecraft was based on the aerodynamic design of the space shuttle.Indeed,it was originally intended to be launched from the shuttle's cargo bay,but was converted to an independent launch format when that was deemed too costly.Originating in Boeing's Phantom Works,it became a classified project of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and part of the Department of Defense's independent space policy after the 1986 explosion of the space shuttle Challenger.The program is concerned with risk reduction,experimentation and operational concept development for reusable space technologies in support of long-term developmental space objectives.*
The X-37B has been landing at Vandenburg Air Force Base,California,with Edwards Air Force Base,California as an alternate site.By the end of 2014,the OTVs were to be housed in the former space shuttle hangars at Kennedy Space Center,OPF-1 and OPF-2,following the hangars' renovation.The spacecraft is the world's smallest orbital space plane,one-fourth the size of the space shuttle.It is powered by one Aerojet Rocketdyne human-rated AR2-3 engine.Flying an orbit of the same altitude as reconnaissance satellites and the International Space Station at 410 kilometers/255 miles,it is a crucial exponent of the Air Force's space doctrine that space is vitally important to everything it does,be it secure communications;intelligence,search and rescue;missile warning;weather prediction;or precision navigation and timing,all of which rely on space,a domain that is increasingly contested.*
One of the main experiments on OTV-4 will test the Hall effect thruster in support of the Advanced High Frequency Communications Satellite program.The AEHF satellites are nuclear-hardened and cost one billion dollars each.They are designed to ensure the continuity of military communications in the most drastic wartime scenarios.Three AEHFs have been deployed,with three more planned.
The Hall effect thruster experiment involves collection of telemetry from the thruster operating in the space environment,as well as measurement of the thrust imported on the vehicle.The data will be used to validate and improve Hall thruster and environmental modeling capabilities,which will enhance the ability to extrapolate ground test results to actual in-orbit performance,the Air Force said.A more efficient on-orbit thruster capability is highly significant.Less fuel burn lowers the cost to put a satellite in orbit,as well as enhances a spacecraft's operational flexibility,survivability and longevity.
The Hall thruster is a 4.5 kilowatt unit that uses electricity and xenon to produce thrust for maneuvering satellites.It produces whisper-like thrust by ionising and accelerating xenon gas.Xenon fuel weighs just a fraction of conventional hydrazine fuel,but takes longer to utilise.It is an electric propulsion system that needs very long periods of time to harness for orbital maneuvering.That may explain why the OTV-3 mission lasted almost two years.*
Boeing (BA),Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc (AJRD)