April 20, 2021
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Today's Top News
President Joe Biden said ahead of a second bipartisan discussion with lawmakers on his infrastructure plan he was "prepared to compromise, prepared to see what we can do, what we get together on." Republican lawmakers have said they want a more modest package than the $2 trillion-plus proposal from Biden.
Full Story: CNBC (4/19),  Reuters (4/19) 
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Defense
Taiwan is seeking to purchase US long-range, air-launched cruise missiles while Taiwan develops its own domestically produced missiles. Taiwan did not elaborate, but the Lockheed Martin Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile could equip Taiwan's F-16 fighter aircraft.
Full Story: Reuters (4/19) 
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The Airbus A400M is moving closer to certification for helicopter refueling operations following successful test flights in France with a pair of Airbus H225M helicopters. The aircraft has previously shown its capability for refueling a range of fighter aircraft.
Full Story: AIN Online (4/19) 
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Hybrid Tiger drone stayed aloft for 24-plus hours powered by solar panels in a demonstration by the US Naval Research Laboratory. This is the longest flight demonstration for the aircraft.
Full Story: FlightGlobal (U.K.) (4/19) 
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Elbit Systems has received a $1.65 billion contract from Greece to create and manage a flight training center. The potential 20-year contract covers hosting of M-346 fighter jet trainers and the maintenance of T-6 Texan II turboprop training aircraft.
Full Story: GovConWire (4/19) 
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Civil Aviation
Willie Walsh, the new director general of the International Air Transport Association, says the industry is cutting carbon emissions, citing airlines' ongoing investment in sustainability even amid the business challenges of the coronavirus pandemic.
Full Story: FlightGlobal (U.K.) (4/20) 
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Air France is considering freighter conversions for its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in order to meet increased demand for cargo flights.
Full Story: Simple Flying (4/19) 
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The UK Civil Aviation Authority has given Sees.ai permission to test drone operations beyond the line of sight, seen as a step toward broader commercial operations in the future.
Full Story: Financial Times (subscription required) (4/19) 
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The State Department plans to issue "do not travel" advisories based on COVID-19 rates that will put about 80% of the world on that list, a move that "reflects an adjustment" to rely more on epidemiological assessments from the Centers for Disease Control.
Full Story: CNBC (4/19) 
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Space
Lockheed Martin has created a new line of intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance satellites that feature an open architecture and can be produced in large numbers to populate a constellation. "Digital engineering and manufacturing are accelerating our ability to deploy robust, future-focused constellations that feature leading-edge technology for our customers' missions," said Lockheed's Rick Ambrose.
Full Story: New Atlas (4/19) 
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Amazon has enlisted United Launch Alliance for nine launches using the Atlas 5 rocket to carry Kuiper satellites into orbit. Amazon is planning a constellation of more than 3,000 satellites.
Full Story: The Verge (4/19) 
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Policy and Legislation
The Pentagon has confirmed a buildup of Russian troops near the Ukraine, with spokesman John Kirby noting that the current buildup is "certainly bigger than the one in 2014."
Full Story: Reuters (4/19) 
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April prepares her green traffic light and the world thinks Go.
Christopher Morley,
writer, editor, journalist
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