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New 'family' of bombs in production

A new family of bombs designed to make them safer from accidental detonation due to fire is in full rate production at McAlester Army Ammunition Plant (MCAAP), the Department of Defense's premier bomb and warhead producer.

The new bomb system, called "insensitive munitions," is being produced for the U.S. Navy and Air Force in their 500, 1,000 and 2,000 pound general purpose bombs as well as the 2,000 pound penetrator bomb, respectively.

New Army Physical Readiness Test

Video by Joint Task Force Civil Support

Paratroopers get mountain training at Ranger School site

Paratroopers with Fort Bragg's 82nd Airborne Division concluded two weeks of mountain training Sept. 30 at Camp Frank D. Merrill, the site of the U.S. Army Ranger School's notorious mountain phase.

The steep, heavily-timbered terrain might have been familiar to the 34 paratroopers who wear the Ranger tab among the 800-strong 1st Battalion, 504th Parachute Infantry Regiment, a storied unit that participated in most of the large-scale Allied airborne operations during World War II.

Not so for the rest of the soldiers.

VMA 214 conducts carrier landing qualifications

The scream of the engine grew as the pilot accelerated down the flight deck. As the jet reached the end it soared into the air, quickly gaining altitude and disappearing into the night.

As the next jet pulled forward into position for takeoff, the jet that had just departed was on final approach to land. Nearing the flight deck of the USS Essex (LHD 2), it slowed to a hover less than 30 feet from the deck and smoothly executed a vertical landing, successfully completing its flight.

F-35B Completes Initial Shipboard Vertical Landing Aboard USS Wasp

The Navy and Marine Corps Team made naval aviation history Oct. 3 as the F-35B Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) test aircraft BF-2 landed safely on USS Wasp's (LHD 1) flight deck, the first at-sea vertical landing for the Marine Corps' F-35 JSF version.

Marine Corps test pilot Lt. Col. Fred Schenk landed BF-2 at 3:12 pm.

"It was exactly like we predicted," said Schenk. "But that's because of all the hard work and extensive preparation done by the Wasp and JSF team."

Marines stay sharp with ship-to-shore landing exercise

Amphibious assault vehicles and Naval landing craft landed ashore at Camp Pendleton, Calif., to conduct a large-scale ship-to-shore landing exercise, Sept. 30.

The amphibious assault was part of Exercise Dawn Blitz, a training evolution designed to train Marine units on rapid crisis response.

Fight the Freeze

Cold weather can have numerous adverse effects on Soldiers in combat. While cold injuries such as hypothermia and frostbite are serious medical problems, a Soldier's performance can be affected well before he or she is taken out of the fight. For instance, numb skin and heavy clothes hinder Soldier task performance. Soldiers also might become emotionally detached, lose motivation or be reluctant to leave their tents or sleeping bags. Fortunately, many of these problems are avoidable if Soldiers dress properly for the weather conditions.

Harriers prove vital to 31st MEU

Long range strikes and real-time reconnaissance footage are capabilities the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit gains from Marine Attack Squadron 214, and the 31st MEU would not have these capabilities without the unique characteristics of the AV-8B Harrier.

Soldiers learn essential combat skills during Air Assault School

Air Assault School is widely known as a tough course and, by design, it weeds out those who don't meet the requirements. The road marches, obstacle courses, sling-load operations and rappelling are physically and emotionally demanding; however, probably the most important task the Soldiers must master during the two-week course is attention to detail.

On "zero day," 148 Soldiers recently reported to the Light Fighters School where the Air Assault School is taught.