AIM-120 Advanced, Medium-Range Air to Air Missile (AMRAAM): Raytheon received a contract modification totaling $528.8 million for the production of AMRAAM air-to-air missiles, a portion of which are earmarked for Foreign Military Sales. The company recently announced that it has begun development of an extended-range variant of the missile, with tests scheduled for later this year. More »
General Dynamics has removed itself as prime contractor for the T-100 trainer, a contender for the T-X requirement to provide next-generation trainer jets to replace the T-38. The Air Force released the final set of requirements for the T-X only a matter of days ago and with GD now withdrawing, the ability of manufacturer Alenia Aermacchi to compete without a US prime is uncertain, especially given the high level of competition for the lucrative program.
Lockheed Martin was awarded a $485 million IDIQ contract Friday for advanced targeting pods, a portion of which are earmarked for FMS. The Sniper pod is operational on the F-15, F-16, F-18, B-1, B-52 and A-10 platforms. Singapore, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Canada, the UK and Belgium are previous export customers. A separate $8.9 million contract will also see Lockheed provide the Jordanian Air Force with 10 of the targeting pods, through the UK as a third party.
A $28.5 million contract was awarded to Boeing for twenty-five QF-16 target drones, following the delivery of the first initial rate production aircraft on 20 March. The QF-16 is a pilotless version of the F-16 fighter, with the Air Force planning to procure 126 to replace its rapidly diminishing fleet of Phantom-based QF-4 drones.
A joint Anglo-French mine countermeasure contract was awarded Friday to a team of French Thales and British BAE Systems. The contract will see the development of both subsurface and surface unmanned vehicles, with prototypes due for completion in 2019.
Japan and India are in talks to set up a joint venture in order to manufacture the US-2 amphibious plane currently operated by the Japanese Self-Defense Forces. India reportedly plans to procure twelve of the aircraft, with ten of these produced in India. These latest reports have reduced the number of aircraft India plans to procure compared to previous media coverage, falling from fifteen.
| The Netherlands has been experimenting. The Royal Netherland Air Forces has been using "modifications and operational techniques" to convert their fleet of AH-64 Apache helicopters from their traditional ground-attack and CAS roles to a more ISTAR-oriented platform. Details of exactly what these special changes are remain to be seen.
| The DSCA notified Congress of the potential sale of three Sikorsky UH-60M Black Hawks to Mexico, in a deal potentially worth $110 million. That there are only three Black Hawks in the deal is surprising, as the application appears to have gone in with five requested.
Slovakia is also poised to receive nine of the same model. More »