45 Nations Sign Joint Declaration on UAVs | GDLS Unveils Med-Weight Tracked Vehicle Demo at AUSA 2016 | Airbus Demos C295W Transport as Aerial TankerOct 07, 2016 00:58 UTC
- Canada’s Air Force will request $379 million from the government in order to fund the upgrade of avionics on its CF-18 fighters. Once installed, the modernization will keep the fighters flying until 2025, giving leaders in Ottawa some much needed breathing room on making a decision on the aircraft’s eventual successor. First bought in 1982, almost $2 billion has been spent on upgrading the fighters since 2001. (Values in USD)
- The US government, along with 44 other nations, has signed a joint declaration on the “Export and Subsequent Use of Armed or Strike-Enabled Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).” Signatories promise to “ensure the responsible export and subsequent use of these systems” as misuse of these UAVs could fuel conflict and instability, and facilitate terrorism and organized crime. The declaration said none of the principles were meant to undermine a country’s legitimate interest in producing, exporting, or acquiring such systems.
- General Dynamics Land Systems has unveiled their medium-weight tracked vehicle demonstrator, the Griffin, at the Association of the US Army (AUSA) 2016 Annual Meeting & Exposition. Combining elements of the turret and 120mm cannon from their M1A1/M1A2 Abrams main battle tank and the Ajax Scout Specialist Vehicle, the Griffin is being offered by GDLS as a “conversation starter” for the US Army’s Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) program. Speaking to IHS Janes, Mike Peck, GDLS’ head of business development, said the company could respond to army feedback with a revised platform within about 9-12 months.
Middle East & North Africa
- Joran’s King Abdullah II Special Operations Training Center (KASOTC) compound is playing host to Iraqi officers training under a NATO-led scheme to build a more stable, permanent cadre of squadron leaders. The six week course, involving both classroom and live-fire training exercises, comes at a time when the Iraqi government gears up for its assault on the city of Mosul, held by the Islamic State since June 2014.
- Poland has dropped plans to purchase H225M Caracel military helicopters from Airbus. The move was revealed by the Ministry of Economic Development, citing the cessation of negotiations with the company over potential offsets, and indicating that the Ministry of Defense was backing away from the $3.5 billion sale. Warsaw’s new government is instead leaning to offerings off Lockheed Martin’s Black Hawk and Leonardo’s AW149 helos, which come with greater offsets and production at domestic subsidiary facilities.
- Airbus has successfully demonstrated their C295W transport aircraft as an aerial tanker. Equipped with a palletized air-to-air refueling unit and associated computer control system, the aircraft conducted multiple contacts with a Spanish air force C295 aircraft during a test flight on September 2. Further trials with a helicopter receiver are planned before the end of the year and work is underway to eventually refuel UAVs. Future applications for the C295W include special operations and extending search and rescue aircraft range.
- The Philippine Air Force is to launch its fourth bid in two years to procure a close-air support (CAS) platform to replace its OV-10. A request for proposals (RFP) is expected in the coming months with Embraer’s Super Tucano tipped as the hot fave to win the competition. Previous attempts to acquire new CAS aircraft have fallen short as potential bidders failed to meet the requirements.
Don’t Call It A Tank! General Dynamics’ Griffin: