May 27, 2009 16:52 UTC
P-3/ CP-140 Aurora
Canada’s C$ 1.67 billion Aurora Incremental Modernization Project began in 1998, and is an amalgamation of 23 individual projects grouped into 4 chronologically consecutive block upgrades. Key upgrades successfully performed under the AIMP to date have included new electro-optical and infrared sensors (L-3 Communications) under Block III, and upgrades to the navigation and flight instruments (CMC Electronics) under Block II. AIMP, plus the Aurora fleet’s new long-term, performance-based maintenance program, are designed to keep Canada’s fleet flying until 2015 or so.
Canada is also pursuing land-surveillance upgrades to its fleet. Given Canada’s commitments on the ground in Afghanistan, and employment of American P-3 Orion and British Nimrod MRA2 aircraft for ground surveillance in that theater, these contracts may yet contribute to NATO’s Afghan mission.
The latest update involves deployment of the aircraft to Afghanistan on a special overland mission.
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May 27, 2009 15:19 UTC
AE 2100D3 inspection
Rolls-Royce announced an $80 million contract to provide AE 2100D3 spare engines and parts to power new C-130J military transport aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps, the Royal Norwegian Air Force and the Indian Air Force. The contract, which is managed by Robins Air Force Base in GA, includes an initial 27 AE 2100D3 spare engines and parts for delivery through 2011.
The AE 2100D3 engine is a modular turboprop engine with 4,600 shaft-horsepower. The AE engine line is produced by Rolls-Royce and manufactured in Indianapolis, IN. Along with the AE 3007 and AE 1107C-Liberty, the engine line has totaled more than 37 million hours of service.
May 27, 2009 14:00 UTC
The Defense Supply Center Philadelphia, PA has awarded 2 contracts, worth a total of $46.7 million, to supply influenza vaccine to the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and federal civilian agencies.
One contract went to MedImmune Vaccines Inc. of Gaithersburg, MD, which received a maximum $32.3 million firm-fixed-price, sole source contract. There was one response to the original solicitation. The date of performance completion is June 30/10 (SPM2DP-09-D-0005).
Another contract went to Sanofi Pasteur in Swiftwater, PA, which received a maximum $12.4 million firm-fixed-price contract. There were eight proposals originally solicited for this contract, with one response. The date of performance completion is May 26/10 (SPM2DP-09-D-0007).
May 27, 2009 13:10 UTC
Virginia Class Cutaway
(click to view full: Large!)
Trident Systems Inc. in Fairfax, VA received a $10.2 million modification to a previously awarded contract for Phase III engineering services in support of mobile computing on-board SSN-774 Virginia class submarines and other submarine/ surface ship systems, surveillance and air platforms.
The contract modification is for engineering services in support of the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Topic: Mobile Computing for Submarine Application. The Phase III SBIR effort addresses systems and subsystems ranging from simple single processors to highly complex multi-processor network architecture. Work will include software development, procurement of COTS products and hardware/ software integration. Trident will perform work in Uniontown, PA (70%); Fairfax, VA (20%); and Raleigh, NC (10%) and expects to complete the work by May 2010. The Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC manages the contract (N00024-06-C-6265).
The Virginia class of attack submarines are designed for a broad spectrum of open-ocean and littoral missions. They are designed as a less expensive alternative to the Seawolf-class attack submarines, and are slated to replace the aging Los Angeles class submarines, of which 17/62 have already been decommissioned.
May 27, 2009 12:30 UTC
Oceaneering International’s Marine Services Division in Chesapeake, VA won a $14 million firm-fixed-price contract to extend the service life of 3 landing hovercraft. Oceaneering is performing the work under the Landing Craft, Air Cushion (LCAC) Service Life Extension Program (SLEP), which extends the expected service life of the LCAC by 50%, from 20 years to 30 years. The scope of this contract includes repair and upgrade of the buoyancy box, gas turbine engine replacement, installation of a new skirt, installation of an integrated C4N equipment package, craft alterations, and repair work. This contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring its cumulative value to $38.9 million.
LCACs are high-speed, fully amphibious hovercraft capable of carrying a 60-ton payload (75 tons in overload) over water and land at speeds in excess of 40 knots and a nominal range of up to 200 nautical miles. Carrying equipment, troops, and/or supplies, the LCAC launches from inside the well deck of an amphibious warship, then travels the waves at high speed, runs right through the surf zone near the beach, and stops at a suitable place on land. “LCAC Hovercraft: US Navy’s Champion Schleppers Get SLEPped” (subscriptions) discusses the LCAC hovercraft and the SLEP.
Oceaneering will perform the work in Norfolk, VA and expects to complete it by November 2012. This contract was competitively procured via FedBizOpps.com, with four offers received by the Naval Sea Systems Command at the Washington Navy Yard, Washington, DC (N00024-09-C-2240)
May 26, 2009 15:40 UTC
MkV Patrol Boat & RHIB
United States Marine in Gulfport, MS received a $61.6 million firm-fixed-price contract for detail design and construction of 10 Mark V (90′ MKV) patrol boats for the Kuwaiti Navy under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) Program. The vessels are designed for coastal patrol and interdiction, and other special operations at sea.
USMI manufactures both 82-foot Mark V Special Operations craft and a Mark V Patrol Boat. The Mark V Special Operations operations craft has a maximum speed of 47 knots and provides accommodations for 5 crew and 16 passengers. The Mark V Patrol Boat has a maximum speed of 45 knots, provides accommodations for 12 (10 crew and 2 officers), and has berthing accommodations, a galley, and mess.
USMI will perform the work in Gulfport, MS and expects to complete it by June 2013. The Naval Sea Systems Command at the Washington Navy Yard, DC manages the contract (N00024-09-C-2252).
May 26, 2009 12:49 UTC
F-15C over DC
“Array of Aging American Aircraft Attracting Attention” discusses the issues that accompany an air force whose fighters have an average age of over 23.5 years – vs. an average of 8.5 years in 1967. One of the most obvious consequences is the potential for fleet groundings due to unforseen structural issues caused by time and fatigue. That very fear is responsible for the #1 priority placed on bringing new KC-X aerial tankers into the fleet to complement the USA’s 1960s-era KC-135 Stratotankers.
It can also affect the fighter fleet more directly.
Following the crash of a Missouri Air National Guard F-15C aircraft Nov 2/07 (see crash simulation), the US Air Force suspended non-mission critical F-15 flight operations on Nov 3/07. While the cause of that accident is still under investigation, preliminary findings indicate that a structural failure during flight may have been responsible. In response, Japan suspended its own F-15 flights, which left them in a bit of a bind – even as Israel’s F-15s joined them on the tarmac. As the effects continue to spread and the USAF and others continue to comment on this situation, DID continues to expand its coverage of this bellwether event. A conditional restoration of the American F-15A-D fleet to flight status was soon overturned by the re-grounding of that fleet as a result of the report’s conclusions – a status that remains only been partially lifted. Meanwhile, the accident report has been released (compete with video dramatization) and the status of the remaining aircraft will have significant implications for the USAF’s future F-15 fleet size. Not to mention its other procurement programs.
Then, too, this is America. Now there’s a lawsuit.
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May 25, 2009 18:05 UTC
DARPA’s Robust Surface Navigation (RSN) program will allow American warfighters to geo-locate and navigate effectively when GPS is unavailable due to hostile action (e.g. jamming) or blockage by structures and foliage. After successfully completed Phase 1, Argon ST in Fairfax, VA received a $6.5 million contract for Phase 2A, with options for Phases 2B and 2C.
DARPA’s Strategic Technology Office initially selected Argon ST in 2008 to develop algorithms for mitigating multi-path signal errors and signal blockage that occur in urban canyons and indoor environments. According to DARPA, the RSN program will develop the procedures and technologies for geo-location of stationary assets and navigation of mobile platforms by exploiting signals of opportunity and/or specialized signals from satellite, airborne, and terrestrial assets. The use of widely available signals of opportunity will provide a robust non-GPS capability. Signals of opportunity can also be augmented when necessary by purpose-deployed signal-emitting beacons.
Argon ST has selected Honeywell Laboratories in Minneapolis, MN; Ticom Geomatics in Austin, TX; and The Charles Stark Draper Laboratory in Cambridge, MA to provide supporting software and engineering services in connection with this project.
May 25, 2009 16:15 UTC
HET w. M1 tank
DRS Sustainment Systems, a unit of DRS Technologies, received a $103.9 million firm-fixed-price contract for 274 M1000 heavy equipment transporter semitrailers. DRS Sustainment will perform the work at its facility in Saint Louis, MO, with an estimated completion date of May 30/12. One bid was solicited and received by TACOM-Warren, AMSCC-TAC-ATBC, in Warren, MI (W56HZV-09-D-0107).
The M1000 semitrailer [PDF] carries armored vehicles and other heavy equipment loads weighing up to 80 tons. The M1000 is able to load, unload, and transport the M1 Abrams tank and other heavy equipment on-road, off-road and cross country, in all weather conditions.
For more information on the U.S. Army’s Family of Heavy Tactical Vehicles, see “US Military Adds Heavy Trucks Under FHTV III.”
May 25, 2009 13:38 UTC
Austria has been a neutral power since World War 2, but contingents from its small armed forces are sometimes made available for international deployment. The growing realization that blast resistant vehicles are an essential piece of equipment in any combat zone appears to have finally reached Austria’s priority list, spawning a EUR 104 million (about $138 million) contract for 150 “protected multipurpose vehicles.”
In January 2009, Austria made its vehicle choice. Now, it has made its weapon choice…
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