Sep 26, 2011 12:03 UTC
Sikorsky’s H-60 Hawk family has become the backbone of the US Army and Navy’s helicopter force, with a number of fielded variants. The USAF’s HH-60 is well known for its medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) role, as well as its combat search and rescue functions. The US Army also operates dedicated MEDEVAC models. The UH-60Qs include a 6 patient litter system, on-board oxygen generation, medical suction system, and other advanced medical capabilities. They are complemented by more recent HH-60Ls, and the entire fleet will eventually be recapitalized using new HH-60M MEDEVAC models.
The HH-60M’s higher power rating might make them somewhat more useful in hot and/or high altitude conditions like Afghanistan. In that theater, H-60 helicopters have taken a back seat to larger machines like Boeing’s H-47 Chinooks, the USMC’s CH-53E Super Stallions, and Eurocopter’s Super Puma/Cougar series. In the mountainous altitudes around Tora Bora, for instance, the California Army National Guard’s 126th Medical Co. (Air Ambulance) reportedly had to use its UH-60Ls stripped of their heavy litter carousels. One area where usefulness can receive quick improvements across the entire fleet, however, involves surveillance and visualization.
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Sep 25, 2011 20:34 UTC
Sept 21/11: The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency announces Saudi Arabia’s formal request for up to $886 million of equipment to augment the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s existing light artillery capabilities. The Royal Saudi Land Forces already have towed 155mm and 105mm howitzers and support vehicles and systems, and DSCA says they will have no difficulty absorbing these additional howitzers into their armed forces. If a contract is negotiated, implementation of this sale will not require the assignment of any U.S. Government or contractor representatives to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
As a Foreign Military Sale mode purchase, any contract will be managed by a US Army department, probably the Rock Island Arsenal, IL. The specific items requested include:
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Sep 22, 2011 20:10 UTC
GR9 in Afghanistan w.
In late Sept 2011, The Washington Times reported on a unreleased U.S. Defense Department study, which had apparently concluded that Taiwan’s best response to the threat of massive Chinese missile strikes against its airfields involved buying short-takeoff and vertical-landing jets such as the V/STOL(Vertical/ Short Take Off and Landing) AV-8B Harrier II, or the new F-35B Lightning II STOVL(Short Take-Off, Vertical Landing capability) model. The Pentagon is delivering the study, which was Congressionally mandated at the behest of Sen. John Cornyn [R-TX], to Capitol Hill by the end of this week.
Militarily, this recommendation actually makes a great deal of sense, and a few countries already have that kind of survivability built into their defense plans and fighter choices…
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Sep 21, 2011 14:17 UTC
In September 2011, General Dynamics C4 Systems in Scottsdale, AZ won an estimated $64.6 million, 5-year indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity, cost-plus-incentive-fee and cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for Wideband Networking Waveform software in-service maintenance, upgrades, and enhancements. WNW is the COFDM digital waveform protocol developed for the USA’s range of JTRS software-programmable radios, with data rates up to 12.1 Mbps. It’s part of the Network Enterprise Domain set that underlies all of the specific JTRS radio programs for aircraft, ships, vehicles and soldiers.
GDC4S has been involved with JTRS programs for some time, and is also the lead for the soldiers’ JTRS HMS program, working alongside Thales Communications et. al. WNW work will be performed in Scottsdale, AZ, and is expected to be complete by September 2016, but contract funds will expire at the end of the current fiscal year, on Sept 30/11. The contract was competitively procured via the FBO.gov website and the SPAWAR E-commerce website, with 2 offers received; GDC4′s most likely competitor was the L-3 Communications conglomerate. The US Space and Naval Warfare Systems (SPAWAR) Center Atlantic in Charleston, SC manages this contract (N65236-11-D-4806).