Indonesia: Flanker family fighter jets: An official from the Russian state-owned Rostec said that he believes that contracts for the Su-35 with the government of Indonesia will be signed "in the coming months." Jakarta is in the midst of an investigation into their procurement of the Leonardo AW101 helicopter, with the first delivered unit currently being stored in a hangar at the Indonesian capital’s Halim Perdanakusuma air base pending the completion of the investigation. Photos of the plane have shown the helicopter surrounded by police tape.
LRASM: Long Range Anti-Ship Missile: Lockheed Martin has received a $85.5 million United States Air Force contract modification for the production and delivery of Long Range Anti Ship Missiles (LRASM) to the service. The order calls for the manufacture of 23 LRASM Lot 1 missiles, with work to be performed in Orlando, Fla., with a scheduled completion date of Sept. 29, 2019. The missile is currently being integrated with the B-1B Lancer strategic bomber and F/A-18E/F Super Hornet for air launched missions, as well as the Mk 41 Vertical Launch System used on US and allied ships for surface-to-air and land attack missiles. It is expected to be mounted on submarine vertical launch systems as well.
Standard missile family SM-1 to SM-6: A Standard Missile-3 Block IIA intercept test conducted by the US Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Japan Ministry of Defense has failed. Launched from the USS John Paul Jones at the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai, Hawaii, the SM-3 successfully detected and tracked the missile with its AN/SPY-1 radar and engaged, but failed to score a hit. This is the fourth test launch of the Block IIA and the second intercept test. The first attempted intercept earlier this year was successful. Further details are expected to be released at a later date once test data is reviewed by program officials.
Rapid Fire | Thursday, July 27, 2017, 05:00 UTC ()
Lockheed Martin has received a $85.5 million United States Air Force contract modification for the production and delivery of Long Range Anti Ship Missiles (LRASM) to the service. The order calls for the manufacture of 23 LRASM Lot 1 missiles, with work to be performed in Orlando, Fla., with a scheduled completion date of Sept. 29, 2019. The missile is currently being integrated with the B-1B Lancer strategic bomber and F/A-18E/F Super Hornet for air launched missions, as well as the Mk 41 Vertical Launch System used on US and allied ships for surface-to-air and land attack missiles. It is expected to be mounted on submarine vertical launch systems as well.
The US Navy has awarded Raytheon a $11.5 million contract modification for engineering and technical services for Standard Missile-2 and Standard Missile-6 surface-to-air missiles. As well as the US Navy, Japan, Denmark, South Korea, Taiwan and Germany will receive services under the award which includes engineering work for production and integration of the system into Navy and foreign missile platforms. Work will be conducted in Tucson, Ariz. and has an expected completion date of June 2018. The SM series feature as a key element of the AEGIS Weapon System mounted on Ticonderoga and Arleigh Burke-class Navy warships, while variants are also in use with 15 allied countries.
Last month’s failed SM-3 Block IIA interceptor test conducted by the US Navy and Missile Defense Agency (MDA) was caused by human error, according to an anonymous source close to the test. The June 21 test saw the missile self-destruct after it tracked a medium-range ballistic target missile launched from the Pacific Missile Range Facility at Kauai, Hawaii. Now, it is believed that a tactical datalink controller, in charge of maintaining encrypted data exchanges between ships and aircraft, accidentally identified the incoming ballistic missile target as a friendly in the system, causing the SM-3 missile to self-destruct in flight. So while the incident is slightly embarrassing, there doesn’t seem to be anything wrong with the interceptor.
Middle East & North Africa
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has announced that contracts involving the sale of Almaz-Antey S-400 surface-to-air missile (SAM) systems have been “inked.” Speaking to lawmakers from his ruling AK Party at a party meeting in parliament, Erdogan stated that “Steps have been taken and signatures signed with Russia concerning the S-400s. God willing we will see the S-400s in our country.” The announcement now confirms that both the S-400 procurement and the Turkey-Eurosam programs are parallel initiatives, with the S-400 being sought for near-term needs.
Two unidentified governments have placed orders with Rheinmetall for air defense system hardware and services for its air forces. With a combined value in excess of $250 million, one order is to a new customer who will acquire two Skyguard 3 air defence systems, with each system including a Skyguard 3 fire control unit and two 35mm Oerlikon Twin Gun GDF009 automatic cannons. The second order, to a repeat customer, requests the delivery of one 35mm Skyguard 1 fire units, as well as 35mm ammunition, simulators, and on-location training. Rheinmetall will conduct deliveries through 2021 with expectations that follow-up orders will be made.
The British MoD has insisted that fabrication of the AW159 Wildcat helicopter will remain within the UK. Leonardo, the helicopter’s manufacturer, had been considering moving from its facility where the Wildcat is fabricated in Yeovil, UK, however, the government announced that work will remain there for the life cycle of the Wildcat program. The helicopter is in use with the British Royal Navy and British Army, with 62 of the models currently in service.
As a result of the ongoing investigation into corruption at Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), many in South Korea see the scandal potentially widening into a probe into other defense programs initiated under former President Park Geun-hye. Prior to being impeached, ousted from office, and imprisoned earlier this year for influence peddling, Park and her administration had overseen the approval of the purchase of 40 F-35 fighters from Lockheed Martin and kicked off the development of the indigenous KF-X fighter with KAI. Now, these programs could be rolled into a wider corruption investigation to include higher-level figures, as President Moon Jae-in seeks to eradicate corruption between big business and politicians. The prosecution personnel made available—more than 100— for the ongoing KAI Surion helicopter investigation may also indicate to a potential widening of scope.
AeroVironment has signed contracts with the Australian MoD to deliver its Wasp AE unmanned aerial system to the Australian Defense Forces. Deliveries will take place over a three-year period commencing from July 2018 in conjunction with Australian partners XTEK, General Dynamics Mediaware and Sentient Vision. The WASP AE is a small hand-launched reconnaissance and surveillance UAS that weighs just 2.8 pounds and is capable of landing on both land and sea.
| Leonardo helicopters has been commissioned to provide support for UK AW159 Wildcat helicopters. The five-year Wildcat Integrated Support and Training contract, worth $333 million, will see Leonardo provide a range of support and training services for Wildcat variants operated by the Royal Navy and Army and will preserve some 500 jobs at its UK facilities. Navy Wildcats act as the core of the service's aviation capability, tackling ASW roles, force protection, transport and information, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance, while the Army variant performs reconnaissance, command and control, force protection, and transport missions.
| Lockheed Martin and Raytheon have been contracted by the US DoD to modernize the Command Launch Unit for their jointly-developed Javelin anti-tank missile. Valued at $10.1 million, the contract modification will apply toward weight reduction, engineering design requirements and analysis for updating the CLU infrared targeting system. Work will be performed in Tucson, Ariz., and is scheduled to be completed by September 30, 2019. The CLU provides thermal target detection and lock-on to the missile before launch, and it can be used independently as a thermal scanning device for dismounted troops. More »
| The United States Air Force has awarded a $75 million contract to Raytheon to conduct technical work on the GBU-53 Small Diameter Bomb (SBD) II guided air-dropped weapon system. Work will be conducted at Tuscon, Ariz., and covers engineering, manufacturing development and production work for the SDB II. Completion time is expected by July 25, 2024. The all-weather munition is carried on USAF-operated F-15E, F/A-18E/F, and F-35B/C aircraft. More »
| BAE Systems has teamed with Italian firm Goriziane Group SpA to offer joint support of the BvS10 Beowulf armored all-terrain vehicle (ATV). Gorizioni Group, who have already worked with BAE on the older BV206 ATV, are specialists in the engineering and maintenance of vehicles and other heavy equipment, and this extended agreement is part of BAE's dedication to "work closely with industries in the countries we do business in to support government programs and local economies," according to Tommy Gustafsson-Rask, general manager of BAE Systems Hagglund. The Italian military is one of the largest users of the BV206 and BV206S vehicles, and is also in use with the militaries of Austria, France, the Netherlands, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. More »
| France placed its new Griffon multirole troop carrier on public display during this year's Bastille Day parade on July 14. The Griffon featured in the parade was one of two prototype vehicles undergoing certification tests by the French Army and Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA)—its procurement office—with four more currently on order with manufacturers Nexter, Renault Trucks Defense and Thales. The same group is also developing the Jaguar, a combat vehicle designed to share common equipment with the Griffon. Both vehicles are being developed under France's Project Scorpion—a $6.8 billion multi-company modernization effort that aims to replace all of France's frontline fighting vehicles with improved platforms linked with a new and unified communications and battlefield management system (BMS). More »
| Elbit Systems announced that it has flown a number of demonstration flights of its Hermes 900 UAV for an interested Philippine Air Force (PAF). Manila is in the market for new intelligence reconnaissance and surveillance capabilities for both patrolling its territorial waters and tackling an insurgency on the archipelago by jihadists affiliated with the Islamic State. Earlier this month, neighboring Singapore offered to send UAVs and urban warfare assets to help the Philippine military tackle the insurgency, assets which contains fellow Israel firm IAI's Heron 1—which has a range of 200km and can stay in the air for 24 hours—and the Hermes 900's predecessor, the Hermes 450—which has half the range and a shorter flying time of 14 hours. The Hermes 900 meanwhile, boasts an endurance of 36 hours and a flight range of 1,850km.