Bell Helicopter Tapped For H-1 Tail Rotor Blades | Rafael Acquired 50% Stake in Kanfit | RAF Puts BAe 146s Up For Sale
Walsh Federal LLC won a $49.8 million contract for the construction of P426 Littoral Combat Ship Logistics Facility at Naval Station Mayport. Work under the deal will provide for construction of a new four story, Phase II building, and renovations to the existing Phase I building. The two buildings will house the ashore component of administrative functions for deployed and in-port LCSs, as well as a portion of the training component. According to the DoD, the project also includes improvements to Bailey Avenue that will connect P426 to a new parking deck to be designed and constructed under a separate contract. The Littoral Combat Ship is a set of two classes of relatively small surface vessels designed for operations near shore by the USN. Work will take place in Jacksonville, Florida, and is expected to be finished by August 2021.
The Defense Logistics Agency Aviation awarded Bell Helicopter a maximum $8.9 million delivery order. The deal is for the H-1 aircraft tail rotor blades. More than 16,000 UH-1 Huey utility helicopters have been produced by Bell since service entry in 1958. The UH-1N entered service with the US Marine Corps in 1971. The UH-1Y utility helicopter is fully marinized and capable of shipboard operations worldwide, including take-off, landing, refueling and rearming. The helicopter is securable for deck movement up to Sea State 5. Missions include airborne command and control, aeromedical evacuation, troop transport, transport of supplies and equipment and search and rescue. Under the US Marine Corps H-1 program, 100 UH-1N Huey utility helicopters were remanufactured by Bell Helicopter to the UH-1Y grade and 180 AH-1W SuperCobra attack helicopters to AH-1Z grade. The UH-1Y and AH-1Z have a very high level of commonality which reduces the manufacturing and procurement costs. The helicopters have a common four-bladed, composite, hingeless, bearingless main rotor system and tail rotor, engine, avionics, software, controls and displays. Bell Helicopters will perform work under the new delivery order in Texas. Estimated completion will be in January 2023.
Middle East & Africa
Rafael Advanced Defense Systems has acquired a 50% stake in Israeli aerospace engineering company Kanfit, local media reports. The deal is valued at tens of millions of shekels. Kanfit will now become a subsidiary of Rafael. Founded in 1986, Kanfit is considered a leading global supplier for UAV components. The company manufactures primary and detailed parts, subassemblies, and ready-to-fly assemblies across the entire production chain. Kanfit’s owners Shai and Shula Fine will keep a 50% stake in the company following the deal. Earlier this month, Rafael and its partner, Israeli businessman Avihai Stolero, completed the acquisition of drone-maker Aeronautics, leading the latter to delist from the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. The deal, valued at approximately $243.5 million, leaves each partner with a 50 percent stake in Aeronautics.
The UK Royal Air Force reportedly wants to sell off its four BAe 146 jet transports. Two of these are currently configured specifically for VIP missions, including flying around members of the country’s Royal Family, as well as senior government and military officials, while the remaining pair are set up as small airlifters. Over the years, the four-engine jet aircraft, which have excellent short takeoff and landing capabilities and rough field performance, have flown missions in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Libya. Exclusively operated out of RAF Northolt by 32 (The Royal) Squadron, the BAe 146 is primarily tasked in the Command Support Air Transport role. Two 146 variants are operational, the VIP-configured CC.Mk 2 and the Quick Change (QC) C.Mk 3, which can be rapidly converted between passenger and cargo configurations.
Taiwan is working quickly to clear the hurdles for the purchase of 66 F-16s from the United States, Bloomberg reports. Local lawmakers are expected to approve a draft bill to create a special budget for the purchase. The bill is likely to be cleared by end of next month. The department on August 20 formally notified the US Congress that it approved the F-16 sale, which includes munitions, defensive electronics and a top-of-the line fire-control radar that would allow precision-guided missiles and bombs to be launched from greater distances. Once the deal is approved by Congress — and there has been no sign it will be blocked — Taiwan must submit a formal Letter of Offer and Acceptance that would be translated into a signed contract with delivery dates.
India’s Defense Research and Development Organization or DRDO reportedly successfully test fired its new Man-Portable Anti-Tank Guided Missile System. It was reportedly the third successful test of the indigenous anti-tank guided missile. The test firing took place at a firing range in Kurnool located in the state of Andhra Pradesh in southeastern India. “The missile was launched from a man portable Tripod launcher and the target was mimicking a functional tank,” a statement says. “The missile hit the target in top attack mode and destroyed it with precision.” According to DRDO, all the mission objectives were met. Previous test launches took place in September 2018 at the Ahmednagar test range in the western Indian state of Maharashtra. The MPATGM, a third-generation anti-tank guided missile (ATGM), has been under development by DRDO in partnership with Indian defense contractor VEM Technologies Ltd. for the past four years.
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