* The Justice Department has filed charges against a BAE Systems subsidiary over alleged overcharging through the company’s $1.6 billion contract to supply over 20,000 Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles (FMTV) logistics vehicles, awarded in November 2008. Oshkosh won a re-competition (2009), with the company subsequently hemorrhaging money through the production of FMTV vehicles.
* Brazil is set to receive three C295 search and rescue aircraft from manufacturer Airbus in 2017, equipped with Israeli maritime surveillance radar and electro-optical/infrared sensors. Saudi Arabia ordered four C295s last month, with those the new W model.
* DARPA awarded a contract to New Hampshire-based DEKA Innovative Solutions Corp. on Thursday for sensorized prosthetic limbs, as part of the Hand Proprioception & Touch Interfaces (HAPTIX) program. The $7 million contract also covers the manufacture of prosthetic limbs under the Revolutionizing Prosthetics Follow-On Studies (RPFS) program. The prosthetics will be used as part of a year-long trial to generate data necessary for gaining market approval and subsequently access to a larger patient pool.
* Also on Thursday, Raytheon was awarded a $36.8 million contract for the AIM-120D missile’s System Improvement Program II- Engineering Manufacturing, Development phase, with the company set to provide software upgrades under the contract to counter “rapidly advancing threats.”
* Fincantieri and Finmeccanica have been awarded a contract to construct a landing helicopter dock (LHD) for the Italian Navy, as part of a $6 billion multi-year shipbuilding program covering the LHD, patrol vessels and a logistics support ship. The LHD contract is taking approximately $1.2 billion of this, with the remaining $3.9 billion awarded in May for the construction of six patrol vessels and the logistics ship. The former are set to enter service between 2021 and 2025, whilst the latter is scheduled for delivery in 2019.
* Bulgaria may buy nine F-16 fighters from Greece, with the country also reportedly negotiating with Belgium and the Netherlands – all F-16 operators – regarding a proposed sale of combat aircraft. After selecting the US fighter over the Eurofighter in 2005, the Hellenic Air Force has ordered 170 F-16s to date, with Bulgaria previously stating that the country intends to retire its Soviet aircraft currently in service and replace them with Western-designed aircraft. However this plan appears to have subsequently changed, with a contract to repair the Air Force’s MiG-29s set to be signed with Poland by the end of July.
* Russia may continue to produce Borei-class submarines after the eight it has ordered enter service by 2020. The first boomer was delivered in 2013, with the second Borei-class nuclear sub entering operational service in April. A total of three having been delivered to date.
* The UK’s Ministry of Defence is researching the viability of establishing a General Dynamics production line in Britain for the FRES Scout SV armored vehicle. The “economic viability review” was reportedly begun alongside the awarding of a $5.5 billion contract to GD for 589 of the vehicles in September last year and is scheduled for completion later this month ahead of the Strategic Defence & Security Review later this year.
* Poland is currently negotiating the procurement of 7,900 assault rifles from the Lucznik-Radom arms factory. Nearly 5,500 of these will be the Beryl 5.56mm assault rifle, with 2,400 compact versions of the rifle, the so-called “mini-Beryl”. The Polish Army currently operates the Beryl, making this a sole source acquisition.
* The Indian Navy has commissioned a training simulator for its fleet of MiG-29K carrier fighters, the second such simulator to be inducted into the service. It is thought that the two simulators comprise part of a pair of deals signed for the fighters with Russia in 2004 and 2010, with the first simulator delivered under the first of these. India will order up to 45 of the aircraft, with the Russian manufacturer expected to deliver six by the end of 2015, with another six following in 2016. The Indian Navy recently deployed some of its MiG-29Ks to its Eastern flank.
* India is scrapping a four year old tender for new assault rifles to replace the infamously-inadequate INSAS. The four bidders – recently bankrupt Colt, Beretta, Ceska and Israel Weapon Industries have been notified of the tender withdrawal, which asked for interchangeable 5.56mm and 7.62mm barrels; something subsequently deemed technically unrealistic and overly costly. In April the Indian Home Ministry took the step of replacing 67,000 INSAS rifles with older, more reliable AK-47s.
* Australian shipyard Austal has delivered a Cape-class patrol vessel to the Australian Border Force, the seventh of eight contracted for in August 2011. The eighth is scheduled for delivery by August, with the sixth vessel delivered in May.
* A low level F-16 over Greenland…