During the 2009 Dubai airshow, the United Arab Emirates signed a contract with Pilatus to buy 25 PC-21 intermediate trainer aircraft, in a package worth $511 million. That package also covers several training simulators and associated systems and services. The UAE will join Switzerland and Singapore as PC-21 operators; earlier PC-7 and PC-9 designs are widely used around the world. Pilatus | Dubai Airshow 09.
BAE Systems received a contract worth up to $233 million to support the US Navy’s Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) with engineering services, production engineering, integration, testing, inspection, and installation of various C4ISR (command, control, communications, computer, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance) systems.
As part of the contract, BAE’s Electronics, Intelligence and Support division will provide information, operating system integration and related services at land-based facilities and on various platforms, such as ships, submarines, and ground vehicles.
In the 1960s dark comedy Dr. Strangelove, a rogue US Air Force general succeeds in usurping the US “fail-safe” security system preventing unauthorized use of nuclear weapons. As a result, a nuclear weapon is dropped on the Soviet Union, the doomsday machine is activated, and the protagonists argue about who gets to ride out the war in mine shafts.
In the 21st century, the US Air Force is taking steps to make sure that nuclear-tipped ICBMs stay securely in their silos. Through the ICBM Security Modernization Program, the USAF has launched a number of initiatives to beef up silo security.
One of those initiatives is the Remote Visual Assessment Program, which is designed to improve the situational awareness of the security staff around the ICBM silos. To support that program, the USAF awarded Northrop Grumman a $31 million contract…
Valero Marketing & Supply Co. in San Antonio, TX won a maximum $118 million fixed price with economic price adjustment, indefinite-delivery/ indefinite-quantity contract for aviation turbine fuel to an undisclosed foreign customer under the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.
Valero has previously supplied fuel to Israel under FMS. On July 3/08, Valero won a maximum $46 million contract to supply fuel to the Israeli government.
The French DGA procurement agency recently announced [in French] that its 2009 urgences operations (UO, formerly “crash programs”) budget doubled from EUR 131 million in 2008 to EUR 260 million in 2009. This change is in line with a broader international trend, as front-line operations in Afghanistan and beyond reveal limitations in existing equipment, as well as new equipment needs. One change from 2008 was an increased emphasis on naval systems, as 4 of 36 UO programs focused on counter-piracy efforts.
Key 2009 programs included 32 armoring kits for France’s Puma and Cougar medium helicopters, 200 vehicle up-armoring kits, 150 IED jammers, 5 Buffalo mine-clearing vehicles, 60 RWS remote-control turrets for vehicles, The Venus project for on-the-move communication with the Syracuse satellite system, 10 SATCOM on-the-move stations, integration of America’s Remote Operational Video Enhanced Receiver (ROVER) ground-to-air communications into 25 Mirage 2000 fighters, and retrofitted IRST optical systems for existing French frigates that allow long-range passive scans, and identification of even small naval targets like pirate vessels.
Finmeccanica subsidiary SELEX Galileo recently announced [PDF] a EUR 26 million (about $38.7 million) contract for SM-1S radar seekers, as part of an MBDA contract for the provision of Marte MK2/N anti-ship missiles to “a Middle East customer.” The SM-1S integrates a new digital processor developed to enhance processing of the missile’s radar data, in order to improve detection and accuracy in environments that include near-shore’s high clutter levels.
The Marte Mk2/N anti-ship missile was introduced in 2006 as a naval variant of the helicopter-launched Mk2/S. The customer in this case is almost certainly the UAE, which became the Marte Mk2/N missile’s first customer when it contracted for 24 refit and new-build Ghannatha class 26.5 meter patrol boats at IDEX 2009. Some of these boats will carry the Mk2/N missile, while at least 6 will carry Patria’s 120mm Nemo automatic mortar turret instead, creating a flexible form of naval fire support that mirrors similar efforts in Finland.