EADS announced revenue up 6% to 26.3 billion ($34.9B) for the 1st half of 2013. Defense grew by 3% to 5 billion euros ($6.6B). Confirming recent reports, the group is taking the Airbus name, and regrouping its defense activities under the Airbus Defence & Space division. Headquartered in Munich, Airbus D&S will account for 45,000 employees and 14 billion euros in yearly revenue. However military helos will be handled with their civilian brethren under the separate Airbus Helicopters.
The ship was deployed on operations, and proved out a number of the concepts behind her construction, but questions about the long-term durability of composite hulls prevented the type’s adoption into full US Navy service. The ship has been pushed to a maritime technology experimentation and demonstration role, but her saga remains interesting.
It takes more than tanks to make up an armored division. Iraq’s purchases of M1 Abrams tanks has attracted a lot of attention, and SIGIR reports of a deal for M2/M3 Bradley fighting vehicles were noteworthy. But Iraq’s DSCA export requests for its tanks also included a wide variety of other necessary accompaniments: tracked APCs, artillery, heavy transport trucks, and transport. Most were sold as “Excess Defense Articles”, and Iraq received additional equipment beyond those requests.
That equipment is necessary to round out Iraq’s armored formations, and make them a viable force. All of it has be checked out, refurbished as necessary, and then supported in the field. Other items, like M1135 Stryker vehicles for detecting weapons of mass destruction, occupy their own special niches. DID covers the associated requests, contracts, and developments.
In July 2013, the US DSCA announced Iraq’s request to buy of 12 Bell 412EP helicopters for search and rescue duties.
This exact type is new to Iraq, but they do have something similar. A 2005 Jordanian donation of 16 UH-1Hs were upgraded to Huey II configuration by adding a Honeywell T53-L-703 engine, modern avionics, and wiring. The twin-blade, single-engine helicopters are already used for search and rescue. In comparison, the 4-blade, twin-engine Bell 412s offer a similar but newer platform with advanced sensors, higher performance, and more lift.
Since a spat between India’s ministers of Commerce and Defense erupted publicly earlier this month, little clarity has emerged about what the ceiling for foreign participation in defense joint ventures would be. It looks like going beyond 26% and up to 49% might be left to case-by-base approval by cabinet committee. That sort of fuzziness is sure going to speed up and ease India’s acquisitions.
In July 2013, reports announced that the United Arab Emirates had just bought 17 mobile Ground Master 200 medium range radars. The GM200 is a useful air defense radar, but all radars of this type are most useful as part of a larger network. Fortunately, the UAE has been making steady investments in that kind of network, and so the new radars will be plugging into an existing framework, rather than acting as a core to build around.
Northrop Grumman’s Q2 2013 sales [PDF] were flat at $6.3B, though their total backlog shed $3.1B from a year ago, down to $37.7B (also down sequentially vs. $39.4B at the end of the previous quarter). Aerospace sales are proving more resilient than information systems or technical services, continuing the trend from the last year or two.