Canada Reconsiders CF-18 Replacement | 8 Seahawks Headed to Israel to Help Secure Natural Gas Field | NK Pours Propaganda on ThickJul 08, 2016 00:57 UTC
- Chile’s Navy is to receive MK 41 Vertical Launching Systems (VLS) armed with the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles (ESSMs). The systems and missiles will be installed as part of upgrades on three UK-built Type 23 frigates at a cost of $140 million. Raytheon, BAE Systems and Lockheed Martin are the contractors implementing the upgrade. At present, the former Royal Navy frigates operate the legacy GWS-26 Sea Wolf anti-air missiles so the ESSM’s represent a significant upgrade in capabilities.
- Canadian Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan has called for a return to the drawing board on Canada’s CF-18 replacement by reaching out to fighter manufacturers for consultations this summer. The news comes amid reports that Canada was going to purchase Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornets as a stop gap (or kicking the can down the road) without the new competition promised by the Liberals during the election campaign. However Sajjan refused to commit to a new competition or independent oversight raising concerns that the bold promises made to ditch the F-35 is causing a capability crisis.
- An LA Times investigation into tests on the Exoatmospheric Kill Vehicle (EKV) has revealed that they may not have been as successful as originally claimed by the Missile Defense Agency (MDA). Testing last January on the EKV’s divert thrusters had been hailed as a success, however Pentagon scientists interviewed claim that one of the divert thrusters failed and the “miss distance” with its intended target was 20 times further than what testers had planned. The MDA have refused to confirm that any of the thrusters failed during testing.
Middle East North Africa
- Eight SH-60F Sea Hawks will be making their way to Israel after the sale was cleared by the US State Department under the Excess Defense Articles (EDA) Program. The estimated cost of the sale is valued at $300 million with the helicopters to be operated on four newly purchased frigates to secure the Leviathan Natural Gas Field.
- A joint exercise between the Latvian and Lithuanian Air Forces has seen the successful testing of the RBS 70 and the RBS 70 NG during last month’s air defense exercise “Baltic Zenith 2016”. The purpose of the exercise was to train both nations in the operation of the systems with supplier Saab claiming “operators were able to successfully hit the flying targets and after only a few hours of training with the new RBS 70 NG, they could engage the targets with full effect.” Containing an integrated 24/7 all-target capability, the RBS 70 NG has been developed for the most demanding air defense combat situations.
- While reports of imminent French concessions to India reported last week may have seemed too good to be true, that was probably because they were. Instead, Paris is insisting on the signing of an $8.9 billion government-to-government deal with India prior to any finalization on offsets for New Delhi’s purchase of Rafael fighters. An Indian MoD procurement official said that no negotiations on the Rafale deal between France and India have taken place in more than six weeks, and the next meeting is yet to be scheduled.
- North Korea has claimed that the mid-air explosion of its Musudan ballistic missile in June was an intentional “test attack” on enemy satellites. This accidentally on purpose explosion was detected to have burst into pieces mid-air after flying some 150 km after its launch on June 22. This was followed by another test later that day and while this second missile landed in the Sea of Japan, the first missile contained a controlled device on board which caused the explosion. Big words followed from North Korea’s propaganda machine claiming they “could render US spy satellites lumps of scrap metal if Pyongyang detonates an electromagnetic pulse bomb at a high attitude after delivering it via one of its missiles.”
- The US State Department has cleared the sale of 17 SM-2 Block IIIB standard missiles to South Korea. Estimated at a cost of $60 million, the medium-range surface-to-air missiles will be used to compliment the RoK Navy’s existing stocks of SM-2 Block IIIA/IIIB inventory. The missiles operate on Aegis destroyers as ballistic missile interceptors and represent a beefing up by Seoul of its stocks to counter potential threats from North Korea.
- Saab’s RBS 70 NG: