MNVR Panned by Pentagon Chief | Afghan Army Cashing in on Ammo Scrap | Largest Amphibious Aircraft (AG600) Rolled Out in ChinaJul 26, 2016 00:51 UTC
- The Pentagon’s chief weapons tester Michael Gilmore has blasted the Army’s Mid-Tier Networking Vehicular Radio (MNVR) just as the service prepares to make a production decision for the system. Gilmore described the MNVR, saying the radio “did not meet commanders’ operational needs for a mid-tier network solution.” and “provided no value added in mitigating the significant impacts to communications and mission execution experienced in a satellite communications (SATCOM)-denied environment.” Only time will tell if the report affects the Army’s production decision.
- Lockheed Martin projects slow but steady growth in the international sale of its missile- and air-defense systems. Products such as the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system, Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS) and Patriot Advanced Capability (PAC-3) interceptor have all been garnering interest from European and Middle East governments and the company expects to win various competitions over the next few years. Missile and fire control division is responsible for about 50 percent of their international purchases.
Middle East North Africa
- The Algerian Navy has commissioned their third C28A-class corvette after delivery from China. Featuring a displacement of 3,000 metric tons, the 360-foot-long stealth-guided missile ship can conduct offshore defense operations and long-distance combat missions. The three vessels, ordered in 2011, come as part of a wider naval modernization by Algeria which includes orders for two Meko A-200AN frigates, and two Project 636 Varshavyanka (Kilo class) diesel electric submarines from Russia, which are due in 2018.
- Rafael’s SPICE 1000 EO/GPS-guided munitions are to be adopted by the Israeli Air Force as the weapon enters into its final development stage. Integration will take place on all fighter squadrons with F-16C/D “Barak” aircraft first in line. Features of Spice include being camera operated with real time maneuver and response abilities when facing fixed and mobile targets.
- Thales Deutschland has been contracted to upgrade German Army training simulators. The work, due for completion in 2017, includes all small arms/handheld anti-tank weapons shooting simulator training devices in use with the German army. A total of 185 AGSHP shooting simulators are covered under the $5.5 million contract.
- A series of human errors has been blamed for the torpedoing of a fishing vessel by the Taiwanese Navy. A draft report of the investigation seen by media sources found that the patrol vessel was loaded with live missiles, and to enable drills to be carried out, a simulator box was supposed to be installed between the missile control and launch tube. Only two of the four missiles, however, were installed with the simulators. Petty Officer 2nd Class Kao Chia-chun, unsupervised, had selected salvo fire of two missiles and one of those missiles was not connected to a simulator. As a result, the missile fired when activated.
- Policemen and soldiers in the Afghan Army are said to be cashing in spent ammunition to scrap dealers amid corruption, poor pay and conditions experienced. With average pay at around $200 per month, a kilo of scrap can be sold for $2.55 with soldiers happy to spend 5-10 minutes firing until merchants have what they need. Other reports found troops in Helmand and Kunduz provinces firing 7,000 artillery shells in May alone. Commenting on the issue, an Afghan official said “We asked army commanders about it and said if each shell killed only one person, we should have 3,500 Taliban dead in each province….It’s very clear they fire aimlessly and collect the shell casings for copper and sell them.” $300 million worth of ammunition was given by the US to Afghan security forces last year.
- The world’s largest amphibious aircraft has rolled off the production line in China. Developed by state aircraft maker Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the AG600 is about the same size as a Boeing 737, and plans are to use it to perform marine rescue missions and fight forest fires. The aircraft has a maximum flight range of 4,500 km and can collect 12 tons of water in 20 seconds.
- Rafael’s SPICE munitions: