A-10 Replacement Recommendations Coming Soon | Russian Drone Evades IDF Patriot Interceptors | Su-30 to Test Fire BrahMos this MonthAug 09, 2016 00:55 UTC
- Recommendations for the replacement of the A-10 Warthog are to be expected as soon as September. While recent reporting on the OA-X close-air support (CAS) aircraft has leaked some information on the program, it looks likely that USAF will want to acquire two CAS platforms. This would involve a a low flight-hour cost light attack aircraft augmenting the A-10 in the short term, with the service procuring an existing or potential new CAS design. Also on the table are rewinging the A-10 or buying just one replacement platform.
- Northrop Grumman has been awarded $45 million as part of the Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) program. The USAF deal will see NG conduct work on processor replacement and support hardware with completion expected for April 2018. First fielded in 2005, LAIRCM provides automatic protection against shoulder-fired, vehicle-launched, and other infrared-guided missiles for large transport and rotary-wing aircraft.
Middle East North Africa
- The drone that evaded two IDF Patriot interceptors over the Golan Heights was Russian. President Vladimir Putin made the omission to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu when the two leaders discussed the incident. Two F-16s were scrambled, but an air-to-air missile missed the target. Russian officials are adamant that the intrusion was accidental.
- An unknown patron is helping to fund the development of Ukraine’s Grom-2 tactical ballistic missile system. The mysterious foreign buyer has pumped some $40 million allowing engineers to develop the weapon further and could begin testing as soon as this fall. In order to defeat Russian missile capabilities, Grom-2 is likely to use the “Korshun” cruise missile and unpredictable flight trajectories.
- Thales UK has lodged a protest against MBDA’s award to develop a laser-directed energy weapon demonstrator for the British MoD. While the reasoning behind the complaint currently remains unknown, both companies and the MoD’s Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl) have refused to comment on the issue. Thales UK was able to lodge the complaint via European procurement laws, which allows losing competitors to challenge a decision in a ten-day cooling off period between when the MoD informs bidders of their contract award decision and when the final conclusion of the contract is announced.
- Indian Su-30s are to drop-test the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile later this month for the first time. The test is to ensure the fighter missile release system is operational ahead of its final test against a decommissioned naval vessel due to take place at the end of the year. Once the weapon has been successfully integrated on the Su-30s, it’s expected that work will commence on developing smaller versions for the Navy’s MiG 29-K and new Rafale fighters.
- Pakistan is to receive an undisclosed number of AW139 helicopters after signing contracts with manufacturer Leonardo. Capable of operating in hot and high conditions, the AW130s will engage in transport and EMS missions. Islamabad now joins a growing number of governments operating the AW139 including Italy, Ireland, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Thailand.
- US weapons have been pictured in the possession of Islamic State linked militants in Afghanistan. The groups media outlet published the photographs which included an American portable rocket launcher, radio, grenades, and other gear not commonly used by Afghan troops, as well as close up views of identification cards for a US Army soldier, Specialist Ryan Larson. While Larson has been accounted for by the US military command in Kabul, it is believed that the gear was abandoned during operations in Nangarhar Province where US special operations troops were assisting Afghan security forces against militants.
USMC pilots on the F-35B: