$151M Humvee Contract to AM General | France & Germany to Share C-130Js | Germany Suspends Eurofighter Typhoon – Complex, Expensive Production CitedOct 06, 2016 00:58 UTC
- AM General has been awarded a $151 million contract to provide High-Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (Humvees) to Afghanistan, Ukraine, and the US National Guard and Reserves. The deals cover new vehicles, automotive kits, spare parts, and training. Afghanistan will receive 360 M1152A1B2 and 73 M1151A1B1 variants while Ukraine and US forces will receive 40 M1152 and 237 M997A3 ambulance vehicles respectively.
- In order to fill a capability gap before the introduction of what comes from the Future Vertical Lift (FVL) program, the US Army is considering a new block upgrade of the AH-64 Apache attack helicopter. This new AH-64F variant will have an improved radar, forward-looking infrared sensor, and a new helmet, according to Col. Jeff Hager, the service’s program manager. However, a better look at the time frame for FVL’s introduction will be necessary in order to judge the need for a full block upgrade.
Middle East & North Africa
- Three US Navy warships have been dispatched to the coast of Yemen following an attack on an Emirati HSV-2 by Houthi forces. The USS Nitze (DDG-94), USS Mason (DDG-87) and the afloat forward staging base USS Ponce (AFSB(I)-15) are now stationed near Bab Al Mandeb strait where the missile attack took place. Prior to its use by the UAE, the HSV-2 was once used by US Military Sealift Command.
- A pooling initiative is to commence between the French and German defense ministries for the purchase and joint use of C-130J transport aircraft following the signing of a declaration of intent in Paris. Berlin announced plans to purchase between four and six of the aircraft from Lockheed Martin which would be added to those recently ordered by France. The move is part of a solution to fill a German cargo and transport aircraft capability gap caused by delays and limitations of the larger A400M from Airbus and the retirement of their older Transall cargo planes.
- Raytheon and Kongsberg have successfully test-fired an extended range version of Raytheon’s Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) from the National Advanced Surface-to-Air Missile System (NASAMS). By simply pairing the sensor from the AMRAAM to an Evolved Sea Sparrow missile (ESSM) the new variant gives a 50% in maximum range and 70% in maximum altitude. Modifications undertaken to accommodate the new missile include extending the top row of three canisters by a foot, and Raytheon is targeting first deliveries of the missile in the 2020 timeframe.
- A lack of orders alongside a complex production process has seen production of the Eurofighter Typhoon suspended and potentially removed from the German market, at least until 2018. A joint European offering, the Typhoon receives components manufactured at four plants in Germany, Britain, Italy and Spain, which makes the production very complicated and expensive. It’s believed that Spain may soon follow in suspending production but production lines are likely to remain open in Italy and the UK. This is due to orders arranged between Italy and Kuwait as well as UK ambitions to shift Eurofighters to Saudi Arabia.
- Disclosures made by a South Korean lawmaker have revealed that the two Green Pine radars bought from Israel’s Elbit Systems have been failing repeatedly. Data submitted to Rep. Lee Chul-gyu showed that the radars have stopped working 21 times over the past three years which resulted in the anti-ballistic missile radars being out of operation for up to nine days at a time. An anonymous air force official said the reason was because moisture entered the radars, condensing inside the antennae. A temporary solution by the service was to install air conditioners inside the units and plans are in motion to house them inside “radomes” next year.
- India is anxious to close a number of defense and nuclear related deals with the Pentagon as the Obama administration enters its final months. Deals including the purchase of 22 MQ-1 Predator UAVs are in advanced stages of negotiations and should be finalized within the coming months. But with a potentially radical regime change on the cards in Washington, New Delhi may want to capitalize on the good relationship between leaders Modi and Obama as the prospect of an “America First” Trump administration may spark a US pullback from Asia.
Elta’s Green Pine: