The Navy awarded Timken Gears and Services a $147.4 million contract modification for Main Reduction Gear shipsets for Arleigh Burke guided missile destroyers. The gear is designed to transfer power from a pair of main gas turbine engines to propulsion shafts of the vessels. Each of the Arleigh Burke ships has one gear assembly for each of the two propulsion shafts. In 2016 Timken has been awarded a $1.04 billion contract for main reduction gears for the Arleigh Burke destroyers. The destroyers are equipped with the Aegis combat system which integrates the ship’s sensors and weapons systems to engage anti-ship missile threats. Timken will perform work within the US and is expected to complete work by November 2022.
Northrop Grumman Systems won $65.2 million to deliver three Triton UAVs. The company is building the MQ-4C Triton to fly maritime surveillance missions as long as 24 hours at altitudes of more than 10 miles to enable coverage out to 2,000 nautical miles. The UAV’s suite of sensors can detect and classify different types of ships automatically. The Triton is planned to be an important component of the Navy’s 21st century strategy for conducting surveillance of surface ship and submarine traffic in the vast Pacific and other oceans. The Triton UAV will work together with the Navy’s P-8A Poseidon manned maritime patrol aircraft. The contract is for the Navy and the government of Australia and also provides equipment and associated materials for three ground stations. Northrop will perform work within the US and scheduled completion date is in June 2020.
Middle East & Africa
Israel is looking at CH-53 King Stallion as a possible replacement for the CH-53 Yas’ur (Sea Stallion) helicopters that have been in Israeli service for more than 40 years. According to Jane’s, Israeli Air Force officials let Lockheed Martin know about their intention. Israel started looking for a replacement for its Sea Stallion last year. The CH-53 King Stallion, which is designed to transport dozens of fighters and heavy weaponry to operations on the front or deep inside enemy territory, can carry two heavy SUVs in its cabin. The CH-53K has three hooks for carrying cargo on ropes. The Yas’ur has only one. The King Stallion can be refueled mid-air and has cutting-edge autopilot and landing features, enabling its pilot to touch down almost without using his hands.
BAE Systems won a $39.5 million contract action for the French MQ-9 FMS Sensor Pod effort. The General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper or Predator B is a UAV capable of remotely controlled or autonomous flight operations. It is the first hunter-killer UAV designed for long-endurance, high-altitude surveillance. The drone is designed primarily for attack missions but can also be used for surveillance, close air support and reconnaissance. The MQ-9 has a a high cruise speed, a flight ceiling up to 40,000 feet and can carry a larger sensor and weapons payload than its predecessors. France introduced the Reaper in 2013, when it requested the purchase of 16 MQ-9 aircraft and associated equipment at a cost of $1.5 billion. The new contract provides for the production of FMS sensor pods, which will be utilized on the French Air Force MQ-9 Block 5 aircraft and Block 30 Mobile Ground Control Stations. Work will take place in Nashua, New Hampshire, and is scheduled to be finished by April 30, 2023.
Irkutsk Aviation Plan completed the assembly of the fifth Yak-152 prototype, according to local reports.The Yak-52 is a Russian trainer aircraft by Yakovlev Design Bureau. The first prototype flew on September 29, 2016. The aircraft is intended to provide primary pilot training, professional selection, and occupational guidance for future military fighter pilots. The Russian Ministry of Defense contracted Yakovlev in June 2015 to supply approximately 150 Yak-152 aircraft by 2020. The Yak-152 trainer aircraft has a length of 7.72m, wing span of 8.82m and a height of 2.47m. The maximum take-off weight is 1,320kg and it can carry a maximum fuel load of 200kg. It features a monocoque fuselage made up of four longerons. Reportedly, a sixth prototype is under construction.
The Indian Air Force wants to arm its fleet of Su-30MKI multirole fighters with Rafael Advanced Defense System I-Derby extended range (ER) beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM). The Indian Air Force is reportedly in talks with Rafael to acquire the I-Derby ER, which has a range of 100 km because of it is superior to the aging Russian Vympel R-77 air-to-air missile, currently under service of the IAF. These developments come after the fire-and-forget I-Derby ER missile, which features a software-defined radar seeker and a dual-pulse solid rocket motor, was selected to be the primary AAM to arm the IAF’s indigenously designed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft following successful test-firings in July 2018.
Watch: Maiden Sortie for ‘Russian-Style’ F-16 Fighter Jet
Northrop Grumman won a $66.3 million modification in support of the Broad Area Maritime Surveillance – Demonstrator (BAMS-D) Program. The deal provides for operation and maintenance services and includes logistics and sustaining engineering support. The Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) UAV was intended to provide persistent, maritime surveillance and reconnaissance capability. The demonstrator program supported real-world operations under US Northern Command (NORTHCOM). By June 2012, the BAMS-D aircraft continued to support more than 50 percent of maritime intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in theater and had flown more than 5,500 combat hours in support of combat operations since 2008. Raytheon will perform work under the current modification in Patuxent River, Maryland as well as Rancho Bernardo, California and other locations and is expected to complete its work in June 2020.
The Navy tapped Colonna’s Shipyard with $9.3 million in support of the USS San Francisco or SSN-711. The contract is for
demilitarization of the exterior hull, internal equipment, bulkheads, decking, piping, and other fixtures. Work will take place in Portsmouth, Virginia and is scheduled to be finished by September this year. The San Francisco is a Los Angeles Class nuclear submarine. On January 8, 2005, the submarine collided with an undersea mountain southeast of Guam. The ship’s forward ballast tanks and her sonar dome were severely damaged, but her inner hull was not breached and there was no damage to the nuclear reactor. Repairs were made. San Francisco returned to Point Loma from her sixth deployment in October 2016.
Embraer is close to the end of its KC-390 military certification tests, Jane’s reports. The company’s goal is for the aircraft to enter service with the Brazilian Air Force at the end of the year. The KC-390 is medium-size, twin-engine jet-powered military transport aircraft. Embraer received a $1.3 billion development order from the Brazilian Air Force (FAB) for its KC-390 medium-weight military transport jet in April 2009. The aircraft made its first flight in February 2015. KC-390 utilizes computed air release point technology integrated with fly-by-wire system to provide greater accuracy during air dropping, thereby reducing crew workload. The next step for the aircraft will be to complete continuous computed drop point (CCDP) certification, combat offload, and aerial refueling. Other tests will be for the KC-390’s self-protection system, both the chaff and flare and the direct infrared countermeasure (DIRCM) capability. However, it is possible that some tests may be pushed to 2020.
Middle East & Africa
The Belorussian 558 ARP company completed the deliveries of all 12 refurbished and upgraded Sukhoi Su-30K heavyweight multirole fighters ordered by Angola. Angola’s fighters had been upgraded to Su-30SM standard, giving them the ability to fire anti-ship and air-to-air missiles. They are also fitted with jammers. The SU-30 is a twin-engine, two-seat super maneuverable fighter aircraft. The Su-20SM has improved avionics including glass cockpit and Bars-R radar, amongst others. It has canards and AL-31FP engines with thrust vector control for improved maneuvrability.
Sikorsky responded to the German „Schwerer Transporthubschrauber“ STH Program’s call for competition. It is offering the CH-53K King Stallion. A formal request for proposals for the “Schwerer Transporthubschrauber” (STH) program is expected this summer to replace the older CH-53 the German Air Force currently flies. The CH-53K has flown more than 1,400 test hours and has met all the outer reaches of the test envelope, according to Sikorsky. The King Stallion’s test program so far has included high altitude, hot temperature, and degraded visual environment flights, maximum weight single-point cargo hook sling load of 36,000 pounds (16,329 kilograms), forward flight speed of over 200 knots, 60 degrees angle of bank turns, altitude of 18,500 feet mean sea level (MSL), 12-degree slope landings and takeoffs; external load auto-jettison; and gunfire testing. Boeing’s CH-47F is another expected competitor for the program.
India’s investigation into the fatal crash of a Mirage 2000 fighter in February found that the incident was probably caused by an issue with the jet’s fly-by-wire flight control system. Reportedly, a glitch in the Mirage 2000’s flight computer that kicks in without warning, causes the aircraft to behave unpredictably. Apparently, Indian Air Force flight records examined by the Court of Inquiry show at least four such incidents in the past. In each incident the aircraft suddenly and without command from the pilot, jerked its nose towards the ground. Then, the nose would jerk upwards. Each time, the aircraft has continued these so called “pitch oscillations” for several seconds before resuming normal flight. Dassault supplies the flight computer. The company initially offered the explanation that the “pitch rate gyrometers”, which are sensors that tell the flight computer the aircraft’s attitude, were not securely fitted. However, the Mirage 2000s behaved perfectly for the rest of the flight when the incidents occurred. Dassault has yet to comment on the assumptions of a faulty flight computer.
The Australian Navy was tailed by the Chinese Military as it travelled towards Vietnam on the South Chinese Sea. The HMAS Canberra was ending a three-month-long tour of seven Asian nations involving three other Australian warships, aircraft and more than 1,200 defense personnel. The ships journeyed near islands controversially claimed by Beijing. Defense officials confirmed, that the ships had a “professional” and “friendly” interaction with the People’s Liberation Army during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019, an Australian Defense Forces regional engagement mission.
Watch: IMDEX Asia 2019 – Iver Huitfeldt-class MRCV, VARD new LST & PMLV, Rafael C-Dome and Sea-Spotter
Latest updates[?]: Sikorsky responded to the German „Schwerer Transporthubschrauber“ STH Program’s call for competition. It is offering the CH-53K King Stallion. A formal request for proposals for the "Schwerer Transporthubschrauber" (STH) program is expected this summer to replace the older CH-53 the German Air Force currently flies. The CH-53K has flown more than 1,400 test hours and has met all the outer reaches of the test envelope, according to Sikorsky. The King Stallion’s test program so far has included high altitude, hot temperature, and degraded visual environment flights, maximum weight single-point cargo hook sling load of 36,000 pounds (16,329 kilograms), forward flight speed of over 200 knots, 60 degrees angle of bank turns, altitude of 18,500 feet mean sea level (MSL), 12-degree slope landings and takeoffs; external load auto-jettison; and gunfire testing. Boeing’s CH-47F is another expected competitor for the program.
From 1971-1975, 110 “CH-53G Mittlerer Transporthubschrauber” derivatives of the CH-53D Sea Stallions were built in Germany. Though they share the CH-53E’s ability to lift medium-heavy loads, including up to 2 of Germany’s Wiesel armored infantry support vehicles, the CH-53Gs lack the 3rd engine and additional features of the improved CH-53E Super Stallions that have been operated by the US Marine Corps since 1981. A 2002 decision set a future force goal of 80 CH-53G and upgraded CH-53GS helicopters in the German Army, via modernization and life extension projects.
Which leads us to the current modernization project, even as Germany and France prepare their European Heavy-Lift Helicopter project for introduction around 2020. That effort is also surrounded by more urgent modifications, including one set that aims to create longer-range combat search and rescue capabilities:
Latest updates[?]: India’s investigation into the fatal crash of a Mirage 2000 fighter in February found that the incident was probably caused by an issue with the jet’s fly-by-wire flight control system. Reportedly, a glitch in the Mirage 2000’s flight computer that kicks in without warning, causes the aircraft to behave unpredictably. Apparently, Indian Air Force flight records examined by the Court of Inquiry show at least four such incidents in the past. In each incident the aircraft suddenly and without command from the pilot, jerked its nose towards the ground. Then, the nose would jerk upwards. Each time, the aircraft has continued these so called “pitch oscillations” for several seconds before resuming normal flight. Dassault supplies the flight computer. The company initially offered the explanation that the “pitch rate gyrometers”, which are sensors that tell the flight computer the aircraft’s attitude, were not securely fitted. However, the Mirage 2000s behaved perfectly for the rest of the flight when the incidents occurred. Dassault has yet to comment on the assumptions of a faulty flight computer.
IAF Mirage 2000TH takeoff
In an effort to offset the growing number of age-related combat aircraft retirements, India is engaged in a round of fighter fleet upgrades. In December 2006, India Defence reported that the Indian Air Force was “close to finalizing” a EUR 1.5 billion (about $2 billion) deal to upgrade its fleet of 51 49 Mirage-2000 ‘Vajra’ fighter jets.
The aim was to give the aircraft, inaugurated into IAF service in 1985-1988, another 20-25 years of service life. Of course, “close to finalizing” means something very different in Indian defense circles than it does elsewhere. It took 4 years before there was even a preliminary agreement, and 5 years later, the negotiated agreement appears to be higher than original reports. So, what is India getting for its money?
Latest updates[?]: The Australian Navy was tailed by the Chinese Military as it travelled towards Vietnam on the South Chinese Sea. The HMAS Canberra was ending a three-month-long tour of seven Asian nations involving three other Australian warships, aircraft and more than 1,200 defense personnel. The ships journeyed near islands controversially claimed by Beijing. Defense officials confirmed, that the ships had a "professional" and "friendly" interaction with the People's Liberation Army during Indo-Pacific Endeavour 2019, an Australian Defense Forces regional engagement mission.
In May of 2006 the Royal Australian Navy announced its decision to expand its naval expeditionary capabilities. HMAS Manoora and Kanimbla would be replaced with substantially larger and more capable modern designs, featuring strong air support. Navantia and Tenix offered a 27,000t Landing Helicopter Dock (LHD) design that resembled the Strategic Projection Ship (Buque de Proyeccion Estrategica) under construction for the Spanish Navy. The DCNS-Thales Australia team, meanwhile, proposed a variation of the 21,300t Mistral Class that is serving successfully with the French Navy.
Navantia’s larger design eventually won, giving the Spanish firm an A$ 11 billion clean sweep of Australia’s “Air Warfare Destroyer” and LHD programs. These 5 ships will be the core of Australia’s future surface navy. The future HMAS Canberra and HMAS Adelaide will be able to serve as amphibious landing ships, helicopter carriers, floating HQs and medical facilities for humanitarian assistance, and launching pads for UAVs or even short/vertical takeoff fighters.
Saab’s T-X production facility in West Lafayette, Indiana will become one of the Swedish company’s major sites according to CEO Hakan Buskhe. The T-X is an American/Swedish advanced jet trainer. It was announced on September 27, 2018 that the aircraft would become the Air Force’s new advanced jet trainer, replacing the T-38 Talon. 351 aircraft and 46 simulators are to be supplied at a cost of $9.2 billion under the T-X trainer program. Buskhe believes, the trainer aircraft program will open new opportunities an the aircraft has potential to be sold around the world, defensenews reports.
The US Navy kicked off the Block 2 upgrade for the EA-18G Growler aircraft. Jane’s reports, that the USN issued a request for information in late May, in which it announced the intention to procure non-recurring engineering in support of EA-18G Growler Block 2, including Electronic Attack Unit Surrogate Processor, AN/ALQ-218(V)4 RF receiver system, and AN/ALQ-227(V)2 communication countermeasures. The Growler is a variant of Boeing’s F-18F Super Hornet. The aircraft provides tactical jamming and electronic protection to the carrier air wing. The Navy will have its existing Growler fleet brought in for the Block II upgrades, which will incorporate new sensors and some of the Super Hornet Block III upgrades – like conformal fuel tanks. The Growler’s sensors upgrades will do some of the analysis work previously done by pilots, enabling the pilots to process data more efficiently.
Middle East & Africa
France donated two aircraft to Senegal on Thursday. The two Tb30 Epsilon will help train pilots at the Air Force School on Thies near Dakar. The aircraft are part of a program to transfer a total of seven military planes from France to the Senegalese Air Force School. The Tb30 is a single-engine military trainer, that can carry out complete basic flight training, including aerobatics, instrument, night, formation, combat maneuvers and visual flight rules, or instrument flight rules navigation. It is armed with two 7.62mm general purpose machine gun pods which can fire munitions at the rate of 500 to 600 rounds a minute. The machine gun has 853m/s muzzle velocity and weighs 10.5kg.
Raytheon’s Standard Missile-3, Standard Missile-2 and evolved SeaSparrow Missile played a part in a NATO exercise called Formidable Shield 2019. The two-week exercise took place at the UK defense ministry’s Hebrides Range located on the Western Isles of Scotland. The Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO conducted the exercise on behalf of the US 6th Fleet. The SM-3 was fired at a simulated target, the SM-2 and the Evolved SeaSparrow Missile engaged targets simulating anti-ship cruise missiles. The SM-3 interceptor is a defensive weapon used to destroy short- to intermediate-range ballistic missiles. The SM-2 provides superior anti-air warfare and limited anti-surface warfare capability against advanced anti-ship missiles and aircraft out to 90 nautical miles. The Evolved SeaSparrow Missile provides self-defense battlespace and firepower against high-speed, highly maneuverable anti-ship missiles in the naval environment.
Airbus presented a mock-up of the military version of the H160 helicopter. The H160M was developed for the French Armed Forces’ Joint Light Helicopter Program. The program will see 169 helicopters delivered to the country’s three armed forces. The company presented the model at an event at its Marignane facility, during which French defense minister Florence Parly announced that the launch of the Joint Light Helicopter Program has been brought forward from 2022 to 2021. This means, the helicopter can eventually enter service two years early. The H160M will replace all helicopter types in the French Military except for the NHIndustries NH90, Airbus Helicopters Tiger, and Airbus Helicopters H225M Caracal.
The Hellenic Navy received its first modernized P-3B maritime patrol aircraft as part of the Hellenic Navy P-3B maritime patrol aircraft mid-life upgrade and modernization program implementation. Representatives from the Hellenic Navy, Lockheed Martin and Hellenic Aerospace Industry hosted a ceremony on May 17. The government-to-government agreement between the United States and Greece was announced in 2015, providing for the re-activation of one Hellenic Navy P-3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft, which was the recently delivered aircraft. The agreement also includes the modernization of four Hellenic Navy P-3B aircraft through the Mid-Life Upgrade Program. The P-3 Orion is used for homeland security, anti-piracy operations, humanitarian relief, search and rescue, intelligence gathering, antisubmarine warfare and, recently, to assist in air traffic control and natural disaster relief support. The Hellenic Navy operated the P-3 fleet for 15 years.
Linda Reynolds will be Australia’s new defense minister and Melissa Price will be the country’s defense industry minister. Scott Morrison, Australia’s Prime Minister, announced the new leadership on May 26. Alex Hawke will be new assistant defense minister and Darren Chester will continue his role as minister for veterans’ affairs and defense personnel. The leadership change comes after Australia’s 2019 elections, in which the Liberal-National coalition reached about 80% of the votes. Before the election, Reynolds was the defense industry minister while Price was minister of the environment.
Watch: THE DEADLY DUO- BRAHMOS WITH SU 30MKI !! FULL ANALYSIS
Latest updates[?]: The Hellenic Navy received its first modernized P-3B maritime patrol aircraft as part of the Hellenic Navy P-3B maritime patrol aircraft mid-life upgrade and modernization program implementation. Representatives from the Hellenic Navy, Lockheed Martin and Hellenic Aerospace Industry hosted a ceremony on May 17. The government-to-government agreement between the United States and Greece was announced in 2015, providing for the re-activation of one Hellenic Navy P-3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft, which was the recently delivered aircraft. The agreement also includes the modernization of four Hellenic Navy P-3B aircraft through the Mid-Life Upgrade Program. The P-3 Orion is used for homeland security, anti-piracy operations, humanitarian relief, search and rescue, intelligence gathering, antisubmarine warfare and, recently, to assist in air traffic control and natural disaster relief support. The Hellenic Navy operated the P-3 fleet for 15 years.
Greece’s Hellenic Air Force currently operates 4 older P-3B Orion maritime patrol aircraft, which were delivered to the HAF from 1993 – 1996. They are reaching the limits of their airframe life, but Greece is nearing the end of their fiscal rope. In 2008, the odds appeared to tilt toward new aircraft, with at least EUR 250 million (then about $350 million) reportedly set aside for the winner of a 5-aircraft maritime patrol competition. In 2014, it became clear that Greece was considering another option…
Huntington Ingalls cut the first steel plate of the Columbia ballistic missile submarine at Newport News Shipbuilding in Virginia. A plasma-burning machine cut the steel plate, which will be used to build the SSBN 826, according to a news release. The Columbia Class boats will replace the Ohio Class nuclear ballistic subs. The Columbia Class program’s purpose it to build 12 new SSBNs and the goal is to procure the leadership in FY2021. The Navy’s proposed FY2020 budget requests $1,698.9 million in advance procurement funding and $533.1 million in research and development funding for the program.
L-3 Mustang Technology won a $9.2 million contract in support of the 57mm 332 High Explosive-4 Bolt Guided Cartridge ammunition. The modification provides for long-lead material for the HE-4G cartridge. The HE-4G is a low-cost 57 mm guided smart ammunition intended for use on the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship and new Fast Frigate, as well as the US Coast Guard’s National Security and Offshore Patrol Cutters. It is designed to function in the 57mm MK 110 GM, and is intended for combating surface and air targets. The fixed cartridge consists of a Radio Frequency Guided Projectile (RFGP), brass cartridge case, and energetics qualified for Navy use. L-3 Mustang will perform work in Plano, Texas and is expected to finish work by October 2020.
Middle East & Africa
Israel’s share of the UAV market is shrinking, according to Israeldefense. While the US industry is increasing and Russia and China have started to export, the Israeli-made MALE UAVs, such as IAI’s Heron, Elbit Systems’ Hermes-900, and similar systems are facing a decline in exports. According to the newspaper the threat to the industry is now expanding. Regulatory revisions along with the US-Aid channel make it easier for the Americans to sell systems while also making it easier for other countries to buy US-made systems. The Netherlands, France, Spain, the UK, and Italy have all purchased the MQ-9 system. In April, Greece announced its intention to also purchase the American drone. Israeldefense urges relevant state organs to address the issue of Israel’s declining UAV industry and provide support in several ways to avoid the threat becoming a national problem.
The Swedish Army presented its StrisimPC simulation system at the 2019 ITEC in Stockholm, Jane’s reports. StrisimPC is used for crew skills and low-level command training. It supplements its core software, Virtual Battlespace 3 from Bohemia Interactive Simulations, with specifically developed applications to support training on particular platforms and weapon systems, including CV9040 infantry fighting vehicle, the Archer self-propelled howitzer, the CV90 forward observation vehicle, the Kongsberg Protector remote weapon station (RWS), and the RBS-70 air-defense missile system. The ITEC International Training and Education Conference is an annual forum for the Military and Civil Simulation, Training and Education Community. It was held from May 14 to May 16 in Stockholm, celebrating its 30th anniversary.
Russia received its first of six MiG-35UB two-seat multirole fighter, that it had ordered in 2018. The defense ministry expects one more MiG-35UB and four MiG-35S deliveries in 2019 and is preparing a second contract to sign in June. The State Armament Program 2018-2027 authorizes procurement of between 24 and 36 MiG-35s. Russia’s MiG-35UB twin-seat light multirole fighter made its public debut on January 27, 2017. The MiG-35 relies on Klimov RD-33MK engines from the MiG-29K/KUB. With eight weapon stations, the MiG-35 can carry up to seven tons of unguided and guided weapons, including land-strike, anti-ship and air-to-air missiles.
Japan wants to buy 105 US-made stealth warplanes, Donald Trump said while in Tokyo on a state visit. This purchase would make Japan the ally with the largest F-35 fleet. The US is developing and fielding a family of fifth-generation strike fighter aircraft integrating stealth technologies with advanced sensors and computer networking capabilities for the United States Air Force, Marine Corps, and Navy, eight international partners, and four Foreign Military Sales customers. The Japanese government first placed an order for 42 F-35As in December 2011. By December 2018, the existing order was updated. At the time it was reported that Tokyo would be adding 63 F-35As and 42 F-35B variants to its order, in addition to the already placed request for 42 F-35As.
Watch: SAS 2019 – 30DX FFM, Virginia-class Block V SSN & Columbia-class SSBN, MAD-FIRES, Excalibur N5
BAE Systems won $8.9 million in support of the MK45 gun mount. The deal provides engineering, technical, logistics services and technical data to support the MK 45 5 inch Gun system design, development, fabrication, production, operation and integration. The MK45 is designed to engage surface and air targets and to provide naval surface fire support for expeditionary operations. The gun mount includes a 20 round automatic loader drum. The gun’s maximum firing rate is 16-20 rounds from the loader drum per minute. Work for the engineering services and waterfront services contract will take place in Minnesota and Kentucky and is scheduled to be finished by May next year.
The Navy awarded Boeing a $51.5 million contract in support of the C-40A Clipper aircraft. The contract provides sustainment engineering services in support of up to 17 Clippers and also includes engineering data, technical publication, access to and distribution of technical data and publications, and other technical support services. The C-40A is a variant of the Boeing next-generation 737-700C civil aircraft. The first of the C-40A aircraft entered service with the United States Naval Reserve Fleet Support Squadron in April 2001. The aircraft are certified to operate in three different configurations: all-passenger, all-cargo or in combination configuration. The aircraft has an aluminium alloy fail-safe fuselage and wing structure and incorporates the strengthened wing design like the one on the 737-800 and Boeing Business Jet. Work will take place in Seattle, Washington and is scheduled to be finished in May 2024.
Middle East & Africa
The US State Department approved several Foreign Military Sales to the United Arab Emirates on May 24. For an estimated cost of $900 million, the DoS gave the OK for a sale of the Advanced Precision Kill Weapon Systems (APKWS) II All-Up-Rounds. Included in the deal is weapon support and test equipment, spares, technical publications, personnel training, other training equipment, transportation, US Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistical and program support. Prime contractor will be BAE Systems. A sale of Javelin Guided Missiles worth $102 million includes System Integration & Checkout (SICO) service, Field Service Representative, US Government and contractor technical, engineering and logistics support services’ tools and test equipment, support equipment, publications and technical documentation, spare and repair parts, and other related elements. Raytheon will be Prime contractor for this FMS. A possible FMS of follow-on blanket order US Marine Corps training and support to the United Emirates Presidential Guard Command is estimated at $100 million. The DoS also approved a possible FMS of RQ-21A Blackjack Unmanned Air Vehicles for an approximate cost of $80 million, which also includes 40 Global Positioning Systems (GPS) with Selective Availability Anti-Spoofing Module (SAASM) Type II (MPE-S), air vehicle support equipment including eight eight Ground Control Stations, four launchers, and four retrievers, spare and repair parts, publications, training, and technical support services. Members of Congress had actually been blocking sales of offensive military equipment to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates for months because of the huge civilian toll from their air campaign in Yemen, as well as human rights abuses such as the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at a Saudi consulate in Turkey. However, President Trump, declared a national emergency because of tensions with Iran in order to go through with the sale.
The State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to Saudi Arabia of aircraft follow-on support and services for an estimated cost of $1.8 billion. Saudi Arabia had requested to buy aircraft, engines, and weapons, publications and technical documentation, support equipment, spare and repair parts, repair and return, calibration support and test equipment, personnel equipment, US Government and contractor technical and logistics support, and other related elements of program support. The DoS also approved a FMS for continued Tactical Air Surveillance System Aircraft support worth $136 million. The prime contractor will be L3 Technologies, Greenville, Texas.
Raytheon won a $355.5 million contract for refurbishment of the AGM-88B missiles for Qatar, Bahrain and Taiwan by the US Air Force. The contract is for Anti-Radiation Missiles (HARM) Replacement Exchange, the refurbishment of AGM-88B missiles and the conversion of AGM-88B into Captive Air Training Missiles. The HARM is a tactical, air-to-surface anti-radiation missile, capable of speeds up to twice the speed of sound. It is designed to home in on electronic transmissions coming from surface-to-air radar systems. The AGM-88 can detect, attack and destroy a radar antenna or transmitter with minimal aircrew input. Raytheon will perform work in Tucson, Arizona, and expects completion by 2027.
The British Royal Air Force started testing the latest version of the BriteCloud missile decoy on its Typhoon fighter aircraft. Leonardo will support a series of trials in which the ‘BriteCloud 55’ Expendable Active Decoy is being trialled for operations with the Royal Air Force (RAF)’s fleet of Eurofighter Typhoon Aircraft. Designed and built by Leonardo Aerospace in Luton, Bedfordshire, BriteCloud is a line of expendable anti-missile decoys. With mission programmable electronics packages, the small canisters come in a number of variants to fit different aircraft. Each canister has spring-loaded airfoils and contains a miniaturized radio-frequency jamming module. In recent tests, the RAF dispensed 33 BriteCloud rounds from Typhoon fighters against a series of simulated battlefield threats. The trials were not only to demonstrate the effectiveness of the decoy, but also that the canisters can be launched safely from the Typhoon.
The Air Force awarded Lockheed Martin a $16.4 million contract modification to support the Taiwan F-16 Peace Phoenix Rising program. Taiwan kicked off its modernization program at the beginning of the year and called for 144 Lockheed Martin F-16 A/B Fighting Falcon’s to be upgraded under the Taiwan F-16 Peace Phoenix Rising program. The F-16 Fighting Falcon is a single-engine, multi-role fighter jet that is primarily used for air-to-air and air-to-surface missions. The modification provides for miscellaneous support work identified during performance of the in-country aircraft modification program, use and maintenance of product support aircraft, and additional support necessary for the successful completion of modification installs. Lockheed will perform work in Fort Worth, Texas and Taiwan and expects completion by the end of May, 2023.
Latest updates[?]: Qatari Emiri Air Force (QEAF) Mirage 2000s flew together with a B-52H Stratofortress and a US F-35A Lightning II in formation over Southwest Asia. The flight was conducted to continue building military-to-military relationships with the QEAF. The B-52H is part of the Bomber Task Force deployed to the US Central Command area of responsibility to defend US forces and interests in the region. The Mirage 2000 is a multirole combat fighter from Dassault Aviation. In 1994, Qatar became the second export customer for the Mirage 2000-5 when it ordered twelve aircraft. In March 2011, Mirage 2000s were deployed to an airbase on Crete as part of Qatar's commitment to assist in the NATO-enforced no-fly-zone over Libya.
UAE KC-30 concept
At the end of DIMDEX 2014 in late March, reports surfaced that Qatar had embarked on a $23 billion shopping spree, buying advanced air defense systems, anti-tank missiles, fast boats, and a mix of utility, attack, and naval helicopters. They also made a pair of high-end aerial purchases with far-reaching implications: long-range aerial tankers, and a medium-range AWACS fleet.