F-35 Has Multi-Ship Infrared Search And Track Capability | First Flight Trials Of Osprey 50 | South Korea Moved Patriot Anti-Missile Battery To SeoulJan 08, 2020 05:00 UTC
Ace Electronics Defense Systems won a $64.4 million indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract with firm-fixed-price delivery orders for the production and delivery of manufacturing kits, spare parts and first article testing for the hardware component refresh of the Tactical Tomahawk Weapons Control System (AN/SWG-5(V)6). The AN/SWG-5(V)6 upgrade offers new offensive capabilities to upgraded ships in support of the Maritime Strike Tomahawk, addresses obsolescence risks and improves the operability and maintainability of the system hardware. ATWCS is an evolutionary upgrade to the current Tomahawk Weapon Control System. ATWCS replaces 1970s’ technology with COTS/GOTS hardware and software, thereby reducing overall reaction time and operator workload, enhancing the training capabilities at all levels, and improving Tomahawk strike effectiveness. ATWCS incorporates an open-system architecture to provide for future growth, eliminates stand-alone Tomahawk desktop computers, and enhances command-and-control interoperability. The single-award, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract has a five-year ordering period, which, if all line item quantities are ordered, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to $64,405,123, with an ordering period to January 2025. Work will take place in Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, and is expected to be complete by January 2025.
Edwards Air Force Base announced in a press release, which covers the achievements made by the F-35 Integrated Test Force in 2019, that the test team had tested the multi-ship Infrared Search and Track capability. Having a multi-ship capability could allow 2 or more F-35s to generate a weapons quality track of low observable aircraft. Over the past year the Test Force has tested 11 unique F-35 software suites and fielded two. Through those efforts, the service has laid the foundation for increased F-35 lethality and survivability with functions like multi-ship Infrared Search and Track.
Middle East & Africa
A secretive spy plane that belongs to the US Special Operations Command (SOCOM) was destroyed by terrorists during an attack on a military base in Kenya on January 5, the BBC reports. The attack on Manda Bay Airfield also killed one American military service member and two contractors. Four al-Shabaab militants were also killed. The US military said in a statement that two others from the Department of Defense were wounded. “The wounded Americans are currently in stable condition and being evacuated,” the BBC quotes US military’s Africa Command. The Associated Press news agency reported that two aircraft, two US helicopters and multiple vehicles were destroyed at the airstrip.
The Egyptian military released footage of Ka-52 Alligator Attack Helicopters operating from one of its Mistral landing helicopter dock (LHD) amphibious assault ships for the first time on January 4. Two Ka-52s were seen taking off and landing on the deck of Gamal Abdel Nasser, which also carried two AH-64 Apache attack helicopters and a Chinook transport helicopter. Unlike the Apaches, which were fitted with rocket pods, the Ka-52s were not seen carrying anything on their hardpoints, although they have a fixed 30 mm gun on their starboard side.
Leonardo announced the first flight trials of its Osprey 50 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar in a press release. The flight trials were carried out in support of production for a Strategic ISR platform and Collins Aerospace’s Tactical Synthetic Aperture Radar (TacSAR) reconnaissance system. “Osprey is a multi-mode radar family based on solid-state AESA technology and remains the only system of its type currently available which delivers full spherical coverage with no moving parts“, it says in the release. Leonardo has also re-used technology developed for the Osprey family to refresh its Seaspray family of AESA surveillance radars. Hardware and signal processing techniques developed for Osprey have been introduced back into Seaspray to increase capability and reduce system weight. say the firm.
South Korea has moved a Patriot anti-missile battery to the center of Seoul in a bid to beef up its defense against the growing threat from the North, local news reported on Tuesday. The move came as the North has threatened to unveil a new strategic weapon “in the near future” as tensions rise over stalled nuclear talks between Pyongyang and Washington. The Patriot battery was believed to be equipped with PAC-2 and PAC-3 missiles designed to intercept incoming aircraft and missiles at altitudes of around 12-25 miles. The Patriot missile defense system is part of the Korean Air and Missile Defense (KAMD) system, one of the three defense systems operated by the South to counter growing nuclear and missile threats from the North. The other two are the Kill Chain preemptive strike, and the Korea Massive Punishment and Retaliation (KMPR) plan.
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