Lockheed Martin won a $13.1 million to provide engineering and management services for Littoral Combat Ship (LCS)-19 Post Shakedown Availability (PSA). LCS-19 is a Freedom Class Littoral Combat Ship. The Freedom Class are small and fast vessels, intended to operate in littoral zones, for example close to the shore. These are designed to combat with small craft, rather than equal warships. These ships are designed to have a shallow draft and operate at high speed. Work will take place in New Jersey, Florida, Virginia, Washington DC. Work is scheduled to be finished by September 2021.
Boeing won a $9.7 million contract modification provides engineering, manufacturing and development support to integrate BRR3.1 software to the Next Generation Jammer on Boeing EA-18G Growler carrier-based electronic warfare aircraft, resulting in BRR3.1 software initial operating capability. EA-18G Growler is an airborne electronic attack (AEA) aircraft, which operates from either an aircraft carrier or from land-bases. The Growler was developed as a replacement for the United States Navy EA-6B Prowler aircraft that entered service in 1971 and is approaching the end of operational life. Work will take place in St. Louis, Missouri, and is expected to be complete by December 2020.
Middle East & Africa
The United Arab Emirates’ first of potentially five GlobalEye swing-role surveillance aircraft has touched down in Abu Dhabi following a delivery flight from Linkoping, Sweden. Saab said that it had commenced deliveries of the Bombardier Global 6000 business jet-based platform that were contracted to the UAE Air Force and Defense (AF&D) under the Swing Role Surveillance System award from late 2015. Deliveries of the remaining two aircraft are set to run through to the end of 2021, while an anticipated contract for two additional platforms has not yet been signed. The ground systems had already been handed over to the UAE AF&D, ahead of the aircraft arrival. The GlobalEye is built around the Saab Erieye Extended Range (ER) radar that is housed in the same external dorsal ‘plank’ as the company’s original Erieye system. Equipped with Gallium Nitride (GaN) and other technologies, the Erieye ER is an active electronically scanned array (AESA) system that doubles the radar’s power efficiency compared with previous Erieye iterations. It has a range in excess of 650 km that can be extended by focusing the radar’s energy.
General Electric has won $707.3 million to supply F110 engines to power F-16 fighter jets of Slovakia, Bulgaria, and Taiwan. The contract includes F110-GE-129 engine production, provision of installs and spares and modernized engine management system computers. According to GE, the F110 powers more than 70 percent of the Air Force’s F-16C/D aircraft, and the 129 variant offers significant mission advantages, including significant additional thrust, for F-15 and F-16 aircraft. For Qatar, the engines will power the twin-engined Boeing F-15QT. Work will take place in Cincinnati and is expected to be finished by December 31.
German defense minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and her French counterpart, Florence Parly, have signed a framework agreement on the Franco-German Main Ground Combat System (MGCS), Germany’s Federal Ministry of Defense (MoD) announced on its website on April 28, describing this as “an important signal for European defense co-operation”. The system will replace German Leopard 2 and French Leclerc main battle tanks (MBTs) starting in the mid-2030s.
The delivery of KM-SAM Block I, developed by South Korea’s Agency of the Defense Development, to the Republic of Korea Air Force (RoKAF) has been completed. The KM-SAM, which is also known as the Cheongung, the first indigenously developed mid-range surface-to-air guided missile, is capable of striking a hostile aircraft at an altitude of up to 40 kilometers. Dubbed the “Korean Patriot,” the system has been deployed since 2015, after the Agency of the Defense Development completed its development in 2011, according to the Defense Acquisition Program Administration.
Watch: Indian Defence Updates : 123 Super Puma For Indian Navy,6 AAM On J20,PAK Midget Submarine Challenge
Bell Boeing Joint Program Office won an $8.1 million contract modification, which adds non-recurring baseline performance rig test efforts in support of the Improved Inlet Solution/Engine Air Particle Separator preliminary design on MV-22 and CV-22 Tiltrotor aircraft. The V-22 Osprey is a joint-service, medium-lift, multimission tilt-rotor aircraft developed by Boeing and Bell Helicopters. The tiltrotor aircraft is available in three configurations: the Combat Assault and Assault Support MV-22 for the USMC and the US Army; the long-range special operations CV-22 for US Special Operations Command (US SOCOM); and the US Navy HV-22, for combat search and rescue, special warfare and fleet logistic support. Work will take place in Indiana, Texas, Pennsylvania and Mississippi.
The Omaha World Herald reports that L3Harris will start converting the first of three KC-135R refueling tankers into WC-135R nuclear radiation sniffing aircraft starting from next month. A US Air Force spokesperson said the first jet is expected to be delivered to the 55th Wing at Offutt Air Force Base in 2022. Maj. Malinda Singleton added that besides removing the refueling boom from the tail of the aircraft, the flight deck will be modernized to the same standard as RC-135S and V/W.
Middle East & Africa
The Boeing AGM-84L Harpoon Block II missiles that the United States approved for Morocco’s Royal Air Force to purchase are the „non-coastal target suppression“ version, the US Federal Register revealed on Monday. This reduction in capability was not mentioned when the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) announced on April 14 that the US State Department had approved the sale of 10 AGM-84Ls for an estimated USD62 million for use by the RMAF’s F-16 multirole fighters. The AGM-84L was designed to have a substantially improved ability to find target ships sailing close to shore or in congested waters.
A court in Vienna has stopped an Austrian investigation into alleged fraud by Airbus and Eurofighter Jagdflugzeug GmbH in connection with a $2 billion Eurofighter jet purchase in 2003, it said on April 27. The investigation was linked to accusations brought by Austria’s defense ministry in 2017, and its closure does not affect a broader criminal investigation of suspected bribery in the same deal that has been going on since 2011, a court spokeswoman said. The ministry triggered a new probe into Airbus and the Eurofighter consortium – which also includes Britain’s BAE Systems and Italy’s Leonardo in February 2017, alleging that they had misled the state about the price, deliverability and equipment of the planes. Among other things, the ministry accused Airbus and the consortium of illegally charging nearly 10% of the purchase price for so-called offset deals, which involve work being given to local companies.
The Royal Air Force is testing an NHS smartphone app that could help prevent the spread of COVID-19. According to the RAF website, personnel at RAF Leeming are trialling the software, led by the station’s digital unit, RAF eXperimental (RAFX), who have been working closely with NHSX and partners. he app uses Bluetooth software to determine a user’s proximity to other devices. If a person shows symptoms or tests positive for the virus, they can choose to share this information with the NHS via the app. An alert will then be sent to other devices they have been near, whose users can then be tested or self-isolate. It is understood that RAFX set up a scenario which simulated people’s experience of shopping. To adhere to social-distancing rules, phones were placed on tables to simulate people clustering in a shopping area.
Airbus pulled out of a joint venture with Thai Airways, the country’s national airline, to provide maintenance, repair, and overhaul services at a civil-military airport near the country’s eastern seaboard. Speaking at a press conference officials from Thailand’s Eastern Economic Corridor office said in comments reported by the state-owned Thai News Agency that Airbus’ decision was prompted by the economic impact of Covid-19.
Watch: USS VERMONT BLOCK 4 VIRGINIA CLASS SUBMARINE COMMISSIONED BY U.S NAVY !
Boeing won a $75.1 million deal in support of the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fighter aircraft Service Life Assessment Program and Service Life Extension Program, Phase C follow-on effort. The Service Life Modification program started in 2018 and is expected to continue until 2040. The production rate is anticipated to peak at 40 aircraft annually. Boeing also won a contract from the USN in March 2019 to manufacture 78 new-build F/A-18E/F Super Hornets with service-life extensions and Block III upgrades incorporated. Work will take place in St. Louis, Missouri and El Segundo, California. The deal provides non-recurring engineering to assess the fatigue life of the aircraft as well as its subsystems and structures to extend the service life of the F/A-18E/F beyond the original design of the 6,000 flight hour service life. Work is expected to be finished by April 2025.
Hydroid Inc. won a $39.4 million modification to exercise Option Year One for production support for the MK-18 Family of Systems – Unmanned Underwater Vehicle systems. Based on the REMUS 100, the Swordfish MK-18 is designed to Search, Classify, and Map (SCM) the Very Shallow Water Region (10?40 ft). The Navy has a total of 24 Swordfish vehicles: EOD Mobile Unit 1 San Diego, CA : 4 Systems (12 Block A Vehicles), Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit 2 (MDSU?2), Norfolk, VA: 1 System (3 Block A Vehicles), Naval Oceanographic and Mine Warfare Command (NOMWC), Stennis, MS: 3 Systems (9 Block B vehicles). The Mk 18 Mod 1 Swordfish UUV is capable of performing low-visible exploration and reconnaissance in support of amphibious landing; MCM operations (including search, classification and mapping; and reacquire and identification); and hydrographic mapping in the VSW zone (10 to 40 feet depth) and the seaward approaches. It is capable of navigating via acoustic transponders in long-baseline or ultra-short-baseline mode or via P-coded GPS. Work will take place Pocasset, Massachusetts and is expected to be complete by April 2024.
Middle East & Africa
A senior commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Ground Force says the corps will soon take delivery of the Fotros unmanned air vehicle. Fotros is the largest UAV built by Iran so far and was unveiled in 2013. Following extensive meetings with the Defense Ministry and evaluation of features of the homegrown drone, the IRGC Ground Force’s Drone Division has decided to utilize Fotros in operational zones.
Hensoldt has revealed a new airborne jammer that forms part of a wider family of electronic warfare (EW) systems it is developing for the NATO electronic attack requirement that the Luftwaffe has committed itself to deliver. The Kalaetron Attack jammerr is billed as a modular system that Hensoldt hopes will be adopted by the Luftwaffe to deliver its wider Luftgestützte Wirkung im Elektromagnetischen Spektrum capability to NATO from 2025. As noted by the German electronics house, the Kalaetron Attack jammer is a new addition to the Kalaetron EW product family that uses fully digitalised hardware and artificial intelligence to detect radar-based threats and neutralize them with targeted electronic countermeasures.
Lockheed Martin won a $67.6 million modification to a Foreign Military Sales contract to India and Taiwan. The deal provides for modernized target acquisition designation sight/pilot night vision sensors and its subcomponents on the Apache 64D/E helicopter. The M-TADS/PNVS is a long-range, precision engagement and pilotage solution for day, night and adverse weather missions. The electro-optical sensor provides Apache aircrews with situational awareness. Work locations and funding will be determined with each order, with an estimated completion date of April 24, 2023.
China has recently commissioned a “new strategic nuclear-powered submarine”, according to a report by the state-owned Global Times newspaper. Written to reflect recent achievements of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) in celebration of the 71st anniversary of the establishment of the naval service, the report refers to “new weapons” entering service including the Type 055 destroyer, the first domestically built aircraft carrier, and new anti-submarine patrol aircraft (the KQ-200), as well as the new submarine. Written to reflect recent achievements of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) in celebration of the 71st anniversary of the establishment of the naval service, the report refers to “new weapons” entering service including the Type 055 destroyer, the first domestically built aircraft carrier, and new anti-submarine patrol aircraft (the KQ-200), as well as the new submarine.
Watch: DEFENSE UPDATES WEEKLY NEWS ROUND-UP 26th APRIL-TRUMP TELLS NAVY TO DESTROY IRAN’s GUNBOATS & MORE!
Aviation Training Consulting won a $7.3 million contract modification for B-52 training system contractor logistics support and training system support center sustainment. The contract modification is for the third increment of the seven year basic contract. The B-52 Stratofortress is capable of dropping or launching a significant array of weapons including gravity bombs, cluster bombs and precision guided missiles. It is a long-range, subsonic, jet-powered strategic bomber. It has been operated by the US Air Force since the 50s. Work under the contract modification will take place at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana; and Minot AFB, North Dakota. Estimated completion date is October 31, 2020.
Lockheed Martin Rotary and Mission Systems won a $147.6 million contract action modification for the procurement of MK 41 Vertical Launching System (VLS) vertical launcher module electronic components. The electronic components are installed on USN Ticonderoga Class guided missile cruisers and Arleigh Burke Class guided missile destroyers, as well as vessels operated by allied navies. The purchases are for the USN as well as including purchases via FMS for Finland, Germany and South Korea. The contracting activity is the Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington, DC. This agreement will be financed using the FY2018 and FY2019 shipbuilding and conversion (Navy) funds as well as $29.53 million of FMS funding which was obligated at the time of award. Work is expected to be completed by March 2025.
Middle East & Africa
The US State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sales Order (FMSO) II to provide funds for blanket order requisitions to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on April 23. The Government of the United Arab Emirates had earlier requested a Foreign Military Sales Order (FMSO) II to provide funds for blanket order requisitions under a Cooperative Logistics Supply Support Agreement for common spares/repair parts to support the UAE’ fleet of AH-64 Apache, UH-60 Black Hawk, and CH-47 Chinook helicopters, additional support; and other related elements of logistics and program support. The estimated cost is $150 million. The proposed sale will allow the UAE Joint Aviation Command to continue to purchase needed spare/repair parts to maintain its fleet of AH-64 Apache attack helicopters, UH-60 Black Hawk utility helicopters, and CH-47 Chinook heavy-lift helicopters as part of the Cooperative Logistics Supply Support Agreement program.
A Israeli Air Force F-4 #022 that was neglected in the Air Force Museum has been restored to pristine condition by 201 Squadron and shipped back home to Ramon Air Force Base. 201 Squadron was the first and last operator of the Phantom in the Israeli Air Force. The F-4 Phantom aircraft and the 201 (“The One”) squadron, which currently operates the “Sufa” (F-16I) fighter jet, share a historic route. The squadron was the first and last to operate the aircraft that has since participated in countless IAF wars and operations. Recently, Ramon AFB received a newly renovated Phantom from the IAF museum located in Hatzerim AFB.
Saab has signed a three-year contract with the British Ministry of Defense for the provision of support and services to the Direct Fire Weapon Effects Simulator (DFWES) capability. The contract came into effect on April 1, 2020. DFWES is a laser-based Tactical Engagement Simulation (TES) system, that allows dismounted and mounted soldiers to simulate the effects of direct and indirect fire. This order includes support and maintenance for the British Army’s DFWES capability.
South Korea will incorporate a Hanwha Systems-developed, medium-range multifunction radar (MFR) system on the new type of frigates referred to locally as the FFX-III class, Jane’s reports. The class, which is also known as the Ulsan Batch III in official Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) documents, will be the first warships to feature the Gallium Nitride-based sensor. The active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar will form the apex of the frigate’s integrated mast system. The Incheon Class frigates also known as the Future Frigate eXperimental or FFX during development, are coastal defense frigates of the Republic of Korea Navy.
Watch: RAYTHEON TO BUILD 1000 NEXT GENERATION NUCLEAR ARMED AIR LAUNCHED CRUISE MISSILE FOR U.S AIR FORCE !
Clark Construction Group won a $78.2 million contract modification, which provides for the construction of the VC-25B hangar complex at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The VC-25B, the next Air Force One, is a program to design, test and deliver two aircraft replacing the current VC-25A. The V-25B is to be retrofitted so that the president of the USA can run the federal government, including commanding and controlling the US military, while in flight. As such, detailed information about the aircraft’s components and capabilities are classified or tightly controlled. The aircraft also is likely to include missile warning systems and defensive technologies, such as chaff dispensing systems and directional infrared countermeasures. Work will be performed in Camp Springs, Maryland, and provides for the construction of a hangar complex, an aircraft access taxiway/parking apron, associated lighting, engine run-up pads and a hydrant refueling system with storage tanks. Additional requirements include, but are not limited to, site preparation, wetland/stream mitigation, storm water management, a parking lot, and a fire detection and suppression system. Expected completion will be by April 2022.
Raytheon won a $10.1 million delivery order for the repair of the ALE-50 towed decoy system used in support of the F/A-18 Super Hornet warfare air craft. The AN/ALE-50 towed decoy system was developed by Raytheon to protect multiple US military aircraft from radar-guided-missiles. The ALE-50 consists of a launch controller, launcher and towed decoy. It can be used on a variety of platforms without modification. When deployed, the ALE-50’s expendable aerial decoy is towed behind the aircraft. The decoy protects the host aircraft providing a more attractive target and steering the radar-guided missile away from the aircraft and right to the decoy. ALE-50 has countered both surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles. Work will take place in Forest, Mississippi. Expected completion will be by October 2022.
Middle East & Africa
Iran has apparently lofted its first military satellite into orbit, ending a series of setbacks for the nation’s space program. The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) announced that the Noor-1, the country’s first military satellite, was launched from a location in the Dasht-e Kavir desert and successfully put into a 425 km orbit. The United States did not immediately confirm the launch’s success, but General John Hyten, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, left little doubt that Iran had put a satellite into orbit. “The first satellite of the Islamic Republic of Iran has been successfully launched into orbit by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps [IRGC],” said the elite forces’ official website on Wednesday. It said the satellite – dubbed the Nour – was deployed from the Qassed two-stage launcher from the Markazi desert, a vast expanse in Iran’s central plateau.
Lockheed Martin won a $519.1 million contract for the procurement of international Aegis fire control loop development, Solid State S-Band Radar Processing Group, tools and test equipment and spares for five new multi-mission frigates supporting the Aegis combat system (Baseline 9C.2). The deal funds procurement of international Aegis fire control loop development, Solid State S-Band Radar Processing Group as well as tools, test equipment and spares for five new multi-mission frigates supporting the Aegis combat system. The Aegis Weapon System is a centralized, automated, command-and-control and weapons control system used by the US Navy, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, Spanish Navy, Royal Norwegian Navy, Republic of Korea Navy and Royal Australian Navy on a variety of vessel types. Work will take place in New jersey, Wisconsin, Spain, Massachusetts, Washington DC and California. Work is expected by April 2030.
The Dutch Defense Materiel Organization ordered 127 mm guns for the four Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN) De Zeven Provinciën Class air defense and command frigates (LCFs). Leonardo has contracted Thales Nederland to install the former’s 127/64 LW-Vulcano system by 2026. The MoD said that the medium gun system would be used mainly for surface fire and naval gunfire support, as well as for air defense. Leonardo’s website lists the system’s four subsystems as the 127/64 LW Gun assembly, a modular automated ammunition handling system, the Naval Fire Control Support mission planning system, and the Vulcano ammunition family. The 127/64 LW-Vulcano has a modular feeding system composed of four drums with 14 ready-to-fire rounds each that can be reloaded during firing, and that can be selected independently from their position in the drums. The gun can fire standard 127 mm rounds and precision-guided munitions, the latter with a range of up to 100 km, according to the MoD.
The Wall Street Journal reported on April 20 that a Chinese airborne early warning aircraft has been operating out of Fiery Cross Reef in the South China Sea. The paper quoted anonymous US officials as saying that the reef is being used as a “forward operating base’ for various military aircraft.
Latest updates[?]: Clark Construction Group won a $78.2 million contract modification, which provides for the construction of the VC-25B hangar complex at Joint Base Andrews, Maryland. The VC-25B, the next Air Force One, is a program to design, test and deliver two aircraft replacing the current VC-25A. The V-25B is to be retrofitted so that the president of the USA can run the federal government, including commanding and controlling the US military, while in flight. As such, detailed information about the aircraft’s components and capabilities are classified or tightly controlled. The aircraft also is likely to include missile warning systems and defensive technologies, such as chaff dispensing systems and directional infrared countermeasures. Work will be performed in Camp Springs, Maryland, and provides for the construction of a hangar complex, an aircraft access taxiway/parking apron, associated lighting, engine run-up pads and a hydrant refueling system with storage tanks. Additional requirements include, but are not limited to, site preparation, wetland/stream mitigation, storm water management, a parking lot, and a fire detection and suppression system. Expected completion will be by April 2022.
Air Force One
The USA’s fleet of 2 “VC-25” 747-200 derivatives is unique in several respects. It’s more popularly known as the latest incarnation of the “Air Force One” fleet that transports the President of the United States around the world, though the planes themselves only acquire the “Air Force One” call sign when the President is on board. The VC-25 can also serve as a secondary command post, thanks to a suite of advanced communications and electronics gear that’s both highly encrypted, and protected from the Electro-Magnetic Pulse effects of nuclear detonations. The 89th Airlift Wing operates them from Andrews AFB, MD.
During the Cold War, if humanity’s time on earth had been cut short, at least one of the orders would almost certainly have come from a 707-based “VC-137” predecessor. The 747-based VC-25s were ordered in 1985, and added to the fleet in 1990, where they continue to serve in the same roles, flying an average of nearly 200,000 miles per year. Of course, maintenance and upgrades are still required, such as the 2002/2003 upgrades that let the President address the nation from on board, new defensive systems, etc…
Latest updates[?]: Raytheon won a $10.1 million delivery order for the repair of the ALE-50 towed decoy system used in support of the F/A-18 Super Hornet warfare air craft. The AN/ALE-50 towed decoy system was developed by Raytheon to protect multiple US military aircraft from radar-guided-missiles. The ALE-50 consists of a launch controller, launcher and towed decoy. It can be used on a variety of platforms without modification. When deployed, the ALE-50's expendable aerial decoy is towed behind the aircraft. The decoy protects the host aircraft providing a more attractive target and steering the radar-guided missile away from the aircraft and right to the decoy. ALE-50 has countered both surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles. Work will take place in Forest, Mississippi. Expected completion will be by October 2022.
ALE-50 “Little Buddy”
The entire ALE-50 system consists of a launcher and launch controller attached to one of the aircraft’s weapon pylons, containing one or more expendable towed decoys. These trail behind the aircraft when deployed, attracting radar-guided missiles to themselves instead. Each decoy and payout reel is delivered in a sealed canister, and has a 10-year shelf life.
In both flight tests and actual combat, the ALE-50 has successfully countered numerous live firings of both surface-to-air and air-to-air missiles. Deagel.com estimates the ALE-50 expendable decoys’ estimated value at $22,000 each – which is certainly a lot cheaper than a B-1 bomber. At least one US pilot who came home safe referred to the ALE-50 as “my little buddy” in a letter to Raytheon…
The 354th Fighter Wing has taken delivery of its first two F-35A fighters at Eielson Air Force Base in Alaska on April 21. The jets flew non-stop from Forth Worth, Texas with mid-air refueling from two KC-135s from the 168th Wing. “This first aircraft is a milestone,” said Col. Benjamin Bishop, the 354th Fighter Wing commander. “Making the first aircraft arrival possible has been a long path, but it’s also just the first step in a journey that will continue at Eielson Air Force Base for decades to come.” By the end of 2021, 54 F-35s will make up two squadrons at Eielson, which is near Fairbanks.
The Pentagon announced that it is awarding $133 million to increase domestic production of N95 masks by over 39 million over the next 90 days. Under the contract, 3M will receive $76 million, O&M Halyward will receive $29 million and Honeywell will receive $27.4 million to make the masks, which have been in short supply since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. According to the Department of Defense, the investment is intended to ensure the United States government “gets dedicated long term industrial capacity to meet the needs of the nation.” 3M is contracted to provide 78 million units within six months, with an additional 13 million units per month by June, where O&M Halyward will add 25 million units within 6 months and an additional 12.5 million masks every month after. Under the contract Honeywell will add 38 million units within six months and 12 million units per month after.
Middle East & Africa
II Corps Consultants won a $68.7 deal for the Center for Advanced Operational Culture Learning program. The Center for Advanced Operational Culture Learning ensures Marines deploy with an operational understanding of the local military and partner cultures and regional dynamics relevant to the mission, with select Marines being language-enabled, in order to facilitate mission success. CAOCL’s designs, delivers, and manages programming throughout the education and training continuum, conducts research and assessments, and provides scientific, policy, and subject matter advising. It also serves as one of the three proponents for Language, Regional Expertise, and Culture (LREC)-related doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership, personnel, and facilities (DOTMLPF) issues throughout the Marine Corps as directed by the LREC Operational Advisory Group (OAG) Charter and the Marine Corps LREC Strategy. Work will take place in Virginia, Bahrain and Afghanistan. Expected completion date will be by April 2025.
Three Orion Unmanned Aerial Vehicles have been accepted by the Russian Ministry of Defense, JSC Kronshtadt Group said. General Designer of Kronshtadt, Nikolay Dolzhenkov, added that the aircraft will be modified for additional requirements that were not specified in the original contract. Orion is a Russian unmanned combat aerial vehicle developed by Kronshtadt Group. It can carry four bombs and four missiles and has maximum payload of 200 kg.
As health services across the world battle Coronavirus, NHS Wales is stepping up its defense against viruses of the technological kind. A new agreement with Thales will enable the NHS Wales Informatics Services (NWIS) team to protect vital systems from a surge in cyber-attacks by accessing Thales’s technical threat analysis service, a global centre of knowledge about the latest and emerging threats. According to Thales, the company will be providing the service to NHS Wales free of charge. Thales’s intelligence service makes available its intelligence, identification, computer virus spread monitoring, threat analysis and rapid response skills to healthcare systems across the world, now including NHS Wales.
Guizhou Aviation Industry Corporation is expecting to fly a new variant of its JL-9 advanced jet trainer that is capable of operating from China’s aircraft carriers soon. The company announced recently that assembly is finished and the jet is being prepared for its maiden flight. It has been suggested that the new variant has removed the drag chute. While the Guizhou company did not elaborate on the project, it said in a separate statement in March that the goal was to “win a new victory in developing and producing the Naval Mountain Eagle,” and the statement came with a picture showing an aircraft carrier at sea, with a Naval Mountain Eagle flying above the carrier and J-15 fighter jets parked on the carrier’s flight deck.
Timken Gears and Services won a $76.2 million contract modification to exercise options for main reduction gear shipsets for DDG-51 or Arleigh Burke Class guided-missile destroyers. The DDG 51 Arleigh Burke Class is a multi-mission warship. It features an advanced anti-submarine warfare system, the AEGIS combat system, the Vertical Launching System, two embarked SH-60 helicopters along with advanced anti-aircraft missiles and land-attack missiles. The main reduction gears transmit the power from two main propulsion gas turbines to the propulsion shaft. Each DDG 51 Class destroyer has two gear assemblies, one for each propulsion shaft. The DDG 51-Class guided-missile destroyer is a multi-mission surface combatant with 67 delivered ships, and 21 more are currently under contract. Work will take place in Missouri, California, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Delaware and Wisconsin. Work is expected to be finished by November 2023.
The US Air Force has decided to focus on Raytheon’s design for the Long-Range Standoff Weapon program. Elizabeth Thorn, LRSO’s program manager said the decision is not a down-select. Lockheed Martin and Raytheon were given Technology Maturation and Risk contracts for the program in 2017. “We are reframing our relationship with Lockheed Martin to focus on specific technology maturation we believe either has future applicability for the final LRSO design or will reduce overall program risk,” Thorn said. The LRSO is designed to be a nuclear-armed cruise missile to replace the AGM-86.
Middle East & Africa
Iraq became the latest country to consider acquiring the Russian-made S-400 Triumf, local news reports. The country’s Parliamentary Security and Defense committee had submitted a report to the Iraqi prime minister’s office recommending the acquisition of the S-400. The country had previously announced in January that it would be examining potential offerings from China, Russia, and Ukraine. The acquisition will have to await approval of the country’s prime minister, with the post currently vacant. Former director of the country’s National Intelligence Service Mustafa al-Khadimi is currently the prime minister designate and is negotiating with other parties to form a coalition government.
Iran now has armed versions of its Ababil-3 UAV. This was revealed during a ceremony held to mark the delivery of three types of unmanned aircraft to the military. The Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics released photographs showing a hangar at the Aerospace Industries Organization facility in Isfahan with 11 Ababil-3s, one of which was carrying a television-guided munition on a hardpoint under a wing. This appeared to be a member of the Ghaem family of small-guided bombs that has previously been seen on Mohajer-6 UAVs. Iranian television showed an Ababil-3 with a different livery apparently carrying out a precision air strike against an old tank using a munition labelled as a Ghaem. The MODAFL cited Defense Minister Amir Hatami as saying the Ababil-3 has a range of 150 km.
The German government has approved the procurement of the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler to partially satisfy its Tornado replacement requirement, national media has reported. German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer has told the US government that Berlin has given clearance for the Luftwaffe to acquire 45 Super Hornet and Growler aircraft as part of its wider plans to replace 90 Panavia Tornado Interdiction and Strike (IDS)/Electronic Combat Reconnaissance (ECR) aircraft with 85 new platforms from 2025. The 30 Super Hornet multirole and 15 Growler electronic attack (EA) jets would enable the Luftwaffe to fulfil its airborne nuclear strike and EA requirements within the required timeframe,
The Turkish defense company Aselsan announced that it had signed a new contract with Kazakhstan to supply its Stabilized Advanced Remote Weapon Platform (SARP)-Dual remote-controlled weapon station (RCWS). The Turkish company has strong links with Kazakhstan via its Kazakhstan Aselsan Engineering subsidiary, which was established to increase ‘manufacturing capacity in order to meet Kazakhstan’s military and civilian needs’. No details were provided about the delivery schedule, the size of the order, the value of the contract or the platforms the RWCSs are set to be installed upon. In November 2016 Kazakhstan had awarded the company a contract for an undisclosed number of SARP RWCSs, deliveries of which began the following year. However, these are believed to have been single weapon systems.
Watch: NEW SORYU SUBMARINES ARE THE FIRST TO HAVE LITHIUM-ION BATTERIES MAKING THEM DEADLY SILENT !
Huntington Ingalls Industries won a $108 million contract modification to exercise options for the accomplishment of the planning yard services for the littoral combat in-service ships. The LCS is a high speed, agile, shallow draft, mission-focused surface combatant of the US Navy designed for operations in the littoral environment, yet fully capable of open ocean operations. It is a modular, reconfigurable ship designed to meet validated fleet requirements for anti-surface warfare (ASuW), anti-submarine warfare (ASW) and mine countermeasures (MCM) missions. The requirements under this contract include, but are not limited to ship installation drawings development; ship change document updates; operating cycle integration program management; work integration package engineering; type commander response; ship configuration logistics support information system support; configuration data management; research engineering and modeling; provisioned items order; cost and feasibility studies; integrated planning yard material support; provisioning technical documentation; naval ships engineering drawing repository system input and data management; interface and coordination with regional maintenance centers and fleet entities; design alteration and modification development; review and tracing; managing related class ship selected record documents; and hull, mechanical and electrical engineering standardization efforts.Work will take place in Virginia, Mississippi,California and Florida. Estimated completion will be by April 2021.
General Dynamics Electric Boat announced that it has delivered the nuclear-powered attack submarine Vermont to the Navy. The Vermont is the 19th submarine of the Virginia Class, which displace 7,835 tons, with a hull length of 377 feet and a diameter of 34 feet, and can carry eight masts, including a snorkel mast and high-data-rate satellite communication masts as well as a radar mast. The submarine is valued at $3 billion. “I am pleased to report that the Vermont has received some of the highest quality ratings in the history of the Virginia program. We wish Vermont and her crew a long and distinguished career in defense of our nation“, said Kevin Graney, President, General Dynamics Electric Boat, in a press release. Back in December the Navy awarded Electric Boat $22.2 billion for delivery of nine Virginia-class subs, and in January Lockheed Martin received $19.3 million to deliver masts for the boats.
Middle East & Africa
The first of 12 Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC)-Embraer A-29 Super Tucano light attack turboprops for Nigeria made its maiden flight at the Florida production facility on April 17. With the successful first flight completed, the aircraft will now be fitted with its mission systems by SNC in Colorado ahead of final trials and the commencement of deliveries to the Nigerian Air Force in 2021. The milestone comes about 30 months after the US Department of Defense (DoD) contracted SNC to deliver the 12 aircraft to Nigeria for use in the fight against the Boko Haram Islamist group. With weapons, the total value of the deal was estimated to be approximately $600 million. Powered by a single 1,600 SHP Pratt & Whitney PT6A-68/3 turboprop engine, the Super Tucano carries two 12.7 mm machine guns (200 rounds each) in the wings and can be configured with additional underwing weaponry such as 20 mm cannon pods, additional 12.7 mm machine guns, rockets pods, precision-guided munitions, and/or ‘dumb’ bombs of up to 1,500 kg.
The Italian Army has placed an order with Leonardo for 15 AW169 helicopters. This is the second successful sale of the military variant. Italy’s Guardia di Finanza police agency was the first to order this variant back in 2018 with an order for 22. The procurement, disclosed by the country’s Ministry of Defense solidifies an earlier announcement made in January that the AW169M was to be bought to replace the army’s Bell AB 205, AB 212, and AB 412 LUHs, and to augment its Boeing CH-47F Chinook, NHIndustries NH90, AgustaWestland A129 helicopters. According to the procurement document, the deal with Leonardo, which is valued at $301 million, comprises delivery of two helicopters in a ‘commercial basic trainer’ configuration, as well as approval for the start of development of 15 new ‘advanced multirole’ configuration helicopters for the Italian Army.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Indian Navy emphasized that it remains combat-ready, mission-capable, and in full readiness, after 26 of its personnel were quarantined after testing positive for the coronavirus. “All missions for coastal and offshore security continue as before. Operational units are being maintained in readiness by following a 14-day quarantine routine to meet immediate contingencies, including assistance to civil authorities and friendly maritime neighbors“, said India’s Press Information Bureau. “Our naval assets continue to be mission-deployed in three dimensions, with all the networks and space assets functioning optimally,” it added.
Sankei News reports that Japan has created a working group of local and US aerospace companies for the development of the successor to the F-2 fighter. The report added that Britain lost the race for the joint development program as it wants to have the lead and Japan is unwilling to participate in joint development with other countries in the Tempest program. The F-2 is one of the main fighter jets used by the Air Self-Defense Force. According to government officials, about 10 Japanese companies, including Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd., IHI Corp. and Toshiba Corp., will join the conference. Japan will ask three US companies, including Lockheed Martin Corp. and Boeing Co., to join the conference.
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