Brazil Presses KC-390 Into Operational Service Due To COVID-19 | TB2 UAVs Entered Service With Qatar | India’s Rafale Delivery Likely To Be In JulyApr 14, 2020 05:00 UTC
Northrop Grumman won a $12.7 million delivery order for selector antenna in support of the P-8 aircraft program. The P-8A is a militarized version of the Boeing 737 commercial aircraft. The P-8A has an active multi-static and passive acoustic sensor system, inverse synthetic aperture radar, new electronic support measures system, new electro-optical/infrared sensor and a digital magnetic anomaly detector. Its nine-person crew includes a dual-pilot cockpit and five mission crew. The P-8A has workstations with universal multi-function displays, and ready accommodation for additional workstations and workload sharing. Work will take place in Maryland. Estimated completion date is February 13, 2025.
The Brazilian Air Force was forced to take two of its KC-390 transports away from instructional flights in order to airlift medical supplies to areas affected by COVID-19. The Brazilian Air Force received its first Embraer KC-390 transport on September 4. The twin-turbofan-powered KC-390 can be refueled in flight and can be used for in-flight or on-ground refueling of other aircraft. The military aircraft has a cargo bay equipped with an aft ramp similar to Hercules, and is capable of transporting a wide variety of cargo, including armored vehicles.
Middle East & Africa
Bayraktar TB2 UAVS participated in a Qatari military exercise for the first time. The Qatari Ministry of Defense released footage showing Exercise ‘Al-Adheed 2020’ that included brief clips of a Bayraktar TB2 taxiing and taking off. The UAV was not carrying weapons, but the video implied that it carried out precision strikes during live firing at the Qurayn Abu al-Bawl training area in the south of the country. Qatar’s order for six Bayraktar TB2s, three ground control stations, and a training simulator was announced during the DIMDEX show held in Doha in March 2018.
A Ukrainian MiG-29 had an accident while landing at Melitopol air base on April 10. State Bureau of Investigation said the pilot had violated flight rules during the landing and will be investigated under Article 416 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. The pretrial investigation is under way to probe into the violation of the flight rules, which entails grave consequences. The punishment is imprisonment for a period of five to 15 years. The aircraft made an emergency belly-landing on the runway, one of its wing was damaged. The pilot survived.
RAMSYS GmbH won a €12.1 million and $66.2 million contract modification to exercise options for the Block 1A Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) Guided Missile Round Packs (GRMPs) recertification. The RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile is a small, lightweight, infrared homing surface-to-air missile. The RIM-116 RAM is designed as a high-firepower, low-cost, self-defense system against anti-ship cruise missiles and other asymmetric threats. For all versions of the missile, there is no shipboard support required after missile launch. The original Block 0 design was based upon the infra-red seeker of the Stinger missile, and the warhead, rocket motor and fuse from the Sidewinder missile. The Block 0 configuration uses Radio Frequency for midcourse guidance and transitions to Infrared guidance for terminal engagement. The Block 1A incorporates the added capability of autonomous IR-all-the-way guidance, thus countering advanced anti-ship cruise missiles that do not employ onboard radar seekers. Work will take place in Ottobrunn, Germany and Tucson, Arizona. Expected completion will be by September 2021.
India will likely have to wait till July to get its Rafale jets on home soil, according to The Hindu. The delivery flight home has been delayed due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. Test and support equipment are still stuck in India. Travel restrictions imposed by India on anyone coming from Europe is complicating the situation. Additionally, the lockdown restrictions are expected to continue in France at least till the end of April due to severity of the outbreak. “So, it is only obvious that we expect corresponding delay,” the newspaper cited two sources. India has contracted 36 Rafale multi-role fighter jets from France in fly-away condition with 13 India Specific Enhancements under an $8.5 billion Inter-Governmental Agreement signed in September 2016. As per the IGA, deliveries begin 36 months from signing of contract and will be completed in 67 months.
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