Documents show Issues with F-35 | UVision to unveil Hero-400EC in Paris | Rheinmetall to deliver Unprotected Transport Vehicles to Bundeswehr
Lockheed Martin launched the latest version of an advanced visualization and training tool for Apache AH-64 sensor system maintainers, called Rely3D. According to Lockheed Martin RELY3D is an interactive suite of applications that supports Apache aircraft maintainers with M-TADS/PNVS virtual guides, 3-D animations, wiring diagrams and more. The advanced tool is aimed at reducing maintenance time on the Apache M-TADS/PNVS system. M-TADS/PNVS provides Apache helicopter pilots with long-range, precision engagement and pilotage capabilities for mission success and flight safety during any time of the day and in any weather. Lockheed Martin developed RELY3D based on an employee idea to improve maintenance efficiency through interactive training content. The tool helps reduce training time for Apache aircraft maintainers by up to 60%, the company noted.
According to Defense News, the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter continues to face a number of serious deficiencies that could negatively impact pilots and missions. Valerie Insinna writes that documents show, the F-35 struggles with things like cabin pressure spikes that cause ear and sinus pains and loss of aircraft control with certain maneuvers. She also mentions issues with the helmet-mounted display and night vision camera that contribute to the difficulty of landing the F-35C on an aircraft carrier. The documents describe some of these problems as category 1 deficiencies, which is a designation only given to major flaws that impact safety or mission effectiveness. Most of the issues described have not been publicly communicated. However, Defense Department leaders want to decide by the end of the year if they should move forward with full-rate production.
Middle East & Africa
According to a press release, UVision plans to present its Hero-400EC’s Multi-Canister Launcher at the upcoming Paris Air Show. The Israeli company describes the Hero-400EC as a long-range, high-precision Loitering munition system with a low acoustic, visual and thermal signature that can locate, track and strike static as well as moving targets with high accuracy, stealth, and minimal collateral damage. The Hero-400EC loitering munition is 2.1 meters long and has a wing span of 2.4 meters as well as a maximum take-off weight of 40kg. UVision designed the weapon system to engage a range of stationary or moving targets, including armored vehicles, main battle tanks (MBTs), entrenched and fortified positions, and targets in confined urban environments. It is also suitable for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) applications. The company unveiled the system in 2017. The new launcher is suitable for a wide range of land and naval applications. UVision will also reveal an advanced configuration of the Hero-120 with multi-purpose warheads.
Rafael together with IAI’s Elta Systems will upgrade the Litening 5 and Reccelite XR all-weather stand-off airborne electro-optic targeting pods with a synthetic aperture radar imagery intelligence payload, Jane’s reports. The Litening 5 is a high-resolution multi-sensor targeting pod, incorporating an upgraded 1.2K x 1.2K large aperture forward-looking mid-wave infrared and a short-wave infrared. In addition to more diverse targeting, the pods are said to feature inter-asset communications and sensor sharing capabilities. The fifth generation of the targeting pod is now capable of targeting from long range, enabling strike aircraft to employ guided weapons from standoff range without relying on external support. Litening 5 employs a new sensor package, utilizing an optical assembly and larger aperture tailored specifically for the new sensors, enabling the increased identification and recognition distance. Reccelite XR is a multi-spectral, multi-role, real-time standoff reconnaissance system that consists of an airborne pod, a wide digital datalink and a ground exploitation station. Similar to the Litening 5, Reccelite XR received an enhanced sensor package comprising megapixel-size arrays of near-infrared, mid-wave infrared, color sensors and short-wave infrared.
Rheinmetall won a $104 million order to deliver 252 unprotected transport vehicles with payloads of five and fifteen tonnes to the German „Bundeswehr“. In 2017, the German company signed an agreement to build 2,271 state-of-the-art military trucks. The agreement includes special tools and training services and is worth about $1 billion. Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH will build and deliver the just ordered vehicles until the end of the year.
India launched an indigenously-developed Hypersonic Technology Demonstrator Vehicle (HSTDV) in its maiden test from a base off the Odisha coast on June 12. Initial reports say that the test was successful. According to India Today however, the Defense Research and Development Organization could not achieve the wanted results. The HSTDV is an unmanned scramjet demonstration vehicle that can cruise up to a speed of mach 6 and rise up to an altitude of 32. kilometers in 20 seconds. A successful test of a hypersonic technology transporter vehicle could boost the development of a hypersonic cruise missile, the Brahmos II, which is currently under development with Scramjet technology.
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