Embraer KC-390 Dry Refueling First in Rio | SAIC Previews ACV 1.1 to USMC; Deliveries Begin in March | Germany’s Stemme AG & SA’s S-Plane Plan for OPV
- Embraer has announced that their KC-390 tanker transport aircraft has completed its first dry refueling contact. The milestone test was conducted by a Brazilian Air Force F-5 Tiger which successfully plugged into both refueling hoses on one of the KC-390 prototypes during a sortie near Santa Cruz airbase, Rio de Janeiro, on Feb. 19. Embraer is currently assembling the first product model of the aircraft and believes the aircraft could be a good fit for air arms in the Middle East because of its multi-role capability. The company plans to bring the aircraft back to the Middle East next summer after it has been displayed at the Paris Airshow.
- Orbital ATK has received international orders worth $600 million in the past three months for their medium-caliber cannons and related munitions, the company has revealed. The orders from multiple customers were primarily for MK44 and M230 link-fed Bushmaster Chain Guns. Speaking on the orders, Dan Olson, vice president and general manager for the company’s Armament Systems Division lauded the cannon’s easy integration for land, air, and sea applications and added that the strong sales “reflects our core mission to work together with our integrator partners as well as our allies to create and deliver superior armaments and services for those who defend their nation’s security.”
- The Amphibious Combat Vehicle 1.1 by Science Applications International Corporation and BAE Systems for the USMC has been unveiled for the first time. Developed to replace an aging fleet of amphibious assault vehicles, the Marines will receive a total of 16 vehicles with deliveries to commence in March. The earlier stages of the ACV 1.1 production effort were stalled by a contract protest by General Dynamics after the company was defeated in the Marine Corps’ bidding process.
Middle East & North Africa
- The UAE is looking to have its Pantsyr-S mobile air defense system upgraded. Speaking at IDEX 2017, Russia’s Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturo said talks will be held “on modernizing this type of combat hardware and I hope that colleagues will increase the volume of orders for new modifications. So far, we’re talking about modernization with an option of deliveries.” Officials from Russia and the UAE signed contracts back in 2000 for the delivery of 50 Pantsyr-S1 systems.
- Its been reported that investors are betting heavily on Israeli defense and cyber-security firms benefitting from US defense spending plans under President Donald Trump. Companies such as Elbit Systems, Magal Security Systems and Check Point Software Technologies have all seen their share prices soar since Trump’s election in November 2016, and could benefit further from having their American subsidiaries incorporated in the US. One contentious project- the border wall along the Mexican border- could see firms like Magal, whose sensors and command and control systems help to secure airports, borders, power plants, seaports and prisons, provide its technology for the wall.
- Germany’s Stemme AG has reached an agreement with South Africa’s S-Plane Automation to integrate S-Plane subsystems into the Ecarys ES15 aircraft to create an Optionally Piloted Vehicle (OPV). Ecarys, a Stemme subsidiary that specialises in providing platforms for aerial surveillance, reconnaissance and scientific research missions, will be powered by S-Plane avionics and ground control station, and will combine the benefits of a manned aircraft with those of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), allowing for a greater variety of mission requirements.
- Poland’s Defense Ministry has begun negotiations with three bidders for various helicopter mission requirements. Eight are being sought to fill an urgent need for special forces missions, while eight more are required to fill a 2019 naval requirement for anti-submarine warfare and maritime search and rescue operations. The urgent nature of the acquisitions will allow Warsaw to bypass certain lengthy procurement procedures and they are believed to be talking to Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo Helicopters and Sikorsky. Despite the apparent urgency, however, the government is still insisting on offset requirements, which must be an “integral part of the contract.”
- Often reserved exclusively for border surveillance and protection, conceptual documentary photographer Richard Mosse has used advanced new thermographic weapons and border imaging technology in order to document the ongoing refugee crisis unfolding in the Aegean Sea, off the coast of Libya, in Syria, the Sahara, the Persian Gulf, and other locations. Capable of capturing images beyond 30km, registering a heat signature of relative temperature difference, the camera identified only temperature resulting in bodies being whiter where they’re hotter. The installation is now on show in London’s Barbican Centre until April 23.
- Pakistan has contracted Leonardo to provide an undisclosed number of additional AgustaWestland AW139 helicopters. Deliveries of the utility and transport helicopters will begin in the middle of this year. Leonardo said that the purchase will expand Pakistan’s existing AW139 fleet, adding the rotorcraft’s high performance capabilities under extreme weather conditions make it a good fit for the country’s operational environment.
- The ACV 1.1:
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