F-35As To Be Equipped With AARGM-ER | Greece And UAE Agreed To A Strategic Partnership | US Donates TOW Missiles To Philippines
Northrop Grumman won a $185.7 million deal for the A-10 Structural Integrity Program Legacy VIII. The deal provides for sustaining engineering services of A-10 aircraft. Services under the indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract are intended to support the military branch’s A-10 Aircraft Structural Integrity Program Legacy VII effort. Built by Fairchild Republic Company prior to its acquisition by Northrop, the A-10 aircraft is designed to help USAF perform airborne forward air control and close air support operations. Work will take place in Clearfield, Utah and estimated completion date is November 22, 2030.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics won a $9.3 million contract for the Long Range Systems Division seeking to integrate the Navy Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile-Extended Range (AARGM-ER) into the F-35. The AARGM-ER is a Navy weapon that will provide the F-35A advanced suppression of enemy air defenses/destruction of enemy air defenses capability. The AARGM-ER (Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile-Extended Range) is a further development of the AGM-88 HARM anti-radiation missile, used to destroy enemy air defense network. An anti-radiation missile homes in on the electronic transmissions coming from a hostile surface-to-air radar and destroys it. The AARGM-ER was originally developed for the navy carrier-based fighters, equipping its F-35C fighter fleet with a credible long-range weapon, which would further boost their lethality in carrying out SEAD/DEAD (suppression/destruction of enemy air defenses) sorties. With Lockheed Martin bagging the contract, the weapon system would also find its way into the US Air Force’s F-35A CTOL (conventional take-off and landing) fleet. Lockheed Martin is the parent manufacturing company of the F-35 aircraft as well.
Middle East & Africa
Greece and the United Arab Emirates, countries opposing recent Turkish policy, agreed to a strategic partnership on November 23rd. “I am happy to announce the establishment of a strategic partnership to enhance political, economic and cultural cooperation between our countries,” Prince Muhammad bin Zayed announced on Twitter. The clause regarding mutual defense calling for aid if one country’s territorial integrity is threatened, is likely the most significant element of the pact. Although Greece and the UAE do not share a border or belong to a common alliance, each country regards Turkey as a threat. Greece disputed Turkey’s search for minerals and energy in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, claimed by Greece and Cyprus, during the summer.
Armasuisse, which is the Swiss Federal Office for Defense Procurement, announced that it has received the second set of proposals for the country’s Air2030 Neues Kampfflugzeug (New Fighter Aircraft, NKF) as well as ground-based air defense system. The offers to replace the Swiss Air Force’s F-5E/F Tiger II and F/A-18 Hornet fleets were made by Germany for Airbus Eurofighter, France for the Dassault Rafale, and the United States for the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning Joint Strike Fighter. The DDPS said the proposals included the prices for 36 and 40 aircraft, including logistics and weapons, as a binding starting point for negotiations with the winning offer after type selection.
The US government donated 100 TOW-2A guided anti-tank missiles to the Philippines on November 23. US National Security Advisor (NSA) Robert C. O’Brien participated in the ceremonial handover of the weapons. The missiles will support the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ efforts to defeat ISIS-East Asia in the Southern Philippines. Following the recent typhoons that ravaged the Philippines and forced thousands of people from their homes, NSA O’Brien announced an additional $3.5 million in US humanitarian assistance to disaster-stricken communities.
Korea Aerospace Industries’ dedicated services company, Korea Aviation Engineering & Maintenance Service launched its new facility in Sacheon, in the south of the country, aiming to position the region as a hub for aerospace maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) services. KAEMS, which specializes in both military and commercial aerospace MRO, said the facility will initially be positioned to win regional commercial aerospace contracts as well as those to support military transport aircraft. KAI, manufacturer of military platforms including the T-50 advanced jet trainer aircraft, announced the launch of KAEMS in 2018 and started building the Sacheon plant in 2019. KAI, which is also headquartered in Sacheon, owns a 66.4% stake in the firm.
Watch: How Powerful is TOW Missile & How BGM-71 TOW Anti-Tank Guided Missiles Work?