The US Navy deployed the MQ-8C Fire Scout next generation ship-based autonomous helicopter system operationally on December 14, 2021. Deployed with Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 22, Detachment 5 (HSC-22 DET 5) aboard USS Milwaukee (LCS-5), Fire Scout provides greater organic intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance and targeting (ISR&T) capabilities for the US Navy, manufacturer of the UAV said in a statement.
The US Federal Trade Commission has sued to block Lockheed Martin Corporation’s $4.4 billion proposed vertical acquisition of Aerojet Rocketdyne Holdings Inc, the last independent US supplier of missile propulsion systems. The FTC will file a complaint in the US District Court for the District of Columbia seeking a Preliminary Injunction to stop the deal pending an administrative trial. The administrative trial is scheduled to begin on June 16, 2022.
Middle East & Africa
The United Arab Emirates has approached Israel to inquire on three air defense missile systems that could beef up its missile defense capabilities. The three systems are the IAI Barak 8, Barak ER, and the Rafael Spyder. The Israeli systems will serve as an interim solution against attacks from Houthis until the M-SAM from South Korea is inducted into service.
According to Breaking Defense, a Kuwait-based defense analyst has said that the US Marine Corps is interested in taking over Kuwait’s F/A-18s when they are retired from service. Malaysia and Tunisia are said to be interested in acquiring those legacy Hornets, however, the USMC will have priority as approval is required from the US government before Kuwait can sell the jets to other nations. The USMC is planning to retire its F/A-18s in 2030 and has given its existing F/A-18 fleet some upgrades such as a new AN/APG-79(v)4 radar and ejection seats.
The Kalashnikov Group’s kamikaze drone KUB-E guided munitions system has received an export permit from Russian authorities making it possible to promote this product abroad. “The Kalashnikov, Group, together with Rosoboronexport, is ready to start promoting the KUB UAV on the international market, including during intergovernmental commissions and international exhibitions. It should be noted that this drone already has a successful experience of combat use, confirmed in real conditions,” the press service of the Kalashnikov Group said.
The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has received the first Lockheed Martin C-130J-30 Hercules transport aircraft upgraded to Block 8.1 standard, the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) announced on January 19. The aircraft, which arrived at RAAF Richmond air base in New South Wales, was upgraded by Lockheed Martin in the United States with support from the United States Air Force.
Watch: Top 10 Iconic RAAF Aircraft – 3: Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules