FMS: HIMARS for Poland, Patriot for Romania | PAC-3 MSE cleared for FRP | Manilla orders Super Tucanos for CAS, COIN, and Intel mission
- Lockheed Martin heralded the successful neutralisation by five Patriot Advanced Capability-3 interceptors of four tactical ballistic missile targets during a recent test at White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. Four PAC-3 Cost Reduction Initiative (CRI) interceptors and one PAC-3 Missile Segment Enhancement (MSE) were used during the test, with the successful PAC-3 MSE intercept part of a requirement that “supports” a full-rate production decision for the variant. The MSE variant uses a larger, dual-pulse solid-rocket motor and larger control fins that double the missile’s reach and improve performance against evolving ballistic and cruise missiles. It was fired for the first time by the US Army during a successful intercept test last summer.
- Canada’s government has received a proposal from a team led by Lockheed Martin to build vessels for the Canadian Surface Combatant (CSC) program. Partnered with BAE Systems, CAE, L3 Technologies, MDA and Ultra Electronics, the effort is offering the Type 26 Global Combat Ship (GCS), and will utilise high-tech platform innovations from prominent Canadian companies, including a Canadian-developed combat management system, CMS 330. No other details on the proposal were given. Designed by BAE Systems, eight Type 26 frigates are already planned for the British Royal Navy.
Middle East & Africa
- Five local firms have responded to the Turkish government’s procurement agency, the Undersecretariat for Defence Industries’ (SSM) request for proposals to develop an indigenous power pack for the Altay main battle tank (MBT). This is the second attempt at developing a national diesel engine, after an initial award granted to Tumosan was rescinded after the company was unable to secure another foreign partner after Austrian firm AVL List GmbH was restricted by its government to participate in the program. Other supplier governments were also reluctant to supply transfer-of-technology and, in some cases, also requiring export licenses on subcomponents available commercially-off-the-shelf. Tumosan are among the five entries into the new award alongside BMC Automotive, Istanbul Marine Shipbuilding Industry and Trade, Figes Physics and Geometry Computer Simulation Trade, and TUSAS Motor. The renewed power plant program will see the Turkish industry develop critical components, such as the hydrostatic steering unit, turbocharger, cooling package, alternator, and transmission pump, and will be free of external intellectual property and regulatory restrictions.
- The US State Department has approved Poland to proceed with the possible foreign military sale (FMS) of the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS). As with all sales cleared by the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), it still requires congressional approval. Valued at an estimated $250 million, the package requested includes 16 Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) M31A1 Unitary, nine Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) M30A1 alternative warheads, 61 Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) M57 Unitary. Also included are eight Universal Position Navigation Units (UPNU), 34 Low Cost Reduced Range (LCRR) practice rockets, 1,642 Guidance and Control Section Assemblies for GMLRS, Missile Common Test Sets and Devices, testing Precision, Lightweight GPS Receivers (PLGR), support equipment, US Government and contractor services, training, and other related elements of logistics and program support. Lockheed Martin out of Grand Prairie, TX, will act as lead contractor, and the sale will involve cooperation with the state-owned Polska Grupa Zbrojenjowa (PGZ).
- December will see the Finnish government release a request for information for the procurement of a new medium-range air defense missile system that has twice the range of its NASAMS. The purchase is meant to fill a capability gap left by the retirement of the 9K37 Buk M1 system previously operated by Helsinki. Speaking on the procurement plans, Colonel Ari Gronroos refuted speculation that they would purchase the Extended Range version of the AIM-120 AMRAAM(-ER), adding that a cheaper option would be to continue using the same base AIM-120 interceptor used by its NASAMS. Gronroos went on to say that the requirement is unlikely to need an anti-ballistic missile capability.
- Romania has officially signed a letter of offer and acceptance for the purchase of Raytheon’s Patriot air defense system from the US Army. The accord paves the way for Romania’s Patriot force to rapidly reach Initial Operational Capability by allowing for negotiations between the US government and Raytheon. As part of the sale, Bucharest will the receive Patriot Configuration 3+, the most advanced configuration available, as well as an undisclosed quantity of GEM-T and PAC-3 MSE interceptor missiles.
- Embraer’s A-29 Super Tucano light attack aircraft has been selected by the Philippine Air Force (PAF), joining Indonesia as the second operator of the aircraft in the Asia-Pacific region. Six units will be delivered from 2019 and will perform several missions for Manilla including close air support, air-to-air intercept, light attack, COIN, and surveillance operations. The importance of close air support for the PAF was brought to the fore earlier this year during the government’s effort to oust Islamic State-supporting militants from city of Marawi, located on the southern island of Mindanao. Philippine assets used in the campaign included KAI’s FA-50 fighter, which delivered precision strikes against militants holed up in buildings.
- A follow-on support package for Singapore’s Peace Carvin V F-15SG pilot proficiency training program with the US Air Force has been cleared by the DSCA. Covered in the package are 40 GBU-10 Paveway II Laser Guided Bomb (LGB) units, consisting of: MXU-651B/B Air Foil Groups (AFG), MAU-209C/B or MAU-169L/B Computer Control Groups (CCG), MK-84 or BLU-117B/B bomb bodies; 84 GBU-12 Paveway II LGB units, consisting of: MXU-650C/B AFG, MAU-209C/B or MAU-168L/B CCGs, MK-82 or BLU-111B/B bomb bodies; and 60 FMU-152 or FMU-139D/B fuzes. Also included are AIM-120 Telemetry Kits; target drones; High-Bandwidth Compact Telemetry Module kits; exercise participation support; weapons, Electronic Combat International Security Assistance Program (ECISAP), and systems support; medical support; vehicle and ferry support; airlift and aerial refueling; individual equipment; maintenance, spare and repair parts; publications and technical documentation; personnel training and training equipment; US Government and contractor, logistics, and technical support services; and other related elements of logistical and program support. The entire package is estimated at $415 million, but will not require a prime contractor, with manpower support to be decided through competition and defense articles to come from US stocks.
- Roll out of the first Il78M-90A aerial tanker:
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