CH-53K naval heavy-lift helo: General Electric won a $101.5 million contract modification, which procures 21 T408-GE-400 turboshaft engines and associated engine, programmatic and logistics services in support of CH-53K King Stallion Lot Five low rate initial production aircraft. The King Stallion is the premier heavy-lift helicopter ever built by the United States government. It is an all-new heavy-lift helicopter that will expand the fleet’s ability to move more material more rapidly. That power comes from three new General Electric T-408 engines, which are more powerful and more fuel efficient than the T-64 engines currently outfitted on the CH-53E. The T408 gives the CH-53K helicopter the power to carry a 27,000-pound external load over a mission radius of 110 nautical miles in hot weather conditions, nearly triple the external load carrying capacity of current aircraft. Work will take place in Massachusetts. Estimated completion is in December 2024.
DDG-51 Destroyers: The US Navy has moved one step closer towards integrating the High Energy Laser with Integrated Optical-dazzler and Surveillance (HELIOS) laser weapon system on an Arleigh Burke destroyer by taking delivery of the first system. A recent demonstration by Lockheed Martin and the Navy showed that the laser power achieved was in excess of the 60 kW requirement. Lockheed Martin completed the Critical Design Review and Navy Factory Qualification Test milestones in 2020, demonstrating the value of system engineering rigor and proven Aegis system integration and test processes on the way to delivering operationally effective and suitable laser weapon system that meets the Navy’s mission requirements. More »
Rapid Fire | Thursday, January 21, 2021, 05:00 UTC ()
The United States and Britain confirmed a joint declaration Tuesday for the Carrier Strike Group 2021 deployment to be led by Britain’s aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth Queen. Signed by acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller and British Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, the joint declaration enables the deployment of US Navy and Marine Corps equipment and personnel as part of the inaugural operational deployment of the Carrier Strike Group. The deployment will include a detachment of US Marine Corps F-35 Lightning II aircraft and the Navy’s USS The Sullivans.
Leonardo and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems have announced that they have completed the delivery of Trophy Active Protection Systems (APS) ordered by the US Army for installation on Abrams main battle tanks. This marks a major milestone in the US Army’s efforts to outfit multiple brigades of tanks with APS to protect soldiers’ lives against increasing anti-armor threats. Developed by Rafael in response to successful anti-armor attacks and the ongoing proliferation of those threats, Trophy APS provides “combat-proven protection against rockets and missiles while simultaneously locating and reporting the origin of the hostile fire for immediate response”.
Middle East & Africa
US forces conducted two airstrikes on al-Shabaab operatives in Somalia, killing three members of the Islamist terrorist group, US Africa Command said. No civilians were injured or killed in the airstrikes, conducted near Jamaame and Deb Scinnele in coordination with the government of Somalia, according to initial assessment, AFRICOM said in a statement. “These strikes targeted known al-Shabaab leaders involved in IED facilitation, fighter training and attack planning,” US Air Force Maj. Gen. Dagvin Anderson said in a statement. “Striking these leaders disrupts al-Shabaab’s ability to attack our partners and indiscriminately kill innocent civilians with improvised explosive devices. We are working closely with our Somali partners to support their operations against al-Shabaab, protect their people and provide governance,” said Anderson, commander of Joint Task Force-Quartz.
The first Hellenic Air Force upgraded F-16V fighter has flown on January 17, the Hellenic Aerospace Industry has announced. The press release says the flight went smoothly. The aircraft is the former F-16C Block 52+ with HAF serial 005 (USAF serial 06-0005) which was acquired through the Peace Xenia IV Foreign Military Sales program in 2005 and delivered in 2009 to the 335 Mira Tigris (“Tigers”) at Araxos Air Base. The aircraft was chosen to become the prototype for the Block 72 upgrade, which was performed locally by the Hellenic Aerospace Industries (HAI) at Tanagra Air Base, with the support of Lockheed Martin, beginning in January 2020.
A suspect has been arrested and detained over the theft of equipment from a Il-80 airborne command post. Zhora Khachunts’s lawyer told TASS that her client was arrested on January 4 and will be detained till Mar. 4. The accused is being held in the Taganrog pre-trial detention center. The Il-80 command post was undergoing maintenance at Taganrog Yuzhny airport when it was found broken into on December 4 last year. According to the news report, 39 radio equipment and 5 electronic boards were taken from the aircraft.
Pakistan conducted a successful flight test of Shaheen-III, a surface-to-surface ballistic missile, capable of hitting targets as far as 2,750 kilometers. The test flight was aimed at re-validating various design and technical parameters of the weapon system, said Director General Inter Services Public Relations (DG ISPR) Major General Babar Iftikhar in a tweet. According to ISPR, the successful flight test, with its impact point in the Arabian Sea, was witnessed by Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee (CJCSC) General Nadeem Raza, Director General Strategic Plans Division, Commander Army Strategic Forces Command, Chairman NESCOM and the scientists and engineers involved.
Watch: Tesla in Pakistan || Qatari & Azeri JF-17 Block III || Shaheen 3 Tests || Hal Tejas 1B & Variants?
| India’s Cabinet Committee on Security approved the procurement of 83 indigenously designed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) for the Indian Air Force (IAF), including 73 Mk 1A fighters and 10 Mk 1 dual-seat trainers. The Indian government’s Press Information Bureau (PIB) announced that same day that the CCS, which is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, cleared the acquisition of the aircraft for $6.2 billion along with work on the design and construction of related infrastructure for $164.3 million. The LCA Mk 1A, which was designed by the government-run Aeronautical Development Agency and will be built by state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) in Bangalore, is still under development. More »
| Container Research Corp. won an $11.5 million deal, which provides for the procurement of up to a maximum quantity of 275 V-22 Mission Auxiliary Tank System storage containers for the Navy, Marines, Air Force and Foreign Military Sales customers. The V-22's fuel system is integrated into the wings and fuselage. The basic configuration consists of five tanks, the two feed tanks, two forward sponson tanks and the right aft sponson tank. This is the standard MV-22 configuration. The CV-22 adds four additional tanks in each wing. Both variants can carry additional auxiliary tanks in the cabin for self-deployment or ferry missions. The following table lists the number and capacity of each tank. Work will take place in Aston, Pennsylvania. Estimated completion is in January 2026. More »
| Kyodo News reports that the core team to develop Japan’s next fighter has formed and the team will eventually grow to have up to 500 members. Japan has plans to domestically develop a sixth-generation F-X stealth fighter that can keep China’s increasingly capable air force at bay. A development timeline foresees construction of a prototype in 2024, with a first flight to follow in 2028. More »
| The director of expeditionary warfare in the Office of the Chief of US Naval Operations has disclosed a plan to bring a containerized anti-ship missile system to the San Antonio Class amphibious transport dock. Maj. Gen. Tracy W. King said one system will be deployed to a ship within 12 months to let the Navy and Marines “play around with it” before deciding how to field it. He added that the RGM-184 Naval Strike Missile (NSM) is a leading contender. More »
| Raytheon Missiles and Defense won an $8.5 million contract for procurement of long lead material in support of Standard Missile-2 (SM-2) Foreign Military Sales production requirements to include all up rounds, instrumental kits, engineering services and spares. This contract involves FMS to Korea, Denmark, Netherlands, Spain, Taiwan and Japan. The Standard Missile-2 (SM-2) is a fleet-area air defense weapon that provides anti-air warfare and limited anti-surface warfare capability against today’s advanced anti-ship missiles and aircraft. With a range of 90 nautical miles and an altitude of 65,000 feet, the SM-2 is an integral part of layered defense that protects naval assets, giving warfighters greater operational flexibility. Work will take place in the Netherlands, Texas, Arizona and is expected to be finished by March 2023. More »
| A Philippine Navy team will be heading to the United States this quarter to inspect the C-12 transport aircraft that the service intends to buy. PN public affairs office chief Lt. Commander Maria Christina Roxas made this remark when sought for comment on reports that the Navy is planning to acquire the aircraft from the United States via its Excess Defense Articles (EDA) Program for the NAW. It was reported earlier that the Naval Air Wing intends to buy up to eight aircraft that the US is selling off as Excess Defense Articles. More »