The US Air Force (USAF) has told Congress it could use additional dollars for more F-35 Lightning II fighters, hypersonic weapons testing, and munitions if the funds are available in fiscal year (FY) 2023, according to the service’s unfunded priority list. The service said it could use an additional $921 million to buy seven more Lockheed Martin F-35A conventional variant fighters to add to its official request for 33 fighters.
Balfour Beatty Construction LLC won a $697.8 million deal or design and construction of East Campus Building #4 and a 1,186,000 square-foot parking structure at Fort Meade. Bids were solicited via the internet with three received. Work will be performed at Fort Meade, Maryland, with an estimated completion date of April 13, 2026.
Middle East & Africa
Turkey has equipped its Anka unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) with a synthetic aperture radar (SAR) to detect naval mines. Turkey is concern over mines that have been found recently in the Black Sea. These mines were deployed after Russia attacked Ukraine. So far three naval mines have been found and defused by the Turkish military.
The US State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Nigeria of AH-1Z Attack Helicopter Related FMS Acquisitions and related equipment for an estimated cost of $997 million. The Government of Nigeria has requested to buy twelve AH-1Z Attack Helicopters; twenty-eight (28) T-700 GE 401C engines (24 installed, 4 spares); and two thousand (2,000) Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) guidance sections. Also included is Night Vision Cueing Display (NVCD); commercial variant GPS with Standard Positioning Service (SPS); communication equipment; electronic warfare systems; AN/AVS-9 Aviator’s Night Vision Imaging System; M197 20mm machine gun; Target Sight System (TSS); support equipment; spare engine containers; spare and repair parts; tools and test equipment; technical data and publications; personnel training and training equipment; Mission Planning system; US Government and contractor engineering; technical, and logistics support services; US Government and contractor assistance and oversight of facilities construction to include the provisioning of plans, drawings and specifications; $25M of case funds will be allocated for institutional and technical assistance to the Armed Forces of Nigeria (AFN) to continue Air Ground Integration (AGI) program, which includes developing targeting processes that are legally compliant with International Humanitarian Law and the Laws of Armed Conflict; and other related elements of logistics and program support.
Visiting Italian defense minister Lorenzo Guerini told his Japanese counterpart Nobuo Kishi that Italy is interested in the development of Japan’s next generation F-X fighter program. Both sides have signed an accord on the transfer of defense equipment and technology back in 2017.
Defense News has obtained a spreadsheet detailing the backlogged equipment, which includes Taiwan’s $8 billion purchase of 66 F-16 fighter jets as well as $620 million to replace expiring components of its Patriot missile system. Pandemic-related acquisition issues have sparked a backlog in the US delivering $14.2 billion worth of military equipment to Taiwan that the island has purchased since 2019.
WATCH: F-X Japanese 6th Generation Fighter Jet