USAF To Field Interim ERVS Solution For KC-46A Tanker | France Proposed MRTT Sale To India | DoS Approved FICS Sale To TECRO
International Enterprises won a $12.5 million requirements contract requirements contract for F-16 modular low power radio frequency (MLPRF) and dual mode transmitter (DMT) repairs. This contract provides for the repair of both MLPRF and DMT, which function as part of the radar systems of each F-16 C/D aircraft. The General Dynamics F-16 Fighting Falcon is a single-engine supersonic multirole fighter aircraft originally developed by General Dynamics for the USAF. One of the most versatile aircraft in the US Air Force inventory, the F-16 Fighting Falcon has been the mainstay of the Air Force aerial combat fleet. With over 1,000 F-16s in service, the platform has been adapted to complete a number of missions, including air-to-air fighting, ground attack and electronic warfare. Work will take place in Alabama. Estimated completion date is December 6, 2025.
The US Air Force is to field interim enhancements to the problematic Remote Vision System (RVS) for its Boeing KC-46A Pegasus tanker-transport aircraft. The Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC) announced the move, saying that demonstration flights conducted over the summer (third quarter) had validated the Enhanced Remote Vision System (ERVS) as a stopgap measure until RVS 2.0 is rolled out in late 2023. RVS 2.0 is the agreed final solution to resolve Category 1 deficiencies associated with the current RVS. “The implementation of ERVS will provide some benefit to our ‘Total Force’ boom operators in the near-term, but most importantly will not delay the fielding of RVS 2.0,” General Jacqueline Van Ovost, commander of Air Mobility Command (AMC), was quoted as saying.
Middle East & Africa
The guided-missile destroyer USS Ralph Johnson captured over 2,000 pounds of suspected narcotics in the Arabian Sea, the US Navy said on Monday. The interdiction was in support of the 33-nation Combined Maritime Forces’ mission known as Combined Task Force 150, which combats illicit operations on the seas. The Navy Ship assigned to the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group, found a stateless dhow, a privately-owned sailing vessel, “loitering without power in international waters” on Friday, a Navy statement said. The Combined Maritime Forces, formed in 2002 and currently led by the Royal Saudi Naval Force, conduct security operations in the Arabian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman and Indian Ocean.
France proposed selling six MRTT aerial tankers to India in a government-to-government deal that involves converting second-hand A330 airliners. These former passenger airplanes are between five to seven years in age and France will certify them for 30 years of lifespan. Another alternative proposal being considered by the Indian Air Force was to wet-lease the tankers from a British company. The IAF now operate seven Russian IL-76 M refuellers with Pakistan acquiring four of the same refuellers from Ukraine and China operating three of the same Russian refuellers along with 10 vintage modified versions of Russian bombers.
NATO announced the operational capability of a special operations command on Monday, organized by Belgium, the Netherlands and Denmark. The Composite Special Operations Component Command, or C-SOCC, was launched in 2017 to provide a unified “deployable multinational headquarters, specifically designed for commanding several Special Operations Forces task groups.” The new command is expected to provide “the participating nations with a capability that exceeds the sum of their individual national contributions,“a NATO statement said. The effort is one of 13 NATO High Visibility Projects meant to reduce costs and improve operational values through shared equipment, training and procedures.
The US State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) of a Field Information Communications System (FICS) and related equipment for around $280 million. The decision “shows the US commitment to the Taiwan Relations Act and Six Assurances,” the Taiwanese Foreign Ministry said Tuesday on Twitter after the sale was approved by the US State Department. “It also enables the country to maintain a robust defense in the face of China’s military provocations, as well as Indo Pacific peace and stability,” it added. The US Defense Security Cooperation Agency said on Monday the US State Department made a “determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the United States (TECRO) of a Field Information Communications System and related equipment for an estimated cost of $280 million”.
Watch: Dream Realized: The Air Force’s New Multi-Mission KC-46 Tanker Is Ready