PORTLAND, Ore., April 18 (UPI)
FLIR Systems Inc.'s BRITE Star DP advanced imaging system is being integrated onto aircraft for Afghanistan under the U.S. Air Force LAS program.
The Brazilian aircraft, the A-29 Super Tucano, will be assembled in the United States under the Air Force's Light Air Support contract awarded in February to the Sierra Nevada Corp. and Embraer of Brazil.
FLIR said as part of that award, it received a $22 million order for its system. Delivery of BRITE Star systems will begin in June and continue through next year.
"Being selected to provide our highly advanced imaging systems for the LAS program is indicative of the growing diversification of the customers, regions, and platforms that we serve," said Earl Lewis, president and chief executive officer of FLIR. "We have a proven ability to provide state-of-the-art technologies that are critical to protecting people and are pleased to be able to continue our success in the airborne market."
An initial 20 A-29s will be supplied to the Afghanistan army air corps for flight training, reconnaissance and light air support (combat) missions.
More than 88 percent of the Super Tucano's parts are being supplied by U.S. companies.
April 18, 2013 defense-aerospace.com
(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued April 17, 2013)
JSF Model to Study Electromagnetic Effects
The Minister for Defence Science and Personnel, Warren Snowdon, today unveiled a full-scale model of the F-35A Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) which DSTO will use to study the effects of electromagnetic compatibility and interference on the aircraft.
Called Iron Bird, the Australian-built model will be tested under simulated electromagnetic conditions during the acquisition and through-life sustainment of the JSF.
The study is a significant part of ensuring the protection of the JSF against electromagnetic environmental effects such as lightning and static discharge which can impair the performance and safety of aircraft.
The JSF is a fifth-generation aircraft with highly complex electronics, sophisticated software and a structural airframe made of composite materials. This exposes the aircraft to electromagnetic interference from both naturally occurring phenomena and man-made sources, including telecommunication transmissions and radar. The impact of these interferences needs to be well understood and appropriately managed.
DSTO has developed world-class expertise in the investigation of electromagnetic radiation impact on aircraft and is engaged directly with the United States JSF Joint Project Office to undertake this study using the Iron Bird model.
The data captured will help in providing potential reductions in the cost of owning the JSF fleet and enhancing the aircraft’s capability.
The DSTO test methods provide a rapid, cost-effective means of assessing and monitoring the JSF’s ability to withstand electromagnetic exposure and minimise any impact on its systems and performance. The research will support the verification for compliance and airworthiness certification for the JSF aircraft.
Australia’s first two F-35As are due to be delivered to a United States-based training facility during 2014‑15 when Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) pilot and maintainer training will commence on the aircraft.
The Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) is part of Australia's Department of Defence. DSTO's role is to ensure the expert, impartial and innovative application of science and technology to the defence of Australia and its national interests.
Apr 18, 2013 ASDNews Source : BAE Systems PLC
Our proven laser-guided rocket continues to impress
BAE Systems’ Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS™) rocket recently launched and engaged targets from a U.S. Air Force A-10 jet, marking another milestone for the laser-guided rocket system. This expanded capability gives pilots of fast-moving jet aircraft a precision-guided stand-off system that has proven to be the low-collateral-damage weapon of choice for Marine Corps helicopter pilots in Afghanistan.
“These latest test results underscore the power and versatility of the APKWS technology and provide further proof that the system can be launched off of any platform capable of shooting an unguided 2.75-inch rocket,” said David Harrold, director of precision guidance solutions at BAE Systems. “Since its introduction on Marine Corps helicopters in combat operations, the APKWS rocket has proven its ability to defeat a broad range of targets. This test is an important step in bringing that same capability to fixed-wing aviators.”
During the recent tests at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida, two APKWS rockets were fired from an Air Force A-10 Warthog at altitudes of approximately 10,000 and 15,000 feet, at airspeeds up to 348 knots. The first controlled test-vehicle shot performed a series of pre-planned maneuvers to collect in-flight data. The second shot, into a 70-knot headwind, hit the target board well within the required 2 meters of the laser spot. The shot was laser-designated from the ground with a special operations forces marker. These shots are the first in a series planned under a Joint Capabilities Technology Demonstration program with the U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and U.S. Marine Corps. The A-10 is the first Air Force platform to conduct testing of the fixed-wing variant of the APKWS weapon. The U.S. Marine Corps recently conducted similar tests off the AV-8B Harrier aircraft.
At one-third the cost and one-third the weight of other precision weapons in inventory, the APKWS rocket is an ideal precision weapon for today’s fiscal environment, reducing the direct cost of target engagement and the total operational cost of each sortie. To date, the APKWS rocket has been qualified on the AH-1W and UH-1Y helicopters, demonstrated on the Bell 407GT, and has been flown off the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior, the Beechcraft AT-6B — and now, the A-10. It is expected to be similarly qualified for use on several other rotary- and fixed-wing aircraft including the AH-64D/E Apache, the armed MH-60R/S, AH-6, AV-8B, F-16, and F/A-18.
BAE Systems is prime contractor for the APKWS rocket, the only U.S. program of record delivering precision guidance for 2.75-inch rockets.
18 April 2013 by Guy Martin - defenceWeb
The military aid that South Africa receives from the United States every year largely goes towards supporting the Air Force’s fleet of nine C-130 Hercules aircraft.
According to an official from the US military’s Africa Command (Africom), most of the $750 000 per year of the US government’s Foreign Military Financing (FMF) grant money is used to support Hercules aircraft, and includes things like buying spares and providing aircrew training. Aircrew use simulators in the United States to practice emergency procedures that would be too risky with real aircraft.
In 2010 and 2011 South Africa was scheduled to receive $800 000 in Foreign Military Financing, according to the US Department of State. Foreign Military Financing to South Africa topped out at around $1 million but now stands at around $750 000 per annum, according to the Africom official.
Other foreign military financing goes towards the South African Navy - money goes towards an adaptor on a submarine hatch collar, the official said.
In addition to Foreign Military Financing, the SAAF has also benefitted from excess defence articles, which are received at a fraction of the original cost. The SAAF took delivery of seven new C-130B Hercules in 1963, of which six remain in use. Three ex-US Navy C-130F aircraft were acquired in 1996, with a further two ex-US Air Force C-130Bs delivered in 1998, all under the United States Excess Defence Articles Programme. The F models were retired shortly after delivery, but the nine C-130Bs were upgraded and modernised between 1996 to 2009 to the C-130BZ configuration, incorporating a modern glass cockpit.
The South African Air Force has nine C-130s in its inventory, with an average of three flying at any one time and the rest undergoing maintenance and checks.
The US FMF programme provides grants and loans to assist foreign nations in purchasing US-made weapons, defence articles, services and military training. US Congress appropriates FMF funds in the International Affairs Budget, while the Department of State allocates the funds for eligible friends and allies, and the Department of Defence executes the programme.
The FMF programme in Africa has grown from $16 million in fiscal year 2008 to $45 million in fiscal year 2011. Approximately 18 nations receive grants through the FMF program. In FY2011, the largest benefitting country in the Africom area of responsibility was Tunisia with an allocation of $17 million, followed by Morocco with $9 million and Liberia with $7 million.
The countries within the AFRICOM area of responsibility that receive FMF include: Botswana, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Tunisia, and Uganda.
17/04/2013 Michel Cabirol – LaTribune.fr
Les quatre enfants de Serge Dassault - Olivier, Laurent, Thierry et Marie-Hélène - assureraient à tour de rôle la présidence non exécutive du conseil de surveillance de groupe familial Groupe Industriel Marcel Dassault, qui contrôle Dassault Aviation notamment.
Quelle succession pour Serge Dassault, aujourd'hui âgé de 88 ans ? Une succession qui jusqu'ici opposait farouchement ses deux fils, Olivier et Laurent Dassault, qui se disputent le futur leadership de la maison Dassault. Interrogé lors de l'émission "L'invité des Echos", Olivier Dassault a déclaré qu'un nouveau schéma se dessinait pour assurer une succession apaisée de son père à la tête du groupe familial GIMD (Groupe Industriel Marcel Dassault), qui contrôle Dassault Aviation (50,55 %) notamment. "Il n'est pas impossible que, comme dans le groupe Decaux , nous fassions une présidence tournante, c'est-à-dire qu'il y ait tous les deux, trois ans un de mes frères et soeur qui soit successivement président. Ça peut être une bonne solution", a expliqué Olivier Dassault, président du conseil de surveillance du groupe Dassault depuis 2011.
Cette présidence tournante, entre Olivier, député UMP de l'Oise, Laurent, chargé des investissements du groupe Dassault dans la viticulture et président du Conseil d'Artcurial, Thierry, spécialisé dans l'intelligence économique et Marie-Hélène, responsable de la communication et du mécénat, serait soutenue par Serge Dassault, selon Olivier Dassault. "Nous sommes quatre à parts égales, nous sommes les actionnaires du groupe (...) L'important, c'est que les décisions doivent être prises tous ensemble. C'est quelque chose auquel on a réfléchi, et c'est quelque chose qui fait son chemin", a-t-il précisé. Interrogé par "Les Echos", Laurent Dassault a précisé de son côté que cette "excellente idée" venait de son père, Serge Dassault. "Mais quand nous en avons parlé, Olivier n'y semblait pas favorable. Nous sommes à la fois surpris et très heureux de constater qu'il y est finalement favorable", a-t-il souligné.
Rôle non opérationnel pour les enfants
Olivier Dassault semblait jusqu'à présent le mieux placé pour succéder à Serge Dassault à la tête de la holding familiale, qui contrôle notamment, outre Dassault Aviation, la société Dassault Systèmes, le groupe de presse Le Figaro, la salle de vente aux enchères Artcurial, l'Immobilière Dassault et les vignobles Château Dassault. Chez JCDecaux, également une entreprise familiale, les deux frères Jean-François et Jean-Charles sont codirecteurs généraux et occupent alternativement la présidence du directoire du groupe d'affichage publicitaire.
Selon "Les Echos", le schéma complet qui se dessine est le suivant : Denis Kessler, actuellement PDG du groupe SCOR, prendrait le siège de Charles Edelstenne, l'ancien PDG de Dassault Aviation. Ce dernier prendrait pour sa part la présidence exécutive du holding familial. "S'il se confirmait, ce scénario reviendrait alors à cantonner ses enfants (de Serge Dassault, ndlr), pourtant co-actionnaires à parts égales, dans un rôle non opérationnel. A tour de rôle et sans véritable pourvoir..." Un scénario surprenant qui pourrait difficilement contenter Olivier Dassault qui a toujours ambitionné de de devenir le boss chez Dassault. Pas sûr non plus que Nicole Dassault, l'épouse de Serge, n'ait pas son mot à dire sur ce scénario.