Suivre ce blog Administration + Créer mon blog
13 février 2015 5 13 /02 /février /2015 08:50
The Eyes of the Future RN Carrier Strike Force

Thales UK and Lockheed Martin submitted final offers for the Crowsnest carrier based, Helicopter borne AEW solutions last month, competing for the £500 million ($761 million) contract.


Feb 8, 2015 Defence-Update


The British MOD is set to select soon the future Airborne Early Warning (AEW) system to be deployed on the future Royal Navy (RN) Queen Elizabeth II aircraft carriers. The Crowsnest airborne surveillance and control (ASaC) program set to become operational in 2019, will providing the Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers an organic air surveillance and battlespace management for the carrier strike force from 2020.


Thales UK and Lockheed Martin submitted final offers for the Crowsnest solutions last month, competing for the £500 million ($761 million) contract. Although the two radar systems proposed by the companies are designed for the Royal Navy AgustaWestland EH101 Merlin Mk 2 ASaC helicopters, they are profoundly different in their mission approach, future capabilities and cost. As part of the U.K. defense ministry’s assessment of the two options, both have been flight tested on a Merlin Mk. 2.

As the Sea King family helicopters is due to retire in 2016, MOD is extending the service of a number of the Sea King helicopters operated by 849 Naval Air Squadron through 2018, to prevent a capability gap between the withdrawal of the Sea King ASaC.7 and the introduction of Merlin ASaC.2. 10 of the Merlin helicopters are to be modified to accept the Airborne Surveillance and Control (ASaC) system, configured as ‘roll on/roll off’ kit.

Leading a £750 million ($1.15 billion) upgrade to 30 of the Royal Navy’s legacy Merlin HM1 helicopters, Lockheed Martin UK has been awarded a £24 million contract to run a competition to design, develop and demonstrate Crowsnest. As the company is also one of the competitors for the tender, the Merlin team has to be ‘firewalled’ to prevent leaking commercially sensitive information to Lockheed Martin UK.

The solution proposed by Thales UK recapitalizes existing the Searchwater 2000 radars currently providing the AEW mission for the Royal Navy on board HMS Ocean. These helicopters carry the mechanically rotating radar in a retractable drum-shaped dome lowered into position below the helicopter after takeoff. Positioned below the fuselage, the rotating radar gains unobstructed view of the hemisphere below, thus covering effectively 360 degrees. Thales plans to utilize this system for the new platform, using a modernized and updated radar along with its associated Cerberus mission system – both are currently used on the Sea King ASaC7.


Partager cet article
25 mars 2014 2 25 /03 /mars /2014 18:30
photo Airbus DS

photo Airbus DS


25.03.2014 by Arie Egozi - FG


Tel Aviv - Israel Aerospace Industries is in different stages of negotiations with four countries that have shown interest in the Airbus Defence & Space C295 medium transport, fitted with an airborne early warning and control system suite supplied by its Elta Systems subsidiary.


Airbus has previously flown one of its C295 development aircraft with an aerodynamic model of an AEW rotodome installed.


Elta is offering a mission system including a radar, command, control and communications equipment and electronic intelligence sensors.


An Israeli source says the proposed AEW version of the C295 is an attractive option for air forces that already use the European design for transport applications. The current interest includes some nations that currently use the twin-turboprop, the source reveals.


Airbus says an AEW version of the C295 would have a mission endurance of up to 9h, and be capable of operating at an altitude of up to 26,000ft (7,930m). The company is exhibiting a Brazilian air force-operated C295 at the 25-30 March FIDAE show in Santiago, Chile.

Partager cet article
17 février 2012 5 17 /02 /février /2012 08:25
SE Asian Nations Seek Improved ASW, AEW

Photo: Lockheed Martin


Feb 16, 2012 By Leithen Francis defense technology international


Singapore - Concerns over China’s claims to the South China Sea are sparking an arms race among its Southeast Asian neighbors, some of which have maritime patrol, airborne early warning and anti-submarine warfare (ASW) aircraft high on their priority lists.


China has laid claim to most of the South China Sea, a body of water that includes vital sea lanes and under which lie rich deposits of oil and gas.


In May of last year, Chinese ships reportedly cut the cables of Binh Minh 02, an oil-surveying vessel within Vietnam’s 200-nm exclusive economic zone and operated by the Vietnam Oil & Gas Group. In the same month, two Chinese fighters allegedly entered Philippine airspace, an intrusion related to the disputed Spratly Islands. The Philippine navy also found wooden posts erected on Amy Douglas Bank, Reed Bank and Boxall Reef—all within Philippine-claimed waters. The navy, which promptly removed the posts, accused China of placing them there.


Vietnam’s foreign minister, Pham Binh Minh, and the Philippines foreign minister, Albert del Rosario, met in Hanoi last year to discuss implementation of a defense cooperation agreement.


The dispute with China has led the Philippines and Vietnam to seek closer defense ties with the U.S., a remarkable development in terms of U.S.-Vietnam relations considering their history. It seems that memories of the Vietnam War are no longer a stumbling block. On Sept. 19, Vietnam’s deputy defense minister, Nguyen Chi Vinh, and the U.S. deputy assistant secretary of defense, Robert Scher, signed a memorandum of understanding aimed at boosting military cooperation.


Sources say the Vietnamese are seeking to buy ASW aircraft and have shown interest in the Lockheed Martin P-3. The Southeast Asian nation wants the P-3s to protect its exclusive economic zone in the South China Sea and to help stop Chinese submarines from entering Vietnamese waters. China’s largest submarine base is on the southern tip of Hainan Island, just off the northern Vietnam coast.


Vietnam has a 3,444-km (2,135-mi.) coastline, so it needs long-range aircraft. Advanced sonar-detection equipment also is required to combat China’s increasingly advanced submarines. For ASW, Vietnam has been using four Beriev Be-12 amphibious aircraft that it received in 1981, as well as dozens of Kamov Ka-25/-27 helicopters.


When the P-3s last operated in Vietnam during the war, Cam Ranh Bay coincidentally was their main base. The U.S. Navy used P-3As to patrol the coastline in search of gunboats and Chinese trawlers providing supplies to the Vietcong hiding in South Vietnam.



The other contender for Vietnam’s ASW requirement is the Airbus Military C295. The Spaniards have already developed a relationship there, having sold three Airbus Military C212 maritime patrol aircraft to the Vietnam marine police. The first aircraft was delivered late last year.


The Philippine air force is also seeking to buy maritime patrol aircraft. Some of the models being considered include the Alenia ATR 42MP, Hawker Beechcraft King Air 350ER, Airbus CN235, Viking Air Twin Otter and Bombardier Q-series.


The country’s leaders have also talked up the prospect of the Philippines once again procuring fighter aircraft. The Philippines has had no fighter aircraft since 2005 when it retired its last Northrop F-5.


Philippines President Benigno Aquino, 3rd, disclosed in December that he will be visiting the U.S. early this year and plans to ask U.S. President Barack Obama for military assistance. “I will meet President Obama next year, perhaps by April. I will remind him of our strategic partnership and he might remember that we don’t have a fighter [jet],” Aquino said in a speech to Philippine air force personnel late in 2011. He added that he will ask the U.S. to donate used fighter aircraft to the Philippines, under an arrangement similar to that between the U.S. and Indonesia. The U.S. last year agreed to donate 24 second-hand Lockheed Martin F-16A/Bs to Indonesia, which could then pay to upgrade them to the C/D standard.


Malaysia also has a requirement for fighters and is seeking to buy 18 new aircraft to replace its MiG-29s. The contenders are the Boeing F/A-18E/F, Saab Gripen, Dassault Rafale, Sukhoi Su-30, Sukhoi Su-35 and Eurofighter Typhoon.


The MiG-29s are stationed at Kuantan AFB, in West Malaysia overlooking the South China Sea. If Malaysia ever has an armed conflict with China, it is likely that the fighter squadron at Kuantan will be at the front line. East and West Malaysia are separated by the South China Sea, and Malaysia has a requirement for maritime patrol and airborne early warning (AEW) aircraft to monitor its exclusive maritime economic zone. Malaysia’s defense minister, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, says Malaysia has a requirement for three AEW aircraft, one each to be stationed in East and West Malaysia and one standby.


Northrop Grumman is proposing to sell the E-2D, Saab is promoting its Saab Erieye radar mounted on an Embraer EMB-145, and Airbus Military is pushing the C295 AEW. Lockheed Martin U.K. and Thales, meanwhile, are each proposing that Malaysia use one of the air force’s existing aircraft, such as a Lockheed Martin C-130, and upgrade it with AEW capabilities using roll-on, roll-off mission systems.


Malaysia’s air force chief, Gen. Rodzali bin Daud, says “It is important to maintain a high degree of situational awareness and central to this is AEW.” Malaysia is relying on ground-based radar supplemented by some Beechcraft King Air 350s fitted with Thales radar, but these small aircraft have limited flying range. Rodzali also says: “Land-based radar’s lack of mobility puts it second to airborne systems.”


Malaysia has a requirement for ASW aircraft as well. Its navy has stated it wants to buy six ASW helicopters. It is considering the Sikorsky MH-60R and the AgustaWestland AW159. Defense Minister Ahmad told DTI’s sister publication Aviation Week & Space Technology in December that “the project is in our pipeline, but because of budget constraints, it hasn’t been given a priority [go-ahead] yet.” Industry executives say the government may be waiting until after the next national election, expected sometime in 2012, before moving ahead with this procurement.


In fact, this is the case with all the other requirements. Malaysia will only allocate a budget and select a winner for its AEW and fighter requirements after the elections.


Malaysia’s Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) is also still waiting for a budget for the five maritime patrol aircraft it plans to acquire on long-term wet leases. Three types are in the running—the RUAG 228NG, Cessna Grand Caravan and Alenia ATR 42MP.


Singapore uses Fokker 50s for maritime patrol and has one of the most advanced AEW capabilities in the region, thanks to its Gulfstream G550s fitted with AEW mission equipment from Israel Aerospace Industries’ Elta Systems. For ASW, it has Sikorsky S-70Bs, but industry executives say is also planning to buy fixed-wing ASW aircraft (see p. 23).


The island nation, unlike other countries in Southeast Asia, has no territorial disputes with China. But Singapore, which is dependent on sea trade for its livelihood, can ill afford to have submarines blocking its sea lanes.


China has been adding Shang-class nuclear-powered subs, while India has announced that it plans to buy six more diesel-electric models. (Russia’s arms export agency, Rosoboronexport, disclosed that it will be proposing Russian-built Amur 650-class subs.) Six French Scorpene vessels from an earlier tender are under construction in India.


Singapore’s closest neighbors have also been adding submarines, largely in response to China’s submarine buildup.


Vietnam’s defense minister, Gen. Phung Quang Thanh, says his country has six Kilo-class diesel-powered subs on order from Russia. Malaysia recently added three submarines: two new Scorpene-class subs jointly built by French and Spanish companies, and one reconditioned ex-French navy Agosta-class vessel. Indonesia has two German-built Cakra-class subs and in December ordered three submarines from South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering. Thailand’s navy is eyeing second-hand Type U206As from Germany, according to local news reports.

Partager cet article


  • : RP Defense
  • : Web review defence industry - Revue du web industrie de défense - company information - news in France, Europe and elsewhere ...
  • Contact


Articles Récents