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20 mars 2014 4 20 /03 /mars /2014 13:35
photo Israel Aerospace Industries

photo Israel Aerospace Industries

 

18 Mar 2014 By: Arie Egozi– FG

 

The Indian air force is evaluating the purchase of additional Israel Aerospace Industries Harop loitering munitions, as deliveries continue under a previous order placed in 2012.

The ground-launched Harop has some of the same capabilities as a tactical unmanned air vehicle, and features a high performance electro-optical/infrared camera. Once airborne, the system searches for, detects and attacks time-critical land- or sea-based static or moving targets, with claimed "pinpoint accuracy". IAI says the weapon can be employed across a variety of scenarios, including low and high intensity conflicts, urban warfare and counter-terrorist operations.

Such activities are monitored by an operator in a mission control shelter, who can approve or abort an engagement in real time to avoid collateral damage. Strike activities can also be conducted using a second Harop simultaneously, with this unit providing a video-based battle damage assessment, before being used to perform a follow-on attack or returning to loitering mode.

"After launch the Harop knows to stay in the air for several hours at a time, and to do so at different altitudes, up to 10,000ft [3,050m]," Boaz Levy, general manager of IAI's Missile and Space Systems division says in an article about the Harop posted on the Israeli air force website. "The ability to change altitudes opens up the possibility of synchronising the time and direction to the target," he adds.

The Indian armed forces have used a previous version of the system, Harpy, for some years.

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20 mars 2014 4 20 /03 /mars /2014 12:50
photo AgustaWestland

photo AgustaWestland

 

 

Mar 20, 2014 ASDNews Source : AgustaWestland, A Finmeccanica Company

 

AgustaWestland, a Finmeccanica company, and the Italian Air Force are pleased to announce the signing of a Letter of Intent aimed at further strengthening their already well-established cooperation through the future set up of joint training solutions. The announcement was made on the occasion of the official ceremony for the maiden flight of the first HH-101AHH-101A CAESAR helicopter for the Italian Air Force held at Yeovil plant, UK, today.

 

AgustaWestland and Italian AF Sign LOI for Training

The partners intend to co-develop new capabilities to meet the future rotary-wing training requirements by leveraging synergies between the AgustaWestland Training Organization based at its Frosinone plant, close to Rome, and the Italian Air Force 72nd Wing (72° Stormo). Through this mutually beneficial cooperation, AgustaWestland will further expand the level of service in the training sector to meet the evolving requirements of the customer, while the Italian Air Force will enhance the level of training for its personnel through an innovative, efficient strategy.

 

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19 mars 2014 3 19 /03 /mars /2014 19:30
Raid israélien contre des sites militaires syriens sur le Golan

 

19.03.2014 Romandie.com (ats)

 

Israël a bombardé plusieurs sites militaires syriens, tuant un soldat et en blessant sept. Ces attaques ont été menées en représailles à l'explosion d'une bombe artisanale qui a blessé quatre militaires de Tsahal mardi sur le plateau du Golan.

 

Parmi les cibles visées durant la nuit par la chasse israélienne figuraient un poste de commandement, un centre d'entraînement et des batteries d'artillerie, a déclaré un porte-parole de l'armée israélienne. Le régime de Bachar al-Assad a condamné ces bombardements, mais n'a pas brandi la menace de représailles.

 

Le Premier ministre israélien Benjamin Netanyahu avait averti dès mardi qu'Israël réagirait "avec force" après l'explosion de mardi. Le ministre de la défense Moshé Yaalon a mis en demeure mercredi le régime du président al-Assad de cesser de "coopérer" avec les ennemis d'Israël.

 

Présence du Hezbollah

 

Certaines zones du côté syrien du plateau du Golan sont contrôlées par des rebelles combattant l'armée syrienne, y compris des combattants jihadistes hostiles à Israël. Selon Jérusalem, le mouvement chiite libanais Hezbollah, allié de Bachar al-Assad et ennemi de longue date d'Israël, est également présent dans cette région.

 

Les quatre soldats israéliens ont été blessés alors qu'ils patrouillaient sur la ligne séparant le territoire capturé par Israël à la Syrie lors de la Guerre des Six Jours en 1967 et annexé par la suite - annexion non reconnue par la communauté internationale - du territoire syrien.

 

Cet incident est le plus grave pour l'armée israélienne depuis le début du soulèvement contre Bachar al Assad il y a plus de trois ans.

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19 mars 2014 3 19 /03 /mars /2014 17:55
10 000 heures de vol au compteur

 

 

19/03/2014 Armée de l'air

 

Le 24 février 2014, le capitaine Christophe Redien a franchi la barre symbolique des 10 000 heures de vol aux commandes d’un Falcon 7X de la base aérienne (BA) 107 de Villacoublay. À titre de comparaison, un pilote effectue en moyenne entre 5 000 et 6 000 heures de vol dans sa carrière.

 

Affecté à l’escadron de transformation, d’entraînement et de calibration (ETEC) 65, le capitaine Redien pilote également des Falcon 900 et a été aux commandes, avant leur retrait l’année dernière, des Falcon 50. Engagé en 1984, il est d’abord élève pilote à vocation d'officier à Clermont-Ferrand, sur Mudry CAP-10, à Cognac, sur Epsilon et CM170 Fouga, puis à Tours sur Alphajet.

 

Son brevet de chasse en poche, il devient moniteur sur Epsilon en 1986, au sein de l’école de pilotage de l’armée de l’air de la BA 709 de Cognac. Il rejoint ensuite Cambrai et devient pilote sur Mirage F1 pendant un an. En 1991, il se réoriente dans le transport sur Xingu à Avord, avant d’intégrer le GOST (groupe opérations spéciales transport) à sa création en 1993, au sein de l’escadron de transport 3/61 « Poitou ». En 1995, le capitaine Redien rejoint la DOS (division opérations spéciales) au centre d’instruction des équipages de transport de Toulouse.

 

Depuis 1999, il est pilote au sein de l’ETEC. À la descente de l’avion, le 24 février dernier, le capitaine Redien était attendu de pied ferme par ses collègues, qui n’ont pas failli au respect des traditions de l’armée de l’air et qui l’ont plongé dans un bassin pour fêter l’événement.

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19 mars 2014 3 19 /03 /mars /2014 12:55
Forces Spéciales : CPA10, experts 3D

 

Poser d’assaut - Les posers d’assaut permettent un « déchargement » rapide d’hommes ou de matériels en toute discrétion, avec redécollage immédiat quelques minutes plus tard

 

Crédits R. Connan©DICoD

 

Ils maitrisent le savoir-faire commando et sont spécialistes du domaine aéronautique. Les commandos parachutistes de l’air n°10 (CPA10) d’Orléans cultivent leur expertise au profit des opérations spéciales. Nous avons pu passer quelques jours à leurs côtés lors de manœuvres d’entrainements à Djibouti, dans la corne de l’Afrique.

Forces Spéciales : CPA10, experts 3D

Au programme : guidage appui feu et poser d’assaut, ou en d’autres termes, comment guider un avion de chasse pour détruire une cible ou faire atterrir un avion en plein désert ?

 

La réponse en images.

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19 mars 2014 3 19 /03 /mars /2014 08:30
Drop Zone Is Ready at Nevatim airbase

 

20.02.2014 Shani Pomes - IAF

 

A special parachuting zone that will serve ground troops was inaugurated at Nevatim airbase. The new zone will reduce flight times and in so doing, will save money on future training costs. "The use of parachuting capabilities will be a surprise in terms of place, time and technique"

 

One of the most familiar capabilities of the Hercules C-130 is the airdropping of paratroops. A new parachuting zone, which will strengthen the ties between ground forces and the IAF, was inaugurated at Nevatim airbase in the Negev, the home of the Hercules C-130 planes.

"The parachuting zone that we are inaugurating will be called "Machbesh" (Hebrew for steamroller) named after the parachuting operation executed at the Mitle Pass during the Sinai campaign in 1956", explained Brigadier General Lihu Hacohen, commander of the Nevatim airbase. "The inauguration of this parachuting zone presents a big opportunity for improvement in the parachuting training in the IDF. But beyond that, it gives the army more avenues for tightening the cooperation between ground forces and the IAF".

 

"It's so relevant"

 

The inauguration began with a flyover of Hercules C-130 planes that flew from the horizon towards the guests attending the ceremony. On board were Infantry and Paratrooper Officer Chief, Brigadier General Itai Virov and Brigadier General Amir Baram, the "Fire Division" Commander. Together with additional paratroopers, they demonstrated a parachuting in the new parachuting zone.

Afterwards, Red Brigade paratroopers and the parachuting course instructors jumped, providing the audience with an image of the future of the landing strip and the tightening relations.

 

"The use of parachuting seems archaic to quite a few people and that's why it's so relevant", said Brigadier General Virov. "The use of parachuting capabilities will be a surprise in terms of place, time and technique. I think that we are building together a tool that has the ability to produce the next surprise or the next decision".

 

The purpose of the move is to shorten the flight path of parachuting planes: until now, the Hercules C-130 planes left their home base at Nevatim, picked the paratroopers up at the Tel Nof airbase, which is next to the Flying and Special Training Center, airdropped them at the parachuting zone in Palmachim and returned to Nevatim. The new parachuting zone will shorten the journey and, in so doing, save money on future training costs.

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18 mars 2014 2 18 /03 /mars /2014 17:30
Cooperation On The Southern Front

 

17.03.2014 Noa Fenigstein - IAF

 

Last week, aircrews from the "Desert Birds" squadron operating "Blackhawk" helicopters met with the Division handling Gaza Strip and discussed continued cooperation between the two sides on the volatile southern front. "The cooperation during the fighting would be better if we knew each other personally"

 

The "Knights of Round Table" were the military aides of King Arthur. The armor-wearing heroes sat around the round table and made decisions together with trust and equality.

 

Last week, aircrews from the "Desert Birds" squadron and the Gaza strip Division sat down together, in the tradition of the "Knights of the Round Table" and discussed tightening cooperation between both sides on the southern front.

 

The home of the "Desert Birds" is Hatzerim airbase and it is often called to missions on the border of the Gaza Strip with the Gaza Division. "Because we are a southern transport-helicopter squadron, the relationship with the Gaza Division forces includes daily interactions", explains Captain Itzik, a pilot in the "Desert Birds" squadron. "We feel that cooperation during fighting periods would be better if we knew each other personally".

"Usually, the Cooperation Unit of the IAF mediates between ground forces and helicopters squadrons", he adds. "But for the first time, we decided to establish direct contact. We received an intelligence briefing, talked about future cooperation and concentrated on lessons from recent events, face-to-face".

 

True Friendship

 

The cooperation between the Gaza Division and the "Desert Birds" squadron is extensive and its objectives diverse: from casualty evacuation to transporting combat forces to secret missions that cannot be disclosed. Recently, the two sides began cooperating on" surprise exercises", in which the participants had to execute missions under the psychological pressures at the moment of truth.

The squadron and the Division look forward to future cooperation. "Roundtable Discussions represent a change in communication between us", adds Captain Itzik. "Now that we plan together, there is a push to improve the process and not just the mission".

Cooperation On The Southern Front
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18 mars 2014 2 18 /03 /mars /2014 12:30
F-16I photo  Guy Ashash

F-16I photo Guy Ashash

 

25.02.2014 Shir Cohen - iaf.org.il

 

Ten years ago, the first F-16I fighters landed in Israel in their new home at the "Negev" squadron in Ramon Airbase. Last week, the aircrews that greeted the first F-16I upon their arrival ten years ago, gathered at Ramon airbase and reenacted the first flight

 

Despite the inclement weather outside, February 19th, 2004 was a day of great significance for the IAF. Two new F-16I fighter planes landed at Ramon airbase and began a new era for the force.

 

Last week, the participants of the event in 2004 gathered at the exact same spot to mark the decade anniversary of the advanced aircrafts. The participants included generations of aircrews from the "Negev" squadron, people involved in the F-16I squadrons and Brigadier General Amikam Norkin, the Head of Air Division, who at the time served as commander of the first F-16I squadron.

 

The highlight of the day was the reenactment of the first flights of the planes: two of the original planes met the aircrews that had flown them that winter day in February 2004.Lieutenant Colonel Amir, commander of the squadron, said at the end of the busy day: "There is excellent synergy among all the F-16I squadrons that you can clearly see that that is the way the founders of the division had intended it to be".

 

In addition to the reenactment flights, the soldiers of the squadron also gathered to preserve the tradition of F-16I in the IAF and held a special quiz on the operations of the past decade. "Looking back at our heritage is of tremendous importance", said Lieutenant Colonel Amir in his speech at the event. "However, we need to continue developing and leading, as well as learning from others and working as one with our sister squadrons".

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18 mars 2014 2 18 /03 /mars /2014 12:30
New Training Center

 

 

19.02.2014 Shani Pomes - IAF

 

The Heavy Transport Division's new training center opens at the Nevatim airbase. The new center will train and instruct aircrews from the division, which is comprised of four different types of aircrafts and dozens of missions. The vision: a full squadron of heavy transport simulators

 

Nevatim airbase, located in the Negev, inaugurated a new training center for the IAF's Heavy Transport Division, which will be responsible for training from the basics to qualification maintenance.

The division currently consists of different squadrons: the "Hercules C-130" squadron, the "Boeing 707" squadron, the "Gulfstream" squadron and the soon-to-be operational "Hercules C-130J" squadron.

Yet, despite their numbers, until now there has not been a single body that concentrated the training and each squadron had to take care of its aircrews without professional assistance.

"The reason the Heavy Transport Division didn't have a training center until now was that the simulators were located abroad, outside of Israel", explains Colonel P', Head of the Training Department. "Over time, we realized that in order to operate with the correct training culture we were aiming for, we need to have a training center that would handle these issues".

 

"Pure training center"

 

The missions of the Heavy Transport Division are quite varied and as such, the new training center will have to provide an instructional, diverse and satisfactory response. To this end, a research and development section was established within the training center: a section comprised of non-commissioned officers and multimedia producers who will be responsible for the design of the training.

"Until the summer, the first aircrews will complete the construction of the work plan and starting in the summer, the center will begin working with a premade work plan. Every section of the division will start enjoying the achievements of the center and will take part in the training process", said Lieutenant Colonel Eitan, commander of the "Desert Giants" squadron which operates "Boeing 707". "This site is a pure training center, which will provide a solution to all relevant squadrons".

 

Coming Soon: A Training Squadron

 

The inauguration of the center is actually the first step among many in a long-term process of developing the instructional training in the Heavy Transport Division.

"This is only the beginning. We envision this center being part of a training squadron", adds Lieutenant Colonel Eitan.

"Even though, we currently don't have any simulators, this center is looking a few years ahead. I hope that in the future we'll see upgraded Hercules C-130 and Hercules C-130J simulators, maybe someday even a "Boeing 707" aerial refueling simulator", said Brigadier General Lihu Hacohen, commander of the Nevatim airbase. "At the end of the day, this professional training will put us, as a division, in a much better place".

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18 mars 2014 2 18 /03 /mars /2014 08:50
USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon - Lask Air Base - Poland

USAF F-16 Fighting Falcon - Lask Air Base - Poland

 

17.03.2014 Helen Chachaty journal-aviation.com

 

Les États-Unis ont envoyé une douzaine de chasseurs F-16 et quelques 200 militaires en Pologne ce weekend, dans le cadre d’un exercice bilatéral, mais également en raison de la situation politique relativement tendue en Ukraine.

 

Les avions du 555th Fighter Squadron et du personnel du 31st Fighter Wing de l’US Air Force ainsi qu’un C-130 Hercules ont été transférés de la base aérienne d’Aviano en Italie vers la base polonaise de Lask les 14 et 15 mars derniers. Il s’agit de renforcer ponctuellement le détachement aérien américain de la base, composé de dix militaires, qui effectue des rotations régulières depuis novembre 2012, mais aussi de « démontrer l’implication américaine et sa responsabilité de défense collective selon les objectifs fixés par l’OTAN », selon le communiqué diffusé par l’USAF.

 

De plus, le porte-avions USS George H.W. Bush restera en Méditerranée « quelques jours de plus » que ce qui était initialement prévu, afin de « poursuivre son entraînement et l’amélioration des capacités maritimes dans la région ». Le porte-parole du Pentagone a également parlé d’une décision destinée à « rassurer » les alliés.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 17:35
IAF transforming into strategic power: Chief

 

Mar 15, 2014 brahmand.com

 

KOLKATA (PTI): Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha Friday said that the IAF was poised to transform into a strategic aerospace power with the ongoing modernisation.

 

"IAF (Indian Air Force) is on a trajectory of modernisation and is transforming into a strategic aerospace power with full spectrum capability," said ACM Raha in his address to the personnel at Kalaikunda airbase in West Bengal.

 

He also urged all personnel to display exemplary leadership in pursuit of excellence.

 

Accompanied by wife Lily, Raha is on a four-day official visit in West Bengal to various defence establishments since Thursday.

 

At Kalaikunda, the air force chief also reviewed various measures being undertaken by the station towards operational commitments.

 

He also visited No 18 squadron and flew in a MiG-27 trainer aircraft with Gp Capt Ashish Rana, Commanding Officer of the squadron.

 

Earlier upon arrival at Kolkata he had called on Governor M K Narayanan at Raj Bhavan. He was scheduled to visit the Eastern Command's headquarter in Kolkata Saturday.

 

Raha also kept his promised date with his alma mater, Sainik School in Purulia, where he had studied from 1965 to 1970.

 

Addressing cadets of the school, he said it was a special pleasure to revisit it within three months since taking over as the Air Chief.

 

Talking to media-persons at Purulia, he described Sainik Schools as being among the best public schools that are building foundations for future leaders of our country.

 

"The Air Chief's visit has certainly overwhelmed the cadets who see him as their role model. This will not only motivate the cadets to aspire for a career in the Defence but will also boost the parents to encourage their children to become officers in the Armed Forces of the country," Principal Col B S Ghorpade said.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 17:35
AUS: Minister applauds $901 million Wedgetail sustainment contract


17.03.2014 Pacific Sentinel
 

Minister for Defence Senator David Johnston says a $901 million dollar Wedgetail Airborne Early Warning and Control support contract unveiled today spells job security for hundreds of Australian workers.

 

Senator Johnston said the support contract extension, signed by the Defence Materiel Organisation, will be undertaken by Boeing Defence Australia and will ensure long-term value for money sustainment services for Defence.

 

The contract covers the sustainment of the Royal Australian Air Force’s E-7A Wedgetail fleet, including engineering and maintenance support, repairs, spare parts and aircrew and maintenance training for the Wedgetail fleet.

 

 

“The extension ensures efficient and cost-effective sustainment support, and is also testament to the effective build-up by Australian industry of E-7A Wedgetail operating, maintaining and engineering knowledge,” Senator Johnston said.

 

“This is a significant outcome for the Wedgetail program and for the 290 industry staff employed directly on Wedgetail support in the Newcastle, Brisbane/Ipswich and Adelaide regions.

 

“Extending this contract maintains Australian industry’s involvement and leadership in the sustainment of the Wedgetail capability.”

 

The E-7A Wedgetail represents an advanced and entirely new capability for the Australian Defence Force, providing a platform that gathers information from a wide variety of sources analyses it and distributes it to other aircraft and surface assets.

 

Of the $901 million, $433 million is being spent in Australia, $275m in Newcastle, $80m for Brisbane and Ipswich and $78m for Adelaide.

 

The Airborne Early Warning and Control capability operated by 2 Squadron at RAAF Williamtown consists of six E-7A Wedgetail aircraft, a full flight simulator, an operational mission simulator, a software development and test laboratory and maintenance facilities.

 

AUS DoD

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 16:55
photos Armée de l'Air

photos Armée de l'Air

 

 

17.03.2014 Helen Chachaty journal-aviation.com

 

Alors que le premier A400M livré à l’armée de l’air se trouve actuellement en visite de maintenance, son petit frère, MSN8 a effectué le 11 mars sa première traversée transatlantique, dans le cadre des campagnes d’expérimentation de la MEST (Multinational Entry into Service Tram). Parti de la BA 123 d’Orléans-Bricy, il a rallié la BA 125 d’Istres, puis l’aéroport de Sal au Cap Vert, afin de se diriger vers la BA 367 de Cayenne, en Guyane, avant de faire le trajet retour avec un détour par Fort de France en Martinique.

 

11 mars, BA 123 Orléans-Bricy, 7h du matin. C’est dans le brouillard matinal que le Ville de Toulouse se prépare à son grand voyage. Le décollage a lieu aux alentours de 8 heure, pour un premier « saut de puce », une escale de quatre heures à la BA 125 d’Istres, afin d’y charger un hélicoptère Fennec destiné aux missions de protection aérienne du centre spatial guyanais de Kourou, ainsi que du fret supplémentaire. L’opération de chargement, une première pour l’A400M, va durer une bonne heure, le temps pour les loadmasters de calibrer les rampes de chargement et de vérifier que la manœuvre pourra s’effectuer de manière optimale. L’ensemble des étapes, les données chiffrées et techniques sont consignées sur une fiche de chargement, afin de servir de base de référence pour les futurs chargements de Fennec.

 

« La difficulté n’était pas de charger le Fennec à l’intérieur de l’avion, mais de trouver le bon arrimage pour pouvoir être dans les normes que nous imposent le transport et les limitations de l’A400M », explique le major Franck Girard, loadmaster. Car si l’emplacement des chaînes d’arrimage est fixé en ce qui concerne l’hélicoptère, il faut en revanche effectuer un calcul pour chaque chaîne en fonction du poids qu’elle peut supporter avec la fixation au sol, qui elle n’est pas définie.

 

L’hélicoptère est treuillé dans l’avion, qui pourrait même en accueillir un deuxième. « A côté d’un Transall ou d’un C-130, c’est le paradis », selon un des militaires chargé de la manœuvre. La capacité de chargement de l’A400M laisse, il est vrai, de la place pour de la cargaison supplémentaire.

 

A 13h30, MSN8 est prêt à re-décoller, chargé du Fennec et de 2,1 tonnes de matériel. Direction l’aéroport de Sal, au Cap Vert, ultime arrêt avant le « grand saut ». Après six heures de vol, l’A400M se pose au crépuscule sur le petit aéroport de l’île située à l’ouest du Sénégal. Le temps de faire le plein et d’exécuter les formalités administratives de rigueur, l’équipage prend l’air et en profite pour se dégourdir les jambes.

 

A 21h, l’A400M prend la direction de Cayenne, pour un vol de 5 heures et 32 minutes. L’arrivée sur la BA 367 « Capitaine François Massé » vers 22h30 heure locale (2h30 heure de Paris) signe l’accomplissement de la première traversée de l’océan Atlantique d’un A400M français. « Tout s’est très bien passé », selon le lieutenant-colonel François Brun, commandant de bord sur A400M, pour qui l’avion a rempli toutes les exigences. Le Ville de Toulouse a atteint les 800km/h et les 32 000 pieds.

 

La traversée permet une fois de plus de constater le gain de temps certain par rapport aux avions de transport actuellement en service. « On ne fait pas la traversée avec un Transall, on se serait arrêté à l’aéroport du Cap Vert, mais Cap Vert-Cayenne ça ne passe pas, donc on aurait fait un arrêt supplémentaire au Brésil », précise le LCL Brun. Un bon point pour ce nouvel avion de transport tactique et stratégique, qui permettra à l’armée de l’air d’acheminer troupes et matériels beaucoup plus rapidement qu’actuellement.

 

Le déchargement de l’hélicoptère Fennec et du fret s’effectue le lendemain sur la base aérienne de Cayenne. L’opération est également consignée dans les moindres détails, l’espacement des rampes calculé au centimètre près. Une fois l’avion vidé, il est à nouveau chargé, emportant à nouveau du fret et un hélicoptère Fennec pour le retour en métropole.

 

MSN8 décolle le 13 mars de la base aérienne 367 pour rallier Fort de France en Martinique en 2 heures et 15 minutes. Le lendemain a lieu la seconde traversée transatlantique afin de retourner en métropole. L’A400M relie Fort de France à la BA d’Istres en 10 heures et 23 minutes, du roulage à l’arrêt des moteurs. C’est le vol le plus long sans escale de l’A400M français à ce stade des expérimentations et la capacité de ravitaillement en vol - qui n’est pas attendue avant fin 2015 - permettra d’allonger encore plus considérablement les capacités de l’avion. Après ce vol de nuit, l’hélicoptère et le fret embarqués à Cayenne sont déchargés en un temps record. MSN8 peut enfin rejoindre sa base à Orléans, signant ainsi la fin de la campagne d’expérimentation.

 

« L’ensemble de la mission s’est très bien passé » pour le capitaine Alexandre Jaubertie, NOSA (Navigateur officier systèmes d’armes) au sein de la MEST. « Avec un vent pas forcément favorable, on n’était pas loin des limites d’endurance de l’avion, c’est pour cette raison qu’on a dû prendre le temps de bien affiner les réserves d’essence avant le départ », précise-t-il. L’ensemble de la mission a permis de valider les points d’expérimentation et les comptes-rendus vont à présent être envoyés au CEAM pour alimenter les banques de données sur l’avion.

 

Prochaine expérimentation, une mission en Norvège, prévue normalement pour cette semaine.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 16:40
Moscou autorise l'Ukraine à effectuer un vol d'inspection

 

MOSCOU, 17 mars - RIA Novosti

 

La Russie a autorisé les inspecteurs ukrainiens à survoler son territoire en application du Document de Vienne sur les mesures de confiance et de sécurité conclu en 2011, a annoncé lundi aux journalistes le vice-ministre russe de la Défense Anatoli Antonov.

 

"Compte tenu de notre attachement à nos engagements internationaux pris dans le cadre du Document de Vienne, nous avons accepté  d'accueillir sur notre territoire le groupe d'inspecteurs ukrainiens", a indiqué le responsable.

 

Lors du vol en question, les Ukrainiens pourront inspecter les régions de Koursk et de Belgorod, frontalières avec leur pays, pour s'assurer que la Russie ne mène dans les zones indiqués d'activité militaire susceptible de représenter une menace pour la sécurité de leur pays.

 

L'Ukraine a transmis par le biais de l'OSCE une requête visant à survoler les régions en question entre le 15 et le 18 mars.

 

Au cours de cette semaine, le territoire russe sera en outre inspecté par des inspecteurs allemands et américains en application du Traité international Ciel ouvert.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 16:35
 AUS: Triton Acquisition Announced


17 March 2014 Pacific Sentinel
 

The Prime Minister of Australia The Honourable Tony Abbott MP visited RAAF Base Edinburgh recently to announce the Government has committed to the acquisition of the Triton Unmanned Aircaft System (UAS), subject to the successful completion of the US Navy development programme currently under way.

 

The MQ-4C Triton UAS is an unarmed maritime variant of Northrop-Grumman’s Global Hawk. The aircraft will be based and piloted from RAAF Base Edinburgh and capable of supporting missions of greater than 24 hours while covering an area of over one million square nautical miles; an area larger than Western Australia Triton will patrol Australia’s vast ocean approaches, protecting offshore resources, supporting other Australian Defence Force assets and helping to secure our borders. Triton is purpose-built for the maritime environment, and includes a strengthened airframe, de-icing capability, hail and bird-strike protection, and has sealed avionics and sensor compartments and environmental countermeasures to enable all-weather operations. The Triton has been under development by the United States Navy (USN) since 2008 and is scheduled to achieve Initial Operational Capability with the USN in 2017. The total number of Triton aircraft to be acquired by Australia and their introduction into service date will be further considered by Government in 2016, based on the Defence White Paper.

 

RAAF

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 15:45
French air strikes kill wanted Islamist militant 'Red Beard' in Mali (14 march)

 

 

14 March 2014 defenceWeb (Reuters)

 

French air strikes in the mountains of northern Mali have killed Islamist militant Oumar Ould Hamaha, a jihadist with a $3 million U.S. government bounty on his head, a Malian military source said on Friday.

 

Hamaha, known as 'Red Beard' because of his henna-dyed whiskers, became a leading figure in the Islamist coalition that seized control of northern Mali in April 2012 after drifting among armed Muslim groups in the Sahara over the last decade.

 

A French-led military offensive launched in January 2013 broke the grip of the al Qaeda-linked militants over northern Mali, but small pockets of Islamists have continued to operate in the vast desert region.

 

The Malian military source said Hamaha was reported killed in the Tigharghar mountains in northeastern Mali near the remote town of Kidal.

 

"This is what intelligence services told us yesterday. He was killed by French air strikes in the Tigharghar," the source said.

 

Hamaha was a long-standing member of al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the group's North African arm, and a close associate of veteran Algerian jihadist Mokhtar Belmokhtar.

 

According to the bounty offered under the U.S. State Department's 'Rewards for Justice' program, Hamaha had participated in the kidnapping and ransom of several foreigners, including Canadian diplomat Robert Fowler from Niger in 2008.

 

During the Islamists' 10-month rule over northern Mali, Hamaha became a spokesman for the Movement for Unity and Jihad in the Islamic Maghreb (MUJWA) that imposed strict sharia law in his hometown of Timbuktu. Militants there cut the hands off thieves and flogged women for dressing immodestly.

 

He vocally defended the Islamists' destruction of the ancient caravan town's historic mausoleums, sacred to followers of Sufi Islam and part of a UNESCO World Heritage site.

 

France is winding down its troop presence in Mali as a 12,000-strong U.N. mission slowly comes up to full strength.

 

Paris still has about 1,600 troops in Mali trying to mop up Islamist cells in the north. It has said it will redeploy its forces across the region to counter Islamist militancy.

 

Paris said last week its forces had killed 10 suspected Islamist fighters in the northern Adrar des Ifoghas mountains, after the group was spotted by a U.S.-made Reaper surveillance drone acquired by the French military last year.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 14:50
F-35 : l'Italie envisage de réduire à nouveau sa commande

L'Italie prévoit de réduire son budget de la défense de trois milliards d'euros sur les trois prochaines années, un plan d'économies qui pourrait passer par la révision de programmes d'envergure comme l'acquisition de F-35

 

17/03/2014 Michel Cabirol – LaTribune.fr

 

Rome pourrait revoir à la baisse sa commande de 90 avions de chasse F-35. Elle avait déjà été réduite de 131 à 90 appareils.

 

L'Italie pourrait revoir à la baisse sa commande de 90 avions de chasse F-35, fabriqués par le groupe américain Lockheed Martin, dans le cadre d'un vaste programme de réduction de sa dépense publique, a déclaré le président du Conseil Matteo Renzi. L'Italie prévoit de réduire son budget de la défense de trois milliards d'euros sur les trois prochaines années, un plan d'économies qui se traduira par la fermeture de casernes mais aussi par la révision de programmes d'envergure comme l'acquisition de F-35, dont le coût du programme a explosé.

"Nous maintiendrons nos programmes internationaux et nous continuerons à avoir une force aérienne solide mais ce programme sera révisé", a annoncé dimanche le nouveau chef du gouvernement italien sur la chaîne de télévision Canale 5.

 

11,8 milliards d'euros sur 45 ans

La commande de F-35, d'un coût initialement estimée à 11,8 milliards d'euros sur 45 ans à partir de 2015, fait l'objet d'une incertitude prolongée, les gouvernements successifs étant tous confrontés à la nécessité de remettre de l'ordre dans les finances publiques. Pour exemple, ce programme coûtera au contribuable américain au moins 1.500 milliards de dollars (1.160 milliards d'euros) sur un cycle de vie d'un demi-siècle, a dû reconnaître en 2012 le Pentagone.

La commande a déjà été réduite de 131 à 90 appareils mais nombreux sont ceux, au sein du Parti démocrate de Matteo Renzi comme dans l'opposition, qui souhaitent aller plus loin, voire renoncer carrément au programme.

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17 mars 2014 1 17 /03 /mars /2014 13:50
Czech Republic to sign new Gripen lease agreement next month

A pair of Czech Air Force's JAS 39 Gripen C/D multi-role combat in flight. Photo: courtesy of Milan Nykodym.

 

17 March 2014 airforce-technology.com

 

The Czech Republic Government has approved an agreement for the country's lease of 14 JAS 39 Gripen C/D multi-role combat aircraft.

 

Scheduled to be signed by the Swedish Defence and Security Export Agency (FXM) and the Czech Defence Ministry nexth month, following internal processes, the agreement will enable the country to continue to fly Gripen, at least until 2026.

 

FXM director general Ulf Hammarstrom said the agreement has been a long, tough process and often involved very intensive negotiations.

 

"It is an agreement that is to the advantage of both parties and helps promote cost-efficiency for the Air Forces of both Sweden and the Czech Republic," Hammarstrom said.

 

In addition to the lease of 14 Gripen C/D fighters for a period of 12 years, the agreement also covers training and upgrade of the aircraft, and the necessary logistical and operational support needed to deploy the aircraft.

 

FMV signed the first CZK19.6bn ($1bn) ten-year agreement with the Czech Republic on 14 JAS 39 Gripen C/D aircraft in 2004, making the country the first Nato member to fly the Gripen.

 

Powered by a single Volvo-Flygmotor RM12 engine, the JAS 39 Gripen is a lightweight, multirole fighter aircraft designed to conduct a wide range of air-to-air, air-to-surface and reconnaissance missions.

 

The aircraft first entered into operational service with the Swedish Air Force in 1997, and is also in use with the South African and Hungarian air forces.

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16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 14:40
La Russie envoie un avion de reconnaissance A-50 en Biélorussie

 

MINSK, 15 mars - RIA Novosti

 

La Russie a envoyé un avion de reconnaissance radar Iliouchine A-50 en Biélorussie, a annoncé samedi à Minsk le ministère biélorusse de la Défense.

 

"Un avion-radar à long rayon d'action A-50 a été transféré à l'aérodrome biélorusse Baranovitchi pour renforcer le potentiel de la défense antiaérienne russo-biélorusse", a indiqué le ministère dans un communiqué.

 

Selon le ministère, les caractéristiques techniques de l'avion A-50 permettent d'élargir le potentiel de la reconnaissance radar, de mieux désigner les cibles pour les chasseurs biélorusses et russes et d'améliorer la gestion des forces opérationnelles du système conjoint russo-biélorusse de défense antiaérienne.

 

La Russie et la Biélorussie réalisent la deuxième étape d'une inspection destinée à tester le niveau de combat de l'Armée de l'air biélorusse et du système russo-biélorusse de défense antiaérienne, rappelle le ministère biélorusse.

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16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 13:50
Suisse : A l'unanimité, les officiers disent oui au Gripen

 

15.03.2014 arcinfo.ch (ATS)

 

Les officiers de l'armée suisse se sont exprimés en faveur de l'achat de Gripen. Ils ont également demandé un budget défense de 5 milliards de francs.

 

Les délégués de la Société Suisse des Officiers (SSO) ont voté samedi unanimement en faveur de la loi sur le fonds d'acquisition des Gripen. "Le peuple aura la possibilité le 18 mai de choisir le niveau de sécurité qu'il souhaite", indique le communiqué de la SSO.

 

"Depuis le début, la SSO a soutenu le remplacement de la flotte obsolète des Tiger, car une armée crédible est un système global qui doit disposer de moyens et d'équipements adaptés pour mener à bien sa mission constitutionnelle que lui a confiée le peuple", a déclaré le président de la SSO Denis Froidevaux.

 

Le financement choisi permet de réaffirmer les compétences de l'armée de l'air. De plus le recours à un fonds offre l'avantage de financer les Gripen par le budget ordinaire de l'armée sans devoir chercher un financement spécial qui obligerait à réaliser des économies dans d'autres départements, a ajouté M. Froidevaux.

 

L'assemblée, qui s'est déroulée en présence du ministre de la Défense, Ueli Maurer, et de son homologue suédoise, Karin Enström, a également réitéré son exigence de voir le budget militaire fixé à 5 milliards de francs dès 2016.

 

Le brigadier Froidevaux a rappelé les quatre critères non négociables pour la réforme de l'armée. Ce sont un effectif minimal de 100'000 hommes, un budget de 5 milliards, le principe d'une armée de milice et le respect de la mission de l'armée dans ses trois dimensions, terre-air-cyberspace.

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16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 12:20
The Rafale As Canada’s Next Fighter – Part 2

 

March 5, 2014. By Yves Pagot - Defence Watch Guest Writer

 

Editor’s note: As part of its ongoing coverage of the CF-18 fighter aircraft replacement, Defence Watch has published a number of articles from authors supporting various aircraft. This week Defence Watch will be running a three-part series that looks at the Rafale filling the role as Canada’s next fighter jet. It is written by Yves Pagot, PhD
ParisTech Institute, and a
reservist in Armée de l’Air. (i.e. reservist with the French Air Force, he is in a parachute unit). Pagot notes that he does not have any connection to Dassault or the firms involved in the Rafale production.

 

Factor 3 : Compatibility and Weapons Capacity.

As stated above, Rafale can carry any NATO standardized weapon (although some are not integrated yet for the French air force, there is no technical difficulty to it). Considering its “French ecosystem” as a requisite is a false opinion as stated above. It would be much more interesting to evaluate which original weapons Rafale would bring to CAF.

First, the Meteor missile is a Ramjet missile and the most modern, lethal, air-to-air weapon in the NATO arsenal. The upcoming AMRAAM missile latest version will have a near similar range (above 100 Kms), but with a much smaller No Escape Zone (NEZ). Missile manufacturer MBDA is also working on integrating the Meteor on the F-35 so there can be no incompatibility argument. The Rafale is one of the earliest adopters and will have it deployed ahead of the F-35 or Eurofighter Typhoon, which is only beginning testing this year.

Second, the MICA missile (Missile d’Interception et de Combat Aérien or interception and aerial combat missile). This missile has both IR and EM capabilities, and a unique IR Beyond Visual Range (BVR) capabilities which the Sidewinder 9X Blk2 is only trying to match. Its relatively small size and thrust vectoring make it a very agile missile, with a range of 500m to 65+ Km. It is a “fire and forget” missile with LOAL (Lock After Launch) and can be shot “over the shoulder” (rearwards). In 2010, MBDA stated a remarkable 93% successful shots out of 240 trials11. An over the shoulder fire of MICA on a target illuminated by a second Rafale (third party targeting) was demonstrated in 200724. MBDA is presently developing a Mica “NG” missile which, using the same body, that will offer more range, a dual boost engine dramatically increasing NEZ and even more precise seekers25. It should also bring a new datalink capability allowing a buddy plane to guide the missile independently from the shooting plane (presently it is needed to guide the missile via the shooting plane datalink)

Third, the AASM SBU38 (Smart Bomb Unit) “HAMMER.” Probably (although expensive) the most advanced NATO Air-to-Ground weapon-so much so, that it’s amazing capabilities saw NATO dub it “The Magic Weapon” during the Libyan conflict. The HAMMER is a kit added to Mk 82 250 Kg bombs consisting in a rocket propeller and a guiding system. The guidance system comprises INS/GPS, INS/GPS Laser or INS/GPS Infrared options. It has off-boresight capabilities (it can be shot at 50 Km from the target at medium altitude and 15 Km of the target during very low penetration flight). Using it, a Rafale is able to destroy six different ground targets across a wide area simultaneously. The HAMMER is advertised by its manufacturer in 125, 250, 500 and 1,000 Kg versions36.

Fourth, the SCALP/Storm Shadow Long Range Stand Off Munition (LRSOM) “cruise” missile. France’s Rafale is the first of the latest generation fighter jets to qualify and use this long-range cruise missile in combat. It was successfully deployed during the French Air Force’s “first-in” missions in Libya, taking out critical targets. The Typhoon is only commencing initial tests this year and from an interoperability perspective, it is also to be incorporated into the F-35 a number of years from now.51

Rafale can also come with Reco NG dual band reconnaissance pod (known as AEROS for export), allowing extremely sharp images to be transmitted in real time via a highly directional broadband datalink. It is capable of blending images from near IR and visible bands to create very high resolution 3D images, even from very long distances35.

Several other European weapons are qualified for the Rafale: Exocet antiship missile, ASMP-A nuclear ramjet missile (although this won’t be available for export, it demonstrates the capability of the plane to resist nuclear electromagnetic flash). The nuclear mission of the Rafale is a testimony to penetrate heavily defended enemy areas.

Finally, Rafale can be refueled using the “probe and drogue” method already used by RCAF, avoiding a costly adaptation of the CC150 Polaris refuellers. This technique was quoted in a US report to congress as more efficient for fighter refueling as it allows to refuel two planes simultaneously19. It is of note that the Rafale also has a “buddy-to-buddy” refueling capability, allowing it to perform even longer range missions in the absence of a refueller.

 

Factor 4 : Sensors and Situational Awareness

Apart from stealth (to be discussed further), the sensor suite and data fusion is described by Lockheed as one of the main features of the so called “5th Gen.” aircraft. And they are right – in a US context. Amongst “4th Gen.” US aircrafts, only the future (if ordered, otherwise the production line will shut down in 2016) FA/18 “Advanced” Super Hornet will feature a sensor fused display, as this is more or less a common feature to “Eurocanards”.

Aboard Rafale, data from all sensors, Radar, Front sector optronics (FSO), Electronic Warfare suite (SPECTRA), IFF (identify friend or foe), IR MICA missiles and datalinks are merged into a clear unified visual symbolism on situational awareness display9. This capability was highly praised in a recent test evaluation by Vianney Riller Jr, who has also flown latest versions of F-18 E/F and SAAB Gripen9. Besides all subsystems are virtualized and independent, the heart of the system is the MDPU (Modular Data Processing Unit), composed of 19 LRUs (line replacement units), each of them 50 times more powerful than previous generation aircraft computers. The architecture of the system allows flawless upgrade of processors, and a second bay is provisioned to receive another MDPU. This type of architecture also eases maintenance and upgrades of the whole combat system. The system is able to “create” tracks using fragmented data from several sensors.

Visualization can be integrated into the tactical head level display, an original feature with its screen collimated to infinite in order to prevent vision accommodation delays between the screen and the HUD/pilot outer vision. Virtually every sensor including “plugged ones” like a reconnaissance pod or Data sent from JTACs (Joint Tactical Air Controllers) will be fused in the tactical presentation given to the pilot.

 

On the subject of displays, Rafale is available with a fully-integrated helmet-mounted display developed by Thales, although the French forces have not ordered it as yet.53

 

Rafale’s sensor suite includes:
· RBE2 AA radar. It is a state-of-the-art AESA (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar composed of roughly 1,000 GaAs modules 12. It incorporates an original “cloud concept” architecture allowing future GaN made modules and conformal antennas to be added without changing the overall architecture of the radar14. With an average input power of 10 kW, it s described as very similar to F-18 E/F AN/APG 79 radar in terms of technology and maturity22. Although its exact range is classified, the “Centre d’Expériences Aériennes Militaires” (CEAM, the unit qualifying new materials), stated several times that the range was “doubled” as compared to the previous PESA radar. Dassault’s CEO, Eric Trappier, once stated “more than 200 Km.” It is able to track 40 planes or other targets and engage eight of them simultaneously within a 140° angular domain15. It features a “non cooperative” identification system and can generate high resolution Synthetic Aperture maps40 and comes with an automated supplementary follow-ground terrain mode.

· OSF-IT Front sensor optronics. The OSF posseses a powerful TV channel allowing the pilot to identify a target at more than 50 Km. This function is particularly useful, with very restrictive engagement rules. The system also features a laser telemeter.

· IFF (Identify Friend or Foe) the proposed version of Rafale (F3R) features latest IFF (mode 5/S);

· Three Laser Warning Receivers covering 360° around the plane, with angular location of laser emitter capabilities;

· Infrared Search and Track (IRST). This is accomplished through a combination of systems. Détecteur de Départ de Missiles Nouvelle Génération (“DDM NG” or new generation missile departure detector) comprises two “fish eye” passive imaging infrared detectors. These are more than just a missile approach warning system (MAWS). Their high level of accuracy for IR threat detection contributes to comprehensive situation awareness in a similar manner to F-35 EODAS9,16 with a 360-degree spherical coverage. In fact they are precise enough to be compatible with the future use of DIRCMs (Direct Infrared Counter Measures). The infrared versions of the MICA missiles are also integrated into the situational awareness picture providing a far IR channel together with or independent of the targeting pod. The MICA IR sensors provide full IR capability throughout the duration of the mission as the sensors do not rely on short-duration nitrogen canisters for cooling, as do most U.S. infrared missiles.

· Three Radar Warning Receivers. These three antennas (120° coverage each) are located on the tail fin base and canard roots. These systems use interferometry calculation methods in order to locate threats allowing a less than 1° accuracy and over a 200 Km range 15,17. This precision allows them to passively (without using active sensors) give firing solutions. During ATLC 2009, they were able to locate radars that had stayed unnoticed to a specialized aircraft configuration, F16 CJ20.

· The three latter sensors are part of the famous “SPECTRA” EW suite, which is also capable of self learning (and real time deeding its own threat databank) and ELINT/SIGINT tasks using recorders.

Factor 5 : Stealth and SPECTRA.

In the early’80 s, the DGA (French procurement agency) and Armée de l’Air started studied the self protection system of the future combat aircraft.

Future threat analysis as well as cost considerations (acquisition and maintenance) led to a compromise between high kinematic abilities and the different parries to theses threats.

· Preventive avoidance led to full spectrum signature reduction features, automatic very low altitude and very high-speed terrain following ground system and adaptation of pathways using a sophisticated mission preparation system.

· In-flight detection of threats and adapted course change, allowing real time adaptation of preventive avoidance.

· Avoidance by neutralization – jamming, decoying and ultimately destroying threats.

Whole Spectrum Signature reduction measures are obtained by several means, mostly classified, some documented. In the IR spectrum for example (heat detection), there is a supplementary cool air channel around the engine exhaust. In the radar spectrum, extensive use of composites (1/3rd of the plane mass, 70% of the wet surface (that is roughly to the same extent as the future Pak-Fa Russian fighter)), and RAM coatings, presence of serrated “saw-tooth” patterns on canards and wing trailing edges, as well as inside air intakes. Instead of deflecting incoming radar waves to an angle away from the emitter, they are channeled towards “spike” points heavily treated against reflection. Dassault engineers do not claim their plane to be “stealthy”, but very discreet or “sneaky.” All in all, the Rafale has a radar cross section reduction by 20 times compared to the Mirage 200015.

Avoidance of known threats is obtained either by mission planning (and the data will appear on the tactical display) or in real time, via Link 16 or detection by any of the plane sensors. In the latter cases, SPECTRA is able to propose actions vs. emerging threat, be it bypassing via recommending a new route to the pilot in order to avoid lethal areas (sophisticated enough to take into account the characteristics of the threat and topography), jamming, decoying or destroying the threat.

Here lies the origin of the SPECTRA concept, which most modern EW suites are only now emulating. Far from being a simple “situation Awareness” suite, SPECTRA is capable of offensive actions. It has 3 AESA highly directional jamming antennas allowing deception jamming. The possible types of jamming involved have been extensively discussed on the net and are highly classified. We know it uses a DRFM (Digital Radio Frequency Memory) chain and “intelligent” jamming instead of “brutal jamming”. False range targets, velocity gate pull-off, and narrow band Doppler noise created by using digital RF memory (DRFM) are the common coherent EA techniques which can be used effectively against LPI radars23. Simply put, it is able to feed enemy radar with wrong data about presence, location and number of planes. It acts as an illusionist instead of using noisy, blinding “projectors” (“broadband white noise jammers”). Furthermore, depending on conditions, SPECTRA is able to detect and localize potential threats accurately enough to allow a shooting without using active (detectable) sensors. Some interesting results nevertheless leaked to specialized press, here are some:

· While flying over Libyan air defenses (before the Libyan air defense system was suppressed by tomahawk salvo), Rafales planes “poofed” from enemy radars31.

· During NATO Mace XIII exercise in Slovakia, a Rafale B flew unmolested over a S300 radar (and was the only type engaged in the exercise able to do it)21

· During Joint warrior 2013-1 exercise, rumours say SPECTRA literally gave headaches to Eurofighter’s Captor M radar, preventing it from tracking visible and detectable Rafales.

· During his test flights in 2012, DefesaNet test pilot Vianney Riller Jr. could shoot, entirely relying on aircraft passive sensors, a plane attacking him in his 6 o’clock position from way over 10 NM. At the moment, as far as I know, Rafale is the only operational plane able to perform such a shot.

· In a 2011 technical presentation brochure at Le Bourget, “virtual stealth technology” is stated27.

SPECTRA is completely integrated to the airplane (and will react differently according to the plane configuration). This is a very important feature as the suite wasn’t added to the plane like a jamming pod would, but was designed for the plane as a coherent system (with exact radar behavious, IR signatures and loads in mind).

This advanced, integrated EW capability is another area where the Americans are actually playing catch-up. The Rafale is the only aircraft delivering this advanced combat capability on the market today. The Boeing EA-18G Growler, the electronic warfare variant of the F-18 Super Hornet, will only be getting this capability in a next generation external jamming pod from Raytheon on 2020. In order to have the air-to-air, air-to-ground AND EW capabilities at once, you need to fly both the SuperHornet and Growlers – two jets compared to one Rafale.48

In conclusion, instead of relying completely on a stealthy shape, Rafale relies on a smart avoidance system and highly sophisticated sensor suite, real time mission planning and top end AESA jammers. It is noticeable that in 2014, a Rafale demonstrator will fly with gallium-nitride (GaN) made SPECTRA antennas, a world first, demonstration the involvement of French state in constantly upgrading the aircraft. Again, this will be six years ahead of the Growler getting that capability and only promised on the F-35.48


Part 3 runs Friday morning.

1- http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/app-acq/stamgp-lamsmp/questevalfin-finquesteval-eng.html
2- http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/india-to-finalise-rafale-deal-this-fiscal-year-air-force-official-433663
3- http://blogs.ottawacitizen.com/2013/01/07/why-canada-should-buy-the-saab-jas39-gripen-e-next-generation-fighter/
4- http://www.senat.fr/rap/a13-158-8/a13-158-814.html
5- http://vanguardcanada.com/mission-satisfaction-rafale-offers-proven-capability/
6- http://www.rafalesolodisplay.com/la-demo-2013/
7- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/combat-ready-53125/
8- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/flight-test-dassault-rafale-rampant-rafale-334383/
9- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10893/Shooting-Down-an-Aggressor-on-My-Six–Vive-la-difference-/
10- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioTTnjxNc7o
11- http://www.ffaa.net/weapons/mica/mica_fr.htm
12- http://www.defense-aerospace.com/dae/sponsors/sponsor_rafale/img/fox3_11.pdf
13- http://wayback.archive.org/web/20071122095016/http://www.dassault-aviation.com/fileadmin/user_upload/redacteur/AUTRES_DOCS/Fox_three/Fox_Three_nr_8.pdf
14- http://www.textbooks.zinio.com/reader.jsp?issue=416132257&o=int&prev=si
15- AWST 7/5/1999 ; Vol 151 issue 1 p48
16- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/ddm_ng_ds.pdf
17- https://www.thalesgroup.com/en/content/spectra
18- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/le-rafale-f3r-sur-les-rails.html
19- http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL32910.pdf
20- http://secretdefense.blogs.liberation.fr/defense/2009/12/carton-plein-pour-le-rafale-lors-dexercices-aux-emirats.html
21- http://ultimaratio-blog.org/fr/archives/5749
22- Air&Cosmos 2150, Dec 5th , 2008
23- http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA456960
24- http://www.cesa.air.defense.gouv.fr/article.php3?id_article=309
25- Air et Cosmos 2355, April 19th , 2013 p. 28
26- http://www.marianne.net/blogsecretdefense/Libye-quand-un-Rafale-fait-les-35-heures_a296.html
27- https://www.dropbox.com/s/y9s7kezdf51vaij/specs%20rafale.jpg
28- http://theflyingmen.over-blog.com/t%C3%A9moignage-un-pilote-de-rafale-au-dessus-du-mali
29- http://theaviationist.com/2014/01/15/rafale-operate-uss-truman/
30- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
31- http://www.dassault-aviation.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2012/08/FoxThree_Fox15.pdf p.9.
32- https://www.dropbox.com/s/or11ml8j6ckyu5l/AvionJSFAnalysMd-Nrc080909-copie-1.jpg
33- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10379/Rafale-avanca-na-conquista-de-sucesso-comercial/
34- http://www.journal-aviation.com/actualites/25635-le-rafale-sort-l-artillerie-lourde#
35- http://img713.imageshack.us/img713/8652/recoq.jpg
36- http://www.safran-group.com/site-safran/defense/defense-aeronautique/systemes-d-armes/aasm/
37- AWST Jan 20th, 2014, p29
38- http://www.air-cosmos.com/defexpo-2014-uk/rafale-looks-to-the-future.html
39- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/visite-de-le-drian-au-merignac-des.html
40- https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BfeyRsCIUAAkADx.jpg
41- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
42- https://www.dropbox.com/s/v22glx28nisgvt6/DutchAirForceAssociation_Gripen_2009.pdf
43- http://www.military.com/features/0,15240,186349,00.html
44- http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2013/02/pentagon-downgrades-jet-specs/
45- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F11%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-1.html&langpair=fr|en
46- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F12%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-2.html&langpair=fr|en
47- http://www.airforcetimes.com/article/20140202/NEWS04/302020005/Air-Combat-Command-s-challenge-Buy-new-modernize-older-aircraft
48- AWST February 17, 2014, p42 « Fast and Furious : Pivot to Pacific propels the need for upgraded and agile electronic-warfare systems »
49- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=2
50- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=1
51- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/Storm-Shadow_ds.pdf
52- http://theaviationist.com/2014/02/04/f-35-needs-f-22-acc-says/
53- https://www.thalesgroup.com/sites/default/files/asset/document/G00974_TopSight_v3web.pdf

Repost 0
16 mars 2014 7 16 /03 /mars /2014 12:19
The Rafale As Canada’s Next Fighter – Part 1


March 5, 2014 By Yves Pagot Defence Watch Guest Writer

 

Editor’s note: As part of its ongoing coverage of the CF-18 fighter aircraft replacement, Defence Watch has published a number of articles from authors supporting various aircraft. This week Defence Watch will be running a three-part series that looks at the Rafale filling the role as Canada’s next fighter jet. It is written by Yves Pagot, PhD
ParisTech Institute, and a
reservist in Armée de l’Air. (i.e. reservist with the French Air Force, he is in a parachute unit). Pagot notes that he does not have any connection to Dassault or the firms involved in the Rafale production.



During the last months, three interesting articles were released on this blog about incoming replacement of Canada’s CF-18. One was touting Gripen as the right choice for Canada, the other questioning the value of the F-35 as a candidate for Canada’s new fighter and the third, waves the F-35 flag. Interestingly, all dismiss Dassault’s Rafale for the wrong reasons:

Firstly they said that Rafale is not compliant with many US weapons and operations; secondly that there is only one operator, and third, they continue to lump the Rafale into the “legacy” or “4th Gen.” arena. I would like to debunk these urban legends.

Rafale already use several several air-to-ground US-made weapons (GBU 12, 24, 49, as well as unguided weapons). More importantly, its weapon bus is fully compliant with NATO Stanag 3910/1553.

Therefore, there is no technical hurdle to integrate any NATO weaponry. Furthermore, during operation “Harmattan” in Libya (Canada called it Operation Mobile – later Operation Enduring Freedom under NATO), French armed forces used the Raytheon wireless system to integrate GBU 49s on their Rafale.

France isn’t involved in the F-35 program, therefore the French armed forces have no plan “B”. Considering the strategic willingness of France as a permanent member of UN Security Council (and the inclusion of the Rafale as a nuclear vector is this scheme), it will be maintained as a high-end aircraft.

Recently, many positive signs emerged indicating a probable quick conclusion to the long and complex MMRCA contract negotiations, in which India will buy 126 (+63 options) Rafales2. Already 1 billion euros has been provisioned in the French budget to implement the next F3R standard incoming in 2018 (contract announced the 10th January), and a fifth production tranche was announced18. All in all, the Rafale’s future looks quite bright.

What are Canadian operational requirements? They are detailed in the Request for Information document issued by the government1.

Although this document is way too long to be fully addressed here, six main missions are cited: Defensive Counter Air (DCA), Offensive Counter Air (OCA), Strategic Attack, Close Air Support, Land Strike, Tactical Support to Maritime operations (TASMO) and Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance.

Two main strategic situations emerge:

· Defense of sovereignty, be it in Air, -Land or Sea. For the sake of simplicity, I’ll include a strategic “hit back” (deep penetration) strategic capability here.

· Participation in offensive missions within a coalition.

Canada’s specific geography (huge size, remote areas and cold environment) dictates some of the plane characteristics:

· It must have a long range, persistence and reliability;

· In flight refueling is mandatory and buddy-to-buddy refueling desirable;

· Time-to-target considerations above long distances make supercruise capability very important;

· Dual engines for reliability offer resistance to the “goose factor” (ingestion of a bird by an engine) and resilience against combat damages;

· Due to the possible duration of missions, a twin-seater version is preferable.

I’ll use the very same order as was already used about Gripen aircraft at the previous Defence Watch postings3. I will emphasize Rafale advantages as pro and cons of other planes have already been extensively discussed already.

Factor 1 : Cost

Many incorrect price figures have been seen in press (including French press), but recently, the actual fly away official cost was released on the French Senate site4. These prices include VAT. For export, the fly away cost is 57.5M euros ($83M CAD) for the C variant and 61.9 Meuros for the B variant (twin-seater).

The Cost of Flight Per Hour (CFPH) was $19,000 CAD during war operations in Mali and should be lower during peace time5.

Dassault is ready to fully open the technology to Canada, even source codes, letting thus Canada to modify the plane as for their will. They stated that Canada would be able to fully produce the aircraft, and even that some of the Falcon production line could be moved to Canada5. This is an important point for sovereignty as Canada would be fully independent (if it wishes to) from French upgrades and decide by itself for the evolution of its planes.

Factor 2 : Performance:

Kinematics :

Rafale is operationally limited to Mach 1.8 (although it reached mach 2+ during qualification tests15) and 55,000 feet which is as good or more than most considered types. Its sunning agility demonstrated during air shows is due to its engines power and its ability to sustain 9g turns, and regularly hit more than 10g during display flights6. Furthermore, a Rafale, fully loaded with 6,000 liters of external fuel in three tanks, four air-to-air mica missiles and two SCALPs (1,300 kg heavy cruise missile) is able to maintain 5.5/6g sustained turn rate7,15.

Interestingly, Rafale was flown by several independent test pilots: Chris Yeo7, David M. North15, Pete Collins8 and Vianney Riller Jr. 9. All of them highly praised its kinematic capabilities and flawless FCS (Flight Control System), but to a common reader, the most convincing proof about the aircraft kinematic capabilities is certainly a recently leaked dogfight picture where one can see a Rafale chasing a F-22 in Basic Flight Manoeuvers10.

Powered by two Snecma M88 engines with 7.5T thrust (with afterburner) each, the Rafale is capable to climb up to 40,000ft. in under two minutes and power the aircraft with an incredible payload (see below). Pete Collins, Flight International test pilot, quoted its acceleration as “brutal,” giving a value of 30 Kts. -2 with one 1250L centerline tank. M88-4E, the last iteration of the engine, is composed of 21 inline replaceable modules for ease of maintenance. The high number of Tactical Air Cycles (4,000) between inspections results in excellent availability. This modularity and ability to do so much front line maintenance without the need for a test bench essentially means there is no concept of Mean Time Between Failures (MTBF) with the M88, so engines are basically never sent back for time-consuming depot level overhauls, further increasing availability.
 

Moreover, Rafale has a unique capability to automatically follow the ground using both numeric maps and SAR radar capabilities, limited at 100 feet, 540 Kts (and 5.5g)8.

Range and Supercruise:

Both are crucial capabilities for Canada considering the large size of Canadian territory. Range for obvious reason, supercruise in order to allow aircraft to reach operational zone quickly without using too much fuel. Rafale has a huge combat radius of 1,850 kms (+ loitering/fighting time) in air superiority configuration33 without refueling. Supercruise was achieved with six MICA air-to-air missiles at 1.4 Mach13.

Payload :

Rafale, with a 10 ton empty weight, can carry up to 24.5 tons fully-loaded (a world record rate for a fighter), on 14 hardpoints. Among these, five are wet/heavy weight points. This means that it is able to perform a variety of missions during a single flight from sea attack to ground attack, reconnaissance and air defense. Indeed, during the Advanced Tactical Leadership Course (ATLC) exercise in 2009, a “Red” Rafale shot six AASM “HAMMER” (air-to-ground ammunition) and three mica missiles on “Green” aircrafts in less than one minute. Recently Dassault aviation unveiled a configuration under test, with 3x2000L subsonic drop tanks, 6×250 Kg stand-off AASM bombs, 2 Meteor and 4 MICA missiles34. The FCS system is so sophisticated that it will automatically recognize loadings and adapt flight rules and limitations. This is a very important feature as the plane do not need to be reconfigured according to the mission.

1- http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/app-acq/stamgp-lamsmp/questevalfin-finquesteval-eng.html
2- http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/india-to-finalise-rafale-deal-this-fiscal-year-air-force-official-433663
3- http://blogs.ottawacitizen.com/2013/01/07/why-canada-should-buy-the-saab-jas39-gripen-e-next-generation-fighter/
4- http://www.senat.fr/rap/a13-158-8/a13-158-814.html
5- http://vanguardcanada.com/mission-satisfaction-rafale-offers-proven-capability/
6- http://www.rafalesolodisplay.com/la-demo-2013/
7- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/combat-ready-53125/
8- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/flight-test-dassault-rafale-rampant-rafale-334383/
9- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10893/Shooting-Down-an-Aggressor-on-My-Six–Vive-la-difference-/
10- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioTTnjxNc7o
11- http://www.ffaa.net/weapons/mica/mica_fr.htm
12- http://www.defense-aerospace.com/dae/sponsors/sponsor_rafale/img/fox3_11.pdf
13- http://wayback.archive.org/web/20071122095016/http://www.dassault-aviation.com/fileadmin/user_upload/redacteur/AUTRES_DOCS/Fox_three/Fox_Three_nr_8.pdf
14- http://www.textbooks.zinio.com/reader.jsp?issue=416132257&o=int&prev=si
15- AWST 7/5/1999 ; Vol 151 issue 1 p48
16- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/ddm_ng_ds.pdf
17- https://www.thalesgroup.com/en/content/spectra
18- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/le-rafale-f3r-sur-les-rails.html
19- http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL32910.pdf
20- http://secretdefense.blogs.liberation.fr/defense/2009/12/carton-plein-pour-le-rafale-lors-dexercices-aux-emirats.html
21- http://ultimaratio-blog.org/fr/archives/5749
22- Air&Cosmos 2150, Dec 5th , 2008
23- http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA456960
24- http://www.cesa.air.defense.gouv.fr/article.php3?id_article=309
25- Air et Cosmos 2355, April 19th , 2013 p. 28
26- http://www.marianne.net/blogsecretdefense/Libye-quand-un-Rafale-fait-les-35-heures_a296.html
27- https://www.dropbox.com/s/y9s7kezdf51vaij/specs%20rafale.jpg
28- http://theflyingmen.over-blog.com/t%C3%A9moignage-un-pilote-de-rafale-au-dessus-du-mali
29- http://theaviationist.com/2014/01/15/rafale-operate-uss-truman/
30- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
31- http://www.dassault-aviation.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2012/08/FoxThree_Fox15.pdf p.9.
32- https://www.dropbox.com/s/or11ml8j6ckyu5l/AvionJSFAnalysMd-Nrc080909-copie-1.jpg
33- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10379/Rafale-avanca-na-conquista-de-sucesso-comercial/
34- http://www.journal-aviation.com/actualites/25635-le-rafale-sort-l-artillerie-lourde#
35- http://img713.imageshack.us/img713/8652/recoq.jpg
36- http://www.safran-group.com/site-safran/defense/defense-aeronautique/systemes-d-armes/aasm/
37- AWST Jan 20th, 2014, p29
38- http://www.air-cosmos.com/defexpo-2014-uk/rafale-looks-to-the-future.html
39- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/visite-de-le-drian-au-merignac-des.html
40- https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BfeyRsCIUAAkADx.jpg
41- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
42- https://www.dropbox.com/s/v22glx28nisgvt6/DutchAirForceAssociation_Gripen_2009.pdf
43- http://www.military.com/features/0,15240,186349,00.html
44- http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2013/02/pentagon-downgrades-jet-specs/
45- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F11%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-1.html&langpair=fr|en
46- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F12%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-2.html&langpair=fr|en
47- http://www.airforcetimes.com/article/20140202/NEWS04/302020005/Air-Combat-Command-s-challenge-Buy-new-modernize-older-aircraft
48- AWST February 17, 2014, p42 « Fast and Furious : Pivot to Pacific propels the need for upgraded and agile electronic-warfare systems »
49- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=2
50- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=1
51- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/Storm-Shadow_ds.pdf
52- http://theaviationist.com/2014/02/04/f-35-needs-f-22-acc-says/
53- https://www.thalesgroup.com/sites/default/files/asset/document/G00974_TopSight_v3web.pdf

Repost 0
15 mars 2014 6 15 /03 /mars /2014 22:20
The Rafale As Canada’s Next Fighter – Part 3

 

March 7, 2014. David Pugliese - Defence Watch

 

Editor’s note: As part of its ongoing coverage of the CF-18 fighter aircraft replacement, Defence Watch has published a number of articles from authors supporting various aircraft. This week Defence Watch has been running a three-part series that looks at the Rafale filling the role as Canada’s next fighter jet. Below is the third and final part. It is written by Yves Pagot, PhD
ParisTech Institute, and a
 reservist in Armée de l’Air. (i.e. reservist with the French Air Force, he is in a parachute unit). Pagot notes that he does not have any connection to Dassault or the firms involved in the Rafale production.

 

By Yves Pagot
Defence Watch Guest Writer


Factor 6 Battle Proven
Quite understandably, Air Force operators tend to prefer aircraft that have shown their capabilities during war operations.

The Rafale was engaged in three main war theaters: Afghanistan, Libya and Mali. During Afghanistan, it operated numerous Reconnaissance or CAS (Close Air Support) missions within the coalition, demonstrating its excellent capability to co-operate with other NATO nations.

During the Libyan conflict, it was the “first in” plane, several days before suppression of Libyan defenses using massive tomahawk strikes, and used a large array of ammunition. During the first three months, Rafales accumulated 700 sorties for 3,800 flight hours, shot 182 AASM, 116 GBU and 10 SCALP. Some planes reached 35 hours of flight per week. The average availability during the conflict was 95%, with only three mechanics per plane26. In Libya, the Rafale demonstrated its versatility performing a whole range of missions – air interdiction, strike, reconnaissance, air dominance within a single mission.

Mali demonstrated another capability of the Rafale very relevant to Canada: Its capability to perform extremely long missions. The first mission (four Rafales) flew no less than 9h41mins over more than 6,000 km. Twenty Four bombs were delivered. There’s a very interesting report (in French) of this mission described by one of the pilots 28. The planes took off from St Dizier (North of France), bypassed Algeria, flew over Morocco and Mauritania, delivered their weapons over Mali and finally landed in Chad.

During these three operations, the Rafale demonstrated an excellent reliability in war operations, its versatility during a single mission (reconnaissance, air-to-air and air-to-ground) and full interoperability with other NATO nation aircrafts. It is noticeable that the Rafale is the only foreign fighter qualified to operate from US carriers29.

Another critical importance is understanding Canada’s needs which include, both an all-altitude air-to-air superiority aircraft and a very flexible air-to-ground fighter, with a complete EW, IRST and C4ISR capability in a networked environment. What is not mentioned in Canada is most of other nations looking at the F-35 are not buying it as their sole aircraft – why? They have determined the F-35 is not one-size fits all and they are maintaining a mixed fleet, mostly to ensure they have air-superiority because this was not an intended role for the F-35 as its name implies. It is a Joint Strike Fighter – a ground attack fighter. The U.S. has the F-22 as its air superiority aircraft and without it, “the F-35 fleet frankly will be irrelevant. The F-35 is not built as an air superiority platform. It needs the F-22,” said Gen. Michael Hostage, Chief of U.S. Air Force Air Combat Command.52 Both the UK Royal Air Force and Italian Air Force while acknowledging the air to ground capabilities of the F-35, are still keeping their Typhoons for the foreseeable future. “The JSF does not have a high-end air-to-air capability,” according to Col. Vito Cracas, commander of the air force’s 36th Fighter Wing We need to have both aircraft.” 49 Canada obviously doesn’t have another aircraft to complement the F-35, so the question remains as to why would we want to buy an expensive aircraft that can only do half the job, when a Rafale, with its advanced sensor and EW technology, agility and outstanding weapons capability can do all the missions?

Factor 7 : Growth Factor

The Rafale is a constantly evolving weapon system. Since the induction of the purely air-to-air first software standard F1 (a pre-series aimed at filling the gap caused by Marine Nationale retirement of antiquated Crusaders) in 2001 (operational in 2004), the program was much developed, and in a fully retrofitable way. The French air force received its F2 Rafales, with air to ground capabilities. The induction of F3 standard in 2009 brought nuclear and anti-ship capabilities.

The present standard is F3.3′, with some minor updates to come in 2015 for a F3.4 standard (terrain-following system improvement, crash-avoidance system, emergency-braking power management, MICA release)37. The contract for the next standard F3R was officially awarded the Jan 10th buy French MoD Jean-Yves Le Drian. F3R standard will see in 2018 the induction of METEOR missile and the full integration of laser guided HAMMER version, developments of the AESA radar, of the SPECTRA suite as well as a new designation pod, IFF mode 5/S and a new buddy-to-buddy refueling device. Again, the coherence of the evolutions should be noted, for example the AESA radar, with an extended range allowing the use of the METEOR missile full capabilities was inducted in a compatible time frame with the development of the missile38.

Several studies, known as “Plan d’ Etude Amont” are currently underway to further improve the Rafale capabilities in a F4 standard scheduled around 2023. Although the exact contour of this future evolution isn’t defined, known PEAs give a good idea of how the Rafale will evolve, ranging from enhancing radar and sensor performance even further, advancing the SPECTRA EW system ahead of new anticipated threats, and continued efforts to ensure the lowest possible RCS of the Rafale.

Hardly a futureless fighter as some tried to describe it. In fact, only now is the U.S. waking up to the fact that the evolutionary nature of the Rafale is a far better route than the lock-in path of physical stealth, according to Raytheon executive Michael Garcia, who recently said much of the U.S. defense community “has lost sight of reality” as to what stealth means. The “essence of stealth is that the Blue circles [for detection and weapon range] impact Red before Red can detect,” and that jamming, sensors and weapons affect that calculation … The level of RCS has not been improving … It is time-stamped with whatever date it came out of the factory.” 50

The most important lesson for prospective buyers of the Rafale, is in the ability of Rafale International (Dassault-Aviation, Thales and Snecma) to deliver these new capabilities throughout the aircraft’s life. Through the first three tranches (or blocks), all promised capabilities have been delivered on time and on budget, from the date of contracting by the French government. That is a record unmatched by any other fighter jet manufacturer.

Conclusion

All odds are that Canada may choose the Lockheed F-35 in a near future. However, cost escalation led the Canadian government to set up for a new, fair competition. The competitors are the F-35, a new advanced version of the F-18, the Eurofighter Typhoon, the SAAB Gripen (presently resigned) and the Dassault Rafale.

Canada needs on one side, a fighter able to defend its sovereignty in Air, Land and Sea. On the other hand, as recent history showed it, the chosen aircraft must be able to perform Air-to-Air and Air-to-Ground missions within a coalition.

In other words, the variety of missions the plane will have to perform point at a truly multirole airplane.

The huge size of the country and the limited number of aircrafts to be procured point at a long range and fast fighter, with a good payload and able to perform in cold conditions.

The possible crisis theaters point at good Air-to-Ground capabilities and ability to operate in hot environment, with a limited logistic footprint.

In every cases, it must be able to operate in a highly networked environment (be it NORAD or a coalition).

The aircraft is supposed to be used for 40 years, so it must have a good evolution potential. It must be affordable, with reasonable acquisition cost and furthermore controlled ownership costs. It is preferable for Canada to select an operational and combat proven aircraft.

In my sincere opinion, only the Rafale complies with all of these requirements.

 

1- http://www.tpsgc-pwgsc.gc.ca/app-acq/stamgp-lamsmp/questevalfin-finquesteval-eng.html
2- http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/india-to-finalise-rafale-deal-this-fiscal-year-air-force-official-433663
3- http://blogs.ottawacitizen.com/2013/01/07/why-canada-should-buy-the-saab-jas39-gripen-e-next-generation-fighter/
4- http://www.senat.fr/rap/a13-158-8/a13-158-814.html
5- http://vanguardcanada.com/mission-satisfaction-rafale-offers-proven-capability/
6- http://www.rafalesolodisplay.com/la-demo-2013/
7- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/combat-ready-53125/
8- http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/flight-test-dassault-rafale-rampant-rafale-334383/
9- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10893/Shooting-Down-an-Aggressor-on-My-Six–Vive-la-difference-/
10- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioTTnjxNc7o
11- http://www.ffaa.net/weapons/mica/mica_fr.htm
12- http://www.defense-aerospace.com/dae/sponsors/sponsor_rafale/img/fox3_11.pdf
13- http://wayback.archive.org/web/20071122095016/http://www.dassault-aviation.com/fileadmin/user_upload/redacteur/AUTRES_DOCS/Fox_three/Fox_Three_nr_8.pdf
14- http://www.textbooks.zinio.com/reader.jsp?issue=416132257&o=int&prev=si
15- AWST 7/5/1999 ; Vol 151 issue 1 p48
16- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/ddm_ng_ds.pdf
17- https://www.thalesgroup.com/en/content/spectra
18- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/le-rafale-f3r-sur-les-rails.html
19- http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL32910.pdf
20- http://secretdefense.blogs.liberation.fr/defense/2009/12/carton-plein-pour-le-rafale-lors-dexercices-aux-emirats.html
21- http://ultimaratio-blog.org/fr/archives/5749
22- Air&Cosmos 2150, Dec 5th , 2008
23- http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA456960
24- http://www.cesa.air.defense.gouv.fr/article.php3?id_article=309
25- Air et Cosmos 2355, April 19th , 2013 p. 28
26- http://www.marianne.net/blogsecretdefense/Libye-quand-un-Rafale-fait-les-35-heures_a296.html
27- https://www.dropbox.com/s/y9s7kezdf51vaij/specs%20rafale.jpg
28- http://theflyingmen.over-blog.com/t%C3%A9moignage-un-pilote-de-rafale-au-dessus-du-mali
29- http://theaviationist.com/2014/01/15/rafale-operate-uss-truman/
30- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
31- http://www.dassault-aviation.com/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/2012/08/FoxThree_Fox15.pdf p.9.
32- https://www.dropbox.com/s/or11ml8j6ckyu5l/AvionJSFAnalysMd-Nrc080909-copie-1.jpg
33- http://www.defesanet.com.br/rafale/noticia/10379/Rafale-avanca-na-conquista-de-sucesso-comercial/
34- http://www.journal-aviation.com/actualites/25635-le-rafale-sort-l-artillerie-lourde#
35- http://img713.imageshack.us/img713/8652/recoq.jpg
36- http://www.safran-group.com/site-safran/defense/defense-aeronautique/systemes-d-armes/aasm/
37- AWST Jan 20th, 2014, p29
38- http://www.air-cosmos.com/defexpo-2014-uk/rafale-looks-to-the-future.html
39- http://portail-aviation.blogspot.fr/2014/01/visite-de-le-drian-au-merignac-des.html
40- https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BfeyRsCIUAAkADx.jpg
41- http://www.letemps.ch/rw/Le_Temps/Quotidien/2012/02/13/Suisse/Textes/gripen.pdf
42- https://www.dropbox.com/s/v22glx28nisgvt6/DutchAirForceAssociation_Gripen_2009.pdf
43- http://www.military.com/features/0,15240,186349,00.html
44- http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2013/02/pentagon-downgrades-jet-specs/
45- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F11%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-1.html&langpair=fr|en
46- http://translate.google.com/translate?client=tmpg&hl=en&u=http%3A%2F%2Fportail-aviation.blogspot.fr%2F2013%2F12%2Ffurtif-vous-avez-dit-furtif-partie-2.html&langpair=fr|en
47- http://www.airforcetimes.com/article/20140202/NEWS04/302020005/Air-Combat-Command-s-challenge-Buy-new-modernize-older-aircraft
48- AWST February 17, 2014, p42 « Fast and Furious : Pivot to Pacific propels the need for upgraded and agile electronic-warfare systems »
49- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=2
50- http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/AW_11_25_2013_p41-638956.xml&p=1
51- http://www.mbda-systems.com/mediagallery/files/Storm-Shadow_ds.pdf
52- http://theaviationist.com/2014/02/04/f-35-needs-f-22-acc-says/
53- https://www.thalesgroup.com/sites/default/files/asset/document/G00974_TopSight_v3web.pdf

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15 mars 2014 6 15 /03 /mars /2014 17:35
Lawmakers press US to fund Taiwan fighter jets

 

 

Mar 14, 2014 ASDNews (AFP)

 

US lawmakers pressed Friday for a robust defense of Taiwan, voicing alarm over Pentagon plans to defund upgrades of the island's fighter jets as part of budget cuts.

 

Crossing party lines, members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee called for the United States to stand firm on protecting Taiwan and to ignore concerns by a rising China, which considers the self-governing democracy to be a province awaiting reunification.

 

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15 mars 2014 6 15 /03 /mars /2014 10:40
La Russie envoie des avions de combat à la Biélorussie pour une mission de combat conjointe

 

 

2014-03-14 xinhua

 

Moscou a déployé six avions de combat SU-27 et trois avions de transport militaire à la Biélorussie, dans ce qui apparaît comme une réaction à une activité accrue de l'OTAN près des frontières de la Biélorussie, a annoncé jeudi le ministère russe de la Défense.

 

"Les équipages des jets russes seront en mission de combat avec leurs collègues biélorusses, pour la reconnaissance aérienne et pour assurer la défense de l'espace aérien de l'Etat unifié russo-biélorussie", a indiqué un porte-parole du ministère, cité par l'agence Itar-Tass.

 

Un groupe de personnels techniques militaires de la zone militaire russe de l'ouest ont atterri à l'aéroport de Bobruisk, dans la région de Mogiliov, en Biélorussie, a-t-il précisé, ajoutant que l'initiative était conforme à un accord signé par les deux pays sur la défense conjointe de l'Etat unifié russo-biélorussie.

 

La confirmation côté russe a eu lieu quelques heures après que le ministère biélorusse de la Défense eut publié un communiqué sur le déploiement.

 

"Dans le cas d'accumulation de troupes dans les Etats voisins de la Biélorussie, il y aura des mesures adéquates en réponse sur le territoire", a expliqué le ministère de la Défense de Biélorussie.

 

Le président biélorusse Alexandre Loukachenko avait suggéré mercredi que la Russie déploie jusqu'à 15 avions dans son pays en réponse à l'activité accrue de l'OTAN près de la frontière biélorusse. 

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