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5 avril 2014 6 05 /04 /avril /2014 16:50
HMS Trenchant photo Royal Navy

HMS Trenchant photo Royal Navy


April 4, 2014 By Richardd Tomkins  (UPI)


British engineering company Babcock has received a four-year support services contract for naval electronic warfare systems.


Babcock of Britain is to provide in-service support for the Communications Electronic Support Measures system on Royal Navy Trafalgar-class submarines.


The company said the four-year Ministry of Defense contract for the CESM system, known as Eddystone, encompasses post-design services and support for supporting infrastructure ashore.


Work will include engineering support, integrated logistics support, obsolescence management, configuration management, help desk, stores management, and ensuring fully functional capability on the in-service platforms.


CESM is an electronic warfare system that supports intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance sensors systems.


“The Eddystone system remains at the forefront of CESM capability and this contract award demonstrates confidence in Babcock’s ability to support this key capability, delivering a very high system availability with the systems performing well while on mission,” said Babcock Integrated Systems & Support Group Director Charles John. “This together with our Type 23 Hammerhead CESM system underline our increasing capability to deliver and meet the customer’s requirements as a one stop shop.”


The engineering and technology company was the prime contractor for the design and development of the system.


A value for the contract was not disclosed.

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5 avril 2014 6 05 /04 /avril /2014 16:35
BAE Taranis UCAV At RAAF’s Woomera Airfield

Satellite imagery acquired by DigitalGlobe appears to show the BAE-built Taranis stealth UCAV at Australia’s RAAF Woomera Airfield.


April 5, 2014 offiziere.ch


BAE Systems, a British defense and aerospace company, revealed earlier in February that the Taranis unmanned combat air vehicle demonstrator successfully completed its maiden flight at an undisclosed test location in Australia back in August.


Read more

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5 avril 2014 6 05 /04 /avril /2014 14:50
Robot man to test protective equipment

'Porton Man' mannequin at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory in Porton Down [Picture: Crown copyright]


5 April 2014 Ministry of Defence


MOD has invested £1.1 million in a robotic mannequin that will test protective suits and equipment for the UK armed forces.


MOD’s newest recruit is named ‘Porton Man’ after the home of the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), at Porton Down in Wiltshire. Built using advanced lightweight materials developed for Formula One racing cars, he is able to walk, march, run, sit, kneel and can even lift his arms to sight a weapon like an infantry soldier.

More than a hundred sensors all over the robot’s body record data during tests, enabling scientists to carry out real-time analysis on equipment such as chemical and biological suits in a realistic but secure environment.

Jez Gibson-Harris is the Chief Executive Officer of i-bodi Technology in Buckinghamshire, the company that designed and built the mannequin. He said:

Our brief was to produce a lightweight robotic mannequin that had a wide range of movement and was easy to handle. Of course there were a number of challenges associated with this and one way we looked to tackle these challenges was through the use of Formula One technology.

Using the same concepts as those used in racing cars, we were able to produce very light but highly durable carbon composite body parts for the mannequin.

'Porton Man' mannequin
More than a hundred sensors all over 'Porton Man' enable scientists to carry out real-time analysis [Picture: Crown copyright]

Mannequins have been used by Dstl in the past, but this animatronic version is unique to the UK. Dstl is also the only laboratory in the world that can use chemical warfare agents to assess the effectiveness of complete clothing systems such as the chemical, biological and radiological suits used by UK armed forces.

The Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology, Philip Dunne, said:

This technology, designed by a British company, is enabling the UK to lead the way in this important testing. Increased investment in science and technology by MOD is not only enabling battle-winning and life-saving equipment to be developed, but also helping innovative companies like i-bodi Technology to develop cutting-edge capability.

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5 avril 2014 6 05 /04 /avril /2014 11:40
KRET to create avionics for a new high-speed helicopter


05.04.2014 by Rostec


The concern will present its best developments at HeliRussia-2014


The concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET) will present their best developments in the field of helicopter avionics at HeliRussia-2014, an international exhibition for the helicopter industry. The event is to take place May 22-24 at the Crocus Expo exhibition center in Moscow. The most important development KRET will present at the exhibition will be an avionics system for a new high-speed helicopter.


20 enterprises of KRET will participate in HeliRussia-2014, presenting their latest developments in helicopter avionics.


The main showpiece will be an avionics system for a new high-speed helicopter (KBO PSV) that is currently being developed in Russia. It is based on the principles of integrated modular avionics and features an open, adaptive architecture of the onboard computer system. Specialists worked on its design at the Ulyanovsk Engineering Design Bureau, which is part of KRET.

The onboard equipment is based on the principles of a glass cockpit, with dashboard indicators appearing on a high-resolution widescreen. This modern system informs pilots about the helicopter’s surroundings and issues critical flight warnings.

GPS and GLONASS systems help to determine the helicopter’s coordinates and support automatic and manual correction. The new system also provides visual surveillance of either the helicopter’s cargo compartment or passenger cabin.


The Ryazan State Instrument Plant (GRPZ), another enterprise of KRET, will present a modern system of intelligent video processing for optoelectronic observation and a sighting system for the Ka-52 strike helicopter. One of the main exhibits of the factory will be an indicator and targeting helmet. Lightweight, weighing than 2 kg, the helmet will be the most advanced and without equal in Russia.


The corporation Fazotron-NIIP will present the Crossbow (FH-01) multifunctional radar system for the Ka-52 military helicopter. The Saratov Design Bureau of Industrial Automation (KBPA), which specializes in the design and manufacture of helicopter control systems, will present a remote control navigation computer, which solves navigational issues and provides control of the helicopter in both automatic and manual modes.

A laser system for optical-electronic suppression, part of the President-S electronic warfare system created by experts at the Ekran Samara Research Institute, will have a distinct place at the exhibition. The laser system will provide individual protection against guided missiles with infrared homing devices from the Mi-28NE (Night Hunter) helicopter.


The concern Radio-Electronic Technologies (KRET) is the Russia’s largest center for defense and civilian instrumentation industries. Founded in 2009, KRET is part of the state corporation Rostec. It develops technology in the industries of electronic warfare (EW), avionics (electronic systems for aircraft), state identification systems, multipurpose instrumentation, electrical connectors and cable systems, various household appliances, and medical instruments. KRET, which includes 97 enterprises located in 28 constituent territories of the Russian Federation, employs more than 60,000 people. Its products can be found in more than 60 countries.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 21:20
Les Américains projettent d’assembler bientôt les satellites dans l’espace


4 avril 2014 par Jacques N. Godbout


Construire un satellite dans l’espace: rien de plus simple, envoyez les robots avec le matériel en orbite simple et le tour est joué, du moins si le projet Phoenix de la DARPA, une agence de la Défense américaine, se réalise.


À la Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA, «Agence pour les projets de recherche avancée de défense»), ils ne sont pas de simples rêveurs.

La DARPA, comme le savent les lecteurs de 45eNord.ca, est une agence du département de la Défense des États-Unis chargée de la recherche et développement des nouvelles technologies destinées à un usage militaire.

La DARPA a été à l’origine du développement de nombreuses technologies qui ont eu des conséquences considérables dans le monde entier dont notamment les réseaux informatiques (notamment l’ARPANET qui a fini par devenir Internet)

Aujourd’hui, dans le cadre de son nouveau programme Phoenix, qui a récemment terminé la phase 1 des essais, la DARPA est à totalement repenser la façon dont les États-Unis construisent et maintiennent leur flotte de satellites.

À l’avenir, des robots seront appelés à assembler les structures modulaires des satellites, appelées satlets, qui pèsent environ 6,6 kg et contiennent toutes les fonctionnalités du satellite comme l’alimentation en énergie, les contrôles et les capteurs .

Tout cela mis en orbite par le Payload Orbital Delivery (POD), un mécanisme standardisé conçu pour amener en orbite en toute sécurité une grande variété d’éléments comme les satellites de communication commerciaux et, à l’avenir, les satlets, les composantes des satellites qui pourront dorénavant être construits dans l’espace.

«La Phase 1 [des essais, ndlr] a non seulement démontré la faisabilité de nos outils robotiques techniques et d’assemblage, mais aussi validé le concept que nous pourrions construire de nouveaux satellites sur orbite en assemblant les satlets dans l’espace», a déclaré David Barnhart , directeur du programme de la DARPA , dans un communiqué, ajoutant «Ces succès pourraient éventuellement conduire à la capacité révolutionnaire de créer de nouveaux systèmes spatiaux en orbite vraiment évolutifs à une fraction des coûts actuels».

À l’heure actuelle, les satellites sont très coûteux, très longs à développer, et ils doivent être conçus pour pouvoir rester longtemps en orbite sans mises à niveau ou réparations, tous des facteurs ce qui détermine en fin de compte la taille, la complexité et le coût du satellite .

Les technologies développées par le programme Phoenix permettraient alors d’inspecter les satellites, de les entretenir, de les réparer, de remplacer un élément usé, et d’ajouter ou mettre à niveau les capacités[du satellite]», a déclaré Barnhart. «Ces capacités permettraient aux systèmes spatiaux d’avoir, pour la première fois, la flexibilité, l’accessibilité et la résilience», qu’ont les systèmes terrestres.

Pour la phase 2 de Phoenix, la DARPA a accordé huit contrats à des entreprises dont Busek, Honeybee Robotics et Oceaneering .

L’année dernière, la DARPA avait également annoncé une percée dans la technologie des satellites: un satellite gigantesque fait de plastique durable capable de couvrir 40 pour cent de la surface de la terre .

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 19:35
Mitsubishi F-2

Mitsubishi F-2


4 avril Par Edouard Pflimlin, chercheur associé à l’IRIS, et Yann ROZEC, diplomé d’IRIS Sup’


Le Japon a adopté mardi 1er avril de nouveaux principes concernant les exportations d’armes. La situation économique difficile du Japon et l’arrivée au pouvoir du conservateur Shinzo Abe avaient créé un contexte favorable à un éventuel assouplissement des règles encadrant sévèrement les exportations depuis cinquante ans. Désormais, le Japon pourra vendre des armes, y compris à l’ONU, afin de contribuer à la sécurité de ses intérêts et participer à des coopérations internationales (1). Les restrictions sont dorénavant réduites uniquement aux pays en guerre et ou sous embargo des Nations Unies.

Edictés en 1967, trois principes régissaient les exportations japonaises : aucune vente ne peut être destinée aux pays du bloc communiste, aux pays sous embargo du Conseil de Sécurité de l’ONU et aux pays en guerre(2). En 1976, le Collateral Policy Guideline déclare que le gouvernement du Japon « ne promouvra pas les exportations d’armes, quelle que soit la destination » (3). Dans les faits, il s’agissait d’une interdiction complète des exportations. Très contraignantes, ces règles ont été peu à peu remises en question.

A partir de 1983, le Japon a cependant accepté de livrer de la technologie de défense aux États-Unis seulement. La coopération industrielle et les possibilités d’exportation vers les USA ont été envisagées notamment dans le cadre de l’avion de combat FSX et aussi dans le cadre du programme d’Initiative de défense stratégique (IDS plus connu sous le nom de "Guerre des étoiles") avec la coopération pour la défense antimissiles.

20 ans plus tard, en 2004, la suppression de ces principes a été envisagée, notamment par le directeur de l’Agence de Défense S. Ishiba, mais finalement, seule une exception générale avait été accordée au profit des Etats-Unis (4). Le point 7 de la Politique japonaise en termes de contrôle des exportations d’armes incluait les exportations de technologies dans les restrictions, si bien que les transferts de technologies ne pouvaient être destinés qu’aux seuls Etats-Unis (5). Le développement conjoint du missile antimissile SM-3 avec les Etats-Unis a marqué un premier pas en ce sens puisqu’une dérogation est négociée pour une vente export vers des pays alliés (6). En 2011, le précédent Premier ministre japonais, M. Yoshihiko Noda, s’abritant derrière le contexte de lutte contre le terrorisme, a assoupli une première fois ces règles. « La principale caractéristique de ces nouveaux standards était d’autoriser l’exportation dans les cas impliquant les opérations de maintien de la paix et les efforts de coopérations internationales ainsi que les cas de développement et de production internationaux de systèmes d’armes » (7). Cette atténuation permet la vente de dix patrouilleurs aux Philippines dans le cadre de la lutte contre le terrorisme et la piraterie.(8)

Ces nouvelles lignes directrices en matières d’exportations d’armes sont un pas de plus vers une normalisation du Japon, telle que souhaitée par le Premier ministre Shinzo Abe.

Perspectives offertes

Ce dernier est désireux d’étendre les liens de la défense japonais au-delà des États-Unis à d’autres pays asiatiques. Le Japon fournit déjà la Garde côtière des Philippines avec des navires de patrouille et négocie la vente à l’Inde d’avions amphibies de recherches et de sauvetage US-2, construits par le conglomérat industriel ShinMaywa.

Ce nouvel assouplissement des conditions d’exportation devrait donc offrir de nouvelles opportunités pour l’industrie de défense japonaise et les alliés de Tokyo.

Désormais, le Japon pourrait par exemple autoriser ses poids lourds de l’industrie de défense Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Kawasaki Heavy Industries ou IHI à livrer des équipements militaires à des gouvernements luttant contre la piraterie maritime ou à équiper des armées de nations amies d’Asie du Sud-Est. Outre les Philippines, il pourrait ainsi être question de l’Indonésie, du Vietnam ou d’autres pays riverains de la mer de Chine méridionale qui s’inquiètent, comme le Japon, des ambitions maritimes grandissantes de la Chine. Tokyo pourrait notamment leur vendre des navires d’occasion.

Les nouvelles règles vont permettre le développement et la production d’armes en partenariat avec les Etats-Unis et des pays européens, ainsi que l’exportation d’équipements militaires à des fins pacifiques et humanitaires, comme dans le cas de missions de maintien de la paix de l’ONU.
Le Japon produit déjà un grand nombre de ses armes sous licence de sociétés de défense des États-Unis et il développe en commun avec ceux-ci la dernière version du missile antimissile SM-3 mais il a peu de systèmes intégrés domestiques. Aussi des sociétés de défense japonaises voient des opportunités dans des développements en commun avec des entreprises étrangères ou pour fournir des composants.

Le gouvernement de M. Abe a fait valoir que les restrictions doivent être assouplies pour permettre au Japon de participer à des projets de développement d’armes de nouvelle génération, qui sont complexes, coûteux et internationaux. Un exemple souvent cité est le F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, développé par les États-Unis en partenariat avec huit autres pays, que le gouvernement de M. Abe a d’ailleurs ajouté à une liste d’exceptions à l’interdiction d’exportation d’armes qui a été publiée l’an dernier. Tokyo en a acheté une quarantaine d’exemplaires.

Des exportations très encadrées

Les projets de coopération devraient se multiplier. Toutefois, des contraintes demeurent. Une procédure encadre les exportations et la coopération. Dans le nouveau régime, les ministères de la défense, des affaires étrangères et du commerce effectueront normalement les contrôles. Le Conseil de sécurité nationale (NSC), un organisme lancé en décembre 2013 pour accélérer la prise de décision en matière de défense et de politique étrangère, décidera d’autoriser les exportations lorsque les transactions sont considérées comme importantes et nécessitent de la prudence. Le gouvernement publiera aussi des rapports annuels sur les équipements approuvés pour l’exportation par les ministères mentionnés et dévoilera certaines informations sur les affaires traitées par le NSC.

Par ailleurs, Tokyo précise toutefois qu’il ne vendra pas d’armes létales comme des tanks ou des avions de chasse. Le gouvernement Abe n’aura donc pas les mains totalement libres. Selon un récent sondage réalisé en février par l’agence de presse Kyodo, près de 67 % des Japonais seraient opposés à des exportations d’armes. Il y aura un travail de conviction et de persuasion à mener s’il veut aller encore plus loin.

Hormis son opinion publique, celle de son grand voisin, la Chine, importe. Pékin s’inquiète, a déclaré mardi 1er avril 2014 Hong Lei, porte-parole du ministère des Affaires étrangères chinois. « Nous espérons que la partie japonaise pourra tirer des leçons de l’histoire et prêter attention aux inquiétudes de ses voisins asiatiques quant à la sécurité », a-t-il souligné. Du côté de la Corée du Sud, c’est le maximum de « transparence » qui est jugé indispensable dans la mise en œuvre des nouvelles lignes directrices.

Au total, si le Japon doit tenir compte de son opinion et de celles de certains de ses voisins, « les nouvelles conditions permettront au Japon de développer conjointement des armes avec ses alliés et de donne à son industrie de défense accès à de nouveaux marchés et de la technologie de pointe », souligne à juste titre la BBC. C’est d’ailleurs avec Londres et les entreprises du Royaume-Uni que sont envisagées des coopérations en matière d’industrie de défense.

La visite début avril 2012 du Premier ministre britannique David Cameron, qui a rencontré à Tokyo son homologue Yoshihiko Noda, a ouvert la voie à une coopération industrielle sur certains projets d’armement. Un cadre de coopération en matière d’équipement de défense signé entre les deux nations en juillet 2013 le confirme. La première collaboration attendue concerne la protection chimique, bactériologique, radiologique et nucléaire. Plus largement, certains experts estiment que cet accord pourrait ouvrir la voie à des exportations d’armement plus conséquentes.

La France, qui a marqué à plusieurs reprises son intérêt stratégique pour l’Asie, envisage aussi une coopération en matière de défense. Elle a d’ailleurs été discutée lors de la visite du président François Hollande au Japon en juin 2013. La visite attendue de Shinzo Abe en mai en France pourrait être l’occasion d’annoncer des coopérations dans différents domaines (hélicoptères, propulsion sous-marine et drones sous-marins notamment).

(1) « New arms exports principles, guidelines are adopted by Abe cabinet », Japan Times, 1er avril 2014.
(2) Site du ministère des Affaires Etrangères du Japon, Japan’s Policies on the control of Arms exports, MOFA.
(3) Japan’s Policies on the control of Arms exports, MOFA
(4)Guibourg DELAMOTTE, La politique de défense du Japon, Presses universitaires Françaises, Paris, 2010, p. 255.
(5) Site du Ministère des Affaires Etrangères du Japon, Japan’s Policies on the control of Arms exports, MOFA.
(6)John GREVATT, « Japan moves closer to standart missile 3 export accord », Jane’s Defense Weekly, 27 mai 2011.
(7) « Noda administration bids farewell to arms export ban », The Asahi Shimbun, 28 décembre 2011
(8) « Japan grants PH soft loan for 10 patrol boats », Manila Standard Today, 14 février 2013.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 19:15
La Turquie accepte enfin le premier de ses dix A400M

L'armée de l'air turque a formellement accepté le premier de ses A400M commandés


04/04/2014 Michel Cabirol – LaTribune.fr


Airbus Defence & Space a remis à la Turquie son premier avion de transport militaire avec un retard de plus de trois mois. Ankara a tenté de marchander pour obtenir de nouveaux avantages.


Enfin... Airbus Defence & Space a remis ce vendredi à la Turquie le premier de ses dix avions de transport militaire A400M commandés avec un retard de plus de trois mois sur le calendrier fixé. L'armée de l'air turque avait estimé en décembre que l'appareil en voie de livraison n'était pas conforme au contrat signé. Ce qui avait particulièrement agacé le directeur général d'Airbus Group, Tom Enders, qui avait reproché fin février à la Turquie de marchander au lieu de prendre livraison de son premier. Il avait jugé la situation "inacceptable".

L'armée de l'air refusait depuis décembre dernier de prendre livraison de cet appareil, le troisième de la série d'un programme multinational. Le directeur général Tom Enders avait expliqué le blocage "par un seul mot : marchandage". Il avait exprimé l'espoir que cette "situation de plus en plus inacceptable" serait réglée rapidement, et a souhaité l'aide des autres nations qui ont commandé cet avion. "Comment peut-on augmenter la cadence de production quand on n'a pas la certitude que les clients vont prendre l'avion et qu'on est obligé de le parquer ?", s'était-il interrogé.


Que voulaient les Turcs ?

Selon des sources concordantes, les Turcs exigeaient un peu plus que le stipulait le contrat signé. Ce qui a entraîné de très forts marchandages entre Airbus Defence & Space et l'armée de l'air turque, qui a formellement accepté son premier A400M. Un classique en Turquie. Le secrétariat d'Etat turc aux Industries de défense (SSM) est considéré comme l'un des négociateur les plus redoutable au monde. "C'est simple avec eux, à la fin de la négociation vous n'avez plus de marges", ironise un industriel. Le groupe turc Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) est dans le programme A400M est déjà impliqué dans le partage de la charge de travail. Il a 5,56 % du programme. Soit 7,2 % de la partie aérostructures de l'appareil : soit une partie du fuselage, des portes et des ailerons et spoilers.

La Turquie devraient en principe recevoir cet été son deuxième appareil destiné à remplacer les vieux C-160 Transall. A suivre d'autant que le secrétaire d'Etat turc aux Industries de défense (SSM), Murad Bayar, a dû démissionner en début de semaine à la suite d'un nouveau scandale. Réputé proche du Premier ministre Recep Tayyip Erdogan, il a été victime de la diffusion sur internet (YouTube) d'une réunion confidentielle de sécurité où les Turcs envisageaient de faire bombarder un village turc depuis la Syrie pour pouvoir s'impliquer directement dans le conflit syrien. Du coup, Ankara avait bloqué Twitter et YouTube.


Une première commande à l'export en 2014 ?

L'A400M, sans équivalent sur le marché des avions militaires, a été commandé à 174 exemplaires par sept pays européens (Allemagne, Belgique, Espagne, France, Grande-Bretagne, Luxembourg et Turquie) et la Malaisie. La France a pris livraison des deux premiers exemplaires l'année dernière, et la Turquie devait prendre le troisième selon le calendrier de livraison convenu entre les partenaires de ce programme multinational.

Airbus Group espère décrocher une première commande à l'exportation pour cet appareil cette année. Pour l'A400M, "l'objectif est de décrocher un contrat cette année, même si ça va être très difficile", avait précisé fin janvier le directeur de l'activité avions militaires au sein de la division Airbus Defence and Space, Domingo Urena-Raso, lors d'une rencontre avec l'Association des journalistes professionnels de l'aéronautique et de l'espace (Ajpae) à Séville.

Depuis que l'armée de l'air française a pris livraison de cet appareil l'été dernier, neuf pays ont déposé des demandes d'informations sur l'avion et ses capacités, avait précisé le patron du programme A400M, Cédric Gautier. Deux demandes "de clients potentiels importants" ont été déposées en janvier, après que la France a fait voler l'appareil vers la Centrafrique et le Mali, sans attendre le délai habituel d'un an pour qualifier un nouvel avion, selon Domingo Urena-Raso.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 11:20
SAFFiR photo U.S. Naval Research Laboratory

SAFFiR photo U.S. Naval Research Laboratory


03/04/2014 LeMarin.fr


Les feux de navires sont toujours extrêmement redoutés des marins. L'US Navy va tester l'été prochain, en situation réelle, des robots pompiers à bord d'un navire amphibie désaffecté, l'ex-Shadwell, amarré à Mobile Bay, en Alabama.


Deux designs seront mis à l'épreuve. Tous deux ont l'aspect d'humanoïdes. L'un mesure 1,50 mètre de haut, l'autre, plus évolué, est un peu plus grand. Ils ont été mis au point dans le cadre d'un programme baptisé Shipboard Autonomous Firefighting Robot (Saffir). Sous l'égide du Naval Research Laboratory, celui-ci mobilise des chercheurs de l'université de Californie à Los Angeles (UCLA), de l'université de Pennsylvanie et du Virginia Tech.


Ces robots pompiers utiliseront les mêmes équipements que leurs homologues humains et seront envoyés sur les feux les plus dangereux et les plus difficiles d'accès. Ils devront exécuter un certain nombre de tâches telles que tourner une valve, prendre des tuyaux d'incendie, les dérouler et mettre en œuvre une lance à incendie.


Les robots sont aussi conçus pour mémoriser le plan d'un navire, se déplacer de manière autonome à l'intérieur de celui-ci et agir en interaction avec les humains. Des capteurs leur permettent de voir à travers une fumée épaisse et de localiser des survivants. Ils disposent de batteries qui leur donnent une autonomie de 30 minutes en situation de lutte contre l'incendie.


Ces robots devraient être capables de supporter des chaleurs intenses plus longtemps que les humains. Ils pourront entreprendre des tâches dangereuses dans des zones où les hommes ne seraient pas capables d'aller. L'objectif est de les faire intervenir dans des environnements où la température atteint 500°C.


Mettre au point un robot de forme humaine capable de travailler sur une plate-forme soumise au roulis et au tangage constitue en soi un défi. Selon leurs concepteurs, les robots Saffir pourront rester debout même dans les mers les plus dures.


Cette technologie des robots pompiers doit permettre à l'US Navy de combattre plus efficacement les feux de navires et de réduire les risques humains.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 11:20
USAF Releases MQ-1B Predator Accident Report



April 3, 2014 defense-unmanned.com

(Source: US Air Force; issued April 2, 2014)


LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. --- A failed power converter in an MQ-1B Predator's onboard control module led to the crash of the aircraft over the Mediterranean Sea, Sept. 17, 2013, according to an Air Combat Command Abbreviated Accident Investigation Board report released today.


The remotely piloted aircraft was deployed from the 432d Wing at Creech Air Force Base, Nev. When the accident occurred, the aircraft was returning from a 20- hour intelligence, surveillance and reconnaisance operational mission in support of U.S. Africa Command. The aircraft and one communication pod were lost on impact, with a loss valued at approximately $5.3 million. There were no injuries or damage to other government or private property.


According to the report, the crew noticed a loss in communications with the aircraft prior to handing control over to the Launch and Recovery Element. The crew completed appropriate checklists, and notified the GCS that they could not establish communications with the aircraft.


Two seconds prior to the loss of satellite link with the aircraft, the GCS logged electrical, flight control and engine warning indications. The board president found that these indicators were a direct result of a power converter malfunction in the aircraft's control module, which forced the RPA to lose control in the air and begin a rapid spiral descent into the Mediterranean Sea.


The board president found by clear and convincing evidence, that the mishap was caused by failure of the power converter in the control module, which led to loss of control of stabilizers and engine power output.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:50
Le système de communication des Gripen sous le feu de la critique



30.03.2014 rts.ch


Le système de communication des Gripen E est sur la sellette. Selon Le Matin Dimanche, Saab a décidé de travailler avec une société américaine proche du Département américain de la défense.


Les Gripen E convoités par l’armée suisse seront équipés d’un système de communication américain, selon une information du Matin Dimanche. Le groupe aéronautique suédois Saab a en effet écarté la société bernoise Roschi Rohde & Schwartz, pressentie pour équiper les futurs Gripen, et choisi le géant américain Rockwell Collins, proche du Département américain de la défense.


Selon des experts dans le domaine de la guerre électronique, les Américains pourraient accéder aux transmissions des jets suisses. Les clés de cryptage seront suisses, mais le boîtier du système et son logiciel seront américains.


Pas d'accès au code source


Les Helvètes n’auront pas accès au code source et la maintenance se fera aux Etats-Unis. De quoi permettre aux Américains de poser un mouchard s’ils le souhaitent, estiment les experts.


Interrogés par Le Matin Dimanche, le Département de la défense (DDPS) et Saab répondent que "l'utilisation de composants (ndlr: hardware et software) non européens n’a jamais été exclue".

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:50
Sweden Blocks Submarine Purchase


April 3, 2014 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Radio Sweden; published April 2, 2014)


The Government Stops Planned Submarine Deal


The government puts an end to previous plans to buy two submarines from the German-owned company Kockums, Swedish Television News reports.


In the spring budget the government intends to note that the conditions are not right for a deal with the company, which is owned by the German group ThyssenKrupp.


But the government still sees a need for two new submarines to be built and two existing submarines to be modernised. The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration has already ordered a preliminary study from Saab, on whether this company could do the job instead.


According to Swedish Television News, Saab has already been recruiting submarine engineers from Kockums, while ThyssenKrupp is offering them bonuses to try to get them to stay in the company.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:40
New Shvabe rifle scopes have passed tests

The Novosibirsk factory Shvabe – Defense and Security conducted successful tests of its new rifle scopes.


April 03, 2014 by Rostec


Two new kinds of scopes were tested: the PSU (a scope with an interchangeable zoom) and the PO1x20PMZ. The task was to verify target accuracy at different magnifications and to determine the effect of the design of the new wide sight in the PO1x20 series on the speed of raising the weapon, as well as testing the benefits of the new reticle.

The tests confirmed the stated specifications of the new scopes, establishing their advantage over other models. For example, the PSU scope when used with a gun showed an increase in target accuracy at 100 and 200 meters. When used with a Pecheneg machine gun, the scope with interchangeable zoom saved ammunition and increased the target accuracy regardless of the magnification.

Tests of the PO1x20PM3 scope showed a decrease in the time between raising a weapon and fixating on a target during close combat. It was also established that the folding protective covers would prevent the contamination of optic sights in bad weather, under extreme field conditions, and during intense combat.

The holding company Shvabe brings together key enterprises in Russia’s optoelectronics industry. It is composed of 62 organizations, including research and production associations, design buros, government institutions, and optical businesses. The holding company develops and manufactures high-tech optoelectronic products and systems for military and civil purposes, as well as other optical materials, medical equipment, energy-saving devices, and lighting equipment. The holding company is part of the state corporation Rostec and until November 2012 was known as Optical Systems and Technologies. Servei Valerjevich Maksin serves as the CEO of Schwabe, which is headquartered in Yekaterinburg. Its products can be found in 95 countries.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:40
BTR-4 Armored Personnel Carrier

BTR-4 Armored Personnel Carrier


April 3, 2014 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Ukroboronprom; issued April 2, 2014)


The enterprises of Ukroboronprom State Concern are ready to supply in the nearest future 74 armored personnel carriers in order to equip 10 military units of National Guard of Ukraine. In total 100 vehicles are to be supplied. It was reported by Yuriy Tereshenko, Temporary Acting Director.


According to the executive, Kharkiv Morozov Machne-Building Design Bureau State Enterprise is able to supply a batch of APCs of BTR-4 family in the quantity of 58 units, including 41 vehicles of BTR-4E, 7 commander vehicles BTR-4K, 2 command and staff vehicles BTR-4KSh and 8 recovery vehicles BMM-4S. Among them fully equipped and mission capable vehicles are following: 29 BTR-4E, 5 BTR-4K, 6 BMM-4S and 2 BTR-4KSh. These are the newest vehicles of Ukrainian developments, which have a high level of mobility, powerful weaponry, perfect fire control system and modern level of armored protection.



BTR-4K Command Vehicle

BTR-4K Command Vehicle

BTR-4KSh Command and Staff Vehicle

BTR-4KSh Command and Staff Vehicle

Besides, Concern enterprises are ready to transfer the National Guard other 16 APCs of different types. Thus, Kyiv Armored Plant can supply 5 new BTR-3E and 5 BTR-80, which are on the balance of SC Ukroboronservice and will be repaired by it. Zhytomyr Armoured Fighting Vehicle Plant is ready to supply 5 repaired BTR-80 and Mykolayiv Armoured Plant- one BTR-70DI accordingly.


“These vehicles will significantly enhance combat capabilities of the units of National Guard of Ukraine,” Y. Tereshenko underlined. He also added that Ukroboronprom will do its best for the qualitative increase of national defense capability and fight readiness of Armed Forces of Ukraine and other state military formations.


Y.Tereshenko also noted that after the supplying of those vehicles by Concern, the decision concerning the adaption of it will be made by National Guard commanders in accordance with the Law ‘On National Guard of Ukraine’ #876-VII dated on March 13, 2014.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:40



MOSCOU, 3 avril - RIA Novosti


Deux nouveaux systèmes de missiles participeront pour la première fois au défilé militaire du 9 mai à Moscou à l'occasion du 69e anniversaire de la victoire dans la Grande guerre patriotique de 1941-1945, a annoncé jeudi Kirill Kisselev, porte-parole du ministère russe de la Défense.

"Les missiles sol-air Tor-M2U et les missiles antichar Khrizantema-S défileront pour la première fois sur la place Rouge de Moscou pendant la parade de la Victoire. L'armée russe s'est dotée de ces missiles en 2013", a indiqué le porte-parole.

Au total, 11.000 militaires et plus de 100 matériels de guerre participeront au défilé du 9 mai à Moscou, notamment des systèmes de DCA Buk-M2U, des rampes de lancement des missiles S-400 Triumf, des systèmes antiaériens Pantsyr-S1, des missiles Topol-M, ainsi que des véhicules blindés GAZ-2330 Tigr et BTR-82A, des chars T-90A et des canons automoteurs Msta-S. Soixante-neuf avions et hélicoptères survoleront la place Rouge à la fin du défilé.

Les missiles Tor-M2U sont en service opérationnel dans trois régions militaires russes. Ils sont capables de détruire des  cibles aérodynamiques et balistiques, des missiles de croisière, ainsi que des dispositifs de reconnaissance aérienne et de lutte radioélectronique.

Le système de missiles antichar guidés Khrizantema-S est destiné à détruire des chars, des navires de petit tonnage et des aéroglisseurs, des aéronefs subsoniques volant à basse altitude, ainsi que des structures en béton armé, des sites blindés et des bunkers.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:40
BTR-4 Armored Personnel Carrier

BTR-4 Armored Personnel Carrier



April 3, 2014 By Richard Tomkins (UPI)


Ukrainian industry has stepped up to the plate in the country's dispute with Russia, saying it can soon supply armored personnel carriers to the National Guard.


Ukraine’s state-owned enterprise, Ukroboronprom, says it's ready to supply 74 armored personnel carriers to the military “in the nearest future.”

The APCs would equip 10 military units of the National Guard of Ukraine. In total 100 vehicles are to be supplied, Ukroboronprom’s temporary Acting Director Yuriy Tereshenko said.

Ukraine, once part of the now-defunct Soviet Union, is in a territorial and political crisis with Russia, which has annexed the Crimea region of the country.

The takeover, which has not been recognized by the United Nations, and the reported deployment of thousands of Russian troops to the region, has fueled fear that the remainder of Ukraine could face Russian-inspired political unrest or worse.

“These vehicles will significantly enhance combat capabilities of the units of the National Guard of Ukraine,” Tereshenko said. He said Ukroboronprom will do its best for the qualitative increase of national defense capability and fight readiness of the armed forces and other state military organizations.

According to Tereshenko, the government’s Kharkiv Morozov Machne-Building Design Bureau can supply 58 BTR-4 APCs. Ukroboronprom can transfer to the National Guard 16 other APCs of different types. Manufacturing plants of other organizations would also contribute the number of armored personnel carriers.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:35
Team 21 Submits Bid for Future Australian Pilot Training System


CANBERRA, Australia, 3 April 2014 – Pacific Sentinel


Lockheed Martin Australia and Pilatus Aircraft, supported by Hawker Pacific, have jointly launched a bid to provide a new pilot training system for the Australian Defence Force.


The consortium, known as Team 21, submitted its proposal for the AIR 5428 Pilot Training System on March 31st. Under the proposal, Australian Defence Force pilots will graduate from a proven training system tailored to Australian requirements.


The companies in this team are currently in the eighth year of a 20-year performance-based flight training contract to provide the Basic Wings Course (BWC) to the Republic of Singapore Air Force, at Royal Australian Air Force Base Pearce in Western Australia.



“Team 21 offers superior performance, a proven team in Australia and capability for the future,” said Raydon Gates, Lockheed Martin Australia chief executive. “We have an established track record and have now graduated 20 classes from a Pilatus PC-21 based pilot training program at RAAF Base Pearce. BWC has very similar mission and support systems as proposed for AIR 5428, significantly reducing risk to the Commonwealth.”


“Team 21’s proven experience provides an excellent foundation for a cost-effective, off-the-shelf solution tailored to prepare Australian Navy, Army and Air Force pilots for fourth and fifth generation aircraft capability,” said Markus Bucher, Pilatus chief executive officer.


Selection of Team 21’s comprehensive pilot training solution will provide Australia with a fifth generation training system, delivering a safe, affordable and practical solution for today’s training needs while also supporting future requirements.

Established in 1939, Pilatus Aircraft Ltd is the world's leading manufacturer of single-engine turboprop aircraft. Headquartered in Stans, Switzerland, Pilatus is a privately held company employing close to 2000 people. Pilatus provides aircraft and aviation services worldwide for the general aviation, commercial, training, utility, and special mission markets. The company, through Pilatus Australia Pty Ltd, currently supports over 140 Australian based military and civil aircraft.
Hawker Pacific Pty Ltd was formed in 1978 with its corporate headquarters in Sydney NSW, employs over 400 people across Australia and has significant aviation sales and support capabilities across the Asia Pacific and the Middle East. Hawker Pacific’s Government Business unit is the prime contractor to the ADF delivering the B300 aircraft capability to 32 and 38 Squadrons at RAAF Bases East Sale and Townsville, holding Authorised Engineering Organisation and Approved Maintenance Organisation accreditation. At RAAF Base Pearce, Hawker Pacific has successfully provided maintenance support to the Singapore Air Force PC-21 aircraft training capability in synergy with Lockheed Martin and Pilatus since 2006.
Lockheed Martin Australia, headquartered in Canberra, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of US-based Lockheed Martin Corporation, a global security and aerospace company. LM Australia specialises in the development, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The company employs more than 900 people in Australia and New Zealand working on a wide range of major programmes spanning the aerospace, defence and civil sectors.
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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:35
NATO to Suspend Cooperation with Russia on Afghan Choppers, Training


April 3rd, 2014 defencetalk.com (Ria Novisti)


NATO will suspend cooperation with Russia on the maintenance of Afghan helicopters and a joint anti-drug operation, a source in the alliance told RIA Novosti.


Foreign chiefs of NATO’s 28 member states earlier froze “practical civilian and military cooperation” with Moscow but vowed to keep intact the NATO-Russia Council and diplomatic contacts at the ambassadorial level and above.


They also said Tuesday the Western military bloc would consider reviving ties with Moscow during the next Brussels meeting in June.


NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen earlier said the bloc hoped to continue working with Russia in Afghanistan and train anti-drug officials in Afghanistan and Pakistan. According to an anonymous source in the alliance, current trainees will be allowed to complete the training program. The project will then be scrapped.


The same future lies ahead for the maintenance program of Afghan helicopters, meaning NATO will have to think of another way to procure spare parts for the Russia-made choppers, bypassing the NATO-Russia Council.


The freeze in Russia-NATO cooperation will not affect the existing bilateral agreement on cargo transit to Afghanistan across Russian territory.


The source also noted that the freeze would stay in place indefinitely until the situation around Ukraine improved. These measures, the official explained, are linked to Russia’s handling of the Ukrainian crisis and would be lifted only when Moscow changed its stance on the issue.


Russia has been reluctant to negotiate with Ukraine, where an ultranationalist opposition has been in power since a February coup, calling the new government illegitimate.


The West has long been pressuring Moscow to recognize the Maidan regime, despite the fact that Ukraine’s President Viktor Yanukovich has never been impeached and fled the country for fear of being executed by right-wing militia.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:25
L'Argentine Paiera plus de $300 Millions un Escadron de Kfir Made In Israel.


03.04.2014 Yair Cohen (Savyon) – Israel Valley


Un deal qui va certainement booster les relations bilatérales entre les deux pays. L’Argentine est en négociation exclusives avec Israël pour racheter plus de 20 Kfirs (remis à jour) fabriqués dans l’Etat Hébreu depuis au moins 30 ans. C’est IAI qui devrait bénéficier de ce contrat important.



Les origines du Kfir remontent à l’embargo imposé par la France en 1969. Suite à la guerre des Six Jours et à l’attaque de l’aéroport de Beyrouth par l’armée israélienne (Opération Gift, 28 décembre 1968), le président Charles de Gaulle décrète un embargo sur le Moyen-Orient (pour Israël, cela concerne principalement les vedettes Sa’ar III et les Mirage 5).


En conséquence, l’État hébreu n’est plus en mesure d’approvisionner son aviation militaire en chasseurs Mirage et pièces détachées. Les autorités décident de procéder au développement d’un chasseur de fabrication nationale.


Le gouvernement israélien lance alors deux projets : le projet Raam A, construction d’un appareil d’après les plans du Mirage 5 (celui-ci devient le Nesher) ; le projet Raam B, qui impliquait alors le changement du réacteur ATAR 9C par le General Electric J79 pour le projet Raam A.


Le 19 avril 1971, Alfred Frauenknecht, ingénieur suisse, employé de la firme helvétique Sulzer fabriquant sous licence le Dassault Mirage IIIS, a avoué avoir vendu les plans secrets de cet appareil à Israël pour la somme de 200 000 $;

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:25
VBTP-MR Guarani photo Andre Gustavo Stumpf Filho

VBTP-MR Guarani photo Andre Gustavo Stumpf Filho


04/02/2014  Richard de Silva – Defence IQ


In March, the 33rd Motorized Infantry Battalion, under the15th Mechanized Infantry Brigade, will be receiving the first 13 VBTP-MR Guarani armoured personnel carrier, making it the first regular army unit to be issued with the new vehicle.


The initial 86 vehicles will eventually begin trials to build the doctrine for its use in service. Overall, 2,044 units have been put into production, with deliveries beginning in 2012 and due to carry on until 2030.


The delivery further marks the period of transformation taking place across the nation’s military, in conjunction with the rapid upturn of Brazil’s economic health seen in the past ten years.


Lieutenant General Luiz Felipe Linhares Gomes, head of the Army’s Project Management Office, told a Defence IQ conference this year that while the Army undergoes its sweeping transformation, the first and main area to transform is the “hearts and minds” of its own service personnel and the general public, all of whom will need to understand the intrinsic value that the military has on the wider economic and cultural make-up of the nation.


Presenting the official update to the Guarani Project at the International Armoured Vehicles event in London, Linhares explained that “here, we have the opportunity to meet several companies that maybe can work with us. In parallel, we have the opportunity to showcase our projects and maybe even to sell our products. It’s perfect.”


The General will also be speaking at the Armoured Vehicles Latin America conference in Rio de Janeiro in May, alongside other decision makers from the Army and Marine Corps as the drive continues to modernise its vehicle fleets.


Old lessons, new partners


There are seven key army modernisation projects inducing transformation, of which Guarani is just one. Linhares jokingly describes these programmes as “like my daughters – beautiful but very expensive,” but it is has been a valid concern from the outset that the endeavour has paid heed to long-term cost implications.


For the Guarani Project, specifically, a chief aim has been to transform military organisations involved in mechanised solutions for infantry and cavalry for purposes of productivity, efficiency and value for money. To accomplish this, several new families of armoured wheeled vehicles are being developed with the capacity to increase deterrence and homeland defence.


The VBTP-MR is replacing the Urutu CASCAVEL originally manufactured by ENGESA, and which have been in use for over 40 years. Designed by the Science, Technology and Innovation System of the Army, the new vehicle was developed in partnership with IVECO Defence, a subsidiary of FIAT Cars SA based in the city of Sete Lagoas.


Throughout the process, simplicity has been an important factor governing design decisions, with most of the eq coming through COTS. As a requirement, at least 60 per cent of the vehicle components have to have originated from local industry. This decision has not just been a proactive one – Engesa’s bankruptcy in 1993 has served as a dire warning, having left the country without the Urutu equipmentmanufacturing and design skills to continue development of the fleet.


“The memory of that is still raw,” Linhares admits. “We lost everything. So this approach is a safeguard.”


Other regional nations are watching Guarani developments with heightened interest and an eye to procure their own fleet. Test and evaluation of the vehicle has been taking place in a collaborative capacity between Brazil and Argentina, with the latter the next most likely recipient to purchase.


Others, including Colombia and Ecuador, are understood to be placing the vehicle in its list of possible ventures over the coming years.


Recent developments


At present, the vehicle is preparing to begin work on its 8x8 variant for the Marines, of which the funding and initial design have already been confirmed.


Recent reports have also confirmed that the Army’s range of 4x4 vehicles, another part of the Guarani project, is now set to be deployed in early 2015. International tender is due to be released in the second quarter of 2014, aiming towards contract finalisations in the latter part of the year. The first delivery will see “32 vehicles in a patrol configuration, along with training services, spares, and initial logistic support,” according to IHS Jane’s.


In February, the Army selected Thales for its vehicle intercom systems contract, which will see communication systems integrated onto the Guarani vehicle, as well as on the Cascavel, M113, and the refurbished Urutus, by June2014.


The system, known as ‘Sotas’, provides the hub for all data and voice communications inside the Guarani, including sensors, terminals and radios.


Hervé Derrey, Vice-President of Thales’s Radio Communication Products Business, said “Sotas is one of the most advanced communication solutions for the digitisation of the battlespace and will enable Brazilian Forces to dramatically increase situational awareness at all levels of the command structure,”

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
USS Preble conduct an operational tomahawk missile launch - photo US Navy

USS Preble conduct an operational tomahawk missile launch - photo US Navy


April 3, 2014. David Pugliese - Defence Watch


National Defence magazine is reporting this:


The Raytheon Co. is challenging the Navy’s decision to halt manufacturing of the Tomahawk cruise missile in 2016, and is counting on its congressional allies to help keep the weapon in production for the foreseeable future.


Executives will seek to make the case that the Tomahawk supplier base of more than 300 companies in 24 states would be weakened without new orders. If the production line — based in Tucson, Ariz. — is shut down, Raytheon officials contend, the Navy might not be able to restart it at a later time.


Before the Pentagon was hit with automatic budget cuts in 2013, the Navy had planned on buying about 200 Tomahawks per year for the next five years. In fiscal year 2015, the Navy proposed a reduced buy of 100 missiles and no new orders after 2016. The Navy still plans to design a new land-attack missile and upgrade the current inventory of Tomahawks with new electronics.


Navy Secretary Ray Mabus defended the decision, as the United States already has an arsenal of 4,000 Tomahawks. “When you add the Tomahawks that we plan to buy in 2015, it will carry us through any eventuality that we could foresee,” he told the Senate Armed Services Committee. Studies will begin next year to design a follow-on weapon, he added. “We certainly don’t want, don’t need a gap between the Tomahawk and the next weapon.”


Full story here:



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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
USAF Submits $8B Unfunded List to Congress

The Air Force's 2015 unfunded priorities list includes five HC-130Js. (Air Force)


Apr. 3, 2014 - By MARCUS WEISGERBER – Defense News


WASHINGTON — The US Air Force has sent Congress an $8 billion unfunded priorities list, with more than $3.3 billion eyed for new procurement programs, according to a copy of the list obtained by Defense News.

The undated list includes $200 million for the Combat Rescue Helicopter program, a last-minute add to the five-year spending projection contained in the Pentagon’s fiscal 2015 budget proposal, which was sent to Capitol Hill in early March.

The list also includes more than $400 million for five Lockheed Martin F-35 joint strike fighters — two for the Air Force and three for international sales.

The list includes funding for five Lockheed MC-130Js, five HC-130Js and 12 General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aircraft. Two F-35s, the C-130Js and Reapers also appeared in the White House’s Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative.

About $1.6 billion of the funding would go toward more than five dozen weapons programs, for upgrade and enhancement work.

Another $3 billion would go toward facility maintenance.

In addition, the Air National Guard sent Congress a separate $2.6 billion 2015 unfunded priority list.

The wish list includes $720 million that would be used to purchase 10 new C-130Js. The aircraft would replace a squadron of C-130H aircraft.

The list includes $1.4 billion for modernization of Guard airlift, fighter and rescue aircraft. The eyed upgrades include electronic warfare suites, sensors, situational awareness displays and navigation equipment.

Another $40 million is eyed for five Air Guard cyber protection teams

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
Marine Corps Scraps Tracks for Amphibious Combat Vehicle



April 4, 2014 by Bryant Jordan defensetech.org

The Marine Corps is walking away from the high-speed Amphibious Combat Vehicle it envisioned – at least for the time being – but Marine Commandant Gen. James Amos said a wheeled version will have to do in this budget environment.

“We elected to switch and go to a wheeled vehicle,” Amos said on April 1 during a House Appropriations Committee hearing. “These are commercial off-the-shelf … they’re already being made by several different manufacturers.”

Unlike the planned ACV, the vehicle the Corps now calls the ACV 1.1 will not be able to deploy quickly from ship to shore from up to 12 miles out and it will not move on treads once landed. But what makes it a sound alternative is that the Corps already has other means to deploy it over water rapidly, Amos said. And the fact it will move on wheels makes it more survivable in a combat theatre.

Following it’s now cancelled Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, the Marine Corps seem to have abandoned efforts to quickly develop an amphibious vehicle that can both swim at what the Corps calls high water speeds of 13 to 15 knots and survive substantial land threats once ashore. Instead, the Corps plans to field a less-ambitious interim vehicle and simultaneously work on research and development aimed at reaching the desired combination of attributes for the future , senior leaders have said.

And then there’s the cost. Amos said the 300 ACV 1.1s he anticipates buying will cost about $3 million to $4.5 million each. The original ACV, the Corps had envisioned, would have cost between $12 million and $14 million each, he said.

“It’s the way to go, and they are highly mobile, and that’s the direction we’re going,” Amos said.

It does not appear that the Corps thinks it is technically feasible or cost-effective to attempt quick delivery of a vehicle that can both swim at faster speeds for ship to shore missions and also function as a sufficiently survivable land vehicle.

The ACV, as initially conceived, would be able to swim to shore from as far out as 12 miles. While the ACV 1.1 will not do that, Amos said the Corps’ fleet of connectors can. These include some 81Landing Craft Air Cushions, or LCACs, that are capable of transporting up to 150,000 pounds and as many as 180 Marines. Powered by four gas-turbine engines and two four-bladed propellers, the LCACs can travel over water, ice, snow, sand and tundra.

Additionally, Amos told lawmakers during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing, the Corps has two Joint High Speed Vehicles currently out at sea and another eight under contract.

“Those will go fast, they will haul a lot of Marines and vehicles,” he said. “That gives us the ability to maneuver from a sea base that could be pushed out as far as 100 miles because of an enemy threat.”

“So what we’ve done is we’ve changed the paradigm in the way we thought, in that we have to swim all that way in our amphibious combat vehicle,” he said. “Well, it’s impractical now. Can we get on a connector, and the connector take us in? And the answer is yes.”

Amos still plans for the Corps to get the ACV it originally wanted. That’s now called ACV 1.2.

Amos said he came to the tough decision a few months ago to scrap original plans for the ACV. What made it more difficult is that just two years earlier the Corps called it quits on the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle after spending about 15 years and more than $3 billion in research, development and testing.

Amos has not identified the companies who may compete for the ACV 1.1 contract, though in the past Lockheed, General Dynamics and BAE Systems have done so, according to Manny Pacheco, a spokesman for the Corps’s Program Executive Office Land Systems Equipment Modernization.

Pacheco said an RFI for the ACV 1.1 is still a few months off.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
Sparton and USSI to supply sonobuoys to ERAPSCO

A sonobuoy loaded on to an aircraft. Photo US Navy


3 April 2014 naval-technology.com


ERAPSCO/Sonobuoy, a joint venture between electronics manufacturing firm Sparton and Ultra Electronics (ULE) subsidiary USSI, has awarded subcontracts worth $13.3m to its parent companies.


Under the $5.6m and $5.2m deals awarded to Sparton Electronics Florida and USSI respectively, the companies will manufacture and supply passive and active sonobuoys to ERAPSCO.


The subcontracts will support the multiple international agreements that the joint venture has for proposed exercises with the US Navy, as well as independent training and exercises, which have been approved under export regulations.


Designed to support the US Navy's anti-submarine forces, the sonobuoys can detect acoustic emissions or reflections from potentially hostile submarines and transmit these signals to US Navy airborne anti-submarine warfare forces.


As part of the deal, the sonobuoys will be manufactured at Sparton's De Leon Springs facility in Florida and USSI's Columbia City base in Indiana.


With production expected to be completed by June 2014, the passive and active sonobuoys will be used for detection, classification, and localisation of opponent submarines during peacetime and combat operations.

"Sonobuoys can deploy an acoustical signal source and receive underwater signals of interest."


They can also be used to evaluate environmental conditions in order to help deploy best search tactics, and for communication with friendly submarines.


In addition, they can send an acoustical signal source and receive underwater signals of interest that are sent to monitoring units for analysis.


Passive sonobuoys are used in the initial detection of submarines and the localisation of targets, while the active ones can identify targets quickly and accurately in extreme environmental conditions against a very quiet submarine, or one in an attack mode.


Certain specialised sonobuoys are capable of identifying electric fields and magnetic anomalies, as well as the light emitted by microscopic organisms disturbed by the passage of a submarine.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
photo Lockheed Martin

photo Lockheed Martin

MARIETTA, Ga. April 3, 2014 – Lockheed Martin


A U.S. Air Force crew ferried the 18th C-5M Super Galaxy to Dover Air Force Base, Del., yesterday from the Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] facilities here.
Aircraft 87-0040 was flown by Lieutenant General Brooks L. Bash, Vice Commander, Air Mobility Command at Scott Air Force Base, Ill., to Delaware, making Dover the first base with a complete C-5M Super Galaxy fleet.
The C-5M is the only true strategic airlifter capable of offering the entire globe in one unrefueled flight. A total of 52 Super Galaxy aircraft are scheduled to be delivered to the Air Force by 2018.
Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 115,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s net sales for 2013 were $45.4 billion.

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4 avril 2014 5 04 /04 /avril /2014 07:20
Northrop Grumman Flies First Production Smart Node Pod


SAN DIEGO – April 3, 2014 – Northrop Grumman


Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC) has completed a series of flight tests demonstrating the first production Smart Node Pod for the U.S. Air Force.


Smart Node Pod is an aircraft-mounted airborne communications system that allows real-time information to be exchanged among many disparate military and commercial radios and different datalinks, extends the network to the forward edge of the battlefield and relays full-motion video.


Northrop Grumman conducted five flights to certify performance characteristics in February in Virginia Beach, Va. During the flights, the Smart Node Pod demonstrated the ability to transmit full-motion video, imagery, voice and digital messages between warfighters both in the air and on the ground via various waveforms and datalinks and its interoperability with the proprietary and open source forward tactical handheld devices.


The company is under contract to produce Smart Node Pod systems for the Air Force, with deliveries scheduled through mid-summer of this year. Two different pod designs – a single-pod and a multipod architecture – are in production.


"This proven, reliable technology gives an extremely capable but lightweight communications, situational awareness, and command and control capability that can be readily mounted on many different military aircraft and controlled by the deployed commander," said Jeannie Hilger, vice president, Network Communication Systems, Northrop Grumman Information Systems.


Hilger said the pod can connect to the high-altitude Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) platforms, ground operational centers or other pods for beyond-line-of sight connectivity and provides access to high level intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance data and command and control information. "In this manner, Smart Node Pod has the capability to augment BACN in its anchor role as the persistent high altitude gateway of the Joint Aerial Layer Network (JALN) by providing connectivity at the lower tier. Working in unison, Smart Node Pod and BACN have the potential to expand warfighter benefits by building out a multitiered JALN architecture and providing network connectivity across the battlespace."


Smart Node Pod is based on BACN technology Northrop Grumman developed for the Air Force.


Northrop Grumman is the prime contractor for developing, deploying, operating and sustaining the BACN systems flying missions in support of U.S. Central Command. The company was awarded the first BACN contract in April 2005 by the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass. Since the system was deployed in 2008, it has delivered near 24/7 coverage in theater. Northrop Grumman initially deployed BACN to satisfy a joint urgent operational need. It is now a key enabler of surface and airborne missions theaterwide.


Northrop Grumman is a leading global security company providing innovative systems, products and solutions in unmanned systems, cyber, C4ISR, and logistics and modernization to government and commercial customers worldwide. Please visit www.northropgrumman.com for more information.

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