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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 17:30
photo Airbus Group

photo Airbus Group

Les Italiens d'Alenia Aermacchi (groupe Finmeccanica) auraient obtenu la signature d'une Letter of Intent pour la vente de 28 Typhoon au Koweït

 

16/01/2014 Michel Cabirol – latribune.fr

 

Alenia Aermacchi, responsable de la campagne du Typhoon avec BAE Systems, aurait signé une Letter of intent (LoI) avec le Koweït pour la vente de 28 avions de combat, dont quatre en option.

 

Le Typhoon serait en pole position au Koweït. Selon plusieurs sources concordantes, le consortium Eurofighter (BAE Systems, EADS et l'italien Finmeccanica) aurait signé une LoI (Letter of intent) avec cet émirat de la péninsule arabique. Plus exactement, Alenia Aermacchi (groupe Finmeccanica) aurait obtenu quelques jours avant l'annonce de la sélection du Gripen au Brésil la signature de ce document, qui n'est pas engageant à ce stade des négociations. La campagne de promotion est assurée par le tandem BAE Systems et Alenia Aermacchi. 

La compétition oppose Boeing avec le F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Eurofighter avec le Typhoon et Dassault Aviation avec le Rafale F3 pour la fourniture de 28 avions de combat bimoteurs, dont quatre en option. Une sélection du Typhoon serait une surprise tant le Koweït est sous influence américaine depuis la première guerre du Golfe. L'armée américaine dispose de 12 bases dans l'émirat, qui dispose déjà de F/A-18C/D Hornet (32 F/A-18C et 8 F/A-18D) de Boeing. Le Koweït souhaite compléter sa flotte avec un second appareil. 

 

Un appareil déjà acheté par l'Arabie Saoudite et Oman

En dépit de son échec cuisant aux Emirats Arabes Unis (EAU), le consortium Eurofighter a engrangé de beaux succès au Moyen-Orient. Il a vendu en septembre 2007 à l'Arabie Saoudite 72 Typhoon "Tranche 2" (58 monoplaces et 14 biplaces) pour équiper son armée de l'air, la RSAF. La signature avait été toutefois retardée en raison de l'enquête anti-corruption conduite par le SFO (Serious Fraud Office) britannique sur les conditions de passation des contrats "Al Yamamah" dans les années 80 et 90. Mais le SFO a brutalement arrêté fin 2006 son enquête après l'intervention directe de Tony Blair, alors Premier ministre, qui explique que l'enquête pourrait nuire à la sécurité nationale. 

Le consortium a également accroché en décembre 2012 un second contrat à Oman où il était en négociations exclusives depuis janvier 2012 dans le cadre d'un contrat de gré à gré. Le contrat porte sur la fourniture "à partir de 2017" de 12 Typhoon et de huit avions d'entraînement Hawk à la Royal Air Force d'Oman. Une commande d'environ 3 milliards d'euros. Enfin, Eurofighter est également en très bonne position pour remporter un nouveau succès à Bahrein, qui a exprimé "un intérêt pour le Typhoon", avait déclaré en août dernier un porte-parole de BAE Systems. "Le gouvernement britannique a entamé des discussions à un stade très préliminaire. BAE Systems soutient le gouvernement britannique dans ces négociations", avait-il précisé. Enfin, le Typhoon est en compétition contre Rafale au Qatar (une première tranche de 36 avions de combat, puis 36 autres). 

 

Et le Rafale au Koweït ? 

C'est en juin 2009 que l'on commence à parler du Rafale au Koweït à l'occasion d'un passage rapide dans cet émirat de Nicolas Sarkozy. L'achat éventuel de ces appareils fait l'objet de "discussions très approfondies" et "assez avancées", avait souligné l'ancien président. "On s'est mis comme échéance la fin de l'année"

Puis, en octobre 2009, le ministre koweïtien de la Défense et vice-Premier ministre avait indiqué lors d'une visite à Paris que son pays serait "fier" d'avoir du Rafale dans ses armées. "Nous espérons voir une offre (française) bientôt à ce sujet", avait-il expliqué, précisant qu'elle "sera étudiée très sérieusement et de façon très claire par l'armée de l'air koweïtienne". Dans l'entourage du ministre de la Défense d'alors Hervé Morin, on évoquait alors 36 appareils.

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 13:55
Jean-Michel Palagos, nouveau pilote de Défense Conseil International

 

16/01 Par Laurance N'kaoua – LesEchos.fr

 

Un atlas du monde en 1555, une biographie de Jean Moulin, un ouvrage sur la Compagnie des Indes, un autre sur l'Indochine, un troisième sur la Patrouille de France… dans son bureau chez Défense Conseil International, Jean-Michel Palagos n'a apporté que quelques beaux livres. Ni les maquettes d'hélicoptère, ni les bibelots n'appartiennent à ce PDG, qui vient de quitter le cabinet du ministre de la Défense, Jean-Yves Le Drian, pour piloter cette société spécialisée dans l'accompagnement des armées de pays ayant acquis du matériel français.

 

Ne s'encombrer que d'une formidable joie de vivre… sans doute est-ce là l'héritage de son père, républicain espagnol, exilé par deux fois. En Algérie d'abord, où Jean-Michel Palagos est né. En France, ensuite, sur les hauteurs de Montrouge, dans le fracas de 1962.

 

Mais le goût pour la simplicité de Jean-Michel Palagos vient aussi de son passage à l'armée. Un univers qu'il découvre à vingt ans, lors de son service militaire, et que ce patron, chaleureux, fidèle mais secret, ne quittera plus. « Longtemps, mon existence a tenu en 111 kilos : c'était le poids de ma cantine Sernam », sourit-il.

 

Pour ce dirigeant de soixante-trois ans, très attaché à ses racines - il parle le catalan de son père -, l'armée est un ancrage. Ce fonceur, que des études d'économie avaient lassé et qui n'a décroché sa maîtrise de droit que pour rassurer ses parents, a été séduit, dit-il, par un mélange de choses simples - comme la camaraderie, le côté ludique, le sport… - et de ressorts plus complexes, comme le sentiment d'être redevable à la France. « Malgré un quotidien éprouvant physiquement, je me suis beaucoup amusé. Nous étions tous logés à la même enseigne, mais quelle richesse humaine ! »

 

De simple soldat à DRH

 

Ce père de quatre enfants, dont les insignes de la Légion d'honneur et de l'ordre du Mérite ornent le veston, en est convaincu : « On ne fait bien un métier que si on y prend du plaisir. J'ai aimé tout ce que j'ai fait. » Soldat, sous-officier, lieutenant, capitaine, commandant…, il sillonne les casernes de Pau, Clermont-Ferrand, Montpellier, Colmar ou Donaueschingen, en Allemagne. Sans se douter qu'un jour, en tant que conseiller d'Alain Richard au ministère de la Défense, c'est lui qui rédigerait l'essentiel de la loi de professionnalisation des armées, pour suspendre le service national.

 

C'est en 1986, après quinze ans de terrain, qu'il passe de l'autre côté du décor : à l'état-major. Après avoir réussi le concours de l'Ecole de guerre, ses supérieurs l'invitent à tenter Sciences po. D'études en concours, il accède au sommet, en devenant contrôleur général des armées. Et oeuvre, dans la foulée, comme directeur des études du Centre des hautes études de l'armement. En 1997, il rejoint le cabinet d'Alain Richard. Et, dès 2000, l'ancien soldat est promu DRH du ministère de la Défense. Cinq ans durant, il présidera au destin de plus de 300.000 civils et militaires.

 

Pour autant, le monde de l'entreprise ne lui est pas étranger. Soucieux de ne pas « traverser la vie sans rien faire de concret », il crée, en 2005, le cabinet de conseil en organisation Codéac.

 

Aujourd'hui, la structure est en sommeil. Car sa rencontre, en 2006, avec Jean-Yves Le Drian et son futur directeur de cabinet Cédric Lewandowski est décisive. Le trio oeuvre à la campagne de Ségolène Royal, puis à celle de François Hollande : doté, dit-on, d'une très belle plume, Jean-Michel Palagos s'embarque dans l'aventure. « Il n'est pas homme à faire les choses à moitié. Il s'engage, corps et âme, avec force », raconte Cédric Lewandowski. Les trois hommes resteront liés. A l'Hôtel de Brienne, Jean-Michel Palagos est directeur adjoint du cabinet du ministre. A présent, chez DCI, dont l'Etat est actionnaire à 49,9 %, ce « très grand travailleur », à la fois « curieux de tout connaître » et discret, est fin prêt à relever les défis, notamment à l'international…

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 13:55
ECA annonce la vente de simulateurs terrestres de défense à l’international

 

Toulon, le 16 janvier 2014 ECA

 

ECA annonce la vente à l’export, au travers de sa filiale ECA FAROS, de simulateurs d’entraînement pour véhicules terrestres de défense. Cette commande d’un montant significatif pour le groupe sera comptabilisée sur plusieurs exercices. Ajoutée aux autres commandes du mois, elle permet à ECA d’afficher sa meilleure prise de commande historique mensuelle en simulation.

 

Ces simulateurs 6 axes haut de gamme sont mis en réseau et permettent d’entraîner les personnels pour des missions collaboratives sur un théâtre d’opération, une supervision permettant de vérifier le bon déroulement de la mission simulée.

 

ECA était déjà présent dans la simulation de défense pour le domaine naval. Une commande de plusieurs millions d’euros a d’ailleurs déjà été enregistrée en Asie dans ce secteur mi-2013.

 

Cette nouvelle commande de simulateurs pour la défense terrestre a été obtenue en combinant les compétences en simulation de conduite de véhicules d’ECA FAROS et les compétences Défense du groupe.

 

Le marché annuel mondial pour des simulateurs terrestres de défense comparables est supérieur à 50 millions d’euros. ECA vise à devenir un acteur majeur de ce marché.

 

A propos d’ECA

Leader dans la protection des vies humaines par la robotique, la simulation et les systèmes de contrôle et de sécurité, le Groupe ECA a acquis des positions de leader dans des applications dédiées aux «milieux hostiles et contraints », des marchés de niche à fort contenu technologique et aux cycles complémentaires tels que la défense, la Sécurité Intérieure, le Nucléaire, l’Offshore ou l’Aéronautique. A la pointe de l’innovation, ECA est le N°1 mondial dans la robotique de déminage sous -marin avec 70% du parc installé et le N°1 français pour la robotique terrestre et les systèmes d’assemblage (aéronautique).

En 2012, le groupe a réalisé un chiffre d’affaires de 98,8 M€ qui se répartit ainsi :

Défense/Robotique (50,3%): robots d’identification et de destruction de mines, robots autonomes de détection/cartographie, drones de surface, simulateurs navals, robots terrestres, systèmes de contrôle pour les navires, etc. ;

Civil/Aéronautique (49,7%): Systèmes de contrôle/sécurité et simulateurs d’entraînement pour l’Aéronautique, simulateurs terrestres, etc.

Retrouvez l’ensemble de notre communication financière sur www.ecagroup.com

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 13:50
European Defence Matters - new video

18 déc. 2013  European Defence Agency

 

European Defence Agency is the place for defence cooperation enabling Member States to strengthen their defence capabilities. Find out more about the work of the Agency in this video.

More on http://www.eda.europa.eu/

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 13:40
La Russie veut exporter 200.000 Kalachnikov par an aux Etats-Unis

 

13/01/2014 latribune.fr 

 

La marque Kalachnikov est toujours aussi demandée, quinze jours après la mort du créateur de l'arme d'assaut soviétique, le AK-47 : la Russie annonce la signature d'un contrat qui la verra livrer 200.000 armes par an aux États-Unis.

 

De quoi inspirer quelques jeux de mots sur la Guerre froide. La Russie compte exporter 200.000 fusils d'assaut Kalachnikov par an aux Etats-Unis, rapporte lundi l'agence de presse russe Ria Novosti.

Le contrat officialisant cet échange doit être signé à la mi-janvier à l'occasion du Shot Show 2014, salon de vendeurs d'armes ayant lieu du 14 au 17 janvier à Las Vegas (Etats-Unis).

"Le consortium Kalachnikov, qui fait partie du holding russe de hautes technologies Rostec, signera un accord exclusif avec Russian Weapon Company (RWC) sur les livraisons d'armes aux Etats-Unis", a ainsi indiqué Elena Filatova, porte-parole du consortium Kalachnikov. "Selon Pavel Kolegov, directeur général adjoint pour les ventes et le marketing du consortium, Kalachnikov pourrait vendre 200.000 fusils d'assaut par an aux Etats-Unis via son distributeur exclusif RWC."

 

Une filiale de Rostec

Le consortium Kalachnikov, anciennement connu sous le nom de Groupe de recherche et de production Ijmach, est une filiale du holding nationale russe Rostec, créée en 2007 pour favoriser le développement, la fabrication et l'exportation de la production industrielle de haute technologie à usage civil et militaire.

Le Groupe de recherche Ijmach, lui, date d'avant l'ère soviétique. Fondé en 1807 à Ijevsk, par le tsar Alexandre 1er, c'est lui qui a fabriqué le célèbre AK-47. ll collabore avec RWC depuis deux ans, et 90% des armes qu'il destine à l'exportation ont pour destination les Etats-Unis.

 

Bond des exportations

Il y a un an, France Tv Info expliquait que l'entreprise de l'Oural avait connu un bond de 60% de ses exportations sur les neuf premiers mois de l'année 2012, grâce à la demande américaine. Le marché outre-atlantique plébiscitait en effet le faible coût des armes russes, disponibles à partir de 300 euros pièce.

En deux ans, la société Ijmach, avait multiplié par douze son volume à l'exportation, qui atteint 12 millions d'euros, expliquait France TV Info. La société voyait dans l'exportation un moyen de faire face à la baisse de la demande de l'armée russe.

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 13:25
Airbus Helicopters obtient un joli succès en Bolivie

 

 

15/01/2014 Michel Cabirol  - laTribune.fr

 

La filiale hélicoptériste d'Airbus Group a décroché une commande de six Super Puma en Bolivie pour plus de 100 millions d'euros six mois après la brouille entre Paris et La Paz autour de l'affaire Snowden. Airbus Helicopters a vendu sa dernière version AS332 C1e à l'armée de l'air bolivienne.

 

C'est un joli petit contrat pour Airbus Helicopters (ex-Eurocopter). Selon des sources concordantes, la filiale d'Airbus Group, a vendu à la Bolivie six Super Puma AS332 C1e, son tout nouvel appareil low cost lancé en 2012. Un contrat estimé à plus de 100 millions d'euros et  qui est comptabilisé dans les prises de commandes de 2013. Il a été signé en décembre. Deux Super Puma AS332 C1e seront livrés dès cette année à la Fuerza Aérea Boliviana, l'armée de l'air bolivienne, qui disposera de ses six appareils avant la fin 2016. Ils serviront à la lutte contre les narco-trafiquants et dans le domaine de la sécurité civile.

Un contrat qui était suspendu à la réconciliation franco-bolivienne. Ce qui a été le cas en septembre dernier entre les deux présidents Evo Morales et François Hollande lors d'une rencontre à New York en marge de l'assemblée générale des Nations Unies. Le président français avait affirmé que l'incident survenu à la fin juin entre La Paz et Paris autour de l'affaire Snowden était "clos".

 

Un appareil très compétitif à l'export

L'AS332 C1e est une nouvelle version de l'hélicoptère Super Puma d'Eurocopter. Il offre une configuration standardisée permettant de réduire les délais de livraison, avec des coûts d'exploitation et de maintenance très compétitifs. Cet appareil va permettre à Airbus Helicopters de mieux rivaliser face à hélicoptères russes tel que Mi-171A2. Des options sur ce Super Puma sont également disponibles. Cet hélicoptère bimoteur de moyen tonnage, qui dispose d'un long rayon d'action, offre aux opérateurs une capacité de charge utile pouvant atteindre 4,3 tonnes, pour le transport d'équipements et de passagers, ainsi que pour les missions de recherche-sauvetage.

 Grâce à son moteur Makila 1A1 (Turbomeca) ainsi qu'une avionique et un pilote automatique de 4 axes de dernière génération, l'AS332 C1e peut intervenir dans les conditions d'opération les plus rigoureuses. "Au-delà de ces caractéristiques, l'AS332 C1e offre également un excellent taux de disponibilité, avec des coûts de maintenance et d'exploitation optimisés", expliquait Airbus Helicopters.

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 12:55
Création d’une chaire « Economie de défense »

 

15 janvier Aerobuzz.fr

 

L’IHEDN (Institut des hautes études de défense nationale) vient de se doter d’une nouvelle chaire sur le thème de l’économie de Défense. Portée par MBDA, Safran, Thales et Renault Trucks, elle vise à éclairer le plus largement et objectivement possible les impacts économiques des décisions politiques en matière de défense (coût des conflits, lancements de programmes, soutien aux filières industrielles, choix ou non de coopérations internationales, etc.). Elle s’intéressera tout particulièrement à certaines caractéristiques clés de l’écosystème Défense : l’emploi, l’innovation, les modes de financement, la compétitivité, les complémentarités duales, les exportations. Elle constituera une passerelle entre le monde académique et la Défense en diffusant une connaissance objective et indépendante sur l’impact de la défense dans notre économie. Elle vise aussi à attirer vers le domaine de l’économie de défense des jeunes chercheurs de talent et à animer un réseau académique et scientifique dans ce domaine.

 

Jean Belin, titulaire de la chaire et maître de conférences à l’université Bordeaux 4, précise que « la chaire "Économie de défense" a le triple objectif d’augmenter la production de recherches universitaires en économie de défense, de fédérer et de diffuser la pensée économique de défense et enfin de former et d’éclairer les décideurs publics et privés. »

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16 janvier 2014 4 16 /01 /janvier /2014 12:50
L'Etat vend 1% d'Airbus Group (ex-EADS)

Désormais, la France et l'Allemagne détiendront 11% des droits de vote d'Airbus Group, et l'Espagne 4%.

 

16/01/2014 latribune.fr

 

Le ministère de l'Economie et des Finances a annoncé mercredi la cession par l'Etat français d'environ un pour cent du capital de l'ex-EADS, ramenant sa participation à 11% des droits de vote, à parité avec l'Etat allemand.

 

L'Etat cède 1% d'Airbus Group, soit quelque 451 millions d'euros, selon le cours de l'action en clôture de la Bourse mercredi. Annoncée par Bercy, cette cession d'environ huit millions d'actions dans l'ex-EADS par le biais d'un placement institutionnel accéléré fait suite à un accord bilatéral entre l'Allemagne et la France, précise le ministère dans un communiqué. Bercy précise:

 

    "Ces ressources viendront notamment compenser le financement exceptionnel de 1,5 milliard d'euros du nouveau Programme d'Investissements d'Avenir au bénéfice de l'excellence technologique de l'industrie de défense, prévu par la Loi de Programmation Militaire".

 

Cela ne modifie pas la place de l'Etat dans la gouvernance d'Airbus

 

Cela dit, l'ajustement à la baisse de la participation de la France, pour s'aligner avec celle de l'Allemagne, ne modifie pas la place de l'Etat dans la gouvernance d'Airbus Group, dont il entend demeurer un actionnaire de référence à moyen terme, ajoute le ministère.

 

Désormais, la France et l'Allemagne détiendront 11% des droits de vote d'Airbus Group, et l'Espagne 4%.

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15 janvier 2014 3 15 /01 /janvier /2014 12:35
German Navy Type 212 submarine

German Navy Type 212 submarine

 

 

January 07, 2014 By Otfried Nassauer and Gordon Repinski – Spiegel.de

 

The German defense industry is increasingly looking to Asia as a growing market for its products. Conflicts in the Far East have led to a demand for the kind of giant -- and expensive -- submarines that come from shipyards in northern Germany.

 

The special fascination of ThyssenKrupp's new Type 218SG submarine is not immidiately apparent. It only becomes clear at the sight of the delicate, detailed engineering at its stern. That's where the "air independent propulsion system" is installed, connected directly with a gearless Permasyn motor. Built to glide through the sea almost noiselessly, the submarine is quieter and more durable than any other conventional model.

 

With fuel-cell drive and lithium-ion batteries, such a submarine can stay deployed at sea for more than 80 days and spend four weeks at a time under the surface.

 

These are ideal capabilities for a war machine built to function in the depths of seemingly endless waters, over routes that can be navigated without interruption for longer than ever before. It is a design suitable for the largest of all oceans: the Pacific.

 

At the end of November, Singapore, an authoritarian city-state on the edge of the crisis regions of the West Pacific, ordered the first two Type 218SG submarines to be released by German firm ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems (TKMS). The custom-designed machines are to be delivered to the Singapore Navy by 2020. The deal cost the country €1.6 billion ($2.18 billion), which will go directly into the German economy.

 

German specialists will offer training for the crew and logistical support as part of the deal, in accord with industry standards. Thanks to German engineering, the Singapore Navy will become the most modern in the region.

 

An Arms Race in the Pacific

 

The deal is also a contribution to the arms race for military dominance in the Pacific. To underscore its interests, China has already sent its first aircraft carrier cruising over the South China Sea and presented a stealth jet. Japan and the United States are strengthening their engagement in the West Pacific. Vietnam is arming itself with submarines, frigates and fighter jets. Singapore's neighbor Malaysia is involved in scuffles over islands with the Chinese People's Republic. Even Russia is involved: Last summer they engaged in joint naval exercises with China -- in the Sea of Japan.

 

The entire region is expected to become one of the world's most important focal points for security policy. The conflicts that play out there relate to fishing areas, island groups and large mineral deposits believed to lie at the bottom of the ocean.

 

It is a state of affairs that promises big business for the German defense industry. Next to the Gulf region, the Pacific is increasingly becoming one of the few global growth markets for defense firms. According to a 2013 report published by the Swedish research institute SIPRI, three of the worlds five biggest arms importers are West Pacific states: China, South Korea and Singapore. For the German economy, the sale of large submarines is especially lucrative. Each vessel costs €400-800 million, depending on size.

 

The German government supports the business with benevolence. Each contract is given its own federal export guarantee. In the case of Singapore, the German state guaranteed the value of the submarines. It's a risk that pays off: In the end, the state also profits off global exports through tax revenue. In addition, long-running jobs for the North German HDW shipyard, a subsidiary of ThyssenKrupp, means secure jobs for the otherwise structurally weak region at the Kiel Fjord.

 

Merkel's Business-Friendly Approach

 

Thus far, when it comes to arms export policy, the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel has been as business-friendly as possible. German security interests have tended to trump the human rights situation in recipient countries. The coalition agreement between Merkel's conservatives and their governing partners, the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), also failed to resolve the issue, long a point of contention between the two parties. "An arms race is taking place in the Pacific," said Rolf Mützenich, the SPD's foreign policy point man in parliament. "We must look into this carefully." Human rights, said Mützenich, should have priority over security concerns.

 

In the case of the submarines, however, everything is still chugging along in the business-friendly direction: The deal was carefully prepared in the summer. On June 3 of last year, Steffen Kampeter, a state secretary in Germany's Finance Ministry, wrote a letter to Petra Merkel, chair of the parliament's Budget Committee for the SPD, approving the government export guarantee.

 

Kampeter asked that Merkel treat the documents as if they were confidential, because ultimately "the exporter is in direct competition with suppliers from France and Sweden." It was valuable "not to compromise" the "competitive environment." In that, they were successful.

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15 janvier 2014 3 15 /01 /janvier /2014 12:35
ForceSHIELD Integrated Air Defence system and STARStreak missiles for Indonesian Ministry of Defence

 

Wed, 15/01/2014 Thales

 

In addition to the supply of STARStreak short-range air defence missiles, the system comprises CONTROLMaster200 radar and weapon coordination systems, RAPIDRanger mobile weapon systems and Lightweight Multiple Launchers (LML), as well as associated communications, training and support equipment.

“This deal worth over £100m is great news for the UK and the aerospace industry…

Victor Chavez, CEO of Thales UK, said: “Thales is the only European defence contractor with the in-depth knowledge and range of advanced technologies to deliver a leading-edge integrated air defence solution such as ForceSHIELD. This solution for the Indonesian Army marks a new approach to air defence in that it provides a complete turnkey solution comprising latest-generation ‘sensor to effects’ technologies. I would like to express my gratitude to the Prime Minister for his personal support on this project and the support of the government – it makes a huge difference to industry and our customers.”

The British Prime Minister, the Rt Hon. David Cameron MP, said: “This deal worth over £100m is great news for the UK and the aerospace industry, and a strong vote of confidence in this Government’s long-term economic plan. It will help secure highly-skilled jobs in Northern Ireland and throughout the supply chain. This is precisely the reason why I go on these trade missions to countries like Indonesia, to drum up jobs and investment for our country, and I’m delighted my trip has resulted in a clear win for Thales.”

For the realisation of this programme, Thales will increase its existing industrial cooperation with the Republic of Indonesia, and has signed an agreement with the Indonesian company PT LEN Industri. The Group will continue to develop a long-term partnership with the Indonesian industry on future programmes in both the military and civil sectors.

 

Note to editors: About Thales’s ForceSHIELD solution

Thales’s ForceSHIELD solution is based on customising and combining a range of product lines such as radars, communications, engagement and fire control systems, launchers and missiles to meet front-line users’ needs.  This approach provides highly-effective capabilities for its customers to meet the increasing array of asymmetric and conventional air threats in today’s security environment.

The CONTROLMaster200 comprises the latest generation solid-state radar, capable of detecting and tracking 200 targets simultaneously out to ranges up to 250km. It incorporates the CONTROLView engagement control system that evaluates threats, assigns weapons, and coordinates combat management activity – enabling complex and critical decisions to be made faster and with greater precision and security.

The RAPIDRanger is a unique lightweight vehicle-based launcher and fire control system, which can be integrated into a network-enabled force structure and coordinated with a variety of Command and Control systems. Equipped with the STARStreak high-velocity missile, RAPIDRanger has the ability to defeat a wide variety of air threats, including ground attack aircraft, pop-up Attack Helicopters, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and cruise missiles.  The STARStreak missile operates at a speed in excess of Mach 3 to defeat fast-moving threats and those with short unmasking times.  The three-dart ‘hittile’ configuration maximises lethality and the highly-accurate laser beam riding guidance enables engagement of low-signature targets and is immune to all known countermeasures.

 

About Thales and Thales UK

Thales is a global technology leader in the Aerospace, Transportation and Defence & Security markets. In 2012, the company generated revenues of €14.2 billion (equivalent to £ 11.5 billion) with 65,000 employees in 56 countries. With its 25,000 engineers and researchers, Thales has a unique capability to design, develop and deploy equipment, systems and services that meet the most complex security requirements. Thales has an exceptional international footprint, with operations around the world working with customers and local partners.

Thales UK employs 7,500 staff based at 35 locations. In 2012 Thales UK's revenues were around £1.3 billion.

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14 janvier 2014 2 14 /01 /janvier /2014 08:55
Thales begins development of New Generation Laser Designation Pod

 

Fri, 10/01/2014 thalesgroup.com

 

The French defence procurement agency DGA has awarded Thales with the contract to develop the New Generation Laser Designation Pod (PDL NG). This latest milestone is a follow on from the riskreduction phase led throughout 2013 and series production is expected to begin in 2018.

 

Thales will develop the PDL NG that will provide the French air forces with new day/night imaging and engagement capabilities in complex theatres of operations. The PDL NG will be designed to integrate with both the Rafale and Mirage 2000D fighter aircraft.

 

The risk-reduction phase, the first step in the development of any programme, confirmed the system’s architecture, its high level of functional integration, reliability and the development schedule.

 

The awarding of this development contract confirms the importance of optronics in future air combat systems and acknowledges the technical and operational expertise that Thales has acquired on laser reconnaissance and designation systems over the past 40 years.

“Thales is proud of the confidence that the DGA and the French air force have shown in choosing us to develop this new system. The PDL NG is the result of close and constructive collaboration between specifiers, users and Thales. It will provide air forces an effective and competitive system. The award of the development contract confirms the government’s support for France’s airborne optronics sector and its engineering and industrial capabilities.”

Gil Michielin, Vice-President of Thales’s optronics business

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13 janvier 2014 1 13 /01 /janvier /2014 21:30
French Air Force A400M

French Air Force A400M

 

Jan. 13, 2014 - By BURAK EGE BEKDIL – Defense News

 

ANKARA — The first Turkish A400M built by the multinational Airbus Military consortium arrived in Turkey in December and has been undergoing acceptance tests, procurement officials here said.

 

Turkey plans to receive a batch of 10 aircraft in the next two to three years. Turkish officials say the A400M will cost Ankara $1.5 billion, and the same amount would go to the country’s local industry in work share.

 

A procurement official familiar with the program said there have been a couple of “minor problems” with the first aircraft and the acceptance tests have not yet been completed. “These are not major difficulties and we hope the tests would be completed soon,” the official said.

 

The aircraft arrived at the 221st Air Fleet in Kayseri in central Turkey.

 

Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) is manufacturing the main fuselage for all 174 A400Ms to be produced as part of this international program. Turkey, a 5.5 percent shareholder of the program, hopes business for local companies will increase as more aircraft are produced for export markets.

 

Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Spain, Turkey and Britain joined in the program that, together with export customer Malaysia, has garnered 174 orders.

 

Among the other significant A400M operators, Britain is scheduled to get its first aircraft next year and German deliveries will follow in 2015.

 

Earlier, the A400M venture overcame serious technical problems, delivery delays and budget overruns that almost saw Airbus and the partner nations scrap the program. But since then, the tone has changed.

 

The aircraft was conceived in the 1980s to meet a looming shortfall in military transport capacity among the seven European NATO nations. The A400M competes with the Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules turboprop and the larger Boeing C-17 cargo jet.

 

The turboprop aircraft has a payload capability of up to 37 tons or 116 paratroopers, and can also serve as an air-to-air tanker for fast jets and other aircraft.

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13 janvier 2014 1 13 /01 /janvier /2014 08:50
KONGSBERG to deliver PROTECTOR RWS to the Irish Defence Forces

 

11.01.2014 KONGSBERG army-guide.com

 

KONGSBERG has signed a contract for the delivery of PROTECTOR Remote Weapon Stations (RWS) for the Piranha III upgrade program in Ireland.

 

The Irish Defence Force is expected to upgrade its entire Piranha III fleet with PROTECTOR M151 systems over the next five years. This contract supports the first set of these upgrade and deliveries of the PROTECTOR are planned in September 2014.

 

The PROTECTOR RWS is designed for small and medium caliber weapons and can be installed on any type of platform. It is a fully stabilized and is a combat proven system qualified for global operations. The PROTECTOR RWS protects military troops by allowing the vehicle's weapons to be operated from a protected position inside the vehicle. As of 2013 the PROTECTOR has been chosen by 17 nations and KONGSBERG continues to be the world’s leading provider of Remote Weapon Stations.

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13 janvier 2014 1 13 /01 /janvier /2014 08:20
Engility Wins $29.6 M to Support US Navy's ALRE Program

 

Jan 9, 2014 ASDNews Source : Engility Holdings, Inc.

 

Engility Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:EGL), today announced that it has been awarded a $29.6 million contract to provide engineering and technology support to the U.S. Navy’s Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (ALRE) program. This new contract, which was awarded by the Naval Air Warfare Aircraft Division based in Lakehurst, NJ, will accommodate incumbent work from other contract vehicles and is also expected to create opportunities for additional work.

 

“Our engineering teams have provided excellent service and the highest level of technical capability to the Navy’s ALRE program,” said Engility President and CEO Tony Smeraglinolo. “This contract award reflects the commitment and pride our people have in supporting Naval aviation.”

 

Read more

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 15:50
Whither the EU Internal Defense Market? Thinking Beyond “Pooling and Sharing”

 

January 9, 2014 By Christina Balis - avascent.com

 

On the heels of the December 2013 EU Council summit, Europe’s internal market  for defense deserves fresh impetus. Five years after the adoption of the first EU “Defense Package,” calls to strengthen Europe’s defense industry still lack a focused debate on the single defense market and the implementation of related legislation.

 

“The creation of this single market—without barriers, without discrimination, without domination—will ensure the pooling of resources…The single market…cannot be based exclusively on men of good will. Rules are indispensable.”

Address given by Jean Monnet at the inaugural session of the Common Assembly
11 September 1952, Strasbourg

 

The agreement on a European banking union last month inevitably overshadowed the EU Council’s conclusions on the common security and defense policy (CSDP), an event eagerly awaited since the decision in late 2012 to put defense on the EU agenda. Even so, in the end, the Council’s pronouncements held few surprises, with signs of progress as well as disappointment.1

Both tone and content of the Council’s conclusions are measured, even when the intent was to be assertive, such as when calling on member states to deepen defense cooperation. In classic EU lingo, the Council “welcomes” a number of broadly publicized proposals by the Commission and the High Representative/Head of the European Defense Agency—developing capabilities in the areas of remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS), air-to-air refueling, satellite communications and cyber security, as well as support for dual-use research—and “invites” EU bodies to coordinate or take further action (including on crisis management operations, financing of EU civilian missions, transparency in defense planning, pooled procurement, and support for SMEs). The areas where it “calls” for specific action in 2014 are few, yet noteworthy: an EU Cyber Defense Policy Framework, an EU Maritime Security Strategy, and a road map for developing defense industrial standards and certification procedures for defense equipment (the latter being a particular concern to industry in relation to cross-border RPAS operations).

The overarching theme of the Council’s final declaration can thus be summarized as pooling resources, harmonizing requirements and increasing cooperation in pursuit of greater efficiencies and policy coherence—not a small feat when considering the need to accommodate the often-competing views of 28 stakeholders. Yet, regrettably, one critical issue was left largely unaddressed: the broader internal market for defense and the lack of a corresponding industrial strategy.

 

Unfinished Business

The Council’s so-called third cluster, titled “strengthening Europe’s defense industry,” was supposed to cover topics of an economic nature, while leaving issues of policy (“increasing the effectiveness, visibility, and impact of the CSDP”) and operations (“enhancing the development of capabilities”) to the first and second clusters respectively. The Council’s conclusions include one reference to the need for a “well-functioning defence market” based on the principles of openness, equal treatment and transparency, and stresses the importance of ensuring the “full and correct implementation and application of the two defence Directives of 2009.” Ensuring greater cross-border market access to subcontractors and small and medium-sized enterprises—a particular concern of member states with smaller or less-developed defense industries—is a rare recognition of the value of the internal market. In the end, however, the Council falls short of calling for any concrete action to ensure compliance with internal market rules and merely “notes” the Commission’s intent to develop a related implementation roadmap. The Parliament’s earlier call on the Council to “provide the necessary fresh and ambitious impetus and to lay down guidelines, overarching political priorities and timelines for supporting a truly European defence technological and industrial base” went unheeded.2

The EU “Defense Package” of 2009, consisting of the two directives on defense and security procurement (2009/81/EC) and intra-EU transfers of defense-related products (2009/43/EC), was the first critical legislative step towards the creation of an internal EU defense market. In addition to delays in transposing these directives into national law, implementation has been patchy and enforcement weak at best. As of March 2013, all EU member states have at last, if unevenly, transposed the defense procurement directive.3

Directive 2009/81/EC applies to most defense purchases above a certain threshold, as well as to the procurement of sensitive equipment, works and services that have a security purpose and involve classified information. In the area of defense, the directive allows for several derogations consistent with the exceptions provided for by the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). Of these exceptions, the most notable for its potential for (and past record of) abuse is Article 346 TFEU. It allows member states to diverge from the directive’s rules if considered necessary to protect their essential security interests.

…nine months into the defense procurement directive’s full transposition, member states are still far from having embraced or correctly interpreted its intent despite progress in the area of transparency…

Avascent’s analysis of contract awards posted via the EU’s Tenders Electronic Daily suggests that nine months into the defense procurement directive’s full transposition, member states are still far from having embraced or correctly interpreted its intent despite progress in the area of transparency (see separate sidebar below). Per its July communication, the Commission intends to ensure that the directive is strictly and correctly applied moving forward.4 One hopes that such improved oversight will also come with increased enforcement powers.

The Council’s latest failure to state a clear position beyond “noting” the Commission’s intent is as disappointing as it is predictable, particularly given that both the Commission and the Parliament have been fairly explicit to date about the shortcomings in implementing existing legislation. The responsibility for making any progress in this area rests squarely with the member states.

France often gets the blame for resisting market liberalization.5 But the critique of protectionism cannot be reserved merely for the land of Colbert. Liberal-minded Denmark has been one of the worst violators of the EU’s ban on market-distorting offsets. Germany, Europe’s leading exporter (with some 60% of its exports sold to the EU), still nourishes a parochial view of its defense industrial base, as made patently clear by the 2012 aborted merger between EADS and BAE Systems.

To be fair, expecting a breakthrough at the first EU defense summit in five years would have been unrealistic. The latest debates about the EU’s strategic priorities and its stated ambition for more “autonomous action” are both significant and overdue, however impractical their near-term application might seem. But a focus on increased cooperation among EU members should not eclipse much-needed efforts in the area of competition.

The term “competitive” or “competitiveness” appears seven times in the Council’s 10-page conclusions. Calls for ensuring a competitive European Defense Technological and Industrial Base (EDTIB) are de rigueur in all proclamations on CSDP. Yet, competition in defense has for too long been the creed that dares not speak its name. Progress toward a truly functioning EU internal defense market is urgently needed. It cannot wait until June 2015, when the Council is expected to assess progress on its recent conclusions, or even until summer 2016, the due date for the Commission’s implementation report on the two defense directives.

 

Towards a “Second Defense Package”

In many ways, 2014 is a transition year for Europe. While no major national elections are expected this year, elites in Brussels will be undergoing a major facelift, with European Parliament elections scheduled in May followed by tough negotiations to form a new Commission. In addition, the race to replace Denmark’s Anders Fogh Rasmussen as secretary general of NATO (after presiding over this last NATO summit in early September) and Britain’s Catherine Ashton as the EU’s high representative for foreign affairs and security policy, will only intensify in the next six months leading to a decision before year’s end. On top of this game of musical chairs come the critical Scottish and Catalan referenda on independence next September and November, respectively. This is no light agenda for the Greek and Italian governments who assume the rotating six-month presidency of the EU Council of Ministers in 2014.

Transitions, however, also offer an opportunity to refocus certain debates. Five years after the first Defense Package was adopted by the Council, a fresh look is needed at both progress to date and required changes for the future. Similar to current discussions on the EU battlegroups and the Lisbon Treaty’s clause on “permanent structured cooperation”—both of which remain inoperative—the internal defense market deserves a more deliberate review to ensure its proper implementation and evolution over time. The following three propositions could serve as a starting point for such a discussion in 2014.

 

Prioritize the Single Defense Market

Given broad recognition among EU member states that CSDP should be a recurrent agenda topic at EU summits—Germany’s new coalition, for example, has called for holding such reviews annually—2014 offers an opportunity to put this commitment to the test. The Italian EU presidency during the second half of the year, supported by early discussions during the current Greek presidency, could propose the single defense market as an agenda topic leading to the December 2014 EU Council summit.

 

Give Competition a Voice

The EU’s competition policy treats at length a wide array of sectors, including energy and environment, financial services, agri-food industry, transport, telecoms, and pharmaceuticals. Following last year’s successful transposition of the defense procurement directive, it would seem timely for the Commission to dedicate a section on the defense industry in its 2014 competition report. This would send a message that defense is as much a part of the EU’s internal market as any other industry that claims €96 billion in annual turnover, more than 1.3 million direct and indirect jobs across Europe, and a multiplier of 1.6 on GDP.6  It might also spur discussion on the drafting of a much-needed EDTIB strategy, exposing weaknesses in national regulatory frameworks and the application of state aid and merger control provisions.

 

Evolve the Policy Framework

Given the ink is barely dry on the EU’s first Defense Package, some might warn against putting forward additional measures or amendments. Such caution, however, goes against the experience of European market integration. The EU’s single market is a palimpsest of evolving legal and policy frameworks—not more so in commoditized markets than in (once) highly protected and fragmented markets such as transport, energy and telecommunications. The liberalization of air transport, for example, took three successive “packages” between 1987 and 1993, and the EU has since continued to evolve and consolidate related legislation. While practical reasons exclude the passing of new legislation anytime soon, it is not too early to start a debate on potential amendments to Directive 2009/81/EC that take into account important proposals around innovative procurement techniques, facilitating cross-border contracting and joint procurement, as well as further improving transparency of existing processes.

 

The EU internal market is arguably the  greatest success of the European integration project and the principal driver behind Europe’s continued relevance in the world. All of the EU’s impressive achievements—from securing internal peace to projecting a leading role in world trade—can in some measure be traced back to the evolving application of open market principles to intra-Community affairs. Just as post-World War II political reconciliation on the continent was founded on economic integration, so an effective common policy on security and defense requires its own single market logic to stand on. A basic recognition by EU leaders in 2014 that “trading and competing” is as important as “pooling and sharing” would serve as tangible proof of their latest affirmation that “defense matters.”

 

 

NOTES

  1. European Council, Conclusions, EUCO 217/13, Brussels, 20 December 2013.
  2. European Parliament, Committee on Foreign Affairs, Report on the European Defence Technological and Industrial Base (2013/2125(INI)), Rapporteur: Michael Gahler, 29 October 2013.
  3. The due date for the implementation (and full transposition) of the transfer directive was June 2012.
  4. European Commission, A New Deal for European Defence: Towards a More Competitive and Efficient Defence and Security Sector, COM (2013) 542, July 2013, p. 10.
  5. French president Nicolas Sarkozy’s 2012 call for a “Buy European Act” may have been targeted less at Brussels than at Washington, but it reflects a broader underlying unease with economic liberalization, as well as the need to counter a growing, reflexive anti-Europeanism from across Europe’s far left and far right political spectrum. The concept of “Economic Defense Operator in Europe,” recently proposed by the Parliament, certainly merits further discussion but not without due consideration of the transatlantic dimension of the defense market, which remains the most logical extension of the EU single market, however gloomy the near-term prospects for transatlantic defense industrial cooperation. (For a thoughtful discussion of related issues, see Christian Mölling, “Europe, the Transatlantic Defense Industry, and How to Make the Right Choice?” GMF Policy Brief, November 2013.)
  6. European Parliament, Directorate-General for Parliamentary Research Services, Cost of Non-Europe Report, CoNE 4/2013, December 2013.

 

Download: Whither the EU Internal Defense Market? Thinking Beyond “Pooling and Sharing”

 

About the Author

Christina Balis leads Avascent’s European operations. Based in Paris, she supports corporate and financial clients operating in or looking to expand to Europe and adjacent geographies. She has experience providing strategic advisory services, assessing market opportunities, and supporting merger and acquisition activities across a diverse set of defense, civil, and commercial markets. Dr. Balis worked for a number of years as a consultant with Avascent before transitioning to industry. Prior to rejoining Avascent in late 2011, she was vice president for strategy and corporate development at Serco Inc., the US subsidiary of international service company Serco Group plc. Previously, she was a fellow in the Europe Program of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, DC. She holds a joint B.A. in European Business Administration from the ESB Business School (Reutlingen, Germany) and Middlesex University (London, UK) and a M.A. and a Ph.D. in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (Bologna, Italy, and Washington, DC).

 

About Avascent

 

The European Defense Industrial Base Forum is an Avascent initiative to explore and debate issues critical to the performance and long-term viability of Europe’s defense establishment. Designed to engage and inform representatives from both the private and public sectors, including the financial community and academic institutions, this forum seeks to provide senior executives and decision-makers with objective, nonpartisan analyses to support strategic action across Europe’s diverse defense technology and industrial base.

Comments, questions, and requests to receive future updates may be sent to: europe@avascent.com

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 12:35
China pushes ahead with military helicopter programmes

 

 

9 Jan 2014 By: Greg Waldron - FG

 

Recent images from the Chinese internet suggest that Beijing is making significant progress with its military helicopter programmes.

The most recent batch of images show a Harbin Z-19 with what appears to be a mast-mounted radar system. The Z-19, which is roughly comparable to lighter attack helicopters such as the Airbus Helicopters Tiger, is capable of carrying anti-tank missiles and is usually equipped with a chin-mounted cannon.

It is unclear if the mast-mounted system is, indeed, a true radar, or merely a mock-up to test the aerodynamics of the system. Mast-mounted radars such as that carried by the Boeing AH-64E Apache Longbow greatly enhance an attack helicopter’s ability to identify and engage targets at long ranges.

 

The Z-19 is one of two dedicated Chinese attack helicopter programmes. The other is the heavier CAIC WZ-10, which is roughly comparable to the Apache.

The Z-19 development follows images last month that appeared to show the first flight of a locally-developed utility helicopter closely resembling the Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk. The aircraft is similar in layout to the US S-70-series platform, but has a five-bladed main rotor, as opposed to four.

Following the emergence of the images, a spokesman from the Chinese defence ministry confirmed that Beijing is developing a new helicopter. Chinese military experts have unofficially labelled the new utility type as the Harbin Z-20.

The Chinese army still operates 20 S-70C that it received in the mid-1980s, says Flightglobal's Ascend Online Fleets database.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 12:35
Northrop expands support for Japan's Hawkeyes

 

Tokyo Jan 9, 2013 (UPI)

 

Northrop Grumman Corp. has signed a 5-year deal with AAR Corp. and Sumitomo Corp. to set up a just-in-time inventory management process for Japan's E-2C Hawkeye program.

 

Northrop works with its partners to supply airframe parts and accessories for its early warning E-2C aircraft, with options to increase support as needed.

 

"Japan is our largest international Hawkeye operator," Bart LaGrone, vice president of E-2/C-2 programs at Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems, said.

 

"The demand for E-2 Hawkeye airborne early warning and control is even greater now than when the systems were first delivered to Japan Air Self Defense Force in 1984," he said.

 

AAR is an international aviation distribution and logistics business based in Wood Dale, Ill. Sumitomo is a resources and commodities trading business based in Tokyo.

 

Japan acquired its E-2C fleet initially to provide over-the-horizon early warning against low-flying aircraft. Japan's high-wing twin turbo-prop fleet has 115,000 accident-free flight hours.

 

"Northrop Grumman will continue to provide E-2C support to JASDF and other E-2C operators as the U.S. Navy begins its transition to the E-2D advanced Hawkeye in fiscal year 2015," LaGrone said.

 

Northrop's other industry partners for Japan's Hawkeye fleet include Toshiba Corp. and Kawasaki Heavy Industries.

 

Grumman Corp. -- later Northrop Grumman -- began producing the Hawkeye in 1964 for the U.S. Navy as a replacement for Navy's snub-nose radial piston E-1 Tracer, also made by Grumman.

 

The Tracer, the Navy's first purpose-built airborne early warning aircraft, entered service in 1958. It was replaced by the more modern E-2 Hawkeye in the early 1970s.

 

Taiwan also operates Hawkeye aircraft, purchasing four E-2T variants in late 1995.

 

The Taiwan government sent two of them back to the United States in 2010 for upgrading to E-2K standard. The other two were sent back for upgrading and returned last year, Focus Taiwan newschannel reported.

 

Singapore had four Hawkeye aircraft, but phased them out in favor of the early warning variant of the twin jet engine Gulfstream G550.

 

Singapore took delivery of its General Dynamics Gulfstreams, powered by two Rolls Royce BR710C4-11 turbofan engines, from 2009 to 2011.

 

Northrop announced in October it had picked up a $34.5 million contract from the U.S. Navy to upgrade the French navy's fleet of three E-2C Hawkeyes with an upgraded friend-or-foe identification system.

 

The system will increase commonality and interoperability between the French fleet and the U.S. Navy's E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft, Northrop said in a written statement.

 

The French Navy has operated its fleet since 2000 and is the only military other than the U.S. Navy to operate its Hawkeyes from an aircraft carrier.

 

The first U.S.-France carrier-to-carrier flight was in May 2001 when a U.S. Navy Hawkeye flew from the deck of the USS Enterprise to the deck of the French carrier Charles de Gaulle.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:50
German weapons firms : No farewell to arms

 

Jan 11th 2014 economist.com

 

Political pressure and bribery allegations are unlikely to hurt Germany’s exporters of military equipment

 

Since the second world war, Germany has rarely sent soldiers to combat zones. But it exports a lot of weapons: more than Britain, France or any other country besides America and Russia. Some German makers of military gear are part of civilian industrial giants, such as Airbus Group (which has dropped its ungainly old name, EADS, to adopt the brand of its commercial-aircraft business), and ThyssenKrupp, a steelmaker. But the biggest German company known mainly for weapons, Rheinmetall, is just 26th in the world league of arms-exporting firms. And Krauss Maffei Wegmann (KMW), which makes the Leopard 2 tank (pictured), is 54th.

 

Germans are, in general, proud of their export prowess. But although foreign sales of weaponry bring in almost €1 billion ($1.4 billion) a year, they are a delicate subject, and lately beset by bad press. Several German firms are accused of bribery in Greece. A former defence official there has said that of €8m in bribes he took, €3.2m came from German firms, including Wegmann (now part of KMW) and Rheinmetall. On January 3rd KMW’s alleged middleman was detained after a court hearing. The firm itself denies any bribery. Atlas, a maker of naval weapons owned jointly by Airbus and ThyssenKrupp, is under fire too. A former representative in Athens has reportedly admitted to bribery; the company says it is investigating the matter.

 

On another front, the industry faces criticism over the countries it sells to—most recently over a deal to sell Leopard 2s to Saudi Arabia. Arms sales to anywhere other than NATO and “NATO-equivalent” countries are in principle forbidden. But the Federal Security Council, headed by Chancellor Angela Merkel, can approve exceptions when foreign policy dictates, as long as they do not harm human rights.

 

Peace campaigners fear that the exceptions are becoming less exceptional. NATO countries’ budgets are being squeezed, so Germany’s armsmakers are looking farther abroad. Rheinmetall, for example, has a target of 50% of exports outside Europe by 2015. Asia is a growing target: Singapore recently signed a €1.6 billion deal for ThyssenKrupp submarines.

 

German small arms are also popular. Heckler & Koch’s G3 rifle (together with its variants) is the world’s most popular after the Russian AK-47. Germany was a leader in pushing the UN to restrict the flow of small arms to war-torn countries. But such weapons leak across borders nonetheless. This is why Helmut Schmidt, a former chancellor, in December urged Germany to restrict arms exports, calling gun deaths a slow-motion Hiroshima and Nagasaki. His fellow Social Democrat, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, promised to restrict sales if his party made it into government after last September’s elections. It did: Mr Steinmeier is now foreign minister, and sits on the Federal Security Council.

 

But Germany’s arms exports are probably in little danger, since they have the same reputation for reliability as its cars and other industrial goods. Even Pieter Wezeman of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, a critic of weapons sales, compares a Heckler & Koch gun to a high-quality Leica camera. Though German soldiers mostly stay clear of combat zones, German weapons are battle-tested; Leopard tanks in the former Yugoslavia and Afghanistan, for example.

 

Moreover, there are ways to lessen the controversy of selling things used to wage war. For example, making guns for a fighter jet assembled elsewhere is less visible than selling a German-made tank. Military transport, logistics, surveillance and protective equipment together account for five times as much of German defence firms’ output as weapons and ammunition—and are less likely to be blamed for civilian casualties. Stephan Boehm, an analyst at Commerzbank, sees such non-lethal materiel as a bright spot for German exporters. The flagging fortunes of Rheinmetall, in particular, should be restored by strong sales of the armoured transporters it produces in a joint venture with MAN, a lorry-maker.

 

Critics say the government is too willing to let arms firms export to dodgy regimes. The Federation of German Security & Defence Industries argues that strong exports are crucial to spread the development costs of the equipment Germany needs to defend itself. This would be less of a problem, the lobby group admits, if Europe’s fragmented defence industry were consolidated; it says the government should not have vetoed a proposal last year to merge EADS with BAE Systems of Britain. Weapons account for less than 1% of Germany’s exports. But it is a 1% that it, like other countries, is loth to give up.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:50
Welcome on board: Airbus Helicopters takes off!

 

Jan 8, 2014 ASDNews Source : Airbus Helicopters

 

The rebranding of Eurocopter as Airbus Helicopters, effective today, marks a new era in the history of the company, which joins Airbus and Airbus Defence & Space within the new Airbus Group – the global leader in aerospace, defense and related services.

 

Airbus Helicopters will benefit from and enrich the Airbus brand as it develops, manufactures, markets and supports a diversified and highly capable rotorcraft product line.

 

“This rebranding works hand in hand with our ongoing transformation, which is now bolstered by the Airbus brand’s strong foundation in innovation, quality and industrial excellence,” said Guillaume Faury, President of Airbus Helicopters. “Both of these together will serve our ambition of setting the industry standard in terms of safety, mission capability and performance for our operators around the world.”

 

The naming and designations of Airbus Helicopters’ products remain at present unchanged in the new branding, while the company’s primary website has migrated to a new identity: www.airbushelicopters.com. Airbus Helicopter team members will remain reachable via their current e-mail coordinates, with the migration to an airbus.com root address occurring this summer.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:35
photo Livefist

photo Livefist

India chose Dassualt's Rafale for its medium multi-role combat aircraft in 2012

 

January 9, 2014, by Neelam Mathews AIN Defense Perspective

 

With national elections looming in India, speculation is growing that contracts for the long-delayed medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA), as well as the multi-role tanker transport (MRTT), could soon be signed. However, the MMRCA pact might cover only the supply of 18 Dassault Rafale aircraft from the French production line, leaving further negotiations for the remaining 108 required to be concluded by the new government. India announced its choice of the Rafale in January 2012. But negotiations subsequently stalled over offsets, the transfer of technology and the role of Hindustan Aeronautics (HAL).

 

Delays in procurement are taking a toll on military force levels as Indian Air Force (IAF) squadrons deplete. This has resulted in pressure on the Ministry of Defense to increase the pace for awarding pending contracts. A government code of conduct prevents any contracts being awarded within 45 days of an election. The national election is expected to be called by March, also the end of the financial year.

 

“If the contract is signed soon, it will be nothing but a paper deal that ensures commitment of the government. We can expect delays after the first 18 aircraft, since the remaining fighters will be built under license with transfer of technology. The government wants to ensure the contract is penned so that the [basic choice] cannot be questioned by subsequent governments,” said an official associated with the project. An official at the MoD noted that signature of the MMRCA contract would restore the confidence of international OEMs, which has been shaken by the recent scandal over the AW101 procurement.

 

Following lengthy discussions, HAL is thought to have now agreed with Dassault on the question of Tier 1 suppliers, including aerostructures.

 

An IAF official said that a new refueling tanker is a priority. A meeting between the Indian MoD and Airbus Defence and Space on the MRTT that was delayed last year following the death of the senior acquisition official has been scheduled for mid-January, AIN has learned from an informed source close to the program. Since the A330MRTT can also be used as a pure transporter for 300 troops, plus a cargo payload of up to 45 tons (99,000 pounds), or to accommodate up to 130 stretchers for medical evacuation, it will bring immediate benefits to the IAF. “This contract has no political overtones or baggage attached to it,” said the IAF official.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:30
Cubic Awarded USD 25M Contract for Air Combat Training Equipment

 

 

Jan 8, 2014 ASDNews Source : Cubic Corporation

 

Cubic Defense Systems, a subsidiary of Cubic Corporation (NYSE: CUB) announced today it has been awarded a contract worth $25 million from the U.S. Air Force for its P5 Combat Training System (P5CTS) to meet international requirements, including delivery to several Middle East allies as part of F-15 and F-16 foreign military sales contracts.

 

“This large contract combines various FMS requirements to provide the lowest possible cost to our customers in a tight budgetary environment,” said Dave Schmitz, president of Cubic Defense Systems. “This contract extends the breadth of P5 sales in the Middle East and should yield long-term operations and maintenance opportunities.”

 

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:20
GATR Technologies awarded USD 440M Contract with US Army for Inflatable Satellite Communications Antennas

 

Jan 8, 2014 ASDNews Source : GATR Technologies

 

GATR Technologies ® announced today that it has been awarded a 5 year Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract by the U.S. Army Project Manager, Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (PM WIN-T), Product Manager Satellite Communications (PdM SATCOM), Commercial SATCOM Terminal Program (CSTP) Office. This contract ceiling value of $440,045,436 will enable the United States Army, the United States Marine Corps, and other Commands and Services to procure GATR’s WGS certified Inflatable Satellite Antennas (ISA) and associated hardware, services and support. GATR President Paul Gierow remarked, “This contract validates the sustained adoption of GATR’s technology by the Warfighter and signifies our evolution as provider of integrated solutions.”

 

The key innovation of GATR’s antenna is a flexible parabolic dish mounted within an inflatable sphere, reducing weight and packaged volume by as much as 80 percent and thereby improving the agility of deployed military and disaster response personnel. The GATR ISA also costs less to procure than conventional deployable systems, and dramatically cuts transportation expenses due to its lightweight design. Finally, the larger dish size enables more efficient use of satellite bandwidth capacity, increasing bandwidth for users and allowing more users to communicate simultaneously. U.S. and Allied militaries have fielded over 300 GATR ISA terminals since 2008, proving the technology’s strength and reliability.

 

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:20
Lockheed Martin Advances Affordability Across US Navy's Aegis Weapons System To Secure Multi-Year Contract

 

Jan 8, 2014 ASDNews Source : Lockheed Martin Corporation

 

Under a recent contract order for the production of Aegis weapons systems, Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and the U.S. Navy championed an affordability approach that will drive cost savings into all phases of the program, including production, integration and test.

 

The $574 million contract includes the production of seven destroyers (DDGs 117-123) and an option for one Aegis Ashore assembly, which together will contribute to the United States Navy and Missile Defense Agency's layered defense system. The systems will operate the next generation integrated air and missile defense capability, Aegis Baseline 9, at their core.

 

"Four decades ago, the Aegis program was born at our facility in Moorestown - and today it has evolved into a national asset, both at sea and on shore," said Dale P. Bennett, executive vice president of Lockheed Martin's Mission Systems and Training business. "This contract represents the partnership and innovation of our joint government/industry team who are bringing the future of Aegis to the warfighter in an affordable and sustainable way."

 

The central component of the Lockheed Martin-developed Aegis weapons system is the SPY-1 radar, the most widely fielded naval phased array radar in the world. The team recently completed the 400th SPY-1 antenna at its Moorestown facility. The Aegis weapon system and SPY-1 radar are deployed on more than 100 ships worldwide.

 

The additional Aegis Ashore assembly will be built as part of the administration's European Phased Adaptive approach and deployed to Poland, the second Host Nation participating in the missile defense strategy. Aegis Ashore is an evolution of proven sea-based Aegis BMD capabilities and utilizes innovative adaptations for a land-based environment. The Aegis Ashore system to be deployed to Romania, the first Host Nation, recently entered its operational readiness stage in Moorestown, N.J., while the Aegis Ashore system at the Navy's Pacific Missile Range Facility in Hawaii is preparing for its first live test next year.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:20
Lockheed Martin Receives $449 Million in Contracts for JASSM® Production

 

 

Orlando, Fla., Jan. 9, 2014 Lockheed Martin

 

Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] received two production contracts on Dec. 19 totaling $449 million from the U.S. Air Force for continued production of the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) and the Extended Range (ER) variant.

 

The Lot 11 and Lot 12 contracts include production of 340 baseline missiles and 100 ER missiles. The contracts also include systems engineering, logistics support, tooling and test equipment. This is the first time the JASSM program has been awarded consecutive production lots at the same time.

 

“These contracts bring the total number of JASSM cruise missiles on contract to over 2,100, and underscore the U.S. Air Force’s and Lockheed Martin’s commitment to the program,” said Jason Denney, program director of Long Range Strike Systems at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “JASSM’s high reliability and capability allow it to defeat high-value, well-defended current and future threats.”

 

The contract awards follow several JASSM program milestones, including Foreign Military Sales contracts to integrate JASSM onto the Republic of Finland’s F/A-18C/D aircraft. They also represent the third and fourth production lots for JASSM-ER, which successfully completed U.S. Air Force Initial Operational Test and Evaluation flight testing in August 2012.

 

Armed with a dual-mode penetrator and blast-fragmentation warhead, JASSM and JASSM-ER cruise autonomously day or night in all weather conditions. Both missiles share the same powerful capabilities and stealthy characteristics, though JASSM-ER has more than two-and-a-half times the range of the baseline JASSM for greater standoff margin. These 2,000-pound cruise missiles employ an infrared seeker and Global Positioning System receiver to dial into specific target aimpoints.

 

JASSM and JASSM-ER are critical weapons for the U.S. Air Force. Highly effective against high-value, well-fortified, fixed and relocatable targets, the stealthy JASSM is integrated on the U.S. Air Force’s B-1B, B-2, B-52, F-16 and F-15E. The B-1B also carries JASSM-ER.

 

Internationally, JASSM is integrated on the Royal Australian Air Force’s F/A-18A/B. Future integration efforts will focus on the U.S. and international versions of the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fighter aircraft and other international platforms.

 

JASSM is produced at the company’s award-winning manufacturing facility in Troy, Ala., honored as one of the “Top 10 Best Plants in America” by Industry Week magazine for 2012. The facility has assembled more than 1,400 JASSM cruise missiles for testing and operational use toward a total U.S. Air Force objective of 4,900.

 

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 116,000 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 2012 were $47.2 billion.

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10 janvier 2014 5 10 /01 /janvier /2014 08:20
paveway II Enhanced Laser Guided Training Rounds (ELGTR)

paveway II Enhanced Laser Guided Training Rounds (ELGTR)

 

Jan 8, 2014 ASDNews Source : Lockheed Martin Corporation

 

Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) received an $84.5 million contract on Dec. 23 from the U.S. Navy to produce paveway II Enhanced Laser Guided Training Rounds (ELGTR).

 

Under the four-year indefinite-delivery indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract, Lockheed Martin will deliver ELGTRs, shipping containers, logistics and product support to the U.S. Navy.

 

"Lockheed Martin remains committed to providing U.S. Navy aircrews with the most innovative, advanced and cost-effective training solutions," said Joe Serra, precision guided systems manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. "We are nearing completion of multi-carriage ELGTR development, which will further increase training efficiency, proficiency and flexibility."

 

This contract extends delivery of ELGTRs to the U.S. Navy through 2018. Lockheed Martin has produced advanced training solutions for the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps and international customers since Laser Guided Training Round production began in 1992, and has delivered more than 130,000 training rounds to date.

 

ELGTR emulates cockpit indications, release and terminal characteristics of the paveway II laser guided weapon systems to provide affordable, high-performance aircrew training without depleting paveway II laser guided bomb (LGB) tactical inventory. Recognized worldwide as the only live-fire training solution for warfighters, the ELGTR is compatible with F/A-18, AV-8B, F-16 and various international aircraft.

 

In addition to paveway II ELGTR, Lockheed Martin's 350,000-square-foot production facility in Archbald, Pa., designs and manufactures combat-proven paveway II Plus LGB kits. Lockheed Martin has delivered more than 70,000 LGB kits and 7,000 Dual Mode LGB kits to the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and international customers.

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