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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 11:50
Critical space technologies for European strategic non-dependence

 

Brussels - 19 March, 2015 European Defence Agency

 

The European Space Agency (ESA), the European Commission (EC) and the European Defence Agency (EDA) agreed on a list of actions for strategic non-dependence in the area of critical space technologies. The list was elaborated in a joint task force together with the relevant Member States organisations, industry and academia and contains 39 non-dependence actions in technology domains such as materials, electronic or photonic components, green propellants or complex structures.

 

One of the key objectives of the European Space Policy is to ensure non-dependence on critical technologies. This requires significant efforts in a large array of domains such as skills, sustainable European industrial capabilities, appropriate public policies and regulations as well as forward-looking research and technology.

Europe’s ability to get access to  key enabling technologies is crucial to both space and defence capabilities. Considering the similarities between the defence and space domains, since 2009, ESA, EC and EDA have run the European non-dependence process through a joint task force for critical technologies. Its objective is to map key technology needs and to identify priority actions to be implemented within European or national programmes. 

On 13 February 2015, the 3rd European non-dependence process results were presented to Member States and industry. The final list of urgent actions for the time frame 2015-2017 was finalised on 18 March 2015.

From October 2014 to February 2015 the joint task force together with the relevant Member States organisations, industry and academia conducted a consultation process to find consensus on the most urgent research actions. The current action list contains 39 non-dependence actions in technology domains such as materials, electronic or photonic components, green propellants or complex structures. It promotes synergies between ESA, EC and EDA activities and serves as input for the upcoming H2020 Space workplan.

This succesful joint process illustrates the commitment of both Member States and European institutional actors in securing those key technologies that reinforce Europe’s supply chain and thus its strategic independence and security.

 

(c) Pictures: ESA, European Commission

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:55
Le Sphyrna, premier drone marin français multimissions - photo SeaProven

Le Sphyrna, premier drone marin français multimissions - photo SeaProven

 

17 Mars 2015 Par Marine & Océans

 

À l’heure où le monde se préoccupe toujours plus de la sûreté et de la sécurité des espaces maritimes, SeaProven, société mayennaise innovante en recherche et développement maritime, présente le Sphyrna, le premier drone marin multimissions français.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:50
photo Royal Air Force

photo Royal Air Force

 

March 19, 2015 By: Craig Hoyle - FG

 

London - Several of the Royal Air Force’s Lockheed Martin C-130J tactical transports have been upgraded for extended-range operations, the UK Ministry of Defence says.

Nine of the service’s Hercules have been equipped with external fuel tanks under a modification activity valued at around £7 million ($10.3 million), minister for defence equipment, support and technology Philip Dunne said earlier this month, responding to a parliamentary question.

 

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
Falcon 900 MPA - photo Dassault Aviation

Falcon 900 MPA - photo Dassault Aviation

 

March 18, 2015 By: Greg Waldron - FG

 

Langkawi - Maritime patrol and surveillance were the most prominent themes of this year's LIMA show, as big manufacturers jockeyed to promote their various solutions for the mission.

Industry sources say that Kuala Lumpur is in the process of crystallising a requirement for six to eight long-range maritime patrol aircraft (MPA).

The potential requirement attracted attention from a range of companies including Boeing, Saab, Dassault, and Indonesian Aerospace.

Boeing brought its Maritime Surveillance Aircraft (MSA) technology demonstrator to the show. The type appeared on the static line, and the US airframer briefed media and officials on the MSA's capabilities. A modified Challenger 604 business jet, the unarmed MSA is optimised for high altitude, broad area surveillance.

Saab, Dassault, and Indonesian Aerospace also displayed models of MSA and MPA solutions on their stands.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
India to Overhaul DRDO, State-Owned Defense Firms

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Indian Ministry of Defence; issued March 17, 2015)

 

Overhauling of the DRDO and DPSUs

 

The functioning of Defence Research and Development Organization (DRDO) was reviewed by a Committee headed by Prof. P. Rama Rao. DRDO has accepted several recommendations which inter-alia include:

 

-- creation of Seven Technology Domain based Clusters headed by Director’s General;

-- Restructuring of DRDO HQrs;

-- Creation of Directorate of Quality, Reliability and Safety (QR&S);

-- increase in budget for Extramural Research;

-- creation of empowered Defence Technology Commission (DTC);

-- creation of a Commercial Arm of DRDO;

-- creation of 5 Senior Administrative Grade (SAG) posts along with 162 other posts for full scale implementation of Integrated Financial Advisor (IFA) Scheme etc.

 

Recently, a review of all DRDO Projects along with the three Services, OFB and Defence Public Sector Undertakings (DPSUs) has been carried out so as to realign the focus towards the “Make in India” Programme.

 

Also, more than 1,000 small, medium and large Indian industries have been involved in the development and productionisation of products for the delivery to the Services.

 

With the objective of achieving self-reliance in defence production, the DPSUs have been continuously modernizing and upgrading their capabilities and widening their product range. Some of the DPSUs have also collaborated with DRDO and other R&D institutions in this regard. There is also increasing emphasis on partnerships of DPSUs with the private sector for sourcing various components so that DPSUs can play the role of system integrators and become more competitive.

 

This information was given by Defence Minister Shri Manohar Parrikar in a written reply to Shri Rajeev Chandrasekhar in Rajya Sabha today.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
photo Greg Waldron - FG

photo Greg Waldron - FG

 

Mar 2015 By: Greg Waldron - FG

 

Langkawi - A unit of Malaysian maintenance, repair and overhaul firm Airod has proposed an upgrade programme for Malaysia’s fleet of 10 RAC MiG-29 aircraft.

The upgrade, which an industry source says is being considered by the air force, would see the type upgraded to what it refers to as the “MiG-29NM” standard.

It is not clear how receptive Kuala Lumpur will be to the proposal. For several years major international fighter makers have vied for the Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MRCA) requirement, which will lead to the MiG-29s being replaced with 18 newer types. Still, the government has yet to issue a request for proposals for MRCA, and funding remains a challenge.

 

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:35
photo Livefist

photo Livefist

 

March 18, 2015 by Shiv Aroor - Livefist

 

It's unmissable. The intensifying sense over the last two months that the Su-30 MKI has swooped into M-MRCA airspace. From the politics of it, to the powerplay smack dab in the middle of final negotiations, from the journalism drumming up the new face-off to diplomatic leverage and the criticality of the Indian Air Force's own situation during an increasingly fluid phase of its largest ever procurement. A comprehensive Livefist report that draws on all of these aspects to provide a clear sense of the state of play, and what's turning out to be one of the most interesting phases an eight year procurement effort.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:30
SEAHAWK A2 - photo MSI Defence Systems

SEAHAWK A2 - photo MSI Defence Systems

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Defense Security Cooperation Agency; issued March 17, 2015)

 

Jordan - 35 Meter Coastal Patrol Boats

 

WASHINGTON --- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Jordan for 35-meter Coastal Patrol Boats and associated equipment, parts, training and logistical support for an estimated cost of $80 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on March 16, 2015.

 

The Government of Jordan has requested a possible sale of two 35-meter Coastal Patrol Boats with two MSI Defence Systems LTD SEAHAWK A2 DS30M-30mm Gun Weapon Systems with MK44 Bushmaster Cannons, 1,140 rounds of 30mm Target-Practice-Tracer (TP-T) ammunition, 4,020 rounds of 30mm High Explosive Incendiary with Tracer (HEI-T) ammunition, 60 rounds of 30mm inert dummy ammunition and two chaff systems, spare and repair parts, support equipment, publications and technical documentation, personnel training and training equipment, U.S. Government and contractor engineering, technical and logistics support services, and other related elements of logistical and program support. The estimated cost is $80 million.

 

This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a partner which has been, and continues to be, an important force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East. It is vital to the U.S. national interest that Jordan develops and maintains a strong and ready self-defense capability and enhances its ability to protect its territorial waters.

 

Jordan will have no difficulty absorbing these boats into its armed forces.

 

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

 

The principal contractor is undetermined at this time and will be determined during negotiations. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale.

 

Implementation of this proposed sale will require the temporary assignment of approximately two U.S. Government or contractor representatives in Jordan on an intermittent basis over the life of the case.

 

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

 

This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:20
Brimstone offer to USA a test case for Europe, says MBDA

 

17 Mar 2015 By: Craig Hoyle - FG

 

European guided weapons specialist MBDA is waiting on a decision from the US government on whether to acquire its Brimstone air-to-surface missile, with the company’s chief executive warning that a rejection of its offer will call into question the openness of Washington’s defence acquisition policy.

Speaking about the company’s inability so far to meet growth targets for its MBDA Inc unit in the USA, Antoine Bouvier says: “The most significant opportunity we could have short-term is the Brimstone, for some US customers.”

A UK-developed weapon capable of striking moving ground targets in all weather conditions from fixed-wing aircraft and unmanned air vehicles, the dual-mode seeker-equipped Brimstone early last year completed a bilateral firing campaign from a General Atomics Aeronautical Systems MQ-9 Reaper in the USA. A potential order for the missile has also been the subject of discussions between British Prime Minister David Cameron and US President Barack Obama, industry sources confirm.

 

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:20
US Army Orders 19 Gray Eagle UAVs

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

 (Source: US Department of Defense; issued Mar 16, 2015)

 

Pentagon Contract Announcement

 

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc., Poway, California, was awarded a $132,660,931 modification (P00022) to contract W58RGZ-13-C-0109 to acquire 19 Gray Eagle unmanned aircraft, 19 SATCOM Air Data Terminals, one lot of initial spares, and one lot of ground support equipment .

 

Fiscal 2014 other procurement (Army) funds in the amount of $132,660,931 were obligated at the time of the award. Estimated completion date is May 31, 2017. Work will be performed in Poway, California.

 

Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity.

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19 mars 2015 4 19 /03 /mars /2015 08:20
Boeing Working US Navy Laser Weapon

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Albuquerque Journal; published Mar 17, 2015)

 

Boeing Wins $30 Million Navy-Laser Contract


Boeing Co.’s Directed Energy Systems division in Albuquerque is leading a U.S. Navy effort to build a beam control system that can provide pinpoint accuracy for laser weapons on warships.

The company’s Defense, Space and Security unit, headquartered in St. Louis, Mo., won a $29.5 million contract with the Office of Naval Research to build a precision beam control system for ship-mounted solid-state lasers – building on truck-mounted laser systems developed for the Army.

For naval systems, the laser must be able to withstand harsh conditions at sea, said David DeYoung, director of Boeing’s Directed Energy Systems in Albuquerque, where all of the company’s directed-energy operations are centered.

“We’ll add new pieces to the system for operating in a naval environment, where there’s potential for sea spray and difficult atmospheric conditions” DeYoung said.

“Accuracy and functionality depend on how fine you can get the aim point and hold the beam,” said Boeing spokeswoman Queena Jones.

Boeing won’t build the lasers, just the beam control. (end of excerpt)


Click here for the full story, on the Albuquerque Journal website.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 18:30
Saab Close to Sale of Bill 2 Missile to Saudi

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

 (Source: Radio Sweden; published Mar 14, 2015)

 

New Weapons On the Way to Saudi Arabia

 

Swedish defence company Saab Dynamics is close to finalising a new arms sales deal with Saudi Arabia, financial newspaper Dagens Industri reports.

 

Intense negotiations over the delivery of the anti-tank missile Bill 2 have been going on for nearly one year, according to Dagens Industri.

 

The ongoing diplomatic row between Sweden and Saudi Arabia will reportedly not affect the deal, although it has disrupted the process.

 

The government can do little to stop the deal because it is considered to be a delivery within the framework of an agreement made in 2007. The deal has been approved by the Swedish Trade and Invest Council and by the Inspectorate of Strategic Products, which cannot stop weapons deliveries without a UN embargo, writes Dagens Industri.

 

Saab Dynamics, based in Linköping, south-eastern Sweden, has neither denied nor confirmed the allegations.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:50
Saab Comments on the Swedish Government's Announced Investments in the Next Generation Submarine, A26

 

Mar 17, 2015 ASDNews Source : Saab AB

 

Defence and security company Saab welcomes the Swedish Minister of Defence, Peter Hultqvist’s, announcement to invest in two submarines of the next generation, A26, of a total amount of SEK 8,2 billion. The Swedish minister made the announcement in Karlskrona, Sweden.

 

Today, the Swedish Minister of Defence, Peter Hultqvist, announced that the government, on Thursday, intends to give a mandate to the Armed Forces to order two submarines.

 

Saab has not received any order on production of the new submarine but Saab looks forward to the discussions, which will lead to an agreement and order for A26. This will be a part of an earlier signed Letter of Intent.

 

Saab and FMV (The Swedish Defence Material Administration) signed a Letter of Intent in June 2014 regarding the Swedish Armed Forces’ underwater capability for the period 2015-2024. The Letter of Intent comprises support, development, design and production of submarines and other underwater systems, corresponding to potential orders of approximately SEK 11.2 billion, provided that necessary decisions are made.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:50
Steyr-Puch 6x6 Pandur Recce and Observation - photo MIL.be

Steyr-Puch 6x6 Pandur Recce and Observation - photo MIL.be

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: RUAG Defence; issued Mar 16, 2015)

 

RUAG Signs Contract to Develop Protection Systems for Belgium and Austrian Pandur I Fleet

 

RUAG Defence, the strategic partner of international land forces, is continuing to develop its business in the field of ballistic protection systems. In a joint procurement effort Belgium and Austria, whereby Austria has the lead, have awarded RUAG Defence to upgrade their fleet of Pandur I with ballistic protection kits. All 5 variants of the Pandur I will be upgraded with mine-, IED- and ballistic protection.

 

SidePRO-KE/IED is a highly engineered, fully integrated, modular polyvalent composite protection system that utilises a variety of advanced lightweight materials for direct application on armoured vehicles. SidePRO-KE/IED meets current threat level protection requirements. The mine protection system MinePRO is one of the best systems In the market. Various armies rely on the highly effective protection.

 

MinePRO is a lightweight, blast and EFP resistant, easy to mount armour plate based on state-of-the art technology to ensure the safety of the crew. Further, all other subsystems of the vehicle such as stowage, seating for crew, driver and commander shall be evaluated, improved, reinforced or replaced.

 

The realisation of the project will start this spring and will be finished by the end of 2020.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
Sikorsky Wins $93M for Eight UH-60Ms for Tunisia

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

 (Source: US Department of Defense; issued Mar 17, 2015)

 

Pentagon Contract Announcement

 

Sikorsky Aircraft Corp., Stratford, Connecticut, was awarded a $93,312,100 modification (P00233) to contract W58RGZ-12-C-0008 for eight "Green" configured UH-60M Blackhawk Helicopters for the Tunisian government.

 

Fiscal 2015 other procurement funds in the amount of $93,312,100 were obligated at the time of the award.

 

Estimated completion date is Dec. 31, 2016. Work will be performed in Stratford, Connecticut.

 

Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
An Ottokar Cobra

An Ottokar Cobra

 

18 March 2015 by defenceWeb

 

African arms imports increased by 45 per cent between the periods 2005–2009 to 2010–14, with Algeria importing the most during this period, the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) has revealed in an analysis of the global arms trade.

 

Between 2010 and 2014, Africa accounted for 9 per cent of all arms exports, measured by volume. The three largest importers in Africa in 2010–14 were Algeria (30 per cent of imports), Morocco (26 per cent) and Sudan (6 per cent).

 

States in sub-Saharan Africa received 42 per cent of imports by African states. Sudan was the largest and Uganda the second largest importer in the subregion, accounting for, respectively, 15 per cent and 14 per cent of the subregional total, according to SIPRI.

 

Between 2005–2009 and 2010–14 imports by Algeria increased by 3 per cent; imports by its regional rival Morocco increased elevenfold. In 2014, major deliveries to Algeria included a helicopter carrier from Italy, the last batch of 48 air defence systems from Russia and an estimated 50 self-propelled guns from China; meanwhile, Morocco received a frigate from France. Algeria, unlike Morocco, has several major outstanding arms orders. These include orders placed in 2014 for two Kilo submarines and 42 Mi-28/Mi-26 helicopters from Russia and 926 Fuchs APCs from Germany. The orders for helicopters and APCs appear partly related to the Algerian Government’s conflict with rebel groups.

 

Nigeria and Cameroon received weapons from several suppliers to fulfil their urgent demand for weapons to fight against the militant Islamist group Boko Haram. Taken together, in 2014, both countries ordered and received helicopters from China and Russia, and armoured vehicles from China, Czech Republic, South Africa and Ukraine. Canadian companies also supplied armoured vehicles from production lines based in Nigeria and the UAE, SIPRI reports.

 

Elsewhere in the world, SIPRI noted that arms imports to Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states increased by 71 per cent from 2005–2009 to 2010–14, accounting for 54 per cent of imports to the Middle East in the latter period. Saudi Arabia rose to become the second largest importer of major weapons worldwide in 2010–14, increasing the volume of its arms imports four times compared to 2005–2009. The top six importers are India, Saudi Arabia, China, the UAE, Pakistan and Australia.

 

“Mainly with arms from the USA and Europe, the GCC states have rapidly expanded and modernized their militaries”, said Pieter Wezeman, Senior Researcher with the SIPRI Arms and Military Expenditure Programme. “The GCC states, along with Egypt, Iraq, Israel and Turkey in the wider Middle East, are scheduled to receive further large orders of major arms in the coming years.”

 

Asian arms imports continue to increase and of the top 10 largest importers of major weapons during the 5-year period 2010–14, five are in Asia: India (15 per cent of global arms imports), China (5 per cent), Pakistan (4 per cent), South Korea (3 per cent) and Singapore (3 per cent). These five countries accounted for 30 per cent of the total volume of arms imports worldwide. India accounted for 34 per cent of the volume of arms imports to Asia, more than three times as much as China. China’s arms imports actually decreased by 42 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14, SIPRI data reveals.

 

“Enabled by continued economic growth and driven by high threat perceptions, Asian countries continue to expand their military capabilities with an emphasis on maritime assets”, said Siemon Wezeman, Senior Researcher with the SIPRI Arms and Military Expenditure Programme. “Asian countries generally still depend on imports of major weapons, which have strongly increased and will remain high in the near future.”

 

Other notable developments highlighted by SIPRI are that European arms imports decreased by 36 per cent between 2005–2009 to 2010–14, although the Institute cautioned that developments in Ukraine and Russia may counter this trend after 2014 with several states bordering Russia increasing their arms imports.

 

SIPRI also pointed out that arms imports by Azerbaijan increased by 249 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14; to fight ISIS, Iraq received arms from countries as diverse as Iran, Russia and the USA in 2014; and deliveries and orders for ballistic missile defence systems increased significantly in 2010–14, notably in the Gulf and North East Asia.

 

Exporters

 

The United States remains the lead global arms exporter, followed by Russia, China, Germany and France. Together, they accounted for 74 per cent of the volume of arms exports. Overall, the volume of international transfers of major conventional weapons grew by 16 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14, SIPRI said.

 

The volume of US exports of major weapons rose by 23 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14. The USA’s share of the volume of international arms exports was 31 per cent in 2010–14, compared with 27 per cent for Russia.

 

“The USA has long seen arms exports as a major foreign policy and security tool, but in recent years exports are increasingly needed to help the US arms industry maintain production levels at a time of decreasing US military expenditure”, said Dr Aude Fleurant, Director of the SIPRI Arms and Military Expenditure Programme.

 

Russian exports of major weapons increased by 37 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14. During the same period, Chinese exports of major arms increased by 143 per cent, making it the third largest supplier in 2010–14, displacing Germany in the number three spot, however still significantly behind the USA and Russia.

 

China supplied major arms to 35 states in 2010–14. A significant percentage (just over 68 per cent) of Chinese exports went to three countries: Pakistan, Bangladesh and Myanmar. China also exported major arms to 18 African states. Examples of China’s increasing global presence as an arms supplier in 2010–14 included deals with Venezuela for armoured vehicles and transport and trainer aircraft, with Algeria for three frigates, with Indonesia for the supply of hundreds of anti-ship missiles and with Nigeria for the supply of a number of unmanned combat aerial vehicles, according to SIPRI.

 

Germany’s share of the global arms market has been decreasing (by 43 per cent between 2005–2009 and 2010–14) according to SIPRI, but nevertheless the country has received some major contracts. African orders in 2014 included two Type 209 submarines for Egypt and 926 Fuchs armoured personnel carriers for Algeria.

 

France exported a substantial amount of hardware to Africa – between 2010 and 2014 21 per cent of its exports went to the continent. French eff orts to increase arms exports were boosted by a deal negotiated in 2014 and signed in early 2015 with Egypt for the delivery of 24 Rafale combat aircraft and one FREMM frigate.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:45
Denel moving into civil security sector

 

18 March 2015 by defenceWeb

 

An indication Denel is moving into areas other than pure defence comes with the announcement of a partnership with Aviation Co-ordination Services (ACS) to provide secure hold baggage screening services at African airports.

 

A memorandum of understanding signed this week will see Denel, through its recently established Denel Integrated Systems and Maritime (DSIM) division work and co-operate with ACS at airports outside South Africa.

 

“We are combining the experience, reputation and resources of Denel with the specialist technology and expertise offered by ACS to provide safe, secure and cost effective operational services to airlines operating at African airports,” said Ismail Dockrat, DISM chief executive.

 

DISM is the newest addition in the Denel stable and was created primarily to partner with other companies in the defence and security sectors where design, management, integration and through-life support of security systems is a priority.

 

“The agreement with ACS is an opportunity for us to start playing a role in the security arena on the African continent,” Dockrat said, adding it would see what he termed the “implementation of security measures needed at African airports to enable compliance with international standards”.

 

Hold baggage screening technology is a critical requirement for airlines operating internationally. The African Union has, according to DISM, been keeping pace with ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) and various national civil aviation authorities’ screening requirements.

 

Juan van Rensburg, ACS chief executive, said the company has more than 17 years of experience in screening hold baggage on behalf of airlines operating to and in South Africa.

 

“We look forward to exploring possibilities with Denel and rolling out similar services in other parts of Africa. This alliance is the first foray for Denel into the international civil security sector.”

 

The DISM division housed at Denel Kempton Park campus will manage implementation of the memorandum on Denel’s behalf and together with ACS commence initial assessments in targeted key African markets.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:35
Russia Starts Missiles Delivery for Su-30MKM Jets Designed for Malaysia

The Su-30MKM, designed specifically for Malaysia's Royal Air Force, is armed with several air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles with ranges of about 75 miles. By 2011, the country purchased 18 Su-30MKMs from Russian Irkut Corporation.

 

17.03.2015 sputniknews.com

 

LANGKAWI (Sputnik) — Russia has started delivering missiles for Malaysia's Sukhoi Su-30MKM fighters, manufactured by Russia's Irkut Corporation, the head of Russia's state arms exporter Rosoboronexport's regional department told RIA Novosti in an interview on Tuesday.

 

"We are currently providing after-sales service for Su-30MKM, fighters, including the supply of all necessary spare parts and repair services, as well as the supply of aircraft munitions," Vladimir Ereschenko, who is in charge of the Rosoboronexport delegation at the LIMA-2015 exhibition taking place in Malaysia, said.

 

Malaysia signed a $900-million contract with the Irkut Corporation for the delivery of 18 SU-30MKMs in August 2003. The country received all jets by 2011.

 

The Su-30MKM, designed specifically for Malaysia's Royal Air Force, is armed with several air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles with ranges of about 75 miles.

 

According to Rosoboronexport, the company exceeded its export projections by $22 million in 2014, despite being subject to Western economic sanctions, imposed on key Russian companies due to the situation in Ukraine.

 

Northwestern Malaysia's Langkawi hosts the biennial LIMA-2015 exhibition on March 17-21. Around 38,000 people are expected to visit the event, according to the organizers.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:35
Su-30MKI - photo UIMC Rostec

Su-30MKI - photo UIMC Rostec

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source New Delhi TV.com; published Mar 17, 2015)

 

Sukhoi-30 MKI, Air Force's Most Modern Fighter Jet, Plagued by Engine Trouble

 

NEW DELHI --- Sukhoi-30 MKI, the most powerful and modern fighter jets in Indian Air Force's stable, has been hit by mid-air engine failures. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said in Parliament today that as many as 35 instances of engine failures were reported in 2013-14 - that's nearly three a month.

 

In all, there are 69 instances of engine failure in the last four years, the minister said. Inquiries by the Air Force have revealed that in as many as 33 instances, the engines failed because of impure fuel, in another 11 cases, the problem was caused by excessive vibration and in eight others, engine failures were reported because of low pressure in the lubricant tanks, the Defence Minister said. About five SU-30 MKI have crashed since 2009.

 

Like all twin-engine jets, the Russian made Su-30s are capable of landing on a single engine. But to reach its maximum potential of carrying a total eight tones of payload including bombs, missiles and spare fuel tanks, the jet needs both its AL-31FP engines to function.

 

Engine failures is fast becoming a major concern for Air Force and also puts a question mark on India's ability to defend its skies. Another problem area that senior Air Force officers point out is serviceability. "Serviceability of the aircraft is about 50 per cent only," an officer said. It means at any given time, roughly half out of a fleet of 200 jets are available for operational purposes. This becomes crucial in times of emergencies like war.

 

Mr Parrikar said that the engines were scheduled to be overhauled after every 1000 hours of flying, but the defects started showing-up after only 500 hours of flying. The minister said that Russia-based NPO Saturn, manufacturers of Su-30 Al-31FP engines, offered to make "nine technological improvements" during overhauls, and added that after the modifications the engines were flying for upto 900 hours.

 

To address the growing capability gap, especially that created by increasing obsolescence of MiG-21, India is talking to France to buy 126 medium multi-role Rafale fighter jets. But the negotiations have been dragging on for three years. Although the acquisition has got mired on per unit cost and number of man hours required to produce it in India, a resolution of these issues can be expected when Prime Minister Narendra Modi visits France in April.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:35
Philippines Air Force Takes Delivery of Its First C295

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

 

The Philippines Air Force has taken delivery of the first of three Airbus C295 medium transport aircraft ordered from Airbus Defence and Space.

 

The aircraft was formally handed over in Seville, Spain where the final assembly line is located and is now being ferried to the Philippines.

 

In Philippines Air Force service the C295 will play a key role in the modernization of the force´s transport fleet and will undertake a wide variety of military and humanitarian missions.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:25
Argentina Confirms JF-17 Talks with China

The Argentina air force has sent a technical team to China to discuss a possible buy of 12 to 24 Chengdu JF-17 Xiaolong (Thunder) combat aircraft, seen here armed with anti-ship missiles. (Chinese Internet photo)

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: La Gaceta; published Mar 17, 2015)

(Published in Spanish; unofficial translation by defense-Aerospace.com)

 

Argentina Evaluating Offers to Buy 24 Fighter Jets

 

BUENOS AIRES --- Argentina is talking with China about buying up to 24 FC-1 / JF-17 fighters capable of reaching the Falklands, as confirmed by the Minister of Defence, Agustín Rossi. He said that an official delegation will travel to China next week to begin the talks.

 

"The Chief of Staff of the Air Force (Mario Miguel Callejo) is going to China with a technical mission to explore the possibility of purchasing" the fighters, Rossi confirmed as he accompanied President Cristina Fernandez in announcing an investment of $930 million to equip the Army.

 

Argentina’s interest in the Chinese fighters was first reported by the London Sunday Express newspaper The possibility was first raised as part of the trade agreements signed by Fernandez during her recent trip to China.

 

“The aircraft is a single-seat, single-engine design capable of a top speed of Mach 1.8 at an altitude of 55,000 feet. It also has a combat range of 1,350 kilometers, which allows him to fly back and forth to Stanley from the base of Tierra del Fuego," Rossi explained during an interview with Radio America.

 

Rossi declined to give many details of the talks but confirmed that the intention is to buy "not less than 12 and not more than 24" aircraft. If the agreement did indeed materialize, he said it would be "something new for Argentina’s Air Force, which has always had Western equipment."

 

The defense minister said that China is not the only country with which negotiated for the purchase of fighter planes. For the moment, Argentina has "two formal offers" for Spanish Mirage F-1s and Israeli Kfir Block 60s. "We also have an informal French offer," he said, but avoided giving details.

 

Argentina will make its decision once all formal offers are on the table, but the intention is that it should happen before the end of the year. "Then, I'll take the options to the President to make the decision," Rossi confirmed.

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:25
A UH-60M helicopter. (Photo Sikorsky)

A UH-60M helicopter. (Photo Sikorsky)

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Defense Security Cooperation Agency; issued Mar 17, 2015)

 

Mexico - UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters


WASHINGTON --- The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Mexico for UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters and associated equipment, parts, training and logistical support for an estimated cost of $110 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on March 16, 2015.

The Government of Mexico has requested a possible sale of three UH-60M Black Hawk helicopters in standard U.S. Government configuration, with designated unique equipment, Government Furnished Equipment (GFE), six T700-GE-701D engines, six H-764G Embedded Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation Systems (EGIs), six M134 7.62mm Machine Guns, three Star Safire III Forward Looking Infrared Radar Systems, three Aviation Mission Planning Systems, twelve AN/AVS-9 Night Vision Goggles, and one Aviation Ground Power Unit.

Also included are spare and repair parts, support equipment, communication equipment, facility construction, air worthiness support, publications and technical documentation, personnel training and training equipment, warranties, U.S. Government and contractor technical, engineering, and logistics support services, and other related element of logistics and program support. The estimated cost is $110 million.

This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a strategic partner. Mexico has been a strong partner in combating organized crime and drug trafficking organizations. The sale of these UH-60M helicopters to Mexico will significantly increase and strengthen its capability to provide in-country airlift support for its forces engaged in counter-drug operations.

Mexico intends to use these defense articles and services to modernize its armed forces and expand its existing naval/maritime support in its efforts to combat drug trafficking organizations.

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

The principal contractors will be the Sikorsky Aircraft Company in Stratford, Connecticut; and General Electric Aircraft Company (GEAC) in Lynn, Massachusetts. There are no known offset agreements in connection with this potential sale.

Implementation of this proposed sale may require the assignment of one additional U.S. Government representative and one contractor representative in country full-time to support the delivery and training for approximately two years.

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.


(EDITOR’S NOTE: Even with add-ons, training, spares and support, the cost of the above contract works out to about $37 million per helicopter.
This is a nice mark-up, given that the latest, March 2 contract for UH-60 production is worth $241.7 million for 22 aircraft, or $11.9 million each.
This is also roughly the same price also being paid by Tunisia; a contract awarded Mar 17, for eight “Green-configured” UH-60Ms, is worth $93 million (or about $11.6 million each.)
Mexico is probably not getting the best deal available, especially as FMS sales are supposed to use the same price as that paid by US users.)

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
DoD to Boost Modernization of Weapons, Capabilities

 

Mar 17, 2015 ASDNews Source : AFPS

 

This year, the Defense Department will move aggressively to reverse the trend of chronic underinvestment in weapons and capabilities, the deputy defense secretary said here today.

 

Bob Work spoke this morning about defense modernization and the department’s proposed fiscal year 2016 budget before an audience attending the McAleese/Credit Suisse Defense Programs Conference.

The bottom line, he said in prepared remarks, is that “because of budget uncertainty and restrictions imposed by Congress, and because of our unrelenting focus on the readiness of forward deployed forces, we're chronically underinvesting in new weapons and capabilities.”

Work added, “That should give all of us pause because our technological dominance is no longer assured.”

 

Modernization = Technological Superiority

The U.S. military’s technological superiority is directly related to its modernization accounts, the deputy secretary said, so this year the department is moving to redress the long-deferred modernization to stay ahead of competitors and potential aggressor nations.

Work said the White House has helped by approving about $21 billion in added requirements over the Future Years Defense Program.

“This came with added funding, which has allowed us to make targeted investments in space control and launch capabilities, missile defense, cyber, and advanced sensors, communications, and munitions -– all of which are critical for power projection in contested environments,” he said.

The White House also added funding to help the department modernize its aging nuclear deterrent force, Work said.

 

Supporting Ongoing Operations

The department’s fiscal 2016 base budget request is $534 billion, or $36 billion above the FY16 sequestration caps, he said, adding that it’s “only the first year of a five-year Future Years Defense Program. When considering fiscal years 2016 through 2020, our planned program is approximately $154 billion over the sequestration caps.”

The department also is asking for $51 billion in overseas contingency operations funding, Work said, “to support our campaign against the extremist [Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant], ongoing operations in Afghanistan, and other operations in the Central Command area of responsibility.”

The global demand for U.S. forces remains high, particularly for deployable headquarters units, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets, missile defense, and naval and aerospace forces. The global operating tempo also remains high, he added.

Together, the deputy secretary said, these requests provide funding needed to recover readiness over the next several years, invest in long-deferred recapitalization and modernization, and meet global demands placed on the military by the National Security Strategy.

 

The Ragged Edge

 “The leaders of this department believe firmly that any significant reduction in funding below what is in the president's budget, or a broad denial of the reform initiatives that we have proposed to Congress, would mean the risks to our defense strategy would become unmanageable,” the deputy secretary said.

 “Quite frankly,” he added, “we’re at the ragged edge of what is manageable.”

Adding to the pressure on defense systems, potential competitors are developing capabilities that challenge the U.S. military in all domains that put space assets and the command and control system at risk, Work said.

 “We see several nations developing capabilities that threaten to erode our long-assured technological overmatch and our ability to project power,” he added.

These include new and advanced anti-ship and anti-air missiles, and new counter-space, cyber, electronic warfare, undersea and air attack capabilities, Work said.

 

Erosion of Technical Superiority

In some areas, he added, “we see levels of new weapons development that we haven’t seen since the mid-1980s, near the peak of the Soviet Union’s surge in Cold War defense spending.”

The department, Work said, is addressing the erosion of U.S. technological superiority through the Defense Innovation Initiative, a broad effort to improve business operations and find innovative ways to sustain and advance America’s military dominance for the 21st century.

 “The DII’s leading focus is to identify, develop and field breakthrough technologies and systems,” he said, “and to develop innovative operational concepts to help us use our current capabilities in new and creative ways.”

The ultimate aim is to help craft a third offset strategy, he added.

 

Third Offset Strategy

After World War II the United States used nuclear weapons development to offset Soviet numerical and geographic advantage in the central front, and again changed the game in the 1970s and 1980s with networked precision strike, stealth and surveillance for conventional forces, Work explained.

Now, he said, “we will seek to identify new technologies and concepts that will keep the operational advantage firmly in the hands of America’s conventional forces, today and in the future.”

Central to the effort is a new Long-Range Research & Development Planning Program, the deputy secretary said.

The LRRDP was created to identify weapons and systems in the force that can be used in more innovative ways, promising technologies that can be pulled forward and long-range science and technology investments that can be made now for a future payoff.

 

Invitation to the Table

Technologies that might be associated with a new offset strategy are being driven by the commercial sector, he said.

These include robotics; autonomous operating, guidance and control systems; visualization; biotechnology; miniaturization; advanced computing and big data; and additive manufacturing like 3-D printing.

 “The third offset strategy is an open invitation for everyone to come to the table … to creatively disrupt our defense ecosystem. Because we'll either creatively disrupt ourselves or be disrupted by someone else,” Work said.

 

Game-changing New Technologies

Funding dedicated to the effort includes the department’s annual $12 billion in science and technology accounts, and the FY 2016 budget request creates a reserve account to resource projects expected to emerge from the DII, he said.

 “The FY 2016 budget submission also invests in some fantastic, potentially game-changing new technologies that we can more quickly get into the force,” Work added, “as well as longer-range research efforts.”

Over the Future Years Defense Program, for example, the department is investing $149 million in unmanned undersea vehicles, $77 million in advanced sea mines, $473 million in high-speed strike weapons, $706 million in rail gun technology, and $239 million in high-energy lasers.

And, he said, a new Aerospace Innovation Initiative will bring people together to develop a wide range of advanced aeronautical capabilities to maintain U.S. military air dominance.

 

Solving Operational Challenges

Work said the department’s innovation must be “broad-based and rooted in realistic war gaming –- a big priority of mine -– more experimentation, and new concept and leadership development to enable our people to adapt to situations we can’t yet imagine.”

The third offset strategy is looking to solve specific operational challenges, the deputy secretary said, using the electromagnetic spectrum as an example.

“Electronic Warfare is often regarded as a combat enabler, but more and more it is at the actual forefront of any conflict,” he said. “To ensure we remain ahead in this increasingly important space, today I’m signing out a memo that establishes an Electronic Warfare, or EW, Programs Council.”

 

Electronic Warfare Programs Council

The senior-level oversight council will have the lead in establishing and coordinating DoD’s EW policy and will be co-chaired by Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendall and Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Navy Adm. James A. Winnefeld Jr., he said.

Compared to the platforms that carry EW suites, the deputy secretary added, it is a relatively small investment but has the potential for a very high payoff.

“Our potential competitors seek to contest the EW space, an area where we retain a decided lead,” Work said. “But that lead is tenuous, and we believe that there has been insufficient focus on EW across the department.”

 

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 17:20
photo General Atomics

photo General Atomics

 

Mar 16, 2015 ASDNews Source : General Atomics

 

    Predator/Gray Eagle Series Also Sets Record for 2014 Flight Hours

 

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI), a leading manufacturer of Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems solutions, today announced that its Predator® B/MQ-9 Reaper® RPA fleet has achieved a historic milestone of one million cumulative flight hours, with almost 90-percent of all missions flown in combat.

Additionally, GA-ASI announced that its Predator/Gray Eagle®-series aircraft family set a company record and historic industry feat in 2014: over 500,000 flight hours flown, which is the equivalent of flying 1,370 hours around-the-clock every day.

 

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18 mars 2015 3 18 /03 /mars /2015 16:35
photo Dassault Aviation

photo Dassault Aviation

 

Mar 18, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Bernama news agency; published Mar 18, 2015)

 

LANGKAWI, Malaysia --- French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation says Malaysia is being offered a financial package similar to that given to Egypt for procurement of its Rafale jet fighter.

 

Dassault Chief Executive Officer Eric Trappier said the package entails a ten-year repayment loan from a French commercial bank and guaranteed by the government of France.

 

Cairo recently acquired 24 Rafale combat aircraft and a multi-mission frigate and associated equipment from Dassault Aviation worth 5.3 billion euros.

 

"We are committed and looking forward to having a long term business deal here in Malaysia as we have the best fighter aircraft which can cover multirole missions," he said during a breakfast session with the media here Wednesday.

 

He said Dassault had already tied-up with a few local companies, namely, Zetro Aerospace, CTRM and Airod as part of a long-term plan to expand its business in the aerospace industry in Malaysia.

 

He said the company is also eyeing other local companies that have potential for collaboration, with the transfer of know-how and technology to Malaysia, in some aspects of the process to build aircraft.

 

"We are also looking at different types of industrial packages to offer to Malaysia, like the final assembly line of aircraft, production of some parts, development, maintenance and support which we see local industries as having the capability, if they collaborate with us," he added.

 

On the Malaysian Aerospace Industry Blueprint 2015-2030 launched yesterday, he said it was apt for fuelling the industry's development.

 

The blueprint was launched by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in conjunction with the ongoing Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (Lima 2015).

 

Trappier said Dassault sees the present as a good opportunity to collaborate with more Malaysian companies as it is not merely focused on selling aircraft. The Rafale is making its third appearance at the LIMA since 2011 and is the only company participating in an aerial demonstration this time.

 

"We believe we can succeed in Malaysia. We have a good aircraft to offer. and as far as I am concerned, good government-to-government relations as well," he added.

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