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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 16:20
BAE will continue provision of support services for the US Army SMDC's Future Warfare Center. Photo BAE Systems.

BAE will continue provision of support services for the US Army SMDC's Future Warfare Center. Photo BAE Systems.

28 May 2013 army-technology.com

 

BAE Systems has been awarded a contract extension to continue the provision of support services for the US Army Space and Missile Defense Command's (SMDC) Future Warfare Center (FWC).

 

Covering supply of research, engineering, and technical services, the $85m contract modification has been awarded as part of the agency's Concepts and Operations for Space and Missile Defense Integration Capabilities (COSMIC) programme.

 

Services provided under the contract will be used for development and understanding of missile defence methods and technologies.

 

BAE Systems Mission Support Solutions senior director Tom White said the latest contract continued the company's long-standing relationship with the Space and Missile Defense Command.

 

"The support we provide to the Future Warfare Center helps accelerate the development and fielding of Space and Missile Defense capabilities and forces," White said.

 

A wide range of engineering and technical services, including the development and integration of electronic systems for surveillance and reconnaissance missions, have been provided by the company under COSMIC indefinit-delivery indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract since October 2006.

 

Work is scheduled to be carried out at the company's facilities in Alabama and Colorado over the next two years.

 

FWC is responsible for development of the army's space and missile defence doctrine and concepts, evaluation of requirements, and vertical integration of doctrine, organisations, training, materiel, personnel, and facilities activities across ballistic missile defence systems elements.

 

Additional responsibilities include the management of high-performance computer centres, threat scenario design, command and control engineering, as well as advanced concept technology demonstration programmes.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 16:20
X-47B Carrier Suitability Testing Spring 2013 - video

Northrop Grumman's X-47B completing carrier suitability testing at NAS Patuxent River in Spring, 2013.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 12:20
(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Gary Granger Jr.)

(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Gary Granger Jr.)

5/27/2013 Strategy Page

 

PACIFIC OCEAN (May 21, 2013) The amphibious transport dock ship USS New Orleans (LPD 18) fires a surface to air intercept missile from it's Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) launcher while off the coast of California during a live-fire exercise. New Orleans is underway conducting a certification in preparation to deploy to the U.S. 5th Fleet and U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 12:20
A-10C arrives in Davis-Monthan

A-10C arrives in Davis-Monthan

May 28, 2013: Strategy Page

 

The last American A-10 attack aircraft has left Europe. A-10s were designed during the Cold War for combat against Russian ground forces in Europe. That war never happened, but the A-10 proved to be a formidable combat aircraft in post- Cold War conflicts; first in the 1991 liberation of Kuwait and later in Afghanistan and Iraq. During the last decade the most requested ground support aircraft In Afghanistan has been the A-10.  There was similar A-10 affection in Iraq. Troops from all nations quickly came to appreciate the unique abilities of this 1970s era aircraft that the U.S. Air Force has several times tried to retire. Two years ago the air force did announce that it was retiring 102 A-10s, leaving 243 in service. At the same time the air force accelerated the upgrading of the remaining A-10s to the A-10C standard.

 

Also called the PE (for precision engagement) model, the refurbished A-10s are supposed to remain in service until 2028, meaning most A-10Cs will have served over 40 years and as many as 16,000 flight hours. The upgrade effort has been underway for over five years. The upgrades include new electronics as well as structural and engine refurbishment. The A-10C provides the pilot with the same targeting and fire control gadgets the latest fighters have. The new A-10C cockpit has all the spiffy color displays and easy to use controls. Because it is a single-seat aircraft, that flies close to the ground (something that requires a lot more concentration), all the automation in the cockpit allows the pilot to do a lot more, with less stress, exertion, and danger.

 

The basic A-10 is a 1960s design, so the new additions are quite spectacular in comparison. New commo gear has also been added, allowing A-10 pilots to share pix and vids with troops on the ground. The A-10 pilot also has access to the Blue Force Tracker system, so that the nearest friendly ground forces show up on the HUD (Head Up Display) when coming in low to use the 30mm cannon. The A-10 can now use smart bombs, making it a do-it-all aircraft for ground support.

A-10s are worked hard in Afghanistan. For example, an A-10 squadron has a dozen aircraft and 18 pilots. Pilots often average about a hundred hours a month in the air. That's about twenty sorties, as each sortie averages about five hours. The aircraft range all over southern Afghanistan, waiting for troops below to call for some air support. The A-10, nicknamed "Warthog" or just "hog", could always fly low and slow and was designed, and armored, to survive a lot of ground fire. The troops trust the A-10 more than the F-16 or any other aircraft used for ground support.

A-10s Move On

The A-10 is a 23 ton, twin engine, single seat aircraft whose primary weapon is a multi-barrel 30mm cannon originally designed to fire armored piercing shells at Russian tanks. These days, the 1,174 30mm rounds are mostly high explosive. The 30mm cannon fires 363 gram (12.7 ounce) rounds at the rate of about 65 a second. The cannon usually fires in one or two second bursts. In addition, the A-10 can carry seven tons of bombs and missiles. These days the A-10 goes out with smart bombs (GPS and laser guided) and Maverick missiles. It can also carry a targeting pod, enabling the pilot to use high magnification day/night cameras to scour the area for enemy activity. Cruising speed is 560 kilometers an hour and the A-10 can slow down to about 230 kilometers an hour. In Afghanistan two drop tanks are usually carried, to give the aircraft more fuel and maximum time over the battlefield.

 

 

A-10s Move On

If there is another major war in some place like Korea or with Iran, the A-10s will once more be one of the most popular warplane with the ground troops.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 12:20
U.S. Marines with 2nd Amphibious Assault Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, storm ashore in an amphibious assault vehicle during Exercise Cobra Gold 2011 in Thailand. The Marine Corps is moving forward with plans to replace the aging AAVs with the Amphibious Combat Vehicle now under development. (Staff Sgt. Leo Salinas / U.S. Marine Corps)

U.S. Marines with 2nd Amphibious Assault Battalion, 2nd Marine Division, storm ashore in an amphibious assault vehicle during Exercise Cobra Gold 2011 in Thailand. The Marine Corps is moving forward with plans to replace the aging AAVs with the Amphibious Combat Vehicle now under development. (Staff Sgt. Leo Salinas / U.S. Marine Corps)

 

May 28, 2013: Strategy Page

 

In April 2013 DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) awarded a million dollar prize to a three man design team (Team Ground Systems) for proposing the most promising concept for the new Marine Corps Amphibious Combat vehicle (ACV).  The winner beat out a thousand other proposals. DARPA is offering another million dollar prize for the best drive train (propulsion system) design and then a two million dollar prize for a complete vehicle design. This approach may sound either very innovative or very desperate and in reality it is both. In part because the marines recently blew three billion dollars in an unsuccessful attempt to design and develop a high-speed ACV and partly because that failure made it clear that some original thinking was required.  

 

For over a decade now DARPA has used this competitive (or “crowdsourcing”) approach, especially in several competitions to develop UGVs (unmanned ground vehicles.) DARPA has been using this crowdsourcing approach successfully so the marines saw it as a possible solution to their ACV problem. The basic problem is that the marines insist that the new ACV be able move towards shore at twice the speed of the older AAV7. The inability of the previous EFV design to accomplish that cost the marines three billion dollars and over a decade of development effort.

American Marines Seeking New Ideas

Two years ago the marines cancelled their EFV (Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle) and have been hustling to come up with a replacement ACV design. Meanwhile they must extend the life of their current 1,057 AAV7 amphibious armored vehicles. These entered service three decades ago and are falling apart. Moreover, some two thirds of the AAV7s saw service in Iraq, where they got as much use in two months as they normally did in two years of peacetime operations. Most AAV7s are already scheduled for refurbishing, so they can still be used until the end of the decade, or whenever a permanent replacement can be found.

 

The marines how have two replacement vehicle projects going. The MPC (Marine Personnel Carrier) is a $4.5 million wheeled, amphibious armored vehicle. This would be similar to the Stryker, but a bit larger and modified for amphibious operations. This project is proceeding because it is low-risk (in the technology department) and the marines need some kind of armored vehicle to replace AAV7s that are dying of old age. The $12 million ACV is the EFV without most of the expensive stuff that didn't work. In effect, the ACV will be a 21st century version of the AAV7, optimized to pass all its development tests and get into service as quickly as possible. The marines do not want to be reminded of the EFV.

AAV7s Come Ashore Somalia

AAV7s Come Ashore Somalia

The cancelled EFV ended up costing over ten times as much as the $2.5 million AAV7 (taking inflation into account). The marines apparently felt they could get by with half as many amphibious armored vehicles because future wars are likely to be more dependent on delivering troops by air, or moving them around in armored hummers. While there was some thought of dispensing entirely with vehicles like this, which were first used in 1943, more traditionalist minds prevailed. That may change, especially since the cheaper MPC is more likely to survive the budget battles than the ACV.

 

The EFV had been threatened with cancellation for several years, mainly because the vehicle was too expensive and didn't work. Well, parts of it worked. Three years ago, tests revealed that the EFV had similar survivability characteristics to MRAPs, when hit with roadside bombs or anti-vehicle mines. The EFV needed all the good news it could get, but marines were already using MRAPs in Afghanistan, and are quite happy with them.

 

The EFV was previously called the AAAV (Advanced Amphibious Assault Vehicle). Weighing nearly 36 tons, the EFV was 3.4 meters (10.5 feet) tall, 3.9 meters (12 feet) wide and just under 10 meters (30 feet) long. It was armed with a 30mm automatic cannon (MK34 Bushmaster) and a 7.62 mm co-axial machine gun. The EFV also had better armor protection and electronics than the AAV7. The EFV was about 25 percent heavier than the AAV7, and somewhat larger.

American Marines Seeking New Ideas

The EFV had been in development for over a decade and delays were mostly because of a complex water-jet propulsion system which, when it worked, allowed it to travel at 60 kilometers an hour while in the water. This capability was specified to reduce the danger (from enemy fire) when the EFVs were moving from their transports to shore, a distance of 30-50 kilometers. The additional gear required for the water jet system made the vehicle less robust and reliable, and fixing those problems took too much time. Otherwise, the EFV was basically a truly amphibious Infantry Fighting Vehicle (IFV), similar to the army's smaller M-2 Bradley. The EFV had a crew of three, and carried 18 passengers.

 

In retrospect, the marines could have just built the ACV, using mature technologies and staying away from the high speed (and high tech) water jet system that provided a capability that was not really critical. But that's hindsight. Lesson, hopefully, learned. But with much tighter budgets looming, the marines may run out of money, not patience, this time around. The proposed ACV is also very expensive, and the MPC is not as capable (for amphibious operations) as the current AAV7. All they may end up with is some refurbished AAV7s, and maybe not many of those either. The budget situation is grim, leaving the usually unstoppable Marine Corps running into an immovable object.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 11:35
Un chasseur américain F-15 tombe en mer au large du Japon, le pilote survit

28 mai 2013 Romandie.com (AFP)

 

TOKYO - Un chasseur américain F-15 est tombé en mer mardi après que son pilote s'est s'éjecté au large de l'île japonaise d'Okinawa, a annoncé l'armée de l'air américaine.

 

Un appareil de la base aérienne de Kadena a connu un problème qui a finalement entraîné l'éjection de son pilote au-dessus de l'océan Pacifique, à environ 110 km à l'est d'Okinawa, a expliqué l'armée de l'air dans un communiqué.

 

Des équipes de secours américaine et japonaise sont parties chercher le pilote, qui s'est apparemment éjecté sans dommage et se trouve en contact avec les secouristes.

 

Les garde-côtes japonais participent aux recherches. Nous avons envoyé des avions et des bateaux sur zone après avoir reçu un appel à l'aide de la base aérienne de Kadena, une importante base militaire américaine de l'océan Pacifique, a expliqué un responsable des garde-côtes à l'AFP.

 

La base de Kadena est située sur l'île d'Okinawa (sud), où sont stationnés plus de la moitié des 47.000 soldats américains du Japon. La population locale se plaint souvent de l'insécurité et des nuisances provoquées par cette présence massive.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 11:35
Des systèmes d'armement américains espionnés par des Chinois

28.05.2013 Romandie.com (ats)

 

Les plans de plus d'une vingtaine de systèmes d'armement américains ont été espionnés par des pirates informatiques chinois, rapporte le "Washington Post". Les programmes visés portent sur des avions et navires de combat, ainsi que sur des systèmes de missiles essentiels à la sécurité de pays européens.

 

Citant un rapport rédigé par le conseil scientifique de Défense pour le Pentagone, le journal mentionne notamment le missile Patriot, le système de défense antimissile Aegis de l'US Navy, l'avion de chasse F/A-18, l'hélicoptère Black Hawk (Faucon noir) et l'avion F-35.

F35 photo Lockheed Martin

F35 photo Lockheed Martin

L'article ne précise ni l'ampleur ni le calendrier de ces piratages informatiques.

 

Perturber leur fonctionnement

 

Le "Washington Post" juge que cet espionnage pourrait permettre à la Chine de perturber le fonctionnement de ces systèmes dans le cadre d'un éventuel conflit, mais aussi d'accélérer le développement technologique de sa propre armée.

 

Dans un rapport remis ce mois-ci au Congrès, le Pentagone affirmait que la Chine recourait à l'espionnage pour moderniser son armée et que les Etats-Unis avaient été la cible d'actes de piratage informatique "directement imputable à l'armée et au gouvernement chinois". Pékin a dénoncé un rapport dénué de tout fondement.

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28 mai 2013 2 28 /05 /mai /2013 10:58
Les majors américaines visées par des cyber-attaques iraniennes

27/05/2013 Nabil Bourassi – laTribune.fr

 

Selon le Wall Street Journal et le New York Times, l'Iran mènerait des cyber-attaques contre le système de gestion informatique des infrastructures pétrolières et gazières américaines. Les deux pays se livrent à une guerre cybernétique larvée depuis l'attaque du virus Stuxnet contre l'Iran en 2010.

 

Après la Chine, l'Iran... D'après le New York Times et le Wall Street Journal, des cyber-attaques visant des systèmes informatiques d'infrastructures énergétiques américains seraient à l'œuvre. Les hackers s'en prennent notamment à des systèmes de contrôle des pipelines de pétrole et de gaz, et des réseaux de distribution d'énergie aux Etats-Unis.

 

Un conflit politique

 

Ces tentatives d'infraction seraient commandées depuis l'Iran d'après ces journaux citant des officiels gouvernementaux américains. Jusqu'à maintenant, les autorités américaines s'étaient focalisées sur la Chine, accusée de déployer d'importants moyens à des fins d'intelligence économique. Cette fois, les motifs seraient davantage d'ordre politique puisque les deux pays s'affrontent régulièrement sur des problèmes géopolitiques régionaux, mais également sur le programme de recherche nucléaire mené par Téhéran. En outre, l'Iran a été très critiqué ces derniers jours, notamment par Washington, après l'invalidation de plusieurs candidats réformistes en vue de l'élection présidentielle du 14 juin prochain et qui devrait donc se jouer autour de candidats conservateurs.

 

Cyber-attaque spectaculaire

 

En matière de guerre informatique, les deux pays ont engagé depuis plusieurs années un conflit larvé mais qui a connu quelques épisodes spectaculaires comme l'attaque du virus Stuxnet en 2010. Cette attaque avait surpris l'Iran par son ampleur: près de 40.000 ordinateurs mis hors service. Le gouvernement iranien avait alors accusé les Etats-Unis et Israël d'avoir élaboré ce virus informatique, reconnu d'une grande complexité par les experts informatiques. Ce virus visaient notamment les infrastructures informatiques liées aux programmes de recherche nucléaire. De son côté, le gouvernement israélien n'avait pas nié la paternité de l'attaque. "Il est justifié, pour quiconque considère la menace iranienne comme une menace significative, de prendre différentes mesures, y compris celle-là, pour la stopper', avait alors déclaré Moshé Yaalon, ministre israélien des Affaires stratégiques et vice-Premier ministre.

 

Première riposte iranienne en Arabie Saoudite

 

Début 2012, les autorités iraniennes avaient déclaré avoir identifié un nouveau virus, Flame, un programme informatique espion capable de récolter des données. Téhéran avait encore accusé Israël et les Etats-Unis d'avoir engagé un conflit cybernétique et promis d'y répondre. La première riposte de l'Iran s'est produite l'été dernier. Elle a visé Saudi Aramco, la principale compagnie pétrolière de l'Arabie Saoudite, premier producteur mondial de pétrole. Cette attaque avait neutralisé le parc informatique de l'entreprise. Pendant plusieurs semaines, l'entreprise qui pèse  260 milliards de dollars de chiffre d'affaires et 55.000 salariés, n'avait plus que le fax pour continuer à communiquer.

 

D'après des spécialistes, l'Iran disposerait d'un véritable régiment de hackers, formés depuis les années 1990, soit bien avant certaines grandes puissances industrielles. L'Iran aurait renforcé ses dispositifs de cyber-Défense depuis 2010 et la puissante attaque de Stuxnet.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 18:20
Raptors Returning To The Nest

5/26/2013 Strategy Page

Three F-22 Raptors land May 17, 2013, at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska. The Raptors were flown by Reserve pilots assigned to the 302nd Fighter Squadron during a recent 477th Fighter Group monthly training weekend. During the week, the 477th, AlaskaÂ’s only Reserve unit, integrates with the active-duty 3rd Wing here. (U.S. Air Force photo/Tech. Sgt. Dana Rosso)

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 17:20
USS George H.W. Bush Completes Historic Underway

May 27, 2013 ASDNews Source : US Navy

 

The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) returned to its homeport of Norfolk after a successful completion of new defense testing during a two-week underway period, May 24.

 

The ship tested a new torpedo self defense system, completed more than 115 launches and landings in assessing a precision landing system, all while launching the first carrier based unmanned aircraft in naval aviation history.

USS George H.W. Bush Completes Historic Underway

The X-47B Unmanned Combat Air System Demonstrator (UCAS-D) was launched from the ship in conjuction with the Navy/Northrop Grumman team, May 14. The unmanned aircraft flew over Maryland's Eastern Shore before landing safely at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md.

 

"We saw a small, but significant pixel in the future picture of our Navy as we begin integration of unmanned systems into arguably the most complex warfighting environment that exists today: the flight deck of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier," said Vice Adm. David Buss, commander, Naval Air Forces.

 

The X-47B returned to the ship three days later to conduct its first touch-and-go landing on an aircraft carrier. Capt. Jaime Engdahl, the Unmanned Combat Air Systems program manager, took time to thank the crew during an all-hands call May 23, the night before the ship arrived into port.

 

"I hope all of you are proud of where you're standing," said Engdahl. "It's a changed world now. We launched a few naval aviation firsts and you were all there."

 

USS George H.W. Bush is in port conducting training operations in preparation for the upcoming underway schedule.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 17:20
Boeing-built WGS-5 Satellite Enhances Tactical Communications for Warfighters

May 27, 2013 ASDNews Source : The Boeing Company

 

    5th Wideband Global SATCOM spacecraft sends 1st signals from orbit

    Satellite functioning and ready for post-launch testing

 

Boeing [NYSE: BA] has received the first on-orbit signals from the fifth Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite it is delivering to the U.S. Air Force to give warfighters greater access to fast, secure communications that help them complete their missions more safely and effectively.

 

After reaching final orbit, WGS-5 will complete several maneuvers and tests before beginning operations.

 

WGS-5, part of the upgraded Block II series, will continue to extend the global reach of the WGS system to more users. The spacecraft and its ground terminals can operate in X- and Ka-band frequencies, and coverage areas can be shaped to meet users’ needs. WGS-5 also adds additional bandwidth to the system, addressing a critical need of the U.S. Department of Defense.

 

“This satellite is going to strengthen an important tool that warfighters count on to be successful and safe,” said Craig Cooning, vice president and general manager of Boeing Space & Intelligence Systems.

 

WGS-5 launched on a United Launch Alliance Delta IV vehicle today at 8:27 p.m. Eastern time from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station. Controllers in Australia confirmed initial contact with the spacecraft 59 minutes later, indicating that the vehicle is functioning normally and ready to be moved into geosynchronous Earth orbit.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 12:20
Un F-35 se trouve ici en montage final (Photo Lockheed Martin)

Un F-35 se trouve ici en montage final (Photo Lockheed Martin)

25/05/2013 par Nicolas Laffont – 45eNord.ca

 

Pour la première fois depuis le début du programme, le Département américain de la Défense note que le programme de l’avion de chasse de 5e génération F-35 de Lockheed Martin connaît une baisse dans ses coûts.

Dans un rapport annuel déposé au Congrès, le Pentagone indique que 78 de ses programmes vont connaître cette année une hausse des coûts d’environ 2,4%, soit 40 milliards $. Cette hausse serait dû en grande partie à cause de modifications comptables et de commandes plus importantes que prévues.

En revanche, le Pentagone précise que le programme de développement et de construction du F-35 de Lockheed Martin va connaître pour la première fois de son histoire, une baisse de 1% de ses coûts. Le programme est désormais estimé à 391,2 milliards $ contre 395,7 milliards $ comme l’indiquait le précédent rapport de l’an dernier.

Dans le détail, le rapport précise que la baisse n’a lieu que dans le sous-programme de l’avion en lui-même et non le sous-programme des moteurs.

Ainsi, les coûts du sous-programme de l’avion sont passés de 331,9 milliards $ en 2011 à 326,9 milliards l’an dernier (-1,5%), et les coûts du sous-programme des moteurs sont passés de 63,9 à 64,3 milliards $.

«C’est la première année qu’une réduction des coûts a été notée. Nous allons travailler avec le Bureau du programme du F-35 [au Pentagone] afin de mettre en œuvre des mesures qui se traduiront par de nouvelles baisses importantes du coût total du programme», a déclaré le porte-parole de Lockheed Martin Michael Rein.

La raison principale de la réduction est une baisse des taux de main-d’œuvre pour Lockheed, Pratt et leurs sous-traitants, ainsi que le fuselage qui a été revu et les estimations de sous-traitance.

Le rapport dit également que le coût moyen du modèle F-35A, hors coûts de R&D, a chuté à 76,8 millions $ par avion, comparativement à 78,7 millions $ un an plus tôt. C’est ce modèle là que le gouvernement du Canada souhaite acquérir.

Lockheed Martin développe trois modèles de son avion de chasse monoplace F-35, pour l’US Air Force, l’US Navy et le Marine Corps, ainsi que pour huit pays qui participent financièrement à son développement: la Grande-Bretagne, l’Australie, le Canada, la Norvège, le Danemark, l’Italie, les Pays-Bas et la Turquie. Israël et le Japon ont également placé des commandes.

Les plans actuels prévoient que la Défense américaine et ses alliés achèteront un total de 2 443 avions F-35 dans les prochaines années, avec une possibilité de 721 appareils supplémentaires, bien que de nombreux analystes estiment que la montée en puissance des pressions budgétaires pourraient finalement réduire le nombre total.

L’entreprise de défense américaine, Lockheed Martin, était de passage à Montréal ce mercredi 22 mai. Accompagnée du pilote d’essai et ancien membres des Forces armées canadiennes Billie Flynn et de représentants de l’industrie canadienne, Lockheed Martin a présenté son simulateur mobile de cockpit de F-35 et donné les dernières nouvelles de son avion phare afin de convaincre médias et opinion publique que son avion est le meilleur choix possible pour le Canada.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 12:20
U.S. Navy Moves Ahead With Small Tactical UAVs

May 25, 2013. David Pugliese - Defence Watch

 

From Naval Air Systems Command in the U.S.:

 

The Department of the Navy announced May 15 that the RQ-21A Small Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System (STUAS) received Milestone C approval authorizing the start of low rate initial production.

 

With MS C approval, the RQ-21A program, managed by the Navy and Marine Corps STUAS program office (PMA-263) here at NAS Patuxent River, enters the production and deployment phase of the acquisition timeline, according to the PMA-263 Program Manager Col. Jim Rector.

 

“This milestone allows us to provide our warfighter with a unique capability – an organic UAS capable of operations from both land and sea,” said Rector.  “The RQ-21A will provide persistent maritime and land-based tactical Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition data collection and dissemination capabilities.”

 

The Navy awarded Insitu, Inc., an Engineering Manufacturing Development (EMD) contract for STUAS in July 2010.  Since then, the government/industry team has executed land-based developmental tests (DT), operational tests at China Lake, Calif. in December 2012 and conducted the first sea-based DT from USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19) in February.

 

Concurrently, Marines are flying an Early Operational Capability (EOC) system at Twenty Nine Palms, Calif. for pre-deployment preparation. Lessons learned from EOC will be applied to operational missions in theater.

 

The aircraft is based on Insitu’s Scan Eagle UAS, which has flown more than 245,000 hours in support of Navy and Marine Corps forward deployed forces via a services contract. The RQ-21A system has a 25 pound payload capacity, ground control system, catapult launcher and unique recovery system, known as Skyhook, allowing the aircraft to recover without a runway.

 

The RQ-21A includes Day/Night Full Motion Video (FMV) cameras, infrared marker and laser range finder, and Automatic Identification System (AIS) receivers.  The ability to rapidly integrate payloads allows warfighters to quickly insert the most advanced and relevant payload for their land/maritime missions and counter-warfare actions.

 

“The expeditionary nature of the RQ-21A makes it possible to deploy a multi-intelligence capable UAS with minimal footprint, ideal for amphibious operations such as a Marine Expeditionary Unit conducts,” Rector said. “The RQ-21A can be operated aboard ship, and then rapidly transported ashore as either a complete system or just a “spoke”, or control center, making this system ideally suited for humanitarian or combat operations, where getting real-time intelligence to the on-scene commander is crucial.”

 

The DoN plans to purchase a total of 36 STUAS systems, each with five aircraft.  Initial Operational Capability is scheduled for second quarter fiscal year 2014.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 11:35
Northrop adds Australian suppliers

CANBERRA, Australia, May 24 (UPI)

 

Three Australian companies have joined Northrop Grumman's global supply chain network, gaining $7.4 million in contracts.

 

The U.S. company said the companies selected under the Australian Defense and Materiel Organization's Global Supply Chain Program are Electro Optic Systems, CEA Technologies and Insitec.

 

Those companies, with expertise in aerospace hardware and software, will supply a variety of products and services for Northrop programs.

 

"Northrop Grumman's commitment to Australia is underscored by genuine and direct investment in the Australian economy," said David Perry, vice president and chief global business development officer, Northrop Grumman.

 

"EOS, CEA Technologies and Insitec represent Australia's vibrant defense industry and are key additions to our Australian industry team.

 

"Each of these relationships strengthens our ability to deliver products and services critical to maintaining the national security of the United States, Australia and our allies.

 

"We look forward to further expanding our global supply chain and to future investment in Australia's defense, aerospace and space sector," he said.

 

Northrop Grumman and the Australian Department of Defense in 2011 agreed to cooperate to identify opportunities in which Australian industry could work with the company.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
Boeing ready to build first KC-46 tanker

24 May 2013 By Dave Majumdar– FG

 

Washington DC - Boeing will start building the first KC-46 tanker for the US Air Force during June 2013, a company official says.

 

"Starting in one month, we will begin final assembly of the wing structure," says Jake Howitt, Boeing's deputy KC-46 programme manager. "On 26 June we load the first tanker parts into the wing final assembly jig up at Everett [Washington]."

 

The start of final assembly is proceeding ahead of the 767-based aircraft's critical design review, which will finalise its engineering blueprints.

 

The debut flight of the full KC-46 should occur in the first quarter of 2015, Howitt says. But the 767-2C airframe, which the tanker is based on, is likely to be flown in the middle of 2014, before being modified for the air force. Boeing is hoping for a so-called milestone C production decision by the third quarter of 2015, he adds.

 

The first operational KC-46 is expected to be delivered in 2016, with Boeing's contract with the USAF requiring that 18 aircraft are operational by 2017. Full-rate production, which should be around 15 per year, will start around the same time, with an eventual total of 179 to be produced for the USAF.

 

Boeing is already talking to international customers about the KC-46, Howitt says. There is a lot of interest in the development and, over 10 years, international sales of between 25 and 50 airframes could be generated, he says.

 

Boeing should have the capacity to start building airframes for international customers in 2018.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
source US Navy

source US Navy

 

 

May 27, 2013 ASDNews Source : General Dynamics Corporation

 

On Thursday, May 23, General Dynamics Bath Iron Works celebrated the keel laying of Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), the second ship in the planned three-ship Zumwalt class of guided-missile destroyers.

 

The ship is named for Petty Officer Second Class Michael Monsoor, a U.S. Navy SEAL who was killed in Ramadi, Iraq, in 2006. Monsoor was on a joint SEAL-Iraqi Army team operating from a rooftop when an insurgent threw a grenade at them. Monsoor jumped on the grenade, covering it and saving three fellow SEALS and eight Iraqi Army soldiers. Monsoor posthumously received the Medal of Honor from President George W. Bush on April 8, 2008. He was also awarded the Bronze Star and the Silver Star for his service in Iraq.

 

Michael Monsoor’s parents, Sally and George Monsoor, authenticated the keel at Bath Iron Works on May 23. Sally Monsoor is the ship’s sponsor. A special steel plate containing the initials of Sally and George Monsoor was prepared for the ceremony. The two authenticated the laying of the keel by striking welding arcs onto the steel plate, assisted by David Brown, a 35-year Bath Iron Works welder.

 

“Thank you from the Monsoor family for your hospitality and your spirit here at the shipyard,” said Sally Monsoor. “I can't wait to come back here with my children and grandchildren.”

 

The keel unit is the 4,400-ton, heavily outfitted mid-forebody section of the ship, which was moved from the shipyard’s Ultra Hall construction facility earlier in the month onto the building ways.

 

Brent West, DDG 1000 program manager for Bath Iron Works, hosted the ceremony and welcomed the audience of several hundred Bath Iron Works employees, Navy personnel and representatives of other major subcontractors in the program.

 

“This is a special day, as it marks a milestone in the construction of a ship, a tradition that goes back to the earliest days of shipbuilding – an event that’s been done for hundreds of years in this region, and for more than 120 years here at Bath Iron Works,” said West. “Over the next two years, we will continue to build the Michael Monsoor with knowledge and expertise honed over the decades. We look forward to future visits with Mr. and Mrs. Monsoor, as we progress toward delivering a ship that is worthy of the name of Michael Monsoor.”

 

CAPT James Downey, the Navy’s DDG 1000 Class program manager, spoke about Petty Officer Monsoor’s sacrifice and encouraged those present to “build this ship for Mike.”

 

The DDG-1000 Zumwalt-class destroyer is the U.S. Navy’s next-generation, guided-missile naval destroyer, leading the way for a new generation of advanced multi-mission surface combat ships. The ships will feature a low radar profile, an integrated power system and a total ship computing environment infrastructure. Armed with an array of weapons, the Zumwalt-class destroyers will provide offensive, distributed and precision fires in support of forces ashore. Bath Iron Works is the lead designer and builder for the program which employs approximately 5,300 people.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 07:20
Amid Big F-35 Deal, P&W Sees Challengesc

May. 26, 2013 - By AARON MEHTA – Defense News

 

WASHINGTON — Pratt & Whitney has signed a $1 billion contract for the fifth batch of F-35 Joint Strike Fighter engines and expects to sign a sixth contract shortly, according to the company’s head of military engines.

 

The low-rate initial production (LRIP) contract with the US military includes 35 jet engines — 32 for installation and three spares — as well as sustainment, support and spare parts. The engines will power 22 of the F-35As for the US Air Force, three of the jump-jet F-35Bs for the Marine Corps and seven F-35C carrier variants for the Navy. Through the first four LRIPs, Pratt has delivered 98 engines to the F-35 program.

 

“We were able to close the LRIP-5 contract for about a 6 percent price reduction relative to LRIP-4, so we continue to get good cost reductions,” Bennett Croswell, president of Pratt’s military engines division, told Defense News last week.

 

As part of the contract, Pratt has taken on 100 percent risk on cost overruns, a move Croswell described as proof “we have confidence in our ability to hit the cost targets.” He also said that taking on risk may facilitate the signing of LRIP-6, which he hoped would be done “soon.”

 

During the interview, Croswell highlighted Pratt’s “War on Costs,” a 2009 plan to bring the price of the high-tech F-135 engine down to that of the older F-119 design, despite significant upgrades to thrust and weight.

 

Since the delivery of the first production representative engine, costs on the F-135 have dropped by 40 percent, Croswell said. Those cost savings are also seen in the contract for LRIP-5, which saw a 6 percent drop in cost from LRIP-4.

 

Despite two well-publicized engine problems this year, Croswell said he believes the relationship between Pratt and the Pentagon’s F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) is strong.

 

“I think we have a great relationship with [Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher Bogdan, the head of the JPO], and as long as we continue to deliver, I suspect we will continue to have that relationship.”

 

In January, the Marine Corps’ F-35B variant was grounded following an engine problem during a test flight. The source of that problem was later identified as an improperly crimped line in the fueldraulic system. Nine days after the jump-jet variants were cleared to resume flights, the entire JSF fleet was grounded when a crack was discovered in one of the blades in the Pratt-designed engine. The following week, Bogdan heavily criticized both Pratt and Lockheed for “trying to squeeze every nickel” out of the program.

 

“I think the JPO customer is satisfied with how we handled the situation. Gen. Bogdan makes great points. He thinks that contractors should accept more risk on the program. I agree with him,” Croswell said, pointing to Pratt’s internal investment of $60 million of its own money as an example of how the company has taken on some of that risk.

 

Engine Sales

 

Despite the movement on F-135 sales, Croswell said the company knows there are challenges on the horizon.

 

A series of decisions to push F-35 purchases to the right has halved expected F-135 sales since 2009. Combined with the end of production on the F-119 and slowed sales on the F-117 and F-100 engines, the company is facing a production gap Croswell referred to as a “bathtub.”

 

He expects a total of 75 engine sales in 2015. While that number should increase in later years as F-35 sales grow, it leaves the company in a tricky situation of planning for the future while in a low period.

 

To help bridge that gap, Croswell said Pratt is looking for ways to use existing engine designs for new platforms.

 

“A lot of the newer platforms that are being considered for the future, they’re not going to buy a thousand of them,” he said. “So across the board, we need to find ways to deliver good propulsion capability without large development costs. So we are looking at any off-the-shelf engine we have. We’ll look at our whole suite of engine capability and see what meets the future requirements.”

 

As an example, he pointed to the Navy’s X-47B unmanned aircraft, which runs on an F-100 jet engine, an older model designed for the Air Force’s F-15 and F-16 fighters.

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27 mai 2013 1 27 /05 /mai /2013 07:20
Congress orders F-35 Software Plan

May 24th, 2013 by Kris Osborn - defensetech.org

 

Congress ordered the Pentagon to establish an independent team consisting of subject matter experts to review the development of software for the Joint Strike Fighter program.

 

The House Armed Services Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee asked the Pentagon to submit a report by March 3, 2014 as part of the committee’s markup of the 2014 defense budget. The F-35 software program has served as one of the largest challenges for program engineers to keep on schedule.

 

“The committee continues to support the F-35 development and procurement program, and believes a software development review by the Department will ensure that the F-35 program remains on schedule to provide a fifth generation capability in support of our national security strategy,” the Congressional language states.

 

The JSF program developmental strategy is, in part, grounded upon a series of incremental software “drops” — each one adding new capability to the platform. In total, there are more than 10 billion individual lines of code for the system, broken down into increments and “blocks,” F-35 program office officials explained.

 

“Software development remains a focus area of the joint program office. We have a solid baseline and we need to be able to execute on that,” said Joe DellaVedova, F-35 program office spokesman.

 

Software drop 2B is undergoing flight testing at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., and Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md; software Block 2B builds upon the enhanced simulated weapons, data link capabilities and early fused sensor integration of the Block 2A software drop, DellaVedova added.

 

“With Block 2B you can provide basic close air support and fire an AMRAAM {Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile}, JDAM [Joint Direct Attack Munition] or GBU 12 [laser-guided aerial bomb]. This allows the plane to become a very capable weapons system,” he said.

 

Overall, DellaVedova said the F-35 program office has been making substantial progress. Software drop 3I, which is a technical refresh of Block 2B, is slated to by ready by 2016.

 

“This is complicated and labor intensive work but this has leadership focus from industry and government to deliver on the promise of the F-35. With its stealth and its enhanced situational awareness, the F-35 will provide a backbone for our forces for generations to come. Our progress continues at a slow and steady pace and we are focused on completing things within the schedule and budget we’ve been given.”

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26 mai 2013 7 26 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
La ministre Findlay annonce un contrat visant à soutenir les biens spatiaux militaires canadiens

NR-13.174 - le 24 mai 2013 forces.gc.ca

 

OTTAWA – L’honorable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, c.r., ministre associée de la Défense nationale et députée de Delta–Richmond Est, a annoncé aujourd’hui l’octroi d’un contrat d’une valeur estimée à 11,4 millions de dollars à MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. afin d’assurer le soutien en service des capacités du Système non classifié de connaissance de la situation par télédétection dans le cadre du Projet de soutien spatial conjoint.

 

« Dans le théâtre, l’accès à de l’information visuelle fiable, ponctuelle et exacte est essentiel à la planification et à la réalisation des opérations », a annoncé la ministre Findlay. « Ce type de technologie par satellite est capital pour les missions militaires, car il permet aux commandants de télécharger des images à partir de satellites commerciaux qui passent, ce qui améliore grandement leur connaissance de la situation. »

 

Le système non classifié de connaissance de la situation par télédétection permettra aux commandants de télécharger des images satellite à haute résolution du terrain local directement dans le théâtre. Pour ce qui est des opérations nationales, les images de Système non classifié de connaissance de la situation par télédétection peuvent être utilisées de diverses manières, notamment pour soutenir des interventions de secours aux sinistrés et de mesures de sécurité, ainsi que pour aider d’autres organisations gouvernementales, comme Sécurité publique Canada, à obtenir l’accès à des renseignements opportuns provenant de l’espace. 

 

« Le contrat annoncé aujourd’hui constitue le plus récent exemple de l’engagement de notre gouvernement à fournir aux hommes et aux femmes des Forces armées canadiennes l’équipement dont ils ont besoin pour effectuer leurs tâches en toute sécurité », a expliqué la ministre Findlay. « En même temps, en offrant des possibilités d’emploi à temps plein dans le secteur canadien de l’aérospatiale, cet investissement contribue à la santé économique de la collectivité de Richmond. »

 

MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. se verra confier une grande partie du soutien en service, y compris le soutien général et la maintenance des systèmes, la logistique ainsi que le soutien à l’instruction, conformément aux dispositions du contrat. Cela réduit les exigences imposées au personnel militaire, qui peut ainsi se concentrer sur les opérations. 

 

Des études opérationnelles et des analyses coûts-avantages ont confirmé que le Projet de soutien spatial conjoint offre la méthode la plus rapide et rentable d’obtenir de l’imagerie commerciale sur le terrain. L’utilisation de satellites commerciaux existants et de leur infrastructure terrestre établie se traduira par d’importantes économies de coûts d’acquisition et de soutien pour les Forces armées canadiennes et la population canadienne.

 

Le coût du contrat est estimé à 11,4 millions de dollars sur cinq ans; il y aura la possibilité de prolonger le contrat pour trois périodes facultatives d’un an au coût de 2,4 millions de dollars chacune.

 

Le ministère de la Défense nationale s’attend à prendre livraison du premier de deux Systèmes non classifiés de connaissance de la situation par télédétection à l’automne 2013.

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26 mai 2013 7 26 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
X-47B Touch And Go

5/17/2013 Strategy Page

 

ATLANTIC OCEAN (May 17, 2013) An X-47B unmanned combat air system (UCAS) demonstrator prepares to execute a touch and go landing on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77). This is the first time any unmanned aircraft has completed a touch and go landing at sea. George H.W. Bush is conducting training operations in the Atlantic Ocean. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Timothy Walter

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26 mai 2013 7 26 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
Wet Catshot

5/20/2013 Strategy Page

 

PACIFIC OCEAN (May 17, 2013) An F/A-18F Super Hornet assigned to the Black Knights of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 154 launches from the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68). The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Derek A. Harkins

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25 mai 2013 6 25 /05 /mai /2013 16:35
Le major-général Milner prend le commandement de la Mission de formation du Canada en Afghanistan

 

NR – 13.172 - le 24 mai 2013 forces.gc.ca

 

KABOUL, AFGHANISTAN –Le major-général Dean J. Milner a pris le commandement de la Contribution canadienne à la mission de formation en Afghanistan lors d’une cérémonie de passation de commandement qui s’est déroulée aujourd’hui au Camp Phoenix.

Le major-général Milner s’est vu confier le commandement par le major-général Jim Ferron, qui a commandé la mission des Forces armées canadiennes en Afghanistan pendant la dernière année. À l’instar de son prédécesseur, le major-général Milner assumera aussi les fonctions de commandant adjoint des opérations de la Mission de formation de l’OTAN en Afghanistan.

« Par le biais de la mission de formation, le Canada est résolu à aider les Afghans à rebâtir l'Afghanistan afin qu'il devienne un pays stable, sûr et démocratique », a dit l'honorable Peter MacKay, ministre de la Défense nationale.

Le major-général Milner prend le commandement à une période charnière pour les Canadiens en Afghanistan. En effet, avec l’arrivée de la Roto 3 durant l’été 2013, le Canada amorcera la dernière rotation de l’engagement canadien en Afghanistan. C’est dans le cadre de cette rotation que l’on entreprendra le retrait graduel des effectifs des Forces armées canadiennes.    

« C’est un grand honneur pour moi de prendre la direction de la mission de formation en Afghanistan, l’opération Attention. Les réalisations des Canadiens en Afghanistan, depuis un peu plus d’une décennie, sont remarquables et j’accepte avec humilité de diriger une deuxième fois les troupes canadiennes pour le dernier segment de cette page d’histoire de la contribution grandiose du Canada pour aider le peuple afghan », a déclaré le major-général Milner.

Après presque 13 ans d’engagement intense, la mission militaire canadienne en Afghanistan viendra à échéance le 31 mars 2014. Il s’agit de l’engagement militaire canadien le plus important depuis la guerre de Corée. Durant ce long mandat, les Forces armées canadiennes ont combattu les insurgés et aidé les Forces de sécurité nationale afghanes à acquérir les capacités nécessaires pour stabiliser et sécuriser leur pays.

À l’heure actuelle, environ 900 militaires canadiens sont déployés en Afghanistan et la vaste majorité se trouve dans la région de Kaboul.

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Note aux rédacteurs en chef :

Notice biographique du major-général Milner : http://www.cmp-cpm.forces.gc.ca/dsa-dns/sa-ns/ab/sobv-vbos-fra.asp?maction=view&mbiographyid=683

Pour plus de renseignements sur l’opération Attention : http://www.cjoc.forces.gc.ca/exp/attention/index-fra.asp

Photos de l’opération Attention : http://www.combatcamera.forces.gc.ca/site/01/opattention11/index-fra.asp

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25 mai 2013 6 25 /05 /mai /2013 16:20
Le Canada investit le projet d’hélicoptères de transport moyen à lourd

NR 13.173 - le 24 mai 2013 forces.gc.ca

 

BURNABY (Colombie-Britannique.) – L’honorable Kerry-Lynne D. Findlay, c.r., ministre associée de la Défense nationale et députée fédérale de Delta–Richmond Est, a aujourd’hui annoncé l’attribution d’un important contrat de sous-traitance qui créera des emplois en Colombie-Britannique et qui jouera un rôle important dans l’appui du projet d’hélicoptères de transport moyen à lourd.

Ce contrat de sous-traitance d’environ 5,7 M$ a été octroyé par Boeing à l’entreprise Weatherhaven, à Burnaby (C.-B.), afin de soutenir le projet d’hélicoptères de transport moyen à lourd. Cet engagement aidera à créer des emplois spécialisés de haute qualité dans la région métropolitaine de Vancouver.

« L’annonce d’aujourd’hui démontre l’engagement continu de notre gouvernement de s’assurer que nos braves hommes et femmes militaires sont dotés du matériel dont ils ont besoin pour mener à bien leurs missions de manière sécuritaire et efficace pour de nombreuses années à venir », a affirmé la ministre Findlay. « Parallèlement, notre gouvernement est fier d’annoncer que notre investissement en matériel militaire contribue aussi à la création d’emplois hautement spécialisés partout au Canada, y compris ici même, dans la région métropolitaine de Vancouver. »

L’entreprise Weatherhaven aménagera des abris portables fabriqués au Canada servant à loger les hélicoptères CH-147F lors de travaux d’entretien et de réparations et que l’Aviation royale canadienne recevra dans un proche avenir. Les abris seront transportés, au besoin, par camions et/ou par voie aérienne aux emplacements nécessaires afin de répondre aux besoins sur le terrain des Forces armées canadiennes, au Canada et à l’étranger.

Ce contrat de sous-traitante découle du contrat de 1,2 G$ octroyé à Boeing en 2009 pour l’achat de 15 hélicoptères de transport moyen à lourd de modèle Chinook F (aussi connu sous le nom de CH-147F) pour combler les besoins des FAC en matière de transports. Ces nouveaux Chinooks aideront à réaliser toute une gamme de tâches, comme le transport de matériel, de troupes et de fournitures dans le cadre d’un théâtre d’opérations, notamment l’évacuation de personnes à la suite d’un désastre naturelle.

Le modèle canadien CH-147 Chinook F offre une capacité de calibre mondial qui diffère du modèle d’hélicoptère standard CH-147F de Boeing, car il est muni de réservoirs de carburant de grande autonomie, d’un meilleur système électrique et de matériel de surviabilité des aéronefs qui satisfont aux exigences de l’environnement opérationnel du Canada. On s’attend à ce que la variante canadienne fasse l’envie de forces militaires partout dans le monde.

On prévoit l’arrivée du premier CH-147F dans un proche avenir, en respectant le calendrier et le budget prévu. Les hélicoptères seront basés à la Base des Forces canadiennes Petawawa, en Ontario.

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Note aux rédacteurs en chef/chefs des nouvelles : Une fiche d’information portant sur l’état du projet d’hélicoptères de transport moyen à lourd est accessible à l’adresse suivante : http://www.forces.gc.ca/site/news-nouvelles/news-nouvelles-fra.asp?id=4529 

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25 mai 2013 6 25 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
Seahawk Hellfire

5/21/2013 Strategy Page

 

SOUTH CHINA SEA (May 18, 2013) Two MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters assigned to the Wolf Pack of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 75 launch AGM-114 hellfire missiles during a live fire exercise. HSM 75 is part of Carrier Air Wing 11, deployed with the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Raul Moreno Jr.)

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25 mai 2013 6 25 /05 /mai /2013 11:20
Seahawk Hellfire

5/21/2013 Strategy Page

 

SOUTH CHINA SEA (May 18, 2013) Two MH-60R Sea Hawk helicopters assigned to the Wolf Pack of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 75 launch AGM-114 hellfire missiles during a live fire exercise. HSM 75 is part of Carrier Air Wing 11, deployed with the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Raul Moreno Jr.)

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