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15 avril 2014 2 15 /04 /avril /2014 11:35
Lockheed Martin, BAE square off for Australian trainer contract

 

April 15, 2014 by Andrew McLaughlin – FG

 

Sydney - Industry teams led by Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems in Australia have met the 31 March deadline to bid for the Australian Defence Force’s AIR 5428 pilot training system, which aims to replace the Royal Australian Air Force’s fleet of 63 Pilatus PC-9/As from 2018.

 

The successful bidder will provide the aircraft along with flight-line support, training facilities, campus accommodation and facilities, courseware, simulators and other synthetic training devices.

 

The ADF will provide flying training instructors, and the aircraft will be purchased by the Commonwealth and placed on the military register.

 

The Lockheed Martin Australia-led “Team 21” bid includes Pilatus and is offering the PC-21 advanced trainer, while partner Hawker Pacific provides simulation and maintenance, repair and overhaul services to multiple civil and military organisations in the Asia-Pacific. The Team 21 bid effectively mirrors that of the 20-year arrangement the group has with Singapore for that country’s Basic Wings Course, which is located at RAAF Pearce.

 

The other bid is from a BAE Systems Australia-led team, and is based around the Beechcraft T-6C. BAE will draw upon its experience operating interim basic flight training system (IBFTS) for the ADF, and its involvement in the UK’s military flying training system. BAE also provides in-service maintenance support for the RAAF’s Hawk 127 lead-in fighter trainers and the Army’s Boeing CH-47D Chinook fleet. Bid partner CAE Australia also operates multiple simulators under its Management and Support of ADF Aerospace Simulators contract.

 

The aircraft to be replaced are operated by the Central Flying School based at RAAF Base East Sale in Victoria, the No 2 Flying Training School at RAAF Pearce and the 4 SQN forward air controller development unit at RAAF Williamtown.

 

Also to be replaced is the industry-operated IBFTS at Tamworth, New South Wales, which performs flight screening and basic flying training for RAAF, Navy and Army pilot candidates on the Pacific Aerospace CT-4B.

 

The successful bid is expected to be selected by the end of 2014. A “second pass” contract signature is due to follow in 2015, with service entry in 2018.

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8 mai 2013 3 08 /05 /mai /2013 11:35
Flight Tests Set This Year for Australia-Developed Wing Kit for JDAM-ER

May. 7, 2013 By NIGEL PITTAWAY  - Defense news

 

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA — While Australia uses a variety of air-launched precision weapons it has not developed any such weapons beyond a wing kit for the GBU-38 Joint Direct Attack Munitions (JDAM), which are used on its F/A-18A/B Hornet and F/A-18F Super Hornet strike fighters.

 

The wing kit is manufactured in Australia and marketed by Boeing.

 

The wing kit was originally developed by Australia’s Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) in 2006 under a government-funded capability and technology demonstrator program known as Kerkanya, an Aboriginal word for kestrel hawk.

 

Boeing Australia was selected to manufacture and market the product, now called the JDAM-ER, and the Royal Australian Air Force became the first customer in 2011.

 

On March 13, Boeing announced it had selected Ferra Engineering of Brisbane to manufacture the kits on its behalf.

 

“The first wing kits will be used for JDAM-ER flight tests scheduled to be conducted later this year,” said Mike Kelly, minister for defense materiel. “Initial production orders are expected to be completed by 2015 and this program provides potential for further worldwide sales and exports.”

 

JDAM-ER utilizes a strap-on wing kit that pops-out after separation, significantly increasing stand-off range. During trials with two weapons in 2006, both struck within 1.5 meters of their intended target after a 40-kilometer-plus glide.

 

Australia is also the only country in Asia-Pacific other than the United States to use both the Lockheed Martin AGM-158A Joint Air to Surface Strike Missile (JASSM) and Raytheon AGM-154C Joint Stand Off Weapon (JSOW).

 

JASSM was acquired to provide the F/A-18A/B Hornet force with a precision stand-off strike capability between the retirement of the F-111C/AGM-142 combination in December 2010 and introduction of the F-35A, now due later in the decade.

 

Australia also became the first US Ally to operationally test the AGM-154C JSOW, with the successful launch of missile from an RAAF F/A-18F Super Hornet in December 2010. JSOW was acquired with the purchase of the 24 Super Hornets, again as a bridging capability between F-111C retirement and F-35A introduction, as it is a US Navy-standard weapon.

 

The upgraded AGM-154C-1is also being purchased for Australia’s Super Hornets, with final deliveries expected in 2014.

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26 avril 2013 5 26 /04 /avril /2013 11:35
photo Royal Australian Air Force

photo Royal Australian Air Force

 

25 April 2013 airforce-technology.com

 

The Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF) A330 multirole tanker transport (MRTT) aircraft has successfully completed tanking trials with Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornets at an undisclosed location.

 

Carried out by Canberra's Aircraft Research and Development Unit in February, the trials involved a total of 87 contacts and the transfer of approximately 76t of fuel through the hose and drogue method, with both aircraft flying within a limited envelope, Flightglobal reported.

 

Primarily conducted to assess the tanker's wake, drogue stability and the fighter's performance under an array of altitudes, conditions and aircraft configurations, the testing also sets the stage for additional trials that will certify the aircraft to support air-to-air refuelling of Super Hornets worldwide.

 

RAAF ordered five A330 MRTTs to replace its Boeing 707 tanker transporter fleet in 2005. The last was delivered to the RAAF Base Amberley in Queensland in early December 2012.

 

Designated KC-30A in the RAAF service, the aircraft is a derivative of Airbus A330 civilian airliner, and is scheduled to be operated by the No. 33 Squadron for cover hose-and-drogue refuelling and strategic passenger transport missions.

 

Equipped with two underwing refuelling pods, a fly-by-wire Airbus Military aerial refuelling boom system (ARBS) and a universal aerial refuelling receptacle slipway installation that enables refuelling from another tanker, the aircraft achieved initial operational capability in February.

 

Currently undergoing further modification on its refuelling boom and testing to enable refuelling of the E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft, C-17 Globemaster, and other MRTTs, the aircraft is expected to reach its final operating capability in 2014.

 

Capable of simultaneously performing aerial refuelling, passenger or freight transport, and medical evacuation missions, the A330 MRTTs have also been ordered by the air forces of Saudi Arabia, UAE and the UK.

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