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21 décembre 2015 1 21 /12 /décembre /2015 08:20
General Dynamics Awarded $92 Million for Abrams Tank Production

 

17.12.2015 Sergyi Way

 

STERLING HEIGHTS, Mich. -- The U.S. Army TACOM Lifecycle Management Command has awarded General Dynamics Land Systems a $92.2 million contract to upgrade M1A2 System Enhancement Package (SEP) v2 Abrams tanks to the M1A2 SEP Version 3 (v3) configuration. General Dynamics is working closely with the Army to improve the survivability, maintainability, fuel efficiency, power generation and network capability of its fleet of Abrams Main Battle Tanks.

 

“Projected for full rate production within the next two years, the Abrams M1A2 SEPv3 will provide the Army with the tank they need to dominate the battlefields of the future,” said Donald Kotchman, vice president of Tracked Combat Vehicles for General Dynamics Land Systems.

 

The M1A2 SEPv3 production process will begin with a pilot program of six tanks before moving into full-rate production.

 

Work will be performed by existing employees in Anniston, Ala.; Tallahassee, Fla.; Lima, Ohio; and Scranton, Pa.

 

General Dynamics Land Systems is a business unit of General Dynamics.

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21 décembre 2015 1 21 /12 /décembre /2015 08:20
Oshkosh Resumes Work on Joint Light Tactical Vehicle

 

17.12.2015 Sergyi Way

 

The U.S. Army Tank-automotive and Armaments Command (TACOM) Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC) has directed Oshkosh Defense, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation (NYSE: OSK) company, to resume work on the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV) production contract. The JLTV program fills a critical capability gap for the U.S. Army and Marine Corps by replacing a large portion of the legacy HMMWV fleet with a light vehicle that provides unprecedented protection, off-road mobility and transportability.

 

“We are pleased that the JLTV production contract, awarded to Oshkosh in August, is now moving forward to deliver the world’s most capable light tactical vehicle,” said U.S. Army Major General (Retired) John M. Urias, executive vice president of Oshkosh Corporation and president of Oshkosh Defense. “Our JLTV is designed to safely transport Soldiers and Marines as they perform their missions ‘outside the wire’ – providing unprecedented off-road speed and mobility on future battlefields that could be virtually anywhere in the world.”

 

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) dismissed Lockheed Martin’s protest earlier today based on Lockheed’s notice that it intends to file a protest in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. Army lifted the stop work order and instructed Oshkosh to resume performance of the JLTV contract. According to the JLTV production contract, Oshkosh will begin delivering vehicles within the next 10 months, reaching an expected total volume of nearly 17,000 vehicles, as well as kits and sustainment services over an eight-year period.

 

“The Army conducted a thorough, methodical procurement including exhaustive testing and evaluation to ensure our troops get the best vehicle,” said Urias. “The Oshkosh team and our employees will immediately resume work to deliver JLTVs to our Soldiers and Marines.

 

“The JLTV program fills a critical gap in the U.S. military’s current tactical vehicle line-up,” said Urias. “The Oshkosh JLTV will give our troops new levels of payload, performance and protection in a platform that was engineered to evolve as new technologies emerge and our adversaries’ tactics change.”

 

In designing its JLTV, Oshkosh leveraged its extensive experience producing and sustaining more than 150,000 heavy, medium and protected MRAP vehicles for the U.S. and its allies. The JLTV Family of Vehicles is comprised of two seat and four seat variants, as well as a companion trailer (JLTV-T). The two seat variant has one base vehicle platform, the Utility (JLTV-UTL). The four seat variant has two base vehicle platforms, the General Purpose (JLTV-GP) and the Close Combat Weapons Carrier (JLTV-CCWC).

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19 novembre 2015 4 19 /11 /novembre /2015 18:50
photo US Army

photo US Army

19.11.2015 par 1e RI - Armée de Terre

Du lundi 19 octobre 2015 au mercredi 21 octobre inclus, un groupe du 1er régiment d’infanterie a participé à l’European BEST SQUAD, organisé par l’US ARMY. Cet événement consiste à évaluer un groupe par nation de l’OTAN. Ce raid de 72 heures comprenait 18 épreuves majeures, sur 60 kilomètres.
Volonté, dépassement de soi, cohésion et condition physique exceptionnelle ont été les mots d’ordres pour relever ce défi.
Chronométré du matin jusqu’au soir chaque épreuve est rejointe en marche commando, casque sur la tête, sac à 20kg. Les épreuves se composaient de parcours d’obstacles, de tirs tactiques au fusil et au pistolet, de diverses évacuations de blessés, d’utilisation de la messagerie OTAN, d’escalade, du franchissement et de nautisme.

Reportage photos

Reportage photos US Army

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14 novembre 2015 6 14 /11 /novembre /2015 12:20
UH-72A Lakota  photo James Darcy  Airbus Helicopters Inc.

UH-72A Lakota photo James Darcy Airbus Helicopters Inc.

 

13 novembre, 2015 Nathan Gain - FOB

 

Douze nouveaux hélicoptères Lakota viendront, à partir d’août 2017, renforcer les 50 UH-72A déjà stationnés à Fort Rucker, et destinés à former la pierre angulaire du futur programme d’entraînement des pilotes , dont le lancement est prévu pour début 2016. À terme, l’armée américaine envisage d’acquérir un total de 187 UH-72A en version d’entraînement afin de remplacer les TH-67 fabriqués par Bell Helicopter et en service depuis plus de vingt ans. Un contrat évalué à 61 millions d’euros et une bonne nouvelle pour Airbus, dont l’implantation américaine peut maintenant envisager sereinement la consolidation de sa ligne de production au-delà de 2017.

 

« Maintes et maintes fois, l’UH-72A s’est avéré être la solution la plus rentable pour répondre à la grande variété des besoins de l’armée américaine et de nos alliés, » s’est félicité Allan McArtor, directeur général d’Airbus Group Inc. « L’exécution sans faille du programme Lakota par l’armée [américaine] a prouvé que, malgré l’environnement difficile dans lequel se trouve tout programme d’acquisition, il existe des success stories aussi bien pour le contribuable que pour le combattant, » a-t-il ajouté en marge de l’annonce du contrat.

 

Le Lakota (dont le nom, à l’instar des Chinook, Apache & co, est inspiré d’une tribu indienne), n’est rien de moins que le cousin militarisé et américain du EC145 en service dans la Gendarmerie nationale et la Sécurité civile française, dotées respectivement de 15 et 35 appareils.

 

Sélectionné en 2006 dans le cadre du programme « Light Utility Helicopter » (LUH), l’UH-72A est destiné à accomplir un large spectre de missions pour l’armée américaine et la garde nationale, à savoir l’entraînement des pilotes, des missions SAR, d’évacuation médicale, de surveillance des frontières, de C2 (command & control), de transport VIP et, en toute logique, de logistique au sens large. Près de 338 Lakota sont déjà sortis des chaînes d’assemblage d’Airbus HC situées à Columbus (Mississippi) pour être livrés aux forces armées américaines, sur les 423 commandés à ce jour par le Département de la Défense américain.

 

Conçu pour répondre aux besoins spécifiques de l’US Army, l’UH-72A est capable d’atteindre une vitesse de 269 km/h grâce à ses deux moteurs Turbomeca ARRIEL 1E2. Ses pales en matériau composite diminuent les vibrations et le bruit tout en augmentant l’aérodynamisme, donc les performances opérationnelles. Doté d’un design modulaire, cet hélicoptère multirôle est capable d’emporter jusqu’à six soldats en plus de l’équipage, ou deux brancards dans sa configuration MEDEVAC. Le Lakota est également équipé de la suite avionique Meghas produite par la Thales.

 

Preuve supplémentaire du succès de ce modèle, l’armée américaine envisage désormais, au-delà des commandes additionnelles, l’introduction d’une version « B » modernisée basée sur l’EC145 T2. Avec, logiquement, d’éventuelles commandes supplémentaires pour la filiale américaine du géant des voilures tournantes.

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13 novembre 2015 5 13 /11 /novembre /2015 12:20
UH-72A Lakota - photo Airbus HC

UH-72A Lakota - photo Airbus HC

 

12 novembre 2015 Aerobuzz.fr

 

L’US Army vient de transformer ses options d’achat portant sur 12 UH-72A Lakota en commandes fermes. Airbus Helicopters a déjà livré près de 350 exemplaires de ce modèle assemblé à Columbus (USA). Les livraisons débuteront en août 2017. Les appareils seront configurés pour la formation de début.

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13 novembre 2015 5 13 /11 /novembre /2015 08:55
photo White House

photo White House

 

12-11-2015 Anne-Marie Capomaccio correspondante à Washington - RFI

 

Le capitaine d'origine française [a reçu] ce jeudi 12 novembre la Médaille d'honneur, la plus haute distinction de l'armée américaine, des mains de Barack Obama en personne. Il est décoré pour un acte de bravoure hors du commun durant son deuxième déploiement en Afghanistan. Florent Groberg est né à Poissy en 1983. Le jeune Français a choisi la nationalité américaine après les attentats du 11 septembre 2001, afin de pouvoir s'engager dans l'armée.

 

Florent Groberg ne comprend pas l'attention dont il est l'objet. La Médaille d'honneur (Medal of Honor) qu'il va recevoir à la Maison Blanche aujourd'hui est certes la plus haute distinction militaire américaine, mais le capitaine estime qu'il n'a fait que remplir sa mission. Il ne cesse de penser aux quatre compagnons d'arme qui ne sont pas rentrés d'Afghanistan : « Moi dans ma tête, quand je pense dans mon cœur, cette médaille c’est pour les gars que j’ai perdus et leur famille. J’ai fait mon travail, c’est tout. Je suis juste un soldat. Les hommes qui sont vraiment extraordinaires, c’est les quatre soldats qui ont perdu leur vie. »

 

Le 8 août 2012, Florent Groberg s'est jeté sur un kamikaze pour sauver la vie de son équipe. Il ne souhaite pas parler de ses blessures, ni des deux années passées à l'hôpital pour tenter de reconstruire sa jambe abimée. L'armée est une vocation qui vient de loin : une maman française d'origine algérienne, un oncle tué par les terroristes du GIA, le déménagement aux Etats-Unis, puis les attentats du 11 septembre 2001. Le jeune homme, né en banlieue parisienne, a choisi de s'engager dans l'armée américaine.

 

Note RP Defense: Remarks by the President in Medal of Honor Presentation to Captain Florent Groberg, United States Army

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12 novembre 2015 4 12 /11 /novembre /2015 23:20
photo White House

photo White House


12 nov. 2015 by White House

 

President Obama delivers remarks at the Medal of Honor Presentation to Captain Florent Groberg, United States Army. November 12, 2015.

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12 novembre 2015 4 12 /11 /novembre /2015 08:20
Photo: U.S. Northern Command

Photo: U.S. Northern Command

 

November 11, 2015: Strategy Page

 

On October 28th a JLENS (Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor) blimp undergoing testing at a U.S. Army base in Maryland (north of Washington DC) broke loose and drifted for nearly four hours and 240 kilometers until the deflation device (for such emergencies) activated and brought the blimp down. Because the blimp was dragging about 2,200 meters of tether (the cable that keeps the blimp in one place) some 26,000 civilians in its path (rural Maryland and Pennsylvania) lost electrical power for hours as the tether shorted out power lines. There were no injuries but all the damage and disruption is going to cost the army nearly $200 million. It is also likely to get the JLENS program shut down. While there have been JLENS type systems suffering runaway blimps in Afghanistan and Iraq, these did not make the news and were recovered and soon back in service. But a runaway blimp not far from the American capital is another matter. There were originally supposed to be 16 JLENS systems built by now but for a number of reasons there are only two and the other is in storage. JLENS technology has been useful even as JLENS itself has had many problems. The latest wandering blimp incident may prove fatal for JLENS.

 

Since the 1990s the U.S. Department of Defense has spent nearly $3 billion to develop JLENS a system that used tethered blimps to carry radars that could spot low-flying aircraft like helicopters, small planes and cruise missiles so that these targets could be attacked using missiles or autocannon, fired from the ground or the air, to destroy these hard to detect (using normal radars) targets. Even before the runaway JELENS there was a lot of political pressure to cancel JLENS because of failure to perform. Naturally it’s more complicated than that. While JLENS technology has proved very useful since September 11, 2001, there is concern that JLENS itself never achieved a high level of effectiveness and reliability in performing the task it was originally designed for. The manufacturer insists these accusations are baseless but it is true that JLENS has had several recent embarrassments when the system was not ready when needed or it was operational but did not spot the low flying threat or did spot it but could not tell if it was hostile.

 

One of the original uses JLENS was developed for was to help defend offshore oil facilities from attack by terrorist speedboats. This it was able to do after 2003 in Iraq. But in more crowded environments (like urban areas) JLENS spotted too many low flying objects but could not tell which ones were a threat and which were not. This has now become an issue because JLENS type systems are no longer in Iraq.

 

The JLENS system uses two 75 meter (233 foot) long, helium filled, unmanned blimp equipped with radar and other sensors. A JLENS blimp is about 2.5 times the size as the more familiar advertising blimp. Actually, the JLENS blimp is an aerostat, a blimp like vehicle designed to always turn into the wind and stay in the same place. The JLENS blimp is unpowered and secured by a cable (tether) that can keep the aerostat in position at its maximum altitude of 5,000 meters (15,000 feet). At that altitude the JLENS aerostat can carry a two ton payload. The cable also supplies power, which means the blimp can stay up for about 30 days at a time before it has to be brought down for maintenance on its radars. Two radars are carried in each aerostat. One is a surveillance radar, the other is a precision track and illumination radar (PTIR). The surveillance radar provides long-range coverage (over 300 kilometers, exact range is secret), while the PTIR, which is a steerable system capable of tracking multiple targets, can focus in on items of interest. Thus each JLENS can cover a huge area and can pass target data to airborne or ground based missile systems for interception.

 

A major JLENS success was using JLENS technology for similar systems defending bases in Iraq and Afghanistan from ground attack. While larger UAVs are popular, mainly for their persistence (the ability to stay in the air, over a particular area, for a long time) and some (Predator, Reaper and Global Hawk) can stay in the air for over 24 hours at a time, they still have to land regularly to be refueled or undergo maintenance. In Iraq the military found that "stationary UAVs" (helium filled aerostats or tall towers) not only do the job just as well but do it a lot cheaper (under $1000 an hour, mostly for maintenance, repairs, and personnel to monitor the sensors). Compare this to Predator, which costs $5,000 an hour to operate, and Global Hawk, which costs $25,000 an hour. Global Hawk is so expensive partly because of the high end sensors used. Not everyone needs the high flying Global Hawk or even a Predator. They just need a way to keep an eye on a large area (like a chunk of the Syrian, Iranian, or Pakistani border) 24/7. JLENS and its ground defense variant (RAID) are a much cheaper alternative and have become popular alternatives to mobile UAVs.

 

In 2004 the U.S. Army sent 22 blimps (aerostats, actually) to Iraq and Afghanistan to operate as part of RAID (Rapid Aerostat Initial Deployment) systems. These systems were based on JLENS. The blimps float at about 320 meters (a thousand feet) up, tethered by a cable that provides power and communications to the day and night cameras up there. The big problem is ground fire from rifles and machine-guns. Iraqis, in particular, like using the RAID blimps as targets. Rifle fire won't destroy the blimps but does cause them to be brought down more frequently for repairs. Bullet-hole repairs often have some of them coming down every few days. There are surveillance systems similar to RAID but mounted on tall steel towers. These also suffer gunfire damage, but rarely any that damage the equipment.

 

The first army blimp sent to Iraq in early 2004 was one of its JLENS systems. JLENS equipment was also modified to be mounted on a tower even though it was most effective when operating from the aerostat. JLENS sensors can not only detect and track low flying aircraft and missiles but also small boats and ground vehicles. Off the coast of Iraq it could detect hostile boats making a run for Iraqi oil facilities. JLENS has been used in Afghanistan as well. JLENS was still in development in 2002 but much of the tech was soon approved for mass production. In addition to providing 24/7 coverage for approaching cruise missiles JLENS can also provide a communications relay for other radars and weapons systems (anti-aircraft missiles and warplanes) to coordinate detection and destruction of cruise missiles.

 

The RAID systems (used on aerostats as well as towers) are much cheaper than JLENS, less than five million dollars each, and the army has bought over a hundred of them. When RAID aerostats operate at an altitude of a 320 meters their cameras can see out to about sixty kilometers. The smaller towers shorten that range quite a bit. The ten meter (30 foot) tower can see out to eleven kilometers, the 20 meter (60 foot) tower out to 16 kilometers, and the 27 meter (84 foot) tower out to 20 kilometers. The ten meter tower is adequate for most situations, which usually involve guarding a base. The JLENS and RAID systems are operated by air defense troops, often from the reserves or National Guard.

 

One of the two JLENS built is used for development. This included testing new capabilities being added to JLENS. In 2013 the army and air force successfully tested a new air defense capability by using its JLENS system to detect an anti-ship cruise missile and automatically pass the target data to an F-15 via its digital data link (Link 16), and enabling the pilot to launch an AMRAAM missile to intercept the incoming cruise missile. This is a major reason for the huge cost of JLENS; adding new capabilities and costs. This is a problem with most peacetime weapons development programs and JLENS is a good example of this bad habit.

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9 novembre 2015 1 09 /11 /novembre /2015 17:20
Patriot radar array (photo Raytheon)

Patriot radar array (photo Raytheon)

 

TEWKSBURY, Mass., Nov. 9, 2015 /PRNewswire

 

The United States Army is acquiring upgrade kits to make the combat-proven Patriot Integrated Air and Missile Defense system better at detecting and destroying threats, cost less to operate, and run even more reliably than it already does. The U.S. Army recently awarded Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) a contract modification to an existing contract for radar digital processor (RDP) upgrade kits, not to exceed the amount of $86.2 million.

The contract modification, previously announced on Sept 30th, will enable the U.S. Army to finish upgrading their entire inventory of Patriots.  The U.S. Army began phasing the upgrade kits into its Patriot fleet in 2013.

The U.S. and members of the 13-nation strong Patriot partnership funded development of the RDP. Patriot batteries upgraded with the RDP will:

  • Better detect and identify targets, and have enhanced surveillance.
  • Cost less to operate and maintain. The legacy processor has more than 700 components, while the RDP just has fewer than 100.
  • Have a 40% higher reliability rate than systems with the legacy component.

"When one country develops an upgrade or improvement to Patriot, that capability is made available to the entire 13-nation Partnership," said Ralph Acaba, Raytheon vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense. "With more than 220 Patriot fire units owned by 13 countries, countries whose industrial bases participate in manufacturing Patriot have a very large potential export market."

The RDP and other Patriot upgrades leverage the lessons learned from Patriot's more than 190 combat employments, 700 flight tests and 2,500-plus ground tests.

 

About Global Patriot Solutions

Raytheon's Global Patriot Solutions is the most advanced portfolio of air and missile defense technologies in the world, providing comprehensive protection against a full range of advanced threats including aircraft, tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and unmanned aerial vehicles. Continually upgraded and enhanced to leverage the latest technology, thirteen nations depend on Patriot as the foundation for their defense. 

 

About Raytheon

Raytheon Company, with 2014 sales of $23 billion and 61,000 employees worldwide, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity markets throughout the world. With a history of innovation spanning 93 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration and other capabilities in the areas of sensing; effects; and command, control, communications and intelligence systems, as well as cybersecurity and a broad range of mission support services. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Mass. For more about Raytheon, visit us at www.raytheon.com and follow us on Twitter @Raytheon.

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5 novembre 2015 4 05 /11 /novembre /2015 12:20
photo Lockheed Martin

photo Lockheed Martin

 

Nov 2, 2015 ASDNews Source : Lockheed Martin

 

The Q-53 has been successfully deployed in combat since 2010

 

 When troops need to set up and quickly track incoming threats, they rely on battlefield-proven 360-degree protection provided by the Lockheed Martin AN/TPQ-53 (Q-53) counterfire target acquisition radar . The U.S. Army announced that it will buy an additional seven Q-53 systems valued at $85 million, ensuring that the Q-53 continues to be the radar of choice to keep troops safe from persistent insurgent attacks. Additionally, Lockheed Martin was selected in June to upgrade 19 of the U.S. Army’s Q-53 radars. The high-performing hardware and software is constantly evolving to accommodate technical advances in capabilities and address global threats.

Read more

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5 novembre 2015 4 05 /11 /novembre /2015 08:20
Dash 8 US Army landing at Glasgow (2012) photo Mark Harkin

Dash 8 US Army landing at Glasgow (2012) photo Mark Harkin

 
Nov 05, 2015 defense-aerospace.com

(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Nov 05, 2015)

 

Leidos Inc., Reston, Virginia, was awarded a $661,840,250 cost-plus-fixed-fee, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract for the design, architecture engineering, configuration management, system integration, aircraft integration, testing, technical and logistics support of the Airborne Reconnaissance Low-Enhanced (ARL-E) system.

Bids were solicited via the Internet with three received with an estimated completion date of Nov. 3, 2020. Funding and work location will be determined with each order.

Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen, Maryland, is the contracting activity (W56KGY-16-D-0001).

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4 novembre 2015 3 04 /11 /novembre /2015 12:20
M109A7 Paladin Self-Propelled Howitzer photo BAE Systems

M109A7 Paladin Self-Propelled Howitzer photo BAE Systems

 

Nov 2, 2015 by Richard Tomkins. (UPI)

 

BAE Systems is continuing low-rate initial production of the M109A7 Paladin Self-Propelled Howitzer under the second option of a U.S Army contract.

 

An additional 30 sets of the weapon system -- one of which will include an M992A3 tracked ammunition carrier -- will be produced under the option, which is worth $245.3 million.

 

"The success of this program is directly attributable to the partnership between the Army and BAE Systems," said Adam Zarfoss, director of Artillery and Bradley programs at BAE Systems. "We've worked as a team to bring this much needed enhanced combat capability to the soldier to address immediate needs while providing a platform that can support future growth as requirements evolve."

 

The M109A7 Paladin Self Propelled Howitzer, or SPH, is an upgrade of the M109A6 Paladin. It uses the main armament and cab structure of the M109A6, but replaces the vehicle's chassis structure with a new design to allow for the integration of Bradley common drive-train and suspension components.

 

Technology developments from the Crusader and Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon programs are also included in the upgraded Paladin. Among them: a 600 volt on-board power generation, distribution and management system, coupled with high-voltage gun drive and projectile ramming systems.

 

BAE Systems said that with delivery of the 30 Paladin sets under the second contract option, the company would have produced 66 systems to the Army, which intends to procure a total of 580 vehicle sets.

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30 octobre 2015 5 30 /10 /octobre /2015 08:20
MC-12 Liberty taking off from Beale AFB, 25 January 2013 photo USAF

MC-12 Liberty taking off from Beale AFB, 25 January 2013 photo USAF

 

October 25, 2015: Strategy Page

 

The U.S. Air Force is giving away its 41 RC-12W electronic reconnaissance aircraft. These were acquired by the air force starting in 2008 to deal with the shortage of Predator UAVs in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now eleven RC-12Ws are going to the army, 26 to SOCOM and four to another (not named) agency. The air force does not usually give fixed wing aircraft to the army, which is one reason most of the RC-12Ws went to SOCOM. But there was still demand for the RC-12W and the air force is trying to cut expenses.

 

The MC-12s were quite useful and could stay in the air for up to eight hours per sortie. Not quite what the Predator can do (over 20 hours per sortie) but good enough to help meet the demand. The MC-12 has advantages over UAVs. It can carry over a ton of sensors, several times what a Predator can haul. The MC-12 can fly higher (11 kilometers/35,000 feet) and is faster (over 500 kilometers an hour, versus 215 for the Predator). The MC-12s cost about $20 million each, more than twice what a Predator goes for. The MC-12's crew consists of two pilots and two equipment operators. Since 2009 the air force MC-12Ws flew 79,000 combat sorties averaging about five hours each. The sensors and operators enabled ground troops to kill or capture over 8,000 Islamic terrorists along with hundreds of terrorist hideouts, bomb workshops or storage sites. 

 

The MC-12 was based on one of the most widely used, but largely unknown, military transport aircraft; the King Air twin-turboprop. There are nearly 300 in military service and it’s not surprising that most people think of the King Air as a civilian aircraft because most of the 6,000 built since the 1960s have been for commercial not military use. Yet over the decades more than a thousand King Airs have been bought, often second-hand by the military because the price was right and the King Air could get the job done.

 

The U.S. military has often used the King Air for ISTAR (Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, and Reconnaissance) work as the MC-12 or as transports (the C-12 Huron) and electronic warfare (RC-12) aircraft. There are so many King Airs out there that the military often buys used ones because they are so much cheaper and still get the job done.

 

The RC-12W electronic warfare version is crammed with vidcams, electronic sensors, jammers, and radios. This aircraft (Ceasar, for Communications Electronic Attack with Surveillance And Reconnaissance) can spend hours circling an Afghan battleground, keeping troops on the ground aware of enemy walkie-talkie and cell phone use, including location of these devices and translations of what is being discussed. The enemy is vaguely aware of what this militarized King Air can do but have no better way to communicate. Thus the few Caesar equipped aircraft sent to Afghanistan have proved very useful for the American and British troops that use them.

 

Military use of the King Air arose in the United States (where manufacturer Beechcraft is located) in the early 1970s, when the U.S. Army adopted the King Air as the RC-12 and then used it for a wide variety of intelligence missions ever since.

 

The current King Air 350 is a 5.6 ton, twin engine aircraft that evolved from the first King Airs that showed up in the 1960s as a 5.3 ton aircraft that could carry 13 passengers. In the 1960s a much improved 5.6 ton version called, until the 1990s, the Super King Air was introduced. The Super King Air is simply a slightly larger and more capable version of the original King Air.

 

The military and civilian users both admired the simplicity and sturdiness of the design. The only other civilian aircraft on the top ten list of military transports is the single engine Cessna 208. Beechcraft and Cessna are now combined into the same light aircraft division of Textron and individual models like the King Air and Cessna 208 will continue to be built and sold under the same names.

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30 octobre 2015 5 30 /10 /octobre /2015 08:20
photo NORAD

photo NORAD

 

Oct 29, 2015 by NORAD

 

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. – This morning, recovery operations commenced for the Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) fire control radar system aerostat.

Wednesday, at approximately noon EDT, the aerostat detached from its mooring station at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland. Around 4 p.m. EDT the aerostat grounded itself in a rugged, wooded area in northeast Pennsylvania. The aerostat landed in two separate but nearby sections; the tail and main body are separated by a quarter-mile. JLENS personnel in conjuction with Pennsylvania Army National Guard and Pennsylvania State Police secured the site, while a technical recovery team of military and civilian experts from Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, deployed to the site.

After the fire control radar system aerostat detatched, the surveillance aerostat was immediately lowered and secured as a precaution.

An emergency operations center has been established in Pennsylvania and the crash sites are being assessed. Recovery efforts are underway.

The Army has initiated an investigation to determine the cause of the incident. There is no indication that it may have been cyber or terrorist-related. The investigation will look at every aspect of how this incident occurred. 

For questions regarding the recovery process contact the Continental U.S. NORAD Region (CONR) at  850-283-8080. For general questions about the incident contact North American Aerospace Defense Command and U.S. Northern Command Public Affairs.

JLENS is a supporting program of the Army and Joint Integrated Air and Missile Defense, providing persistent, over-the-horizon radar surveillance and fire control quality data on Army and Joint Networks.  It enables protection from a wide variety of threats to include manned and unmanned aircraft, cruise missiles, and surface moving targets like swarming boats and tanks. 

NORAD is the bi-national Canadian and American command that provides maritime warning, aerospace warning and aerospace control for Canada and the United States. The command has three subordinate regional headquarters: the Alaskan NORAD Region at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska; the Canadian NORAD Region at Canadian Forces Base Winnipeg, Manitoba; and the Continental NORAD Region at Tyndall Air Force Base, Fla.

For more information about NORAD, refer to http://www.norad.mil.

Follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/noradnorthcom.

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28 octobre 2015 3 28 /10 /octobre /2015 17:20
Lance ballistic missile - photo US Army

Lance ballistic missile - photo US Army

 

October 24, 2015 David Axe - War is boring

 

Military didn't know old Lance rockets were in storage igloos in Alabama

 

For 30 years starting in 1962, the U.S. Army deployed Lance ballistic missiles in Europe to deter Soviet attack. Twenty feet long and weighing a ton and a half, an atomic-tipped Lance could zoom 75 miles at Mach 3 and explode with a force of up to 100 kilotons of TNT. The Army retired its last Lances in 1992 … and ultimately lost track of 27 of them at Redstone Arsenal in Alabama, according to WAAY T.V.

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16 octobre 2015 5 16 /10 /octobre /2015 16:20
Nammo Awarded M141 BDM Delivery Order

 

Oct 15, 2015 .defense-aerospace.com

(Source: Nammo AS; issued Oct 14, 2015)

 

RAUFOSS, Norway --- On September 23, Nammo was awarded Delivery Order 19 to the indefinite delivery / indefinite quantity (ID/IQ) contract to produce the M141 Bunker Defeat Munition.

Work will be completed in Mesa, Arizona and Salt Lake City, Utah with delivery in December 2016. Maximum value of the multi-year contract is $567 million USD but actual value will depend on the total quantity of rounds supplied.

M141 BDM is a direct fire, man-portable infantry assault weapon comprised of a disposable launcher and an 83mm high explosive dual purpose round.

"Nammo Talley is proud to continue the M141 BDM program with our nineteenth delivery order on this contract. We'll work relentlessly to exceed the Army's expectations for quality, on-time delivery and safe manufacturing processes", says Scott Selle, Executive Vice President of Nammo Talley, a U.S. division of the Nammo Group.


The Nammo Group is a high-technology supplier to the aerospace & defense industry. Its core businesses are military and sporting ammunition; shoulder launched munitions; rocket motors and actuators for aerospace applications; and environmentally friendly demilitarization. Nammo has 2,200 employees located in 10 countries.

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15 octobre 2015 4 15 /10 /octobre /2015 16:20
photo James Drew FG

photo James Drew FG

 

15 October, 2015 by James Drew – FG

 

Washington DC  - Lockheed Martin has displayed an evolved version of its ‘Terminator’ loitering unmanned air vehicle, which it is offering for the US Army's long-running terminator Lethal Miniature Aerial Munition System (LMAMS) programme.

 

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14 octobre 2015 3 14 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
AH-64E helicopter - photo Boeing

AH-64E helicopter - photo Boeing

 

13 October, 2015 BY: Stephen Trimble - FG

 

Washington DC - A Lockheed Martin communications system will be replaced on the Boeing AH-64E Apache fleet as the US Army moves to standardise data links for manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T).

 

Having Apache pilots communicating and controlling unmanned air systems (UAS) in flight is a central element of the army’s strategy for replacing the armed scout role now performed by the Bell Helicopter OH-58D Kiowa Warrior. But the transition to the MUM-T future has been complicated by a fleet of UAS fielded with incompatible data links.

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14 octobre 2015 3 14 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
Hesco Armor Wins US Army Contract

 

ABERDEEN, Washington, October 12, 2015 /PRNewswire

 

Hesco Armor, Inc. wins a share of a $49.5M indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity (IDIQ) body armor contract to supply the next generation of Small Arms Protective Inserts (SAPI) to the US Army

 

The competitively awarded contract has been shared between three armor manufactures to satisfy U.S. Army Security Assistance Command's (USASAC) Foreign Military Sales requirements, and USASAC's Special Defense Acquisition Fund's Foreign Military Sales inventory requirements.

 

The IDIQ contract called for a technically proficient plate, not before seen in previously available SAPI plates. Hesco Armor plates were chosen for their next generation composite material that creates an ultra-lightweight ballistic resistant insert.

 

Awarded days after the launch of the new Hesco Group brand identity, the contract is an additional testament of The Group's commitment towards innovation and their mission to protect people and assets, whenever and wherever needed.

 

Hesco Armor CEO Stephanie Victory commented : "We are extremely pleased to have been awarded this contract. This award further demonstrates that Hesco is a leader in innovation and personnel protection. Our body armor designs and performance are a leap forward in protection for National Security and Military Personnel."

 

Hesco Armor's parent company, Hesco Bastion, is a long-established provider of defensives barriers for perimeter and infrastructure protection for the US Department of Defense, and synonymous with saving countless lives and now Hesco Armor, relatively new to the personal protection market, has already developed a strong following among homeland security and local law enforcement and will continue the Hesco legacy of keeping the country safe.

 

About Hesco Bastion, Inc

Hesco Bastion, Inc. part of the Hesco Group is a leader in the design and manufacture of rapidly deployable, ground-mounted, earth-filled barrier systems for the purposes of military protection, homeland security and flood protection.

 

About Armor, Inc

Hesco Armor, Inc located in Aberdeen, Washington, was founded in 2012. The company is focused on research and development and manufacturing of body armor and vehicle armor that will bring enhanced safety and advanced technology to the men and women of the US Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, other federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.

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13 octobre 2015 2 13 /10 /octobre /2015 16:20
Sailors replace 20mm dummy ammunition, left, with tunsten 20mm rounds on a Phalanx weapon. Photo by PH1 Tina M. Ackerman/ U.S. Navy

Sailors replace 20mm dummy ammunition, left, with tunsten 20mm rounds on a Phalanx weapon. Photo by PH1 Tina M. Ackerman/ U.S. Navy

 

DULLES, Va., Oct. 12 By Richard Tomkins   (UPI)

 

Orbital ATK is producing medium- and large-caliber ammunition under multiple U.S. Army contracts.

 

Orbital ATK is to produces medium- and large-caliber ammunition for the U.S. military and allied nations under a U.S. Army contracts worth $105 million. The orders from the U.S. Army Project Manager Maneuver Ammunition Systems are for 20mm, 25mm and 30mm tactical and target practice ammunition for air, sea and land weapons platforms and 120mm tactical and training ammunition for the Abrams Main Battle Tank. "We are committed to being the partner of choice for the production and development of ammunition for a wide variety of combat systems," said Dan Olson, vice president and general manager of Orbital ATK's Armament Systems Division of the Defense Systems Group. "Our contributions to the soldier are to provide a continuous supply of ammunition for training and tactical use, and to develop ammunition that provides a distinct combat advantage for those defending their nation's security."

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13 octobre 2015 2 13 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
Marines load ammunition into an Abrams tank. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John M. McCall.

Marines load ammunition into an Abrams tank. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John M. McCall.

Marines load ammunition into an Abrams tank. U.S. Marine Corps photo by Cpl. John M. McCall.

 

DULLES, Va., Oct. 9 By Richard Tomkins (UPI)

 

Orbital is to develop a new 120mm multi-purpose round for tanks under a first-phase development contract from the U.S. Army.

 

Next-generation, multi-purpose 120 millimeter ammunition is to be developed for U.S. Abrams tanks by Orbital ATK. The U.S. Army contract for first-phase development work is worth $16 million. "Our ammunition innovations like advanced kinetic energy penetrators and airbursting munitions are providing combat overmatch for our warfighters -- which is our company's mission," said Dan Olson, vice president and general manager for Orbital ATK's Armament Systems division, of the Defense Systems Group. "Our ability to innovate comes from a long history of creating new capabilities for existing systems through our expertise in fuzing, warheads and platform integration." Orbital ATK said the 120mm Advanced Multi-Purpose, XM1147 High Explosive Multi-Purpose with Tracer cartridge will replace four existing rounds, including those for defeating armor and breaching reinforced walls.

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9 octobre 2015 5 09 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
Credits US Army

Credits US Army

 

Oct 8, 2015 | by Caroline Rees unmannedsystemstechnology.com

 

US Army Counter-UAV TechnologyThe US Army has announced that it has successfully demonstrated its latest counter-UAV (unmanned aerial vehicle) technology, shooting down two unmanned aircraft as part of their demonstration. Although the research project began with the objective to counter rockets, artillery and mortars, the project scope was expanded to include unmanned aerial threats.

 

“Every country has drones now, whether they are armed or not or what level of performance. This is a huge threat that has been coming up on everybody. It has kind of almost sneaked up on people, and it’s almost more important than the counter-RAM threat,” said Manfredi Luciano, project officer for the Enhanced Area Protection and Survivability, or EAPS, Army Technology Objective. The technology is being developed by the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Center, or ARDEC, at Picatinny Arsenal. Funding for development and testing was provided by the ARDEC Technology Office. The challenge has grown exponentially in the last decade as the world’s inventory of unmanned aircraft systems has grown from approximately 20 system types and 800 aircraft in 1999, to more than 200 system types and approximately 10,000 unmanned aircraft in 2010, according to Nancy Elliott, a spokeswoman with the U.S. Army’s Fires Center of Excellence on Fort Sill, Oklahoma.

 

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8 octobre 2015 4 08 /10 /octobre /2015 07:20
A truck is disabled by a Lockheed Martin laser weapon. Photo Lockheed Martin

A truck is disabled by a Lockheed Martin laser weapon. Photo Lockheed Martin

 

Oct 6, 2015 by Richard Tomkins. (UPI)

 

Bothell, Wash - A modular, high-power laser is being built for use from a U.S. Army vehicle by Lockheed Martin.

 

The 60-kilowatt fiber modules system is the first of a new generation of lasers that enters production this month at the company's facility in Washington State.

 

The system's modular laser design will allow the laser's power to be varied across a wide range -- from 60 kW to 120 kW -- depending on the specific mission and threat, Lockheed Martin said.

 

"A robust laser system with minimal operational down-time results from the integration of modular fiber-based lasers," said Iain Mckinnie, business development lead for Laser Sensors and Systems, Lockheed Martin Mission Systems and Training. "With modular lasers, the possibility of a complete system failure due to a single-point disruption is dramatically lessened."

 

Lockheed Martin said its laser combines multiple fiber modules to generate an intense laser beam. The layered approach reduces the chance for mission disruption as a result of a component failure, maintenance or repair time is also reduced.

 

"Laser weapons provide a compliment to traditional kinetic weapons in the battlefield," Lockheed Martin said. "In the future, they will offer reliable protection against threats such as swarms of drones or large numbers of rockets and mortars."

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8 octobre 2015 4 08 /10 /octobre /2015 06:20
Lockheed Martin's PAC-3 MSE interceptor at launch. Photo: Lockheed Martin.

Lockheed Martin's PAC-3 MSE interceptor at launch. Photo: Lockheed Martin.

 

Oct. 6, 2015 By Richard Tomkins (UPI)

 

Lockheed Martin delivers first enhanced PAC-3 missile interceptors to the U.S. Army.

 

DALLAS-- The U.S. Army has received its first enhanced range and improved mobility Patriot 3 interceptor missiles from Lockheed Martin. The Patriot Advanced Capability Missile Segment Enhancement, or PAC-3 MSE, interceptors were delivered Oct. 5, the company said, but the number involved was not disclosed. "We are proud to deliver these interceptors to the U.S. Army and are confident the men and women of the armed forces can count on the PAC-3 MSE when it matters most," said Scott Arnold, vice president of PAC-3 programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

 

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6 octobre 2015 2 06 /10 /octobre /2015 16:20
photo US Army RDECOM

photo US Army RDECOM

 

October 5, 2015 By Patrick Tucker

 

A researcher at the service’s Weapons and Materials Directorate lays out a vision for additive printers on the battlefield.

 

If you go by the Hype Cycle — Gartner’s annual tech-buzz assessment — then consumer 3D printing is about to tumble from the “peak of inflated expectations” into the “trough of disillusionment,” part of the coming five- to 10-year slog to the practical applications that await atop the “plateau of productivity.” But Larry “L.J.” Holmes, the principal investigator for materials and technology development in additive manufacturing at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, (ARL) isn’t waiting around for that.

In a presentation last month at the Intelligence and National Security Alliance summit, Holmes sketched out a variety of potential uses for 3D printing for the military, ranging from intelligence to communications to terraforming the battlefield. Here are a few highlights.

 

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