Monthly Archives: February 2016

Croatia’s Parliament approves purchase of 16 OH-58D Kiowa helicopters

According to Air Recognition

The Defence Committee of the Croatian Parliament approved the procurement of 16 OH-58D Kiowa Warrior armed reconnaissance helicopters for a total amount of $40.94mn, the Croatian Defense Ministry website announced on Feb. 25, 2016

The project of equipment of the Croatian Armed Forces with a squadron of OH-58D Kiowa Warrior armed reconnaissance helicopters from the U.S. surplus is planned to provide new helicopter capabilities to the Croatian Armed Forces,” the country’s defense ministry said.

The contract comprises 16 OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters and three training simulators (and the supplementary goods and services) and amounts to $40,94mn. The portion of the amount will be procured through the U.S. Government support funds ($14.31mn) and the remainder from the state budget of the Republic of Croatia (position of the Ministry of Defence for the period 2016 -2020).

This batch of OH-58D Kiowa Warriors will augment Croatia’s existing helicopters squadrons, composed of Mi-171Sh, Mi-8MTV, Mi-8T and Mi-17VA multirole helicopters.

The Kiowa Warrior is the armed variant of the OH-58D Kiowa. This version is equipped with to universal weapons pylos mounted on both sides of the aircraft. These pylons can carry combinations of AGM-114 Hellfire missiles, air-to-air Stinger missiles, 7-shot 2.75 in Hydra-70 rocket pods, and an M296 .50 caliber machine gun.

@airrecognition.com

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See details of OH-58D Kiowa Warriors: HERE

 

A330-200 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT)

The Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) is an aerial refuelling tanker aircraft based on the civilian Airbus A330. The A330 MRTT has been ordered by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), Royal Air Force (RAF), United Arab Emirates Air Force, Royal Saudi Air Force and Republic of Singapore Air Force. The EADS/Northrop Grumman KC-45 was a version of the A330 MRTT proposed for the United States Air Force.

Design and development

The Airbus A330 MRTT is a military derivative of the A330-200 airliner. It is designed as a dual-role air-to-air refuelling and transport aircraft. For air-to-air refuelling missions the A330 MRTT can be equipped with a combination of any of the following systems:
  • Airbus Military Aerial Refuelling Boom System (ARBS) for receptacle-equipped receiver aircraft.
Refuelling Boom System (ARBS)
  • Cobham 905E under-wing refuelling pods for probe-equipped receiver aircraft.
Cobham 905E under-wing refuelling pods for probe
  • Cobham 805E Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU) for probe-equipped receiver aircraft
Cobham 805E Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU) for probe
  • Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation (UARRSI) for self in-flight refuelling.
Universal Aerial Refueling Receptacle Slipway Installation (UARRSI)

The A330 MRTT has a maximum fuel capacity of 111,000 kg (245,000 lb) without the use of additional fuel tanks, which leaves space for the carriage of 45,000 kg (99,000 lb) of additional cargo.

The A330 MRTT’s wing has common structure with the four-engine A340-200/-300 with reinforced mounting locations and provision for fuel piping for the A340’s outboard engines. The A330 MRTT’s wing therefore requires little modification for use of these hardpoints for the wing refuelling pods.

kc-x-image01Size comparison 

The A330 MRTT cabin can be modified to carry up to 380 passengers in a single class configuration, allowing a complete range of configurations from maximised troop transport to complex customisation suitable for VIP and guest missions. Available configurations include 300 passengers in a single class and 266 passengers in two classes.

A330 MRTT Upper Deck cargo versiona330-mrtt-04-lower-deck-740x555A330 MRTT Lower deck @thinkdefence.co.ukA330 MRTT Upper Deck cargo version showing pallets A330 MRTT Upper Deck cargo version showing pallets @thinkdefence.co.uka330-mrtt-10-upper-deck-740x225A330 MRTT Upper Deck cargo version showing pallets and seating @thinkdefence.co.ukRAAF KC-30The RAAF has gone for a 2 x 4 x 2 seating arrangement in the “tourist” section and 2 x 3 x 2 in the “business” section of the MRTT (Multi Role Tanker Transport). (radschool.org.au)A330 MRTT Upper Deck seating configuration – single class @thinkdefence.co.ukA330 MRTT Upper Deck seatingA330 MRTT Upper Deck seating configuration – two class @thinkdefence.co.uk

The A330 MRTT can also be configured to perform Medical Evacuation (Medevac) missions; up to 130 standard stretchers can be carried. The main deck cargo configuration allows carriage of standard commercial containers and pallets, military, ISO and NATO pallets (including seats) and containers, and military equipment and other large items which are loaded through a cargo door. Like the A330-200, the A330 MRTT includes two lower deck cargo compartments (forward and aft) and a bulk area capability. The cargo hold has been modified to be able to transport up to 8 military pallets in addition to civilian Unit Load Device (ULD).

An optional crew rest compartment (CRC), located in the forward cabin can be installed for a spare crew to increase time available for a mission. The passenger cabin of the A330 MRTT can be provided with a set of removable airstairs to enable embarkation and disembarkation when airbridges or ground support equipment are not available.

Standard commercial A330-200s are delivered from Airbus Final Assembly Line in Toulouse (France) to Airbus Military Conversion Centre in Getafe, Spain for fitting of refuelling systems and military avionics. The tanker was certified by Spanish authorities in October 2010. It was first delivered to Australia on 1 June 2011. Qantas Defence Services converted the remaining four A330-200s at its Brisbane Airport facility on behalf of EADS for the Royal Australian Air Force.

Operational history

The A330 MRTT has been ordered by Australia, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Singapore. Australia was the launch customer for the A330 MRTT.

Australia

Designated as KC-30A, the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) A330 MRTTs are equipped with both an Aerial Refuelling Boom System (ARBS) and two Cobham 905E under-wing refuelling pods.
Refuelling Boom System (ARBS)Cobham 905E under-wing refuelling pods for probe

The aircraft are powered by two General Electric CF6-80E engines.Australia initially arranged to procure four aircraft with an option to obtain a fifth; this option for a fifth aircraft was exercised to allow for two simultaneous deployments of two aircraft, the fifth being for contingency coverage. Australian KC-30A are operated by No. 33 Squadron RAAF based at RAAF Base Amberley. Australia has designated the aircraft KC-30A Multi-Role Tanker Transport. Australia’s aircraft are configured for 270 passengers plus cargo.

In 2005, the RAAF expected that deliveries would begin in late 2008 and be completed in 2010. Deliveries fell two years behind schedule, in part because of delays in the boom’s development. On 30 May 2011, KC-30A A39-003, the third converted A330, arrived at RAAF Base Amberley and was formally handed over on 1 June 2011. The second A330 conversion, A39-002 was ferried to RAAF Amberley on 18 June 2011 and handed over to the RAAF on 22 June 2011. In June 2010, Qantas announced receipt of the fourth aircraft at its Brisbane facilities for an anticipated 10-month conversion. On 3 December 2012, the final fifth KC-30A was delivered to the RAAF.

In July 2013, it was reported there were ongoing delays with preparing the KC-30A for full entry into service due to problems with the refuelling systems, including the hose-and-drogue system passing too much fuel.

In August 2013, the KC-30A made its debut as a VIP transport, ferrying Prime Minister Rudd and an entourage to Al Minhad Air Base, United Arab Emirates. In August 2014, Defence Minister David Johnston announced the intention to purchase two additional KC-30As with one in VIP configuration for transport of the Prime Minister.

On 22 September 2014, the RAAF deployed an Air Task Group to a staging base at Al Minhad Air Base in the United Arab Emirates, as part of a coalition to combat Islamic State forces in Iraq.

The Air Refueller Operator onboard the RAAF KC-30A provides two RAAF F/A @airheadsfly.comA RAAF F/A-18F “caught” alongside the RAAF KC-30 (Image © SGT Mick Davis / 1st JPAU / Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Defence)

See details of F-18 Super Hornet: HERE

The aircraft included F/A-18F Super Hornets, a KC-30A tanker transport and an E-7A Wedgetail airborne early warning and control aircraft. The KC-30 started operations just days after arriving in the UAE by aerial refueling US and other coalition aircraft over Iraq. On 6 October 2014, the RAAF started their first combat missions over Iraq with two Super Hornets supported by the KC-30 tanker.

A Royal Australian Air Force E-7A Wedgetail carries out the first operational air-to-air refuellilng from a RAAF KC-30A operations above Iraq on 23 October 2015 (Image © CPL Ben Dempster / 28SQN AFID – AMB / Commonwealth of Australia, Department of Defence) @airheadsfly.comA Royal Australian Air Force KC-30A (Airbus A330 MRTT) has used its air‑to‑air refuelling boom for the first time on operations while refuelling a RAAF E-7A Wedgetail (Boeing 737) last week during a Coalition mission above Iraq, the Ministry of Defence in Canberra announced on 27 October 2015. @airheadsfly.com@failheap-challenge.com RAAF E-7A Wedgetail (Boeing 737)

See details of RAAF E-7A Wedgetail: HERE

In July 2015, Defence Minister Kevin Andrews announced the order of two additional KC-30s, to be delivered in 2018. The new tankers will be based on A330-200 airliners that were previously operated by Qantas on lease from CIT Aerospace, and will be the first KC-30As to be converted from airframes that have already seen civilian service.

Variants

A330 MRTT
An Airbus A330-200 converted by Airbus Military for air-refuelling duties.
KC-30A
Australian designation for an A330 MRTT with two under-wing refuelling pods and an Aerial Refuelling Boom System.
KC-45A
United States Air Force designation for an A330 MRTT with two under-wing refuelling pods and an Aerial Refuelling Boom System, order cancelled.
Voyager KC2
Royal Air Force designation for an A330 MRTT with two Cobham 905 under-wing pods, primarily used for refuelling fast jets.
Voyager KC3
Royal Air Force designation for an A330 MRTT with two under-wing pods and a “Cobham Fuselage Refuelling Unit (FRU)” for a centreline refuelling capability, primarily used for refuelling large aircraft.
A330 MRTT cockpit

 

Royal Thai Navy to build B5.5bn missile-equipped patrol vessel – Update with systems detailed

According to the Bangkok Post (see below for system details)

29 Feb 2016 at 17:09 559  WRITER: WASSANA NANUAM

The navy will build its second offshore patrol vessel, this one to be armed with guided missiles, at an estimated cost of 5.5 billion baht.

Vice Adm Jumpol Lumpiganon, deputy chief-of-staff and spokesman for the Royal Thai Navy, said on Monday the first OPV the navy built was HTMS Krabi.

The second offshore patrol vessel would be developed from the design of the first OPV, which was based on a design by BAE Systems Ships Co of England, he said.

The navy had signed a contract to buy the vessel’s design and materials from Bangkok Dock Co, a state enterprise under the Defence Ministry. The Mahidol Naval Dockyard of the Naval Dockyard Department would build the vessel and the Naval Ordnance Department will be responsible for its weapons systems.

The navy had developed its vessel building capability from building its own coastal patrol craft to building the first OPV, Vice Adm Jumpol said. HTMS Krabi was officially delivered in 2013.

Of the 5.5-billion-baht budgeted cost of the second OPV, 2.8 billion baht was for the vessel design, materials, tests, training, technology transfer, insurance and transport, and 2.7 billion baht for operating systems, weapons and project management.

The second OPV would cost more than the first, which came in at 2.93 billion baht, because in addition to main and secondary guns, it would also be equipped with a Harpoon anti-ship missile system, Vice Adm Jumpol said.

Read Original Article: HERE

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According to TAF

dti_thales_1

RTN spokesperson give some more detail about the second OPV project.

Aside from the BAE Systems’ enhanced design, the ship has helipad capable to accommodate the 11.5-ton helicopter or S-70B in RTN. RGM-84 Harpoon will be installed on board the ship and most of electronic systems are from Thales.

The project value is 5,482,930,000 Baht in which 2,832,930,000 Baht is the construction cost and another 2,650,000,000 Baht is for the weapon systems procurement. The timeframe will be from 2016-2018.

Source: TAF

????????????????????????????????????HTMS Krabi

Thales reveals configuration of the RTN’s new OPV and proposed Pattani-class upgraded plan.

Royal Thai Navy is on the preparation process of building its new OPV, the second of the Krabi class, and they still choosing Thales Nederland as lead system and combat system integrator. The second ship will have a higher capability. Thales also proposed the upgrade plan for the Pattani-class that, if implemented, will bring the capability to the standard of what it is on Krabi class.

TACTICOS still a combat suite for the yet-to-be name OPV. 4 MOC Mk.3 console station will be installed along with two large collaboration wall displaying the situation picture. The air-surface surveillance radar will be the rotating 2D dual C/X-band TWT Variant radar along with rotating 2D X-band FMCW LPI solid-state Scout surface-helicopter control radar. Mk X(A) TSB2525 and STIR 1.2 EO Mk 2 is the main fire control. R-ESM capability rely on Vigile Mk 2. L3 Wescam MX-10MS optronic surveillance system and Terma SKWS C-Guard, X-Band and S-Band Sperry Marine Vision Master radar, Furuno ARPA radar will also be installed.

The ADS-B and AIS are also believed to be install on board.

Main gun will be Oto Melara 76/62 compact stealth shield and two MSI-DSL/ATK 30 mm DS30MR Mk.44. There are also an preparation for the anti-ship missile to be installed. RTN is looking at the RGM-84D Harpoon, but if there is any export ban RTN will shift to C-802A instead. But ThaiArmedForce.com believe that the Harpoon deal, if it is exist, will go through consider United States just approve the additional sale of RIM-162B ESSM to the RTN. The two Terma DL-12T will make this ship the first RTN ship that capable of avoiding the anti-ship attack.

Thales also providing the FICS integrated communication system and FOCON IP phone. Network centric mission will go through Thales Link Y Mk.2 that enable the ship to share information with allied force. Thales also integrating the Link RTN developed by Avia Satcom/Rohde & Schwarz. SATCOM will be using Cobham Sailor and underwater communication will be using Ocean Technology Systems Aquacom to communicate with diver. The LRAD also be installed for law enforcement mission.

Imtech Marine UniMACS 3000 series integrated bridge system will handle all bridge work. TACAN will be also installed. ThaiArmedForce.com’s opinion is this the indication that the new OPV will have an on-board 7 tons helicopter.

Another plan that Thales proposed to RTN is the Pattani-class OPV upgrade plan. Over specification will be On 17 September, Royal Thai Navy signed the contract with Bangkok Dock and Italthai Marine for drawing, materials, and associated equipment and services to be used in the construction of its new offshore patrol vessel (OPV)

Source: TAF

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Sensors

2D dual C/X-band TWT Variant radar

2D dual C/X-band TWT Variant radar

The 3-in-one Variant radar, offers surveillance and target indication. Its principal role is as an automatic, fast reaction time radar sensor, supplying targeting data to weapon systems. Automatic target detection and tracking in 2D plus radial speed is supplied for both air and surface targets simultaneously. For surface targets, it offers 3 gunfire channels.

Variant includes a dual-band radar, utilising both the I- and G-bands (X&C-band). Fully coherent, Variant provides pulse-doppler operation for optimal clutter suppression and air target detection without disturbance by multi-path (or lobbing) effects thanks to the dual-frequency. Outstanding ECM facilities are provided by the ability to operate over two frequency bands, an octave apart, and the third part of Variant, an integral Low Probability of Intercept (LPI) radar. This LPI radar (see also entry: Scout) can be used alone, thus providing Variant the unusual ability to operate in a mode that is almost undetectable to external ESM.

Variant’s low power consumption, lightweight construction and compact design, make the system well suited for use on fast patrol boats and OPVs. For larger ships that need helicopter/UAV guidance, it’s the radar of choice, due to it’s extreme short minimum range. @thales7seas.com

Performance Data

Number of tracks
Air : 200
Surface : 200
FC Surface : 3

Instrumented ranges
Air targets : 120 km
Surface targets : 70 km

2D X-band FMCW LPI solid-state Scout surface-helicopter control radar

SCOUT Mk2 Thales Naval Nederland, a Low Probability of Intercept (LPI) short-to-medium range surface surveillance and tactical navigation radar. Scout can be operated as a stand-alone mobile system for flexible responsiveness. Additionally, the system can be operated remotely (radio or line connection). It is an all-weather fully solid-state system of high reliability operating in X-band radar featuring Frequency Modulation Continuous Wave (FMCW) and therefore has an extremely low output power which makes the system ideal for cover operations in hostile environments where radar silence is required and thus its transmissions cannot be detected by ESM systems or radar warning receivers. SCOUT Mk2 outstandingly detects targets in adverse sea clutter conditions, thanks to its very small range cell size. The system is also very suitable for coastal surveillance. The range of the radar exceeds the 44km. @navalanalyses.blogspot.com

STIR 1.2 EO Mk 2 is the main fire control. R-ESM capability rely on Vigile Mk 2. L3 Wescam MX-10MS optronic surveillance system and Terma SKWS C-Guard (Example May not be exact model)

STING-EO Mk2, Thales’s lightweight dual band (I and K) weapon control system, supports gun fire control, performs kill assessment and makes a valuable contribution to classification and identification of threats. In addition, the system can be used as a surveillance sensor, even under radar silence conditions.

The three data sources (I, K, EO) provide high redundancy, performance and ECCM resistance. STING EO Mk2 incorporates the latest solid-state I-band and K-band radars transmitters (low life cycle cost and high operational availability) and a new generation of electro-optical components (especially a third generation focal plane array infrared camera).

For operation in the littoral environment, STING EO Mk2 offers a list of benefits, such as: superior stealth target detection in strong (land) clutter, higher resistance against more stressing jamming scenarios and an extended EO capability for target identification and observation. @THALES

Instrumented range
– I-band : 120 km
– K-band : 36 km

X-Band and S-Band Sperry Marine Vision Master radar

Scanner Features 

Scanner features include advanced clutter suppression, target acquisition, AIS targets, interswitching, compatibility, dual-channel options and personalisation.

Advanced Clutter Suppression

In the presence of sea or rain clutter, our VisionMaster FT Radar scanner features advanced clutter suppression technology that automatically detects small, weak targets without the need for adjusting controls.

Target Acquisition

Rather than manually acquiring targets, the ARPA scanners automatically and safely acquire and track targets at relative speeds up to 150 knots.

AIS Targets

The VisionMaster FT Radar can display AIS targets and supports processing and display of AIS ATONS, Search & Rescue Craft, AIS SARTS, AIS Base Stations, safety messaging and AIS MKD.

Interswitching

An optional digital Interswitch allows the operator to display radar video from any scanner at any desired display. For improved user operation and flexibility, interswitching gives up to six transceivers and up to six displays

Compatibility

To reduce cost and time required for retrofit, our VisionMaster FT Radars are compatible with the BridgeMaster-E product line by partial hardware and software replacement.

Personalisation

Settings can be customized for different watch officers, with voyage plans and operating systems that can be saved and moved to different vessels, offering flexibility, control and safety. 

@sperrymarine.com

limnos tacticosTACTICOS still a combat suite for the yet-to-be name OPV. 4 MOC Mk.3 console station

Network centric

A01157625130914110001RTN developed by Avia Satcom/Rohde & Schwarz

Network centric mission will go through Thales Link Y Mk.2 that enable the ship to share information with allied force. Thales also integrating the Link RTN developed by Avia Satcom/Rohde & Schwarz.

Command and Control

Example of Imtech Marine integrated bridge system

Imtech Marine UniMACS 3000 series integrated bridge system will handle all bridge work. TACAN will be also installed.

Weapons

Oto Melara 76/62 compact stealth shield

Oto Melara 76/62 compact stealth shield . The gun’s high rate of fire and availability of specialised ammunition make it well-suited to varied roles such as short-range anti-missile point defence, anti-aircraft, anti-surface, and ground support. Specialised ammunition includes armour piercing, incendiary, directed fragmentation effects, and a guided round marketed as capable of destroying manoeuvring anti-ship missiles. 

Two MSI-DSL/ATK 30 mm DS30MR Mk.44.
2 x 4 Harpoon launchersRGM-84D Harpoon

The Harpoon is an all weather, subsonic, over the horizon, anti-ship missile which can be launch from surface ships, submarines and aircraft. Its guidance system consists of a 3-axis integrated digital computer/ radar altimeter for midcourse guidance, and an active radar seeker for the terminal phase of the flight.

The Harpoon flies at subsonic speeds, with a sea-skimming flight trajectory for improved survivability through reduced probability of detection by enemy defenses. It was designed to strike enemy ships in an open ocean environment.

The ship launched RGM-84 Harpoon was introduced in 1977, as well as the encapsulated submarine launched UGM-84.

Dimensions
Diameter: 340 millimeter
Length: 4.63 meter (15.2 foot)
Wingspan: 910 millimeter
Performance
Max Range: 124 kilometer (67 nautical mile)

Speed
Top Speed: 237 mps (853 kph)
Weight
Thrust: 660 pound
Warhead: 224 kilogram (494 pound)
Weight: 691 kilogram

@deagel.com

Protection and Decoy

c-guard-tubes_464Terma DL-12T

Two Terma DL-12T. Terma’s C-Guard Soft-Kill Weapon System is a decoy system for naval platforms made to defeat stream attack with multiple missiles and torpedoes from multiple directions. The system will effectively counter advanced threats like small range gate Radio Frequency (RF) missiles, imaging Infra Red (IR) seekers missiles, and advanced next generation torpedoes. These threats require fast response and utilization of advanced tactics supporting the latest in decoy technologies available. 

Helicopter

Can accommodate up to 11.5 tons

S-70BH145M for Royal Thai Navy @Asian Defence News

New Airbus H145M for Royal Thai Navy to be received soon

See related post:-

BAE to support construction of second Thai patrol vessel

Royal Thai Navy’s DW-3000F Frigate – Armament

China’s Y-20 to be put into military use in 2016

According to the People’s Daily Online

By Yuan Can (People’s Daily Online)    16:56, February 29, 2016

China’s own domestically built military cargo jet, Y-20, will likely be put into service in the army this year, a military expert said in an interview with People’s Daily Online.

According to Xu Yongling, a military expert, the test flight period for large aircraft is generally between three and five years. Since there have been no bottlenecks during development or manufacturing, the Y-20 will be put into use this year.

The first flight of the Y-20 took place in 2013, making China the fourth country in the world, following the U.S., Russia and Ukraine, to develop a 200-ton military cargo jet.

“This is not only progress for China’s national defense industry, but also a milestone of industrial and military modernization,” Xu said.

The official code name of the aircraft is Kunpeng, after the mythical bird of ancient China that can fly for thousands of kilometers. However, within the Chinese aviation industry, the aircraft is more commonly known by its nickname, Chubby Girl, named by military fans for its relatively wide fuselage.

Military expert Chen Hong said in an interview with People’s Daily Online that the carrying capacity of the Y-20, around 60 tons, is higher than that of Russia’s Ilyushin Il-76, a multi-purpose four-engine turbofan strategic airlifter. The Y-20’s engine, aerodynamic arrangement and combat performance are all better than those of the Russian aircraft.

The cargo jet can be used to refit significant special operations platforms, as it has a long flying period and flying distance. The Y-20 is also a good choice for maritime detection and early warning, according to Chen.

As for future military developments, airborne transportation depends not only on the Y-20, but also on other military cargo jets, which China may develop in the next five to ten years, according to Xu.

@en.people.cn

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See details of Y-20: HERE

Israel reconsidering 2008 purchase of U.S. jets – the much-touted JSF has some inherent flaws

According to ARUTZ SHEVA

Israel reconsidering 2008 purchase of U.S. jets

By Hillel Fendel First Publish: 2/29/2016, 3:43 AM

Cabinet mulls cancelling acquisition of flawed fighter-jet rejected by most NATO air forces.

A welcome decision made back in 2008 to purchase U.S.-made Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) jets no longer appears very attractive in 2016 – and Israel is considering backtracking on it.

So say Israeli government sources quoted by Middle East Newsline (MENL).

For one thing, the much-touted JSF has some inherent flaws, such as inadequate range, weapons payload and stealth capability. In addition, the Americans refuse to share the JSF source code with Israel. Israel would not be able to modify the platform to fit its needs, and would have to send damaged engines to Turkey or the U.S. for repairs.

According to the sources, some Israeli Cabinet members say the state-of-the-art version of the F-35 jet is outright “flawed.” Israel could find itself “increasingly dependent” on a fighter-jet that has been rejected by most NATO air forces, the sources say.

Until the JSF reaches its full potential, a highly-placed source said, “we will have dozens of very expensive aircraft with limited capabilities.”

Back in September 2008, the U.S. Defense Department approved the sale of 25 F-35 stealth-enabled Joint Strike Fighters to Israel’s air force. The $15.2 billion deal included an option to buy 50 additional bombers in ensuing years.

Israel was particularly interested in the plane because of its short takeoff and vertical landing capabilities. It was assumed that in war-time, Israeli bases and runways were liable to be heavily targeted by enemy missiles, rendering them all but unusable. The F-35B, with its ability to hover, land vertically, and take off vertically with a light load, would be invaluable under such circumstances. In addition, it needs only a few hundred feet of runway to take off when fully-loaded.

Even back then, however, manufacturer Lockheed-Martin faced claims that the jet performed poorly in tests and combat simulations. The company insisted that the JSF was the most advanced fighter of its class available.

Israel is currently expecting 33 F-35A jets, to arrive in two batches. The first aircraft are expected to arrive by 2017. Over 20 of them were supposed to have arrived last year, but the order was reduced to 14 by a government panel headed by Energy Minister Yuval Shteinitz. Seventeen F-35’s are still on order for 2017, and the Israel Air Force continues to push for even more to arrive by 2020.

The Netanyahu government has urged Washington to sell Israel the advanced F-15 fighter-jet that has been approved for Saudi Arabia. But the Obama Administration has refused, presenting the JSF as the only platform available for Israeli purchase with the more than $3 billion a year it receives in American aid.

A second source quoted by MENL says the “overall feeling [among Cabinet members] is that Israel can’t continue on this path and needs proven combat platforms.” The sources added that Israel would end paying a “strategic price” for “procuring, operating, and training for 50 inadequate aircraft.”

@israelnationalnews.com

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See details of F35: HERE

F-35AF-35B

Canadian Aggressor Fleet Deal Could Open Doors Overseas

According to Defense News

By David Pugliese 5 p.m. EST February 27, 2016

VICTORIA, British Columbia — Firms are battling to win a billion dollar contract to provide Canada’s military with an aggressor aircraft training fleet, a deal that could pave the way for further expansion of such services on the international market.

Winning the contract is particularly critical for the Canadian-based Discovery Air Defence, which already provides such services to Germany and Canada. But the company is facing competition from the US-based Draken International, which has teamed with CAE of Canada to offer a fleet of aircraft for Canadian fighter jets to train against.

Called the Contracted Airborne Training Services (CATS), the service will run over an initial 10-year period, followed by an optional five years. The CATS contract could be worth up to CAN $1.5 billion (US $1 billion) over that period of time.

CATS will provide aircraft to simulate hostile threats for ground and naval forces as well as fighter pilots. The project also provides aircraft to train forward air controllers as well as planes to tow targets and carry electronic warfare systems for various training scenarios.

Pierre-Alain Bujold, spokesman for Public Services and Procurement Canada, the federal department that coordinates military equipment purchases, said the bids went in Feb. 16.

“The evaluation, which includes aircraft inspection, is expected to take up to five months,” he said. “The contract is expected to be awarded by the end of 2016.”

The winning bidder is required not only to provide aircraft and pilots but also maintenance crews and engineering support.

Mike Greenley, vice president and general manager, CAE Canada, said the firm views the Canadian contract as its entry into exporting such services internationally.

“This collaboration with Draken is the spark of a global relationship,” he explained. “We intend to deliver the Canadian program and then bid and deliver other programs internationally.”

He noted that Draken International of Lakeland, Florida, operates the largest fleet of privately owned fighter aircraft in the world.

“With the size of Draken’s aggressor aircraft [fleet] we will make a great team for international pursuits,” he added.

The CAE and Draken team have proposed a fleet of Douglas A-4 Skyhawk fighter aircraft to support the CATS program.

Garry Venman, vice president of business development and government relations at Discovery Air Defence, said the firm has now provided more than 55,000 hours of airborne training services for the Canadian Forces, the German armed forces and other air forces.

He said the company has its eye on a potential $3 billion global market for airborne training services, which includes potential contracts in the US. The company has a US-based subsidiary and is also looking at markets from Australia to the Middle East. It has provided such services to Canada since 2005 and started delivering similar services to the German military in 2015.

“The Germans are quite happy with the service,” Venman said. “We think we can easily expand to offer services to additional countries in NATO. We’re seeing positive concrete evidence that air forces are starting to seriously consider the role contracted adversary plays in their future training environments.”

Venman said that customers are requiring more capable adversaries as they transition to next-generation fighters.

Discovery Air Defence is acquiring F-16s for its fleet although the firm has declined to provide many details. But Venman noted that, “The real driver will be the sensor technology, not necessarily the aircraft performance.

“Our strategy is to develop our in-house engineering capabilities to have solutions to provide technology insertions into these platforms which make them a representative training adversary,” he added.

Greenley said CAE and Draken are also proposing to conduct research and development for a next-generation aggressor threat capability. That next generation capability would be able to use actual aircraft, as well as simulated planes, to create a realistic threat picture.

For example, although an air force pilot might be facing two aggressor aircraft in a live scenario, the pilot’s display would show four enemy planes, Greenley explained. Two of them would be simulated.

“So the pilot is engaging in an even richer scenario than what is actually in the air,” Greenley said. “In the future that is how we believe the market will go.”

@defensenews.com

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Draken wibsite: drakenintl.com

@aviationphoto.org@f-16.net

 

Russia’s pledges cover cooperation with Thailand to set up a factory to manufacture military equipment as well as invest in railways in Thailand

According to The Bangkok Post

Partial quote:-

“Russia’s pledges cover cooperation with Thailand to set up a factory to manufacture military equipment as well as invest in railways in Thailand.

Analysts believe with Russia’s support, Thailand stands to gain more diplomatic leverage with the West led by the United States, which is looking to expand its influence in Southeast Asia. Thailand hopes to bring the regional geopolitical power play among major nations into balance.

“The visit to Russia clearly reflects the interest of the military government in being perceived to be redirecting Thailand’s foreign policy away from the West towards China and Russia, both of which have an increasingly troubled relationship with the United States,” said Anthony Davis, Bangkok-based security analyst for security consulting firm IHS-Jane’s.”

Read full article: HERE

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See related Post: –

No talks on buying arms during Russia trip: Prawit

U.S. restrictions on arms sales mean Thai military needs to shop elsewhere

Thailand Could Buy More Russian Mi-17V5 Helicopters

Thailand, Russia exploring ‘arms for food’ agreement

Thai defense minister to inspect T-90 tanks – report

Royal Thai Army to procure new MBT with a budget of THB8.9 billion

T-90A