Daily Archives: February 2, 2017

Czech Republic buys 20 Pandur II 8×8 armoured vehicle

Czech Republic orders more Pandur II armoured vehicles

Jiri Kominek, Prague – IHS Jane’s Defence Weekly

01 February 2017

The Czech Ministry of Defence (MoD) on 30 January awarded a CZK2.07 billion (USD82.0 million) contract to Tatra Defence Vehicle for the procurement of 20 specialised versions of the Steyr Pandur II 8×8 armoured vehicle for the Army of the Czech Republic (ACR).

Tatra Defence Vehicle obtained exclusive assembly and marketing rights for the Pandur from Steyr parent company General Dynamics European Land Systems in 2015.

Tatra Defence Vehicle will deliver six Pandur vehicles configured as command-and-control platforms and another 14 vehicles configured as communications platforms to the ACR, which already operates a fleet of 107 Pandur vehicles in various configurations.

The Czech government approved the procurement of the 20 specialised vehicle platforms in 2015; however, MoD procurement schedules for other defence systems did not provide room for the Pandurs in the budget until 2017.

The 20 platforms are expected to cost an additional CZK800 million from the original price of CZK1.27 billion since the ACR updated its requirements with additional ballistic protection and other more modern onboard technical and IT systems.

“The [increased procurement] price was reviewed by two independent court-appointed experts who ruled that the current price reflects the technological upgrades incorporated into the new vehicles,” deputy defence minister Daniel Kostoval told the media on 30 January.

Original post janes.com

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Pandur APC of the Czech Armed Forces: Details

UH-60V Prototype Black Hawk completes First Flight

US Army UH-60V Prototype Black Hawk Achieves First Flight

1 Feb, 17, Source: US Army

The Program Executive Office Aviation’s Utility Helicopter Project Office today successfully completed the initial test flight of its Engineering Development Model UH-60V Black Hawk helicopter.

The test flight lasted a little more than an hour and included a variety of exercises including take off, hover, track and balance and a brief local area flight before returning to the airfield.

The completion of the flight on this date set more than two years ago was a collaborative effort among several organizations within the military and industry including the U.S. Army’s Aviation and Missile Research and Development Center (AMRDEC), Research, Develop and Engineering Command (RDECOM), Northrop Grumman, and Redstone Defense Systems.

The successful flight of the UH-60V working prototype represents a significant milestone in the UH-60V program and moves one step closer to getting an enhanced, modern air capability to the operational force.

Over the next few weeks, the aircraft will go through final maintenance actions and acceptance test procedures before being handed over to the Aviation Flight Test Directorate in mid- February. Once handed over to AFTD, it will undergo further system level developmental testing to ensure that the aircraft and software performs in accordance with user requirements.

AMRDEC’s Prototype Integration Facility is being used to design and develop three Engineering Development Models and a corresponding technical data package. The kits will be furnished to the Corpus Christi Army Depot to produce two additional EDM aircraft in preparation for Low Rate Initial Production. These additional EDMs will supplement EDMs 1-3 for Initial Operational Test and Evaluation in 2019. The Army Acquisition Objective for the program is 760 aircraft, which are planned to be manufactured at CCAD.

The UH-60V program will upgrade the UH-60L aircraft with a digital cockpit. The open architecture-based cockpit design replaces analog gauges with digital multifunctional displays and enhances situational awareness for aviation warfighters. The UH-60V, which features one of the Army’s most advanced avionics solutions, has a pilot-vehicle interface that is nearly identical to the UH 60M.

Original post helihub.com

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The UH-60V program will upgrade the UH-60L aircraft with a digital cockpit. The open architecture-based cockpit design replaces analog gauges with digital multifunctional displays and enhances situational awareness for aviation warfighters. The UH-60V, which features one of the Army’s most advanced avionics solutions, has a pilot-vehicle interface that is nearly identical to the UH 60M.

UH-60V Black Hawk Integrated Mission Equipment Package

Northrop Grumman is the digital cockpit supplier and integrator for the U.S. Army’s UH-60V program, which replaces analog gauges in UH-60L helicopters with electronic instrument displays. The upgraded helicopter will replicate the UH-60M pilot-vehicle interface and provide interoperability. Our solution extends the life and mission capabilities of the UH-60 platform.

Additional benefits of Northrop Grumman’s scalable, fully integrated mission equipment package include enhanced pilot situational awareness and mission safety, decreased workload and life cycle cost, and a common training environment.

Our approach for the design and implementation of the UH-60V integrated mission equipment package is based on our experience with similar upgrades for the U.S. Marine Corps AH-1Z and UH-1Y helicopters and U.S. Navy E-2D Advanced Hawkeye programs. Source northropgrumman.com

UH-60M: Details

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Trump likely to approve F-16V fighter jet sales to Bahrain that were blocked by the Obama administration

Corker: Bahrain Jet Sales Likely Advance Under Trump, No Strings Attached

January 31, 2017

WASHINGTON — The chairman of the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee said Monday he expects the Trump White House to approve F-16 fighter jet sales to Bahrain that were blocked by the Obama administration over human rights concerns.

The Obama administration reportedly told lawmakers it would not complete the sale until the Gulf kingdom, which hosts the US Navy’s 5th Fleet, reverses moves to suppress its country’s nonviolent opposition. Lockheed Martin has said the sale, reportedly for 19 F-16s worth $2.8 billion, is vital to the survival of its production line.

“I’m hoping the Bahrain deal is going to roll out without the restrictions,” Committee Chairman Bob Corker, R-Tenn., said. “I think it could happen soon.”

The Obama administration advanced some $32 billion in fighter jet sales to the region late last year after a 10-year, $38 billion aid package to Israel was signed. The long-delayed jet sales included as many as 72 F-15 Strike Eagles to Qatar and 32 F/A-18E/F Super Hornets to Kuwait.

But in late September, the Obama administration reportedly told Congress it would not give final approval on the Bahrain deal until progress was made on human rights. The small Arab monarchy has been cracking down on its opposition since the Arab Spring uprising of 2011.

At the time, Corker called the caveats “rather vague” and said the details were to be fleshed out between the Bahrain goverment and then-US Ambassador William V. Roebuck. On Monday, Corker said the stipulations had no place in the arms deal and suggested lawmakers had rejected them.

“I don’t think those are the kinds of things that belong in an arms sales agreement, there are other ways of dealing with it,” Corker said. “I think it was going to, had we accepted it that way, set a very bad precedent.”

While the Obama administration has made good use of foreign military sales, setting records for foreign weapons sales in 2015 and coming close in 2016, Trump’s approach — particularly before his Cabinet is in place — is as yet unclear.

Corker, at one time considered for Trump’s secretary of state, said he did not have an indication of the new administration’s approach to foreign military sales other than a sense the Bahrain sale would proceed without caveats.

Its unclear whether the Bahrain sale would, if it came to Congress for approval, see opposition. In June, a bipartisan group of senators led by Senate Foreign Relations Committee member Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., called on the Obama administration to press Bahrain to protect the rights of its citizens.

Murphy said Monday he had no immediate reaction, but noted: “I’ve raised a lot of concerns about [protecting] political dissent in Bahrain.”

Original post defensenews.com

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Bahrain’s Lockheed F-16 purchase said to come with US strings

F-16C/D: Details

F-16V Fighter– Upgrade: Details

Myanmar in negotiations to manufacture JF-17 fighter

Myanmar in advanced negotiations to licence-build JF-17 fighter