March 2019 news

Air Forces - Aerospace and Aviation Defense Industry

UK: Wedgetail to be Royal Air Force's new early warning radar aircraft

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has signed a $1.98Bn (£1.51Bn) deal to purchase five E-7 Wedgetail aircraft.  The E-7 fleet will replace the current E-3D Sentry aircraft and ensure the continued delivery of the UK’s Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) capability.

Russia’s modernized Mi-28NM attack helicopter to get new guided missile

Russia’s modernized Mi-28NM attack helicopter will be fitted with a new guided missile with a range of more than 25 kilometers, an aircraft industry source told TASS on Wednesday.

First flight for prototype of SB-1 Defiant modern coaxial helicopter

The Sikorsky-Boeing SB1 Defiant helicopter achieved first flight today at Sikorsky's West Palm Beach, Florida site. This revolutionary aircraft, developed by Sikorsky, a Lockheed Martin Company, and Boeing, will help inform the next generation of military helicopters as part of the U.S. Army's Future Vertical Lift program.

Boeing gets USD 4 bn contract with US Navy for 78 Super Hornets F / A-18E / F Block III

The U.S. Navy has awarded Boeing a contract for the procurement of 78 F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet aircraft between fiscal years 2019-2021, possibly six more.

Lockheed Martin and Pratt & Whitney confirm pursuit forward with Belgian industry on ESI projects featuring F-35

During a ceremonial signing event on March 21, Lockheed Martin and Pratt & Whitney, together with about twenty industry members from the three Belgian regions, have formally confirmed to move forward with industrial projects. Since the Belgian government’s selection of the F-35, Lockheed Martin and F135 engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney have been engaged in an open dialogue with Belgian industry and authorities to create successful projects and maximize the long-term opportunities identified in the Essential Security Interests (ESI) framework defined by the Belgian government. This gathering marks an important step towards achieving this goal.

UK Government paves the way for the Tempest fighter jet programme

Over 300 industry and Government attendees from across the UK defense supply chain have met for the first opportunity for suppliers to engage with the Government and Team Tempest partners over the future of Combat Air System development in the UK.

Russia: Northeastern Forces operate Orlan-10 drones

The Northeastern Forces of Russia`s Eastern Military District (Vostochniy Voenniy Okrug, VVO) have been refitted with the Orlan-10 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), according to the Ministry of Defense`s (MoD`s) official newspaper Red Star (Krasnaya Zvezda).

Rolls-Royce tests hybrid aero propulsion system

Rolls-Royce successfully tested the hybrid version of the M250 gas turbine in a ground demonstration setting in three operating modes: Series Hybrid, Parallel Hybrid and Turbo-Electric. The tests are part of a hybrid aerospace turbine engine development and integration programme which expects to begin experimental flights on an aircraft in 2021.

DARPA awards BAE Systems contract to further develop autonomous software for air mission planning

The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has awarded BAE Systems a Phase 3 contract worth $3.1 million to continue developing autonomy software to improve the resiliency of air mission planning for the military. The program, called Resilient Synchronized Planning and Assessment for the Contested Environment (RSPACE), seeks to develop human-centered software decision aids that can assist air operators to better control daily operations in a complex battlespace.

MBDA to develop the next generation of the MICA air-to-air missile and more

MBDA has received significant domestic orders in 2018, including a contract from the French DGA to develop the next generation of the MICA air-to-air missile.

US Air Force to get 80 F-15EXs in the next 5 years

The US Air Force plans to spend $7.86 billion over the next five years buying 80 F-15EXs, new Eagles to replace aging F-15Cs.

European Defence Fund on track with €525 million for Eurodrone and other joint research and industrial projects

The Commission has today adopted work programmes to co-finance joint defence industrial projects in 2019-2020 worth up to €500 million. A further €25 million have been earmarked to support collaborative defence research projects in 2019, with calls for proposals.

Thermobaric warhead for CIRIT 2.75 in laser guided rocket by Roketsan

With the longest range in its class, Roketsan’s CIRIT 2.75 in laser guided rocket continues to expand its capabilities by adding a thermobaric warhead to its payload options, increasing the number of alternative warheads offered to three. Previously, the company offered two options including a multi-purpose warhead with anti-armour, anti-personnel and incendiary functions and a high explosive warhead.

Russia: TsAGI completed the design of a large-scale model of Il-276 airlifter

The Zhukovsky Central Aerohydrodynamic Institute (TsAGI) completed the design of a large-scale model of Il-276 airlifter. It will be used to test various options of the landing-takeoff wing gear and wing and fin controls, TsAGI said.

BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and MBDA enhancing the UK F-35

A team of BAE Systems, Lockheed Martin and MBDA engineers are enhancing the capability of the UK’s fleet of F-35 Lightning aircraft by commencing work on the integration of next generation weapons.

Raytheon and Hensoldt to provide integrated air surveillance radars to Dutch and German customers

Raytheon Company and German sensor specialist Hensoldt, both leading air traffic radar providers, will provide two European customers integrated air surveillance radars that combine Hensoldt's next-generation primary airport surveillance radar and Raytheon's Mode S monopulse secondary surveillance radar.

Russian drone-mounted rifle to counter UAS

On March 12, Russia’s Federal Service for Intellectual Property posted the registration of a novel counter-drone drone, an unmanned aerial interceptor vehicle built around a rifle.

USA and India collaborating on air-launched drone

The USA and India are working on development of a small, air-launched unmanned system that could be launched from cargo aircraft, according to Pentagon acquisition head Ellen Lord. Lord indicates the systems could likely launch from aircraft operated by both nations, specifically the C-130J and C-17.

Australia: RAAF to get 4 modified Gulfstream G550s for electronic warfare support

Minister for Defence, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP and Minister for Defence Industry, Senator the Hon Linda Reynolds CSC, announced the $2.46 billion acquisition of four modified Gulfstream G550 aircraft – to be designated the MC-55A “Peregrine” - for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

Northrop Grumman awarded $322.5 million for Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile

Northrop Grumman Corporation has received a $322.5 million contract from the U.S. Navy for the Advanced Anti-Radiation Guided Missile-Extended Range (AARGM-ER) Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) program.

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