April 2021 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


US Marine Corps 60th KC-130J comes with capability upgrade

The U.S. Marine Corps received its 60th KC-130J aircraft in March; the aircraft includes improved navigational performance, a modernized cockpit, and other key upgrades.

Finland: final quotations for HX Fighter programme received

The Finnish Defence Forces Logistics Command has received the final quotations for the HX Programme from five fighter manufacturers. Next, the quotations will be evaluated in line with the invitation for tenders and the programme’s decision model to make a procurement proposal. After the evaluation of quotations is completed in autumn 2021, the Finnish Government will decide on the procurement, on proposal by the Ministry of Defence, at the end of 2021.

Curtiss-Wright to upgrade US T-6 Texan II trainer aircraft flight recorder system

Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a proven leading supplier of rugged avionics solutions, today announced that it was selected by Scientific Research Corporation (SRC) to provide a version of its industry-leading Fortress flight recorder system to upgrade the T-6 Texan II trainer aircraft used by the U.S. Air Force and Navy.

Cooperation reached to power Europe Next-Generation Fighter

MTU Aero Engines, Safran Aircraft Engines, and ITP Aero came to an overall agreement on the cooperation to provide a jointly developed, produced and supported engine to power the Next-Generation Fighter (NGF), which is a core element of FCAS (Future Combat Air System).

Saab delivers its best and final offer for Finland

Saab has, with strong support from the Swedish Government, submitted its Best and Final Offer (BAFO) to the Finnish defence procurement agency for the Finnish HX fighter procurement. The proposal comprises 64 Gripen E fighter aircraft and an extensive weapons package, as well as two GlobalEye Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft. This constitutes the response to the customer’s January 2021 request for a BAFO. Finland is replacing the capability provided by its current fleet of F/A-18 C/D Hornet aircraft.

Indian Air Force to lease A330 MRTT tankers from France

According to the Hindustan Times, the Indian Air Force (IAF) is planning to lease a A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT ) from France. A first one for training purposes then five more in a second time to serve as tankers for IAF's fighters.

F-35 best and final offer submitted to Finnish government

The U.S. government and Lockheed Martin submitted an F-35 best and final offer (BAFO) on April 29, 2021, to the Finnish government in support of its competition to replace its current fighter fleet.

US approves foreign military sale of CH47F Chinook helicopters to Australia

The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Australia of CH-47F Chinook helicopters and related equipment for an estimated cost of $259 million.  The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on April 29.

EuroDASS consortium signs contract to equip new German Typhoons with protective electronic warfare system

Leonardo, on behalf of the EuroDASS Consortium, has signed a contract to supply the Praetorian Defensive Aids Sub-System (DASS) for the new Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft being supplied under the German Quadriga programme. This will see 38 of the latest standard Eurofighter Typhoon aircraft delivered to the German Luftwaffe to replace their Tranche 1 Typhoon aircraft.

European OCCAR awards contract to MBDA for French future air-to-ground tactical missile programme

The European OCCAR (Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation) as Contracting Authority,  representing the government of France, has agreed a contract with MBDA FR for the development, production and initial in-service support phases of the MAST-F Programme. 

First combat tactical ferry mission for F-15E fighter jets

Six F-15E Strike Eagles landed at Al Dhafra Air Base, United Arab Emirates, with a modified munitions configuration on Apr. 25, 2021, as part of an Agile Combat Employment operation in the U.S. Central Command theater.

Eurofighter submits best and final offer for Finland next fighter jet

Last year Finland’s HX fighter programme to replace the Finnish Air Force’s F/A-18 C/D Hornet has entered its evaluation phase with the country set to evaluate entrants from Eurofighter, Boeing, Dassault, Lockheed Martin and Saab ahead of awarding a contract in late 2021. Eurofighter has submitted its best and final offer (BAFO) to Finland promising an enduring European partnership, highly-skilled jobs and proven capability which will remain the backbone of air power for decades to come. 

Afghanistan: A29 Super Tucano carries laser guided bomb for precision strikes

Since March 22, 2018, the Afghan Air Force has both introduced and increased the use of precision guided munitions in southern Afghanistan.

Argentine Air Force incorporates a Boeing 737-700 aircraft

After several years of  several years of postponement, the Argentine Air Force incorporated a Boeing 737-700 during a ceremony held by Minister of Defense Agustín Rossi.

Air Force of Zimbabwe takes delivery of H215 transport helicopter

On April 18, The Air Force of Zimbabwe (AFZ) has taken delivery of an Airbus H215 helicopter. According to some undisclosed sources, the helicopter is intended to serve as VIP transport helicopter and  replace the aged Cougar helicopter used to fly the President Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Germany to decommission Transall C-160 transport aircraft this year

The Transall C-160 will be retired from the Bundeswehr by the end of this year and the tasks will be taken over by the A400M from Lufttransportgeschwader 62 in Wunstorf.

AeroVironment awarded $26 Million Switchblade 600 tactical missile systems contract by US Special Operation Command

AeroVironment, Inc. , a global leader in unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), announced on April 27 that it was awarded a cost-plus-fixed-fee contract on March 31, 2021 by the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) for $26,120,810 with $7,159,036 funded upon receipt. The contract includes delivery and integration of Switchblade 600 tactical missile systems into specialized maritime platforms, scheduled to be completed by January 2023.

Airbus to test helicopter autonomous features through Project Vertex

Airbus is introducing autonomous features to its helicopter Flightlab through a project code-named Vertex. These technologies aim to simplify mission preparation and management, reduce helicopter pilot workload, and further increase safety.

HMLA-267 demonstrates offensive air support during distributed maritime operations

As hostile forces seized nearby islands, isolating western portions of the III Marine Expeditionary Force Area of Responsibility, they cut off vital sea lines of communication to the east. In response, during the hours of darkness, “STINGER 45” and “STINGER 46” departed a small island airfield and struck enemy outposts on northern and southern islands to reduce enemy command and control capability as well as eliminate their will to fight. Simultaneously, operations dispatched three Stinger flights to engage multiple ground vehicles, fast attack crafts, command and control nodes and enemy personnel.

Maiden trial of Python-5 air-to-air missile fired by Tejas light combat aircraft

Tejas, India's indigenous Light Combat Aircraft, added the 5th generation Python-5 Air-to-Air Missile (AAM) in its air-to-air weapons capability on April 27, 2021. Trials were also aimed to validate enhanced capability of already integrated Derby Beyond Visual Range (BVR) AAM on Tejas. The test firing at Goa completed a series of missile trials to validate its performance under extremely challenging scenarios. 

Page 1 of 7