MARCH 2021 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


GA-ASI wins UK MQ-9 drone contract

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc., Poway, California, has been awarded a $12,954,626 firm-fixed-price contract for the United Kingdom MQ-9 Second Operating Location Alternate Reaper (SOLAR).

Elistair, tethered drone company, announces a €5M Series B round to accelerate its International expansion

Elistair, a market leader in tethered drones, has raised €5M from Omnes and Starquest Capital, its historic investor. This Series B round follows an initial €2M funding round in 2018. Since its creation in 2014, Elistair’s solutions have already been deployed by military forces and national security agencies in over 65 countries.

uAvionix receives US DoD AIMS certification for mode 5 micro IFF transponder for tactical UAS

uAvionix Corporation announced it achieved DoD AIMS Mk XIIB certification of its first Identification Friend or Foe (IFF) transponder, the RT-2087/ZPX-B. With this certification, ZPX-B becomes the world’s smallest, certified micro-IFF transponder, reducing Size, Weight, and Power Consumption (SWaP) characteristics of typical IFF transponders by more than 90%, and at less than half the size, one-third the weight, and one fourth the power consumption of other Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) targeted IFF solutions.

CP Technologies teams with GA-ASI to design Portable Aircraft Control Station for US Air Force

On March 30, CP Technologies announced it has teamed with General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. to design and manufacture the Portable Aircraft Control Station (PACS) for the US Air Force. 

BAE Systems wins $42.5 million contract from the US Navy for landing systems integration support

BAE Systems was awarded a four-year $42.5 million task order by the U.S. Navy to provide shore-based landing systems integration (LSI) support services for instrument carrier and instrument landing systems (ICLS/ILS). The new ILS provides U.S. Navy pilots with increased guidance capabilities by utilizing radio beam signals that aircraft computers translate, enabling pilots to correct their flight path and operate aircraft without instruction from an air traffic controller.

Bell and Sikorsky have been both awarded around $290.000.000 modification contract for the Future Long Range Assault Aircraft competitive demonstration

Bell Textron and Sikorsky have both been awarded around $290.000.000 modification contract for the Future Long Range Assault Aircraft Competitive Demonstration and Risk Reduction Phase 2. 

Citadel Defense secures new $5M C-UAS contract from US DoD

Citadel Defense has received a follow-on urgent contract award from the U.S. Department of Defense to protect servicemen and servicewomen from small drone threats.

B-2 Spirit aircraft conclude historic Bomber Task Force

B-2 Spirit aircraft from the 509th Bomb Wing, Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, flew the final mission of the most recent Bomber Task Force deployment, March 25, 2021.

Russian latest Il-112V military transport plane successfully completes 2nd test flight

Russia’s latest Il-112V military transport plane successfully completed its second flight from the airfield of the Voronezh Aviation Plant on March 30.

Saab trials 3D-printed part on Gripen for battlefield damage repairs

Saab has successfully conducted the trial which marked the first time an exterior 3D-printed part has been flown on a Gripen, rather than internal 3D-printed components. The purpose of the trial was to test how additive manufacturing could be used in battlefield damage repair.

Russia: Central Military District integrates Orlan-10 UAVs with BM-21 Grad MRLs

The units of the Central Military District (CMD) have integrated their BM-21 Grad 122 mm multiple rocket launch (MRL) systems with Orlan-10 tactical unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), according to the Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD).

Japan Coast Guard to add two H225 helicopters to its fleet

Japan Coast Guard (JCG) will expand its fleet with two new H225 helicopters, taking its total Super Puma fleet up to 17, comprising two AS332s and 15 H225s. The largest Super Puma operator in Japan received its tenth H225 in February this year. The new helicopters will join its growing fleet to support territorial coastal activities, security enforcement, as well as disaster relief missions in the country.

Sikorsky and DARPA fly OPV Black Hawk helicopter with supervised autonomy

Sikorsky and the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) are working to dramatically improve flight safety and operations so humans and machines can work together more seamlessly in the field. Sikorsky is leading the way toward a future where aircraft can be operated with two, one or zero pilots at all times of the day or night and in a variety of complex scenarios, including contested, congested, degraded visual environments (DVE).

Altius becomes first Russian drone with satellite communications

Altius unmanned aerial vehicle is the first Russian drone equipped with satellite communications, Chief Designer of the vehicle Ilya Matveev told Rossiya-24 TV channel.

Akinci combat drone 3rd prototype completes maiden flight

The third prototype for Turkey’s state-of-the-art unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) Akinci has completed its maiden flight, Selçuk Bayraktar, the chief technology officer (CTO) of Baykar, said on Twitter on March 27.

British Army Apache helicopters tested in the arctic circle

In recent weeks, UK's Apache Attack Helicopter pilots and crew have been training in challenging arctic conditions on Exercise Clockwork, to ensure their readiness for operations.

Raytheon awarded contract for Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missiles

Raytheon Missiles and Defense, Tucson, Arizona, has been awarded a $518,443,821 firm-fixed-price, incentive contract for Advanced Medium Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) Production Lot 34, with priced options for Lots 35 and 36.

Singapore receives its first H225M helicopter

The Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) has taken delivery of its first H225M helicopter in Singapore.

Norwegian F-35 aircraft take part in Red-Flag exercise

For the first time in history, Norwegian F-35 aircraft are used in exercise "Red-Flag" at Nellis Airforce Base in Nevada.

Royal Saudi Air Force to participate with US and Pakistan air forces in ACES Meet 2021-1 exercise

Contingents of Royal Saudi Air Force arrived at an operational airbase of Pakistan Air Force on March 26 to participate in a two-week long multinational air exercise “ACES Meet 2021-1”.



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