September 2023 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


Nigerian Armed Forces to get 12 new MD530F Cayuse Warrior helicopters

MD Helicopters (MDH) disclosed on September 28, 2023, that they have finalized a contract with the Nigerian government to supply twelve MD530F Cayuse Warrior scout/attack helicopters.

Australian Defence Force withdraws MRH-90 Taipan helicopters from service

The Australian Defence Force’s MRH-90 Taipan helicopters will not return to flying operations before their planned withdrawal date of December 2024. Defence Minister Richard Marles said the Government was focused on the introduction into service of the new fleet of UH‑60M Black Hawks.

Nigeria Air Force strengthens ISR and cargo capabilities with Airbus C295

According to a tweet published by Defense News Nigeria on September 27, 2023, the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) is in the process of receiving two C295 transport and surveillance aircraft from Airbus.

US Air Force initiates testing of Joby eVTOL aircraft at Edwards AFB

The U.S. Air Force received a Joby aircraft at Edwards Air Force Base as part of its $131 million Agility Prime contract. The aircraft is designed to carry up to 1,000 pounds of cargo or four passengers and can be operated either remotely or by a pilot.

Serbia proposes new 80mm laser-guided rocket for aircraft and helicopters

The Yugoimport's 80 mm Laser Guided Rocket (LGR) is a Serbian precision-targeting and engagement system featured at the Partner 2023 exhibition in Serbia. With an 80 mm caliber, it exhibits adaptability across different launching platforms, including helicopters and aircraft, suitable for both air-to-ground and air-to-air operations. This adaptability extends to its compatibility with various warhead types, such as Composite (COM), High Explosive (HE), and High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) variants, providing military operators with mission-specific choices.

Poland to become world's second largest Apache helicopter operator

On September 26, 2023, Mariusz Błaszczak, Poland's Minister of National Defense, toured Boeing's facility in Mesa, Arizona. The visit included an inspection of the AH-64 Apache attack helicopter production line. This follows Poland's decision to acquire 96 Apache helicopters, a move that has been approved by the U.S. Government.

BAE Systems receives 5-year contract from Lockheed Martin to sustain digital electronic warfare system of F-22 Raptor

BAE Systems has received a five-year contract from Lockheed Martin to sustain the AN/ALR-94 advanced digital electronic warfare (EW) system for the F-22 Raptor. Under the contract, BAE Systems will continue to manage EW system repairs and upgrades, supplier logistics, test equipment maintenance, and provide depot-level spares and engineering support to maintain F-22 EW readiness and relevancy for today’s air dominance mission.

US Air Force and Lockheed Martin complete first flight of U-2 spy plane avionics tech refresh

Lockheed Martin Skunk Works, in partnership with the U.S. Air Force, completed the first flight of the U-2 Dragon Lady's Avionics Tech Refresh (ATR) program.

Northrop Grumman to deliver SiAW Stand-in Attack Weapon air-to-ground missile for 5th-generation aircraft and beyond

Northrop Grumman announced on September 25 that the U.S. Air Force has awarded the company an approximately $705 million contract to deliver the Stand-in Attack Weapon (SiAW), an air-to-ground weapon that accelerates the pivot to a new generation of air power.

Chinese new KVD2002 reconnaissance and combat drone likely used in PLA exercises near Taiwan

The unveiling of an innovative Chinese Ground Force asset, reportedly named KVD002, has garnered attention due to its advanced capabilities. Sources indicate that this unmanned reconnaissance and strike aircraft has been actively engaged in operations near Taiwan since 2022, as reported by EurAsian Times.

F-35A and Typhoon demonstrate landing on Finnish highway

Lockheed Martin's F-35A fighter jets and Typhoon fighter jets have successfully landed on regular roads for the first time. These feats were part of military exercises conducted in Tervo, Finland, and marked an advancement in military aviation tactics. The exercises were not only a demonstration of expertise but also a strategic move to improve survivability and operational flexibility.

USAAF modernizes training fleet with first T-7A Red Hawk

The United States Air Force announced on September 21, 2023, that it had received the first T-7A Red Hawk aircraft, developed by Boeing Defense, Space & Security in partnership with the Saab group. This aircraft is intended to replace the aging Northrop T-38 Talon as the primary trainer of the United States Air Force (USAF).

Russia upgrades Ilyushin A-50U AWACS anticipating F-16 deliveries to Ukraine

According to the state corporation Rostec, the Russian Aerospace Force has acquired an upgraded version of the Ilyushin A-50U Airborne Early Warning and Control System (AWACS). In NATO jargon, this device is referred to as "Mainstay".

Argentine Air Force to acquire US CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters to replace Russian Mi-171Es

The Argentinian Air Force is exploring the possibility of acquiring decommissioned CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters from the United States. This development comes as the Argentinian military faces difficulties maintaining its Russian Mi-171E helicopters, mainly due to sanctions against Russia.

Congolese Air Force buys South African Paramount AHRLAC aircraft

The Congolese Air Force recently acquired four units of the Paramount AHRLAC (Advanced High-Performance Reconnaissance Light Aircraft), according to a company announcement dated September 12, 2023. In doing so, the Democratic Republic of Congo joins Mozambique as the operator of this multi-role aircraft. Manufactured in South Africa, the AHRLAC is designed for use in a variety of roles and is being considered by smaller air forces in Africa.

F-16 training programs for Ukrainian pilots underway according to the Pentagon

During a press conference on September 21, 2023, Pentagon spokesperson Brigadier General Pat Ryder emphasized the ongoing support of the United States for Ukraine, notably through specialized F-16 training programs for Ukrainian pilots. We will explore some of the key points of this interview.

French Air and Space Force close to stop operating C-135FR air tankers after receiving 12th Airbus A330 MRTT

Originally, Laurent Lagneau writes in Opex360, the French Air and Space Force’s intention was to order 14 tanker aircraft, but due to budget constraints, this figure was reduced to 12 before finally being increased to 15. The project to acquire Airbus A330 MRTT tanker aircraft to replace the Boeing C-135FRs, especially for the Strategic Air Forces, has undergone many changes since its launch over ten years ago.

Chinese President Xi Jinping says spirit of World War 2 Flying Tigers should live on

President Xi Jinping said that China and the United States, as major countries, will shoulder even more responsibility in the future for world peace, stability and development. So it is crucial for both countries to achieve mutual respect, peaceful coexistence and win-win cooperation, Xi Jinping added, echoed by China Military.

Austrian Ministry of Defense selects the Embraer C-390 Millennium as its new multi-mission medium military transport aircraft

The Austrian Ministry of Defense announced on September 20, 2023, the decision to select the Embraer C-390 Millennium multi-mission medium military aircraft as its new tactical transport solution. Austria is expected to acquire 4 or 5 of these aircraft to modernize its fleet. The C-390 Millennium aircraft is set to replace Austria's aged fleet of Lockheed Martin C-130Ks.

US Army 12th Combat Aviation Brigade in Europe receives new AH-64E V6 Apache Guardian attack helicopters

On September 1, 2023, the 12th Combat Aviation Brigade of the U.S. Army stationed at Wiesbaden Army Airfield, Clay Kaserne, Germany, proudly welcomed two cutting-edge Apache helicopters, AH-64Es, heralding a new era in their aviation capabilities. David Overson, U.S Army, reports.

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