Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Ukraine to Repair Engines of Vietnamese Su-27 Aircraft

Su-27 Vietnam People's Air Force (photo : lockonfiles)

Kyiv (Interfax-Ukraine) – Ukroboronservice state-owned enterprise, a part of the state-run concern Ukroboronprom, and Vietnamese VAXUCO have signed a contract on repairs of AL-31F aircraft engines for the Vietnam People’s Air Force.

The press service of the state concern told an Interfax-Ukraine agency that, according to the contract, the Ukrainian side will repair AL-31F aircraft engines at the “Motor” Lutsk Repair Plant in Volyn region. According to a separate agreement, apart from the repairs, the Ukrainian side will also provide Vietnam with technical consulting on overhauls of AL-31F aircraft engines.

The state concern did not disclose other details of the contract.

The AL-31F aircraft engines were designed for the Sukhoi Su-27 fighter aircraft and its modifications.

During a meeting between Ukroboronprom Director General Serhiy Hromov and Commander of the Vietnam People’s Air Force, Colonel General Phuong Minh Hoa before the signing of the contract, the sides reaffirmed their mutual interest in further bilateral military and technical cooperation.

Hromov said that in the near future the Ukrainian side would send to its Vietnamese partners its proposals on the supply and modernization of air defense equipment, aircraft and armored vehicles, as well as on repairs and upgrading of naval equipment. He stressed that training of Vietnamese experts was also an important part of cooperation.

Defense Ministry Will Order PTS-4 in 2014

PTS-4 amphibious transporter (photo : kbtm-omsk)

The Russian Defense Ministry is planning to include a new middle transporter PTS-4 in defense procurement in 2014, according to RIA Novosti . What is the number of machines can be purchased in the coming year and how much you plan to spend on them, is not specified.

According to the agency, the military were satisfied with booking cars, as well as the presence of her anti-aircraft machine gun with remote control and ammunition at 400 rounds. PTS-4 is equipped with a multi-fuel engine producing 840 horsepower. Weight transporter is 33 tons and 12 tons of load capacity ─ on land and 18 tons of water. With such a load machine is capable of speeds up to 60 and 15 kilometers per hour, respectively.

Three Nakhoda Ragam Class are Set to Move to Indonesia

BAE Systems Ships at Centre of Dispute Set to Leave Barrow Docks After Years in Limbo

THREE ships which have graced Barrow’s docks for more than five years after a dispute between BAE and the Sultan of Brunei are finally set to leave.

The three Nakhoda Ragam class vessels were built by BAE in Scotstoun, Glasgow, for the Royal Brunei Navy.

But after they were completed in 2002, Brunei refused to accept them, despite the ships being declared fit by the Royal Navy.

It is understood Brunei attempted to pull out of the deal because of operating costs and a lack of sufficiently trained personnel to operate the ships.

The legal battle was finally resolved by international arbitration in 2007 – in favour of BAE – and the ships were handed over to Brunei.

They were then moved to Barrow in 2007 to be stored at the docks while the German Lürssen shipyard, which had been contracted by Brunei, tried to find a buyer.

Now, after more than 10 years in limbo, a deal has been struck and the vessels are set to move to the warmer climate of Indonesia – in the weather the ships were designed to operate in.

Indonesia has reportedly paid just a fifth of the original £600m price tag for the three vessels. The ships are expected to enter service with the Indonesian navy within the next year.

The three corvettes are being maintained by Barrow shipping company James Fisher Marine Services.

As part of the deal to sell the ships, James Fisher sought to erect temporary living accommodation on nearby council land to house some of their own technical staff who have been providing safety cover on the corvettes.

The application was turned down by Barrow Borough Council but following an intervention by Barrow MP, John Woodcock, and undertakings by James Fisher to address the council’s concerns, Barrow Town Hall officers will now be supporting the planning application.

Mr Woodcock said: “There is real economic value in keeping the corvettes in Buccleuch Dock, with Barrow-based employees working on board them and income for local businesses from the visiting sailors.”

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

KAI Publishes Small KF-X Concept

Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) has published a drawing of a moderately stealthy fighter concept based on its T-50 series of supersonic trainers and light-attack aircraft. The concept aircraft is far smaller and less ambitious than the all-new, twin-engine KF-X designs promoted by the Agency for Defense Development, the leading proponent of building an indigenous South Korea fighter.
Some South Korean industry officials doubt that the country has the technical resources to build the KF-X, especially if major civil aerospace programs go ahead at the same time; a 90-seat turboprop airliner is also proposed. But a KF-X derived from a current type would demand less engineering and may benefit from stronger pricing by avoiding competition with the Lockheed Martin F-35, although Saab is already in the market for advanced but moderately sized fighters with its Gripen E/F.
The T-50 and its FA-50 light fighter derivative are themselves based on the F-16 and were developed with help from Lockheed Martin, but the stealthy concept, called KF-X-E, departs from the F-16 planform used for the earlier aircraft. Some wing and fuselage edges are parallel, and the trailing edges of the main and tail planes are swept forward. The fuselage sides have chines. Nose volume of the KF-X-E appears to be small, limiting the size of the radar antenna, but the airframe seems to have more volume overall than the T-50, offering more space for internal fuel and thereby minimizing the need for external tanks and their radar reflections.

F-16 pilots may soon be using small Windows 8 tablets in flight

Inside the cramped cabin of an F-16 fighter jet, military pilots have to bring in a lot of gear: printed reports, flight maps, manuals, and paper checklists for their missions and aircraft procedures.
"It's like sitting in a tub," an F-16 pilot who asked for anonymity told CITEworld. "They have side arm controllers, so the flight controls are where you rest your arms. It's a tight cockpit. There's not a lot of room for stuff."
To try to solve those space problems, Netherlands-based PaceBlade Technology is working to develop a digital flight bag for F-16 pilots using 8-inch Windows 8 tablet computers. The small tablets can easily fit inside the cramped workspace and sit right on a pilot's knee.
PaceBlade CTO Eric Cornelisse, who has served as a military pilot in his native Netherlands and is now in the reserves there, said that he and others in his company were approached directly by other military pilots who were seeking answers to the problem.
Cornelisse explained why the company took a chance on the new 8-inch Windows 8 tablet recently released by Acer, the Iconia W3, rather than sticking with the more common iPad or Android tablets that other companies are using for similar projects.
"Military pilots are doing trials with iPads and also working with Android devices around the world," he said. "But there were a couple common things that they found. The iPad was too big and they didn't have full control over the content."

Australia and Indonesia Sign Memorandum of Sale for Five C-130H Hercules

Today in Perth, Indonesian Defence Minister Purnomo and I witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Sale between Australia and Indonesia for five C 130H aircraft and associated equipment.
During my visit to Jakarta in April this year, I confirmed that the Australian Government was willing to sell five C-130H aircraft, along with a simulator and spare parts, to Indonesia at a discounted rate.
This offer was in addition to the four C-130H aircraft that Australia is currently in the process of transferring to Indonesia following discussions between our respective leaders in November 2011.
The sale of a further five C-130H transport aircraft will further enhance Indonesia’s capacity to respond to natural disasters and humanitarian crisis.
The Memorandum of Sale was signed by Australia’s Chief of the Defence Force, General Hurley, and Indonesia’s Head of Defence Facilities Agency, Rear Admiral Lubis.
The Memorandum sets out the arrangements for the sale of the five aircraft, simulator and spare parts to Indonesia.

4 Firms to Participate in DND Attack Helicopter Program

MANILA (PNA) -- Four international helicopter manufacturers have participated in the pre-bid conference of the Dept. of National Defense's attack helicopter program.

These firms are the Boeing Company, Eurocopter Group,AgustaWestland NV and MD Helicopters, Inc.

All four aerospace companies have acquired the required bidding documents.

The Boeing Company is an American multinational aerospace and defense corporation.

Founded in 1916 by William E. Boeing in Seattle, Washington, the company has expanded over the years, and merged with McDonnell Douglas in 1997.

Boeing moved its corporate headquarters from Seattle to Chicago, Illinois, in 2001.

It is made up of multiple business units, which are Boeing Commercial Airplanes; Boeing Defense, Space & Security (BDS); Engineering, Operations & Technology; Boeing Capital; and Boeing Shared Services Group.

The Eurocopter Group is a global helicopter manufacturing and support company.

It is the largest in the industry in terms of revenues and turbine helicopter deliveries.

Its head office is on the property of Marseille-Provence International Airport in Marignane, France, near Marseille.

Defense Chief Says Purchase of 8 Sokol Choppers from Poland is Last

MANILA, Philippines—”Of what use is a combat helicopter if you cannot use its machine gun?” President Aquino asked in his State of the Nation Address on Monday.

On Tuesday, Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin said the purchase of eight Sokol helicopters from Poland would be the last by the Department of National Defense (DND) since they could not be used in combat, after all.

“I understand helicopters because I’m a combat officer. The first thing I noticed was, why do you have to remove the machine gun before you can get inside it? The entrance is too narrow, it’s all wrong,” said Gazmin, a former Army Special Forces commander.

The P2.8-billion deal with Augusta PZL Swidnik of Italy and Poland for eight Sokol helicopters had been signed, sealed and delivered when he assumed office in July 2010, Gazmin said.

“We just had to make the payment,” he said.

The eight Sokol (Falcon in Polish) helicopters were delivered in two batches in 2012.

The contract was finalized during the last months of the Arroyo administration when Norberto Gonzales, the national security adviser, was also defense secretary.

Monday, July 29, 2013

After Malala Accident in Pakistan Taliban threatening Hina Khan From Swat

  • Behind the Scene
    “A nation can survive its fools, even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within….for the traitor appears not to be a traitor…he rots the soul of a nation…he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist.” (Cicero) Rise and fall of a nation depends upon the level of sincerity and loyalty of its individuals with their motherland. The nations cannot stand long lasting whose individuals sell their conscious and soil for the sake of fake fame and some easy money. Such people may enjoy a temporary worldly perks and privileges but history remembers them, for ever, as traitors, like Mir Jaffar and Mir Sadiq.

    Ominously, there are a few black sheep in our society (so-called civil society) who are always eager to fulfill the soft nefarious designs of the enemy at the cost of their conscious and the dignity of their nation. In this context, Mr Riatullah is one of the best examples to be quoted at the moment. He is running an NGO namely; Female Education Human Rights Organization (FEHRO). He, along with his two wives; Farhat and Shagufta, and a daughter; Hina Khan is hankering to achieve a lofty fame and huge money from the hostile countries against fulfilling their evil agenda. He is preparing his fifteen years old daughter to achieve the similar status of Malala Yousafzai. He is the using the platform of his NGO in collaboration with some other NGOs to set the whole drama designed by the enemy. The drama aims to malign Pakistan in the international world and pose Pakistan as a failed state in the comity of nations through the help of local and international media. Right after the terrorist attack on Malala Yousafzai in October last year, Mr Riatullah started propagating that Taliban are threatening his daughter, Hina Khan due to her role in girls’ education in Swat. Same like Malala, Hina Khan is also a brave Pushtun girl who has challenged the Swati Taliban that she would continue her efforts in advocating girls’ right to get modern education against will of the Taliban. Enhancing his propaganda further, Mr Riatullah succeeded to get a red cross chalked on the gate of his house in Islamabad by the Taliban symbolising the same as life threat for Hina Khan. He also managed to receive a mobile phone call by Taliban from Peshawar warning that his daughter,

    Hina Khan was their next target after Malala. Later on, the news was highlighted by international media which left no stone unturned to malign Pakistan in a very negative way. Even, a foreign TV channel declared Pakistan as “the country having second worst record in the world for getting girls into schools”. Letting the plot going further, one of our neighbouring Islamic countries offered four Jirb land and Rs 600,000,000,0/- (six hundred million rupees) to construct a “Hina Khan University” in Kabul in which the girls from Pakistan (void of education in their own country) and Afghanistan will get higher modern education. In fact, the mentioned huge sum of money will not come from Afghanistan but from somewhere else... Quite after Eid ul Fitar, Mr Riatullah will gather a group of girls from different Pakistani NGOs in Dubai who will pose themselves as the victims of terrorism, barbarism, deprived of basic human rights and education in their own country and they are here to get asylum for the time being.
    These girls will also meet some Indian intelligence officials who will guide them about future course of action. Possibly, during the same time, Hina Khan will face a fake attack from the Tilban in which she would survive dramatically. After which, the family would managed their asylum in Canada where they would openly preach that Pakistan is a conservative and failed state which cannot guarantee a peaceful life for her citizens and there is no space for radical people like them in Pakistan. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

DND to Acquire P20M Rescue Boats

DND to acquire two rescue boat (photo : PhilStar)

MANILA, Philippines - The Department of Defense (DND) is currently in the market for two 40-foot rescue boat to boost maritime operations, a release said Friday.

The agency set aside P20 million from its Quick Response Fund of P232 million for the new acquisition.

Winning bidders should deliver the boats within 180 calendar days upon opening of the letter of credit, DND said.

The purchase of rescue boats is among the department's recent investments including eight attack helicopters for P3.4 billion and 12 fighter jets for the Philippine Air Force.

PCG to Buy ex-French Navy Patrol Ship

La Tapageuse P691 a 55 meter patrol vessel, stationed in Papeete, French Polynesia (photo : mer et marine)

The Philippine Coast Guard is set to acquire a former French Navy vessel worth €6 million to boost its off-shore patrol capabilities in the West Philippine Sea.

Coast Guard commandant Rear Admiral Rodolfo Isorena said the procurement of 54.8-meter French Navy vessel La Tapageuse has already been approved by Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya.

Isorena said the PCG is looking forward to this new acquisition that is expected to boost its capability for maritime search and rescue operations, maritime law enforcement, maritime safety, maritime environmental protection and maritime security.

"This French vessel is multi-functional and it would be a major contribution to our fleet. Unlike other vessels that are more appropriate for (Search and Rescue) operations, this soon-to-be latest addition was made for sovereignty patrol and law enforcement", Isorena said.

He added the vessel will be deployed to places like the West Philippine Sea, Northern Luzon, and Southern Mindanao.

The Tapageuse has a built-in 40-millimeter anti-aircraft gun, a 20-millimeter anti-aircraft cannon, and two 7.62-millimeter machine guns.

The PCG will be buying the ship at a reasonable price of €399,000 but the refurbishing of the ship would entail additional cost. The Philippine government will be spending a total of €6.295 million or an equivalent of Php 354,754,000 million.

Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Lands Major Military Truck Order in Australia Worth €1.1 billion

Rheinmetall MAN truck (photo : Rheinmetall)

The Australian Defence Force has contracted with Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH (RMMV) of Germany, a joint venture company of Rheinmetall AG and MAN Truck & Bus AG, to supply it with an extensive fleet of advanced logistical vehicles. Under a far-reaching modernization programme, the Australian Defence Force (ADF) is procuring some 2500 protected and non-protected logistical vehicles from Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia. The recently signed contract is worth €1.1 billion (AUD 1.58 billion).

This order reinforces RMMV’s role as one of the world’s leading makers of military wheeled vehicles. In a hard-fought contest, Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia overcame rival bids from top European and American competitors thanks to a compelling proposal that met the customer’s demanding specifications in every category.

Following a meticulous selection process, the Australian military have thus opted for RMMV’s tried-and-tested, high-mobility, extremely robust family of vehicles. The new vehicles will replace the ADF’s current fleet, which is made up of equipment from a number of different manufacturers. These state-of-the-art RMMV systems will enhance the Australian military’s operational effectiveness and mobility as well as assuring improved crew survivability. In addition, having a uniform fleet will result in synergy effects with regard to spare parts, maintenance and training, resulting in substantially lower operating costs.

Under this order, which forms part of Phase 3B of Australia’s “Land 121” modernization programme, Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles Australia will be supplying trucks in a number of different weight classes in various configurations. These include medium and heavyweight recovery vehicles, heavy-duty logistical vehicles, integrated load handling systems as well as medium-sized cargo bed variants with cranes, fuel and water modules and tipper bodies.

Ukraine to Repair Engines of Vietnamese Su-27 Aircraft

Su-27 Vietnam People's Air Force (photo : lockonfiles)

Kyiv (Interfax-Ukraine) – Ukroboronservice state-owned enterprise, a part of the state-run concern Ukroboronprom, and Vietnamese VAXUCO have signed a contract on repairs of AL-31F aircraft engines for the Vietnam People’s Air Force.

The press service of the state concern told an Interfax-Ukraine agency that, according to the contract, the Ukrainian side will repair AL-31F aircraft engines at the “Motor” Lutsk Repair Plant in Volyn region. According to a separate agreement, apart from the repairs, the Ukrainian side will also provide Vietnam with technical consulting on overhauls of AL-31F aircraft engines.

The state concern did not disclose other details of the contract.

The AL-31F aircraft engines were designed for the Sukhoi Su-27 fighter aircraft and its modifications.

During a meeting between Ukroboronprom Director General Serhiy Hromov and Commander of the Vietnam People’s Air Force, Colonel General Phuong Minh Hoa before the signing of the contract, the sides reaffirmed their mutual interest in further bilateral military and technical cooperation.

Hromov said that in the near future the Ukrainian side would send to its Vietnamese partners its proposals on the supply and modernization of air defense equipment, aircraft and armored vehicles, as well as on repairs and upgrading of naval equipment. He stressed that training of Vietnamese experts was also an important part of cooperation.

German Submarines for Poland?

At the end of May 2013, the German and Polish defense ministers signed a Letter of Intent on naval cooperation. What does that mean for Polish submarine plans?
Poland’s current submarine fleet includes 1 Russian Kilo Class boat, ORP Orzel external link, which was commissioned in 1986. Another 4 modernized U207 Kobben Class external link pocket submarines of German design were given to Poland by Norway, who added 1 Type 207 used for spares/ training. The tiny 435t Type 207s were commissioned in Norway from 1964 – 1967, which doesn’t leave them much of a safe lifespan.

Poland’s 2013 – 2022 defense modernization plan expects to finalize specifications for new submarines by the end of 2013. Two would be bought in 2022, and a 3rd in 2030. Poland’s shipyards had been expecting to participate, and to receive technology transfer benefits.
A copy of the LoI received by Defense Industry Daily sets out 28 named cooperation domains. They include joint exercises and services, exchange of knowledge and personnel, operational activities together, and the acquisition and maintenance of new equipment.
Procurement projects include include common procurement and operation of Joint Support Ships, and of mission modules for Germany’s 6 forthcoming MKS180/ K131 special mission ships. New oilers and tankers are listed as a common development and operation case: Poland operates only ORP Baltyk, and Germany’s 2 remaining Walchensee Class coastal tankers were commissioned in 1966.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

DARPA considers unmanned submersible mothership designed to deploy UAVs and UUVs

ARLINGTON, Va., 23 July 2013. Unmanned vehicles designers at the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in Arlington, Va., will brief industry next month on a project to develop an unmanned submersible designed to transport and deploy unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) stealthily close to enemy operations.
DARPA will conduct industry briefings on the Hydra program from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on 5 Aug. 2013 at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory – Kossiakoff Center in Laurel, Md. Briefings will precede release on a broad agency announcement (BAA) for the Hydra program, DARPA officials say.
The Hydra program will develop and demonstrate an unmanned undersea system with a new kine of unmanned-vehicle delivery system that inserts UAVs and UUVs. stealthily into operational environments to respond quickly to situations around the world without putting U.S. military personnel at risk.
The Hydra large UUV is to use modular payloads inside a standardized enclosure to deploy a mix of UAVs and UUVs, depending on the military situation. Hydra will integrate existing and emerging technologies in new ways to create an alternate means of delivering a variety of payloads close to where they're needed, DARPA officials say.
The Hydra program also will seek to develop and demonstrate not only the unmanned vehicle mothership, but also examples of the UAVs and UUVs that could be carried into battle covertly.
The rising number of ungoverned states, piracy, and proliferation of sophisticated defenses severely stretches current resources and influences U.S. military capability to conduct special operations and contingency missions, DARPA scientists say.

Izhmash Gets $390M Order

IZHVESK, Udmurt Republic — Izhmash arms factory, manufacturer of the legendary Kalashnikov assault rifle, has won a 13 billion ruble ($390 million) Defense Ministry tender for antitank missiles, the company said Monday, in one of its "largest state orders in recent years."
Izhmash is to deliver Vikhr-1 long-range, supersonic armor-piercing missiles by the end of 2015, company chief executive Konstantin Busygin said.
The Vikhr-1 contract will enable Izhmash to tackle almost all of its financial problems, he said in late May, adding that its current debt stood at 3 billion rubles.
Busygin also said the company had asked the Russian government for financial assistance to complete its merger with gunmaker Izhmekh under the Kalashnikov brand. The two companies, both based in the city of Izhevsk, have been experiencing financial difficulties and a sharp drop in production output.
The two enterprises will become the new Kalashnikov Corporation, first proposed by Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin, who oversees defense industry. It is due to be registered in time for Russia's Arms Makers' Day, September 19.
Izhmash, which produces over 70 types of weaponry, including firearms, aircraft guns and precision artillery rounds, as well as a variety of sporting and hunting weapons, previously said it expected to sign 14.2 billion rubles worth of contracts for precision-guided weapons, without specifying the timeframe.
Izhmash has been manufacturing Kalashnikovs since the world-famous assault rifle first went into series production in 1949, while Izhmekh is best known for producing Makarov and Yarygin pistols, according to the companies.

Boeing Delivers Indian Air Force's 2nd C-17 Globemaster III

Boeing [NYSE: BA] delivered the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) second C-17 Globemaster III today, a month after India’s first C-17 arrived in the country and immediately began supporting IAF operations.
This second IAF C-17 also will immediately enter service. India will receive 10 aircraft by 2014.
"Our first C-17 Globemaster III not only signifies a tremendous boost in our strategic airlift capability, but also is poised to form a major component in the IAF's modernization drive,” said Air Chief Marshal NAK Browne, Chief of the Indian Air Force. “Because it was delivered mission-ready, it soon undertook its first strategic mission to our Andaman Nicobar Command at Port Blair. I wish to place on record my appreciation to the U.S. government, the U.S. Air Force and the Boeing team for the timely delivery of the aircraft that makes the IAF the world's second-largest operator of the C-17 after the U.S."
Boeing is on schedule to deliver three more IAF C-17s this year and five in 2014. The C-17 can operate in extreme climates, transport large payloads across vast ranges and land on short, austere runways.
“C-17s have an important role in supporting unique Indian Air Force operations in remote locations such as the Himalayas and desert environments," said Nan Bouchard, Boeing vice president and C-17 program manager. "The C-17 provides the versatility to complete any mission, anywhere. We look forward to working with the Indian Air Force and the U.S. Air Force as we deliver the remainder of India’s fleet."
Boeing is supporting the IAF aircraft through the Globemaster III Integrated Sustainment Program (GISP) Performance-Based Logistics contract. The GISP “virtual fleet” arrangement ensures mission readiness by providing all C-17 customers access to an extensive support network for worldwide parts availability and economies of scale.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Cuba says missiles found on North Korean ship are obsolete

Cuba said military equipment found buried under sacks of sugar on a North Korean ship seized as it tried to cross the Panama Canal was obsolete weaponry from the mid-20th century that it had sent to be repaired.

Panamanian authorities said it might take a week to search the ship, since so far they have only examined one of its five container sections. They have requested help from United Nations inspectors, along with Colombia and Britain, said Javier Carballo, Panama's top narcotics prosecutor. North Korea is barred by U.N. sanctions from importing sophisticated weapons or missiles.

Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli said Tuesday that the ship identified as the 14,000-ton Chong Chon Gang, which had departed Cuba en route to North Korea, was carrying missiles and other arms "hidden in containers underneath the cargo of sugar."

Martinelli tweeted a photo showing a green tube that appears to be a horizontal antenna for the SNR-75 "Fan Song" radar, which is used to guide missiles fired by the SA-2 air-defense system found in former Warsaw Pact and Soviet-allied nations, said Neil Ashdown, an analyst for IHS Jane's Intelligence.
"It is possible that this could be being sent to North Korea to update its high-altitude air-defense capabilities," Ashdown said. Jane's also said the equipment could be headed to North Korea to be upgraded.

North Korea has not commented on the seizure, during which 35 North Koreans were arrested after resisting police efforts to intercept the ship in Panamanian waters last week, according to Martinelli. He said the captain had a heart attack and also tried to commit suicide.

Friday, July 19, 2013

China Seen Surpassing the U.S. as Superpower, Poll Shows

People around the world see the U.S. as a waning superpower with China poised to supplant it, according to international polling conducted for the Pew Research Center.
The polling shows people in many countries already view China as the leading economic power. Among the 39 countries surveyed, six -- including the U.S. and Japan -- had pluralities or majorities saying that China will never replace the U.S. Regardless of which country is seen as the economic powerhouse today, many publics believe China will eventually replace the U.S. as the world’s leading superpower, if it has not already done so,” according to the report released today by the Washington-based Pew Center’s Global Attitudes Project.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development in Paris said in a March 22 report that China’s economy, now the world’s second-biggest, is on course to overtake the U.S. as the largest in about 2016, when adjusted for relative purchasing power.
China has an economic gap to close if it is to do. Its gross domestic product of $8.23 trillion last year was about half the $15.68 trillion of the U.S., according to International Monetary Fund data. That gap narrows when purchasing power is taken into account, putting China’s output at $12.41 trillion, according to the IMF.
China’s military forces are decades behind those of the U.S., as the Chinese work to develop their first aircraft carriers and to expand their ballistic missile arsenal.

China’s Neighbors

The Pew report’s broader findings were summarized in its title: “America’s Global Image Remains More Positive Than China’s But Many See China Becoming World’s Leading Power.”
Across the nations surveyed, Pew found that a median of 63 percent gave the U.S. a favorable rating, compared with 50 percent for China. Those surveyed in many nations voiced concern about China’s rise, the authors wrote.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Iran unveils domestically manufactured VTOL drone

The Islamic Republic of Iran has unveiled a domestically manufactured vertical-takeoff-and-landing (VTOL) unmanned aerial vehicle, which can take photos, videos, and control traffic.

The Mahnad-41 drone, which was designed and manufactured by Iranian technicians of the Khallaqiyat Kavir Company, was put on display in the city of Isfahan during a ceremony attended by Iranian Deputy Minister of Science, Research and Technology Mohammad Mehdinejad Nouri on Sunday evening.

The VTOL drone is capable of taking photos and video footage while flying and can be used to control traffic, technically inspect electricity transmission towers, and generate digital topographic maps of target sites.

It can also be used in the agricultural sector, the petrochemical industry, and dam and tunnel construction projects.

The remote-controlled aircraft weighs about 680 grams, can fly at 56 kilometers (34 miles) per hour, and has a flight range of 400 meters.

Khallaqiyat Kavir Company Managing Director Hamed Bastani commented on the new drone at the unveiling ceremony in Isfahan, which is located about 340 kilometers (211 miles) south of Tehran.

Bastani said the low production cost compared to similar foreign aircraft and the fact that it is domestically designed and manufactured are some of the advantages of the Mahnad-41.

North Korea caught ‘smuggling missiles’ in Panama Canal

ROGUE state North Korea has sparked a fresh missile scare after one of its ships was caught trying to sneak "sophisticated" weapons in a shipment of sugar.

Coastguards in the Panama canal made the incredible find of "undeclared weapons of war" hidden among a shipment of brown sugar coming from Communist Cuba.
The captain of the ship then tried to kill himself during the dramatic incident - rather than face punishment in Panama or possibly from North Korean dictator Kim Jong un.
Violence broke out among the 35-strong crew as the North Korean-flagged ship was raided.
Panama's president Ricardo Martinelli then posted a photograph of the cargo on his Twitter account saying: "The world needs to sit up and take note: you cannot go around shipping undeclared weapons of war through the Panama Canal".
Reports claimed the photo showed an anti-ship missile.
The seizure will raise fears that Kim Jong Un is going ahead with nuclear missile plans.
Earlier this year he threatened to launch strikes at the US and South Korea.
Martinelli told Radio Panama: "We had suspected this ship, which was coming from Cuba and headed to North Korea, might have drugs aboard so it was brought into port for search and inspection.
"When we started to unload the shipment of sugar we located containers that we believe to be sophisticated missile equipment, and that is not allowed."
The missile find comes as South Korea also accused the North Korean regime of launching a series cyber attacks against them.

Netherlands Military Partnership with China Expanded

The Netherlands’ military partnership with the Chinese armed forces is to be expanded, the defence ministry announced Monday.

Chinese General Hou Shu Sen spoke on Monday with the Dutch military top brass, General Tom Middendorp. The idea is to strengthen maritime cooperation in particular.

The navies of the two countries already work in partnership on combating piracy off the coast of Somalia. The Netherlands participates here in the anti-piracy missions of the EU and NATO.

To tighten the ties, a Chinese taskforce will visit HMS Johan de Witt for a few days in November. This amphibian transport ship of the Royal Marines is then taking over the command of the EU anti-piracy mission Atalanta for the Horn of Africa.

There have already been more exchanges in this region. For example, a medical delegation from HMS Van Speijk has visited the Chinese hospital vessel Peace Ark. The Dutch frigate flies under the NATO flag in the mission area.

The possibility of the hydrographical services of the Dutch and Chinese maritime forces exchanging information will also be considered. This is intended among other things to lead to better security on the North Sea, where many Chinese ships sail.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Nato aircrafts violate Pakistani airspace

Two aircrafts of Nato forces in Afghanistan on Wednesday evening violated airspace of neighbouring Pakistan by infiltrating into its boundaries by several kilometers.
Intelligence sources told that the aircrafts penetrated into the Pakistani airspace through Pak-Afghan Torkham border.
The aircrafts returned back to Afghanistan after flying for several minutes within Pakistani boundaries without causing damage or getting involved in any other violation of rules.
This is however not the first occasion when Nato aircrafts violated Pakistani airspace. Similar incidents have been witnessed in North Waziristan, Kurram, Mohmand and Khyber tribal agencies in the past.
On November 26, Nato helicopters attacked Salala military checkpoint in Mohmand Agency at Pak-Afghan border, killing up to 28 Pakistani troops.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

US Intelligence Report a Cut-Paste on Chinese Missiles

College students can be flunked for cut-and-paste reports, think tankers can be embarrassed, Defense News staff writers can be fired, but not, apparently, members of the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC).
Most of its so-called “updated” report, 2013 Ballistic and Cruise Missile Threat, which contains contributions from the Defense Intelligence Agency Missile and Space Intelligence Center and the Office of Naval Intelligence, was largely a cut-and-paste job from its 2009 report. Some of the material is identical to the 2006 and 1998 report.
Though it was reformatted and photographs rearranged with some being enlarged or decreased, the 2013 report appears verbatim from the 2009 report. This clever reordering and reformatting with new color schemes for boxes and graphs is embarrassing since there is more impressive data on Chinese missiles on Wikipedia.
The best illustration is the sections on Chinese missiles. Media reports have exclaimed that the new report indicated that China’s ballistic missile development program is the “most active and diverse” in the world.
“China has the most active and diverse ballistic missile development program in the world. It is developing and testing offensive missiles, forming additional missile units, qualitatively upgrading missile systems, and developing methods to counter ballistic missile defenses. The Chinese ballistic missile force is expanding in both size and types of missiles,” the 2013 report stated.
Actually, it is the exact same paragraph in the 2009 report and a paraphrase from the 2006 report.
There is a slight emphasis this year in anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD) missile systems such as the DF-21D (CSS-5) anti-ship ballistic missile, which is “specifically designed to prevent adversary military forces’ access to regional conflicts.” This is hardly new information and one wonders why it was left out in the 2009 report.
The next paragraph from the 2013 report, “China is adding the CSS-10 Mod 2 (DF-31A) to the ICBM force and future ICBMs could utilize multiple independently-targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs),” is a slight improvement from the 2009 report, but the statement that “the number of Chinese ICBM nuclear warheads capable of reaching the United States could expand to w
ell over 100 within the next 15 years,” indicates that the writers do not have a sense of time and space because this line is reused from the 2009 report and a paraphrase of the 2006 report. So, since 2006, has there been any substantial change in China’s capability of firing ICBM nuclear warheads at the US? There is no evidence, according to the 2013 report, there have been any advancements at all.
Short-Range Ballistic Missiles (SRBM)

With SRBMs on China the report does inform the reader that a new DF-16 (CSS-11) missile is being deployed “in the vicinity of Taiwan.” The information is not based on US intelligence, but “according to Taiwanese government officials.” The 2009 report only said that, “China has deployed a very large force of modern solid-propellant SRBMs in the vicinity of Taiwan.”
Medium-Range and Intermediate-Range Ballistic Missiles (MRBM/IRBM)

Cut-and-paste resumes once again in this section on China. The statement that “new MRBM and/or IRBM systems are in development in China, North Korea, Iran, India, and Pakistan,” and “these are strategic systems, and many will be armed with nonconventional warheads. All of these countries except Iran have tested nuclear weapons,” are identical to the 2009 report and a paraphrase of the 2006 report.
The 2013 report finally adds something new, using the terms used for the A2/AD concept: “China continues to maintain regional nuclear deterrence, and its long-term, comprehensive military modernization is improving the capability of its ballistic missile force to conduct high-intensity, regional military operations, including ‘anti-access and area denial’ (A2/AD) operations. The term A2/AD refers to capabilities designed to deter or counter adversary forces from deploying to or operating within a defined space,” the 2013 report stated. The problem with this statement is that China’s A2/AD doctrine is not new and could have been mentioned as early as NASIC’s 2009 report.

Japan defense ministry says China naval fleet seen off northern coast

A Chinese naval fleet was Sunday spotted sailing for the first time through an international strait between northern Japan and Russia's far east, the Japanese defense ministry said.
The two missile destroyers, two frigates and a supply ship passed through the Soya Strait from the Sea of Japan to the Sea of Okhotsk early Sunday, the ministry said.
The channel, also known as La Perouse, separates the Russian island of Sakhalin and the northernmost Japanese island of Hokkaido.
The five ships took part in joint naval exercises with Russia from July 5-12 off Vladivostok.
Two other Chinese naval ships which also took part in the drills were seen moving into the East China Sea on Saturday.

View Larger Map The purpose of the Chinese fleet's passage through the Soya Strait is not known, Kyodo news agency quoted a ministry official as saying.
On Saturday a fleet of 16 Russian naval ships was seen moving through the Soya Strait into the Sea of Okhotsk, the ministry said.
China and Russia held the joint naval exercises — their second such drill — amid regional concerns about China's growing maritime power.
Tensions have been growing over China's island dispute

US to Deploy New Spy Drone in Middle East Instead of Asia

The US is planning to deploy its advanced MQ-4C Triton spy drone in the Middle East due to the increasing instability, instead of deploying it in the Asia-Pacific region, as planned.
The spy drone is likely to be operational by the end of 2015. The US Navy originally planned to put the latest drone into service by the end of 2016 in Guam to monitor the Asia-Pacific region.
The volatile environment in the Middle Eastern region fuelled by the ongoing Syrian civil war, unrest in Egypt and Iran's controversial nuclear programme has forced Washington to change its mind.
The US officials insisted the surveillance aircraft, which was part of the Obama administration's defence measures, will serve its purpose effectively in the Middle East rather than in Asia.
Authorities said Triton will be deployed with the 5th Fleet positioned in the Bahrain base, according to NHK World.
The sophisticated unmanned vehicle, which can fly up to 28 hours at an altitude of 18,000 meters, was reportedly designed to keep an eye on the growing Chinese maritime activities in the region.
The unmanned aircraft has been developed under the Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) programme of the Obama administration.

Monday, July 15, 2013

IAF’s MiG-21 Bison fighter aircraft crashes, pilot killed

Jodhpur: A MiG-21 Bison fighter aircraft of the Indian Air Force crashed on Monday while landing at Uttarlai airbase in Rajasthan's Barmer district, killing the pilot.

"One MiG 21 Bison crashed at the Uttarlai airbase at about 0930 hours. The pilot sustained fatal injuries," the IAF said in a statement.

The aircraft had taken off with its Flight Lieutenant- rank pilot from the airbase for a routine training sortie and crashed while landing at the runway, officials said.

Defence Ministry spokesperson in Jodhpur Colonel SD Goswami said a Court of Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the reason behind the crash.

There was no reported loss to civilian life or property, he said.

Last month also, a MiG-21 plane from the same airbase had crashed but the pilots had managed to eject safely. The vintage MiG-21s have been in service for over 40 years now and they are expected to continue flying till 2018-19 in view of the delays in the induction of the indigenous Light Combat Aircraft.

5th-generation fighter plan hits hurdle as Russia hikes cost

NEW DELHI: India's biggest defence project in the making, the critical joint development of the fifth-generation fighter aircraft (FGFA) with Russia, has flown into some rough weather.

Defence ministry sources said the inking of the final design and R&D contract for the stealth fighter has been hit by a huge delay, with Russia also jacking up costs for the futuristic project. "It's very unlikely the FGFA final design contract will be concluded in the 2013-2014 fiscal," said a source.

This contract was to be inked in 2012 as per the then revised timeline after completion of the preliminary design contract (PD C) phase. India will eventually end up spending close to $35 billion over the next two decades to induct over 200 such "swing-role" fighters.

The plan till last year was that India would begin inducting the FGFA from 2022 onwards, with IAF test pilots getting three prototypes in 2014, 2017 and 2019 for trials at the Hindustan Aeronautics manufacturing facility at Ozar.

"The timeframes will now have to be revised. MoD has established a committee of specialists and finance officials to verify the rise in costs. An internal contract negotiation committee is also in progress," said the source.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Seaplane DHC-6 Series 400 Ready to Protect Vietnam's Waters

The pilots first training alongside a DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400 livery of Air Force Vietnam Navy (photos : ThanhNien)

(TNO) On 10.7, in the province of British Columbia (Canada), corporations Viking Air aircraft manufacturing and its subsidiaries Pacific Aviation has organized the graduation ceremony and pilot training seaplane operators DHC-6 Twin Otter Series 400 (also known as the Guardian 400) for 8 Navy Air Force pilot in Vietnam. This is the first training contract purchased 6 Guardian 400 that the Naval Aviation Vietnam signed with Viking Air.

Speaking at the ceremony, Mr. Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade Canada, confirmed the deal to buy 400 planes Guardian 8 event along with Vietnam pilots completed the training excellent marking a new step in cooperation between the two sides, as well as provide much promise for the future.

Share with Thanh Nien Online, Viking Air representative said the Vietnam began to care about Guardian 400 from 2008. In that year, the Farnborough Airshow held at the Hampshire (UK), the two sides have exchanged Viking Air first and then authorize Canam Active company with offices in Ho Chi Minh City to represent marketing.

More Patrol Boats for Coast Guard

A 52 meter vessel will equip PCG (photo : jimbrickett)

MANILA, Philippines—Aside from the 15 patrol boats it expects to get from Japan and France in late 2014 or early 2015, the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) plans to acquire a 52-meter vessel from an unnamed country, the PCG announced Tuesday.
Cmdr. Armand Balilo, also chief of the PCG public affairs office, said the vessel would be “second-hand but in very good condition.”
“The project has been approved for negotiation by the DOTC. But there’s no timetable yet for the purchase of the patrol boat,” he said. The Coast Guard is a Department of Transportation and Communications-attached agency.
Balilo did not go into detail.
But on the patrol boats from France, he said “the government is wrapping up talks with its French counterpart.”
“We’re hoping delivery of the new boats would be made late next year or early in 2015,” he said
Last month, the National Economic and Development Authority approved the procurement of the French patrol boats.
In October 2012, the PCG announced it was buying the patrol vessels—one 82-meter craft and four 24-meter boats—for around 90 million euros ($116 million or P5 billion).

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Second Batch of Gepard Equipped with Sthil-1 Missile

Project 11661K Gepard 3.9 (image : QDND)

Revealing Weapon of 2 New Gepard Warships of Vietnam

According to a spokesman of the Russian shipyard Zelenodolsk, the plant will continue to launch missile corvette pair of Project 11661K Gepard 3.9 for Vietnam Navy in September.

Two ships next Gepard 3.9 (the third and fourth) for Vietnam Navy under the contract to provide additional was signed in 2012 between Russia and Vietnam, after the ship Gepard 3.9 that is capable of performing well for operation in coastal waters in the South China Sea.

Shtil-1 medium-range shipborned anti aircraft missile (photos : igorgroup, datviet)

As revealed by Zelenodolsk plant, two Gepard 3.9 new corvettes will be delivered to the Vietnam Navy in 2016 and and 2017.

Russia to Offer Post-Sales Services for Malaysia Jet Deal

TUDM MiG-29N (photo : scramble)

MOSCOW (RIA Novosti) – Russia is interested in adding post-sales maintenance and training to future arms contracts with Malaysia, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday, in an apparent attempt to give Russia a competitive edge in an upcoming combat jet tender.

“We are interested in continuing military cooperation [with Malaysia], and not only in the form of arms deliveries, which we had quite a few before, but also in providing the post-sale servicing of the sold equipment and the training of the Malaysian personnel to operate this equipment,” Lavrov said at a joint news conference with his Malaysian counterpart, Anifah Aman.

Russia delivered 18 MiG-29A fighters to Malaysia in 1994-1995, followed by 18 Su-30MKM fighters in 2009. It also sold Malaysia 12 Mi-171Sh military transport helicopters.

Lavrov's offer of maintenance and training may have come in response to previous problems experienced by the Royal Malaysian Air Force in keeping its MiG-29 fleet operational.

“Malaysia bought the MiG-29s at a relatively low price, but later on the RMAF had to contend with higher expenses in spare parts replacement and maintenance work,” former Defense Minister Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said in 2010, when questioned about the aircraft's performance, the local Star Online news website reported.

MiG executives blamed the reliability issues on Malaysia's purchase of parts from Ukraine and India rather than the original supplier, according to Take-Off magazine.

Russia opened a servicing center in Malaysia in 2012 and a pilot training center in 2011, Lavrov said.

Russian aircraft maker Sukhoi and the Malaysian Defense Ministry signed a $100-million contract this year for maintenance of Malaysia’s fleet of Su-30MKM fighters, Russian defense industry officials said previously.

Malaysia has recently shortlisted five manufacturers in a tender for 18 combat aircraft for delivery by 2015 to replace ageing Russian-built MiG-29s.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Russia to Get New Su-35, MiG-35 Jets Within 3 Years

New MiG-35 and Su-35 fighter jets will be delivered to the Russian Air Force in large numbers within the next three years, after resolution of some problems found during their final tests, Deputy Defense Minister Yury Borisov said on Wednesday.
"There are problems with completion of the state order for these models," he said. "They will start to enter service en masse in the next three years, I think," he added, but did not elaborate.
Delivery of the Mikoyan MiG-35 Fulcrum and Sukhoi Su-35 Flanker multirole fighters, both touted as "4++ generation" aircraft, is part of the state armament program through 2020, he said.
The Su-35, powered by two 117S turbofans with thrust-vectoring, features high maneuverability and the capability to engage several air targets simultaneously. The Russian Air Force ordered 48 Su-35s in 2009, Sukhoi said when the deal was signed. It is due to receive them by 2015.
The MiG-35, an advanced derivative of the MiG-29, can be armed with air-to-air and air-to-surface guided missiles and is fitted with the Zhuk-A advanced multimode radar, according to MiG. In April, MiG's CEO Sergei Korotkov said he expected the company would sign a deal by the middle of this year to sell the aircraft to the Russian Air Force.

Saudi Arabia directing ballistic missiles toward Israel, Iran

IHS Jane's Intelligence Review reveals new base near Al-Watah; launch pad appears to be aligned on bearings at Israel, Iran.


Saudi Arabia may be targeting Israel and Iran with long-range missiles, a prominent monthly journal on military intelligence revealed on Tuesday.
Robert Munks, deputy editor of IHS Jane’s Intelligence Review, said the report’s findings have “a low chance for error as we employ in-house satellite analysts,” with one having “many years of experience viewing satellite imagery for the US military.”
The journal’s analysts examined a number of satellite images of a base built within the last five years approximately 200 kilometers southwest of Riyadh, and compared them to photos of similar sites in China since “the missiles likely to be used are Chinese” and the complex had a similar layout.

View Larger Map They found that one of the Saudi launch pads “appears to be aligned on a bearing of approximately 301 degrees and suggesting a potential Israeli target, and the other is oriented along an azimuth (bearing) of approximately 10 degrees, ostensibly situated to target Iranian locations.”
According to the report, the launch pads were designed for Saudi Arabia’s arsenal of DF-3 missiles, which Riyadh reportedly acquired from Beijing in the 1980s. The missiles, which are launched from trucks, have a range of 1,500-2,500 miles (2,400-4,000 km.) and can each carry a two-ton payload.
Munks said the photo released to the public is one of many magnified images that are only available to the company’s customers.
He cautioned against sensationalizing the report, stating that the journal does not have any images of missiles or launchers at the site.
“What you see is what you get,” he said, adding that the operational status of the site is uncertain, but that it is at least partially operational because there is a recreational area as well, meaning that people are based at the site.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Ultra Awarded a £32m Contract for the Mid-Life Modernisation of Indonesian Navy Warship

KRI Fatahillah 361 (photo : Erwin Adji)

Ultra Electronics announces that its Command & Control Systems business, based in High Wycombe, has been awarded a contract worth £32m by the Republic of Indonesia’s Ministry of Defence for the mid-life modernisation of the first of the Fatahillah Class corvettes.

The contract includes the development, installation and integration of a new combat management system. The marine engineering aspects of the work package will be undertaken by Ultra’s partner, Nobiskrug with its local subcontractor in Indonesia.

The programme start remains subject to funding provision and the contract will then be delivered over a 28 month period. Discussions regarding the mid-life modernisation of the second ship in the class are expected to start later in the year.

Ultra's integrated approach to naval C2 and combat management systems offers numerous benefits to maritime forces world-wide in terms of operational capability, flexibility and throughlife costs.

Tank Buster' Over the Shoulder of Vietnam Navy

Matador is a 90 mm (3.5 in) man-portable, disposable anti-armor weapon system (all photos : Phunu Today) 

(PhunuToday) - Matador is a light anti-tank missiles in accordance with the task of protecting and occupying the island for the Vietnam Navy rating.

MATADOR was developed from the 2000s, to replace the outdated system ARMBRUST the Army payroll in the Republic of Singapore. After a series of memorandum and Development Cooperation light anti-tank weapons, the Republic of Singapore Army (SAF), Department of Science and Technology with 2 Singapore military defense industry corporations large Israeli Rafael and Dynamit have a project to develop a model rocket attacks shoulder to equip Guard Forces SAF and Israel.

MATADOR line of shoulder missiles kill light tank with bore sizes up to 90mm, using two types of warheads is HEAT standard attack and Hesh. This is a collaboration product from Singapore and Israel maintained military. The prototype of the missile system MATADOR shoulder of the Federal Republic of Germany ARMBRUST but is much improved and has made a remarkable mark in the anti-tank missile systems in the world shoulder.

MATADOR was developed from the 2000s, to replace the outdated system ARMBRUST the Army payroll in the Republic of Singapore. After a series of memorandum and Development Cooperation light anti-tank weapons, the Republic of Singapore Army (SAF), Department of Science and Technology with 2 Singapore military defense industry corporations large Israeli Rafael and Dynamit have a project to develop a model rocket attacks shoulder to equip Guard Forces SAF and Israel.

DND in the Market for 8 Attack Choppers

MANILA, (PNA) -- Defense Dept. spokesperson Dr. Peter Paul Galvez Tuesday confirmed the Philippines is in the market for eight brand new attack helicopters.

He said the acquisition process has been ongoing since last year.

Galvez said this upgrade project has a budget of P3,441,460,000 and will be sourced from the General Appropriations Act and the AFP Modernization Act Trust Fund of 2000.

The helicopters must have full night operation capability and complete weapons systems aside from integrated logistics support package.

Documents obtained by the Philippines News Agency suggested: "These helicopters shall be capable of performing close air support during day and night, and navigate safely during inadvertent instrument meteorological condition.

"Furthermore, they shall be equipped with armaments and avionics system highly suitable for said flying operation conditions.

"The guiding principles for this project shall be based on affordability and sustainability while conforming to the requirements of our Air Force in furtherance of accomplishing its mission."

Indian army to get Rudra choppers, armed with missiles and rockets in Aug

After fighting a messy turf war with the IAF over getting its own ``attack'' helicopters, the Army will take a major step forward in getting airborne firepower by raising its first-ever dedicated squadron of "armed'' choppers next month.
The first squadron of ``Rudra'' helicopters, the weaponised version of ``Dhruv'' advanced light helicopters (ALH) manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL), will be raised in Bangalore and later deployed in the western sector facing Pakistan, said sources.
While not in the class of heavy-duty ``attack'' helicopters, which have greater combat capabilities and armour protection, each Rudra will be armed with a chin-mounted 12.7mm canon, 70mm rockets, Magic Matra air-to-air missiles and anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) to form a ``deadly package'' against enemy forces.
"The difference between attack and armed helicopters is blurring. The Rudras will constitute the third dimensional maneuver arm to provide ground commanders with a lethal edge,'' said a source.
"The ALHs did excellent rescue work in Uttarakhand recently. With combat firepower, speed and mobility, they will prove their worth in military operations too. While a Dhruv costs Rs 47 crore, each Rudra comes for Rs 71 crore,'' he added.

Australian Navy Leading the World with MRH90 Helicopter Introduction at Sea

Australian MRH90 Taipan helicopters operating at sea. (all photos : RAN)

The Royal Australian Navy is leading the world in bringing the new MRH90 ‘Taipan’ Multi-Role Helicopter into service at sea.

The Navy’s soon-to-be-commissioned 808 Squadron has been conducting trials, testing, evaluation and training on the MRH90 Taipan helicopter since 2010.

When 808 Squadron’s commanding officer, Commander Charlie Stephenson, travelled to the Netherlands recently to present to 12 other nations currently introducing this variant of the MRH90 - known internationally as the NH90 Troop Transport Helicopter (NH90 TTH) - he left them a little surprised and very impressed by the Royal Australian Navy’s progress to date.

The international forum known as the NH90 User Group provides the opportunity for armed services operating variants of the NH90 to share knowledge, experiences and gain valuable lessons learnt to benefit all members.

“I was invited to present on how the RAN is operating the MRH90 at sea because the RAN is the only service worldwide to be operating the troop transport variant of this aircraft at sea.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

New Missiles for Israeli Antitank Brigades

IDF antitank brigades to soon part with the TOW ('Orev') missile, and a new advanced missile will enter use in the coming yearsThe TOW antitank missiles, named Orev by the IDF, will soon stop being used by regular IDF forces, and will be replaced by newer missiles in the coming years.

Work has been underway at the bureau of the IDF's Chief Infantry Officer to examine replacement weaponry since the Second Lebanon War, when TOW missiles were not used and the need arose for more relevant battlefield weaponry.

The IDF Ground Forces antitank battalion layout consists of four teams: three teams utilizing the Orev missile and named for it, and one team that uses the Rafael-produced Gil missile. The three Orev teams will now begin using Gil missiles, and will later be equipped with a new light missile that is currently being examined and tested.

Euro GPS Galileo gets ready for nuclear missile use

Back in March, The European Space Agency’s (ESA’s) global positioning system (GPS) alternative Galileo successfully found a ground location at tests in The Netherlands.
With only four of its satellites visible at once, the ESA was chuffed that the system worked for the first time and popped out a canned statement to that effect.
It has since emerged that the March tests weren’t just on the garden-variety version of the service that might find its way into consumer-grade devices.
Galileo’s various signals include the "Public Regulated Services" (PRS), an encrypted offering the EU says “will be restricted to authorized users by governments for sensitive applications that require a high level of continuity.”
What kind of users does that mean? The EU says “The PRS is reserved to the Council, the Commission, the Member States, possibly to duly authorized agencies of the European Union, third countries and international organizations” who will use it for “emergency services, critical transportation, energy or telecom and defence purposes.”
The page we’ve linked to above goes on to say that “even if Galileo is the first civilian GNSS in the world, nothing prevents the Member States to use it for military purposes.”
News that the spooknav capabilities of Galileo are working emerged in another canned statement from QinetiQ, which together with Septentrio made the kit capable of slurping the signal. QinetiQ says its boxen found objects to within ten metres of their actual location.
PRS’ existence has not been hidden and it’s been flagged to come online in 2014, so it’s not as if QinetiQ’s statement represents either a revelation or an unfortunate slip.
But in these post-Snowden times, knowing that the European Union’s members will soon be able to access secure, encrypted, location services is surely worth knowing whether you’re a freedom-loving individual or a government with an interest in tracking things. Throw in the recent signoff for the eCall emergency car-tracker and it’s clear the EU is about to get lot busier finding things.


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