July, 2009 Military Aviation News

Russia expects $2.6 bln in military aircraft sales in 2009


Russia's state arms exporter Rosoboronexport has said military aircraft will continue to dominate the company's foreign sales in 2009, and will total about $2.6 billion.

4 Russian Mi-17 Helicopters to Afghan Army for $43.5M


The Afghan National Army Air Corps is procuring 4 Mi-17 variant helicopters and related tool kits from Defense Technology Inc. (DTI) in Huntsville, AL for $43.5 million. The Naval Air Systems Command in Patuxent River, MD, manages the firm-fixed-price contract (N00019-09-C-0089).

Boeing Delivers Harpoon Missiles With Updated Guidance Control


Boeing in June delivered the first four Harpoon Block II missiles equipped with a redesigned Guidance Control Unit (GCU), which provides growth capabilities and resolves obsolescence issues. The missiles were delivered to the U.S. Navy for transfer to two Foreign Military Sales customers.

Boeing Rolls Out US Navy's P-8A Poseidon


The Boeing Company and the U.S. Navy today formally unveiled the service's newest maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft, the P-8A Poseidon, during a ceremony at the Boeing facility in Renton, Wash.

Raytheon to Supply APG-73 Radar Spares for the F/A-18C/D Hornets


Raytheon Co. in El Segundo, CA received a maximum $48.7 million firm-fixed-price sole-source contract for spare AN/APG-73 radar systems and parts for the U.S. Navy F/A-18C/D Hornet fighter aircraft. Raytheon will perform the work in California, Massachusettes, Mississippi and Texas. There was originally 1 proposal solicited with 1 response. The date of performance completion is July 2012. Defense Logistics Agency Procurement Operations in Philadelphia, PA manages the contract (N00383-07-G-700H-T

Lockheed Martin Awarded Customs And Border Protection P-3 Orion Fleet Maintenance Contract


Lockheed Martin has been awarded an $821 million maintenance, repair, and overhaul contract for the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) P-3 Orion fleet. The contract is for a base period of one year, with nine additional one-year options. CBP currently operates 16 P-3s, updated with a suite of modern surveillance sensors oriented towards conducting homeland security missions.

DRDO unit to develop low-cost radar system


The Centre for Airborne Systems (CABS) at Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) is all geared up to develop a low-cost indigenous radar system, which they claim can be similar or more advanced than the Israeli Phalcon Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS). This will reduce India’s dependence on Israel and create more business opportunities for the local industry.

U.S. pact speeds trials for India's $10.4 billion jet buy


India will begin field trials in August to buy 126 fighter jets, defense officials said on Wednesday, moving forward on the $10.4 billion deal two days after New Delhi agreed a defense pact with the United States.

Italian Air Force Typhoon committed to the air policing task of the Albanian air space


The Typhoons of the Gioia del Colle Air Base’s 36th Stormo of Italian Air Force have started their air policing task over the Albanian air space as requested by NATO.

Lockheed Martin Unveils First Stealth Fighter For U.S. Navy


A ceremony today at Lockheed Martin’s Fort Worth plant marked the rollout of the U.S. Navy’s first-ever stealth fighter, the F-35C Lightning II. The aircraft will enable the Navy to possess 5th generation fighter capabilities at sea, extending America’s reach and reducing the timeline from threat to response.

Indian Air Force Will Not Decommission MiG-29s


According to India Defence Online, the Indian Defence Ministry has clearly reiterated that the 67 MiG-29 aircraft with the Indian Air Force (IAF) will not be decommissioned. The Defence Ministry also stated that the Russians have furnished the reason for the crash of the MiG-29 in India in December 2008.

Saudis Increase A330 MRTT Tanker Buy


In January 2008, EADS North America announced that The Royal Saudi Air Force will acquire 3 of EADS A330 Multi-role Tanker/Transports (MRTTs), equipped with both EADS centerline-mounted ARBS (advanced Air Refueling Boom System) for use with its F-15s et. al., and a pair of underwing hose-and-drogue refueling pods suitable for use with the Saudis’ forthcoming Eurofighter Typhoon Tranche 2s. The configuration is similar to that specified for the Royal Australian Air Force’ KC-30B refueling aircraf

Boeing Observes 45th Anniversary of Sea Knight Helicopter 1st Flight


The Boeing Company today recognized the service of the CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter, which completed its first flight 45 years ago this month. One hundred sixty-eight of the 624 aircraft originally produced remain in operation with the U.S. Marine Corps and are still maintained by Boeing.

Lockheed Martin Awarded $142 Million Arrowhead Production Contract


The U.S. Army has awarded Lockheed Martin a $142 million follow-on production contract for the Apache Arrowhead® system, the combat-proven, Modernized Target Acquisition Designation Sight/Pilot Night Vision Sensor (M-TADS/PNVS) for the AH-64D Apache attack helicopter.

Multinational Alliance's 1st Boeing C-17 Joins Heavy Airlift Wing in Hungary


The first Boeing C-17 Globemaster III acquired by the NATO Airlift Management Organization and the Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC) consortium officially joined the Heavy Airlift Wing (HAW) at Pápa Air Base, Hungary, today, as part of a ceremony commemorating the activation of a new airlift capability for 10 NATO and two Partnership for Peace nations.

Boeing Delivers 400th F/A-18E/F Super Hornet to US Navy


The Boeing Company today announced that it delivered the 400th F/A-18E/F Super Hornet to the U.S. Navy in June.

Northrop Grumman, Air Force Prove New B-2 Radar Meets Mission Requirements


Northrop Grumman Corporation and the U.S. Air Force have successfully demonstrated that the new radar developed for the B-2 stealth bomber can fulfill the performance requirements for its required missions, both conventional and strategic.

Northrop Grumman Contributes Expertise to Military Exercise Demonstrating Increased Sharing of Reconnaissance Information


Northrop Grumman Corporation is playing a major role in Empire Challenge 09 (EC 09), a joint military exercise to demonstrate how U.S. and coalition forces can better work together to collect, analyze and share reconnaissance information.

Boeing Awarded Production Contract for US Air Force AWACS Block 40/45 Upgrade


The Boeing Company today announced that it has received a $44 million Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) contract for the Block 40/45 upgrade of the U.S. Air Force Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) fleet. The contract, awarded by the Electronic Systems Center at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., marks the official beginning of the Block 40/45 production phase.

Austrian Air Force’s Eurofighter Typhoon fleet reaches 1,000 flying hours milestone


The Eurofighter Typhoons in service with the Air Surveillance Wing of Österreichische Luftstreitkräfte, Austria’s Joint Armed Forces Command, have reached the 1,000 flying hours milestone.

Boeing KC-767 Tankers for Italy Complete Military Utility Observation


Two of the KC-767 aerial refueling tankers that Boeing is building for the Italian Air Force recently performed a series of airborne boom contacts and fuel offloads in observation test flights with the U.S. Air Force Flight Test Center at Edwards Air Force Base. The flights included KC-767 fuel transfers with a U.S. Air Force F-16 aircraft as well as from one KC-767 to the other.

Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet for Australia Takes Flight


The first Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) F/A-18F Super Hornet takes off from Lambert International Airport in St. Louis July 20 to begin its initial flight. Boeing unveiled the aircraft July 8 at the company's Integrated Defense Systems facility in St. Louis.

U.S. and India Achieve Breakthrough on Key Defense Deal


In a significant step that puts decades of Cold War baggage behind the world’s two largest democracies, the United States and India have achieved consensus on a key bilateral agreement that promises to bolster the U.S. and India as reliable partners for the long future in the sensitive areas of defense and security trade.

Revolutionary Aircraft Remains World's Most Powerful, Most Survivable Airborne Weapon System


Twenty years ago today, the first Air Force/Northrop Grumman Corporation developed B-2 Spirit stealth bomber, a tailless, bat-like flying wing named The Spirit of America, lifted off for its maiden flight from Air Force Plant 42 here. That historic flight from Palmdale to Edwards Air Force Base lasted just over two hours, but it would alter forever the face and nature of modern air warfare.

US fighter jet crashes in Afghanistan; 2 crew dead


A U.S. Air Force F-15E Strike Eagle fighter jet crashed early Saturday in central Afghanistan, killing the two crew members, the U.S. military said.

RAF pair safe after Afghan crash


Two RAF pilots are being treated in an Afghan hospital after their fighter jet crashed in the south of the country.

Boeing Delivers 12-Nation Strategic Airlift Capability’s 1st C-17 Globemaster III


The Boeing Company today delivered the first Strategic Airlift Capability (SAC) C-17 Globemaster III during a ceremony at its final assembly facility in Long Beach, paving the way for the advanced airlifter’s historic arrival at Pápa Air Base, Hungary, later this month. The SAC’s approach to shared use of the strategic airlifter is regarded as a model for the pooled acquisition and management of defense capabilities.

Lockheed Martin DAGR Rockets Successfully Fired From Airborne AH-6 Little Bird, Strike Targets


Lockheed Martin has launched DAGR™ rockets from an airborne AH-6 Little Bird helicopter and successfully hit the target in two separate trials. This is the second platform DAGR has fired from in the past few months—Lockheed Martin also fired DAGR rockets from the AH-64D Apache helicopter in March.

Meet India’s SU-30MK1 jet fighter


During a 2004 friendly exercise with the Indian Air Force in Gwalior, India, the U.S. Air Force was humbled when the Indian SU-30 MK1 fighter outscored the best U.S. air domination fighter, the F-16C. U.S. General Hal Hornburg, commander of the Air Combat Command, lamented that it was a “wake-up call” for the U.S. Air Force and that it had been bested by the relatively unknown air power, India.

Chile to push for chopper deal with Russia despite U.S. pressure


Chile plans to continue talks with Russia on the delivery of five Mi-17 multirole helicopters for the Chilean Air Force despite pressure from the United States, a government spokesperson has said.

Israel orders U.S. stealth planes to counter Iran, Syria threat


Israel has ordered at least 25 U.S. F-35 stealth fighter aircraft to counter any potential threat from the delivery of Russian advanced air defense systems to Iran and Syria, an Israeli daily said on Friday.

Northrop Grumman Delivers Upgraded U.S. Navy Targets


Northrop Grumman Corporation has delivered to the U.S. Navy two retrofitted BQM-34 Firebee aerial targets, the first delivery in a series of BQM-34 targets retrofitted with current production avionics hardware and software capability from the BQM-74E product line.

Eurofighter Instrumented Production Aircraft Complete Key Flight Tests


Eurofighter Typhoon’s Instrumented Production Aircraft (IPA) have been busy lately, pushing forward in the testing of the fleet of development aircraft. IPA 7 recently completed a Paveway IV bomb handling, qualities familiarising flight at EADS site in Manching. The flight which took two hours and seven minutes saw the aircraft flying with six Paveway IV bombs, four MRAMMs and two SRAAMs missiles on board.

India says satisfied with Su-30 fighter, despite recent crash


India is satisfied with the performance of Russian Su-30MKI fighters, despite a crash in April, and plans to double the number in service with the air force by 2015, the defense minister said on Wednesday.

Moody A-10s to receive new sniper pods


Moody Air Force Base A-10 Thunderbolt II pilots operating over Iraq and Afghanistan this fall will be armed with new targeting pods designed to increase the already lethal capabilities.

Boeing Debuts 1st Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18F Super Hornet


Boeing today unveiled the first of 24 F/A-18F Block II Super Hornets for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) during a ceremony at Boeing Integrated Defense Systems' production facilities in St. Louis. The aircraft will be delivered later this month, three months ahead of schedule.

Successful first operational NATO assessment of a Eurofighter Wing


Excellent results were achieved after the first operational evaluation made by NATO of a Eurofighter Typhoon Wing. A NATO evaluation team certified the Italian Air Force’s 4th Fighter Wing at the Grosseto Base as a NATO Quick Response Force.

18th Air Force Commander C-130J Delivery Continues U.S. Air Force Build-Up Of Super Hercules Fleet


Lockheed Martin yesterday delivered the 14th of 16 C 130J Super Hercules to Little Rock Air Force Base, Ark. The aircraft will be assigned to the 41st Airlift Squadron, the first active-duty combat C-130J squadron in the U.S. Air Force. This latest C-130J Super Hercules was accepted by Major General Winfield W. Scott III, Commander 18th Air Force, Scott Air Force Base, Ill.

Modified Boeing Chinook Mk3 Successfully Completes 1st Test Flight


Boeing Defence UK Ltd., a subsidiary of The Boeing Company, today announced that a UK Chinook Mk3 helicopter successfully completed its first test flight on June 6 at the Ministry of Defence's Boscombe Down facility during the flight testing and evaluation phase of the Mk3 reversion program.

Aerial gunners provide cover for lifesaving mission


U.S. Air Force combat search and rescue crews on HH-60G Pave Hawks fly throughout Afghanistan to provide airlift and medical care to servicemembers wounded on the battlefield.

Program Aims to Deliver Unprecedented Surveillance Capability


A giant, unmanned airship capable of hovering at about 70,000 feet promises to give future warfighters an unprecedented eye on the battlefield.

India Dumps Its MiG-21s


India has decided to retire 60 percent of its 250 MiG-21 fighters over the next two years. The only ones remaining will be the upgraded MiG-21bis models. The reason is simple, the aircraft are too expensive to maintain and too dangerous to fly. Last month, India lost another MiG-21 to an accident. In the last few years, India believed it had cleared up many of the reliability problems with the MiG-21. Actually, they have, but the MiG-21 remains a dangerous aircraft to operate. India has been usi

Plan to Acquire MiG-29 Dropped


Sri Lanka has dropped a plan to acquire the Mikoyan MiG-29, a fourth generation multi-role jet fighter currently in service in over 30 countries.

F-22's future still up in air Congress, Obama duel over funding for fighter


Congress and the Obama administration are locked in a dogfight over the future of the F-22 fighter jet.

Pakistini army helecopter crash kills 26


A military helicopter crashed in Orakzai Agency near the Afghan border on Friday, killing 26 security personnel.

Indian air force opts for US plane


The Indian Air Force has chosen Boeing’s C-17Globemaster III for its strategic airlift capability, preferring the American aircraft over traditional supplier Russia.

Switzerland has been planning to buy Eurofighter aircraft


Switzerland has been planning to buy 22 Eurofighter aircraft, a deal worth over $2 billion. But now, after a year of negotiations and flight tests, Swiss politicians have told Germany (the principal member of the consortium that produces the aircraft) that the deal won't go through unless there are some concessions on other matters (bank secrecy, taxation and air traffic). Linking defense sales to politics is nothing new, and shouldn’t surprise anyone.

MiG-29 jets to be sold off, replaced with interceptors


The air force's MiG-29N jetfighters will be sold off and replaced with new aircraft, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said.

Guided Air-Ground Rockets: Program Halts & New Entries


In “Hydra-70 Rockets: From Cutbacks to the Future of Warfare,” Sen. Leahy’s [D-VT] work to keep the Hydra 70mm rocket family alive through special appropriations was discussed, just in time for the Hydras’ potential on the battlefield to rise again. The key was the addition of low-cost precision guidance, which would expand the number of precision weapons carried by helicopters, aircraft, and even UAVs. “APKWS II… Hydra Rockets Enter SDD Phase,” discussed a laser-guided version from BAE, General

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