January, 2017 Military Aviation News

Closer look at Saudi’s new ‘Eagle Fighter’ jets

01/24/2017

The skies of Saudi Arabia will soon witness the new addition to its navy’s arsenal: The F15 – SA jets that will be known as the “Eagle Fighters”. The jets are expected to be launched at a ceremony next Wednesday which will be attended by Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz at King Faisal Air Force academy celebrating the 50th anniversary of its founding.

LIGHT ATTACK: REMOVING THE VEIL ON OA-X

01/24/2017

There has been a recent flurry of press attention on OA-X, an Air Force effort to obtain off-the-shelf light attack aircraft. Sen. McCain’s recent publication of Restoring American Power — which calls for the Air Force to acquire 300 light attack aircraft — will no doubt intensify interest in the idea, with many constituencies trying to define OA-X for their own benefit and profit.

Taiwan Begins Upgrade of 144 F-16 Fighter Jets

01/24/2017

The Republic of China Air Force (ROCAF) has begun upgrading its fleet of 144 Lockheed Martin F-16 A/B Fighting Falcon combat aircraft to the latest F-16 configuration, dubbed V for “Viper,” according to local media reports.

US State Department approves $1.8 billion in arms deals

01/24/2017

The US State Department has inked $1.8 billion in arms deals for the UK, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Kenya this week, including air-to-air missiles and threat detection systems. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency announced the approved the deals 23 January. The foreign military sales are pending Congressional approval.

Super Hornet could compete with Lockheed F-35

01/24/2017

Boeing’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet could steal orders away from the Lockheed Martin F-35 if the Trump Administration adjusts defence priorities, military acquisition analyst Andrew Hunter told an audience 23 January at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

BAE develops digital HUD replacement for F-22

01/24/2017

BAE Systems will develop a digital replacement for the cathode ray tube-based Lockheed Martin F-22 head-up display (HUD). The contract awarded by Lockheed calls for BAE to develop a system that fits the dimensions and power used by the current system. BAE anticipates that a follow-on order will lead to a retrofit production programme for the roughly 180 F-22s in the US Air Force fleet.

ANALYSIS: Israel wings it on F-35

01/24/2017

On 12 December 2016, Israel underscored its Middle East air supremacy by receiving its first pair of Lockheed Martin 5-35I “Adir” stealth fighters. Dignitaries gathered at Nevatim air base to mark the occasion included Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu; the US ambassador to Israel, Daniel Shapiro; US defence secretary Ashton Carter; and Marillyn Hewson, the president of Lockheed Martin.

US Approves $525Mln Sale of Threat Warning System to Saudis

01/24/2017

The Department of State said that the US government approved the sale of a new threat detection system costing more than half a billion dollars to Saudi Arabia.

Beijing Not Backing Down: South China Sea War Games the New Normal

01/24/2017

Foreign interests should expect Chinese military exercises in the South China Sea to become the new normal, according to a recent article in The People’s Daily, a Chinese state-run media outlet.

Iraqi forces are gaining on Daesh in Mosul offensive

01/23/2017

Commander of Nineveh Liberation Operation, Lieutenant General Abdul Amir Yarallah, said on Saturday that the 9th Armored Division and the 3rd Brigade of the First Division in the Iraqi Army had freed al-Qousiyat village on the outskirts of Mosul, located some 400 kilometers north of the capital Baghdad, and hoisted the national flag over several buildings there.

The Pacific Pivot: How Obama’s Massive Foreign Policy Shift Ended Up In Tatters

01/23/2017

President Barack Obama’s greatest foreign policy achievement was meant to be his “pivot to Asia,” but while there were successes, his dream was never fully realized. China is rapidly expanding its sphere of influence and tightening its grip on the seas, North Korea is stronger and more aggressive, Obama’s legacy free-trade agreement is all but buried, and American allies and strategic partners are losing confidence in American promises and are even tilting towards America’s strategic rivals.

Stealth Bombers Flying from Aircraft Carriers: 5 Killer Weapons the U.S. Military Never Built

01/23/2017

Weapons die for all kinds of different reasons. Sometimes they happen at the wrong time, either in the midst of defense austerity, or with the wrong constellation of personnel. Sometimes they fall victim to the byzantine bureaucracy of the Pentagon, or to turf fights between the services. And sometimes they die because they were a bad idea in the first place.

Former defence chief Tom Lawson fears Liberals fighter jet plan too pricey

01/23/2017

The former head of Canada's military says the Liberal government’s plan to buy an interim fighter jet fleet will be expensive and difficult to carry out. Retired general Tom Lawson, who served as chief of the defence staff from 2012 to 2015, says he believes Canada will end up buying Lockheed Martin's F-35 fighter jet to replace the current fleet of CF-18 Hornets despite the government choosing Boeing's Super Hornet to beef up the current air craft.

13 Marine Aircraft to Deploy to Australia

01/23/2017

The Marine Corps this spring is sending its largest aircraft element to date -- four tilt-rotor Ospreys and five Super Cobra and four Huey helicopters, all out of Hawaii -- to the next $25 million rotation of Marines to northern Australia as the Corps continues to redistribute its forces around the Pacific.

The Real Russia-China Connection That Should Worry America

01/23/2017

One need only point to the recent arrival of the long-sought after Russian-made Su-35 fighter aircraft into China’s air combat arsenal, not to mention the increasing scope and pace of Russian-Chinese naval exercises to realize this is the case. Yet, China-Russia cooperation often operates “below the radar” and this edition of Dragon Eye will examine one aspect of the partnership that is somehow usually missed: the Arctic.

Russia Conducting No Talks on Creating Military Bases in Libya

01/23/2017

Russia is not conducting talks on creating military bases in Libya, Viktor Ozerov, head of the Russian Federation Council's defense committee, said on Sunday.

PAK DA's Precursor, Russian Tu-160M2 Bomber to Get Universal Anti-Missile Shield

01/23/2017

The newest incarnation of Russia's Tu-160 supersonic variable-sweep wing heavy strategic bomber/missile carrier, one of Moscow's most formidable weapons, is expected to have double the functionality of its current version.

Are U.S. Aircraft Carriers Nearly Unsinkable?

01/22/2017

The bottom line on aircraft carrier survivability is that only a handful of countries can credibly pose a threat to America's most valuable warships, and short of using nuclear weapons none of those is likely to sink one. Large-deck, nuclear-powered aircraft carriers are the signature expression of American military power. No other combat system available to U.S. warfighters comes close to delivering so much offensive punch for months at a time without requiring land bases near the action.

Red Flag air combat exercise will rattle windows near Nellis starting Monday

01/22/2017

Nellis Air Force Base officials say residents in the north Las Vegas Valley can expect to hear excessive military aircraft noise starting Monday as more than 80 fighter jets, bombers and support aircraft depart and return to the base twice a day for the year’s first Red Flag air combat exercise.

Taiwan expected to complete F-16 upgrades within six years: AIDC

01/22/2017

Taiwan's state-owned Aerospace Industrial Development Corp. (AIDC) said it has begun an upgrade of the country's fleet of U.S.-manufactured F-16 fighter jets and that the work is expected to be completed within six years. The first batch of four F-16s is being upgraded at the AIDC's plant, said the company, adding that a new hangar will be launched soon to facilitate the retrofit program.

Japan scrambled jets against approaching aircraft a record 883 times over nine months; most incidents involved China

01/21/2017

Japan scrambled fighter jets against aircraft approaching its airspace a record 883 times over the nine months through December, with 73 percent of the incidents involving Chinese aircraft, the Defense Ministry said Friday. The number was up 316, or 36 percent, from the same period the previous year.

Russian MoD Seeks New Military Transport Aircraft

01/21/2017

The Russian Defense Ministry is seeking to replace obsolete passenger aircraft with new Russian aircraft models after a deadly crash of the Tu-154 plane last month. The Kommersant newspaper reported Friday that Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu has ordered to analyse possibilities to substitute Tu-154, Tu-134 and Il-62M passenger aircraft with new passenger aircraft models.

Congress Produces Its Shopping List for Beefing Up the U.S. Military

01/21/2017

The Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Arizona Senator John McCain, released a paper on Tuesday calling for the Pentagon to receive a nine percent boost in defense spending next year. The plan calls for spending more than $400 billion over five years, reversing what the Senator calls "damage done to the military over the past eight years." The plan roughly mirrors defense spending increases proposed by President Elect Donald Trump.

Airbus offers C295 tanker fit after H225M test success

01/21/2017

Airbus Defence & Space has begun offering its C295W transport with an in-flight refuelling system modification, after completing a fresh series of trials with a medium rotorcraft. Conducted during December in conjunction with Airbus Helicopters, the trials involved a pair of C295s supporting H225M Caracals. This involved the use of a palletised hose-and-drogue refuelling system, deployed via the medium transport’s rear ramp.

Polish firm updates Mi-24 for Senegal

01/21/2017

Poland’s Lodz-based WZL-1 has completed the modernisation of a Mil Mi-24V attack helicopter for the Senegal air force. The secondhand rotorcraft is understood to have been acquired from a former Soviet-era operator.

ANALYSIS: Lasers and scanners illuminate F-35 ramp up

01/21/2017

As World War II raged, US Air Force Plant 4 cranked out 17 B-24 Liberators a day for the Allied forces. The Lockheed Martin plant in Ft Worth, Texas went on to be the birthplace of the F-111 Aardvark and the F-16 Fighting Falcon. Today, the dwindling F-16 line occupies a smaller facility next door known as the Falcon’s Nest, dwarfed by the colossal space, several football fields long, that is now the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter production line.

Japan, S Korea, US Conduct Military Drills to Counter N. Korea's Missile Threat

01/21/2017

Japan, South Korea and the United States are conducting military drills on January 20-22 to prepare for a potential missile launch from the territory of North Korea, media reported Friday, citing a source in the South Korean military.

China reveals chilling new 'Sharp Sword' stealth drone capable of dropping TWO TONNES of bombs on 'high-value' targets

01/20/2017

China's new 'Sharp Sword' stealth drone - which is capable of dropping TWO TONNES of bombs - has won second prize in competition. Little is known about the unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV) dubbed the "Lijian" in Mandarin - other that it is the first non- NATO aircraft of its kind and 'better' than that used by all military in the West.

Kazakhstan orders Russian Mi-35M helicopters

01/20/2017

Russia's state-owned Rostec subsidiary Russian Helicopters plans to supply Kazakhstan with four Mi-35M combat helicopters in 2018. According to the company, the sale is part of a military modernization effort for both countries, and strengthens strategic cooperation between their respective armed forces. The new rotorcraft will be used to replace Kazakhstan's aging fleet of Mi-24 helicopters.

China’s first aircraft-carrier bares its teeth

01/20/2017

FOR Admiral Wu Shengli, the commander of China’s navy since 2006, it must have been a sweet swansong to mark his imminent retirement. In November China announced that its first and only aircraft-carrier, the Liaoning, was combat ready. On December 24th its navy duly dispatched an impressive-looking carrier battle-group with three escorting destroyers, a couple of frigates, a corvette and a refuelling ship. It sailed from the northern port of Qingdao down through the Miyako Strait.

Air Force Chief Scientist: F-35 to Get Artificial Intelligence - Control Drones

01/20/2017

F-35s, F-22s and other fighter jets will soon use improved “artificial intelligence” to control nearby drone “wingmen” able to carry weapons, test enemy air defenses or perform intelligence, reconnaissance and surveillance missions in high risk areas, senior Air Force officials said.

Russia’s Stealth Fighter Starts New Test Phase

01/20/2017

Russia’s T-50 PAKFA fifth-generation stealth fighter is about to undergo flight testing by military pilots for the first time. The Russian Aerospace Forces (VKS) said on January 6 that it would take delivery this year of five of the aircraft that have been flight-tested by Sukhoi at the Gromov Flight Research Institute (LII) in Zhukovsky.

AF fighter jets practice for inauguration flyover

01/20/2017

Four Air Force fighter jets practiced for the inauguration flyover at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, Jan. 19, 2017. Two generations of fighter aircraft are scheduled to fly in a close formation during the inauguration of President-elect Donald J. Trump at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., Jan. 20, 2017.

Why the B-2 Stealth Bomber Was Used to Strike ISIS Camps in Libya

01/20/2017

Six years ago, US-backed coalition airpower tore down Libyan strongman Muammar Gaddafi's air defenses. Since then the dictator has been killed. So have a US Ambassador and three other Americans, and thousands of Libyans. Libya, in general, descended into chaos following the death of Gaddafi and the winding-down of coalition air operations over the country.

B-2 bomber hits Islamic State sites in Libya

01/20/2017

Together with the interim Libyan government, the bombers destroyed two Islamic State camps 45km southwest of Sirte, according to the air force. The two bombers launched over 100 Boeing GBU-38 Joint Direct Attack Munitions and USAF MQ-9 Reapers employed Lockheed Martin AGM-114 Hellfire missiles following the initial strike, a service spokesman says. Each B-2 has the capacity to carry 80 226kg (500lb) JDAMs or an equivalent 18,100kg payload.

Did Trump Really Bring Down Price of F-35?

01/20/2017

People with knowledge of the ongoing negotiations between the US Department of Defense and weapons-manufacturer Lockheed Martin indicated Wednesday that the average unit cost will fall below $100 million for the first time, two days before Trump takes office. The tenth order of F-35s delivered by Lockheed Martin will be the largest shipment, at 90 fighter jets, in the Joint Strike Fighter’s history.

Russia and Turkey 'in first joint air strikes on IS'

01/19/2017

IS was targeted in the suburbs of the town of al-Bab, Aleppo province, where Turkey suffered heavy casualties last month battling the group on the ground. Turkey's military was quoted by Reuters as saying Russia had carried out air strikes "in co-ordination with Turkey". Russia and Turkey back opposing sides in Syria's five-year civil war.

The F-35 Is Slowly Starting to Replace the F/A-18 (But One Big Problem Won’t Go Away)

01/19/2017

The United States Navy is pressing ahead with plans to replace the original model Boeing F/A-18A/B/C/D Hornets with the Lockheed Martin F-35C Joint Strike Fighter. Four F-35Cs are scheduled to arrive at Naval Air Station Lemoore on Jan. 25 as part of a new Fleet Replacement Squadron for the West Coast.

Rolls-Royce studies two new stall fixes for V-22 engines

01/19/2017

The US Naval Air Systems Command plans to award the maker of the AE1107C turboshaft engines a contract to complete two studies that would validate the company’s ideas for making the propulsion system safer to operate.

F-35B arrives in Japan

01/19/2017

US Marine Corps F-35B fighters made their inaugural trip to Air Station Iwakuni, Japan on 18 January, where the Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121 will operate the Lockheed Martin stealth fighter on its first operational deployment overseas.

Air Force mulls low-end fighter experiment

01/19/2017

As Textron Aviation eyes the US Air Force’s lucrative T-X trainer competition, its dual light-attack fighter and trainer Scorpion aircraft could remain in the running for a low-end fighter role in the USAF.

Israel tests updated self-protection fit for C-130J

01/19/2017

As Israel continues to receive deliveries of the US-built transport, the air force's flight test centre has been performing operational tests of new countermeasures equipment based on highly-accurate decoy flares. This work has been conducted as part of a wider activity to equip the service's C-130Js with systems to support the missions of the Israeli defence forces' depth command.

Taiwan commences F-16 upgrade programme

01/19/2017

Four aircraft were flown to the Taichung production facility of Aerospace Industry Development Corporation (AIDC), according to local media reports quoting the Taiwanese air force. The upgrade work, which was due to have started in 2016, will see the entire fleet upgraded within five years.

U.S. forces team with Turkey again to attack ISIS in Syria

01/18/2017

American warplanes and combat advisers are once again backing Turkish military units battling Islamic State fighters in northern Syria, the most tangible indication yet that months of tension between the NATO allies may be easing.

America's First Step toward Reclaiming Naval Power

01/18/2017

The Senate Armed Services Committee, under the leadership of chairman John McCain, has taken up President-elect Trump’s challenge to make America great again and rebuked President Obama in his final days in office. The committee’s white paper, “Restoring American Power: Recommendations for the FY 2018-FY 2022 Defense Budget,” was released this week.

Davis-Monthan passed over for new F-35, drone units

01/18/2017

Davis-Monthan Air Force Base has been passed over, for now, as a home to new drones or the F-35 Lightning II next-generation fighter jet. After months of study and site visits, the secretary of the Air Force announced that Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina is the preferred location to base a new MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft group.

Aircraft carriers in Asia: How they are taking shape

01/18/2017

Aircraft carriers, it seems, are all the rage nowadays in Asia. Long written off by some as bulky, oversized “cruise missile magnets,” the flattop appears to be enjoying a new lease-of-life as of late. Until quite recently, only two nations in the Asia-Pacific operated fixed-wing carriers: India with a 50-year-old-plus ex-British carrier; and Thailand with its “pocket carrier,” the Chakri Nareubet. Both vessels could only operate aging Harrier jump jets, and most of these aircraft were in fact l

The Smart and Sneaky Way Russia's Military Is Getting Stronger

01/18/2017

In a recent article for The Strategist, I showed how Russia’s economic woes are negatively affecting plans to modernize the country’s military. In order to be thrifty, Moscow has, for the most part, been investing in modernized or upgraded versions of existing platforms, rather than waiting for altogether new platforms like the Armata tank or PAK-FA fighter to enter service.

Bell-Boeing receives $138 million Osprey contract modification

01/18/2017

Bell-Boeing, a joint-venture between Boeing and Bell Helicopter, received a $138 million contract modification for additional V-22 aircraft work. The modification is a follow-up to the company's contract with the U.S. Navy initially awarded in July 2014. Under the modification, Bell-Boeing will provide engineering services for MV-22 Osprey aircraft to be sold to the government of Japan.

Taiwan Begins Massive Drills Simulating Chinese Attack

01/18/2017

In what may be a response to a recent show of force by the transit of the Chinese aircraft carrier through the Strait of Taiwan, Taipei initiated defense preparation exercises over the weekend while vowing to "enhance training 365 days a year."

Russian Defense Ministry to Withdraw More Su-24 Bombers, Medics From Syria

01/18/2017

Russia is preparing to withdraw an additional flight of Su-24 Fencer attack aircraft and personnel of a special-purpose medical team from the Hmeymim airbase in Syria after a successful conclusion of their duty, Col. Gen. Andrei Kartapolov, commander of the Russian military contingent in Syria, said Tuesday.

Russian Anti-Submarine Jets Drills Start in Far East – Defense Ministry

01/18/2017

The Russian Navy has launched anti-submarine Il-38 jets drills that involve flying for a long period of time and in adverse conditions, a spokesman for the Eastern Military District’s Pacific Fleet said Tuesday.

Russia's Su-35 Fighter Has a Key Edge over America's F-22 Stealth Raptor in Battle

01/17/2017

America’s F-22 Raptor is one of the world’s most advanced warplanes. But it has several weaknesses. For one, it’s blind in the infrared though several of its potential rivals have infrared-search-and-track sensors, effectively allowing them to scan for enemy warplanes’ heat signatures.

North Korea ramping up emergency airfield capabilities, spy satellite reveals

01/17/2017

Amidst its nuclear war threat, North Korea seems to be silently preparing for war. Since late 2015, the reclusive state under the dictatorship of Kim Jong-un is reportedly preparing its highways to be used as airstrips in emergency. This has been backed up with commercial satellite imagery, IHS Jane's Defence Weekly reported.

Texas to Receive First Air Force Reserve F-35 Fighter Wing

01/17/2017

The Lone Star State will be home to the first Air Force Reserve Wing of the new F-35A Lighting II advanced stealth fighter. The 5th generation fighter will be hosted by Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base Fort Worth.

India: 200-250 additional fighters needed in next 10 years: IAF chief

01/17/2017

The IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, said on Wednesday that an additional 200-250 fighter aircraft needed to be inducted in the next 10 years to meet operational requirements, even as he termed the disappearance of an AN-32 transport one of the “worst memories” of his career.

Italy presses ahead with AW129 attack helicopter replacement

01/17/2017

Italy has begun the process of replacing its army’s fleet of AW129 attack helicopters, signing a multi-year, €487 million ($515 million) contract with Leonardo, which will see the nation’s aerospace champion develop a successor aircraft.

Italian deal opens M-345 order book

01/17/2017

The Italian air force has taken a step towards modernising its basic trainer fleet, with Leonardo receiving a contract to produce an initial five Aermacchi M-345s. Announced on 13 January, the M-345 deal was signed with the Italian defence ministry’s National Armaments Directorate, along with a separate one linked to starting work on the country’s next-generation attack helicopter. Together, these are worth more than €500 million ($530 million), Leonardo says.

Turkish Fighter Jets Violate Greek Airspace Over Aegean Sea

01/17/2017

Two F-16s and two F-4s entered the Flight Information Region shortly before 2 p.m. (12:00 GMT) south of Lesvos. The four jets then proceeded to fly over Makronisi and Agathonisi islands, the Kathimerini newspaper reported.

Islamic State chief demotes eastern Mosul commanders over combat failures

01/16/2017

Nineveh (IraqiNews.com) Islamic State’s supreme leader has stripped group commanders in eastern Mosul of leadership due to dramatic losses to Iraqi government forces over the past two weeks, a local source has reported. A source told Alsumaria News that Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi withdrew the “emir” designation from all leaders of the extremist group in the eastern part of the city due to “delinquency and escaping” at battlefields in face of advancing Iraqi government troops.

Air Force Cyber-Protects F-22

01/16/2017

The F-22, often referred to by Air Force developers as an “aerial quarterback,” relies upon data link technology connecting to other aircraft and ground stations as more of the F-22’s technologies and avionics--such as radar warning receivers, mission data files, navigation and target mapping systems-are computer based.

McCain fires opening shot in Pentagon budget wars with buildup plan

01/16/2017

Sen. John McCain is set to propose a military buildup that would add nearly half a trillion dollars to the defense budget over the next five years and blow past current limits on Pentagon spending, according to a copy of the blueprint drafted by the chairman of the Armed Services and obtained by POLITICO.

Most Powerful Weapons Systems Used by Russia

01/16/2017

At a cost of $70 billion a year, Russia has the world’s third-largest defense budget. For that, the state boasts 845,000 troops, 22,550 tanks and 1,399 combat aircraft.

US Defense Contractors Win $138Mln to Develop V-22 Osprey Aircraft for Japan

01/16/2017

The US-based Bell-Boeing Joint Project Office won a $138 million Navy engineering contract to develop and test the V-22 Osprey for Japan. The US-based Bell-Boeing Joint Project Office (JPO) won a $138 million Navy engineering contract to develop and test the V-22 Osprey tilt rotor aircraft for Japan, the Department of Defense said in a press release.

Russia's Scary S-400 Air Defense System Is Now Protecting the Skies Above Crimea

01/15/2017

Russia is bolstering its anti-access/area-denial (A2/AD) capabilities in Crimea with the addition of the potent S-400 Triumf air and missile defense system. The addition of the S-400—which can be armed with the 250-mile range 40N6—would afford Moscow the ability not only to keep the peninsula safe from attack, but also threaten airspace deep inside Ukraine should the Kremlin choose to do so.

America's Stealth F-22 Raptor Dominates the Skies (But Does It Have a Secret Flaw?)

01/15/2017

The F-22, often referred to by Air Force developers as an “aerial quarterback,” relies upon data link technology connecting to other aircraft and ground stations as more of the F-22’s technologies and avionics--such as radar warning receivers, mission data files, navigation and target mapping systems--are computer based.

China aircraft carrier capabilities tested on latest mission

01/15/2017

China's sole aircraft carrier has returned home following a far-ranging three-week training mission during which its combat capabilities were closely scrutinized and speculation soared over what future role the flat-top will play amid China's growing military ambitions. The Defense Ministry said the 60,000-ton Liaoning sailed in to the eastern port of Qingdao on Friday along with its battle group that includes destroyers, frigates, a supply ship and anti-submarine craft.

Hatyai plane crash horror at Children’s Day air show (video)

01/15/2017

An air show for children turned to horror as a Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF) fighter jet JAS39 C Gripen crashed near the Hatyai Airport today, killing the pilot. Squadron Leader Dilokrit Pattavee, 35, died on the spot at 9.27am (local time), amidst a large plume of fire and black smoke billowing into the sky. According to the RTAF, the crash occurred during an exhibition flight in conjunction with the Children’s Day celebration.

New Fighter Aircraft Deal - Again?

01/15/2017

The ink has barely dried on the acquisition of the French Rafale fighter aircraft, and India has once again entered the international arms market with the intention to procure hundreds of fighter jets, albeit with the proviso that they be manufactured in India. The Rafale deal, for outright purchase of 36 twin-engined medium-weight multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) worth around $ 7.8 billion (Rs.50,000 crores).

China's aircraft carrier returns to port after drill

01/14/2017

China's aircraft carrier formation returned to Qingdao port Friday after finishing a drill, the Chinese navy said Friday. Comprised of aircraft carrier Liaoning, a number of destroyers, some J-15 carrier-based fighter jets and helicopters, the fleet sailed through the Bohai Sea, the Yellow Sea, the East China Sea and the South China sea.

Lockheed CEO Tells Trump F-35 Cost Will Be 'Significantly' Lower

01/14/2017

Emerging from a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump at Trump Tower in New York on Friday, Lockheed Martin Chief Executive Marillyn Hewson told reporters Friday the Bethesda-based defense giant is close to a new contract deal that would cut the cost of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter program and also create jobs.

Training in a military pilot’s sandbox

01/14/2017

The sky is deep blue and the tops of the scattered clouds below are gleaming in the sunshine. Mojo 1, a captain in the French Air Force, leads Mojo flight, a two-ship formation of Rafale 4th generation fighter aircraft, as they press toward their target on a strike mission.

Lockheed Martin’s Latest Electronic Warfare System for Helicopters to Safeguard U.S. Navy Against Anti-Ship Missile Threats

01/14/2017

Lockheed Martin will build on its 45-year legacy of integrated electronic warfare system success under a newly awarded U.S. Navy development contract to provide MH-60 helicopters with enhanced electronic warfare surveillance and countermeasure capabilities against anti-ship missile (ASM) threats.

KC-46 schedule unlikely to go as planned

01/14/2017

If past performance is any indication of future schedules, the Boeing KC-46A Pegasus tanker programme won’t go as planned, according to the Pentagon’s top weapons tester.

Hundreds of deficiencies could push F-35 tests to 2019

01/14/2017

Plagued by a delayed delivery of crucial software and shortfalls with its automated maintenance system, the Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter will begin initial operational test and evaluation more than a year after its planned August 2017 date.

Leonardo confident on securing UK Apache support work

01/14/2017

Leonardo’s UK helicopter business is confident that it can capture a slice of the sustainment work for the British Army’s fleet of 50 Boeing AH-64E Apache attack helicopters, which are due to enter service from 2022.

OPINION: How to keep a Cold War veteran flying

01/14/2017

According to an old tale, a fighter pilot who had been instructed to hold off from landing while a B-52 bomber made an approach with a defective TF33 quipped to air traffic controllers: “Oh no – the dreaded seven-engine approach”. On 4 January, this perhaps apocryphal story became reality, when the crew of an aged bomber returned to their North Dakota base minus an engine, which had disintegrated in flight.

Damascus Vows 'Repercussions' Following Israeli Attack on Syrian Airbase (VIDEO)

01/14/2017

In the early hours of Friday morning, the Syrian Army reported that Israel had carried out missile strikes targeting the Mezzeh military airport southwest of the Syrian capital of Damascus. Syrian military command has since warned Tel Aviv that it may take retaliatory measures.

A massive US weapons deal with Israel means more weapons for its Arab neighbors, too

01/13/2017

The completion of a US weapons deal with Israel worth $38 billion clears the way for two of Israel's Arab neighbors to buy US fighter jets. Qatar wants to buy 36 Boeing F-15 fighter jets. Kuwait has been waiting to buy 24 F/A-18E/F Super Hornets. “Those have been on hold for years now,” says journalist Dan De Luce, who follows defense matters for Foreign Policy.

Russia deploys more fighter jets to Syria despite announcing military scale down

01/13/2017

The Russian Defence Ministry confirmed that it has deployed new combat aircraft to Syria, despite President Vladimir Putin earlier announcing military scale down in the country. Putin ordered a withdrawal of Russian forces from Syria in December, where they had been fighting in support of the forces of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

More Rafales for India Still Likely

01/13/2017

Contrary to some previous indications, India is considering an additional 36 Dassault Rafales, a senior Ministry of Defence official said. The contract is likely to be signed in 2019 with deliveries to start by 2022, when the existing $8.8 billion order for 36 Rafales is completed, AIN has learned from sources close to the long-running procurement process. The two orders would add five squadrons of new fourth-generation fighters to the Indian Air Force (IAF).

With a shrinking fleet IAF has tough choices ahead

01/13/2017

On December 28, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, the retiring Indian Air Force chief, declared in New Delhi that the IAF requires 200 to 250 medium fighters in addition to the 36 Rafale multi-role fighters that were contracted with French vendor Dassault earlier this year.

Mattis strikes sharp contrast to Trump on F-35, nuclear weapons

01/13/2017

Donald Trump’s nominee for secretary of defense supports Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter programme, the NATO alliance and restrained use of nuclear weapons during his confirmation hearing, marking a stark departure from the president-elect.

PICTURE: Lockheed delivers 200th F-35

01/13/2017

Conventional take-off and landing aircraft AX-2 is the second of an eventual 42 F-35As to be produced for the Japan Air Self-Defence Force. The first four of these are to be built at Lockheed’s Fort Worth site in Texas, with the remainder to roll off a Mitsubishi Heavy Industries-run final assembly and check-out line in Nagoya.

Russia Must Consider Int'l Situation When Organizing Military - Defense Minister

01/13/2017

The development of Russia's military organization should take place while paying heed to international military and political conditions, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said Thursday.

Israeli jets bombed Syrian military airport near Damascus – state media

01/13/2017

Syrian state news agency SANA says Israeli jets have bombed the Mezzeh military airport west of Damascus, accusing Tel Aviv of supporting terrorism. The airport was rocked by multiple explosions, with ambulances rushing to the scene. The Syrian Arab Army has warned that there will be repercussions for Israel for the “flagrant attack” on the military base, state TV said, citing a Syrian army command spokesman. It also linked the alleged strike to Israel’s “support of terrorist groups.”

Why will F-35 make US aircraft carriers more leathal?

01/12/2017

The Marine Corps F-35B Short-Take-Off-and-Vertical-Landing Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter took off from a Navy amphibious assault ship for the first time with a full load of weapons — in preparation for its planned deployment in 2018. The aircraft flew from the Navy’s first America-Class Amphibious Assault Ship, the USS America, to Yuma Proving Grounds, Ariz., where it dropped live precision guided weapons on mock targets in the desert.

MTS-209 Selected to Support Thailand T-50 Trainer Aircraft

01/12/2017

Marvin Test Solutions’ MTS-209 Common Armament Test Set has been selected by Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) as part of the support package for a group of T-50TH aircraft purchased by the Thai Air Force in 2015 and slated for delivery in the next 24 months. The new aircraft will replace aging L-39 Albatros trainers.

F-35s Head To Japan As Chinese Bombers and Carrier Make Big Moves

01/12/2017

Marking a major milestone in its development, the long awaited operational deployment of the F-35 is underway. A group of Joint Strike Fighters from Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121, the “Green Knights,” left their home base at MCAS Yuma in Arizona on Monday, starting their hop across the Pacific to their new home at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni in Japan.

Taiwan deploys fighter jets as China enters Taiwan Strait

01/12/2017

Taiwan on Wednesday deployed fighter jets, a surveillance aircraft and Navy frigates in response to the movement of China's lone aircraft carrier into the Taiwan Straits, according to Taiwan's state-run Central New Agency. The Liaoning carrier and its flotilla of escorting frigates and destroyers were apparently on their way back to base in northeastern China from the South China Sea following training exercises, the agency reported.

A-10 Thunderbolt upgraded for Combat Search and Rescue missions

01/12/2017

The iconic A-10 Thunderbolt has a new upgrade that will give ground troops one more reason to love it: communications equipment for Combat Search and Rescue operations. Advocates of the famed “Warthog” received welcome news in October when Air Force Materiel Command announced plans to sustain the aircraft “indefinitely.”

Trump teases possible F-35 competition

01/12/2017

President-elect Donald Trump has hinted again at a potential competition between Lockheed Martin’s F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. In his first press conference since winning November’s election, Trump took aim at the entire US defense industry in his opening remarks, but focused on the F-35 programme as his favourite target.

Rafale output rose in 2016, Dassault says

01/12/2017

Dassault delivered nine newly-built Rafale fighters in 2016, according to a financial update issued by the company on 5 January. The total was in line with plans for the year, and represents an increase of one unit over the eight shipped in 2015, it adds.

Does Pakistan Have a Second Nuclear Strike Option in Place?

01/12/2017

In a public statement, Pakistan's Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) announced that the country had successfully test fired a nuclear-capable, 450-km range Babur-3 submarine-launched cruise missile (SLCM). It went on to add that the missile provides a credible second strike capability and augments deterrence.

Russia to Deliver 4 Mi-35M Attack Helicopters to Kazakhstan in 2018

01/12/2017

The Russian Helicopters will deliver four Mi-35M attack helicopters with transport capability to Kazakhstan's Defense Ministry in 2018, according to the statement of the manufacter.

RUSSIAN MIG-35 FLIGHTS WILL BEGIN IN JANUARY

01/11/2017

Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister, Dmitry Rogozin, announced that the Russian Air Force’s (VVS) Mikoyan MiG-35 will begin its test flights this January. Rogozin made the statement during a visit to one of Almaz-Antey’s subsidiaries (MKB Fakel). The MiG-35 is the latest version of the MiG-29M/M2, the current production model of the Fulcrum, which has been among the Russian aviation industry’s leading exports.

VMFA-121 DEPARTS FOR RELOCATION TO JAPAN

01/11/2017

Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 121, an F-35B squadron with 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, departed Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, Arizona, transferring to Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, Jan. 9, 2017. The first location to receive the Marine Corps' F-35B, as part of its worldwide deployment capability, is Iwakuni, Japan.

F-16 for India Air Force…Really?

01/11/2017

In 2007, MoD (Ministry of Defence) issued a tender to purchase 126 Medium Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA procurement programme). Objective of this procurement was to bridge the gap between a light fighter (MiG-21, MiG-23, MiG-27 etc and LCA Tejas) and heavy duty fighter Su-30.

Pentagon tester: F-35 needs rigorous review by Trump team

01/11/2017

The Trump administration should “rigorously and comprehensively review” Lockheed Martin Corp.’s F-35 jet, the Pentagon’s costliest program, the Defense Department’s director of combat testing said.

France Receives American Reaper Drones, Immediately Deploys Them to Niger

01/11/2017

The French military received two additional General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and has deployed them to West Africa. Toward the end of 2016 the remotely piloted aircrafts (RPA) arrived in Niamey, Niger, at Base Aérienne 101 where three other MQ-9s have been operated by Escadron de Drone (drone squadron) 1/33 Belfort since January 2015.

Beijing Sends Heavy Bomber Over Disputed South China Sea Islands

01/11/2017

Beijing leaders seized the past weekend as an opportunity to flex the People's Liberation Army’s (PLA) muscles in a region where many parties have staked competing territorial claims. Since January 1, China has flown strategic bombers over the Spratly islands on at least two occasions.

China Frequently Breached S Korean Air Defense Identification Zone in 2016

01/11/2017

Chinese military aircraft breached the Korean Air Defense Identification Zone (KADIZ) on numerous occasions last year, Seoul's Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said Tuesday. On Monday, around 10 Chinese military planes, including bombers and an early warning aircraft, entered KADIZ for several hours from 10 a.m. (01:00 GMT) to 3 p.m., prompting South Korea to counter by sending 10 F-15K and KF-16 fighter jets.

Russian Helicopters to Take Part in India's 8th Vibrant Gujarat Forum

01/11/2017

The Russian Helicopters company, part of the Rostec state corporation, is taking part in the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2017 regional investment forum in India's Gujarat state, the company said Tuesday.

U.S. Pilots See Close Calls With Russian Jets Over Syria

01/10/2017

One night this past fall, a U.S. radar plane flying a routine pattern over Syria picked up a signal from an incoming Russian fighter jet. The American crew radioed repeated warnings on a frequency universally used for distress signals. The Russian pilot didn’t respond.

U.S. Air Force Official: F-35 Could Beat Russia's Stealth PAK-FA or China's J-31 in a Fight

01/10/2017

An F-35 Joint Strike Fighter would be able to use its sensors, weapons and computer technology to destroy Russian and Chinese 5th-Generation Stealth fighters in a high-end combat fight, service officials said.

US Navy accepts 50th P-8A Poseidon aircraft at NAS Florida

01/10/2017

The US Navy’s 50th P-8A Poseidon (P-8A), the next-generation long-range maritime patrol aircraft has been delivered by Boeing at the Naval Air Station (NAS) in Jacksonville, Florida. Under the P-8A programme, the latest addition is part of a total requirement for 117 of the 737-based anti-submarine warfare jets for the US navy.

Asian Fighter Aircraft Market Looking Bullish

01/10/2017

The need for new fighter aircraft in the Asia-Pacific region is expected to remain buoyant, with simmering tensions centered on territorial disputes for resource-rich islands in the South and East China Sea being most often cited as the main driver for increased regional defense spending.

Beijing recieves first four Su-35s

01/10/2017

Beijing has taken delivery of four Sukhoi Su-35 fighter aircraft, the first installment in an acquistion that will see it acquire 24 examples. News of the jet’s arrival in China was revealed in a report state news organ China Daily.

Czech Republic, Slovakia to Jointly Protect Airspace Since Summer

01/10/2017

Czech Defense Minister Martin Stropnicky said that the air forces of the Czech Republic and Slovakia will cooperate in protection of the air space over the two countries starting from summer 2017.

Turbulence in South China Sea: India Offers Missile to Vietnam

01/10/2017

India is an old friend of Vietnam and both don't subscribe to China's claim in the South China Sea. That is the reason for raised eyebrows over India's offer to supply missiles to Vietnam.

S-400 System Regiment to Enter Service in Moscow Region on January 11

01/10/2017

The Russian Defense Ministry is expected to put a regiment of S-400 Triumf air defense system on combat duty to protect the airspace of Moscow on Wednesday, the ministry said in a statement on Monday.

Airstrikes by Russia Buttress Turkey in Battle vs. ISIS

01/09/2017

Russian warplanes have carried out airstrikes to support Turkey’s offensive in northern Syria against the Islamic State, an important evolution in a budding Russian-Turkish partnership. The deepening ties threaten to marginalize the United States in the struggle to shape Syria’s ultimate fate.

Eye in the Sky: Unmanned Aircraft Start Trials

01/09/2017

Until now, unmanned aircraft technologies have been limited to drones and other similar small devices, but that might be changing soon. The first unmanned aircraft trials have begun to determine their viability and how to incorporate these unmanned planes into UK airspace. Are the engineers at BAE Systems close to creating the Tesla autopilot of the air with their autonomous aircraft?

Arguing about whether the F-35 can dogfight misses a really big point

01/09/2017

According to some reports, America's fifth-generation stealth aircraft doesn't excel at dogfighting. But fortunately, the F-35 Lightning II is not built for dogfighting. While some analysts have argued that the air-to-air-combat capabilities of the F-35A won't match some of its peer aircraft, pilots who spoke to Business Insider pointed out that the US's fifth-generation fighter is designed in such a way that dogfighting may be an afterthought.

"Adir" in the Sky

01/09/2017

On December 12, 2016, the first two F-35A jet fighters (dubbed "Adir," a word meaning "mighty" or "awesome" in Hebrew) landed in Israel. This is a major milestone in the long process of accepting the aircraft into Israel Air Force service, a process that began in 2008, when Israel first applied for the planes.

Why Did America Stop Building the Best Fighter Jet Ever?

01/09/2017

In the late 1990s, the United States was at a post–Cold War apex as an aviation juggernaut. Not only did it have the largest fleet of combat aircraft in the world, it was also producing the only fifth-generation fighter in existence: the F-22 Raptor. By 2009, the U.S. government had turned against the fighter, and only 187 were produced. What happened to the F-22 program, and why?

Argentina Has Just 3 Years to Invade the Falklands

01/08/2017

Argentina is trying to rebuild its air force by resuming negotiations with Israel to acquire 12–14 Kfir Block 60 fighters in 2017. These are capable?—?if antiquated?—?fighters originally dating to the 1970s. But the Block 60 includes several upgrades including a modern Elta 2032 AESA radar.

America's B-52 Stratofortress (Developed in the 1950s): Dropping Bombs Until 2040?

01/08/2017

The Air Force is surging forward with a massive, fleet-wide modernization overhaul of the battle-tested, Vietnam-era B-52 bomber, an iconic airborne workhorse for the U.S. military dating back to the 1960s. Engineers are now equipping all 76 of the Air Force B-52s with digital data-links, moving-map displays, next-generation avionics, new radios and an ability to both carry more weapons internally and integrate new, high-tech weapons as they emerge, service officials said.

Air Force leaders said the F-22 Raptor multi-role stealth fighter is performing well in bombing attacks over Iraq and Syria

01/08/2017

The Air Force's stealthy F-22 Raptor is performing very well in its first ever combat missions bombing Islamic State forces over Iraq and Syria, service leaders said Sept. 15. Praising its stealthy super-cruise speeds, maneuverability and ability to help other aircraft in the U.S.-led coalition, the Commander of Air Combat Command called the F-22 an "aerial quarterback" in the ongoing bombing efforts against ISIS.

ROYAL AIR FARCE Nearly a third of RAF’s combat jets grounded by mechanical gremlins as 14 years of war take their toll

01/08/2017

One in three of the £60 million multi-role Typhoon fighters and Tornado combat jets are unfit to fly. Both planes are vital to Britain’s air defence and are on high alert preventing Russian jets from entering UK air space. The two aircraft also taking part in combat missions against ISIS in Iraq and Syria as part of Operation Shader.

Upgrade advances A-10s search capability

01/07/2017

A-10C Thunderbolt IIs assigned to active duty fighter squadrons at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base are in the process of having new lightweight airborne recovery systems installed. The LARS V-12 is designed to allow A-10 pilots to communicate more effectively with individuals on the ground such as downed pilots, pararescuemen and joint terminal attack controllers.

China’s third aircraft carrier may soon be in the pipeline

01/07/2017

China is expected to “own” a third aircraft carrier in the near future, the People’s Daily online, the flagship of the Communist Party of China (CPC) is reporting, quoting a leading naval expert. The website quoted Liang Fang, a military expert, as saying that “the Chinese military’s combat capability has grown by leaps and bounds in the past decade.”

Frontline Bengal Air Base Likely to House Rafale Squadron

01/07/2017

Frontline Indian Air Force base in Hasimara in West Bengal is likely to be one of the bases for a Rafale squadron, informed sources said on Friday. The first squadron is likely to be based at the Sarsawa base in Uttar Pradesh. One more base for the third squadron remains to be identified. Each of these IAF squadrons will have 12 Rafale fighter jets.

China will Buy no More Russian-made Jets and Other Russian Combat Aircraft

01/07/2017

Russia kept its word by delivering the first four Sukhoi Su-35S supermaneuverable air superiority fighters to China in December. The delivery was confirmed by the People's Liberation Army (PLA). The People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) is the first foreign customer for the Su-35S --and also the last. After receiving delivery of the four Sukhois, the PLAAF said it will order no more Russian-made fighters and other combat aircraft after Russia delivers the remaining 20 Su-35Ss it bought.

Sales Outlook Brightens For Boeing's F/A-18 Super Hornet Fighter

01/07/2017

When President-elect Donald J. Trump tweeted on December 22 that he had asked Boeing to price-out an alternative to the stealthy F-35 fighter based on the company's F/A-18 Super Hornet, he stunned the defense industry. Although Super Hornet is the most successful carrier-based tactical aircraft the Navy has ever operated, it has long been assumed that production would cease in the near future to make room in the budget for the next-generation F-35.

Watch: India's next Western origin fighter jet- US F-16 or Sweden's Gripen?

01/07/2017

The competition for providing India with a single engine fighter jet is now between US defence major Lockheed Martin and Swedish arms company, Saab. India has already sent requests to US and Sweden, asking for details of single engine fighter jets in service which can be offered for a technology transfer project- these are Lockheed Martin F 16 and the Saab Gripen.

Air Force Secretary: B-52 accident will not push engine upgrade

01/07/2017

The Air Force is not moving faster on an effort to re-engine the Boeing B-52, even after a TF33 dropped from a bomber during a training mission earlier this week. In her final speech in Washington 6 January, Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James said the recent accident would not give more urgency to an earlier effort to re-engine the B-52. However, James notes there remains interests in replacing the bomber’s aging Pratt & Whitney engines.

Syria conflict: Russia 'withdrawing aircraft carrier group'

01/07/2017

Russia is starting to withdraw forces from Syria and its aircraft carrier group will be the first to leave, the Russian armed forces chief says. The announcement comes days after Russia and Turkey negotiated a ceasefire in Syria which is largely holding, according to the UN.

OFFICIAL 2016 NIGERIAN BUDGET CONFIRMS JF-17 ORDER

01/06/2017

The officially sanctioned Appropriation Act for 2016 – i.e. the 2016 Nigerian Federal Budget – confirms an order for three JF-17 multi-role combat aircraft. The JF-17 is jointly produced and marketed by Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) and the Aviation Industry Corporation of China. In December, PAC announced that it handed over 70 JF-17s to the Pakistan Air Force (PAF), the platform’s sole user, currently.

Defense Sec. Ash Carter Highlights DoD Accomplishments

01/06/2017

Below is my exit memo to President Barack Obama outlining some of the many accomplishments of the Department of Defense over the past eight years, my vision for the country’s future, and the work that remains in order to achieve that vision. Each cabinet secretary has provided his or her own memo to the president as of today.

F-35 pilot: It's 'preposterous' to think an upgraded F-18 could do the F-35's job

01/06/2017

In December, Business Insider interviewed a former US Navy Commander, Chris Harmer, who had a unique idea for an alternative to the F-35. Harmer suggested that in 2001, when the F-35 program first came together, military planners simply could have updated existing airframes, like the carrier based F-18, with the advanced avionics and sensor fusion featured in the F-35.

Pivot to Asia: US Navy Deploying New Airborne Early Warning Aircraft to Japan

01/06/2017

The US Navy announced Thursday that it will deploy its leading-edge early-warning surveillance aircraft to Japan in February. The aircraft, developed by defense contractor Northrop Grumman and the latest in air defense technology, can detect missile attacks and stealth aircraft as well as coordinate other ships and aircraft during combat.

Air Force receives 4 of Russia's latest fighters

01/06/2017

The Chinese military has confirmed that it received four Russian-made Sukhoi Su-35 fighter jets in late December, but noted that the Su-35 might be the last combat plane China would import thanks to its own defense advances.

Russia and India to develop new Fifth Generation stealth fighter; but India wants export rights too

01/06/2017

Russia wants to cement its position as Indian Air Force's key supplier and give a decisive boost to Indo-Russian relationship. In view of this, India and Russia are looking to sign a design and development contract for Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA), a stealth fighter.

Purchase of new fighter aircraft: SLAF still to finalize fleet requirements

01/06/2017

The Sri Lanka Air Force (SLAF) is still in the process of finalizing its fleet requirements to purchase new multi-role combat aircraft to replace MiG and Kfir fleet. Earlier, the government had announced that it intends to purchase eight to 12 new multi-role combat aircraft for the SLAF.

B-52 bomber drops engine

01/06/2017

During a 4 January training mission from Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, the pilot declared an in-flight emergency after discovering the engine had dropped from the bomber. The mammoth Boeing aircraft, which is powered by eight Pratt & Whitney TF33 engines, landed safely without injuries to the five personnel on board, the air force says in a statement. No weapons were on board during the mission.

F-35 pilot: Here's what people don't understand about dogfighting, and how the F-35 excels at it

01/05/2017

Since 2001, Lockheed Martin and US military planners have been putting together the F-35, a new aircraft that promises to revolutionize aerial combat so thoroughly as to leave it unrecognizable to the general public. Detractors of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter have long criticized the program as taking too long and costing too much, though overruns commonly occur when developing massive, first-in-class projects like the F-35.

The year ahead: The Asia-Pacific region

01/05/2017

On 15 December the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) snatched an unmanned underwater vessel (UUV) of the US Navy (USN). This occurred just 50nm from the Philippine coast, a reminder that Beijing sees the whole of the South China Sea as its own turf, to use in an inappropriate metaphor for maritime territory.

Dogfight Over Security Of Indian Skies To Begin Anew – Analysis

01/05/2017

The dogfight over the choice of fighter jets – known as the Multi Role Combat Aircraft (MRCA) – that are to provide security for the Indian skies is beginning again, this time for a much larger number than the 2007 figure of 189 asked by the Indian Air Force (IAF), an estimated 400 for for the Indian Air Force (IAF) and 60 for and Navy.

Argentinian Kfir negotiations set to resume

01/05/2017

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has so far exported 40 Kfir Block 60 upgraded fighter aircraft, and plans to assemble and upgrade another 12-14 for Argentina.

French air force, Qinetiq confirmed as PC-21 buyers

01/05/2017

Worth more than Swfr300 million ($292 million) to the company, the orders will lead to the production of 17 aircraft for the French air force, a further two for previous buyer Jordan and two for the UK company Qinetiq, for use by the Empire Test Pilots’ School (ETPS).

General Atomics Wins Contract to Expand Spain's Fleet of Reaper Drones

01/05/2017

General Atomics has been awarded a $56 million contract for the Spain MQ-9 Exportable Block 5 Procurement program. Under the contract, the company will provide MQ-9 aircraft and its associated equipment over the next two years and the work is expected to be completed by January 31, 2019, the Defense Department added.

Russia to Sell ‘Sophisticated’ Arms To Manila After Foreign Policy U-Turn

01/05/2017

One day following the Russian Navy’s arrival in the Philippines to run regional threat-assessment drills, Russian Ambassador Igor Khovaev expressed Moscow’s enthusiasm to equip the island nation with high-tech military hardware.

Critical India-Russia Pact to Improve Fighter Aircraft Availability

01/05/2017

India and Russia are trying to correct the tardy supply of spares for fighter aircraft with a pact that would pave the way for local manufacturing of spares. This move should give further impetus to Indo-Russia defense ties.

No decision yet on competing for Air Force jet contract, Textron says

01/04/2017

The Air Force has released details on what it will be looking for in its next jet trainer, but Textron AirLand is still evaluating whether it will offer its Scorpion tactical jet in a competition to win the massive contract. On Dec. 30, the Air Force released its request for proposal on the requirements for the Advanced Pilot Training, or T-X, program.

Opinion: Improve Land-based Electronic Warfare Aircraft Readiness

01/04/2017

President-Elect Donald Trump has called for hard-hitting initiatives to be included in a first-100-day thrust to make America strong again. Hoping to be included in that effort are some common-sense, low-cost changes to our land-based expeditionary electronic warfare (EW) force posture that would immediately improve operational readiness and have a positive economic effect to boot.

Pentagon Arsenal Plane to Fly With F-35, F-22

01/04/2017

The Pentagon’s emerging “Arsenal Plane” or “flying bomb truck” is likely to be a modified, high-tech adaptation of the iconic B-52 bomber designed to fire air-to-air weapons, release swarms of mini-drones and provide additional fire-power to 5th generation stealth fighters such as the F-35 and F-22, Pentagon officials and analysts said.

J-15 fighter jets from China’s Liaoning aircraft carrier make South China Sea debut

01/04/2017

China’s aircraft carrier-based J-15 fighter jets made a high-profile debut over the South China Sea on Monday amid tensions with the United States. The J-15 “Flying Shark”, stationed on board the Liaoning, China’s sole aircraft carrier, since 2013, practised operations as the vessel sailed in heavy seas, Xinhua reported.

China's new stealth fighter FC-31 has to beat these combat jets to rule the skies

01/04/2017

On December 23, grainy videos and images of a new Chinese stealth jet fighter, Shenyang FC-31 emerged from websites belonging to Chinese military bloggers. The first flight of the FC-31 jet brings it closer to the abilities that US possesses like selling stealth jet to other countries.

Maiden flight for M-345 trainer

01/04/2017

“The aircraft conducted itself perfectly, meeting the expectations of the design parameters while showing excellent performance,” says Quirino Bucci, a test pilot for Leonardo’s aircraft division. He offered particular praise for the Williams International FJ44-4M-34 engine which “demonstrated a great capacity to react to regime changes, which is a fundamental characteristic for a basic training aircraft”.

Israel retires F-16A fleet

01/04/2017

The F-16A has been in service with the IAF since 1980, and has participated in all combat operations since then, including an attack on an Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981. In recent years older aircraft were operated mainly by the IAF's “red squadron” in an adversary training role, and the Israeli ministry of defence is now trying to sell 40 F-16As.

India Announces New Fighter Jets to Be Produced Domestically

01/04/2017

Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar said at a news conference Tuesday that New Delhi is inviting global bids for a foreign-designed single-engine fighter that would be assembled in India. According to Parrikar, a western partner for the fighter will be chosen based on pricing and terms for the transfer of the technology.

China Uses First Aircraft Carrier in South China Sea Take-Off, Landing Drills

01/04/2017

China has conducted take-off and landing drills in the South China Sea involving its sole aircraft carrier, media reported Tuesday, citing navy officials. The Liaoning aircraft carrier has been deployed in the waters of the South China Sea with missile destroyers and other vessels since Sunday, the Japanese NHK broadcaster reported.

Trump’s F-35 tweets a worrying signal for West’s air defences

01/02/2017

President-elect Donald Trump has again unleashed controversy, this time over the future of the US F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Trump recently tweeted that “based on the tremendous cost and cost overruns of the Lockheed Martin F-35, I have asked Boeing to price-out a comparable F-18 Super Hornet”, and adding: “ … about the F-35. It’s a disaster, it’s totally out of control.”

Will China Fill the Skies With Stealth Jets?

01/02/2017

China is one step closer to selling stealth jets to militaries around world, now that the latest copy of China’s newest stealth fighter has reportedly flown for the first time. The debut of FC-31 number two brings China closer to being an exporter of radar-evading warplanes—and draws the United States closer to, perhaps some day, facing Chinese-made stealth fighters in combat.

Special: Attack Missions in the A-10

01/02/2017

Known for an ability to keep flying after taking multiple rounds of enemy machine gun fire, land and operate in rugged terrain, destroy groups of enemy fighters with a 30mm cannon and unleash a wide arsenal of attack weapons, the A-10 is described by pilots as a “flying tank” in the sky -- able to hover over ground war and provide life-saving close air support in high-threat combat environments.

Today in Aviation History: First flight of the Soviet Built MiG-15

01/02/2017

On December 30, 1947 the MiG-15 fighter jet designed by Mikoyan-Gurevich for the Soviet Union (USSR) first flew. The swept wing MiG-15 was small, agile and fast making it a very formidable aircraft. The MiG-15 had a wingspan of only 33 feet, was 33 feet long and stood 12 feet tall. Comparably the United States F-86 fighter jet had a wingspan of 37 feet, was 37 feet long and height of just over 14 feet.

The Brains of the Operation

01/02/2017

In 1937, the Army Air Corps “called for a twin-engine interceptor to pursue and destroy enemy aircraft at high altitude. It also called for a maximum level-altitude flight speed of at least 360 miles per hour and the ability to reach an altitude of 20,000 feet within six minutes. These were unheard-of performance goals at that time in aviation history, and they required the design of an advanced fighter in the truest sense of that phrase.”

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