September, 2021 Military Aviation News

British, Italian F-35s to get new missile types

09/17/2021

MBDA and BAE Systems have secured additional funding from the British and Italian governments to complete integration of key weapon systems destined to add capability to their F-35 combat jet fleets, the companies announced Sept 17. The cash injection will see MBDA’s SPEAR precision surface attack missile and Meteor air-to-air weapon integrated on the aircraft.

The U.S. Air Force’s Next Tanker Must Be Small, Stealthy And Robotic

09/17/2021

The U.S. Air Force has a tanker problem. Just one thing can solve it. A drone. A small, stealthy drone. It’s increasingly clear service leaders understand this. But they’re in no rush to do anything about it. The problem is obvious. In the Asia-Pacific region, the U.S. military flies most of its warplanes from just a handful of big bases. And those bases—namely, Kadena in Okinawa and Andersen in Guam—are many hundreds, or even thousands, of miles from likely combat zones over the China and Phi

Strategic Analysis: Bangladesh Air Force reaches for the skies

09/17/2021

No matter what happens after much drama, tension, and delay -- it is assured that one of the finest multirole combat aircraft in the world; either the Eurofighter Typhoon or Dassault Rafale is arriving to defend the skies of Bangladesh.

China bolstering presence in South China Sea — US think tank

09/17/2021

China’s deployment of radar, anti-ship and anti-air missile platforms, and combat aircraft to outposts in the South China Sea has greatly expanded its ability to project power in waters far from its coast, according to a US think tank. “This feature will illustrate how these three capabilities are fundamentally linked, and how China’s aircraft carriers can take advantage of them to comfortably conduct operations at greater distances,” the Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative (AMTI) said Wednes

Red Tails support Afghanistan noncombatant evacuation operation

09/17/2021

Airmen with the 332nd AEW continue to return to base following various forward deployments in support of the Afghanistan noncombatant evacuation operation. Overall, more than 100 332nd AEW personnel forward deployed to Afghanistan and various bases in the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility to assist in operations.

Turkish Aerospace to use twin technology for 5th-gen fighter jet

09/17/2021

Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) has started working with digital twin technology for the design and production of the National Combat Aircraft (MMU), Turkey’s long-awaited 5th generation fighter jet due to leave the hangar on March 18, 2023.

F-117 stealth fighter jets, once considered top-secret, touch down in Fresno. Here’s why

09/17/2021

Somewhere in the California skies, a real-life scenario similar to scenes from the movie classic “Top Gun” has been playing out this week. And those planes in mock combat have been taking off out of Fresno. A pair of F-117 fighter jets arrived in town Monday for aerial combat training against the F-15 planes based out of the 144th Fighter Wing, the military airbase located next to Fresno Yosemite International Airport.

Japan could become partner nation on UK-led future fighter effort, says program director

09/16/2021

Japan could be the next partner nation for the trinational, British-led next-generation fighter program, an official hinted at the DSEI arms trade show in London. The United Kingdom, Sweden, and Italy are jointly developing cutting-edge technologies to feed into the Future Combat Air System effort. The FCAS is to eventually lead to a core fighter aircraft and a raft of new capabilities alongside it by 2035.

Taiwan Air Force Expels China Warplanes During Anti-landing Drills

09/16/2021

Taiwan said it intercepted a fleet of nine military aircraft that took off from coastal China and flew sorties near the island on Wednesday, as the Taiwanese armed forces conducted anti-landing drills as part of their largest annual exercise.

Philippines Responds to Chinese Territorial Waters Claims

09/15/2021

The United States may not be the only power to utterly and completely disregard Beijing's claims to the near entirety of the South China Sea. Just last month, China announced that it would demand that all "foreign ships" report their course, call signs, and cargo before entering what Beijing has said are its territorial waters.

(PHOTOS) AIR FORCE RESERVE COMMAND LANDS C-130 SUPER HERCULES AIRCRAFT ON WYOMING HIGHWAY DURING TRAINING EXERCISE

09/15/2021

Air Force Reserve Command kicked off a week-long exercise, Rally in the Rockies 2021, by landing a C-130J Super Hercules aircraft on the highway near Rawlins, Wyoming on September 13, according to a release from the Defense Visual Information Distribution Services (DVIDS). Military officials say that the highway closed early in the morning to ensure the aircrew could safely practice recovering personnel without access to a runway within simulated enemy territory.

Why Nothing Can Replace Large-Deck, Nuclear-Powered Aircraft Carriers In U.S. Strategy

09/15/2021

On the day that America observed the 20th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, its most potent tool for responding to future such assaults was operating near the places they are most likely to originate. The USS Ronald Reagan, hosting 90 strike fighters and other combat aircraft, was underway in the North Arabian Sea, near the mouth of the Persian Gulf and within easy reach of Afghanistan.

British firm behind the NEW Red Arrows: Suffolk company is set strike a deal to develop replacement Hawk T1s amid fears over safety of 1974 aircraft

09/13/2021

A British firm is set to strike a deal that will see it design and develop a replacement for the Red Arrows' aircrafts. Suffolk-based Aeralis was given £200,000 by the RAF to develop a new aircraft that could be converted from basic trainer to aggressive fighter by swapping engines and wings earlier this year.

Han Kuang military war games are to begin today

09/13/2021

The Han Kuang exercises, the nation’s major war games, are to start today and run for five days. The drills are to include a military aircraft emergency takeoff and landing exercise on a regular roadway on Wednesday, featuring all three fighter jet models in Taiwan’s fleet, a military source said last week.

Russia’s Fifth-Generation Checkmate Fighter: One Month Later

09/13/2021

Russian aircraft manufacturer Sukhoi, a subsidiary of industrial conglomerate Rostec, introduced a new fighter, dubbed “Checkmate,” at the 2021 edition of the biennial Russian MAKS Airshow. The reveal followed what is perhaps the most sophisticated mass-marketing campaign of any Russian military hardware product, replete with multiple teasers and promotional videos, slick chess iconography, a dedicated splash page with a countdown timer, and a healthy dose of Twitter trolling.

France confirms deal with Greece for six more Rafale fighter jets

09/13/2021

"Excellent news: Greece has just announced its intention to acquire six additional Rafales. Together, we are working to build true European autonomy," French Defence Minister Florence Parly tweeted. Greece was the first European country to buy the combat jets made by Dassault Aviation.

Meet One Of World’s ‘Weakest Air Forces’ That Boasts Rafale, Typhoon, F-15EX Jets & Now Eying F-35 Stealth Fighters

09/13/2021

A Middle-East nation, amid regional tensions, is spearheading massive modernization efforts to replace its aging Mirage 2000 fighter fleet. Billions of dollars have been invested in a bid to procure 96 super-sophisticated aircraft. The US, the UK, and France are the key recipients of these contracts. One of the richest nations in the world is now interested to acquire F-35s from the US after signing deals to acquire Dassault Rafales, Eurofighter Typhoons, Boeing F-15EX.

RSAF scrambled F16 fighter jets on Saturday in response to potential air threat

09/12/2021

F-16 fighter jets from the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) were scrambled in response to a potential air threat on Saturday morning (Sept 11). A spokesman for the Ministry of Defence said: "After ensuring that our security was not compromised, we stood down our aircraft." Mindef added that on average, RSAF fighter aircraft are deployed to investigate and deal with 350 potential air threats each year.

Why China is unleashing ?air assaults on Taiwan and Japan

09/12/2021

On Sunday, Taiwan accused China of sending 19 strike fighters, four strategic bombers and one surveillance aircraft into its air defence zone. Since 2013, it’s launched more than 4400 flights to test the defences of its least compliant neighbours. Why? International affairs analysts say they’ve uncovered a pattern.

GLOBAL WAR ON TERROR CHANGED NATIONAL GUARD “FOREVER”

09/12/2021

Col. Todd Nehls of the Wisconsin Army National Guard had just completed a year-long tour of duty for the National Guard Bureau, to be the Wisconsin National Guard’s subject matter expert on terrorism, shortly before the Sept. 11 terror attacks. “I was in disbelief,” Nehls said when he learned that terrorists had flown passenger jetliners into both World Trade Center towers. “Though this was a scenario talked about for years, few listed it as probable.”

Russia’s Su-30SM Fighter Jets Arrive in Belarus To Patrol Borders

09/11/2021

Russia’s Su-30SM multi-role fighter jets arrived in Belarus to form a joint military training center for the two countries’ air forces and air defense, the Belarusian defense ministry reported on Wednesday. The aircraft landed at the Baranovichi airfield in the Brest region, 94 kilometers away from Hrodna, which homes the training center. The aviators are supposed to carry out joint combat duty to guard and patrol the borders of the supranational Union State.

Indonesia orders five C-130J aircraft from Lockheed

09/10/2021

Indonesia has quietly signed a contract with Lockheed Martin for C-130J Super Hercules transport aircraft, multiple sources have told Defense News. Photos taken during the Indonesian Air Force chief’s visit to the aircraft’s production line suggests construction on the first aircraft is underway. The government and industry sources told Defense News that Indonesia will acquire five C-130Js under a Direct Commercial Sales contract.

Another Japan-based F-35 squadron is ready for operations

09/10/2021

A second U.S. Marine Corps squadron in Japan has declared its F-35B fighters are ready for operations, less than a year after officially kicking off the process of transitioning to the stealthy fifth-generation aircraft. The 1st Marine Aircraft Wing announced Thursday that Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 242 attained initial operational capability with the Lockheed Martin-made jet, 10 months after transitioning away from the Boeing-made F/A-18D Hornet.

KC-135 Stratotanker: A Gas Station In The Skies

09/10/2021

During Red Flag Alaska 21-3, fighter jets complete multiple sorties, practice tactical maneuvers, and multi-squadron simulated combat objectives. Spending numerous hours in the air at a time requires a hefty load of fuel to keep them airborne. How are fighter jets able to stay in the air for prolonged periods? It’s in large part because of the KC-135 Stratotanker, which acts as a gas station in the sky, allowing jets to refuel midflight without the need to touch back down.

F-35B Stealth Fighters and Amphibious Assault Ship: The Ultimate Combo?

09/10/2021

The U.S. Navy’s second new America-class Amphibious Assault Ship, which can carry F-35B Joint Strike Fighters, is now making great progress toward deployment and operational service with the completion of the Final Contract Trials (FTC).

US aircraft carrier, destroyer busy in South China Sea despite Beijing’s new notification law

09/09/2021

A Navy aircraft carrier strike group and a destroyer steamed separately through the South China Sea on Wednesday, just days after China imposed a law requiring foreign vessels to give notice before entering waters claimed by Beijing. The guided-missile destroyer USS Benfold “asserted navigation rights and freedoms” within 12 nautical miles of Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands, according to a 7th Fleet news release Wednesday.

CCS clears purchase of 56 C-295 medium transport aircraft

09/09/2021

India’s Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) on Wednesday cleared the much-delayed purchase of 56 C-295 medium transport aircraft to replace the Indian Air Force’s ageing fleet of Avro-748 planes, the defence ministry announced on Wednesday. The deal is expected to be worth $2.5 billion.

JBLE members participate in Red Flag Alaska 21-3

09/09/2021

Members of the 1st Fighter Wing and 192nd Wing from Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia, participated in Red Flag Alaska 21-3 at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, from Aug. 12 - 27, 2021. Red Flag-Alaska 21-3 is a large-scale exercise meant to simulate a real-world combat scenario, hosted by Pacific Air Forces and conducted over the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex.

Looking at procuring 350 aircraft over the next two decades: IAF chief

09/09/2021

The Indian Air Force (IAF) would procure 350 more aircraft over the next two decades, including a fleet of Tejas light combat aircraft (LCA), said IAF chief, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, on Wednesday. All efforts, he added, would be made to procure combat aircraft from indigenous sources.

Turkey open to foreign participation in national combat aircraft project

09/09/2021

Turkey is open to foreign cooperation in jointly manufacturing its defence industry projects such as its planned 3rd generation national combat aircraft, Ismail Demir, the head of Turkish Defence Industries Directorate (SSB) said. Turkey can negotiate with those who want to participate under its own terms, Demir told state-run broadcaster TRT on Monday.

Air Force special operations’ next big battlefield

09/08/2021

There’s a war going on and, like it or not, you’ve already been drafted into it. But there’s no battlefield, no explosions, and no uniforms in this fight. Instead, it’s unfolding in Reddit threads, Facebook comments, and other social media forums where people swap information and, unwittingly or not, disinformation.

New US Air Force study asks: What’s the right number of F-35s?

09/08/2021

A new tactical aircraft study underway could make certain what has until now been a suspicion: The U.S. Air Force is unlikely to purchase all of the 1,763 F-35A jets in its program of record. The service is undertaking the study as it readies its fiscal 2023 budget and grapples with reducing the types of fighters it flies from seven to four main platforms by 2030, as prescribed by the service’s chief of staff.

Taiwan warplanes to take part in highway landing drill: source

09/07/2021

A scheduled military aircraft emergency takeoff and landing drill on a regular roadway will take place early in the morning on Sept. 15 and feature all three models of fighter jets in Taiwan's fleet, a military source told CNA on Monday. The drill will begin at 6:30 a.m. on a 3-kilometer section of Provincial Highway No. 1 near Jiadong and Fangliao in Pingtung County, and feature an Indigenous Defensive Fighter (IDF), an F-16V, a Mirage 2000-5, and a E-2K airborne early warning aircraft, the sou

Taiwan says 19 Chinese warplanes entered air defence zone

09/07/2021

The defence ministry said 19 aircraft including fighters and nuclear-capable bombers entered its so-called air defence identification zone (ADIZ). Taipei has been complaining for more than a year about repeated missions by China's air force near the island. China sees democratic Taiwan as a breakaway province, but Taiwan sees itself as a sovereign state.

Four questions with the head of Air Combat Command

09/07/2021

U.S. Air Force Gen. Mark Kelly, who leads Air Combat Command, wishes he could tell the public more about the service’s secretive sixth-generation fighter program, Next Generation Air Dominance. Last September, the Air Force disclosed that a full-scale NGAD demonstrator had already flown, signaling that the program is further along than most outside aerospace analysts predicted.

South China Sea showdown continues as world pushes back against Beijing

09/06/2021

Satellite photos expose a showdown brewing in the South China Sea. Against all assurances, Beijing has armed its artificial island fortresses with aircraft and warships. Now the world is pushing back. Beijing said it guaranteed free and open access to the South China Sea’s shipping lanes. Beijing said it would never militarise the region. But that’s all changed.

China sends nuclear bombers into Taiwan's airspace as fears of war intensify

09/06/2021

The Chinese-claimed island dispatched combat aircrafts to warn away the Chinese advances, as well as monitoring them with missile systems, according to the defence ministry. The ministry reported ten J-16 and four Su-30 fighters, along with an anti-submarine aircraft. Reportedly four H-6 bombers, which can carry nuclear weapons, were also among the Chinese aircraft. Taiwan reported the latest incursion into its airspace on Sunday.

Russian Heavyweight MiG-35 To Compete With India’s HAL Tejas, Pak’s JF-17 For Malaysian Fighter Jet Contract

09/06/2021

India is pitching its HAL Tejas light combat aircraft to the Southeast Asian country. “The Russian side is considering the possibility of Rosoboronexport’s [Russia’s state arms exporter] participation with MiG-35 in the Malaysian Air Force tender for the supply of training and light combat aircraft.

Taiwan scrambles jets in response to renewed Chinese military activity

09/06/2021

Taiwan's air force scrambled on Sunday against renewed Chinese military activity, with its defence ministry reporting that 19 aircraft including nuclear-capable bombers had flown into Taiwan's air defence identification zone. Chinese-claimed Taiwan has complained for a year or more of repeated missions by China's air force near the self-ruled island, often in the southwestern part of its air defence zone near the Taiwan-controlled Pratas Islands.

PAF jets intercept unknown aircraft entering Philippine airspace

09/05/2021

Two Philippine Air Force (PAF) jets scrambled to intercept an unidentified foreign aircraft spotted flying toward the country’s airspace last Thursday. In a statement, the PAF said it deployed two FA-50 aircraft to intercept the unknown aircraft, which was detected flying about 120 nautical miles northwest of Bolinao, Pangasinan.

Navy Ends Search for 5 Missing After Helicopter Crash; Sailors Presumed Lost at Sea

09/05/2021

Five sailors missing after a helicopter went into the sea after crashing on the deck of an aircraft carrier on Monday are now presumed dead, U.S. 3rd Fleet said today. The MH-60S was on the deck of USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) when an unspecified mishap caused the helicopter to fall into the Pacific about 60 miles off the coast of San Diego, Calif., on Aug. 31 at 4:30 p.m. local time.

Why the F-35B Stealth Fighter Is Revolutionary

09/05/2021

One of the lesser-known Lightning II variants, the F-35B is nonetheless slated to become a core pillar of the Marine Corps’ ability to project power. Although commonly referred to in the singular, Lockheed Martin’s fifth-generation F-35 stealth fighter is technically three different planes: the F-35A conventional take-off and landing (CTOL) variant that is being procured by the US Air Force (USAF) to phase out the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the F-35B short takeoff and vertical landing (STOVL) varian

Iranian Drone Power: How Tehran Uses Armed Drones Across the Middle East

09/05/2021

The Liberian-flagged tanker Mercer Street was transiting through the Gulf of Oman on July 29, bound for the United Arab Emirates, when it was attacked by two delta-winged drones packed full of explosives. The startled crew issued several distress calls. But before help could arrive, a third drone slammed into the pilothouse early in the morning of July 30. The explosion ripping a six-foot-hole in the vessel and killing the ship’s Romanian captain and his British bodyguard.

Photos: Riding aboard the Navy's new littoral combat ship

09/05/2021

The U.S. Navy has just unveiled one of its latest ships: the Kansas City LCS 22, an Independence-Class Littoral, in San Diego. It is one of the most nimble ships the Navy has ever created. It's also controversial, with critics calling out its troubled history and saying it breaks down too easily. As recently as 2018, and after billions of dollars in investment, it wasn't clear the Littoral Combat Ship program had much of a future at all.

UAE and Egypt engage in joint military marine exercise

09/04/2021

The UAE and Egyptian navies have embarked on a 10-day joint marine drill in Emirati waters as part of the countries' Zayed 3 military exercise programme. Zayed 3 was launched in May, and has also featured land and air elements. It is the third such joint exercise between the UAE and Egypt since 2014.

Baltic Fleet aircraft hammer enemy with precision strikes in western Russia drills

09/04/2021

The crews of Su-24 bombers and Su-30SM multirole fighters of the Baltic Fleet’s naval aviation delivered precision bombing strikes from an altitude of 2,000-meters against targets that simulated a notional enemy’s command posts, manpower and combat hardware during drills in the Kaliningrad Region, the Fleet’s press office reported on Friday.

No foreign requests for Russia’s cutting-edge Checkmate fighter yet — defense official

09/04/2021

No requests have come from foreign states yet for the purchase of Russia’s most advanced Checkmate light tactical fighter jet, Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation Dmitry Shugayev said on the sidelines of the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) on Friday. "No," he said in response to a corresponding question.

South Korea's new aircraft carrier could look like a mini HMS Queen Elizabeth

09/04/2021

South Korea's planned aircraft carrier could have a distinctly British flavor. In fact, it could be a mini version of the Queen Elizabeth. Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) this week signed a memorandum of understanding with top British defense contractor, Babcock International, to work together to design and build the new CVX, South Korea's light aircraft carrier.

Panjshir - the valley trying to hold off the Taliban

09/03/2021

Senior Taliban leader Amir Khan Motaqi has called on the residents of the Panjshir Valley to lay down their weapons, but there is little sign of them complying. Dozens of Taliban fighters are said to have been killed in skirmishes along its borders since 15 August, when Kabul fell, and fighting is continuing.

Former Special Forces Personnel Stay Behind Enemy Lines, Keep Evacuation Mission Going in Afghanistan

09/03/2021

Even though the Biden administration has stopped its efforts to evacuate people from Afghanistan, private citizens are working around the clock to rescue those who have been left behind. The group Ark Salus intends to rescue Afghans who helped the U.S. military during nearly two decades of war.

Philippine military aircraft crashed after 'unrecoverable stall': armed forces

09/03/2021

A Philippine aircraft carrying soldiers crashed in July after an "unrecoverable stall", killing more than 50 people in one of the country's worst military air disasters, the armed forces said Thursday. The C-130 Hercules transport plane was loaded with nearly a hundred people, most of them fresh army graduates, when it overshot the runway while trying to land on the southern island of Jolo in Sulu province.

Taliban seeking to expand capabilities with US weaponry

09/03/2021

U.S. troops destroyed or disabled nearly 100 combat vehicles and dozens of aircraft before vacating the airport in Kabul on Monday, in a last-ditch bid to deprive the Taliban of the use of some American military equipment.

Pentagon says military aircraft left at Kabul airport was disabled

09/01/2021

Hours after the U.S. Military officially withdrew from Afghanistan Monday, video surfaced of Taliban fighters celebrating at Kabul’s airport. The militants can be seen sitting inside cockpits of airplanes and helicopters the U.S. provided to the Afghan Air Force. While U.S. forces were able to get some of the equipment out of the country, much of it was abandoned. The Pentagon says troops disabled the gear before they left Afghanistan.

Reshaping ANZUS for a new strategic age

09/01/2021

It’s a rare thing for an alliance to last as long as the ANZUS Treaty, signed 70 years ago today. A Brookings Institution study in 2010 reviewed 63 major alliances over the past 500 years and found only 10 lasted more than 40 years. These included NATO, ANZUS and the US–Japan treaty.

Nigerian air force Super Tucanos ready to fight against ISIS, with US Air Force training

09/01/2021

The Nigerian air force has about a squadron worth of light attack aircraft — their pilots and maintainers trained by U.S. Air Force personnel — to fight terrorists in the African nation. U.S. Africa Command noted the induction ceremony for the A-29 Super Tucano, a turboprop light attack aircraft, in an Aug. 31 release.

US, Australian forces strengthen coalition air dominance in Red Flag-Alaska 21-3

09/01/2021

Red Flag-Alaska 21-3 concluded at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson Aug. 27, strengthening interoperability and showcasing air dominance in the Indo-Pacific region. RF-A is a Pacific Air Forces-sponsored multinational exercise that provides a simulated combat environment through a series of large force employment training, close air support, and joint offensive counter-air exercises.

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