Military Aviation News Archive

Military Moves Closer to Truly Autonomous Drones

01/17/2013

Imagine a flying machine equipped with bombs and missiles, navigating the skies stealthily without human control. Soon it will be a reality: the next generation of drones. Drones currently used in combat, like the Predator or Reaper, are navigated by pilots thousands of miles away. But the latest versions of the aircraft are being designed to fly autonomously and without direct human intervention, with a pilot taking charge only when it’s time to destroy a ground target.

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Inside the F-35, the world's most futuristic fighter jet

01/17/2013

An aviation fantasy from the realms of Star Wars, the F-35 is the most sophisticated, expensive and controversial jet fighter ever produced. Jonathan Glancey takes its flight simulator for a spin.

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Egypt doubles its C295 fleet with new Airbus order

01/17/2013

The Egyptian Air Force will double its C295 transport fleet following an order with Airbus Military today for six additional aircraft bringing the fleet to a total of 12 aircraft. This third batch of aircraft plus the associated spares and support equipment, training and field support are to be delivered from the end of 2013 onwards.

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Saudi Arabia awards new Tornado engine support contract to Rolls-Royce

01/17/2013

Following agreement between the Governments of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the United Kingdom, under the Saudi British Defence Cooperation Programme, Rolls-Royce has signed a contract to provide support for engines powering the Royal Saudi Air Force fleet of Tornado combat aircraft.

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INDIA, THE A330MRTT AND EXPANDED DEFENSE OF INDIA

01/16/2013

Often, the acquisition of a new defense platform is discussed in terms of itself and the entire operational impact or strategic context is lost. This is the usual case with the most innovative air tanker solution to date, namely the A330MRTT. The A330MRTT deployed as a fleet can provide a significant deployable airborne infrastructure to support wide-ranging military and security operations.

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AgustaWestland Wins First Wildcat Export Deal With South Korea

01/16/2013

Finmeccanica SpA (FNC)’s AgustaWestland has won a first export order for the AW159 Wildcat after South Korea said it would buy eight of the helicopters to strengthen its navy’s ability to combat ships and submarines.

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U.S. Buying More Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) Rockets After Successful Use In Afghanistan

01/16/2013

As a result of its continued success in theater, the U.S. Navy is buying more BAE Systems Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System (APKWS) rockets. The company recently signed a $28 million full-rate production contract with options to produce more APKWS rockets for the Navy. The latest award increases the total full-rate production contract value to $69 million and extends production through 2014.

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Cyber War Stakes Rising

01/16/2013

U.S. intelligence officials have warned as nation-sponsored cyber warfare goes mainstream this year, attacks on U.S. installations and institutions could result not just in damage and theft but in fatalities. They believe fatalities could occur and “that is the best estimate at this point,” said the former senior intelligence official.

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Dozens Killed as Explosions Hit Syrian University

01/16/2013

At least two deadly explosions, possibly caused by airstrikes or bombs, devastated the campus of Aleppo University in Syria on Tuesday as students were taking exams, a major escalation of the violent struggle for control of the country’s largest city. The opposition and the government blamed each other for the blasts, among the worst since the Syrian conflict began nearly two years ago.

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Belgium to send support craft to Mali

01/16/2013

The Belgian government on Tuesday decided to deploy two C-130 Hercules transport aeroplanes and two rescue helicopters to support France's military intervention in Mali, Defence Minister Pieter De Crem told the Belga news agency. An assessment will be carried out in late February or early March to determine how long Belgium's involvement should last, De Crem said following a cabinet meeting in Brussels.

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France pushes on with Mali air strikes

01/16/2013

France has continued to launch air strikes against Islamist rebels in Mali as plans to deploy African troops gathered pace on Tuesday. Residents of the besieged town of Diabaly sought shelter inside their homes after a night of bombing aimed at dislodging the insurgents who seized the town on Monday. Local people told journalists they had heard explosions throughout the night, coming from the direction of the garrison town's military camp.

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Japan, US fighter planes in joint drill–official

01/16/2013

US and Japanese fighter jets on Tuesday carried out joint air exercises, an official said, days after Chinese and Japanese military planes shadowed each other near disputed islands in the East China Sea. The five-day exercise, off the southwest of the archipelago, involves six US FA-18 fighters and around 90 American personnel, along with four Japanese F-4 jets and an unspecified number of people, the official said.

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Russia Pledges $1 Bln Arms Loan to Bangladesh

01/16/2013

Russia will issue a $1 billion loan to Bangladesh for purchases of Russian-made arms and military equipment, Russian President Vladimir Putin said after talks with Bangladesh's Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday. “Russia…will allocate a $1 billion loan to Bangladesh for purchases of Russian arms and military equipment,” Putin said.

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ST Aerospace secures C130 contract from Royal Air Force of Oman

01/16/2013

ST Aerospace has announced that it has secured a contract to provide the Royal Air Force of Oman (RAFO) with a full scale maintenance and modernisation solution for three of its C130 Hercules aircraft. ST Aerospace will undertake both modernisation and maintenance work at its facility in Paya Lebar, Singapore.

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US military preparing to support French forces in Mali

01/15/2013

The Pentagon is preparing to provide military support to French forces in their new fight against rebel militants in northern Mali, according to senior defense officials. The U.S. is considering a range of options to help, including sending cargo aircrafts to lift more French ground troops into Mali, providing air refueling tankers for French air combat patrols, and offering intelligence gleaned from aerial surveillance.

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SAAB eager to engage Indian markets despite MMRCA setback

01/15/2013

The global aerospace and defence company SAAB had organised a unique contest during Aero-India 2011, which had allowed the winning contestant the privilege of co-piloting the Gripen, Sweden’s newest multi-role jet fighter.

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Report: Lightning a threat to F-35

01/15/2013

Despite undergoing regular test flights, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, called the Lightning II, remains vulnerable to its namesake — lightning. Additionally, attempts to lighten the JSF by 11 pounds may have left the fifth-generation stealth fighter more vulnerable than the aircraft it will replace.

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Technical issues delay Turkish F-35 order

01/15/2013

Turkey has decided to delay the purchase of its first two Lockheed Martin F-35s by one year, citing technical factors and a "high cost yield". The Turkish government approved an initial two-aircraft purchase on 5 January 2012, before launching talks with Lockheed to finalise a deal. However, an order for the pair has been put on hold because the technical capabilities of the aircraft are "not at the desired level yet", the nation's Undersecretary of Defence Industries procurement agency says.

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Cameron boasts about offering Britain's best plane to help French

01/15/2013

David Cameron today boasted that he had offered Britain's 'most advanced' transport plane to hep France in fighting Al Qaeda-linked militants in Mali, moments before the aircraft broke down. The Prime Minister ruled out 'army boots' on the ground but insisted it was in Britain's interests to provide two RAF C-17 Globemaster cargo planes - 'our most advanced and capable transport planes' - to the French forces.

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Colombia to buy more military airplanes

01/15/2013

Colombia announced Monday the purchase of another C295 airplane, intended for troop transport and humanitarian aid. Airbus Military, a Madrid-based subsidiary of Airbus, said the Colombian government had placed an order of six C295 transport planes, up from five a year ago, intended for the Colombian Air Force.

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Obama says U.S. warplanes involved in Somali rescue mission

01/15/2013

U.S. military fighter jets provided backup support to a failed French hostage rescue mission in Somalia, the White House announced Sunday in a rare public acknowledgment of American combat operations in the Horn of Africa. In a letter to Congress, President Obama said U.S. combat aircraft “provided limited technical support” to French forces late Friday as they attempted to rescue a French spy who had been held captive for more than three years.

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Mali conflict: militants killed as French air strikes pound rebel camps

01/15/2013

Islamist militants are fleeing major towns in northern Mali after two days of air strikes by French troops, which sources say have left scores of rebels dead. French fighter jets have pounded insurgent training camps, arms and oil depots as the French defence ministry confirmed reports of Islamist deaths, together with at least 11 civilians including three children.

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Canadian military plane leaves Tuesday to help France with Mali mission

01/15/2013

A Royal Canadian Air Force heavy lift transport will depart for France Tuesday morning to assist Mali’s effort against Islamist rebels in west Africa. The C-17 plane is expected to take off from Canadian Forces Base Trenton at 8 am (ET). It will be used to assist the French in transporting equipment into Bamako, the capital of Mali. About 35 Canadian Forces personnel, such as flight crew staff, will accompany the plane.

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Official Stripped of Real Estate over MiG Airframe Fraud

01/15/2013

A district court in Russia’s Nizhny Novgorod Region has ordered the seizure of real estate from a former official found guilty of fraud involving fighter jets for Syria, according to the court’s website. Andrei Silyakov’s land plot and house qualified for confiscation because he had other places to live, the Vachsky court said on Friday without specifying the property’s value.

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The Birth of a New UAV Mission

01/14/2013

UAVs perform the most extensive and diversified range of missions in the aerial world. The most familiar and most frequent ones are visual intelligence missions. However, UAVs also perform many other military missions, such as escorting and monitoring operations of other elements, providing auxiliary infrastructure, scanning routes, spotting IEDs and providing communication relays. US forces even use UAVs for air strike missions.

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