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The U.S. Air Force awarded Lockheed Martin Aeronautics a contract worth over US$1.2 Billion for the upgrading of 134 South Korean F-16 fighters. The contract for the ROKAF upgrade is a foreign military sales contract issued by the U.S. Air Force.
With progress made with the fabrication of the first flight demonstrator of the Tactically Exploited Reconnaissance Node (TERN) program DARPA has funded a second TERN technology demonstrator. Tern is currently scheduled to start integrated propulsion system testing in the first part of 2017, move to ground-based testing in early 2018, and culminate in a series of at-sea flight tests in late 2018.
Following extensive testing in the laboratory and in the field, Laser Detect System (LDS) Ltd. is unveiling SpectroDrone – the world’s first drone-based explosive detection sensor. SpectroDrone employs LDS’s patented standoff gated laser spectroscopy techniques, proven to detect a wide range of explosive and hazardous materials at distances of several meters.
Lockheed Martin has successfully launched today the WorldView-4 commercial remote sensing spacecraft for DigitalGlobe, Inc. The satellite orbits Earth every 90 minutes, traveling 17,000 miles per hour, providing the world's highest-resolution 30 cm commercial satellite imagery, capturing as much as 680,000 square kilometers of the Earth's surface daily.
General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA‑ASI), successfully performed the first flight of the Avenger Extended Range (Avenger ER) remotely piloted aircraft (RPA). With wingspan increased to 76 feet and 2,200 pounds of additional fuel, the ER extends the legacy Avenger’s endurance from 15 hours to 20 hours.
Aurora Flight Sciences will integrate the Tactical Autonomous Aerial Logistics System (TALOS) on a UH-1H helicopter for capability demonstration to the US Navy and Marine Corps, flight demonstrations of the unmanned, autonomous Huey are planned in 2017-2018.
Israel's Ministry of Defense (IMOD) plans to continue the acquisition of Trophy active protection systems (APS), to equip every new Merkava 4 tank and Namer Heavy Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) with active protection, providing significant additional protection for every tank and APC.
The Pentagon is harnessing its strategic missile warning system to conduct surveillance on a global scale, improving strategic situational awareness over the entire planet. A new Battlespace Awareness Center (OBA) that came online last month processes massive streams of satellite infrared immagery, generating Overhead Persistent Infrared (OPIR) that turns the pentagon's 'Space-Based Infra-Red Systems' (SBIRS) into an all-seeing, unblinking eye.
Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) are currently tested with Airborne Infrared (ABIR) sensors – performing persistent, forward pickets to spot hostile missile launches and track them through their flight trajectory. These missions will soon evolve as RPAs become operational, and augment existing radar and space-based sensors, providing midcourse tracking and target discrimination, to help targeting ground and ship-based missile defense interceptors. In the next phase MDA will equip even larger unmanned platforms with high-power laser systems, to perform boost-phase intercept. The agency plans to demonstrate such systems in 2021.
Almost 50 unmanned systems from the UK, USA, Sweden, Germany, France, Italy, and Austria participated in a month-long war game for robots, organized by the Royal Navy. Spanning air, surface and the undersea domain, ‘Unmanned Warrior 2016’ (UW16), has been in the making for almost two years, with dozens of players from different nations invited to take part in this unique operational demonstration, held as part of NATO’s Joint Warrior exercise.
The French ship builder DCNS presented today the [email protected] frigate design - a new 4,000 tonne frigate based on the French-Navy future Intermediate-Size Frigate (FTI) also developed by DCNS.
Two J-20 stealth fighters seen yesterday in Chengdo, China show a new camouflage paint that is likely to be used with the Low Rate Inintal Production (LRIP) batch currently being delivered from the assembly plant in Chengdu. These photos aired today on Chinese websites and twitter.
Updated post, originally published on March 3, 2016: The Russian navy is deploying its single aircraft carrier, Admiral Kuznetsov, to head the Russian flotilla in the Mediterranean Sea. It will be the first combat operation for a Russian or Soviet aircraft carrier.
A US Navy guided missile destroyer launched a salvo of Tomahawk cruise missiles against three Yemeni radar sites along the red sea shoreline, in response to recent attacks on U.S. ships in the region.