Newscast: December 15, 2006

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F-35 Program Partners Affirm Continued Support

Anticipating the first flight of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, members of the multinational program have reinstated their support of the program by committing to the nest phases of development. Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia have “re-enlisted” for the program, committing to the project’s production, sustainment and follow-on development phase.

Australia Considers F/A-18E/F for a A$2 Billion F-111 Replacement

While commitment for the future Joint Strike Fighter plan is reaffirmed, Australian Government is considering a A$2 billion back-up plan to replace the Australian Air Force's aging F-111 fighter bombers while it waits for the controversial Joint Strike Fighter jets to be delivered. The Australians are considering buying 24 F/A-18E/F Super Hornets to cover the widening gap between F-111 deactivation and activation of F-35s. (ABC Australia)

Australian Defence, Boeing SIgn Tactical UAV Contract

The Australian Defence Materiel Organisation has signed contracts with Boeing Australia Limited for the delivery and support of a Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (TUAV) capability for the Army. Boeing Australia, teamed with Israel Aircraft Industries, will provide the I-View UAV system. The Army’s TUAVs are scheduled to commence operational service in late 2009, operated by 132 Battery, of the 20th Surveillance and Target Acquisition Regiment, based at Gallipoli Barracks in Enoggera.

KAI Wins Orders for 50 Additional K-50 Trainers

The Government of South Korea has signed a contract with Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) for the procurement of 50 additional T-50 and TA-50 Golden Eagle advanced jet trainers, bringing the total number of T-50s ordered by South Korea to more than 70 of which eight are already operational. The T-50 was co-developed by KAI and Lockheed Martin to train pilots who will fly advanced fighters. The aircraft also carry weapons, including air/air missiles and air/ground weapons, performing light attack missions.

India, Russia sign pact to upgrade MiG-29 jets

The upgrading of 66 Indian Air Force MiG-29s has moved one step further with the official signing of the U.S. $850 million deal, with Moscow-based MiG Company. India currently operates three squadrons of MiG29s received between 1986 and 1996. The modernization process will include the introduction of the Klimov RD-33 series 3 extended life-cycle jet engines, new, more durable version of the original MiG-29 power plant. Other additions will include improved radars, and advanced avionics. The aircraft will be fitted with aerial refueling thus extending their range and mission endurance.

Harris Links Military, Government & Civilian Networks

Harris continues to expand the envelope of its latest Falcon family member – the AN/PRC-152(C) Falcon III radio. Following the recent SCA certification Harris Corporation demonstrated a new application of a software-programmable waveform that enables this software configurable radio to communicate between military, national guards and reserve units and commercially available APCO P25-based radios, commonly used with law enforcement, FBI, FEMA and other first responders.

Marine Corps to Field 160 Additional Combat Operation Centers

General Dynamics C4 Systems is producing 165 mobile Combat Operation Centers (COCs) for the U.S. Marine Corps Systems Command. The first systems will be deployed by July 2007 with at regimental and battalion level with U.S. Marine Corps units in Iraq. All systems will be fielded by 2009.

DRS To Develop Laser Receiver for Threat Warning Application

DRS Technologies will develop and demonstrate for DARPA a new near-mid wavelength infrared active detection receiver to be utilized for future threat warning applications. The receiver will be delivered for testing by November 2008. The total contract award could reach $13.7 million, if a $7.4 million option is exercised.

German Parliament Approves Boxer Acquisition

The German parliament approved the procurement of 272 BOXER armored protected vehicles for the German Army. The Dutch armed forces already confirmed the procurement of 200 vehicles which will be co-produced by the German-Dutch ARTEC consortium, where German and Dutch companies have equal shares.

Head Aimed 3D Visor, Telepresence Improve Robot Control

Chatten Associates, Inc. is integrating a 3DVisor into remotely driven vehicle's controller. The new device enables operators to manipulate robots to disarm and neutralize explosive charges. The visor provides the operator with head-aimed vision system, enabling them to intuitively control gimbaled mounted sensors.

ARTEMIS Hyperspectral Payload Delivered For New Satellite

Raytheon delivered new space based hyper-spectral imaging payload designed to spot that could help troops identify potential threats on the ground such as weapons, equipment and combatants. The sensor called ARTEMIS (Advanced Responsive Tactically Effective Military Imaging Spectrometer) was developed as an experimental device, under a U.S. $14 million program within 15 months. The new payload was developed to address the U.S. Air Force's responsive-space approach, addressing the rapid development, assembly and deployment of satellites and their cargo. Conceivably, systems could be assembled, loaded and launched into low-earth orbit within a week, compared to months or years required for the conventional processes.

Telephonics to Produce Counter IED Devices for SRCTech

Telephonics Corporation, a Griffon Corporation company received an additional incremental award of $30 million in funding from Syracuse Research Corporation (SRCTec, Inc.) for the production of Counter Improvised Explosive Device (Counter IED) systems. The recent award received so far by Telephonics approach $280 million. The company will deliver all systems within a year.

New Datalink Demonstrates high capacity airborne networking

L-3 Communications completed flight tests of a new IP-enabled, wideband Multi-Platform Common Data Link (MP-CDL) demonstrating the capability to sustain high capacity airborne networking. The test involved multiple missions flown by two Big Crow NKC-135 aircraft, establishing up to 274 Mbps datalinks over distances of 300 nautical miles (km). Simultaneous video transmission to manpackable ROVER III terminal validated the system’s ability to provide real-time, full-motion video through the net-centric MP-CDL terminal directly to warfighters on the ground.


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