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BAE Systems Wins Contract to Upgrade South Korean KF-16 Fighters

BAE Systems has been selected as the prime integrator for the upgrading of the South Korea’s KF-16 fighter jets. Following the selection decision, South Korea’s Defense Acquisition and Procurement Agency (DAPA) is expected to negotiate a contract with BAE through the US Foreign Military Sale program later in 2012. The upgrade includes a new radar which Seoul hasn't selected yet, avionics and databuses supporting modern weaponry. BAE would request US government approval to share source codes for the aircraft’s flight and weapon’s control operational programming with South Korea.

F-22 Raptors Arrive in Okinawa

The first contingent of United States Air Force (USAF) F-22 Raptor stealth fighters arrived at Kadena Air Force Base located on Japan’s southernmost island of Okinawa on 28 July.

Hard-Charging Australian Submarine Temporarily Sidelined During RIMPAC 2012 by Leak Causing Minor Flooding

While participating at RIMPAC 2012 HMAS Farncomb experienced flooding while cruising at periscope depth during an exercise and was forced to surface. The sub sailed to Hawaii for repairs. With Farncomb’s departure from her assigned area of operations, Australia was reduced to a force of only one mission-capable submarine as the fleet’s remaining four submarines were undergoing maintenance and repairs.

Japan-Based USAF F-16s Resume Flight Operations After Crash

Following the crash of a lone United States Air Force (USAF) F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 35th Fighter Wing off the northeast coast of Japan on 22 July, the Wing’s F-16s were ordered grounded for safety inspections.

Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier Crashes in Arizona

A Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier crashed in the Arizona desert about 15 miles northwest of Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Yuma during a training mission at 3:30 p.m. on 25 July. The pilot ejected safely only moments before the aircraft crashed on the desert floor and is reported to have suffered only minor injuries.

China Announces Intention to Garrison Disputed South China Sea

The People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) Central Military Commission has approved plans to establish a permanent military garrison in the disputed South China Sea, strengthening its grip of a disputed area claimed by the Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia.

US Air Force F-16 Crashes in Ocean Northeast of Japan

A US Air Force Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon crashed in the sea approximately 470 kilometers northeast of the northernmost Japanese island of Hokkaido at 11:30 a.m. on 22 July. the aircraft was enroute to North America at the time of the incident and the cause of the accident is, at this time, unknown. The pilot ejected and was rescued several hours later.

Taiwan Signs LOA for F-16 Upgrades

Following a cooperation agreement with Taiwan’s state-run Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC), Lockheed Martin seems to be on track to upgrade the fleet of 146 F-16A/B Block 20 Fighting Falcons for Taipei.

Power Shake-up in North Korea

After relieving Vice Marshal Ri Yong-ho from Chief of the General Staff and other leadership positions, North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and his uncle Jang Song-taek are said to be in control of the military, and are in a position to initiate economic changes without fear of military opposition

Sikorsky Signs Five-Year H-60 Helicopter Contract

Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation confirmed that they have signed a multi-year contract to build Black Hawk and Seahawk helicopters for the US Army and Navy; the contract is valued at between $7.3 billion and $8.5 billion and could eventually reach as high as $11.7 billion.

Pacific Isle Disputes Continue Unabated

China and the Philippines have engaged in several face-to-face encounters in the South China Sea, most recently in the Scarborough Shoals some 500 nautical miles north of Half Moon Shoal. The Chinese frigate grounded at the shoal since last friday has been linked to previous attempts to use intimidation to prevent Filipino fishing boats from entering the fishing grounds in the area.

Japan and China at Odds Over Disputed Islands Again

Last week, three Chinese naval vessels were sighted patrolling the waters around the Senkaku islands on two separate occasions, provocative events that drew two strongly-worded complaints from Tokyo. The three Chinese patrol ships were met by a Japanese Coast Guard vessel mirroring a Chinese/Philippine standoff over the Scarborough Shoals in the South China Sea

US Air Force Grounds C-27J Fleet Due to Flight Control Failure

The entire fleet of US Air Force C-27J cargo aircraft has been ordered grounded following a mechanical failure of one aircraft’s flight control system. The failure occurred during a training mission on 3 July and was described as a “flight control problem” in a written statement released by Air Force officials.

Osprey Emergency Landing Reignites Japanese Safety Concerns

A Marine Corps MV-22B Osprey forced to make an emergency landing on 9 July is fueling a resurgence of Japanese concern regarding the safety of the world’s first production tiltrotor combat aircraft. Marine Corps officials announced that an MV-22B assigned to Marine Corps...

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