25 Februari 2015

PAF Stockpiles Essential Spare Parts for MG-520 Attack Helicopters

25 Februari 2015

MG-520 "Defender" light attack helicopter (photo : Timawa)

MANILA (PNA) - To keep its McDonnell Douglas MG-520 "Defender" attack helicopter fleet flying, the Philippine Air Force (PAF) has allocated Php 16,226,432.11 to acquire essential spare parts for the aircraft.

This is in line with PAF efforts to increase the number of mission and combat ready aircraft in its inventory while awaiting for the delivery of more modern jet fighters and attack helicopters.

Pre-bid conference is slated for Feb. 26 while bid opening and submission is on March 11.

Both are slated for 9 a.m. at the PAF Procurement Center Conference Room, Villamor Air Base, Pasay City.

The PAF is known to operate between 12 to 16 models of the MG-520, according to military sources.

The PAF affair with the MG-520 started in the early 90's when 25 units of these excellent aircraft were delivered to country.

It was used with great effect against New People's Army (NPA) rebels and lawless elements like the Abu Sayyaf Group for the past few years.

The MG-520 is derived from the MG-500 light utility helicopter.

It can be armed with .50 caliber heavy machines and air-to-ground rockets.

The aircraft carries a crew of two and is capable of flying to speeds up to 160 miles per hour (257 kilometers per hour), making it ideal for close air support work.


New Russian Underwater Grenade Launcher Hits IDEX-2015

25 Februari 2015

 DP-64 double-barrel grenade launcher (photo : Vitaly Kuzmin)

The DP-64 double-barrel grenade launcher penetrates and destroys submerged targets from as far as 400 meters away, and is designed to protect oil rigs from enemy frogmen.

Russia's JSC Bazalt has announced that it has launched mass production of the DP-64 "Nepryadva" double-barrel anti-sabotage grenade launcher, following an order from Russia's Defense Ministry, the head of the company's Science and Engineering Department, Pavel Sidorov told RIA Novosti.

"The DP-64 is currently in mass production. In 2014 we got a sizable order from the Ministry of Defense, I can't disclose its exact volume and what units it will be supplied to, but it's for the Navy," Sidorov, the company's representative at the IDEX 2015 international defense expo in Abu Dhabi, UAE, told the agency.

The grenade launcher is designed for the protection of ships from combat divers (frogmen) while on external raids, open anchorages and naval bases, as well as the protection of water-based structures, sea platforms such as oil rigs, and other important coastal and off-shore facilities. The grenade launcher's maximum effective range is 400 meters.

Previously, the DP-64 grenade launcher, which is capable of firing at underwater targets, was only made in small batches for ship-based naval infantry, some units of the Federal Protective Service and the Russian Coast Guard, which is part of the FSB's border guard service.
The DP-64 was developed in 1989 at the V.A. Degtyarev Plant in Kovrov, Vladimir region. It entered service in 1990.


Malaysia, Canada Join Forces in Military Training Programme

25 Februari 2015

A combined Cansofcom and 21 GGK patrol moves through the jungle in a joint training exercise. (photo : themalaysianinsider)

Military special forces from Canada and Malaysia last week concluded the first formal exercises of a comprehensive training exchange programme aimed at strengthening operational capabilities.

The joint cooperation saw soldiers from both countries training each other in a jungle environment, while Malaysian forces are currently in Canada for training in cold weather operations and combat techniques.

Speaking at a closing ceremony on February 19 to mark the completion of the joint training between the Canadian Special Operations Regiment and the Grup Gerak Khas of the Malaysian army, acting high commissioner Robert Burley praised the Malaysian soldiers, saying, “Canada’s world-class special forces are proud to engage with their Malaysian counterparts on this joint training.

“It is a great example of our close partnership and shared commitment to enhancing security for our citizens,” he added.

The ceremony was also attended by chief of staff for Canada’s Special Forces Colonel Alan Mulawyshyn, who travelled from Canada for the ceremony, and Colonel Zolkopli bin Hashim, deputy commander of 21 GGK.

The US$4.2 million (RM12 million) training programme, which will extend over three years, is funded by the Department of National Defence and led by Canadian Special Operations Forces Command (Cansofcom) of the Canadian Armed Forces.

Training and exchanges will take place in Canada and Malaysia until March 2017.

Canada’s security and defence cooperation with Malaysia has seen over US$10 million (RM29 million) in recent and approved funding. Key areas of cooperation include counter-terrorism, nuclear security, migrant smuggling, and border security.

During the visit of Prime Minister Stephen Harper to Malaysia in October 2013, the two countries signed a memorandum of understanding on security cooperation. – February 24, 2015.

(The Malaysian Insider)

US Program Chief: Singapore Nearing F-35 Buy

25 Februari 2015

F-35 JSF fires AMRAAM (photo : defensetech)

VICTORIA, Australia — Singapore is moving closer to ordering the Lockheed Martin F-35 joint strike fighter, according to program head US Lt. Gen. Chris Bogdan.

Bogdan also noted increased activity from potential foreign military sales (FMS) customers for the F-35, including Israel, which recently committed to a further 14 aircraft.

"On the FMS sales front we're getting an increase in customer interest in the airplane," he said here at the Australian International Airshow at the Avalon Airport.

"We have a number of other [potential] foreign military sales customers that are asking us to start a greater dialogue with them in terms of the airplane, including Singapore."

Bogdan said that the joint program office (JPO) has been exchanging information with the Republic of Singapore Air Force for a number of years to support their decision making within their timeline.

"Over the past year, the discussions we have had have deepened [and] their request for information has gotten broader, so that would indicate to us that Singapore has begun to take the next step toward making a decision," he said.

The government of Singapore had not indicated which F-35 variant it was interested in and had requested information on all three: the conventional takeoff, the short-takeoff vertical-landing, and the carrier model.

Bogdan hosted a media roundtable on the opening day of Avalon 2015 with Australia's F-35 program head, Air Vice Marshal Chris Deeble. Deeble said the project to acquire 72 conventional F-35s for the Royal Australian Air Force was on track to deliver an initial operating capability by the end of 2020.

However, Deeble identified several areas that were causing him concern, noting that the Australian project office carries out an independent analysis of the technical problems.

"Understanding what capability we will get at the end of the development phase is really important," he said.

"What does worry me is sustainment and training and support to the aircraft. The autonomic logistics global system is still evolving. It is behind, it is late and we have to do more work to accelerate that and understand what that means in a national context."

(Defense News)

24 Februari 2015

Rockwell Collins to Provide Joint Fires Observer/Joint Terminal Attack Controller Simulator to Australian Army

24 Februari 2015

Rockwell Collins Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) (photo : Rockwell Collins)

GEELONG, Australia  - Rockwell Collins will provide the Australian Army with the latest generation Joint Fires Observer (JFO)/Joint Terminal Attack Controller (JTAC) simulator that is designed to meet all of the service’s training requirements now and into the foreseeable future.

“This award demonstrates that Rockwell Collins is an end-to-end simulation and training provider who can meet the unique requirements of training JFOs and JTACs,” said Nicholas Gibbs, managing director of Rockwell Collins Australia. “We look forward to working with the Australian Army to provide this vital training capability to their soldiers.”

This system, part of the RealFires™ family of JFO and JTAC simulators, will be located at the School of Artillery and is fully integrated with the Rockwell Collins FireStorm™ Integrated Targeting System. The Rockwell Collins FireStorm system forms the core of the Land 17 Phase 1B Digital Terminal Control System (DTCS). The RealFires™ system is a fully scalable solution that can be delivered as a range of training solutions, from desktop to full 360-degree immersive domes.

The JFO/JTAC simulator delivered to the School of Artillery includes training room facilities, a 270-degree dome, high fidelity graphics and full simulation of FireStorm sensors.

(Rockwell Collins)

Slovakia Eyes Defense Cooperation with Philippines

24 Februari 2015

RM-70 Modular MLRS made in  Slovakia (photo : Military Today)

The Slovak Republic on Monday said it is eyeing defense cooperation with Manila that will enable them to provide training, firearms and other defense equipment to the Philippines.

Visiting Slovak Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajcak said his government can offer defense “expertise, technologies and devices” that can be of use to the Philippine military, which is in the process of modernizing its aging equipment and armaments.

“Defense is one of the areas where we could cooperate,” Lajcak said after a bilateral meeting with Philippine counterpart Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario. “Slovakia has its expertise and we have some technologies.”

The Philippines, whose military is perceived to be among the weakest in the region, is currently scrambling to acquire ships, planes, satellites and coastal defense equipment mainly from the United States and also from other countries amid renewed territorial conflict in the South China Sea.

Manila and Beijing are locked in a long-running territorial dispute in the resource-rich waters, a cluster of islands shoals, reefs, and coral outcrops, where Malaysia, Brunei, Vietnam and Taiwan also have competing claims.

The Philippine government accused China of infringing on its territory, harassing its fishermen, constructing artificial islands and sabotaging oil exploration. China, which claims the sea nearly in its entirety, insisted that all it actions are legal and undertaken within the scope of its sovereignty.

Defense cooperation

“With regard to defense cooperation, we see a potential,” Lajcak said. “We are suggesting that our experts get together, experts from the Department of Defense to come to Slovakia to identify the possibilities.”

Apart from arms and ammunitions, Lajcak said Slovakia can provide the Philippines with what it needs from training, development of facilities to technology on de-mining.

Del Rosario welcomed the Slovak government’s offer, but said there are no specific talks yet on the acquisition of defense artillery from the European state, which has a flourishing defense industry.

“We do have our modernization program so that’s a possibility. We are also looking at the possibility of training,” Del Rosario said.

In their meeting, the two officials signed a joint plan of action – a partnership framework, which, Del Rosario said, would serve as a “roadmap on trade and investments, renewable energy, mutual consular concerns, cultural and educational exchanges, people to people ties and multilateral cooperation.”

Productive meeting

“We had a very productive meeting where we welcomed new avenues of cooperation,” he said. “The revitalization of bilateral trade is a mutual priority between our two countries.”

Lajcak admitted that bilateral cooperation between the Philippines and Slovakia is underdeveloped, but stressed that “there is always a good potential in our relations.”

“Slovakia has many things to offer. We are small, but very dynamic country in the very heart of Europe,” he said. “I see potential in infrastructure, agriculture, and energy generation and transmission.”

Del Rosario and Lajcak also said they discussed major regional and international issues, including the South China Sea.

Both officials expressed the same view that the territorial disputes must be resolved peacefully in accordance to the rule of law – a position long held by the Philippines.


RAAF C-27J Spartan Training Set to Commence

24 Februari 2015

RAAF C-27 J Spartan (photo : Aus DoD)

Flight training is about to commence on Australia’s newest transport aircraft, the Alenia C-27 J Spartan Battlefield Airlift aircraft.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Defence, Darren Chester has confirmed that over the coming weeks, RAAF aircrew will commence airborne training in Texas in United States.

“These pilots and loadmasters will go on to become our first qualified C-27J crew members,” Mr Chester said.

Mr Chester emphasised the contribution that the aircraft will make to tactical airlift in Australia and around the Asia Pacific region.

“The C-27J significantly improves the Australian Defence Force’s ability to move troops, equipment and supplies. It can land at more airfields and provide disaster relief support in a range of environments,” Mr Chester said.

Ten C-27J Spartans will replace the retired DHC-4 Caribou, an Australian icon of the skies which flew for over 40 years.

The C-27J complements the capabilities of the current C-130J and C-17A aircraft and uses common C-130 infrastructure and aircraft systems such as engines, avionics and cargo handling systems.

The first RAAF C-27J is set to arrive in Australia in the middle of 2015.

(Aus DoD)