20 September 2014

ST Marine launches third Omani patrol vessel

20 September 2014

A model of the Al-Ofouq-class patrol ship for the RNO (photo : Jane's)

Singapore Technologies (ST) Marine has launched the Royal Navy of Oman's (RNO's) third Al-Ofouq-class patrol ship, a company official confirmed to IHS Jane's .

Replacing the Dhofar class, the as yet unnamed 75 m vessel will be part of the RNO's effort to bolster Oman's offshore patrol capability.

The vessel is derived from ST Marine's proprietary Fearless-75 design and was launched at its facilities in Benoi, Singapore on 17 September.

In April 2012, ST Marine beat Dutch company Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding and India's Goa Shipyard to clinch the four-ship, SGD880 million (USD703 million) contract on offer by the Omani Ministry of Defence.

The Al-Ofouq class displaces approximately 1,100 tonnes and accommodates a crew of about 60. With a top speed of 27 kt, it can attain a standard range of 3,000 n miles at 16 kt. The vessels will likely be armed with the Oto Melara 76 mm Super Rapid system as a primary gun.

In July 2012, IHS Jane's reported that Thales Nederland was awarded a contract to equip the vessels with its TACTICOS combat management system, the Variant surveillance radar, the STIR 1.2 EO Mk 2 radar/electro-optical tracking system, and the Vigile electronic support measures.

ST Marine told IHS Jane's that the first vessel-in-class was launched on 29 January 2014 while the second vessel hit the water on 17 June the same year. The patrol ships are expected to be delivered from the second quarter of 2015, with the final vessel to be handed over in the third quarter of 2016.

The RSN currently operates a class of 11 of the original 55 m Fearless vessels.


Airbus Offers A400M to The Philippines

20 September 2014

The Airbus Military A400M’s capable for relief operations, rescue missions and disaster response was a focus of this new-generation airlifters (photo : Airbus)

Philippines eyed as aircraft parts hub

The Philippine government and the French aircraft firm, Airbus, are working to promote the Philippines as a hub for aircraft parts in the region, Malacanang said on Thursday.

The Palace said President Benigno Aquino 3rd sat down with leading French corporations with significant investments in the Philippines during his visit in Paris, France.

Airbus, it was learned, has been assisting the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) in making the country the center of aircraft parts manufacturing and for maintenance, repair and overhaul services.

Aquino met with Pierre Jaffre, executive vice president for Asia Pacific, and Pierre Lanore, vice president for Philippines Airbus, and the two businessmen also pledged to continue to participate in the modernization program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The Airbus officials also offered newly designed aircraft for disaster management.

The President also met with Schneider Electric, which offered several innovations in energy conservation that could substantially cut power consumption, along with other energy solutions for various major power plant projects all over the Philippines.

Schneider has been in the Philippines since 1995, with four manufacturing facilities employing nearly 3,000 workers. It also operates a shared services center for human resources and finance.

Another company, Teleperformance, a leader in the business process outsourcing (BPO) industry, also met with Aquino.

Daniel Julien, board chairman and founder of Teleperformance, told the President his company plans to double its existing workforce of 26,000 to 50,000, saying the Philippines is a strategic location for the companies they serve in the US, the UK and Canada.

Julien commended the Filipino workers of Teleperformace, describing them as “in-country heroes” on account of their exemplary work ethics and well-developed skills.

(Manila Times)

19 September 2014

Thales to Equip New Zealand's ANZAC Frigates with SMART-S MK2 Radar

19 September 2014

The SMART-S Mk 2 antenna is shown atop the foremast structure in this computer-generated image concept of a post-FSU ANZAC frigate. The layout shown in this rendering may change during the current preliminary design phase. (image : NZDF)

These medium-to-long range surveillance radars are to be installed on the two ANZAC class frigates operated by the Royal New Zealand Navy, in the scope of the ANZAC Frigate System Upgrade, performed by Lockheed Martin Canada. The first system is to be delivered early 2016, the second one early in 2017.

SMART-S Mk2 supports the full range of MBDA’s multi-mission missile, the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile as well as it being excellent price/performance value in the market. These elements were a key factor in Lockheed Martin Canada’s decision.

This contract marks yet another success for Thales‘s SMART-S Mk2, the world’s best-selling medium-to-long range naval surveillance radar. This radar has been sold well over 50 times, to navies on all continents. Geert van der Molen, Thales’s vice-president, in charge of Surface Radar activities: “SMART-S Mk2’s proven capability to support Evolved SeaSparrow Missile, Vertical Launch MICA, and now the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile sets the standard for 3D medium range radar market. It‘s no coincidence SMART-S Mk2 is the radar of choice for Navies around the world”.

SMART-S Mk2 is a modern naval air and surface surveillance radar that applies the unique multi-beam concept. Its high reliability and stealth target detection, even in cluttered environments, support long missions and operation in littoral environments. The SMART-S Mk2 is very easy to operate by only two fully automatic operational modes. Furthermore the SMART-S Mk2 is easy to install and integrate and easy to maintain.


U.S. Military to sell Hellfire missiles to Iraq, Jordan, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Qatar

19 September 2014

Hellfire missile (photo : yetdark)

REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. - U.S. Army anti-armor missile experts are ordering more than a thousand U.S.-made Hellfire II tactical missiles for the governments of Iraq, Jordan, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Qatar.

Officials of the Army Contracting Command at Redstone Arsenal, Ala., announced a $68.7 million contract this week to Hellfire Systems LLC in Orlando, Fla., to produce 1,361 Hellfire II missile models AGM-114R, AGM-114R-3, AGM-114P-4A, TGM M36E7, and ATM-114Q-6.

These missiles will be involved in U.S. foreign military sales to Iraq, Jordan, Indonesia, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The AGM-114R is the latest version of the Hellfire II missile. The others involved in this sale are earlier, less-capable models.

Hellfire System is a venture of the Lockheed Martin Corp. Missiles and Fire Control segment in Orlando, Fla. At one time it involved the Boeing Defense, Space & Security segment in St. Louis, but Boeing has not been involved in Hellfire missile development and production for several years, Lockheed Martin officials say.

The AGM-114R is the latest Hellfire variant, and is equipped with semi–active laser seekers to defeat many kinds of targets. The AGM-114R can be launched from several different kinds of fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, surface ships, and military ground vehicles.

Hellfires also are the missile of choice for several kinds of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) such as the MQ-1B Predator, MQ-9 Reaper, and MQ-1C Grey Eagle. Eventually these missiles may arm U.S. military unmanned helicopters.

The AGM-114R Hellfire II Romeo RX missile will use a semi-active laser guidance system and an integrated blast fragmentation sleeve warhead to engage targets that previously needed several Hellfire variants to destroy.

These missiles can seek out their targets autonomously or with designation from remote laser designators. The missile has a three–axis inertial measurement unit to enable it to attack targets from the side and behind.

The AGM-114R can be launched from higher altitudes than previous variants because of its enhanced guidance and navigation capabilities. With its multi–purpose warhead, the missile can destroy hard, soft, and enclosed targets.

Originally developed as an anti-tank missile for the Army's AH-64 Apache attack helicopter, the Hellfire missile has become one of the most versatile munitions in the U.S. arsenal. It can launch from fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters, UAVs, surface vessels, and land-based sites.

The AGM-114R will be guided by homing in on the reflected light of a laser designator. Other versions of the Hellfire are radar-guided fire-and-forget weapons. The Hellfire missile weighs 106 pounds, and has high-explosive variants designed to destroy tanks and other armored vehicles, and blast fragmentation versions designed to destroy trucks, antenna sites, concentrations of enemy troops, and other soft targets.

Development of the AGM-114R Hellfire missile became necessary after the Pentagon cancelled the Joint Common Missile (JCM) project, which was to replace Hellfire, as well as the AGM-65 Maverick air-to-ground missile.

On this contract Hellfire Systems LLC will do the work at the Lockheed Martin Corp. Missiles and Fire Control segment in Orlando, Fla., and should be finished by November 2016.

(Military Aerospace)

Saab Offers "100% Technology Transfer" in Bid to Secure TNI Gripen Deal

19 September 2014

JAS-39 Gripen (photo : Saab)

Saab is offering "100% technology transfer" in its bid to supply the Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara - TNI-AU) with its JAS 39 Gripen combat aircraft, a company executive has told IHS Jane's .

The TNI-AU is understood to be considering the Gripen along with other fighter aircraft, including the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet and the Sukhoi Su-35, to replace its ageing Northrop F-5E Tiger II fleet before the end of the decade.

The programme will procure 16 aircraft and is projected to be valued at more than USD1 billion.

Speaking to IHS Jane's on 15 September, Kaj Rosander, head of marketing and sales in Saab Asia Pacific, said the company had a "number of discussions" with the TNI-AU and the Indonesian government in which Saab had "shared the capabilities" of the Gripen E, the single-seat derivative of the two-seat JAS 39 Gripen NG.


RMAF to Fire First Anti Radiation Missile (AS-17 Krypton)

19 September 2014

RMAF Kh-31P Anti Radiation Missile (photo : Kementah)

SHAH ALAM: A Sukhoi Su-30MKM of the RMAF is scheduled to fire a Kh-31P anti-radiation missile (ARM) within the next few days.

The supersonic missile will be aimed at a floating radar emitter target that “is being towed as we speak to the range located on the South China Sea,” RMAF Air Operations Commander Lt Jen Datuk Seri Ackbal Abdul Samad.

The target was contracted to Ikramatic Sdn Bhd while RMAF is solely responsible for firing the missile without any support from the manufacturer

Just last week, another Su-30MKM from the 11th Squadron fired the anti-ship version of the Kh-31A at another floating target as part of the integrated missile firing exercise, Ex Angsa 9/2014.

According to the Ackbal, the target for the ARM was located at a different area away from the Ex Angsa site as it needed to be anchored to the sea bed. “The Ex Angsa target is located a site codenamed Alpha while for the ARM the location is known as Bravo

Ackbal said the Kh-31A was the first missile fired at the target, which was followed by the RMN’s Sea Skua and Exocet missiles. The Sea Skua was fired a Super Lyxnx helicopter and Exocet by the frigate, KD Kasturi.

“We decided to fire the Kh-31A first as the Exocet is the bigger missile. However, post firing analysis showed that the Kh-31A made a bigger hole,” he said at the closing ceremony of Ex Angsa today.

Su-30MKM fire KH-31A on Exercise Angsa 2014 (photo : Perajurit)

He did not offer any explaination for the post firing analysis but I believed as the Kh-31A reportedly fly at its target at Mach 2.7, the higher kinetic energy of the impact will be greater than the sub-sonic Exocet.

Asked whether they detected any foreign planes and ships trying to spy on the exercise, Ackbal said they were quite concern about the possibility but they did not detect any such activities during the whole exercise.

Unfortunately, RMAF was only able to supply us with a low res picture of the Kh-31A being fired by the Sukhoi. Hopefully they will have other pictures of the Kh-31 missile the A or P version even of those being loaded on the Sukhoi.

According to SIPRI, 150 Kh-31A/Kh-31P were delivered to Malaysia between 2007-2009 as part of the Su-30MKM deal.

Wikipedia entry on the Kh-31 (AS-17 Krypton) (yes, I know its not the most definitive but hey its free!)

“Kh-31A – active seeker head for use as an anti-shipping missile against vessels up to destroyer size, range of 25 km–50 km (13.5–27 nmi; 15.5–31 mi). Missile is sea-skimming as it approaches the target.

“Kh-31P (Type 77P) – passive seeker head for use as an anti-radiation missile. Stays at high altitude throughout its flight, allowing higher speeds and increasing range to 110 km (60 nmi; 70 mi).

(Malaysian Defence)

TNI AU Pengguna Pertama Skyshield 35 Mk-2

19 September 2014

Skyshield 35 MK-2 senjata pertahanan udara yang akan dioperasikan oleh Detasemen Pertahanan Udara Paskhas saat diangkut dengan pesawat Hercules A-1319 (photo : TNI AU)

Suatu kebanggaan bagi TNI Angkatan Udara/TNI sebagai pengguna pertama senjata pertahanan udara Skyshield 35 mm MK-2 selain negara pembuatnya Swizeland, senjata ini dibuat tahun 2014 oleh pabrikan senjata Swiss Oerlikon Contraves Rheinmetall.

Skyshield 35 MK-2 (Skyshield Gun Missile) untuk memenuhi kebutuhan Paskhasau melengkapi satuan jajaran sebagai senjata pertahanan udara yang akan dioperasikan oleh Detasemen Pertahanan Udara (Denhanud) Paskhas.

Skyshield Gun Missile merupakan sistem pertahanan udara titik (Short  Range Air Defence/ SHORAD) mempunyai jangkauan peluru sejauh 4000m dengan kecepatan 1000 peluru/menit, dan jarak kecepatan amunisi rata-rata 1050 meter/detik, sedangkan maksimal magazen sebanyak 252 butir.

Skyshield Gun Misille memiliki amunisi AHEAD  (Advanced Hit Efficiency and Destruction) kaliber 35 mm yang dapat menyembur menjadi 202 butir dan membentuk semacam perisai (Metal Spin-stabilised Projectiles) setelah 4 detik ditembakkan, sehingga kemungkinan target lolos dari sasaran peluru hanya 10%.

Satu Firing Unit (FU) Skyshield Gun Misille terdiri dari dua unit meriam revolver kaliber 35 mm (1,38 inci), satu sistem sensor pengendali/radar dan pos komando secara terpisah, juga dilengkapi dengan dua rudal darat ke udara jenis Chiron buatan Korea Selatan yang sudah terintegrasi dengan Skyshield Gun Sistem sehingga membuat jangkauan radar lebih luas dan efektif, sehingga sekaligus mengembangkan pertahanan titik menjadi pertahanan wilayah/area.

Dislokasi Skyshield

Skyshield Gun Missile dapat ditempatkan dimana saja sesuai kebutuhan dengan sistem mobile dengan menggunakan empat  truk yang sudah dilengkapi dengan derek, masing-masing truk memuat satu pos command, dua meriam revolver 35 mm dan satu sistem sensor kendali/radar, sedangkan Chiron dapat ditempatkan hingga sejauh 5 km dari Command Post.

Saat ini Skyshield Gun Missile ditempatkan di Denhanud 471 Paskhas Halim Perdanakusuma, Denhanud Paskhas Lanud Supadio Pontianak, dan Denhanud Paskhas Lanud Sultan Hasanuddin masing-masin satu Baterai yaitu dua Firing Unit.

Sedangkan personel yang mengawakinya sudah mendapat pelatihan sebanyak 20 personel terdirin darai 12 personel Paskhas, empat personel Depo 60 Senamo Lanud Iswahjudi dan Depohar 50 Lanud Adi Sumarmo, Solo.

Skyshield Gun Missile akan ditampilkan pada pada defile peringatan HUT TNI ke-69 pada 7 Oktober mendatang di Dermaga Ujung Surabaya.