23 Juni 2018

DBM to Evaluate Acquisition of AFP Modernization Projects

23 Juni 2018

If needed the number of equipment could be reduced to comply with budget (photo : FNSS)

MANILA -- While stressing that the list of equipment it wants for Horizon Two of the Revised Armed Forces of the Philippines Modernization Program is final, it is still up to the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to evaluate and decide which platform to acquire first, a defense department official said Thursday.

Department of National Defense (DND) spokesperson Arsenio Andolong said the list of equipment will still be evaluated by the DBM, which will then locate the possible source of funding and prioritize the acquisition of the platform.

The DND, if needed, can also reduce the number of equipment it has shortlisted for Horizon Two, to comply with the PHP300 billion stipulated for the procurement of military equipment scheduled for 2018 to 2022.

Horizon One was implemented from 2013 to 2017 and resulted in the acquisition of the three Del Pilar-class frigates, 12 FA-50PH light-lift interim fighters, two strategic sealift vessels, to name a few. Horizon Three is slated for 2023 up to 2028.

AFP wish list for Horizon 2 with the budget PHP 300 billlion ($5.6 billion) (image : MaxDefense)

"In the case of (diesel-electric) submarines, we can get just one or two, if needed, and for the multi-role fighters, we don't need to get the whole squadron (12 aircraft). We can just get six, we can comply with the budget," Andolong said in Filipino.

Equipment slated for acquisition during Horizon Two are towed and self-propelled howitzers, multiple launch rocket systems, armored recovery vehicles, five support vehicles, tactical radios, ground mobility equipment (light, medium, heavy), individual weapons, crew-served weapons, and night-fighting equipment for the Army; multi-role fighters, radar systems, and light and medium lift aircraft.

Also to be acquired are heavy lift helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles, helicopters (attack and combat utility), special mission and long-range patrol aircraft for the Air Force; frigates, corvettes, submarines, amphibious assault vehicles, anti-submarine helicopters, attack crafts, medium lift helicopters, and multi-role vessels for the Navy.

Also being eyed are combat engineer, force protection, explosive ordnance disposal, chemical biological radiological nuclear, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief and medical equipment.


TNI AL Gelar Operasi Petir Mandau untuk Pengamanan ALKI III

23 Juni 2018

KRI Terapang 648 (photo : Republika)

Unsur Koarmada II Tetap Waspada Jaga Perairan Indonesia

Komandan Gugus Keamanan Laut (Danguskamla) Koarmada II Kolonel Laut (P) Kisdiyanto setelah melaksanakan Patroli Udara menggunakan pesawat Cassa U-6206 di Alur Laut Kepulauan Indonesia (ALKI) III menyempatkan diri untuk mengunjungi KRI Terapang (TRG)-648 dan Lanal Gorontalo. KRI TRG-648 yang tengah melaksanakan Operasi Petir Mandau - 18 sedang melaksanakan Tapkonis dan Bekal Ulang Logistik Cair di Pelabuhan Pelindo Gorontalo. Kamis, (19/06/2018).

Setibanya di Bandar Udara Jalaludin, Danguskamla Koarmada II disambut oleh Komandan Lanal Gorontalo, Letkol Laut (P) Tony Sundah dan Komandan KRI Terapang- 648, Letkol Laut (P) Yohanes Berchmans. Pesud U-6206 yang sedang melaksanakan Bekal Ulang Logistik Cair dalam kesempatan tersebut digunakan Danguskamla Koarmada II untuk mengunjungi dan mengecek kesiapan Unsur dan Pangkalan guna mendukung pelaksanaan operasi TNI AL di Gorontalo.

KRI Terapang yang sudah melaksanakan Operasi Petir Mandau-18 sejak tanggal 1 Juni 2018.

Di kapal perang jajaran Satuan Kapal Cepat (Satkat) Koarmada II, seluruh prajurit KRI mendapatkan arahan khusus dari Danguskamla yang menyamapaikan bahwa, kepada seluruh personel yang melaksanakan Jaga agar meningkatkan Awarness Penjagaan, Selalu fokus dalam melaksanakan penjagaan, baik yang berada di anjungan maupun jaga di mesin, Melaksanakan ronda keliling setiap jam mengecek kondisi ruangan dan peralatan yang operasional, Seluruh personel harus konsentrasi dan tetap alert terhadap perubahan, serta yang tidak kalah penting adalah agar masing-masing personel tahu tugas dan tanggung jawabnya.

Pesawar NC-212 U-6206 Skuadron 600 Penerbal (photo : Wiraaryaguna)

"Operasi Petir Mandau-18 adalah Operasi Keamanan Laut di ALKI, sehingga unsur yang bertugas harus melaksanakan patroli dengan sebaik-baiknya. Berikan hal yang terbaik demi nama baik TNI AL dan bakti kepada NKRI, seluruh personel juga diharapkan untuk menjaga Kondisi Teknis kapal, dan jangan mengambil resiko yang berbahaya karena keselamatan personel dan materil adalah yang utama atau Safety is Paramount", ungkapnya.

Selesai memberikan pengarahan ke seluruh prajurit KRI, selanjutnya Danguskamla Koarmada II menuju Lanal Gorontalo untuk meninjau sarana dan prasarana dalam rangka menunjang pelaksanaan tugas TNI AL. Adapun sarana yang baru saja selesai dibangun adalah Perumahan Perwira dan Rusunawa untuk prajurit Lanal, Pembangunan Rusunawa untuk prajurit ini adalah wujud kerjasama TNI AL dengan Kementrian PUPR.

Setelah kunjungan ke KRI dan Lanal, Danguskamla Koarmada II kembali ke Bandara Jalaludin untuk melanjutkan patroli menggunakan Cassa U-6206.


DoD Contracts Two Gulfstream G550s for FMS Customer, Likely Australia

23 Juni 2018

Australia has a requirement for up to five G550 aircraft to be converted into special mission platforms by L-3. To date, contracts for four of the 'green' airframes have been awarded. (photo : Gulfstream Aerospace)

The US Department of Defense (DoD) has contracted two ‘green’ Gulfstream G550 business-jet aircraft to be converted into special mission platforms for a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customer, most likely Australia.

A USD83 million contract was awarded to L-3 Communications on 21 June to procure the two aircraft. The award, which was granted by the 645th Aeronautical Systems Group (ASG) at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio, is set to run through to August 2021. The 645th ASG, commonly known as ‘Big Safari’, is responsible for the rapid procurement and fielding of new weapons systems, sensors, and platforms for domestic and international operators.

Australia's new Airborne Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance and Electronic Warfare (AISREW) platform based on the Gulfstream G550, will probably look like this. (Photo: Gulfstream)

In June 2017 the DoD approved the sale to Australia of up to five G550 aircraft fitted with intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR), and electronic warfare (EW) mission systems, with integration work to be carried out by L-3 in Greenville, Texas. A contract for the procurement of the first two ‘green’ aircraft for conversion was awarded in January 2016, with this latest awarded being for a second two. The total value of the procurement if all the options are exercised is USD1.3 billion.


22 Juni 2018

China Offers Military Credit to Cambodia for Military Modernization

22 Juni 2018

Cambodian tanks and armoured personnel carriers stand in readiness for the military exercise in Kampong Speu. (photo : Khmer Times)

China has agreed to provide Cambodia with more than USD100 million in aid to support the modernisation of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces (RCAF), the government in Phnom Penh has announced.

The funding will be provided through a defence co-operation agreement (DCA) signed by the two countries during Chinese defence minister Wei Fenghe’s two-day visit to Cambodia, which ended on 18 June.

Also under the DCA, China will donate additional military equipment to the RCAF to support the service’s counter-terrorism efforts and the two militaries will look to expand military training and education programmes.

The Cambodian government did not elaborate on how the military aid will be spent by the RCAF, although other lines of credit provided by China have usually been spent on procuring Chinese military platforms.


Duterte Approves P300-Billion Military Upgrade

22 Juni 2018

Philippine Army Scout Ranger (photo : pdff)

MANILA - President Rodrigo Duterte has approved a 5-year plan to spend P300 billion ($5.6 billion) to modernize the outdated military, defense officials said on Wednesday.

A previous 15-year upgrade plan failed to take off in the mid-1990s, leaving the Philippines with outdated hardware, including warships from World War 2 and helicopters used by the United States in the Vietnam War.

"We have the go signal now to buy brand-new equipment, like fighters, drones, light tanks, radar, an additional frigate and a submarine to boost our defense capability," said a defense official, who declined to be named because he is not authorized to speak to media.

The previous administration of Benigno Aquino III spent about a third- P91 billion ($1.7 billion) - on the military during his 2010-2016 term in office, mostly on secondhand ships and planes.

Duterte approved the P300-billion modernization plan at a meeting with top defense and military officials last month.

A senior general said Duterte had approved 33 modernization projects, with a focus on domestic security and protecting the vast maritime borders of the archipelago.

"We're putting a premium on unmanned aerial vehicles, long-range patrol aircraft, offshore patrol ships and an electric-diesel submarine," he told Reuters.

The military is bent on preventing another Islamic State-inspired insurgency after rebels seized Marawi, the country's only Islamic city, for five months last year.

The Philippines also faces a challenge in South China Sea, a strategic waterway most of which is claimed by China, which has built military outposts there.

Besides the Philippines and China, Brunei, Malaysia, Taiwan and Vietnam also have rival claims on the area, through which $3 trillion worth of sea-borne goods pass every year.

Manila had planned to acquire four submarines after 2023, but the plan could be accelerated to boost the Navy's regional capabilities, said Arsenio Andolong, a defense department spokesperson

"We want to get submarines as soon as possible," he said.

Duterte had set aside $1 billion for new helicopters and light tanks, but no purchases have been made yet.

The Philippines has received donated military hardware from Australia, China, Japan, Russia and the United States, mostly to assist in disaster response and fighting militants and pirates.


Expert Predicts China May Shortly Have a Third Aircraft Carrier

22 Juni 2018

Third aircraft carrier of PLAN in the centre (image : ChinaDaily)

China might soon have its third aircraft carrier, said military expert Song Zhongping, after a picture showing three aircraft carriers was made public in a news piece by China Shipbuilding Industry Corporation (CSIC) on Wednesday.

Song told Global Times that the three aircraft carriers shown could be China's original aircraft carrier Liaoning, with the first domestically-developed aircraft carrier alongside a new one with electromagnetic aircraft launch systems.

The picture shows that one of the carriers is equipped with three electromagnetic aircraft launch systems, which suggests high speed launch capabilities, high frequency take-offs and quick responses.

A giant "island", or command center on the deck explains that the warship is a conventionally-powered carrier rather than a nuclear-powered one. However, Song added that according to the "unwritten rules" of the People's Liberation Army, a nuclear-powered carrier is probably already under development since the warship with electromagnetic launch catapults has now been exposed.


21 Juni 2018

C-130J Fuselage Trainer Enters Service for RAAF

21 Juni 2018

The Royal Australian Air Force has accepted for service a new C-130J Fuselage Trainer that will help deliver comprehensive loadmaster training. (photos : CAE)

CAE today announced that the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has accepted into service a new C-130J Fuselage Trainer (FuT).

The C-130J FuT was officially handed over to the Royal Australian Air Force during a ceremony today at RAAF Base Richmond.

“Our C-130J Hercules are some of the busiest aircraft in Defence, and having a Fuselage Trainer relieves the burden of using a real aircraft to conduct essential training,” said Minister for Defence Marise Payne.  “The Fuselage Trainer is an exact replication of the cargo bay and systems in a real C-130J Hercules aircraft, and will provide loadmasters with a purpose-built classroom ideal for training.”

The overall design and development of the C-130J Fuselage Trainer was led by CAE, which included leveraging simulation software from other C-130J training programs and tailoring the development to meet RAAF training requirements. Airbus Australia Pacific provided the physical hardware by using two ex-RAAF C-130H airframes to recreate the fuselage of the C-130J aircraft, and Lockheed Martin provided consulting services and spare parts used in the production of the fuselage trainer.

According to the Honourable Christopher Pyne, Australia’s Minister for Defence Industry, the C-130J Fuselage Trainer will play a key role in helping engineers and loadmasters design new load carrying techniques for the Hercules transport.

“The next-generation of vehicles and systems that can be deployed by the Hercules will utilise the Fuselage Trainer to determine what is the best practice,” said Minister Pyne.

“This new C-130J Fuselage Trainer will enhance operational availability of our C-130J fleet while enabling us to provide a safe, cost-effective and realistic training environment for our loadmasters and rear crew,” said an RAAF spokesperson.  “In addition, we will now be able to network with our C-130J Full-Flight and Mission Simulator and other training assets to provide full-crew mission training and rehearsal in a virtual environment.”

CAE designed and manufactured the C-130J Full-Flight and Mission Simulator (FFMS) used by the RAAF at Richmond, as well as desktop trainers and instructor tools used as part of the C-130J groundschool.  In addition, under the Management and Support of Australian Defence Force Aerospace Simulators (MSAAS) program, CAE Australia provides a range of training services on site at RAAF Base Richmond, including academic, simulator and live flying instruction. CAE Australia will now provide maintenance and support services on the C-130J FuT.

“We are pleased to continue our longstanding relationship with the Royal Australian Air Force as their C-130J training partner, and delighted to work closely with Airbus and Lockheed Martin who provided valuable hardware and support that helped deliver this key project for the RAAF,” said Ian Bell, CAE’s Vice President and General Manager, Asia-Pacific/Middle East.  “The RAAF continues to be one of the world’s leading air forces in the application of simulation-based training, and this new C-130J Fuselage Trainer is another example of the RAAF investing in new technologies and capabilities to best prepare their aircrews for operational missions and requirements.”