21 Agustus 2018

Boeing Completes Autonomous Synchronised Flight Tests in Australia

21 Agustus 2018

Australian-developed on-board command and control system automatically perceives, processes and reacts in coordination with other unmanned vehicles. One of the remotely piloted aircraft developed by Boeing seen here. (photo : Business Insider)

BRISBANE, Australia - Boeing [NYSE: BA] has successfully completed the first suite of synchronised unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flight tests using new on-board autonomous command and control technology developed by Boeing in Australia.

Conducted at a regional Queensland airfield, the test flights saw five UAV test beds equipped with Boeing’s new on-board system safely complete in-air programmed missions as a team without input from a human pilot.

The milestone comes six months after establishing the company’s largest international autonomous systems development program in Queensland.

“What we’ve created here in Australia has the potential to transform the use of unmanned vehicles for civil, commercial and defence applications – whether that be in the air, on the ground or out at sea,” said Shane Arnott, director of Boeing Phantom Works International.

“This capability will be a huge driver of efficiency and productivity. By safely teaming unmanned systems with human operated systems, we keep people away from dull, dirty and dangerous tasks so they can focus on activities that machines can’t or shouldn’t do.”

Boeing’s partnership with small and medium-sized enterprises helped drive rapid design, development and testing of this autonomous technology. In just two months, Boeing engaged small-to-medium enterprises and vetted and issued AU$2.3 million in contracts with 14 Queensland businesses.

Over the coming months, the Boeing Australia team will incorporate and test more advanced behaviours on high-performance air vehicles before exploring other domains such as unmanned ocean vehicles.

This activity is delivered in partnership with the Queensland Government as part of Boeing’s Advance Queensland Autonomous Systems Platform Technology Project.

For 100 years, Boeing has led manned and unmanned technology innovation and integration from sea to air to space.


Satellite-Controlled Anka-S UAV Fires Guided Munitions

21 Agustus 2018

MAM-L guided munition (photo : Hasan Can)

Turkey has successfully test fired Smart Micro Munition (MAM-L) from an Anka-S unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) controlled by satellite, the Directorate for Turkish Defence Industries (SSB) announced on 17 August.

MAM-L munition, produced by Roketsan, has a range of 8–14 km.

Six Anka-S UAVs have been delivered to the Turkish Air Force Command, with four more planned by the end of 2018.


Philippines Considers Possibility to Purchase Naval Ships from Russia

21 Agustus 2018

PN considers to purchase Russia's naval ship (photo : dr.dk)

MOSCOW/TASS/. The Philippines is studying the possibility to purchase naval ships from Russia and is comparing Moscow’s conditions with other proposals, Philippine Ambassador to Russia Carlos Sorreta told TASS in an interview.

"We are looking at the naval vessels," he said. "We have already had people come here look at the documents, look at the vessels. And the process will continue. They will have to look at others also, other countries and then come up with a decision."

"Russian equipment is getting to be very desirable for many developing countries," he went on. "They prefer Russian equipment and the terms are good. We’ve been discussing possible terms."

The diplomat noted that Moscow does not set any political terms in the arms trade, unlike some other capitals. "Russia’s terms are reasonable and they don’t have what’s called ‘political conditionality.’ When we buy something, you trust that we will use it well. With some countries, when we buy something they put limitations, conditionalities," the envoy added. An important step in the development of cooperation was the signing of the agreement on military-technical cooperation by Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Philippine Secretary of National Defense Delfin Lorenzana on October 24, 2017. Under this agreement, Russia sent a batch of grenade launchers to the Filipinos.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Da Nang in November 2017 that Russia is ready to "develop relations [with the Philippines,] including in the military sphere and military-technical area." In an interview with TASS in early 2018, Russian Ambassador in Manila Igor Khovayev reported that other contracts may be signed after the contract on grenade launchers.


20 Agustus 2018

Singapore Navy launches its Seventh Littoral Mission Vessel, Dauntless

20 Agustus 2018

Seventh LMV, RSS Dauntless (photo : SBR)

SINGAPORE - The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) launched Dauntless, its seventh littoral mission vessel (LMV), on Saturday (Aug 18).

Minister for Finance Heng Swee Keat officiated the launching ceremony, while his wife, Mrs Heng Hwee Nee, launched the vessel.

The event took place at ST Engineering Marine's Benoi Shipyard.

Speaking at the ceremony, Mr Heng said: "Naming this LMV Dauntless aptly reflects the RSN's determined spirit to overcome all adversity without fear, capturing also the attributes of our founding generation.

"The Dauntless spirit will continue to guide the RSN in innovating and constantly improving itself, to safeguard Singapore."

Mr Heng added that a strong and capable navy was crucial to the country's survival.

Seventh LMV, RSS Dauntless (photo : RSN)

He said the navy's ability to secure and keep key sea lines of communication open, and its role in preserving Singapore's right to move freely in waters worldwide is "critical" to the Republic's prosperity and security.

Dauntless is the seventh LMV to be launched by the navy.

The first LMV, RSS Independence, was commissioned during the RSN's Golden Jubilee on May 5 last year by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. Two other vessels, RSS Sovereignty and RSS Unity, were also commissioned last year.

Two previously launched LMVs - Justice and Indomitable, will be commissioned later this year.

The sixth LMV, Fortitude, which was launched in March, is currently undergoing sea trials.

LMVs can be quickly configured with mission modules to take on a wide spectrum of operations, allowing the crew to deliver calibrated responses using lethal and non-lethal options to deal with a range of maritime threats.


PHL Army Completes Inspection of Korean Kooryong Rocket Artillery System

20 Agustus 2018

K136 Kooryoung 130 mm MLRS (photo : Dante)

On May 28, MaxDefense Philippines revealed that the Philippine Army is in the process of negotiating for used South Korean K136 Kooryong Multiple Launch Rocket System (MLRS).

In an update released this month, MaxDefense said it received confirmation that the Philippine Army already completed inspection and evaluation of the K136 Kooryong MLRS.

“Based on information we received, the Philippine Army was satisfied with the units that will be provided. They also completed their evaluation of the MLRS’ purpose, the capability of the Philippine Army to acquire the ammunition, spare parts, and logistics support for the type, and in determining what capabilities it would be adding to the Philippine Army,” MaxDefense said.

According to MaxDefense, the next step includes securing funding for the transfer which will be used for “paying for the minor repair works, transportation from Korea to the Philippines, and purchasing the required ammunition from South Korean ammo suppliers or manufacturers.”

MaxDefense said in May that South Korean Ministry of National Defense (MND) offered the MLRS to the Department of National Defense (DND) as Excess Defense Articles (EDA) last year. The DND then relayed the offer to Philippine Army.

It added that in March, the DND confirmed that the Philippine Army is interested on an initial battalion of K136 Kooryong MLRS in the 130mm caliber, which is 18 units for 3 batteries of 6 firing units plus associated support vehicles and items.


Defence Confirms Nellis Incident Growler Write Off

20 Agustus 2018

This image taken from outside the northwest permitter of Nellis AFB shows fire crews in HAZMAT suits inspecting the damaged aircraft after the engine fire. (photo : Barry Ambrose)

Defence has confirmed the RAAF EA-18G Growler which had an engine fire and aborted takeoff from Nellis AFB in January has been deemed “beyond economic repair and has been withdrawn from service”.

In an August 13 statement to the ABC, a Defence spokesman said, “The investigation into the EA-18G Growler aircraft incident at Nellis Air Force Base has been completed and was provided to the Chief of Air Force on 30 July 2018. A review of the recommendations is underway.”

The aircraft was taking off from Nellis AFB on January 28 for a familiarisation flight in preparation for Exercise Red Flag 18-1 when it suffered a catastrophic engine failure. The two crew members stayed with the aircraft until it came to rest between Nellis’ eastern runway and a parallel taxiway, and were able to exit the jet and get clear of the growing fire.

Sources tell ADBR that, had the failure happened a couple of seconds later, the aircraft would have been committed to the takeoff and the crew would probably have had to eject over the desert north of the base.

“The highly-trained aircrew responded to the emergency situation and performed a ground evacuation,” a Defence spokesman told ADBR on February 27. “The Directorate of Defence Aviation and Air Force Safety (DDAAFS) Accident Investigation Team (AIT), working in cooperation with the United States Navy, have carried out engineering inspections that indicate the most likely cause is an engine component failure.”

Sources told ADBR that a high-pressure compressor disk of the right-hand engine suffered a catastrophic uncontained failure. The turbine disk broke into three major pieces and these were ejected from the aircraft, with one destroying the right-hand vertical stabiliser, another considerably damaging the left engine, and the third damaging the runway.

It is unclear whether the RAAF will look to replace the aircraft, or whether it will be considered part of an acceptable rate of attrition which would have been a factor when the original order for 12 EA-18Gs was placed.

As to the possibility of compensation for the component failure leading to the loss of a near-new jet which had less than 200 hours on it, Defence would only say that it “is exploring options for the recovery of economic losses resulting from the incident.”

This is likely to be a process which will primarily involve government-to-government negotiations through the US Navy as the foreign military sales (FMS) parent service, rather than with Boeing as the prime contractor or General Electric as the engine manufacturer.


Kremlin: Indonesia Applied for Loan to Buy Russian Su-35 Fighter Jets

20 Agustus 2018

Su-35 fighter (photo : National Interest)

Indonesia has applied for a bank loan as part of a signed contract for the procurement of Russian Su-35 Fighter jets, reported theDeputy Director of the Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation of Russia, Vladimir Drozhzhov.

"There are several directions that we had to follow simultaneously with the signing of the contract. Work continues. A bank loan must be secured and now we are handing this arrangement, “said Drozhzhov.

Earlier, sources informed that Indonesia would receive a commercial loan from Russia for the purchase of 11 Su-35 Fighter jets. Reports said that it would be commercial and not a state loan.

 Russia signed the contract for the supply of 11 multifunctional fighters Su-35 Indonesia in mid-February. The amount of the contract exceeds $ 1 billion.

As noted, in accordance with the Indonesian law, the supply of modern aircraft to the country is based on the offset obligations and countertrade. In return, Russia pledged to purchase Indonesian goods, such as rubber, palm oil and other Indonesia's traditional exports.