30 November 2015

Air Force Revealed 927th Fighter Regiment Equipped with Su-30MK2

30 November 2015

927th Air Force Regiment (Lam Son squadron) will be the third unit equipped with the modern fighter Su-30MK2 (photo : Soha)

In reportage titled "Lam son ... tame 'cobra' " published by the People's Army issued on 21/10/2015 revealed that Third Air Force Regiment of Vietnam was equipped Su-30MK2 aircraft.

Accordingly: "Since 2014, the Air Force Lam son squadron, ie 927th Air Force Regiment (371st Air Force Division) has maneuver force to 923rd Air Force Regiment (also under Division 371), trained to do Su-30MK2 aircraft owners ... ".

Thus it is possible that the pilot conversion learner modern fighter regiment 927 was deployed from 2014.

927th Air Force Regiment (Lam son squadron) stationed at the Kép airport (VVKP), task force protecting the airspace north of the country.

The previous year, the regiment was operating the MiG-21, so the conversion training for pilots are put on top.

923rd Air Force Regiment, which is operating the Su-30MK2 fighter was chosen to ensure that the Lam son squadron can "take a shortcut to head", ready to absorb and master the modern fighter.

So far, the pilots of Regiment 927 has been chosen fly Su-30MK2 trained by the foreign experts.

Pilots have accumulated a large number of flight hours as: Colonel pilot Nguyen Van Thien, chief Regiment 927 with 400 flying hours on Su-30MK2 ; Captain Le Hoai Nam with 120 flight hours.

Besides the pilots' technical team, who play a key role helping each takeoff flight safety are also conversion training. Currently the technical personnel of the Regiment 927 was employed, independent activities and effective exploitation of Su-30MK2.

In addition to human factors, infrastructure facilities are stationed at the regiment was also completed with the upgrading of Kép airport runways, pilot houses, etc.

Thus, with the upcoming Vietnam will receive 12 Su-30MK2 enough (bringing the total number of aircraft of this type to the number 36), the Regiment 927 will be able to receive and operate.

Colonel Nguyen Van Thien pilot said, "... are willing to absorb and master Su-30MK2 to be on equipment".


Thailand Menerima Kiriman 2 Helikopter M-17V5

30 November 2015

Kedatangan dua helikopter Mi-17V5 Angkatan Darat Thailand (all photos : GSAB) 

Pada kamis 26 November 2015 lalu dengan menumpang pesawat angkut raksasa Antonov An-124 di bandara U Tapao Thailand sekitar 100 km selatan Bangkok telah datang kiriman dua helikopter Mi-17V5 dengan nomor ekor 76404 dan 76405 dari Rusia.

Kiriman 2 helikopter ini merupakan pesanan Angkatan Darat Thailand yang kontraknya dilakukan pada bulan Juli 2014 lalu, dimana penandatanganan pesanan 2 helikopter Mi-17V5 ini dilakukan di Moscow, Rusia.

Kedua helikopter angkut sedang Mi-17V5 ini akan bertugas ke dalam kesatuan General Aviation Support Battalion (GSAB) untuk mendukung mobilitas Divisi Infantri ke-4 Angkatan Darat Thailand.

Kesatuan GSAB dengan call sign Goliath (GLA) bermarkas di Sa Pran Nak, provonsi Lopburi, Thailand Tengah.

Sebelumnya GSAB telah menerima kiriman tiga helikopter Mi-17V5 pada tahun 2011, dengan demikian GSAB akan mengoperasikan lima helikopter jenis ini. 

General Support Aviation Battalion Angkatan Darat Thailand saat ini mengoperasikan tiga jenis helikopter yaitu Bell UH-1H, Boeing CH-47D Chinook, dan Mil Mi-17V5.

(Defense Studies)

Thomas Global Systems Signs Contract to Assist with Upgrade of Australian Submarine Platform Training Simulator

30 November 2015

Platform Training Simulator at HMAS Stirling (photo : Naval Today)

Sydney, Australia – Thomas Global Systems (Thomas Global) has signed a contract with Thales Australia to design and manufacture the complex user interface panels for the Platform Training Simulator (PTS) used to train crews operating the Royal Australian Navy’s Collins Class submarines.

The PTS emulates the demanding submarine operating environment, ensuring the safe handling of critical systems including manoeuvring, propulsion and diving safety. The system is operated by the Submarine Training and Systems Centre (STSC) based at HMAS Stirling, Rockingham, Western Australia.

Thales is upgrading the Platform Training Simulator to align to the Collins Class submarine current configuration and selected Thomas Global as the major sub-contractor for the project.

Thomas Global CEO, Angus Hutchinson, said – “We are pleased to again be partnering with Thales, this time on the important Collins PTS upgrade program. Thomas has a long history of applying our engineering capabilities to key naval programs, working with partners such as Thales to provide world-class in-country capabilities in support of critical defence assets.”

(Thomas Global)

Aquino OKs DND Request for 'Multi-Year-Contract' for 7 Modernization Projects

30 November 2015

F/A-50PH (photo : GMA Network)

CLARK AIR BASE, Pampanga (PNA) -- Modernization efforts for the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) has gained momentum after President Benigno S. Aquino III approved Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Voltaire Gazmin's request to enter into a "multi-year contract" for seven acquisition projects.

This was disclosed by DND undersecretary for finance, munitions, material and modernization Fernando Manalo during the sidelights of FA-50PHs welcoming ceremony in Clark Air Base, Pampanga Saturday.

"PNoy (President Aquino) has approved the request of DND for SND to be authorized to enter into multi-year-contract. The approval will pave the way for the acquisition of 
-two frigates,  
-anti-submarine helicopters and 
-amphibious assault vehicle for the Philippine Navy; 
-long-range patrol aircraft, 
-close-air support aircraft, 
-munitions for FA-50 and 
-air surveillance for the Philippine Air Force," he added.

Manalo said payment from the seven projects will run from 2015 to 2018.

Granting of the MYC (multi-year contract) will allow the military to pursue modernization program beyond Aquino's term.

Total value of the seven projects is about PHP44 billion.(PNA)

FA-50PHs part of a bigger plan to acquire more advanced aircraft

CLARK AIR BASE, PAMPANGA (PNA) --- Despite the vast improvement of the supersonic FA-50PHs over the subsonic SIAI-Marchetti S-211s, pilots trained to fly the South Korean-made lift interim fighter aircraft is just part of a plan to acquire advanced multi-role fighter aircraft.

This was disclosed by Lt. Col. Rolando Conrad Peña III, one of the three Filipino pilots who undergone FA-50PH flight training with the Republic of Korea Air Force over the last six and a-half months.

He has over 56 hours of flying time with the FA-50PHs

"The FA-50PHs is part of a bigger plan to acquire more more advanced multi-role fighters," Peña said.

However, he did not give an exact timetable on when the more advanced fighter aircraft will be acquired.

“We are very much elated and very proud that we now have this state-of-the-art aircraft. We’ve flown a push-pull cable, subsonic aircraft – the S-211. Now that we have the FA-50PHs, it ushers in a new history, so flying, going back, return to the supersonic age so to speak,” Peña pointed out.

“The aircraft is a lead in fighter trainer so it is a light attack aircraft. It can do light multi-role missions but primarily it is a lead in fighter trainer. This is going to be a transition platform for us, from flying the subsonic S-211 to the more advanced multi-role fighters we’ll be acquiring,” he added.

Peña said the FA-50PHs would be used for various missions, including interception.

“We’ve been trained to do tactical intercepts, so we are able to do that,” he added.

Peña said the two aircraft arrived without any armament.

He said efforts are underway to acquire weapons for the aircraft, which may include air-to- air and air-to-ground capability.

“It has maximum payload capacity of 10,000 lbs so its very much capable. But of course, there are limitations but let’s not talk about the limitations.. Let’s talk about the capabilities and I think we bought the best lead in fighter trainer,” he said.

Peña said the Air Force can now respond faster to any situation.

“Now that we have a supersonic aircraft, our reaction time will be faster and we are more capable with this type of aircraft,” he said.

“This is really like a Ferrari because it is a fly-by wire aircraft.Its comparable to an F-16 but (it's a) little weak on some parameters but then it is best that the Air Force acquired at the moment. But we are looking forward to acquiring the multi-role fighters,” Peña said. (PNA)

29 November 2015

Pulau Biak : Penjaga Gerbang Pertahanan Timur Indonesia

29 November 2015

Pulau Biak, Papua (photo : Antara)

Pulau Biak merupakan gerbang timur Indonesia yang langsung berbatasan dengan Samudera Pasifik. Oleh karena itu, lokasi Pulau Biak menjadi sangat penting dalam menjaga kedaulatan di Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia (NKRI) terutama dalam menghadapi serangan maupun penerobosan wilayah dari laut lepas Samudera Pasifik. 

Pulau Biak yang dijaga oleh pasukan TNI dari Korem 173/Praja Vira Braja dan jajarannya juga menjadi pusat penjagaan pulau-pulau kecil terluar di sekitarnya, seperti Kepulauan Mapia yang terletak di sisi utara, Kepulauan Padaido yang terletak di sisi timur, Pulau Supiori yang terletak di sisi barat maupun Pulau Numfor yang berada di sisi selatan Pulau Biak. 

Sejumlah anggota TNI dari Korem 173/Praja Vira Braja melakukan patroli di sepanjang Pantai Distrik Oridek, Biak Numfor, Papua (photo : Antara)

Dalam melaksanaan pengamanan, Korem 173/PVB berfungsi sebagai Komando Pelaksana Operasi (Kolakops) dibawah Kodam XVII/Cenderawasih yang menjalankan dua operasi yaitu Pengamanan Daerah Rawan (PAM Rahwan) dan Pengamanan Pulau Terluar (PAM Pulau Terluar). Dengan bekerja sama secara terpadu dengan dengan satuan-satuan lain dari Angkatan Laut dan Angkatan Udara di Pulau Biak, mereka rutin melakukan patroli di daerah-daerah rawan, pesisir pantai dan pulau-pulau kecil terluar.

Selain pengamanan, salah satu fungsi TNI di pulau terluar adalah memberdayakan serta membantu masyarakat lokal yang membutuhkan. Oleh karena itu mereka juga sering turun ke lapangan untuk melihat dan membantu masyarakat secara langsung. 

Tinggal di Pulau yang kecil dan jauh dari hingar-bingar kota besar, dan harus jauh dari keluarga juga menjadi tantangan tersendiri bagi prajurit yang bertugas melakukan pengamanan di Pulau Biak dan pulau-pulau terluarnya. Namun semua tantangan itu harus dilalui demi mempertahankan keutuhan Indonesia. 

Pulau Ndana NTT, Sekarang Dijaga oleh Marinir

29 November 2015

Pulau Ndana, Rote, Nusa Tenggara Timur (image : GoogleMaps)

Pulau Ndana, Bagian Terluar Indonesia, Dulu Tentara Australia Sering Singgah, Kini Dijaga Marinir

Mengunjungi pulau terluar Indonesia selalu begitu mengagumkan. Bukan hanya keindahan alamnya, adat dan budaya masyarakat di pulau-pulau itu sangatlah menarik. Begitu pula pulau terluar yang berbatasan dengan benua Australia, Pulau Ndana di Kabupaten Rote, Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT). Kita akan dibawa ke ''surga'' yang lain. 

Untuk sampai ke pulau yang kini dijaga TNI-AL tersebut, kita harus menempuh perjalanan yang cukup panjang. Dari Kupang, kita harus terbang ke Kota Ba'a 

Kota Ba'a adalah ibu kota Kabupaten Rote Ndao. Pulau Ndana terletak di kabupaten yang baru berusia 14 tahun itu.

Untuk meneruskan perjalanan ke Pulau Ndana dari Ba'a, masih diperlukan waktu 1,5 jam. Kondisi ombak pun cukup tinggi, meski cukup bersahabat. Begitu tiba di Pulau Ndana, suasana sangat sepi. Namun, pemandangan pantainya sangat indah. Pasir putih membentang dari garis pantai. Debur ombak terus berderu. 

Begitu memasuki Pulau Ndana, kita disambut papan nama dari kayu bertulisan Selamat Datang di Pulau Ndana dalam dua bahasa, Indonesia dan Inggris. Tidak jauh dari papan nama tersebut, tampak barak TNI-AD.

Barak tersebut terdiri atas tiga bangunan utama. Di bagian belakang, terdapat lapangan yang kerap digunakan para anggota TNI untuk berolahraga. Ada pula sebuah sumur yang disesuaikan dengan warna doreng TNI.

Sebagai informasi, tanah untuk pembangunan barak TNI diberikan secara gratis oleh keluarga Mesakh yang memegang hak ulayat atas Pulau Ndana. Hal tersebut sesuai dengan surat permohonan komandan Korem 161/Wirasakti Kupang pada 3 September 2007. Mereka juga menyerahkan tanah seluas 400 meter persegi pada 2001 untuk pembangunan mercusuar.

Pulau Ndana, pulau terluar di bagian selatan Indonesia yang kini dijaga oleh TNI (photo : JPNN)

Selain itu, hingga September 2013, pemerintah telah merampungkan pembangunan kantor Posal (Pos AL), menara, dan dua unit rumah dinas lengkap dengan alsatri serta genset. Keluarga Mesakh juga menyerahkan tanah seluas 400 meter persegi pada 2001 untuk pembangunan mercusuar.

"Dalam perjanjian antara TNI dan keluarga Mesakh, anggota TNI harus menjaga hutan agar tetap utuh dan tidak boleh menembak rusa. Di sini banyak rusa yang berkeliaran, meski hewan itu sangat jarang terlihat," kata Kusman.

Menurut pria 38 tahun itu, sebelum TNI berada di pulau tersebut, patroli angkatan laut Australia kerap mengunjungi pulau itu. Hal tersebut dinilai cukup berisiko bagi keutuhan wilayah Indonesia.

"Sebelum ada markas TNI di sini, kapal-kapal patroli Australia kadang singgah di sini. Untuk menjaga keamanan pulau, sejak 2006, ditempatkan TNI Angkatan Darat dan satuan Marinir. Awalnya, pulau ini adalah wilayah kerajaan. Keturunannya sekarang ya keluarga Mesakh itu," jelasnya.

Selain bercerita soal sejarah, para anggota TNI siap mengantar para turis berkeliling pulau. Jika jumlah turis hanya beberapa orang, biasanya mereka akan diajak melihat-lihat keindahan Pulau Ndana dengan kendaraan motor beroda tiga. Kendaraan tersebut bisa memuat 4-5 orang. Di kota besar, kendaraan itu kerap digunakan untuk mengangkut barang seperti galon air mineral."Kami menyebutnya Viar (merek motor Viar, Red)," ujar Kusman.  

Berkeliling pulau dengan menaiki Viar cukup seru. Pengemudinya pun harus piawai. Sebab, medan yang ditempuh bukan jalanan beraspal, melainkan padang rumput dan semak belukar. Guncangan-guncangan kecil pun mengiringi perjalanan. Kadang Viar selip saat melewati medan berpasir. Karena itu, penumpang sebaiknya berpegangan erat.

Kendaraan tersebut juga digunakan para anggota TNI untuk berpatroli. Karena mereka kerap berpatroli dan mengantar tamu, di sepanjang area pulau yang seluas 14,19 kilometer persegi atau sekitar 1.400 hektare itu sudah terbentuk jalan setapak. "Ini (jalan) ya kami yang bentuk. Gara-gara kami tiap hari patroli dan antar tamu," jelas pria asal Surabaya tersebut.

Namun, lanjut Kusman, tidak semua medan di Pulau Ndana bisa dilewati dengan Viar. Misalnya, jalan menuju danau air tawar, salah satunya danau merah. Wisatawan pun harus berjalan kaki. Perjalanan ke danau yang memang berwarna merah itu sedikit melelahkan karena medannya penuh semak belukar dan berbatu ditambah udara yang sangat panas.

See full article JPNN

Elbit Systems' MUSIC Test Successfully Protects C295 from Missile Threats

29 November 2015

As part of the 2015 exercise the Israeli MUSIC DIRCM system was tested, utilizing an operational system integrated on an Airbus C295 aircraft, along with the Passive Airborne Warning System (PAWS) IR-based missile warning system, both systems are made by Elbit Systems. (photos : Defense Update, Elbit Systems)

MUSIC Demonstrates Laser DIRCM Capability

The MUSIC family of Directed Infrared Countermeasure (DIRCM) systems was demonstrated recently at the annual, multinational EMBOW exercise held at the Bundeswehr WTD91 test site in Meppen, Germany last month. The annual exercise evaluates different capabilities to protect aircraft against Man Portable Air Defense missile threats (MANPADS).

The exercise is conducted under live and monitored and instrumented conditions, by the NATO 3rd NAFAG Air Capability Group SG/2, enabling pilots and engineers to evaluate the capability of aircraft and countermeasures to defeat infrared-guided surface-to-air missiles, from basic Manpads to more advanced surface to air short-range systems (SHORADS).

As part of the 2015 exercise the Israeli MUSIC DIRCM system was tested, utilizing an operational system integrated on an Airbus C295 aircraft, along with the Passive Airborne Warning System (PAWS) IR-based missile warning system, both systems are made by Elbit Systems.

During the tests, conducted by a multi-national NATO team, a C295 aircraft with an operationally installed EW self-protection suite successfully demonstrated the capability to detect, acquire, track and jam the trial test equipment on the ground, under extreme conditions. According to the system developers, the initial assessment of the results highlighted that the system has the capability to successfully jam MANPADS (infra- red, ground to air heat seeking Man-Portable Missiles) from the first, second and third generation, using generic NATO jam codes.

The demonstration was a joint project of Elbit Systems and Airbus Defence & Space (Spain). It was widely supported by the Israeli MoD, the Spanish Air Force and NAFAG ACG3 SG/2 (NATO Air Forces Armaments Group, Air Capability Group 3, Sub Group 2), which is the NATO group responsible for the development and validation of air platform protection solutions.

Elbit Systems’ MUSIC family of DIRCM systems integrate an advanced fiber laser technology together with a high rate thermal tracking camera and a small, highly dynamic mirror turret to provide effective, reliable and affordable protection to all types of aircraft and under all operational conditions.

The PAWS family of combat proven missile warning systems uses IR to reliably and rapidly detect the most advanced threats in all flight conditions.

Elbit Systems is currently under contract to supply more than 110 DIRCM systems to over ten customers, for installation on 20 different fixed and rotary-wing platform types.

The MUSIC family of DIRCMs have been extensively and successfully tested by various countries and are in full scale production for several NATO customers, including Germany and Italy. In Brazil, Israel and other countries the MUSIC systems are integrated on military, VIP and commercial helicopters and other fixed-wing aircraft. The systems are also fully operational with Israel’s commercial aviation fleet, protecting commuter jet aircraft serving domestic and international destinations.

(Defense Updates)

28 November 2015

PT PAL Capai Progres Signifikan atas Kapal SSV Pesanan Filipina

28 November 2015

Pemasangan main block mast kapal SSV pesanan Filipina (photos : defence.pk)

Pada hari Jumat 27 November 2015 telah dilakukan pemasangan main block mast atas kapal SSV pesanan Filipina. Pemasangan main block mast ini menandai selesainya pembuatan struktur kapal berbasis LPD kelas Banjarmasin/Banda Aceh yang pernah dibuat oleh PT PAL untuk TNI Angkatan Laut.

Kapal SSV pesanan Filipina ini telah dimulai pembuatannya pada Januari 2015 yang ditandai dengan proses first steel cutting yang dilakukan di galangan kapal PT PAL Surabaya. Peluncuran kapal ini dari dok kering rencananya akan dilakukan pada bulan Desember 2015, untuk selanjutnya kapal akan diselesaikan di dok basah.

Filipina memesan 2 kapal perang jenis Strategic Sealift Vessel (SSV) kepada PT PAL dengan nilai kontrak US$ 90 juta. Kapal jenis SSV tersebut mempunyai panjang 123 meter dan lebar 21,8 meter, kapal mampu membawa 3 unit helikopter dan mampu membawa 649 orang terdiri dari awak kapal, pasukan dan penumpang. Kapal ini mampu melaju hingga kecepatan 16 Knots, dengan mesin pendorong 2 x 3.000BHP.

Pesanan 2 kapal SSV untuk Angkatan Laut Filipina secara kontrak harus dilakukan pada bulan Mei 2017, termasuk kewajiban untuk melewati tahapan pengujian seperti uji pelayaran dan dan juga uji sistem.

(Defense Studies)

NAVANTIA Delivers Final Batch of Four Landing Crafts to Australia

28 November 2015

LHD Landing Craft (LLC) (photo : RAN)

Navantia has the pleasure in delivering to the Commonwealth in Sydney the final batch of four LLCs. This is a major achievement, where Navantia has played an important role – that of Prime Contractor for the first time in an Australian program.   Since 2007, Navantia has been working in three important programs for the ADF, namely the Air Warfare Destroyers (AWDs), Landing Helicopter Docks (LHDs), and the LHD Landing Craft (LLCs), under different contractual schemes to deliver to the best of its ability. 

On 16th December 2011, Navantia signed a contract with the then Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) under JP 2048 Phase 3 to build and deliver twelve LHD Landing Craft (LLCs) to the Commonwealth. All twelve have now been delivered to HMAS WATERHEN in Sydney on or ahead of schedule and to budget. The LLCs were built and tested in Cádiz, Spain, and shipped out to Australia. 

Navantia understands that the first eight units are in operation with the RAN and are performing to the full satisfaction of Navy, having achieved various missions during sea trials with HMAS CANBERRA, which has also been commissioned into the RAN. Her sister ship, HMAS ADELAIDE, is due to be commissioned in Sydney on 4th December 2015. Since delivery of the LLCs, Navantia has provided in-country support and is committed to ensuring its availability for service at all times. This commitment will be maintained by Navantia Australia Pty Ltd, which is also assisting BAE Systems with Through Life Support of the LHDs. 

Navantia is fully committed to Australia and will contribute to projects as far as possible within its proven capacity and ability to supply.  We look forward to working with the Commonwealth and industry even more closely than before, to achieve the program goals that we totally share. In this regard, Navantia is currently engaged in the SEA 1654 Phase 3 Maritime Operational Support Capability tender process, and is working in a collaborative environment in the SEA 5000 Future Frigate program and the SEA 1180 Offshore Patrol Vessels project.


US Offers M109 SPH to Malaysia

28 November 2015

US M109 Paladin (photo : Kentucky Guard)

SHAH ALAM: UNITED States has offered Malaysia up to 30 M109A5 Self Propelled Howitzer (SPH) under the Excess Defence Articles (EDA) programme. The M109s would be upgraded to the latest A5 standard before entering service with the Army, if the offer is taken up.

The upgrading could be done in the US or locally, industry sources told Malaysian Defence. It is likely around 20 SPH will be upgraded while the rest could be used as spares.

Malaysia has not been a keen EDA buyer previously as shown by the programme database, for reasons unknown. Therefore the likelihood that this offer being accepted remain low however even though bigger nations like Australia, Canada and even Singapore had used this route to get cheap spare parts for their assets.

Checks showed that the M109A5-standard uses the 39-caliber 155 mm M284 cannon in an M182 mount, which gave the variant a maximum range of 23,500 meters with unassisted projectiles and 30,000 meters with Rocket Assisted Projectiles (RAP Rounds).

The A5 variant can carry 36 complete rounds of ammunition and has a 440 hp engine instead of the standard 405 hp engine. The latest variant of the M109 in service with the US Army is the Paladin, referred to previously as the A6 or A7 variant.

It is also expected that SPH delivered will have upgraded fire control and other components under the deal, according to the industry sources. The deal is inclusive of in-service support which was the main reason the offer for the Mark V SOC was not taken up.

The EDA offer marked a big boost for the Army which had been wanting an SPH unit so it could stand up its first armoured brigade. On October 2, the 11 Kor Armor DiRaja – which operates the Pendekar MBTs and support tanks – were transferred to the Army’s Third Division. The unit was previously under the purview of the Army’s Field Command although it was stationed in the Third Division’s AOR. The transfer is seen as the first step towards the setting-up of the armoured brigade.

However, as reported previously by Malaysian Defence, the long-standing requirement for the SPH -either tracked or wheeled – will not be funded in the RMK11. As funds for SPH is not approved under RMK11, the EDA offer could be taken up under the Operating Expenditure (OE) budget in 2017 and 2018.

Industry sources told Malaysian Defence that despite this, the M109s faced a stiff competition, from another excess SPH, the PzH2000s, most likely from ex-German Army stocks. The PzH2000 is a more modern design than the M109s offered by the US. It is fitted with a L52 artillery gun, with a maximum range of 30 km with the standard L15A2 round,about 35 km with base bleed rounds, and at least 40 km with assisted projectiles.

However even used PzH2000s is more expensive than the M109s. It was reported that Croatia paid 41 million Euros (RM184 million) for twelve PZh2000 – modernised and overhauled with three used for spare parts together with a simulator and training and support trucks.

In 2011, Chile procured 12 M109A5s for some US$15.8 million (RM66.7 million) under the EDA programme, which covered the procurement, overhaul and upgrading as well as training and shipping costs. The Chilean already operated another 12 M109s procured separately from this deal.

(Malaysian Defence)

Two F/A-50 Fighter Jets Arrive in Clark

28 November 2015

Two FA-50 fighter jets arrive in Clark, Pampanga, on November 28, 2015. (photo : PH Air Force, Han Chia Ho)

MANILA, Philippines – The fighter jets have landed.

Two of a squadron of FA-50 Lead-In Fighter Trainers (LIFT) that the Philippines acquired from South Korea arrived Saturday morning, November 28, at the former US air base in Clark, Pampanga.

The Philippine Air Force (PAF) flew S-211 trainer jets in a diamond formation to meet the FA-50s over Tarlac. A Water Cannon Salute – a ceremony where firefighting vehicles spray water on newly arrived aircrafts – was given to the jets while they were taxiing. Guests and the media witnessed the show.

The arrival of the fighter jets marks the return of the Philippine Air Force to the supersonic age.

The jets were flown to the Philippines by South Korean pilots and will only be formally turned over to the Philippine Air Force after a series of acceptance flights. Another ceremony is expected.

"All air without force" had been a long-running joke after the Air Force retired the last of its US-designed fighters in 2005.

Ten more FA-50s will arrive between 2016 and 2017 to complete the squadron that cost the government P18.9 billion ($401.6 million).

It is one of two big-ticket projects, along with the P18-billion frigates project, funded from the P85-billion ($1.806 billion) initial fund provided by the administration of President Benigno Aquino III under the Revised Modernization Program of the Armed Forces of the Philippines.

The military modernization comes as the country faces the aggressiveness of China in the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea), where it has built artificial islands. (READ: PH to tribunal: China island building destroys seabed).

Strictly speaking, the FA-50 is a lead-in fighter trainer aircraft but it is also called a fighter jet because of its minimum fighter capabilities. The FA-50 design is derived largely from the US' F-16. This means it won't be a problem if the Philippines, in the future, gets the money to upgrade to the more expensive designs.

The KAI website describes the FA-50 as a "light combat derivative of the T-50 supersonic advanced jet trainer."

It can carry 4.5 tons of weapons, including air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles, machine guns, and precision guided bombers, among others. It is also equipped with Night Vision Imaging System (NVIS), Radar Warning Receiver (RWR), and the Counter Measure Dispenser System (CMDS).

The country used to have one of the most capable air forces in the region, and was the first to have fighter jets. The Philippine Air Force became famous in 1962 when its fighter jets – upon the request of the United Nations – helped secure the airspace of Congo, and deal with secessionists.

In 1963, the Air Force also sent its men to Bali, Indonesia, after the eruption of Mount Agung affected thousands.

The country hosted a US air base in Clark, Pampanga, until the Senate voted to evict the US bases in 1991. The Philippine Air Force has since deteriorated.


DCNS Delivers Proposal for SEA 1000 Future Submarines

28 November 2015

DCNS design for SEA 1000 (photo : Aviation Week)

DCNS today lodged its final deliverables to the Australian Government’s Competitive Evaluation Process to select an International Program partner for the SEA1000 Future Submarine Program.  

The proposal includes a Government to Government Agreement from The French Ministère of Defence’s Direction Générale de l’Armement (DGA) to the Commonwealth of Australia’s Department of Defence and a binding written commitment on key aspects of the deliverables.

DCNS design for SEA 1000 (photo : gentleseas)

This milestone has been achieved on schedule and marks the beginning of the Commonwealth of Australia’s evaluation phase.

Mr Sean Costello, CEO DCNS Australia, said “DCNS acknowledges the dedication from hundreds of people in France and Australia to the development of the Shortfin Barracuda Block 1A and a sovereign industry in Australia.”

“We have worked as a team to create the best possible solution for Australia’s future.”


27 November 2015

Skuadron Serbu 13 TNI AD Siap Beroperasi

27 November 2015

Skuadron Serbu 13 TNI AD berlokasi di Tanjung Redeb, Berau, Kalimantan Timur (photo : Kaskus Militer)

TANJUNG REDEB- Dibangun sejak beberapa tahun lalu, Skuadron Serbu 13 yang ditempatkan di Bandar Udara (Bandara) Kalimarau telah siap dioperasikan. Sesuai jadwal yang ditetapkan, pengoperasian dilaksanakan pada triwulan I tahun 2016 mendatang.

Keberadaan Skuadron Serbu 13 tersebut dipaparkan di depan Komandan Pusat Penerbangan Angkatan Darat (Danpus Penerbad) Brigjen TNI Benny Susianto dan Penjabat (Pj) Bupati Berau Syarifuddin. Berikut  pejabat terkait di jajaran Pemkab Berau, bertempat di Ruang Kakaban Setkab Berau, Kamis (26/11).

Skuadron Serbu 13 yang dibangun di area eks terminal lama Bandara Kalimarau tersebut sudah dilengkapi Shelter 1 unit, apron 1 unit, markas komando (mako) 1 unit, hanggar 1 unit, gudang har 1 unit, barak siaga 1 unit, mes perwira 1 unit, rumah dinas komandan 1 unit dan rumah dinas wakil komandan 1 unit. Kesiapan personel pun sudah dilakukan, termasuk alutsista yang akan ditempatkan di skuadron serbu 13. Dalam presentasi Skuadron Serbu 13, juga disampaikan usulan untuk logo dari skuadron yang akan diambil dari daerah ini.

Komandan Pusat Penerbang Angkatan Darat (Penerbad) Brigjen TNI Benny Susianto mengatakan, pengembangan skuadron terus dilakukan dengan pemenuhan fasilitas. Keberadaan skuadron ini nantinya tak hanya untuk TNI, tetapi juga masyarakat dan pemerintah Kabupaten Berau. Beberapa event bisa digelar di skuadron ini. Saat ini menurut Benny, yang dipersiapkan adalah pembangunan asrama  prajurit. Pihaknya sudah mendapat lokasi yang dinilai sangat strategis, baik untuk kawasan pemukiman maupun jarak tempuh menuju kawasan skuadron.

“Untuk itu, saya berharap mendapat dukungan dari Pemerintah Kabupaten Berau dalam rencana pengembangan ini. Kami menyampaikan terima kasih kepada Pemkab Berau yang telah mendukung pembangunan skuadron ini,” ungkapnya.

Sedangkan Pj Bupati Berau Syarifuddin, menyebutkan, Pemkab Berau memberikan dukungan penuh keberadaan Skuadron Serbu 13 yang dibangun di daerah ini. Menurutnya skuadron tempur ini sangat penting dan strategis. Tak hanya memberikan jaminan keamanan wilayah dan masyarakat, namun keberadaan Skuadron ini juga memberikan dampak terhadap pertumbuhan pada sektor sektor lain di Bumi Batiwakkal, termasuk sektor perekonomian.

“Pemerihtah Kabupatan Berau memberikan dukungan penuh dalam pembangunan Skuadron Serbu 13 di daerah ini,” ucapnya. 

(Kaltim Post)

KAI Makes First Delivery of Fighter Jets to the Philippines

27 November 2015

First two of PAF F/A-50 fighter trainer aircraft (photos : KAI)

KAI makes first delivery of fighter jets to the Philippines

Korea Aerospace Industries Ltd., South Korea's sole aircraft manufacturer, said Friday that it has made the first delivery of its multi-mission jets to the Philippines, further solidifying its status as an aircraft exporter.
The two FA-50PH took off from Sacheon, 437 kilometers south of Seoul, to make the 2,482 kilometer "ferry flight" to the Philippines. The pair are expected to arrive at Clark Air Base on Saturday, KAI said.
The ferry flight involves the planes being directly flown to their destination and could involve making stops to refuel.
KAI said such delivery methods require careful planning because it has to take into consideration weather conditions and transit through airspace regulated by other countries.
The two planes are part of a $420 million government-to-government deal inked between Seoul and Manila that calls for the export of 12 FA-50PHs. 
The two-seat supersonic jets are variants of the FA-50 light attack fighters in service with the South Korean Air Force. The planes that are derived from the T-50 advanced trainer can be armed with air-to-air heat seeking missiles, bombs and rockets, and have an automatic cannon.

KAI said that the first transfer adheres to pre-arranged delivery scheduled with the remaining 10 aircraft to be delivered by 2017. The 12 FA-50PHs will be the first supersonic jets used by the Philippines Air Force since they retired their fleet of F-5s.
"Meeting the delivery time will enhance the trust and confidence of customers," the aerospace company said. KAI was able to meet the delivery schedule when it sold 16 T-16 jets to Indonesia. 
The company then said it is working to meet the delivery schedules for orders secured from Iraq and Thailand.
KAI has so far received 133 plane orders from Indonesia, Turkey, Peru, Iraq and Thailand for both the T-50 series jets and the KT-1 tandem, prop-driven basic trainers. These orders are worth some $3.3 billion.
The company said it is negotiating with Peru and Botswana to sell the T-50 jets, as well as seeking new customers in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America for the KT-1. (Korea Herald)

DND Plans to Base FA-50PHs in Pampanga, Zambales, Palawan

Manila (PNA) - The Department of National Defense (DND) is planning to base its brand-new South Korean-made FA-50PHs jet aircraft in air facilities in Pampanga, Zambales and Palawan.

This was revealed by DND Secretary Voltaire Gazmin Thursday.

He added that this is possible due to the proximity of existing airbases in Subic Bay, Zambales and Pampanga.

Another possible base is Puerto Princesa, Palawan.

Gazmin did not give the reasons why these locations were being looked into as possible FA-50PH staging areas but military sources said this is due to provinces' proximity to the West Philippine Sea where the country is now engaged in a territorial dispute with China

Two FA-50PHs are scheduled to be delivered at Clark Air Base, Angeles City, Pampanga this coming Saturday.

The DND signed a Php18.9 billion contract deal with Korea Aerospace Industries last March 2014.

The contract is for 12 FA-50PH jet aircraft.

Gazmin said the maintenance of the planes is covered within the contract.

He added that three Philippine Air Force pilots have already completed FA-50PH training with KAI and will be helping to train new pilots to man the brand-new jet.

And upon arrival of the two jets Saturday, the DND chief said the aircraft will undergo a series of flight and acceptance tests before being commissioned into service.

Gazmin added that the FA-50PH is dual-capable meaning it can be utilized for training and fighter missions.

Another procurement program is now underway to equip the planes with weapons.


Australia Releases Submarine Combat System Integrator RfP to US Companies

27 November 2015

RFP for Combat system integration was released to Raytheon and Lockheed Martin  (photo : cotsjournal)

A limited request for proposal (RfP) for the role of combat systems integrator for Australia's Future Submarine programme was released to US contractors Raytheon and Lockheed Martin in early November and will close on 1 April 2016, sources told IHS Jane's on 26 November.

The sources said that both companies would be submitting information to the Sea 1000 programme office in two tranches.

The Royal Australian Navy's (RAN's) Sea 1000 programme head Rear Admiral Greg Sammut told a briefing at the Pacific 2015 maritime defence and security exposition in Sydney in October that the choice of combat system integrator would be disclosed well ahead of the selection of an international partner to deliver a replacement programme for the RAN's six-strong Collins-class conventional submarine fleet.


Japan Weighing Exporting MSDF Trainer Planes to Philippines

27 November 2015

Beechcraft TC-9, in JMSDF used for training (photo : contrailahoya)

Japan is considering offering training aircraft to the Philippines, which would mark the first time it has exported used defense equipment overseas.

If realized, the shipment of aircraft to the Philippines is seen as a way of strengthening Japan's ties with Southeast Asian nations through defense cooperation in light of China’s maritime advances.

The move comes in the wake of the Abe administration's decision last year to scrap the long-established “Three Principles on Arms Exports" and replace it with the "Three Principles for the Transfer of Defense Equipment and Technology," a rule that approves the export of arms under certain conditions.

The government is considering sending secondhand TC-90 twin-engine turboprop aircraft, which were used by the Maritime Self-Defense Force for training, to the Philippines. Tokyo has no idea how Manila will use the aircraft.

It is likely the TC-90s could be used for patrol missions over disputed waters in the South China Sea where Beijing has been constructing man-made islands.