• BAE Systems begins new round of CFT trials for Typhoon

    BAE Systems is currently assessing the aerodynamic characteristics of conformal fuel tanks (CFTs) for the Eurofighter Typhoon combat aircraft, the company announced on 22 April. Wind tunnel trials of the twin 'shoulder-mounted' blister tanks are now being held to accelerate the clearance processes

  • Sikorsky demonstrates optionally piloted Black Hawk

    Sikorsky has conducted the first flight of its Optionally-Piloted Black Hawk (OPBH) helicopter during a demonstration at its West Palm Beach facility in Florida, the company announced on 21 April. The flight took place at Sikorsky's Development Flight Center on 11 March and saw the OPBH demonstrate autonomous hover and flight operations while under the control of a man-portable ground control station (GCS). This demonstration was an important milestone in the Manned/Unmanned Resupply Aerial

  • Almaz-Antey eyes Indian partnerships

    Almaz-Antey is in discussions with potential Indian business partners for joint production of air traffic control (ATC) hardware and software, the Russian company disclosed on 23 April. This follows remarks from Almaz-Antey's director general, Alexander Vedrov, that Indian civil aviation companies

  • Antonov workers call for chairman's reinstatement

    Workers at Ukrainian aircraft manufacturer Antonov have called on the country's interim government to cancel a decree sacking the state-owned company's chairman. At a worker's meeting held on 18 April, trade union representatives reiterated their support for outgoing Chairman Dmitry Kiva and called

  • China looks to market listing of military R&D units

    China is reported to be drawing up plans to transform some of its state-run military research and development (R&D) institutes into listed companies as part of its long-standing commitment to promote self-sufficiency within its national defence industrial base. Local reports suggest the

  • F-35's programme costs decreasing, but acquisition costs are up, Pentagon report shows

    Key Points The procurement cost increase was caused by rising labour costs and the decision to defer airplane procurement to later years in the programme. As a result, the programme's total cost is not coming down as fast the Pentagon would like. An annual acquisition report to the US Congress

  • HIT reveals new information on Al Khalid-I MBT

    Officials from Pakistan's Heavy Industries Taxila (HIT) disclosed new information about the greatly anticipated Al Khalid-Improved (I) main battle tank (MBT) during the recent DSA 2014 exhibition held in Kuala Lumpur. Brigadier Ghulam Murtaza Qureshi (rtd), HIT's director of budget, marketing and

  • iRobot reports revenue rise but lower earnings

    US robotics company iRobot saw its revenue increase from USD106.2 million in Q1 2013 to USD114.2 million in Q1 2014, although profit fell from USD8.4 million to USD5.3 million, primarily as a result of greater R&D spending and higher income tax charges. According to iRobot's Q1 2014 results,

  • Jacobs Engineering to acquire Federal Network Systems

    Jacobs Engineering announced on 22 April that it has entered into an agreement to acquire Verizon Communications subsidiary Federal Network Systems (FNS). The acquisition, for an undisclosed amount, is expected to take place by September 2014. According to Jacobs Group Vice President Robert

  • Safran reports revenues rise for the first quarter

    French aerospace firm Safran increased its revenue by 3.3% in the first quarter of 2014 due to strong growth in its civil businesses, Safran announced on 23 April. Total sales increased from EUR3.33 billion (USD4.6 billion) in the first quarter of 2013 to EUR3.44 billion in 2014, with sales in

  • Australia signs up for 58 more F-35s

    Australia is to buy 58 more Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters (JSFs) at a cost of AUD12.4 billion (USD11.4 billion), Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced on 23 April. Together with the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF's) 24 in-service Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet strike

  • UPDATE: Striking distance - Increasing attacks on Israel's northern border

    Key Points An Israeli air strike in February against a Hizbullah target on Lebanese territory spurred the Lebanese Shia group to launch its first direct, albeit unclaimed, attacks against the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) since the end of the July-August 2006 war. Hizbullah has chosen the Golan

  • Al Seer Marine targets Southeast Asian demand for USVs

    Abu Dhabi-based marine company Al Seer Marine Supplies & Equipment is forecasting strong demand for unmanned surface vessels (USVs) efforts in the Southeast Asian region and stepping up its marketing efforts in the area. Al Seer distributes USVs built by marine robotics company 5G International

  • Algeria's low voter turnout and increasingly co-ordinated civil society indicate high instability risks post-poll

    Key Points There is unlikely to be sufficient mass civil mobilisation behind a particular candidate or party to credibly reject the election results. Low turnout indicates severe disaffection with the political system, meaning protests would more likely be initially triggered by material factors

  • Cargo and NGOs at risk as South Sudanese rebel offensive intensifies during rainy season

    EVENT Ousted Vice-President and leader of the South Sudan armed opposition, Riek Machar, announced the formation of a formal armed resistance against President Salva Kiir Mayardit's government on 21 April. Machar's announcement follows the largest outbreak of inter-ethnic violence since the onset

  • Communist party ejects former defence company chairman

    A former senior executive of a defence industrial group in China has been expelled from the ruling communist party for alleged corruption while in office, the party's anti-graft agency said on 21 April. The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said that Huang Xiaohu, former chairman of the

  • Congolese president's plans to revise constitution raise risks of demonstrations and violence in one-year outlook

    EVENT Mantina Moukietou, leader of the women's wing of the Congolese opposition party Convention for Action, Democracy and Development (Convention pour l'action, la démocratie et le développement: CADD), was arrested on 4 April after accusing the government of acquiring arms to

  • French Navy ships heading to Brazil for exercises

    France's FS Mistral (L 9013) projection and command ship and FS La Fayette (F 710) frigate are to make port in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, between 24-29 April for joint training events, a Brazilian Navy spokesperson told IHS Jane's . The training is to run 29-30 April and comprise a passing exercise

  • India appoints new naval chief

    Vice-Admiral Rabindra 'Robin' K Dhowan was formally appointed as the Indian Navy (IN) Chief of Staff on 17 April, seven weeks after his predecessor resigned following a submarine accident in which two officers died. Adm Dhowan, who was made the acting IN chief after Admiral D K Joshi resigned on 26

  • Lockheed Martin profits up on reduced sales in Q1

    Lockheed Martin has reported a 4% decline in net sales for Q1 2014, but a 22.6% gain in profits in its first quarter 2014 financial results, released on 22 April. Net sales of USD10.7 billion fell from USD11.07 billion in Q1 2013, but net earnings climbed from USD761 million to USD933 million in