• Pentagon faces major cost increase on F-35 Block 4 modernisation

    Key Points The Pentagon is facing a major potential F-35 Block 4/C2D2 cost increase This could add between USD6.9 billion and USD12.5 billion more to the Pentagon’s most expensive platform The Pentagon is facing a cost increase for what was known as Block 4 modernisation of the Lockheed

  • Brazilian Army eyes US SuperCobra helicopters

    The Brazilian Army has contacted the US government to inquire about possibly buying surplus US Marine Corps (USMC) Bell AH-1W SuperCobra attack helicopters, the army told Jane’s . No government-to-government talks have yet been scheduled. The United States recently announced plans to sell

  • Indonesia confirms A400M acquisition plan

    The Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara: TNI-AU) has confirmed its plans to procure the Airbus Defence and Space (DS) A400M transport aircraft. The service announced on 7 March that it is to acquire two aircraft to support the civil government in transporting supplies

  • Pakistan says it downed another Indian surveillance UAV

    The Pakistani military announced on 6 March that its army troops shot down what it claimed was an Indian unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that illegally entered Pakistani airspace across the line of control (LoC) in the disputed northern region of Kashmir. Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the

  • CH-53K marks heavy-lift milestone

    The Sikorsky CH-53K King Stallion has passed a further developmental milestone, with the announcement on 7 March of the first external lift of a 36,000 lb (16,329 kg) load. During the event, which took place at the Sikorsky Development Flight Center in Florida, the CH-53K lifted the single-hooked

  • AeroVironment contracted to supply Puma AE UAS to Middle East customer

    AeroVironment (AV) has been awarded USD44.5 million to supply its RQ-20B Puma II AE unmanned aircraft system (UAS) to a Middle East contract, the company announced on 6 March. The contract, which is the largest such award so far received by AV, is for an unnamed “major” Middle Eastern

  • AMISOM now operating Aerostar UAVs

    The United States formally handed over an unmanned aerial intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) system to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on 26 February. The event took place at the Baledogle (Bahle Dogli) airfield in Lower Shabelle region. A US Department of State

  • PAF equips SAR squadron with AW139 helicopter, says report

    The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has equipped its No 88 search-and-rescue (SAR) squadron with the AgustaWestland AW139 multirole twin-engine helicopter, according to a 3 March report by the Associated Press of Pakistan (APP). Citing a PAF press statement, the state-owned media outlet also reported that

  • Russian airlifter crash in Syria claims 32

    A Russian transport aircraft crashed in Syria on 6 March with the loss of all 32 on board, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed. The Antonov An-26 ‘Curl’ twin-engined turboprop came down while attempting to land at Humaymim air base on the Syrian coast, killing the 26 passengers and

  • First contract for Norway’s P-8As awarded

    Norway’s procurement of five Boeing P-8A Poseidon maritime multimission aircraft (MMA) took a major leap forward on 5 March, with a contract awarded for the purchase of long-lead items for each of the platforms. The USD282.3 million contract, which also included long-lead items for the last

  • ST Kinetics pursues weaponised multirotor UAV development

    ST Kinetics, the land systems and speciality vehicles arm of Singapore Technologies Engineering (ST Engineering) has commenced development of weaponised tactical air and ground vehicles with the aim of demonstrating advanced prototypes by the end of 2019. The company has commenced work on the

  • Saudi production of An-132D takes step forward

    Antonov, Taqnia Aeronautics, and Wahaj have signed an agreement to jointly manufacture the An-132D multi-purpose transport aircraft. The modernised version of the An-132 is being co-developed by Ukrainian company Antonov and Saudi Arabia’s King Abdulaziz City for Science and Technology

  • USMC prepares for F-35B maiden operational embarkation

    The US Marine Corps (USMC) is in the final stages of preparation for the first operational shipborne embarkation of the Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF), with the arrival of an advance detachment of aircraft on USS Wasp (LHD-1) on 5 March. An undisclosed number of the

  • Aero Vodochody plans first L-39NG flight by end of 2018

    Senior management of Czech aircraft maker Aero Vodochody announced on 27 February that final assembly of the first operational prototype of the L-39NG Next Generation jet trainer aircraft should be completed by the third quarter of 2018, with the first test flight expected in the fourth quarter.

  • China’s CASC readies improved CH-4 UAV

    China Academy of Aerospace Aerodynamics (CAAA), the flight technology development arm of defence prime China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CASC), is developing a new and more capable variant of its strike-capable Cai Hong 4 (Rainbow 4, or CH-4) medium-altitude, long-endurance

  • UAE orders Insitu Integrator UAVs

    The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has ordered Insitu Integrator unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), it was announced during the Unmanned System Exhibition (UMEX) held in Abu Dhabi from 25–27 February. The official UMEX spokesperson said the AED22 million (USD6.0 million) deal covered four

  • US Navy launches Super Hornet SLEP

    The US Navy (USN) has launched a service life extension programme (SLEP) for its fleet of Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet combat aircraft, the Department of Defense (DoD) disclosed on 28 February. The Naval Air Systems Command has awarded Boeing a USD73.2 million contract to increase the airframe

  • Russia develops future combat aircraft

    The Russian Ministry of Defence’s Main Armament Executive is directing research and development work on a next-generation shipborne fighter and a long-range supersonic unmanned combat aerial vehicle (UCAV), the ministry-affiliated Zvezda TV channel reported on 24 February. Nikolay Maksimov,

  • Argentine MoD, FAdeA reach deal for three Pampa IIIs

    A contract for three FAdeA IA-63 Pampa III advanced training aircraft for the Argentine Air Force was approved on 23 February, according to the official bulletin of the Chief of the Cabinets of Ministers. The USD30.3 million contract was paid half up-front and the remainder is to be disbursed as

  • India’s LCA Tejas demonstrates hot refuelling capability

    India’s locally designed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) has demonstrated its hot refuelling capability, the state-owned Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) announced on 27 February: a move that brings the platform closer to achieving final operational clearance (FOC). HAL carried out a hot

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