Air news

Switzerland signs Air2030 contracts

By Gareth Jennings 29 November 2021
Having made its selection of the F-35A (pictured) and Patriot earlier in 2021, Switzerland has now signed contracts for both systems. (Commonwealth of Australia)  Switzerland has signed for both the Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II and the Raytheon Patriot ground-based air-defence systems (GBADS) to fulfil its Air2030 requirement.  The Federal Council announced the milestones on 26 November, some five months after the country announced its decision in July to procure 36 F-35As and five Patriot GBADS based on the highest overall benefits for...

Turkey to export Anka UAVs to Kazakhstan

By Lale Sariibrahimoglu 29 November 2021
Turkish Aerospace (TA) will deliver three Anka medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) and two ground control stations to Kazakhstan by 2023, the company tweeted from its official social media account on 27 November....

Berlin Security Conference 2021: Lockheed Martin confident STH timeline for Germany can still be met

By Gareth Jennings 25 November 2021
The CH-53K was displayed at the last ILA Berlin Airshow in 2018. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Lockheed Martin is confident that the Bundeswehr's latest schedule for its Schwere Transporthubschrauber (STH) heavy-lift helicopter programme can still be met, should the protest being heard in the German courts progress in a timely manner.    Speaking to   Janes   at the Berlin Security Conference (BSC) 2021, company officials said that the timeline of a contract signature in 2023 and deliveries beginning in about 2026 is still tenable s...

NASA launches DART on planetary defence trial

By Nick Brown 25 November 2021
A Falcon 9 launches from Vandenberg Space Force Base in California, carrying the DART spacecraft on its terminal mission to the Didymos binary asteroid system. (NASA)  A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket lifted NASA's Double Asteroid Redirection Test (DART) mission payload out of Vandenberg Space Force Base in California on 24 November 2021, the first tangible mission under the US banner of ‘planetary defense'.  The spacecraft is on a circa10-month journey to cover the 6.8 million miles to the binary asteroid system Didymos, where it will deliberately i...

Brazil receives series-production F-39 Gripen fighters

By Victor Barreira 25 November 2021
The four series-production F-39E fighters received by Brazil on 24 November join the F-39E FTI aircraft received in 2019. (Sgt Bianca/FAB)  The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) has achieved a major milestone in the ambitious and complex effort to modernise its air combat capability with the formal receipt of an initial four series-production Saab F-39E Gripen multimission fighters.  The jets were accepted by FAB Commander Lieutenant Brigadier Carlos de Almeida Baptista Junior at the Saab Aeronautics plant in Linköping, Sweden, on 24 November.  The a...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: ESG to adapt Israeli combat cloud for Germany

By Gareth Jennings 25 November 2021
The already operationally proven OPAL combat cloud will form the basis of the NEOS system that ESG is to develop for Germany. (IAI via Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Elektroniksystem und Logistik (ESG) is to adapt an operationally proven Israeli combat cloud to the needs of the Bundeswehr, the German electronics and mission systems specialist announced on 24 November.  Speaking at the Berlin Security Conference, ESG's director of business development and sales, Simon Volkmann, said that the company is to utilise the Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI)...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: MBDA in dialogue with Germany for Enforcer Air missile for helicopters

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
MBDA continues to pitch its Enforcer missile to the German government as a possible air-to-surface solution for helicopters. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)  MBDA is continuing talks with the German government over the possible acquisition of the helicopter-launched Enforcer Air precision-guided missile, as deliveries of the baseline shoulder-launched version are set to commence.    Speaking to   Janes   at the Berlin Security Conference 2021, Head of Sales and Marketing, Guido Brendler, said MBDA continues to pitch Enforcer Air to Ger...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: Germany shows interest in Apache gunship

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
Germany has requested information on the Apache, as it considers its future attack helicopter plans. (US Army)  Germany has expressed its interest in the Boeing AH-64 Apache, issuing the US government with a request for information (RFI) on the helicopter gunship.    Speaking to   Janes  at the Berlin Security Conference in the German capital, a senior company official confirmed that an RFI had been received from the Bundeswehr and that it had been responded to.   “Just prior to Covid [in early 2020], the German government...

Berlin Security Conference: Spain considers Eurofighter, F-35 for Hornet, Harrier replacement

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
Spain has a need to replace its Hornet (pictured) and Harrier aircraft, for which both the Eurofighter and F-35 are being considered. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Spain has requested information on both the Eurofighter Typhoon and Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II as potential replacements for its current Boeing EF-18 Hornet and McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier II aircraft.    The Spanish Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed to   Janes  ahead of the Berlin Security Conference that it has issued requests for information (RFIs) for bo...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: United States becomes observer of NATO NGRC rotorcraft effort

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
The US is now observing the European effort to develop a new medium-lift rotorcraft capability to replace the fleet of Merlin (pictured) and other helicopter types from the mid-2030s. (Janes/Patrick Allen)  The United States has been added to the list of observer nations of NATO's Next-Generation Rotorcraft Capability (NGRC) effort to develop a new vertical-lift platform.  Announced by the NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) at the Berlin Security Conference (BSC) 2021, the move sees the US join two other European NATO countries as obs...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: MBDA, IAI sign ground-based air defence agreement for Germany

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
MBDA and Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) have concluded a framework agreement for co-operation on ground-based air-defence systems for Germany.  Under the agreement, which was announced on 24 November at the Berlin Security Conference 2021, both...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: Hearing of STH protest may pave way for progress in German heavy-lift helicopter programme

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
The King Stallion (foreground) and Chinook (background) appeared together at the last ILA Berlin Airshow in 2018. Both are competing Germany's STH heavy-lift helicopter requirement. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Germany's Schwere Transporthubschrauber (STH) heavy lift helicopter programme could proceed once the protest from one of the two bidders is heard on 24 November.    Boeing's vice president for the Defense, Space & Security division in Germany told   Janes   ahead of the Berlin Security Conference that as soon as the protest...

South Korea announces development of conformal antenna for stealth aircraft

By Alessandra Giovanzanti 24 November 2021
South Korea's Agency for Defense Development (ADD) announced on 23 November that it has developed a new conformal antenna design to improve the low-visibility profile of stealth aircraft.  The agency said in a statement that it had succeeded in loc...

Berlin Security Conference 2021: Germany likely to issue letter of request for Super Hornet, Growler in January

By Gareth Jennings 24 November 2021
Germany is expected to acquire the Super Hornet (pictured) and the Growler to partially satisfy the Luftwaffe's Tornado replacement requirement. (Janes/Patrick Allen)  Germany is expected to issue a letter of request (LOR) to the US government in the coming weeks, as it seeks to procure the Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler aircraft.    Vice president, Boeing Defense, Space & Security Germany, Michael Hostetter, told   Janes   that the LOR that would move the intended sale forward is likely to be issued in Janua...

PLAAF 25th Air Brigade now operates J-10C multirole fighters

By Alessandra Giovanzanti 23 November 2021
A J-10C multirole fighter aircraft on display at the China International Aviation & Aerospace Exhibition 2021. The 25th Air Brigade with the PLA's ETC has been identified as operating the WS10-powered J-10C variant as of November 2021. (VCG via Getty Images)  The People's Liberation Army Air Force's (PLAAF's) 25th Air Brigade, part of the PLA's Eastern Theater Command (ETC), is replacing its legacy Chengdu Aircraft Industry Group J-7E fighters with J-10C multirole fighter aircraft fitted with locally made Shenyang-Liming WS10 ‘Taihang'-series...

RAAF receives last batch of F-35A Joint Strike Fighters for 2021

By Alessandra Giovanzanti 23 November 2021
One of the three new F-35A Lightning II aircraft that arrived at RAAF Base Williamtown on 18 November, bringing the total number of F-35s in the country to 44. (Australian Department of Defence)  The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has received the last three new Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters scheduled for delivery in 2021, bringing the in-country total to 44.  The aircraft, which arrived at RAAF Base Williamtown near Sydney on 18 November, have been accepted by No 77 Squadron after completing a journey from Eglin...

Slovenia signs for C-27J Spartan

By Igor Bozinovski 23 November 2021
Slovenia and Italy signed a government-to-government agreement in Rome on 17 November for a C-27J Spartan transport aircraft for the Slovenian Armed Forces. (Janes/Patrick Allen)  Slovenian Defence Minister Matej Tonin and his Italian counterpart, Lorenzo Guerini, signed a government-to-government agreement in Rome on 17 November for a C-27J Spartan tactical transport aircraft for the Slovenian Armed Forces, the Slovenian government announced on its website the next day.  Worth EUR72 million (more than USD81 million), the agreement covers the...

NATO condemns Russian ASAT test

By Nicholas Fiorenza 23 November 2021
NATO's North Atlantic Council (NAC) has condemned Russia's 15 November anti-satellite (ASAT) test, describing it as “reckless and irresponsible”, in a 19 November press release.  The NAC, the alliance's highest decision making body, said the test...

Israel identifies Iran's ‘deniable' UAV

By Jeremy Binnie 22 November 2021
A Samad-3 long-range UAV displayed in Yemen in July 2019. Israel has now linked the type to the Iranian company KIPAS. (Ansar Allah)  Israel has named a type of unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that has been used by Iranian-backed groups in Yemen and Iraq to carry out attacks as the KAS-04 made by Iran's Kimia Part Sivan Company (KIPAS).  In a letter to the UN Security Council that was released on 17 November, Israeli Ambassador to the United States Gilad Erdan identified a KAS-04 as the UAV that intruded into Israeli airspace on 18 May.  The I...

Turkey announces Nigerien light aircraft, UAV order

By Lale Sariibrahimoglu 22 November 2021
Turkey will sell Hürkuş light aircraft, Bayraktar TB2 unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and armoured vehicles to Niger, according to a statement released by Turkey's presidential Directorate of Communications on 18 November.  Released after a teleph...
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