Air news

IFC 2022: USAF set to launch A-10 divestment

By Gareth Jennings 17 November 2022
Having been unsuccessful in its previous attempts, the US Air Force now looks set to begin the divestment of its A-10 fleet. (US AIr Force)  The US Air Force (USAF) is set to launch the long-sought divestment of its fleet of Fairchild-Republic A-10 Thunderbolt II ground attack aircraft, with the first aircraft pencilled in to go to the ‘boneyard' in fiscal year (FY) 2023.  Speaking at the IQPC International Fighter conference 2022 (IFC 2022) in Berlin, Lieutenant General Richard Moore, deputy chief of staff for Plans and Programs, said that t...

IFC 2022: France to equip Rafale for SEAD/DEAD mission

By Gareth Jennings 17 November 2022
Drawing on lessons learnt from the Ukraine conflict, the French Air and Space Force is to equip its Rafale fighters with a dedicated SEAD/DEAD capability from 2030. (French Air and Space Force)  France is to equip its Dassault Rafale combat aircraft for the suppression of enemy air defences (SEAD)/destruction of enemy air defences (DEAD) mission from 2030, which was disclosed on 17 November.  Speaking at the IQPC International Fighter Conference 2022 (IFC 2022) in Berlin, Colonel Benjamin Souberbielle, deputy leader of the Future Combat Air S...

IFC 2022: Airbus reveals ‘heavy loyal wingman' concept for FCAS

By Gareth Jennings 17 November 2022
An Airbus briefing slide showing the modular nature of the heavy RC concept. (Airbus via Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Airbus has showcased a new modular concept for an armed ‘heavy loyal wingman' to be operated as part of the wider Future Combat Air System (FCAS).  Shown at the International Fighter Conference 2022 (IFC 2022), taking place in Berlin on 16 November, the Remote Carrier (RC) concept features a common fuselage with interchangeable mission and weapon systems to suit the needs of the mission.  As depicted in the artwork, the heavy RC fe...

Iran blamed for another UAV attack on tanker

By Yaakov Lappin & Jeremy Binnie 17 November 2022
A Shahed-136 flies over Kyiv on 17 October. (Sergei Supinsky/AFP via Getty Images)  Iran used a Shahed-136 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to attack an oil tanker in the Gulf of Oman, an Israeli source told Janes on 16 November.  The source described the attack as the latest in a series of incidents in which Iran has targeted tankers since 2019 and said it was aimed at destabilising the region as the FIFA World Cup begins in Qatar.  The Singapore-based company Eastern Pacific Shipping confirmed its tanker Pacific Zircon had been “hit by a proje...

IFC 2022: Luftwaffe reaffirms F-35A, Eurofighter EK procurement plan

By Gareth Jennings 17 November 2022
The Luftwaffe is to acquire 35 F-35As to partially satisfy its Tornado replacement requirement. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)  The Luftwaffe has restated its earlier declared intent to satisfy its Tornado replacement requirement with Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter and Eurofighter Electronic Combat (Elektronischer Kampf: EK) aircraft, despite recent reports this was being reconsidered because of budgetary pressures.  Speaking at the IQPC International Fighter Conference (IFC) 2022 held in Berlin from 16 to 18 November, the C...

IFC 2022: Lockheed Martin anticipates second wind of F-35 follow-on orders

By Gareth Jennings 17 November 2022
With existing customers such as Australia looking to increase their F-35 (pictured) orders, Lockheed Martin anticipates a potential second wind of sales. (Commonwealth of Australia)  Lockheed Martin anticipates renewed interest in the F-35 Lightning II, driving a surge in follow-on orders for the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF).  Speaking to Janes at the IQPC International Fighter Conference 2022 (IFC 2022) in Berlin, JR McDonald, vice-president of F-35 strategy and business development for the company, said that existing customers are looking to...

Elettronica pitches Edge pod for Eurofighter EK requirement for Germany

By Gareth Jennings 16 November 2022
Elettronica showcased conceptual artwork of its Edge electronic attack pod fitted to the Eurofighter EK, at the IQPC International Fighter Conference 2022 in Berlin. (Elettronica via Janes/Gareth Jennings)  Elettronica is to offer its Edge solution to the Luftwaffe for the new airborne electronic attack (AEA) capability Germany seeks to field on behalf of NATO from 2028.    Speaking to   Janes  at the IQPC International Fighter Conference 2022 in Berlin, Roberto Scotto di Vettimo, Global Sales and Business Development, said th...

Changing the guard: Concern over US withdrawal of F-15 jets from Okinawa

By Akhil Kadidal 16 November 2022
The withdrawal from Okinawa of two USAF squadrons equipped with F-15C Eagles has alarmed US Republican lawmakers who said the move could embolden a militarily resurgent China. (US Air Force photo/Staff Sgt Kyle Johnson)  The withdrawal of two squadrons of US Air Force (USAF) Boeing F-15C fighter jets from Okinawa has prompted concerns of a decline in US force capability in the Indo-Pacific region.  The US Pacific Air Forces (PACAF) announced the withdrawal in a statement on 28 October. “Starting in November [2022] the Department of Defense wi...

RAAF refuels South Korea fighter jet for first time

By Akhil Kadidal 16 November 2022
A Royal Australian Air Force KC-30A Multi Role Tanker Transport refuels a KF-16U Fighting Falcon aircraft of the Republic of Korea Air Force during Exercise ‘Vigilant Storm 23'. (Republic of Korea Air Force)  Weeks after signing a formal arrangement to co-operate on air-to-air refuelling, Australia and South Korea have conducted the first aerial refuel exercise involving military aircraft from both countries.  The Australian Department of Defence (DoD) said on 15 November that a Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Airbus KC-30A Multi Role Tanke...

Indonesia approves USD3.9 billion in foreign loans for fighter aircraft programmes

By Ridzwan Rahmat 15 November 2022
A file image of a Qatar Emiri Air Force (QEAF) Mirage fighter taxiing at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey, in 2011. Indonesia is seeking to procure several airframes from the country as a stopgap measure to fulfil its security requirements. (US Department of Defense)  The Indonesian Ministry of Finance (MoF) has granted approval for the country to obtain up to USD3.9 billion in foreign loans for three separate proposals that have been put forward to sustain the Indonesian Air Force's (TNI-AU's) combat capabilities.  These include a bid to procure M...

First F-35 for Belgium enters assembly

By Gareth Jennings 15 November 2022
The first parts of the first F-35A for Belgium were announced to have entered the assembly line in Texas on 14 November. (Lockheed Martin)  The first Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft for Belgium has entered the Fort Worth assembly line in Texas, the Belgian Ministry of Defence (MoD) announced on 14 November.  The outer wingbox of the first of 34 F-35As for the Belgian Air Component (BAC) entered the assembly line following delivery from Leonardo's F-35 production facility in Cameri, Italy.  As noted by the...

Firm intent: Lockheed Martin leans on local companies to boost Indian F-21 bid

By Akhil Kadidal 15 November 2022
Lockheed Martin's F-21 fighter jet for India is equipped with an advanced electronic warfare system and triple missile launcher adapters. The F-21 also has a dorsal conformal fairing for extra fuel and the integration of specialised domestic systems required by the Indian Air Force. (Lockheed Martin)  Lockheed Martin is leveraging its manufacturing ecosystem in India to support its proposal to supply the Indian Air Force (IAF) with F-21 fighter jets as part of India's Multi-Role Fighter Aircraft (MRFA) acquisition project.  The USD18 billion...

Airshow China 2022: Tsingaero Armament showcases strike-capable JZ-500 UAV

By Akshara Parakala 15 November 2022
Tsingaero Armament strike-capable JZ-500 UAV. (Janes)  Chinese firm Tsingaero Armament showcased its JZ-500, a strike-capable rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), at the Airshow China 2022 exhibition in Zhuhai, which concluded on 13 November.  According to Tsingaero Armament, the JZ-500 can be operated in harsh weather, including rain and snow and wind conditions of up to 24 m/s. It is able to operate in temperatures between -55°C and +50°C.  Design features of the UAV include its pod fuselage, which houses the powerplant, avionics, and...

Six MH-60R multirole helicopters delivered to Indian Navy

By Akhil Kadidal 15 November 2022
Lockheed Martin/Sikorski MH-60Rs destined for the Indian Navy have specialised equipment to fit Indian requirements. This includes domestic IFF and other systems. (Lockheed Martin/Sikorski)  The Indian Navy (IN) has received six Lockheed Martin/Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk anti-submarine warfare and anti-surface warfare helicopters.  William Blair, chief executive for Lockheed Martin India, told Janes that the first three MH-60R multirole helicopters have been delivered to the Indian Navy. The company said that these aircraft are operating at nava...

Airshow China 2022: Tsingaero Armament showcased strike-capable JZ-500 UAV

By Akshara Parakala 14 November 2022
Tsingaero Armament strike-capable JZ-500 UAV. (Janes)  Chinese firm Tsingaero Armament showcased its JZ-500, a strike-capable rotary-wing unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), at the Airshow China 2022 exhibition in Zhuhai, which concluded on 13 November.  According to Tsingaero Armament, the JZ-500 can be operated in harsh weather, including rain and snow and wind conditions of up to 24 m/s. It is able to operate in temperatures between -55°C and +50°C.  Design features of the UAV include its pod fuselage, which houses the powerplant, avionics, and...

Honeywell, PTDI partner to supply collision-avoidance system to Indonesian Air Force

By Oishee Majumdar 11 November 2022
Honeywell has signed an MOU with PTDI to supply its Military Airborne Collision Avoidance System for the Indonesian Air Force's C-130 transport aircraft (pictured). (Jamie Hunter)  Honeywell has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Indonesia's state-owned aircraft manufacturer PT Dirgantara Indonesia (PTDI) for the potential supply of its Military Airborne Collision Avoidance System (MILACAS) for the Indonesian Air Force (Tentara Nasional Indonesia Angkatan Udara: TNI-AU).    The MOU – signed during the Indo Defence 2022 exhib...

Airshow China 2022: China displays thrust vectoring engines

By Akhil Kadidal & Prasobh Narayanan 11 November 2022
The Aero Engine Corporation of China displayed an engine with a 2D thrust vectoring nozzle during Airshow China 2022. The nozzle design appears intended to sustain manoeuvres at low speeds and at very high altitudes. (CFOTO/Future Publishing via Getty Images)  China has displayed two turbofan engines with thrust vectoring control (TVC) nozzles during the Airshow China 2022 exhibition being held in Zhuhai from 8 to 13 November.    Imagery of the state-owned Aero Engine Corporation of China (AECC) pavilion from 9 November showed that six...

Airshow China 2022: AVIC displays Wing Loong-10 in PLAAF colour

By Oishee Majumdar & Akshara Parakala 11 November 2022
China's state-owned AVIC has displayed the Wing Loong-10 UAV (pictured) in PLAAF colour at the Airshow China 2022 exhibition being held in Zhuhai. (Future Publishing via Getty Images)  China's state-owned aerospace and defence prime Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) has displayed the Wing Loong-10 (WL-10) unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) at the Airshow China 2022 exhibition being held in Zhuhai from 8 to 13 November.  WL-10, also dubbed as WZ-10, can be seen in People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) colour at the airshow, suggest...

IOMAX to fit ISR system to new Jordanian Grand Caravans

By Gareth Jennings 11 November 2022
Jordan is to receive two new C-208B Grand Caravans in addition to the six it operates in the ISR role. (Janes/Patrick Allen)  IOMAX is to fit two new Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) Cessna C-208B Grand Caravan EX aircraft with an intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) system, a company spokesperson told Janes on 11 November.  The work will see the two new ‘green' aircraft delivered to IOMAX's Mooresville facility in the US in the late third quarter/early fourth quarter of 2023, at which time they will be fitted with their new I...

Germany begins ‘Quadriga' Eurofighter build

By Gareth Jennings 10 November 2022
The first of 38 centre fuselage sections for Germany's Project Quadriga Eurofighter procurement was rolled out on 9 November. (Luftwaffe via Twitter)  Germany has kick-started the production of 38 Eurofighter combat aircraft under Project ‘Quadriga', with the first centre fuselage section being rolled out on 9 November.  The Luftwaffe announced the milestone, noting that Premium Aerotec had delivered the section about two years after the contract was signed on 12 November 2020, and on schedule to meet the aircraft delivery date of 2025.  “It'...
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