The M-345 is billed as having the capabilities of a jet trainer with the operating costs of a turboprop. (Leonardo)
Leonardo is pitching its M-345 High Efficiency Trainer (HET) to Slovakia as a potential replacement for the country's Aero L-39CM/L-39ZAM advanced jet trainer aircraft.
The Slovak Air Force (Vzdušné sily Slovenskej Republiky: VSR) has a requirement to replace its small fleet of Czechoslovak-era Aero L-39CM/L-39ZAMs with up to eight new advanced jet trainer aircraft as it prepares to receive its new Lockheed Martin F-16V Block 70/72 Fighting Falcon combat aircraft from 2023.
reported in August 2019, the three L-39CM and two L-39ZAM aircraft received in 1972 and 1976, respectively, cannot be sustained beyond 2025, meaning the VSR has an urgent requirement to replace these in the short term.
RAF continues roll-out of A400M capabilities with first operational aerial refuelling
11 August 2022
by Gareth Jennings
The view of the A400M receiver aircraft from the Voyager mission controller console. (Crown Copyright)
The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) is continuing the process of rolling out the capabilities of the Airbus A400M C1 Atlas, announcing on 11 August the first operational aerial refuelling of the airlifter.
For the milestone, an A400M received fuel from an Airbus Voyager KC3 tanker via the centreline hose reserved for large aircraft receivers. The airlifter was refuelled 900 n miles southwest of Ascension Island, extending its 4,100 n miles range to accommodate the remaining 2,600 n miles to Mount Pleasant Airfield on the Falkland Islands.
“The execution of long-range air-to-air refuelling by front-line crews is a major milestone for Atlas. The ability of this aircraft to operate at significant range from the UK, demonstrates our enhanced and resilient force sustainment capabilities,” said Wing Commander Stuart Patton, Officer Commanding 30 Squadron.
Update: Taiwan reports underplay ‘hundreds' of PLA aircraft in live-fire drills
10 August 2022
by Akhil Kadidal
Taiwan said that the PLA flew 49aircraft into the Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) on 5 August whereas China has said that it is flying ‘hundreds' of aircraft into the ADIZ. (VCG via Getty Images)
China says it is dispatching hundreds of combat aircraft to the six live-fire zones around Taiwan. However, Taipei's daily air incursion reports show smaller figures.
assesses that this could partly be because of strains on the country's radar network.
China launched a four-day live-fire exercise around Taiwan from 4 August, in response to a visit by US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on 2 August.
On the first day of the drills, the People's Liberation Army's (PLA's) Eastern Theatre Command said that it had “dispatched hundreds of fighters, bombers, and other multitype [aircraft] to the airspace in the north, southwest, and southeast of Taiwan Island”.
The PLA added that the aircraft are conducting “day and night” joint reconnaissance flights, air assault training, and support flights. All six live-fire zones are within Taiwan's Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ).
Chinese UAVs continue Taiwan incursions, says Taipei
10 August 2022
by Oishee Majumdar & Akshara Parakala
Norinco's Loitering Dragon FL5A (pictured above) is one of the UAVs identified by
in a propaganda video released by the PLA against the backdrop of its military exercises around Taiwan since 4 August.
Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) said the country continues to face incursions by Chinese unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) even after a series of live-fire drills conducted by the People's Liberation Army (PLA) came to an end on 7 August.
The Kinmen Defense Command of the Republic of China Army (RoCA) announced on 10 August that one batch and one sortie of unidentified UAVs had entered over “the restricted waters” of the Beiding Island in Taiwan's Kinmen County on the evening of 9 August.
The RoCA troops stationed in the area fired flares to warn off the UAVs in accordance with standard operating procedures, the command said.
The MND has assured that the RoCA is capable of swiftly responding to such threats.
In this episode of The World of Intelligence we speak with Neil Spencer on the value of OSINT in the commercial sector.
Neil Spencer is the Director of Strategy and Partnerships for LifeRaft. He has more than twenty years of security indust...