L&T, Navantia propose S-80 submarine design for India's P-75(I)
11 July 2023
by Ridzwan Rahmat
An artist's impression of the S-80 submarine that L&T and Navantia have offered for India's P-75(I). (Navantia)
Indian engineering firm Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has formed a teaming arrangement with Spanish shipbuilder Navantia to offer the latter's S-80 submarine design for India's Project-75 (India) or P-75(I) programme.
India has a longstanding requirement for six new air independent propulsion (AIP)-equipped diesel-electric submarines (SSKs), and the contract for these boats is expected to be India's largest defence acquisition project given its estimated value of about EUR4.8 billion (USD5.26 billion).
The shipbuilding contract will be followed by a 30-year life-cycle sustainment contract, and this is expected to feature a similar contract value.
As part of efforts to transfer shipbuilding expertise to the local industry, teaming arrangements bidding for the P-75(I) programme must feature an Indian bidder and a foreign collaborator. L&T and Navantia had earlier signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) in April 2023 to collaborate on the programme.
Defence acquisition jumps ahead across Europe in 2022, but research lags
04 December 2023
by Brooks Tigner & Rebecca Landriani
Total defence investment by EU countries, 2014–33. (Janes)
Total defence spending across the European Union (EU) in 2022 was EUR240 billion (USD260.6 billion) – a 6% increase compared to 2021 and a record high in absolute terms for the 27 countries, according to the European Defence Agency's (EDA's) new annual report Defence Data 2022: Key findings and analysis. However, that figure equalled only 1.5% of the countries' collective GDP and thus fell well short of the 2% of their GDP or EUR361 billion they should have spent on defence in 2022.
Despite the rising expenditure, “we have key capability gaps and continue to lag behind other global players in spending”, High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell said in a statement accompanying the report. “We must find extra value in our ability to co-operate and seize the opportunities to strengthen our armed forces through common planning, shared projects, and joint procurements.”
Observing that defence budgets across Europe continue to “evolve rapidly in response to Russia's war of aggression against Ukraine”, the 20-page report points above all to EU countries' rising investment in defence equipment and systems.
Parting shot: PAF inducts JF-17 Block III aircraft
01 December 2023
by Akhil Kadidal
The Block III version of the Pakistan-China-developed JF-17 fighter aircraft includes several improvements over earlier aircraft, according to the Pakistan Air Force. (Janes)
The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) has started to induct into service the latest version of the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC)/Chengdu Aircraft Corporation (CAC) JF-17 ‘Thunder' fighter aircraft.
The PAF said in mid-November that the new Block III aircraft provides the PAF with several improved capabilities over the earlier Block II version. These include, it said, “superior manoeuvrability, extended range, and enhanced combat capabilities”.
Other enhancements include a reduction in the aircraft's radar cross-section, a result of greater use of composites, and improved avionics. State-run broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) said in September the aircraft has also been equipped with an active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar.
This radar system appears to be the Nanjing Research Institute of Electronics Technology (NRIET) KLJ-7A X-band airborne 3D fire-control radar (FCR). The Block II version is equipped with the KLJ-7 V2.
According to the US Department of Defense (DoD), the KLJ-7 V2 radar can detect an aircraft with a radar cross-section of 3 m
Lockheed Martin flies first production F-35s equipped with TR-3 upgrade
30 November 2023
by Zach Rosenberg
US Air Force F-35A Lightning II. F-35 deliveries with TR-3 upgrades are scheduled to begin as soon as April 2024. (US Air Force/Staff Sgt Zade Vadnais)
Lockheed Martin has flown the first production F-35s equipped with Technology Refresh 3 (TR-3) hardware and software upgrades, the manufacturer confirmed on 28 November. F-35 deliveries to customers have been paused until TR-3 is judged to be sufficiently mature.
“We are now flying TR-3 software on F-35 production jets in Fort Worth and flight test continues at Edwards Air Force Base and Naval Air Station Patuxent River,” the company told
on 28 November.
The TR-3 software upgrade first flew in January 2023 aboard a US Air Force test aircraft at Edwards Air Force Base. The US Department of Defense's F-35 Joint Program Office (JPO) declined to specify the number of F-35s flying with TR-3 today, citing operational security.
“The JPO and Lockheed Martin agree that the acceptance of TR-3 aircraft should fall in the April 2024 to June 2024 timeframe based on risks as we understand them today,” the JPO told
on 28 November.
Claire Chu, Janes senior China analyst joins Harry Kemsley and Sean Corbett to discuss how China's economic activity projects influence globally and what she learnt as part of the recent US Congressional staff delegation to China.