The US Capitol building in Washington, DC. (Getty Images)
The US Senate on 27 July passed a Pentagon-backed bill that would provide USD76 billion to shore up domestic production of semiconductor chips.
The Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors (CHIPS) Act, which the Senate approved by a 64–33 vote, heads to the House of Representatives, which is expected to pass the bill on 28 July. President Joe Biden has indicated he will sign the legislation into law when it reaches his desk.
Proponents say the bill, which has been in the works for years, is needed to reduce US reliance on foreign, potentially unreliable sources of chips used in military weapon systems, automobiles, consumer electronics, and household appliances. The US share of global semiconductor manufacturing capacity plunged from 37% in 1990 to about 12% in 2020 and is forecast to fall to 10% in 2030, according to the Washington, DC-based Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA).
Taiwan initiates mass production of Sky Sword II air-defence system
27 November 2023
by Kapil Kajal
A mock-up of the Sky Sword II missile – locally known as the TC-2 land-based missile – is pictured at TADTE 2023. The missile structure consists of the active radar seeker, followed by the electronics section, proximity fuze, warhead, and rocket motor, ending in the exhaust. (Janes/Kapil Kajal)
Taiwan's state-owned National Chung-Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST) has started the mass production of its land-based short-to-medium-range air-defence capability known as the Sky Sword II (locally termed Tien Chien II), a Republic of China Army (RoCA) officer told Janes on 27 November.
The mass production has begun in order to meet the RoCA requirement for six Sky Sword II systems, the officer said.
A Sky Sword II system comprises one CS/MYS-951 Battle Management Center (BMC), one CS/MPQ-951 radar unit (RU), and four to five missile firing units (MFUs), the officer added.
The MFU can carry up to four Sky Sword II missiles, and the RoCA procurement of six Sky Sword II systems comprises six BMCs, six RUs, 29 MFUs, and 246 missiles, according to the officer.
Taiwan Army orders additional Kestrel anti-tank weapon systems
08 November 2023
by Kapil Kajal
The Kestrel rockets are free-flight and fin-stabilised. In the above picture, a Kestrel rocket launcher is shown with the HEAT (on the left) and HESH (on the right) munitions. (Janes/Patrick Allen)
Taiwan's Republic of China Army (RoCA) has ordered an additional 5,962 Kestrel individual shoulder-launched anti-tank weapon systems (ATWSs) from state-owned National Chung‐Shan Institute of Science and Technology (NCSIST), a RoCA officer told Janes on 7 November.
The new order of 5,962 brings the total number of Kestrels to be procured to 10,962, including 5,000 Kestrels ordered in late 2022, the officer said.
The systems will be delivered by November 2025, the officer added.
According to the officer, each Kestrel system costs around USD3,000 and the systems are intended to replace ageing 66 mm M72 (Type 1) light anti‐tank weapon systems in-service with the RoCA.
The system is “similar to [the] FGM-148 Javelin ATWS but it doesn't have a fire control subsystem, which makes it much lighter”, the officer said.
The RoCA has ordered Kestrel to train the troops on such systems, the officer added. “Kestrel lacks a target tracking mechanism, therefore, troops need to undergo extensive training to manually track targets.”
Using OSINT to provide intelligence on conflict zones in Israel and Gaza
Janes analysts discuss the ongoing situation in Israel/Gaza and discuss how OSINT can help us look at events in conflict zones, including analysis of what happened at the Al-Ahli Arab hospital in Gaza.