• Pentagon seeks alternate gearbox to mitigate CH-53K production risk

    The US Department of Defense (DoD) is looking to address ongoing problems with the Sikorsky CH-53K King Stallion’s main gearbox (MGB) by sourcing an alternate supplier. The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) issued a solicitation on 22 April for alternative sources for the MGB to mitigate

  • IAF inaugurates repair and overhaul facility for Mi-17-V5 helos

    The Indian Air Force (IAF) inaugurated a repair and overhaul facility for its fleet of Russian-made Mil Mi-17-V5 ‘Hip’ medium-lift helicopters on 17 April at Chandigarh, some 250 km north of New Delhi. India had acquired 151 twin-engine Mi-17-V5s between 2008 and 2016 for USD2.87

  • UK safety watchdog highlights Watchkeeper UAV shortfalls

    Key Points The British Army is still having issues operating its Watchkeepers, despite the UAVs having received their ‘release to service’ certification Three Watchkeeper UAVs have crashed in recent years while on UK-based training sorties UK safety investigators have identified

  • Turkey advances Anka-Aksungur MALE UAV development

    Turkish Aerospace is expanding the testing envelope of its internally funded Anka-Aksungur medium-altitude long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicle (MALE UAV) development with the aim of pushing the air vehicle into series production by the first quarter of 2020, company sources told Jane’s .

  • US Air Force finding minor issues following B-1B grounding

    A key US Air Force (USAF) officer has no deep concerns about the viability of the Rockwell B-1B Lancer strategic bomber following a 28 March grounding. “I am not finding any major additional significant system issues,” General Timothy Ray, Air Force Global Strike Command (AFGSC) chief

  • AAAA 2019: Aurora promotes Odysseus ultra-long-endurance UAV to US Army aviators

    Key Points Aurora Flight Sciences displayed its Odysseus UAV at a major US Army trade show Odysseus is solar powered, autonomous, and can provide communications and ISR capability Aurora Flight Sciences promoted its Odysseus high-altitude ultra-long-endurance solar-powered autonomous unmanned

  • Indian Navy loses helicopter in Arabian Sea

    A three-member Indian Navy (IN) aircrew escaped unharmed after they were forced to ditch their Chetak (Aérospatiale Alouette III) helicopter in the Arabian Sea when the platform encountered technical problems, according to an IN statement issued on 16 April. IN spokesperson Captain D K Sharma

  • MDHI reveals Griffin-armed MD 969 combat helo

    MD Helicopters Inc (MDH) has equipped its recently revealed MD 969 Combat Explorer with a precision-guided munition (PGM) capability. The capability, which was showcased at the 2019 Army Aviation Mission Solutions Summit held in Nashville from 14–16 April, is a first for a helicopter and

  • Update: LAAD 2019: Jetwind of Brazil develops 3-in-1 UAV

    Jetwind Brasil Services and Technologies has developed a 3-in-1 unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that has military applicability, according to a company official. Tiago Giglio Rodrigues, Jetwind founder and executive director, told Jane’s on 5 April at the 2019 LAAD Defence & Security

  • USAF deploys F-35A to Middle East for first time

    The US Air Force (USAF) has deployed the Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) to the Middle East for the first time. The US Air Forces Central Command (AFCENT) announced on 15 April that an undisclosed number of aircraft from the active duty 388th Fighter Wing (FW) and

  • AAAA 2019: Bell develops Autonomous Pod Transport unmanned VTOL aircraft

    Bell has developed a pair of Autonomous Pod Transport (APT) scalable modular unmanned vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft capable of transporting payloads such as medical equipment, ammo, and water, among others. Todd Worden, Bell senior manager for advanced tiltrotor systems, told

  • Albania to receive surplus US Black Hawks

    Albania is to receive three Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk medium-lift utility helicopters from the United States, the country’s defence minister, Olta Xhacka, announced on 8 April during an interview with the Tirana-based TV station Vizion+. Xhacka said the acquisition will be part of a US

  • RAAF receives first of three leased Falcon 7X aircraft

    The first of three Dassault Falcon 7X aircraft leased by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) has arrived in Canberra, the Australian Department of Defence (DoD) announced in a statement on 16 April. The new aircraft are expected to replace the RAAF’s fleet of three Bombardier CL-604

  • RQ-11B Raven UAS in service with Uzbek military

    A video released on 13 April by the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Uzbekistan shows that the AeroVironment RQ-11B Raven unmanned aerial system (UAS) is now operational with the country’s military. The video displays a hand-launched RQ-11B unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) participating in

  • Russia completes deliveries of SU-35 fighter aircraft to China

    Russia has completed the delivery of 24 Sukhoi Su-35 ‘Flanker-E’ multirole fighter aircraft to China’s People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF), an official from Russia’s Federal Service for Military-Technical Cooperation (FSVTS) told Jane’s on 16 March.

  • AAAA 2019: Sikorsky-Boeing targets SB>1 Defiant envelope expansion

    The Sikorsky-Boeing SB>1 Defiant co-axial compound helicopter team is planning to expand the aircraft’s flight envelope after the upcoming third flight test slated for next week, according to a company official. Bill Fell, Defiant test pilot, told reporters on 15 April that the aircraft,

  • British Apache and Wildcat helicopters arrive in Estonia

    The United Kingdom has deployed AgustaWestland-Boeing WAH-64 Apache AH1 and AgustaWestland AW159 Lynx Wildcat AH1 helicopters to Estonia in support of NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP). Five British Army Air Corps (AAC) Apaches from 663 Squadron departed their home base at Wattisham in

  • Indonesia signs USD16 million contract for one Super Puma helicopter

    Key Points Indonesia has acquired another Super Puma helicopter from PT Dirgantara Indonesia The airframe is expected to be deployed primarily for search-and-rescue duties The Indonesian Ministry of Defence has signed an IDR237 trillion (USD16.8 million) contract with state-owned aerospace

  • USN expands MQ-8C Fire Scout capability

    The US Navy (USN) is continuing to evolve the MQ-8C variant of the Fire Scout vertical take-off and landing unmanned aerial vehicle (VTOL UAV), service officials told Jane’s . Capability is currently spread across the two variants of the Fire Scout – the Schweizer 333-derived MQ-8B and

  • Costs drop for US presidential helicopter, but issues remain

    The US Navy (USN) has managed to cut acquisition costs for the proposed new presidential helicopter but still needs to solve operational issues, according to a new Government Accountability Office (GAO) report. “Acquisition cost estimates for the Presidential Helicopter Replacement Programme

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