Raytheon Missiles Won a $239.1 million contract modification for StormBreaker (SDBII, GBU-53/B) production Lot 6. Designed to address critical troop needs, the StormBreaker can detect, track, and destroy stationary or moving targets with high-precision and stand-off range during the day and at night in all-weather conditions. The GBU-53/B, originally known as the Small Diameter Bomb II (SDB II), has a tri-mode guidance system able to find targets using imaging infrared or millimeter-wave radar, or using semi-active laser homing to hit a designated aimpoint. Depending on the altitude of the launching aircraft, the weapon can also glide up to 69 miles on its own using a GPS-assisted inertial navigation system, after which could strike a specific coordinate or begin searching for a target. Just recently it was announced that the Air Force approved the bomb for use on the F-15. This means that the service will now be able to send the weapons downrange for use by F-15E squadrons Work under the modification will take place in Tucson, Arizona. Estimated completion date is November 28, 2023.
AAR Aircraft Services won a $67.3 million modification, which exercises options to procure P-8A Poseidon aircraft depot scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, fulfillment of depot in-service repair/planner and estimator requirements, technical directive incorporation, airframe modifications, aircraft on ground support and removal and replacement of engines in support of the Navy, the government of Australia, and Foreign Military Sales customers. The P-8A Poseidon,the US Navy’s maritime patrol aircraft, is capable of broad-area, maritime and littoral operations, and is also successful at search and rescue. Operating with a smaller crew, yet delivering an extended global reach, greater payload capacity, higher operating altitude, open-systems architecture and significant growth potential, the P-8A provides more combat capability. Work will take place in Indianapolis, Indiana and is expected to be finished by October 2021.
Middle East & Africa
Aegis Defense Services won a $16 million deal to provide US Forces Afghanistan with private security service protection. Bids were solicited via the internet with seven received. Aegis Defense Services provides management services on a contract or fee basis. Work will take place in Mazar-e, Afghanistan. Estimated completion date is October 29, 2023.
Israel and the US Air Force carried out their third joint exercise involving their F-35A fighters on October 12. The press release said the exercise involves the 421st Expeditionary Fighter Squadron and Israel’s 116th Squadron. F-16Is from 115th Squadron played the aggressor role. The IAF’s 116th Squadron, which operates the “Adir” F-35I fighter jet, trained alongside the 380th Air Expeditionary Wing’s 421st Expeditionary Fighter Squadron and 908th Expeditionary Air Refueling Squadron. The 340th EARS assigned to Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, participated as well. The 421 EFS operates the F-35A Lightning II, while the 908th EARS and 340th EARS provided aerial refueling support with a KC-10 Extender and KC-135 Stratotanker.
The US State Department approved the potential sale of Naval Strike Missile Coastal Defense Systems to Romania, in a deal that could be worth about $300 million. The Naval Strike Missile is a sea-skimming, over-the-horizon anti-ship missile that has limited, built-in target recognition capabilities. Romania wants to buy two of the systems, according to an announcement on the website of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. Romania will use this long-range, precision strike weapon to enhance mission effectiveness, survivability, and NATO interoperability in current and future missions and operations. Included in the proposed package are up to 10 Link 16 Multifunctional Information Distribution System-Joint Tactical Radio Systems, two Coastal Defense System Fire Distribution Centers, four Mobile Launch Vehicles, Transport Loading Vehicles and the missiles themselves, as well as other equipment.
Seven K-8W jet trainers were delivered from China to Bangladesk on October 15. The jets landed at Zahurul Haq base. The aircraft was flown by Bangladesh Air Force pilots, with Group Captain AKM Abdur Razzak leading the mission. They departed from Dehong Magshi airport and landed on BAF Base Zahurul Haque, Chattogram. Following the tradition, the aircraft received a water cannon salute after landing. The aircraft also made a flypast over the airbase in the presence of Bangladesh Air Chief Marshal Masihuzzaman Serniabat. The government-to-government deal was signed in 2018 under Forces Goal 2030 plan. It is an extension of the first order placed in 2014 in which 8 trainers were purchased. The 2018 contract was signed The Bangladesh Air Force and China National Aero-Technology Import & Export Corporation (CATIC), and it comprises of total 23 units, but the expenditure is yet to be revealed.
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