The Navy contracted Raytheon Missiles $ Defense with a $24.8 million modification for procurement of fiscal 2021 Navy Standard Missile-2 intermediate level provisioned items ordered spares; and to exercise one-year options for fiscal 2021 Standard Missile-2 and Standard Missile-6 repairs and maintenance. The SM-2 is the U.S Navy’s primary surface-to-air defense weapon and is part of the AEGIS Weapon System along Ticonderoga-class cruisers and Arleigh Burke Class destroyers. The SM-6, also known as RIM-174, is a ship-launched extended range variant of the anti-air and anti-surface interceptor missile developed by Raytheon Company. It is also a key part of the AEGIS Weapon System. Work will take place in Arkansas, Arizona and California. Expected completion date is in July 2024.
The Blue Angels demonstration flew its F/A-18 A/B/C/D Hornets for the last time on November 4, 2020. The team of planes, formally the US Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, has used Hornets for the past 34 years, but transitioned to the F/A-18 E/F Super Hornet platform. “We deeply appreciate the expertise and operational knowledge Blue Angels past and present have brought to the team and we look forward to enhancing our operations as we fully transition to flying the Super Hornet,” Cmdr. Brian Kesselring, Blue Angels commanding officer said in a statement The demonstration team began in 1946 as a civilian and military morale-building experiment, and travels to air shows around the world to exhibit aerial maneuvers. It first used the F/A-18A and F/A-18B Hornet platforms in 1986, and transitioned to C and D models, since discontinued, in 2010.
Middle East & Africa
Egyptian and French naval forces carried out a transit naval training session in the northern fleet region of the Mediterranean Sea, Arab News reported. Egypt’s Taba frigate and France’s Jean Bart frigate took part in the joint exercise. The exercise included training on various sailing formations and assessing surface, air, and submarine threats, and setting scenarios to deal with such threats. The training showed the joint naval units’ capability to take their position with high speed and precision, El-Refaie said, adding that the Egyptian and French sides’ high combat experience has been reflected in the exercise.
The government of the Netherlands initiated an armored combat vehicle modernization program worth over 500 million Euros ($590.8 million). One of the stages of modernization that has been decided upon, is adoption of rubber track systems. There are many advantages to what seems like a small change from a steel track to a rubber track. The rubber significantly reduces the operational cost and the weight, which leads to better performance by the vehicle. The new contract that has been signed includes development, manufacturing, testing, validation and supply of implementation kits for training.
According to the Australian Department of Defense, the Royal Australian Air Force is testing safe airdrops of fodder. The Air Mobility Training and Development Unit is clearing a new method of delivering fodder using C-130 Hercules and C-27J Spartan transport aircraft, it said in a statement. It’s a safer method of performing a role last conducted by Air Force in the 1980s and ’90s, according to Commanding Officer of AMTDU Wing Commander Cameron Clark. According to Clark, the new method involves constructing a frangible box around the fodder, reducing the risk from foreign object debris damage to the aircraft. The Airdrop trials at RAAF Base Richmond could help cattle stranded by floodwaters.
BAE Systems responded to a Request for Information (RFI) from the Japanese Ministry of Defense, proposing a package of integration support to Japan’s F-X next generation fighter development program. The response to the RFI, which was issued by the JMOD’s Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Agency (ATLA), outlines technical capabilities across a range of key areas, which BAE Systems can offer into supporting development of the F-X program. “We firmly believe that we can add significant value to the F-X programme. We look forward to further progressing our discussions and we are honored to have the opportunity to collaborate with Japan on this programme,” said Andy Latham, Campaign Delivery Director – Japan, for BAE Systems’ Air business.
Watch: Watch: Blue Angels Final Legacy Hornet Flight 2020