US-based company Gulfstream Aerospace Corporation announced on 2 October that the Philippine Air Force (PAF) has established a contract through the United States government to purchase a Gulfstream G280 as well as parts, tooling and contractor logistics support. The aircraft will be configured for command and control missions and is slated for delivery in 2020. It is believed that the G280 will operate for the 250th presidential airlift wing, based in Pasay City,
A US Department of Defence (DOD) contract notice dated 17 September, states that Gulfstream had won an order from the Philippine Air Force for the supply of one aircraft, parts and two-year logistic support. The DOD notice stated that the total contract value is $31,899,999. The current list price for a G280 is $24,500,000. Gulfstream says that the aircraft is scheduled for delivery in 2020, following configuration for command-and-control missions. The DOD notice states that the contract is due to be completed by the end of May 2022.The contract includes two years of logistical support, inferring that the G280 will be delivered before the end of May 2020.
Philippine Air Force orders Gulfstream G280 Command and Control Missions
The G280 aircraft will likely be outfitted with extensive communications equipment, although it is currently unclear if it will be outfitted for use in a full surveillance and intelligence role. With more than 70 speed records and the ability to operate at steep-approach airports, the G280 can perform a variety of challenging missions. The G280 has a maximum range of 3,600 nautical miles/6,667 kilometers at its long-range cruise speed of Mach 0.80 and a high-speed cruise of Mach 0.84. The aircraft can fly eight hours nonstop and can connect Dubai to Hong Kong; Singapore to Melbourne, Australia; or Singapore to Dubai.
The Gulfstream G280 is a twin-engine business jet built by Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) for Gulfstream Aerospace. It began delivery to users in 2012. In 2005, Gulfstream and IAI began designing a follow-on aircraft to the Gulfstream G200. Gulfstream has produced special mission aircraft for more than 50 years. Aircraft can be configured for head-of-state and VIP transport; command and control; airborne early warning; medical evacuation; high-altitude atmospheric research; and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance. More than 205 Gulfstream aircraft support governments and special missions in more than 40 countries around the world.
The TAI T625 Gokbey is a twin-engined light transport/utility helicopter developed by Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) as part of the Original Helicopter Program, coordinated by the Presidency of Defense Industries. Turkish Aerospace Industries launched the preliminary design studies in 2010. The project commenced in 2013 when Undersecretariat for Defence Industries signed a contract with the Turkish Aerospace Industries to develop a 6-ton class multi-role helicopter for land operations. Alp Aviation is responsible for production and assembly of landing gear, gearbox and dynamic components, while Spanish CESA was selected to supply hydraulic systems.
The T625 prototype expected to weigh 5 tonnes and is in the interim powered by two LHTEC (a Rolls-Royce & Honeywell Partnership) CTS800 4-AT turboshaft engines, 1,373 shaft horsepower (shp) each. The LHTEC CTS800 was chosen due to commonality with the TAI/AgustaWestland T129. TUSAS Engine Industries, a Turkish Aero-engine design and production company has begun developing a next generation indigenous powerplant for the T625 named the TS1400. The company is currently working on its first turboshaft helicopter engine TS1400. Gokbey features a four-axis dual redundant automatic flight control system, along with an ASELSAN glass cockpit with two wide touchscreen Integrated Mission Displays (8×20 inches) and two touchscreen data entry Touch Command Control Units (8×10 inches). It is designed for IFR and VFR single pilot operations, night operations and flight in known icing conditions.
TAI T625 Gokbey Multirole Helicopter
The helicopter is designed for two crew and 12 passengers. The large cabin space can be arranged to meet various operational needs, such as VIP transportation, ambulance and search and rescue operations. The T625 is designed and optimized to meet and exceed the multi-mission requirements for hot & high geographical environments and for adverse weather conditions. The aircraft incorporates several new technology features to provide the highest levels of safety and operational benefits for operators. The Turkish Presidency of Defense Industries has confirmed that it has obtained a multitude of patents for various sub-systems used in the T625. On 6 September 2018, the prototype, registered TC-HLP, first flew at Ankara.
Dropping heavy equipment out of a Royal Australian Air Force C-17A Globemaster aircraft was no small feat for a combined Air Force and Army team.The Air Mobility Training and Development Unit (AMTDU) and the Australian Army’s 176 Air Dispatch Squadron have deployed to Exercise Mobility Guardian in the United States. The team of air dispatchers, loadmasters and engineers have been kicking goals at the mobility exercise, hosted by the United States Air Force’s 92nd Air Refuelling Wing at Fairchild Air Force Base, Washington State.
Royal Australian Air Force and Australian Army combine for US air drop
The Australian Defence Force personnel have been working closely every day as an integrated team with their counterparts from the United States, the Royal Canadian Air Force and the New Zealand Defence Force.
Squadron Leader Rickesh Sunwar said AMTDU and 176 Squadron have successfully worked on standardising airdrop and drop zone procedures with the other nations to establish a solid foundation for seamless joint operations in future.
A seminal achievement was accomplished in the quest for technologies related to operation of indigenous fighter aircraft from aircraft carriers. On 29 September, 2019, LCA Naval Prototype-2 launched off the ski jump at 1621 hours and then subsequently “trapped” at 1631 hrs on the arresting gear site (both locations situated at Shore Based Test Facility INS Hansa, Goa). While both these activities had been achieved individually earlier, this was the first occasion when the complete cycle of launch and recovery necessary for aircraft carrier operations was accomplished in a single sortie.
Being a pioneering technology acquisition and demonstration program for the unique Short Take-Off but Arrested Recovery (STOBAR) concept of aircraft operations, the LCA (Navy) team has had to conceptualise and experiment with complex software modes from a clean slate. All this had to be done while tentatively exploring and incrementally expanding the structural capabilities of the aircraft to withstand the brutal requirements of carrier operations.
LCA Tejas Naval Fighter Completes Full Mission Sortie
The exploratory nature of this stage of the programme necessitates experimentation with multiple software options and hardware configurations. These include multiple configurations of aerodynamic surfaces, different flight control strategies, avionics tools and display symbols to ease the piloting task, multiple iterations to the “mechanicals” (dampers/structural members/contact points) etc.
Comprehensive and seamless integration of all these experimental variants simultaneously into a single platform is therefore not possible till all options have been evaluated and the preferred configuration has been decided. The events on September 29, 2019, therefore, demonstrate the completion of the basic exploration phase of the programme and transition to refinement and improvement iterations. Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh has congratulated DRDO, ADA, HAL and Indian Navy for this major feat. Secretary, Department of Defence, R&D and Chairman DRDO Dr. G Satheesh Reddy also congratulated DRDO, ADA, HAL and Indian Navy for the achievement.
United Technologies Corp., Pratt & Whitney Military Engines, East Hartford, Connecticut, is awarded a $2,195,644,813 modification (P00011) to a previously awarded advanced acquisition contract (N00019-18-C-1021). This modification definitizes the production and delivery of 112 F135-PW-100 propulsion systems for the Air Force, 46 F135-PW-600 propulsion systems for the Marine Corps, and 25 F135-PW-100 propulsion systems for the Navy.
In addition, this modification definitizes award of long lead components, parts and materials associated with 129 F135-PW-100 and 19 F135-PW-600 propulsion systems for non-U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) participants and Foreign Military Sales (FMS) customers.
Work will be performed in East Hartford, Connecticut (67%); Indianapolis, Indiana (26.5%); and Bristol, United Kingdom (6.5%), and is expected to be completed in February 2023.
Fiscal 2018 and 2019 aircraft procurement (Air Force, Marine Corps, and Navy); non-U.S. DoD participant; and FMS funds in the amount of $3,561,262,259 are being obligated at time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year.
This modification combines purchases for the Air Force ($878,133,063; 40%); the Marine Corps ($619,150,637; 28%); the Navy ($178,828,697; 8%); non-U.S. DoD Participants ($420,087,247; 19%); and FMS customers ($99,445,169; 5%). The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.
Pratt Wins $2.2Bn Order for F-35 Engines
Specialized naval helicopter with underwater sonar system, tactical radar and high cabin, the Swedish Air Force Helicopter Wing NH90 ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) is specially tailored for its maritime missions and the operative environment in the Baltic Sea, this helicopter is best-suited for the customer’s requirements.
In 2001, Sweden signed a contract for 18 NH90 TTH, made up of 13 TTT/SAR and 5 SAR/ASW to be operated by the Swedish Air Force. Because of renewed foreign submarine activity at the Swedish coast in 2014 it was decided in 2015 that four TTT/SAR would be modified to SAR/ASW in order to increase the anti-submarine warfare capability, so there will be 9 TTT/SAR and 9 SAR/ASW. The NH90 is known as the Helikopter 14 (HKP14) in Swedish service, the FOC version of TTT/SAR are designated HKP14E and the FOC version of SAR/ASW are designated HKP14F. In December 2015, the first Swedish NH90 in a full ASW configuration was delivered.
Sweden NH90 Anti-Submarine Warfare training
The NHIndustries NH90 is a medium-sized, twin-engine, multi-role military helicopter. It was developed in response to NATO requirements for a battlefield helicopter which would also be capable of being operated in naval environments. The NH90 was developed and is manufactured by NHIndustries, a collaborative company, which is owned by Airbus Helicopters, Leonardo (formerly AgustaWestland) and Fokker Aerostructures. The first prototype conducted its maiden flight in December 1995; the type first entered operational service in 2007. As of July 2019, the NH90 has logged 185,000 flight hours in the armed forces of thirteen nations.
The aviation units that were formerly under the Swedish Army (“Arméflyget”) and the Swedish Navy (“Marinflyget”) have been merged with the helicopter units of the Air Force to form the single Helicopter Wing (Helikopterflottiljen, abbreviated Hkpflj) for the entire Armed Forces.
The NHIndustries NH90 is a medium-sized, twin-engine, multi-role military helicopter.
France Navy (Marine Nationale) is to order three Northrop Grumman E-2D Advanced Hawkeye airborne early-warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft in 2020. The E-2C has been in French Navy service for more than 20 years and the Marine Nationale is looking at the new E-2D as the obvious replacement. The French Navy had been closely following the introduction of the E-2D into US Navy service, with the type to be adopted to replace the three E-2C Hawkeyes serving with Flottille 4F at Lann-Bihoué, near Lorient, in Brittany.The newer variant is fitted with an entirely new AN/APY-9 radar with combined electronic/mechanical-scanning capabilities, more powerful processors, and an improved man-machine interface with larger screens. The airframe and engines remain the same, however, which will help accelerate and facilitate the transition from the E-2C to the E-2D.
The French Navy Naval Aviation (Force maritime de l’aéronautique navale) Flottille 4F currently operates three E-2C Hawkeyes acquired from the United States acquired in 1998, 1999 and 2004. It is the only Hawkeye operator with the United Sates to deploy the AEW aircraft from aircraft carriers. In the meantime, the three French E-2C will be mordernized and upgraded. Its scope is the modernization of weapons system, electronic warfare and IFF, as well as tactical consoles (2 sensors out of 3 are replaced), and obsolescence processing to meet the requirements of interoperability. Modernization work is carried out by the manufacturer Northrop Grumman, in France at AIA Cuers
France Navy operates a single aircraft carrier, the Charles De Gaulle, which relies on similar steam based launch systems to the U.S. Nimitz Class supercarriers. The similarities between the two platforms, despite the French carrier’s relative lack of sophistication and far smaller size, has meant that several carrier based aircraft used are interoperable. Indeed, the carrier Charles De Gaulle’s Dassault Rafale M is the only non U.S. carrier based fighter allowed to operate from U.S. supercarriers. The similarities between their systems also allow the French Navy to operate the E-2 Hawkeye from its own carrier, giving the Charles De Gaulle’s air wing a significant advantage over those of rival carrier platforms.
French Navy E-2C Hawkeye