Thursday, 23 November 2017

India fires world’s fastest supersonic cruise missile from Russian Su-30 fighter jet

An Indian Air Force Sukhoi Su-30MKI fighter jet © Sanjay Kanojia / AFP

Published time: 22 Nov, 2017 20:11

India has for the first time fired a BrahMos missile from a Sukhoi Su-30 plane, with the country’s Defense Ministry claiming the air-launch a success. The missile’s developer said it “can be a game changer for any air force in the world.”

“The successful maiden test firing of [a] BrahMos air launched cruise missile (ALCM) from [a] Su-30MKI will significantly bolster the IAF’s air combat operations capability from stand-off ranges,” the Indian Defense Ministry said in a statement. A modified Su-30 fighter jet took off from Kalaikunda Airbase in West Bengal state and hit a decommissioned boat in the Bay of Bengal Wednesday.

Defense Minister Nirmala Sitharaman congratulated the military and the missile developers at BrahMos Aerospace, calling it “an outstanding achievement.” Missile test-firings from planes are considered a risky affair, with dozens of aircraft destroyed around the globe during such trials.

The test signals that the BrahMos missile is now ready for induction into the Indian Air Force, a high-ranked government official told the Hindustan Times. India plans to equip at least two Su-30 squadrons – consisting of 18 planes – with the cruise missiles, according to the paper.

The BrahMos missile is a joint Indian-Russian project, and named after the Brahmaputra and Moskva rivers in the two countries. The supersonic cruise missile is the fastest in the world in its class currently in operation, being able to reach a speed of Mach 3.0, three times the speed of sound. It has a range of 290 kilometers and weighs 2.5 tons, and is the heaviest piece of ammunition ever carried by a Su-30.

A missile like BrahMos “can be a game changer for any air force in the world,” Sudhir Mishra, BrahMos Aerospace CEO said. India already has the BrahMos missile land and naval version in service, with the successful aerial launch completing India’s tactical cruise missile triad, the Defense Ministry said.

Earlier, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said that in the future, the Su-30MKI could carry not a single BrahMos missile, but three smaller missiles of the same class. India is also planning to deploy an upgraded BrahMos missile, with an extended range of 450 kilometers.

Original post:

BrahMos Missile Successfully Test

Published on Nov 22, 2017

Su-30MKI: Details

KC-390 arrives in USA for flight testing

KC-390 – Image:

21 NOVEMBER, 2017




In a sign that testing activity has resumed since an incident six weeks ago, Embraer’s KC-390 arrived at the company’s US base in Jacksonville, Florida on 20 November to begin a series of flight tests before certification.

The KC-390's flight test centre is based deep in Brazil's interior at the remote Gavião Peixoto complex. But Embraer will test its dual-role transport and tanker in Jacksonville, evaluating avionics systems, crosswind operations and external noise.

Embraer Defense and Security chief executive Jackson Schneider is optimistic the KC-390 will achieve certification on time by the end of this year. Embraer is scheduled to deliver the first aircraft to the Brazilian air force in 2018.

On 6 October, the first of two KC-390 prototypes, registered PT-ZNF, experienced a stall speed incident that grounded the aircraft. Embraer says the aircraft was not significantly damaged and will return to flight testing after minor repairs.

Flight tracking websites show that the aircraft which arrived in Jacksonville was the second KC-390 prototype, which is registered as PT-ZNJ.

So far, the KC-390 test fleet has accumulated 1,450 flight test hours since the first example achieved first flight nearly three years ago.

The Brazilian air force has ordered 30 KC-390s, including the two prototypes, to replace a fleet of Lockheed Martin C-130H tactical transports. The Portuguese government also has authorised the purchase of five KC-390s, with an option to buy a sixth.

Four more countries – Argentina, Chile, Colombia and the Czech Republic – have expressed interest in buying a combined 26 more.

Original post:

Related articles:

Embraer KC-390: Details

Turkey chooses indigenous jet-engine version basic trainer aircraft

Hurjet - Image:

Turkey chooses jet engine variant for indigenous trainer

ANKARA, Turkey — Turkey’s aerospace powerhouse and procurement authorities have agreed on a program to launch a jet-engine version of the country’s first indigenous basic trainer aircraft, the Hurkus.

The turboprop Hurkus has been developed by Turkish Aerospace Industries, which earlier this year set out for the Hurjet, the Hurkus’ jet version.

TAI officials said a decision by the board of directors in August paved the way for the Hurjet’s development program. They estimate a six-month “preliminary architecture phase” for the start of the program.

One TAI official said it was unclear if the Hurjet will have a single engine or a twin engine. “If we decide to [go] for the twin-engine option, we will need to redesign the Hurkus for the jet version,” he said.

The Hurjet is expected to make its maiden flight in 2022. It will have a maximum speed of Mach 1.2 and can fly at a maximum altitude of 45,000 feet. The Hurjet will have a maximum payload of 3,000 kilograms. The Hurjet will replace the aging T-38 aircraft in Turkey’s inventory.

TAI officials say they also want to develop an armed version of the Hurjet for both the Turkish and export markets.

TAI already is working on an armed version of the Hurkus. Under the plan, the company will develop and manufacture 12 Hurkus-C armed trainers with a follow-on option to deliver 12 more.

According to the contract signed between TAI and the country’s procurement office, the Undersecretariat for Defense Industries, or SSM, the program for the armed trainers will involve maximum-possible locally developed software and hardware, including their design and integration.

Turkish officials have successfully tested the Hurkus-C equipped with L-UMTAS, a laser-guided, long-range, anti-tank missile. L-UMTAS was developed by the state-controlled missile-maker Roketsan primarily to operate from attack helicopters. In 2016, the system was qualified and integrated into the T-129, a Turkish attack helicopter built under license from AgustaWestland.

The aircraft also features other locally developed ammunition including CIRIT, TEBER, HGK and LGK. In addition, it can use INS/GPS-guided bombs, conventional bombs, non-guided rockets and machine guns.

The armed Hurkus features armored body parts, a self-protection system, a data link, laser tacking, an electro-optical and infrared pod, an external fuel tank, and advanced avionics, according to TAI. With its 1,500-kilogram payload that can be utilized through seven external hard points, the Hurkus-C will perform light-attack and armed-reconnaissance missions.

TAI expects the armed Hurkus to be widely used in Turkey’s increasing counterinsurgency fight against pro-Kurdish and Islamic militants both inside Turkey and across its border with Syria and Iraq.

TAI’s engineers began to design the Hurkus in 2004. For the Hurkus program, TAI signed two contracts with SSM: one for prototype development and the other for serial production. Under a June 2014 serial production contract, TAI will deliver 15 aircraft with a follow-on option for 40 more.

The Hurkus platform features a single Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-68 turboprop engine that comes with a power rating of 1,600 shaft horsepower and a maximum speed of 574 kph. TAI’s sister company, Tusas Engine Industries, which specializes in engines, is locally developing a turboshaft engine to replace the Pratt & Whitney Canada engine.

Original post:

TAI Hurkus Basic Trainer Aircraft: Details

Saab offers full technology transfer of Gripen-E fighter jet to India


Eyeing multi-billion deal, Saab offers full technology transfer of Gripen-E fighter jet to India

Swedish defence giant Saab Group said today it would ensure "full" technology transfer of its Gripen-E fighter jet to India if the company gets the contract to supply a fleet of the single engine combat aircraft to Indian Air Force.

By: PTI | New Delhi | Published: November 22, 2017 6:02 PM

Swedish defence giant Saab Group said today it would ensure “full” technology transfer of its Gripen-E fighter jet to India if the company gets the contract to supply a fleet of the single engine combat aircraft to Indian Air Force. The company also said it will build the world’s most modern aerospace facility in India, besides creating a local supplier base of ancillary systems, if it wins the contract for which US defence major Lockheed Martin has emerged as a major contender. “Saab is committed to full technology transfer to India in connection with Indian procurement of Gripen-E,” Saab India Chairman Jan Widerstrom said. Eyeing the multi-billion dollar contract, Lockheed Martin has offered to set up a production line in India for its F-16 Block 70 fighter jets. In September, Saab and the Adani Group had announced a collaboration in defence manufacturing entailing billions of dollars of investment and said the joint venture would produce Gripen military jets in India if it wins the single-engine aircraft deal. The Gripen-E, an advanced version of the Gripen C/D, is a light single-engine multirole fighter aircraft fitted with advanced avionics.

“We will build the world’s most modern aerospace facility and ecosystem in India. We will abide by the terms of the Strategic Partnership that would be set by the government for the single engine fighter aircraft programme and will undertake complete transfer of technology to the chosen joint venture partner,” Widerstrom said in a statement. His comments came as government is all set to start the process for procuring the fleet of single-engine fighters. The fighter jets will have to be produced jointly by a foreign aircraft maker along with an Indian company under the recently launched strategic partnership model which seeks to bring in high-end defence technology to India.

The Saab said it will work with its Indian joint venture partners to ensure that transfer of technology takes place in a manner that it not only ensures transfer of technology but also complete capability. It said the company sees a green field operation where it will train people in India and in Sweden to be able to design, develop, manufacture and maintain its operations in India. “There will be a lot of training in Sweden and in India, and industry-academia-government cooperation. In that way we can reach an indigenous capability to maintain, to sustain, to further develop Gripen in India,” said the Saab India chief. He said, “We will not simply move an assembly line. We will build development capability. We will design, produce, support, innovate in India.”

Original post:

Related articles:

Saab Gripen E: Details

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

Chinese navy quietly commissions more ships

36th 056/056A corvette Guangyuan/广元 (hull number 552) was commissioned. Source: dafeng cao     

20 November 2017

Photographs recently emerged in Chinese online forums suggesting that China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) commissioned its latest Jiangdao-class (Type 056/056A) corvette on 16 November.

A local news report posted on the Weixin website about the commissioning of Guangyuan , (with pennant number 552) was, however, removed shortly after, according to Henri Kenhmann, an experienced observer of Chinese military developments.

Other online sources suggest that a second Type 056 corvette – named Wuhai (with pennant number 540) – was commissioned into the PLAN’s North Sea Fleet that same day. However, no photographs have yet to emerge of the ceremony, and the event has not been reported by state-owned Chinese media.

Original post:

Related articles:

Jiangdao Class (Type 056) Corvette: Details

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Aero completes development of new L-39CW-variant Albatros

The L-39CW pictured offers retrofitted improvements to the baseline L-39 in the form of a new engine and modern avionics. (Aero Vodochody)

Gareth Jennings - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

20 November 2017

Aero Vodochody has completed development of a new variant of its L-39 trainer and light attack aircraft designated the L-39CW, the company announced on 20 November.

The L-39CW involves retrofitting an existing L-39 with a more powerful and more efficient Williams International FJ44-4M jet engine as well as modern avionics. According to Aero, ground and flight trails have now been completed and the configuration is ready for delivery.

While the baseline L-39 is in service with a number of countries, Aero has given no indication as to which have signed up for the L-39CW enhancement, except to say that it is in negotiations for the retrofit of “tens of aircraft”. There are approximately 600 L-39s flying today with the air forces of Algeria, Angola, Armenia Bangladesh, Belarus, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cuba, the Czech Republic, Egypt Equatorial Guinea, Estonia, Ethiopia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Libya (most of which are believed to have been withdrawn from use), Lithuania, Mozambique, Nigeria, Russia, Slovakia, South Sudan, Syria, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, Vietnam, and Yemen.

“Based on big existing fleet and our approach of supporting L-39s users and building business relationships with them, we developed a package, available for the customers to improve operating capabilities by new engine and also new avionics,” said Giuseppe Giordo, president of Aero Vodochody.

The L-39CW is the latest in a long list of L-39 variants that includes the recently launched L-39NG. First unveiled at the 2014 Farnborough International Airshow, the L-39NG features the same FJ44-4M engine as the L-39CW, as well as other improvements. The main differentiator between the L-39CW and L-39NG appears to be that the former offers upgrades to existing airframes, while the latter is a new-build solution that offers some additional enhancements.

Original post:

Related articles:

Aero L-159 Alca: Details

L-39NG Multi-Role Jet Trainer: Details

Australia’s second Air Warfare Destroyer begins sea trials

Australia’s second air warfare destroyer ‘Brisbane’ starts sea trials. Source:

The second of Australia's new air warfare destroyers has begun sea trials.

Source: AAP

The second of Australia's three new air warfare destroyers has begun sea trials.

The Brisbane was launched in Adelaide in December and is due to be handed over to the navy next year.

It follows the Hobart into active service and will be joined by the final ship, the Sydney in 2020.

The Air Warfare Destroyer Alliance says the first phase of trials will test the ship's propulsion, control and navigation systems.

More advanced trials next year will test the Brisbane's combat and communication systems.

"The AWD program continues to meet or exceed our milestone targets," alliance general manager Paul Evans said in a statement on Monday.

"Our workforce of more than 1700 in Adelaide has improved and evolved with our whole team working hard to achieve this milestone."

Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne said more than 5000 people had worked on the destroyer program over the past decade.

"Through the AWD program, we have created a local workforce with specialist shipbuilding and complex systems integration skills that will form the foundation for future shipbuilding projects in Australia," Mr Pyne said.

Original post:

Related articles:

Hobart Class Destroyer: Details