16 Dec 04. The USAF and five European Participating Air Forces (EPAFs) — Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Portugal — are receiving new technologies for their F-16s that will ensure the latest combat capabilities, along with an unprecedented degree of interoperability and cost savings among these NATO allies. The capabilities are being implemented mostly through software developed by Lockheed Martin The new software packages for the USAF F-16s, designated M3+, and the corresponding EPAF version, designated M3, were released this summer and are being implemented on aircraft having received appropriate avionics upgrades (described in text below). There is a high degree of commonality in the software, with some differences owing to features that are unique to the various aircraft models.The most notable common new capabilities are the Link 16 data link and a helmet-mounted cueing system (HMCS). The USAF F-16s also will be receiving a capability to deliver the Lockheed Martin AGM-158 JASSM and have compatibility with the Lockheed Martin Sniper XR targeting pod, both recently certified on the F-16. The European F-16s will gain the capability to deliver JDAM.
21 Dec 04. General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems has been awarded a $5.8m contract to provide analysis, design and implementation support for the Acquisition Wide Area Network (AWAN) procurement system for the National Security Agency/Central Security Service (NSA/CSS) and their industry participant base. General Dynamics’ Trusted Network Environment multi-level security system will be used as the foundation for the Acquisition Wide Area Network. The first phase will provide an initial pilot program reaching the National Security Agency and six contractors and is expected to be completed by May 2005. Subsequent phases will extend the Acquisition Wide Area Network connectivity to all participant facilities, while maintaining the stringent access control models stipulated by the National Security
Agency. General Dynamics has selected Lockheed Martin to assist in the areas of system engineering, architecture development, and implementation.
20 Dec 04. Armor Holdings Inc. received a $50m contract to provide spare parts for the Army’s up-armored Humvee vehicle fleet. The three-year indefinite-quantity, indefinite-delivery contract from the Defense Logistics Agency has an initial $6.4m award which allows the agency to place additional orders over the next three years and has a two-year option. Work under the contract is expected to be performed in 2005, 2006 and 2007 by the company’s plant in Cincinnati.
20 Dec 04. Fleet Support Limited (FSL) has completed the final Royal Navy ship maintenance project under the allocated programme of work to Portsmouth Naval Base. The 10-month task on HMS York included fitting the first new 4.5 inch Mark 8 MoD 1 gun to a Royal Navy Type 42 destroyer. She was formally accepted back by C-in-C Fleet on December 14 after a successful Fleet Date Inspection.The extensive package of work on the 1982-built ship grew significantly from the original programme when further maintenance and rectification work became necessary as the ship was surveyed. Using a partnering ‘Team Portsmouth’ approach to manage the project, all parties were actively involved in finding innovative ways of resolving the many emergent problems that this Upkeep period offered. This approach will now become standard practice for FSL and will be developed and honed to work even more effectively on future projects.
20 Dec 04. The Minister of Defense of Bulgaria announced the selection of the team led by Elbit Systems and Lockheed Martin, as the preferred bidder for the helicopter upgrade program in Bulgaria. The program includes upgrading 12 MI-24 combat helicopters and 6 MI-17 transport helicopters, to comply with NATO standards. Elbit Systems will be the prime contractor for the project. The project’s amount is expected to be material to Elbit Systems.