10 Jan 13. Britain has ordered a French-built anti-sniper system to help protect troops in Afghanistan, even as spending on military equipment to defeat the Taliban is in decline as the drawdown of combat troops gathers pace. The U.K. Defence Ministry revealed in late December that it was spending around £5m ($8m) on an urgent operational requirement (UOR) to provide troops with equipment that uses a laser to detect the glass lenses used by the Taliban on sniper rifle sights. The purchase coincided with the MoD’s first public breakdown of how it had spent billions of pounds over the past four years equipping the military in Afghanistan and Iraq with UOR kits. French company Cilas is due to begin deliveries of its SLD 500 system this week, having beat three other contenders for a deal signed Nov. 26, a company executive said.
10 Jan 13. The U.K. MoD has signed a £9m contract to provide the Armed Forces with more than 25,000 new Glock sidearms. The Glock 17 Gen 4 pistol is not only much lighter than the Browning pistol currently used by the UK military, it is also more accurate and its magazines can carry more bullets. The Glock 17 has an increased magazine capacity of 17 9mm rounds, compared to 13 rounds for the Browning. Personnel across all three Services will begin to receive the new Glock 17s in the coming weeks and troops deployed to Afghanistan will be among the first to use the new weapon. The contract with Viking Arms Ltd of Harrogate, Yorkshire, also includes more than 25,000 holsters.
10 Jan 13. Thales to supply equipment for German Army’s Gladius system
Rheinmetall Defence has awarded a subcontract to Thales for the production and delivery of night-vision goggles (NVGs) and infrared (IR) modules for the Gladius soldier system being manufactured for the German Army. The company will develop and supply 310 light and compact intensifier (LUCIE) II D goggles and 16 IR modules for 30 Gladius systems, previously called ‘Infantry Soldier of the Future’ (IdZ 2), under the €7.5m contract. Additional deliveries include 300 ultra high-frequency (UHF) radios of SOLAR 400 EG-E type, lithium-ion batteries, charging stations, antenna kits, adapters and cables, as well as logistics documentation and training to the army. (Source: armytechnology.com)
09 Jan 13. RMK Marine selected for Turkish Navy’s Milgem programme
The Turkish Navy has selected RMK Marine to negotiate its plan for the
construction of six follow-on Milgem-class corvettes under the Turkish national warship programme, Ministry of Defence’s Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (SSM) has announced. RMK Marine has been selected for the construction phase of the Milgem corvette programme, reported Janes.com. The Turkish national warship programme aims to build eight corvettes and four frigates worth $3bn, with anti-submarine warfare and high-seas patrol capabilities. (Source: navaltechnology.com)
10 Jan 13. Frazer-Nash has won a contract with the European Defence Agency (EDA) to develop an optimised certification and qualification process for dual use (civil/military) helicopters, following a competitive tender. At present, aircraft can be subject to lengthy certification and qualification processes when they are used either for a role not originally developed for (for instance, when a civilian helicopter is adapted for military purposes), or when they are transferred for use across different European Union member states. In the latter case, it is typical for the certification conducted by one nation to be unrecognised by another – with often significant re-testing required to generate evidence to support certification by the receiving nation. Significant time and cost savings could be made if certification and qualification processes are optimised, regardless of the future use of the platform – and this is particularly the case for new helicopters that are designed with both civil and military uses in mind.