DSA NEWS IN BRIEF
23 Apr 08. Faiz: Continue space programme. The Angkasawan programme should continue, with the funding shared among the relevant ministries that will benefit from the aerospace industry, suggested Mejar Dr Faiz Khaleed. The second Angkasawan said the space mission should no longer be about sending a Malaysian to space but for Malaysia to embark on the aerospace industry. He said the industry that included manned space flight missions benefited many fields including communication, research, medical, defence and education. “As the industry benefits many fields under many ministries, these ministries can share in the funding,” he said in response to Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili’s statement that the ministry presently had no money to embark on the second phase of the programme. Dr Faiz said people must be clear that it was now about research and development. “If you just want to send people to space, RM100mil is expensive. We must look at it as moving on to developing our aerospace industry. “Developing research and development means investment,” he said, and pointed out countries, including China, which persisted with their space programme because of the far-reaching benefits. On whether he was disappointed with the possibility that he would not get to go to space, he said: “I am always ready to serve the nation. “If my service is needed I will always give my 200%. What I can do is to be prepared. I was given the chance to be in the industry for two years now and I learned a lot.”
21 Apr 08. Hesco Bastion told BATTLESPACE that the Company is selling £200m worth of systems a year all over the world. In the Frae sat, the company has sold to Thailand, Singapore and Indonesia and is now expanding its business base to include building systems for oil companies to protect remote units in dangerous territories and for flood defences in the USA in particular, where Hesco has a factory in Louisiana.
22 Apr 08. Defence Services Sdn Bhd (DSSB) has developed its own Overhead Weapons Station, the Remote Operated weapon Systems (ROWS). The €1m project was initiated in January 2006 and its first pre-production model was unveiled during DSA 208. ROWSis capable of handling various weapons including 7.62mm GPMG, 12.7mm HMG and 40mm AGL. The sight head is a Selex Galileo STAWS sight whilst DSSB and Seelx collaborated on this programme which they propose to jointly market.
Apr 08. Malaysia looks for new helicopters. Adam Thomas of DESO told BATTLESPACE that Britain is optimistic its AW101 helicopter will replace the ageing S61 Nuri helicopter which has been in service for over thirty years and has caused 76 accidents, some of them fatal. Eurocopter is perceived to be the favourite to win this contract. Both Sikorsky and Mil are also bidding.
Apr 08. Malaysia looks at UAV service provision. Local UAV developer Unmanned Systems Technology (UST) is in the process of negotiating with the Malaysian armed forces to supply the latter with its Aludra Mk1 tactical UAV (TUAV). If successful the agreement will be a departure for Malaysia because rather than buying the system the armed forces will be buying a service. Under the terms of the proposal, which is awaiting the correct approvals from the finance ministry, the UAVs will be company owned and operated. According to company officials this will allow the Malaysian armed forces to develop Concept of Operations for TUAVs without having to purchase a system. The work will also inform the development of UST’s Mk2 system. The project will see the Aludra operating along the coast in East Malaysia from an airfield in Sabah. The plan is for the programme to operate in three incremental phases. First the system will operate using the basic EO/IR ball currently on the system. In the second phase this will be upgraded to the Thales Agile 2 gyrostabilised payload that the company is also integrating on the Aludra Mk2. In the final phase, UST wil