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13 Sep 18. UK’s WFEL completes military bridge order for Australian Army. UK bridge manufacturer WFEL has completed a multi-million-pound order for the delivery of new tactical military bridge to the Australian Army. The £53m contract is part of the total £600m worth of export orders received by the company over the last ten years. Based in Stockport, the manufacturer was responsible for providing the newly built dry support bridges (DSBs) for the Australian Defence Force (ADF). The deal completion was marked during a visit by UK Defence Procurement Minister Stuart Andrew to the WFEL facility.
Andrew said, “Through WFEL, Stockport is leading the world in military bridges which help troops defeat our enemies and provide essential aid to people in disaster zones. Not only does WFEL bring hundreds of jobs and millions of pounds of investment to the UK, but it enables relations with some of our closest allies to flourish.”
To be used by the army during combat, the DSB military bridge will provide a rapidly deployable temporary infrastructure in order to enable transportation of vital equipment and soldiers through the most challenging terrain.
WFEL chief executive Ian Anderton said, “The adoption of the DSB not only provides the ADF’s Manoeuvre Commanders with the ability to cross significant wet or dry gaps quickly and efficiently, it allows a level of inter-operability with an ever-growing user base.”
In March this year, WFEL delivered the first scheduled tranche of its DSBs and medium girder bridges (MGBs) to the ADF under the Land 155 Enhanced Gap Crossing Capability Project. DSB is a new-generation tactical military bridging system fitted with a 4,417kg parallel module, 4,080kg ramp module, 357kg end beam and a 86kg approach ramp. The 46m-long equipment is constructed using specially made lightweight aluminium alloys and can be laid and launched by eight crew members within 90 minutes. (Source: army-technology.com)
12 Sep 18. Defective rotor parts from Airbus blamed for fatal South Korean helicopter crash. An interim report from a joint investigation into a fatal crash of a South Korean Marine Corps helicopter indicates that defects in the main rotor mast likely caused the accident, according to military sources. The crash of a Marineon, a modified variant of the Surion KUH-1 utility helicopter, occurred July 17 during a test flight at an airfield in the southeastern port city of Pohang. The crash killed five troops. Closed-circuit video footage showed the rotor blades fell apart shortly after takeoff. The rotor mast in question was supplied by Airbus Helicopters, but manufactured by an Airbus contractor, according to investigators. Airbus is the main partner of the Surion development with Korea Aerospace Industries under a 2006 deal. The joint investigation team, which involves civilian and military experts as well as observers, was launched Aug. 8 to find the cause of the accident. Airbus officials are participating in the probe.
“The interim results will be reported to the Ministry of National Defense this week before announcing them by Sept. 17,” a Marine Corps spokesman said. “Investigators have tentatively concluded that cracks in the rotor mast of the Marineon was a main cause of the crash.”
A member of the investigation team told Defense News that his team had found defects in a set of three rotor masts imported from Airbus during parts inspections.
“We found that the strength of a set of three rotor masts imported from Airbus was far lower than the standard, and one of them were confirmed to have been fitted in the crashed Marineon,” the investigator said, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Two other rotor masts in question were fitted in two other Surion troop-carrying helicopter[s] flown by the Army.”
The investigator said Airbus officials have confirmed the defects in the rotor masts.
“As a key supplier, Airbus Helicopter[s] is providing both the manufacturer KAI and the (Korean) authorities every assistance required on this investigation,” Belinda Ng, head of external communications in the Asia-Pacific region, said in a statement. “Although the company cannot respond to ongoing speculation in the media ahead of the preliminary report, there is currently no requirement for follow-up safety actions on any aircraft in our global fleet.”
About 90 Surion helicopters of the South Korean Army have been grounded since the accident. Other civilian Surion variants also stopped flight missions.
“The worst is behind us if the parts problems are confirmed to be true,” a Korea Aerospace Industries spokesman said. “But we’re still cooperating with the investigation to establish the cause of the accident.”
The KAI spokesman said the discussion of exporting Surion helos to the Philippines could restart on the occasion of the third Asian Defence, Security and Crisis Management Exhibition and Conference to be held in Manila from Sept. 26-28. Before the accident, KAI raised hopes for exporting the Surion for the first time, as the Philippines was looking to buy the helicopter as part of efforts to modernize its armed forces.
During his visit to Seoul in June, President Rodrigo Duterte requested South Korean authorities display the Surion so he could board and examine the rotorcraft. Dutere showed interest in purchasing Surion helicopters particularly after his government canceled a deal to acquire 16 Bell 412EPI helicopters from Canada. Pundits, however, believe it could take time for KAI to rebuild its credibility on Surion’s safety in the wake of the accident.
“KAI is not free from its accountability for quality control of products, even if an Airbus contractor is found guilty for delivering defective parts,” said Shin Jong-woo, a senior analyst at the Korea Defense Security Forum, a Seoul-based think tank. “Investigators may have to look into other possible causes of the accident to prevent recurrence of accidents.”
Said Ahn Young-soo, a researcher at the state-funded Korea Institute for Industrial Economics and Trade: “It’s going to take some time to rebuild Surion’s credibility after the fatal crash, but once the cause of the accident was discovered without critical problems with the aircraft design and others, export bids could restart.”
South Korea chose Airbus Helicopters for a new light helicopter development project in 2015. Under the $1.4bn agreement, South Korea would develop a lightweight helicopter with a gross weight of about 4.5 metric tons for both civil and military purposes. According to the agreement, the helicopter would be designed on the basis of the Airbus H155, a wide-cabin derivative of the 1970s-era AS365 Dauphin. The civilian variant would be developed by 2020 and the military version by 2022, with the aim of supplying about 400 units domestically and exporting some 600 units. (Source: Defense News)
12 Sep 18. Tyonek to deliver maintenance support for US Navy aircraft at FRCSE. Tyonek Global Services has secured a new contract award with the US Navy to provide aviation maintenance support to all of the service’s aircraft types. Under the deal, the company will be responsible for providing the navy with depot level maintenance at the service’s Fleet Readiness Center Southeast (FRCSE). Valued at $21m, the contract work will include upgrade, conversion, in-service repairs, disassembly and other DLM services. Tyonek Global Services president Steve Adlich said: “This award demonstrates Tyonek’s ability to consistently provide superior DLM performance and cost-effective execution for our US Navy customer.
“Tyonek is proud of our partnership with the US Navy and our shared commitment to aviation fleet readiness.”
The company will offer employment to more than 340 skilled workers to repair and maintain aircraft, aircraft engines, as well as associated components and materials at the US Navy’s maintenance depots. Through the project, Tyonek Global Services will provide maintenance support services at FRCSE at Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville and NAS Cecil Field in Jacksonville, Florida, and Naval Station (NS) Mayport, Florida, as well as Fleet Readiness Center Mid-Atlantic (FRCMA) at NAS Oceana, Virginia, and NS Norfolk, Virginia. The company also serves as the current prime contractor at the Fleet Readiness Center Mid-Atlantic (FRCMA) in Patuxent River, Maryland, and the managing partner of a joint venture Aircraft Readiness Alliance. (Source: naval-technology.com)
12 Sep 18. Serco to deliver global acquisition and logistics operations to US ASC. The US Army Sustainment Command (ASC) and its subordinate commands are set to receive global acquisition and logistics operations support from professional, technology and management services provider Serco. Awarded under the One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) contract vehicle, the current order will have an estimated total value of $43m, if all options are exercised. The three-year award involves a base period of one year and two one-year option periods. Through the contract, Serco’s support will cover areas such as operational and programme planning, acquisition and contracting, training and exercise, and global logistics management. In addition, the company will be committed in deploying a number of employees to the different US Army locations across the globe in support of the ASC contingency planning and operations with an aim to provide direct onsite support to the command.
Serco chairman and chief executive officer Dave Dacquino said: “Serco is proud of the service that our nation’s military performs at locations around the world.
“Under this programme, we will continue to support our nation’s critical logistics operations to ensure mission readiness and success.”
Work on the project will be carried out at Rock Island Arsenal, in addition to other Continental US (CONUS) and Outside Continental US (OCONUS) locations. The company intends to employ approximately 80 personnel to support the global acquisition and logistics operations support programme. (Source: army-technology.com)
11 Sep 18. Applied DNA Executes New Two-Year Contract with the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency. Continues Support of On-Site SigNature® DNA Program at Land and Maritime Since December 2014. Applied DNA Sciences Inc., (NASDAQ:APDN, “Applied DNA,”), the leader in large-scale PCR-based DNA manufacturing, announced today the signing of a new contract to continue uninterrupted service of the Company’s DNA marking program at the Defense Logistics Agency’s (DLA) Land and Maritime’s Product Test Center (PTC) in Columbus, Ohio. The firm fixed price, indefinite delivery contract (IDC) was awarded on September 6th and spans a two-year period of performance. In addition, the contract allows for a one-year option period to be exercised at the discretion of DLA. The contract outlines the Company’s provision of supplies and services, including creation of unique DNA marks in various inks, QC authentication testing and training. These services and supplies directly support DLA’s counterfeit prevention initiatives, product verification and testing programs specific to FSC 5962 microcircuits in place at the Agency.
“We appreciate the DLA’s continuing support of our taggant technology platform in extending this contract for the marking of system-critical microcircuits,” stated Janice Meraglia, Vice President of Government and Military Programs at Applied DNA. “It is our honor to be part of DLA’s Warfighter First mission that is dedicated to supporting the men and women that protect our country.”
About Applied DNA Sciences
Applied DNA is a provider of molecular technologies that enable supply chain security, anti-counterfeiting and anti-theft technology, product genotyping and DNA mass production for diagnostics and therapeutics. Applied DNA makes life real and safe by providing innovative, molecular-based technology solutions and services that can help protect products, brands, entire supply chains, and intellectual property of companies, governments and consumers from theft, counterfeiting, fraud and diversion. The proprietary DNA-molecular based “CertainT®” platform can be used to identify, tag, test, and track products, to help assure authenticity, origin, traceability, sustainability and quality of products. SigNature® DNA describes the core technology ingredient that is at the heart of a family of uncopyable, security and authentication solutions such as SigNature® T and fiberTyping®, targeted toward textiles and apparel, BackTrac™ and DNAnet®, for anti-theft and loss prevention, and digitalDNA®, providing powerful track-and-trace. All provide a forensic chain of evidence, and can be used to prosecute perpetrators. Applied DNA Sciences is also engaged in the large-scale production of specific DNA sequences using the polymerase chain reaction. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
10 Sep 18. BAE Systems Regional Aircraft Wins £42m Contract From UK MoD. BAE Systems has been awarded a four-year £42m contract from the UK Ministry of Defence for the support of the Command Support Air Transport (CSAT) fleet of four BAe 146 jetliners operated by 32 (The Royal) Squadron from RAF Northolt in West London. The contract commenced on March 1, 2018 and runs until 2022. There are options in the contract for extensions of one or two years. If the two-year extension is taken up, the contract value will increase to £60m. The BAE Systems Regional Aircraft team joined with Serco to win the contract through a competitive tender process. The BAE Systems-led team will deliver a 20% increase in aircraft availability for a reduced operational cost. The new agreement – known as the BAe 146 In-Service Support Availability Contract – is an availability-based contract which includes maintenance of airframe, engines, avionics and electrical, provision of spares and total supply chain management, the management of Government Furnished Assets, and interior aircraft cleaning and maintenance. Serco, which had provided support at RAF Northolt for over 20 years, will be responsible for all maintenance aspects of the contract, including airframe, engines, avionics and electrical, and interior aircraft cleaning and maintenance. Through its experienced resource at RAF Northolt, Serco will also provide a pool of sponsored reserves to support the aircraft when deployed on operations outside the UK. Under the availability element of the contract the BAE Systems-led team will ensure delivery of three out of the four aircraft to be available for tasking at 0700 hours on weekdays and two of the four aircraft available at 0700 hours at weekends.
Mr Sean McGovern, Managing Director of BAE Systems Regional Aircraft said, “We are delighted to have won this prestigious contract. Working with our partner Serco, we aim to deliver a first-class service to our customer to reduce costs, and give clearer visibility of our performance. We have also worked closely with our colleagues from BAE Systems Air sector to learn from their Typhoon, Tornado and Hawk availability contracts for the Royal Air Force in order to provide the best possible service to our customer.”
Giles Francis, Director, Air for Serco, said: “We are proud to have been supporting the RAF at RAF Northolt for the past 20 years. We have a great team at the base and we are excited at the prospect of working with BAE Systems on this new contract.”
The BAe 146 fleet consists of two BAe 146-100s – originally delivered in 1986 to The Queen’s Flight at RAF Benson – and designated in RAF service as the BAe 146 CC Mk2, along with two BAe 146-200QC (Quick Change) variants with a large freight door in the rear fuselage. BAE Systems converted the latter aircraft and delivered them to the RAF in 2013 when they were designated as the BAe 146 C Mk3. (Source: News Now/http://aviationtribune.com)
10 Sep 18. Lockheed Martin’s eCASS will support F-35C in 2020. Key Points:
- Lockheed Martin’s eCASS automated test equipment will support the F-35C in 2020
- eCASS is designed to enable aircraft to return to operational status quickly and efficiently
Lockheed Martin’s electronic Consolidated Automated Support System (eCASS) will support the F-35C Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft carrier variant in 2020 thanks to a recent US Navy (USN) contract. The USN recently awarded Lockheed Martin a roughly USD58m contract for full-rate production (FRP) of 26 eCASSs over the next two years. The deal is firm-fixed-price, cost-plus-fixed-fee, cost reimbursable, according to a Pentagon statement.
Laura Frank, Lockheed Martin vice-president of enterprise sustainment solutions, told Jane’s recently that eCASS is designed to be extended to new subsystems. In the case of F-35C, Frank said eCASS will be working on an avionics-focused subsystem in about 18 months.
eCASS maximises aircraft readiness by averting the repair of avionics at the next level of maintenance or sending the parts back to the original equipment manufacturer (OEM), according to a Lockheed Martin statement. Sailors use eCASS to troubleshoot and repair aircraft electronics ashore and at sea, enabling them to return aircraft such as the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet and the Northrop Grumman E-2D Advanced HawkEye to operational status quickly and efficiently.
Frank said maintainers remove avionics from aircraft scheduled to receive maintenance and connects it to the eCASS station. eCASS, she said, then automatically identifies corrective action necessary to fix the problematic subsystem. Frank said once the maintainer performs the required maintenance, he or she then reconnects the avionics to eCASS, which automatically certifies the avionics and declares that it is ready for use. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
10 Sep 18. BAE Australia Welcomes 3rd Anzac Class Ship to Henderson. BAE Systems Australia has welcomed a third ANZAC class warship to its Henderson facility as part of the fleet upgrade to keep the ships in service until they are replaced by the Hunter class frigates. The Mid Life Capability Assurance Program (AMCAP) upgrade is being undertaken at Henderson by the Warship Asset Management Agreement (WAMA) Alliance. HMAS Anzac’s docking marks a significant milestone for BAE Systems, where it joins sister ships Perth and Arunta. This will be the first time that three warships have been on the hardstand at the Henderson facility. HMAS Anzac will be the second ship to receive the AMCAP upgrade which includes:
Upgraded ventilation systems;
New sewage systems;
Improvements to the diesel engines to improve power and efficiency;
Replacement of the air search radar capability with the Australian CEA L-Band radar; and
Replacement of the full communications suite on the ship.
BAE Systems Australia Chief Executive, Gabby Costigan, said:
“The upgrade of the ANZAC fleet, through our role in the WAMA alliance, demonstrates the breadth and depth of work that BAE Systems Australia has done to date in the sustainment of the ANZAC class fleet over more than two decades.
“BAE Systems is an Australian industry leader in maritime sustainment. We are very proud of the skilled workforce capacity that we have grown to meet the technical challenges of maritime sustainment.”
HMAS Arunta, the first of class AMCAP ship, most recently had her old mast removed to make way for the installation of a newly developed Air Search Radar System. The new mast is currently being manufactured by BAE Systems and scheduled to be installed at the end of October.
Australian company CEA Technologies is responsible for developing the new Air Search Radar System that complements the existing Anti-Ship Missile Defence system. HMAS Arunta will undock before the end of the year after having spent more than 12 months on the hard stand. She will then undertake sea trials ahead of a planned return to service in 2019. The remaining seven ships will be back in service by 2023. (Source: ASD Network)
10 Sep 18. European F-35 fighter jet users push to drive down operating costs. The U.S. military and European operators of the radar-evading F-35 fighter jet have agreed to work together more closely to help lower the cost of operating the new warplanes as growing numbers arrive in Europe, officials said. Operating costs were a big issue when senior military officials from the United States, Israel and F-35 user nations in Europe – Britain, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Turkey, the Netherlands – met in Germany last week, they said.
“We discussed the importance of ensuring that future costs – specifically for sustainment – are kept to a minimum so that we don’t have to cut into future purchases,” U.S. Air Force Colonel Leslie Hauck, who heads the fifth generation integration office at the U.S. Air Force headquarters in Europe, told Reuters.
U.S. Air Force Chief of Staff General David Goldfein this year launched a big push to drive down the cost of flying and servicing the Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) jets to the same levels as current fighters without stealth capabilities.
Experts say the Air Force – the biggest buyer of the F-35 – could cut back its planned purchase of 1,763 aircraft unless it can lower the cost of flying the world’s most advanced fighter aircraft.
The latest Pentagon selected acquisition report on the programme put the cost per flying hour of the F-35 at around $30,000 per flying hour in 2012 dollars, compared to around $25,500 per hour for an older-generation F-16 fighter. Fuel cost changes could boost that sum in inflation-adjusted dollars.
The cost of buying new jets has come down and is expected to reach $80m per aircraft by 2020, but more work is needed to reduce the cost of operating the jets, Hauck said. He said the Air Force wanted to cut the operating cost by 38 percent.
He said air chiefs from the user nations discussed the issue at the Royal International Air Tattoo, the world’s largest military air show, in England in July, and it would be a key focal point during a working-group meeting in November. The Pentagon’s F-35 programme office last week said it would compile and distribute information from users about maintenance procedures, staffing requirements and other key metrics.
“There are things that we can do with our group. But there’s not a good mechanism now to share the lessons learned,” Hauck said, noting that his office was also reaching out to F-35 users in Asia – Japan, Australia and South Korea – for their input.
Together the allies will have some 64 F-35s in Europe by 2019 and 550 by 2034, General Tod Wolters, the head of U.S. and NATO air forces in Europe, told officials at last week’s meeting. The first U.S. F-35s are set to arrive in 2021. (Source: Reuters)
11 Sep 18. HMAS Anzac set to start latest warship upgrade program. The second Australian Anzac Class frigate has started an upgrade designed to keep the eight Anzacs in service until they are replaced by the new Hunter Class frigates next decade. This work, termed the Midlife Capability Assurance Program (AMCAP) upgrade, is being performed at the BAE Systems Australia yard at Henderson, Western Australia, by the Warship Asset Management Agreement (WAMA) alliance. The WAMA partnership was launched in 2016 to support the Anzacs and includes BAE Systems Australia, Saab Australia, Naval Ship Management and the Commonwealth of Australia. It’s worth more than $2bn over eight years.
BAE Systems Australia chief executive Gabby Costigan said the upgrade of the Anzac fleet through the WAMA alliance demonstrated the breadth and depth of work of BAE Systems Australia in sustaining the Anzacs over more than two decades.
“BAE Systems is an Australian industry leader in maritime sustainment. We are very proud of the skilled workforce capacity that we have grown to meet the technical challenges of maritime sustainment,” she said.
HMAS Anzac joins sister ships HMAS Perth and HMAS Arunta, the first time three warships have been on the Henderson hardstand. Anzac will be the second ship to receive the AMCAP upgrade. That includes an upgraded ventilation system, new sewage system, improvements to the diesel engines to improve power and efficiency, replacement of the air search radar with the Australian CEA L-Band radar and replacement of the full ship communications suite. HMAS Arunta, the first to undergo the AMCAP upgrade, most recently had her old mast removed to make way for the installation of the new air search radar system. Her new mast is currently being manufactured by BAE Systems and will be installed at the end of October.
Canberra company CEA Technologies is responsible for developing the new air search radar system, which complements the existing anti-ship missile defence system. HMAS Arunta will undock before the end of the year after having spent more than 12 months on the hardstand. She will then undertake sea trials ahead of a planned return to service in 2019. The remaining seven ships will be back in service by 2023. (Source: Defence Connect)
10 Sep 18. L-3 Communications Vertex Aerospace LLC, Madison, Mississippi, is awarded $202,936,338 for modification P00029 to a previously awarded indefinite-delivery requirements contract (N00019-14-D-0011) to exercise an option for organizational, intermediate, and depot level maintenance, logistics, and engineering support for Navy T-45 aircraft, aircraft systems, and related support equipment for flight and test and evaluation operations. Work will be performed at the Naval Air Station (NAS) Kingsville, Texas (45.7 percent); NAS Meridian, Mississippi (41.7 percent); NAS Pensacola, Florida (10.1 percent); and NAS Patuxent River, Maryland (2.5 percent), and is expected to be completed in September 2019. No funds will be obligated at time of award; funds will be obligated on individual orders as they are issued. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.
10 Sept 18. US Army completes 19% retrofit of AH-64 Apache strap pack nuts. The US Army is carrying out a retrofit of the strap pack of its Boeing AH-64 Apache attack helicopter fleet. Nearly 19% completion has been achieved by the service with the retrofit of the helicopters. The project is to be concluded by the third quarter of next year. Known as mega-nuts, the strap pack helps connect the rotor heads of the Apache helicopters to their air frame and prevents the blades from spinning off during flight. Eight strap pack nuts are used to connect the rotor blades on an AH-64 Apache aircraft to its air frame. Earlier this year, the US Army was challenged with a safety concern related to the adverse effect of severe weather conditions and salt in coastal areas on the aircraft fleet. In February, the US Army Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM) issued guidance to carry out strict pre-flight and post-flight inspections of the strap pack nuts on all Apache helicopters deployed with the army. Until completion of the inspections, the US Army has temporarily cancelled the delivery of new AH-64E Apache multi-role combat helicopters. Under the current strap pack upgrade project, two battalions are being refitted every month. US Army AMCOM commander major general Douglas M. Gabram said: “We’re doing major surgery on every one of our main rotor heads. Why: to reduce the burden on the soldier, because we don’t want to borescope this thing for the rest of our life, every day.” In March last year, Boeing and the US Government signed a five-year contract, worth $3.4bn, for the acquisition of 244 remanufactured AH-64E Apache helicopters by the US Army and another 24 new aircraft by an international customer. (Source: army-technology.com)
About Oshkosh Defense
Oshkosh Defense is a leading provider of tactical wheeled vehicles and life cycle sustainment services. For decades Oshkosh has been mobilizing military and security forces around the globe by offering a full portfolio of heavy, medium, light and highly protected military vehicles to support our customers’ missions. In addition, Oshkosh offers advanced technologies and vehicle components such as TAK-4® independent suspension systems, TerraMax™ unmanned ground vehicle solutions, Command Zone™ integrated control and diagnostics system, and ProPulse® diesel electric and on-board vehicle power solutions, to provide our customers with a technical edge as they fulfill their missions. Every Oshkosh vehicle is backed by a team of defense industry experts and complete range of sustainment and training services to optimize fleet readiness and performance. Oshkosh Defense, LLC is an Oshkosh Corporation company [NYSE: OSK].
To learn more about Oshkosh Defense, please visit us at www.oshkoshdefense.com.