15 Sep 20. AFA 2020: Boeing resolves KC-46A leaky fuel system issue. Boeing has resolved its issue with leaky KC-46A Pegasus aerial refuelling tanker fuel systems, according to a company spokesman.
Boeing spokesman Larry Chambers said on 14 September during the Air Force Association’s (AFA’s) annual conference that there are no more remaining KC-46As with leaky fuel systems. The US Air Force (USAF) announced in June that 18 KC-46As had problematic fuel systems and that the issue was being upgraded to the service’s most serious deficiency: Category 1.
Boeing on 2 April cited faulty ‘U Cup’ seals for the leaky fuel system as these seals were particularly difficult to install. They were also more sensitive to Boeing’s installation technique than originally thought.
Air Mobility Command (AMC) chief General Jacqueline Van Ovost said on 14 September that she had her hands on the seals during a trip to a Boeing facility the week of 7 September. Gen Van Ovost also said that she had a long conversation with Boeing about its ability to retrofit the tankers and ensure that this was the final fix for these leaky fuel systems.
Every KC-46A will be retrofitted with this fuel system fix. Boeing is paying to repair these fuel systems.
The USAF continues to take deliveries of KC-46As from Boeing. The service accepted two aircraft the week of 7 September and has taken delivery of 38 aircraft overall. (Source: Jane’s)
14 Sep 20. AFA 2020: Collins Aerospace Systems secures new orders for NP2000 propeller system on C-130H aircraft. Collins Aerospace Systems has received an order for an additional 30 of its NP2000 propeller systems to be installed on US Air National Guard (ANG) and Air Force Reserve Lockheed Martin C-130H Hercules medium transport/multirole aircraft, according to a company statement.
With the receipt of this new order, bringing the total order to 55 C-130Hs, Collins Aerospace continues progress toward the USAF’s plan to retrofit roughly 160 C-130H aircraft with the NP2000 system. The NP2000 features eight composite blades and a digital electronic propeller control system (EPCS) that brings a 20% thrust increase during take-off, a 20db sound reduction in the cockpit, and a 50% reduction in maintenance man-hours.
Collins Aerospace Systems is now under contract to deliver 91 NP2000 systems to various Pentagon customers. The company has installed 34 of its 91 NP2000 orders from these Department of Defense customers.
Collins Aerospace Systems has 24 orders from Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) to install new propeller systems on the C/KC-130T aircraft and has installed 17. Collins Aerospace Systems has installed all 10 orders for the NP2000 on the USAF 109th Airlift Wing’s LC-130 aircraft.
The company has also installed its two orders from the USAF Air Worthiness Review (AWR) for the NP2000 on the unit’s C-130H test aircraft. Of its 55 orders for the NP2000 from the Air Force Reserve and ANG for their C-130H platforms, Collins Aerospace Systems has installed five. (Source: Jane’s)
14 Sep 20. AFA 2020: Boeing will not inspect the pylon for B-52H re-engining. Boeing, the lead integrator on the Boeing B-52H Stratofortress heavy bomber re-engining programme, will not physically inspect the pylons on each aircraft, leaving that duty to the US Air Force (USAF).
Jim Kroening, Boeing B-52 Commercial Engine Replacement Program (CERP) manager, told Janes on 9 September that while the company does not plan to inspect each pylon, Boeing’s teams have been able to visit the programme depot maintenance line. Here they observed the aircraft, with the engines and nacelles removed, and looked at the pylon structure and its attachment to the wings.
Boeing, Kroening said, is replacing the pylon and nacelle as part of integrating new engines onto the B-52H from a to-be-determined supplier. It is important to Boeing to understand how that pylon has interfaced with the wing and which forces come into play there regarding the load.
“We do understand what is contained within the existing nacelle and existing strut,” Kroening said ahead of the Air Force Association’s (AFA’s) annual conference the week of 14 September. “Since we are replacing all of that, having a, if you will, compatible design to that is not really imperative on this programme.” (Source: Jane’s)
12 Sep 20. Norway to upgrade its legendary Skjold-class coastal corvettes. The Royal Norwegian Navy has decided to upgrade its legendary Skjold-class coastal corvettes, the world’s fastest combat ships.
The Norwegian defense contractor KONGSBERG has announced that it has signed an agreement with UMOE Mandal AS to cooperate on the life time extension of Skjold-class coastal corvettes.
In collaboration with a significant number of suppliers from the Norwegian maritime industry, UMOE and KONGSBERG offers modern technology to increase military capabilities, and a more sustainable and cost efficient operation of the vessel.
The life time extension of the coastal corvettes will take place at the ship yard in Mandal, Norway in close cooperation with KONGSBERG and other suppliers.
“This life time extension project confirms our close and long-term collaboration with the Norwegian Armed Forces, and maintains the unique capabilities of the vessels. This project will also secure employment in a demanding time for the industry”, says Tom Svennevig, CEO of UMOE Mandal.
UMOE Mandal has constructed and build the Skjold-class coastal corvettes for the Norwegian Armed Forces, and KONGSBERG has been a key supplier of the combat system, and the integration of sub-systems.
“We welcome the government’s proposal to speed up the Skjold-Class upgrade, and consider this to be an important contribution to the Norwegian defence industry in these challenging times. We look forward to this collaboration that challenges us to find efficient solutions and develop technology that will have a positive impact on our nation’s defence capabilities. We also see this as an opportunity to maintain and secure employment in the Norwegian industry”, says Eirik Lie, President of Kongsberg Defence & Aerospace AS.
The Skjold-class missile fast patrol boat, also named as coastal corvette, is characterised by its speed, reduced signatures, small size with heavy weapon load and its littoral combat capability.
The Skjold has an air-cushioned catamaran hull which, with waterjet propulsion, provides high speed and maneuverability. The first-of-class ship, KNM Skjold (P960), was commissioned in April 1999. (Source: Google/https://defence-blog.com/)