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20 Jun 19. Patria to maintain the Norwegian Police helicopters. Patria has signed an agreement with Leonardo Helicopters for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of the Norwegian Police’s new AW169 helicopters. The work will take place in Gardermoen, Oslo Airport, and the agreement covers 10 years.
“This is a significant agreement for us from the strategic point of view. It gives us a new helicopter type to maintain, and we are also able to expand our footprint in Norway. Simultaneously, we are deepening the cooperation with Leonardo. The agreement is a continuation to the maintenance work we are offering to the authorities as we already are maintaining the Swedish Police helicopters since 1964”, says Jukka Holkeri, President of Patria’s International Support Partnerships.
Patria is already a trusted partner in helicopter maintenance in Norway. Patria and the Norwegian Defence Logistics Organisation (NDLO) signed an agreement in 2017 on the support of the Norwegian Defence Forces NH90 helicopters’ maintenance in Bardufoss. The agreement was for two years and included an option for extensions. NDLO has released the first option of one year from April 2019 onwards. Patria has also been contracted to maintain Norwegian Bell 412 helicopters since 2001 and AIM Norway (co-owned by Kongsberg and Patria) is maintaining the new Norwegian AW101 rescue helicopters.
The new AW169 aircraft will enable the Norwegian Police to enhance its capabilities and readiness to counter various threats such as terrorism and other crimes, delivering greater range than the current helicopters in service and rapid response over shorter ranges from other bases, when necessary. The AW169s will perform a range of tasks including observation, surveillance, special operations team transport and airborne sniping, and ensuring high versatility with quick and easy reconfiguration between roles. The specific layout of the Norwegian Police’s helicopters will allow the transport of six people plus crew.
18 Jun 19. Airbus and COSLING provide software solution Optaforce for Mirage 2000 maintenance. Optaforce, a software solution developed by Airbus Defence and Space in partnership with start-up company COSLING to optimise the planning of aircraft maintenance, will be deployed on the French MIRAGE 2000 fleet in autumn 2019. This innovative solution was developed as part of the OptiPlan Challenge launched in 2018 by the French defence procurement agency (DGA) via its DGA Lab, with the support of the French Aeronautical Maintenance Department (DMAé). Optaforce is based on a high-performance optimisation algorithm using Artificial Intelligence and offers an ergonomic interface that can generate multiple planning scenarios.
“In just three months, thanks to intensive collaboration with COSLING, we have successfully created a prototype that meets with the expectations of the DMAé,” said François Lombard, Director of Intelligence Business at Airbus Defence and Space. “Optaforce will help to better manage the resources of the French Air Force.”
Optaforce will maximise aircraft availability, reduce maintenance costs and optimise the use of resources. It will also be possible to manage contingencies and easily reconfigure aircraft for new missions, thus saving time and improving fleet management.
“We built the algorithm by successive iterations integrating the suggestions and remarks of the Chief Warrant Officers as we proceeded. This agile operation allowed us to quickly develop a functional prototype, able to help all stakeholders in their decision making. It was great to build Optaforce with such motivated people and we will continue to work with Airbus and the French armed forces with pride and pleasure,” said Jean-Guillaume FAGES, Co-founder of COSLING.
In addition to managing the Mirage 2000 fleet, the Optaforce solution can be used to optimise the planning of other fleets in service with the French armed forces and, more generally, any fleet covered by a maintenance programme. Optaforce is currently on display at the Paris Air Show 2019 and can be seen at the stand of the French Ministry of the Armed Forces.
19 Jun 19. Airbus launches seven new SmartForce services for military customers. Airbus has launched seven new products for military customers under its digital support services offering SmartForce. With these additions, Airbus expands the SmartForce offering by allowing customers to select the services that best fit the specific requirements of their fleets and aircraft mix. This helps improve availability and mission readiness while reducing the maintenance burden.
These seven new services include three dedicated services for military aircraft, two for military helicopters, and two additional ones shared by both military aircraft and helicopters.
The development of new digital services, through SmartForce, is the Airbus response to the growing requirement of military customers to leverage big data analytics in support of their operations.
The new services, ranging from long-term maintenance scheduling to predictive maintenance as well as automation of administrative tasks associated with aircraft support, have attracted customer and industry support. This includes the French Procurement Agency (DGA – Direction Générale de l’Armement) which, through its technology development programme Optaforce, has partnered with Airbus and start-up COSLING to develop and mature a tool for mixed fixed and rotary-wing fleet management and long-term maintenance scheduling.
Matthieu Louvot, Executive Vice President of Customer Support & Services at Airbus Helicopters, said: “With SmartForce our military customers now have access to the same type of data-driven solutions that are today in use with almost 700 civil helicopters, an achievement that highlights the importance of data analytics for simpler, safer and more efficient maintenance planning and operations.”
Stephan Miegel, Head of Airbus Military Aircraft Services, said: “We currently provide service support to more than 1,600 fixed wing military aircraft. Through our SmartForce offering, customers are enabled to benefit from the digitalisation of these services and the increased benefits this brings in terms of smart fleet and maintenance management and improved availability.”
SmartForce services for military aircraft and helicopter operators improve troubleshooting, optimise the maintenance effort, predict maintenance actions, and plan smartly for material demand. To satisfy military security requirements, SmartForce incorporates robust security measures such as geographic isolation, the use of accredited personnel, and monitoring by national cyber-security authorities.
19 Jun 19. AAR (NYSE: AIR), a leading aviation services provider to commercial airlines and governments worldwide, has been selected as the exclusive distributor for Woodward for the promotion and sale of spare piece parts in support of U.S. Government fleets. As part of this agreement, AAR OEM Solutions is providing piece part distribution for components on multiple platforms including the T700, LM2500 and TF34 engines. Excluded from the agreement are piece parts included in Woodward’s current long-term contracts with the U.S. Government.
“We are excited to partner with Woodward in support of the U.S. Military,” said Eric Young, AAR Senior Vice President of OEM Solutions. “AAR will leverage its experience and unique tools to shorten lead times and increase parts availability.”
“We believe this relationship will provide significant benefits to both our military customers and Woodward, and we are pleased to be partnering with AAR,” said John DiSilvestro, Woodward, Inc. Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Commercial Operations for Aircraft Fuel Systems and Controls.
19 Jun 19. Russia’s Su-25SM3 ‘deep upgrade’ programme gains pace and scope. The Russian Ministry of Defence (MoD) is upgrading its fleet of Sukhoi Su-25 close air support (CAS) aircraft to the Su-25SM3 standard, a Russian military spokesperson toldJane’s on 18 June. “Since 2018, the Aerospace Forces [VKS] have been receiving Su-25SM3s, and a total of 25 aircraft have already been delivered,” he said, adding that “a large part” of operational Su-25s would be upgraded.
According to the spokesperson, the Su-25SM3s are being delivered mainly to the Southern Military District (SMD). “In 2018, the SMD began receiving modernised Su-25s. This spring, the district’s 4th Air Force and Air Defence Army in Stavropol Krai received eight Su-25SM3s, and one more batch of these platforms will be delivered before the end of the year,” he said.(Source: IHS Jane’s)
18 Jun 19. F-35 sustainment target in the sights for BAE Systems. BAE Systems Australia technicians are now working alongside the RAAF to complete on-the-job training as a blended Australian maintenance workforce supporting the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. This is another important step towards BAE Systems Australia achieving an initial depot capability declaration for the support of the Australian F-35 fleet and aircraft across the Asia-Pacific region.
Initial depot capability is scheduled for December this year and is a major milestone for the program. The experience BAE Systems technicians will gain with the 3 Squadron at the RAAF base in Williamtown will build on initial classroom-based training they received at Lockheed Martin’s plant at Fort Worth in 2018.
Darren Shaw, F-35 program manager, said, “Our technicians have quickly demonstrated a high level of expertise and professionalism, which has been recognised by our customer. This is helping establish credibility and trust, the foundations of which our future growth on the program depends.”
Some of the BAE Systems technicians have since returned to Fort Worth to receive Train-The-Trainer training. This will allow them to lead the training of the workforce at Williamtown as the number of people supporting F-35 sustainment increases in the future. The technicians are already experienced in various areas, including mechanical, avionics and structural disciplines.
The additional training at Fort Worth is required so that BAE Systems Australia can establish itself as an approved maintenance organisation for F-35, which is key to the BAE Systems Williamtown site being officially declared an F-35 airframe depot.
“The technicians will lead the growth of the airframe depot from December, which is expected to grow to 400 jobs over the next 10 years,” Shaw added.
The Lockheed Martin F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is billed as a catalyst for the fifth-generation revolution, changing the face and capability of the RAAF and the wider Australian Defence Force.
The F-35A – the variant chosen by the RAAF – will have with a projected life of 30 years in service. Ten nations are currently flying F-35s, including the US, UK, Italy, Norway, Israel and Japan. The first of Australia’s F-35A aircraft are now based on home soil after a period of training and development at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona USA, plus an epic Pacific Ocean crossing In December 2018.
More than 340 F-35s are operating today with partner nations, more than 700 pilots and 6,500 maintainers have been trained, and the F-35 fleet has surpassed more than 170,000 cumulative flight hours.
Over the coming years, Australia will purchase 72 of the advanced fifth-generation fighter aircraft as part of the $17bn AIR 6000 Phase 2A/B program – which is aimed at replacing the ageing F/A-18A/B Classic Hornets that have been in service with the RAAF since 1985. (Source: Defence Connect)
18 Jun 19. The U.S. military’s V-22 joint program office and Raytheon Company (NYSE: RTN) are testing a new artificial intelligence tool to help better determine when repairs are needed to the multi-mode radar installed on U.S. Air Force CV-22 Ospreys.
“Just like you get your car’s oil changed every 5,000 miles, whether you need to or not, the military generally repairs parts on their planes on a set schedule,” said Matt Gilligan, vice president for Raytheon Intelligence, Information and Services. “By using the performance data we’re already collecting on CV-22 radars, an AI tool can instead tell us exactly when the radar may need to be repaired or replaced, keeping the plane in service longer and saving money.”
The capability mirrors how many commercial airlines perform fleet maintenance. For example, some commercial aircraft engine manufacturers can report the exact condition of their engines in real time, along with recommendations on where and when repairs should be conducted.
“We’re always interested in finding new ways to integrate AI tools – especially commercial tools – into our operations,” said Gilligan. “This seemed like the perfect opportunity to test out the concept of using AI for predictive maintenance, something that we’re starting to see being adopted broadly in the commercial world.”
In addition to saving time and money by not doing unnecessary repairs, using AI to predict maintenance needs allows the service to move the right tools, parts and technicians where and when they’re needed.
Raytheon and the Air Force began working on this pilot program in late 2018 and will continue to test this concept in the coming years, with the intent of improving CV-22 readiness as early as 2020.
17 Jun 19. IFS, the global enterprise applications company, and Revima, a leading independent aviation MRO (maintenance, repair & overhaul) solutions provider specialised in APUs, engine parts and landing gear for civil and military aircraft, announce the selection of IFS Applications 10 to drive Revima’s international expansion and support its complex maintenance operations.
Propelled by strong growth, Revima is currently in the process of establishing a new, ultra-modern MRO facility in Thailand. The 130,000-square-foot site will become operational in early 2020 and will provide advanced MRO services for landing gear to customers in the Asia-Pacific region.
“Our accelerated growth coupled with the decision to build a new facility in Thailand were the catalysts for deploying advanced business processes and harmonising them throughout the company,” said Olivier Legrand, President & CEO of Revima. “IFS Applications distinguished itself from the competition through its robust, out-of-the-box MRO capabilities, which are delivered through a modern and intuitive user experience. Another deciding factor was IFS’s numerous customer references in the global aerospace sector.”
Previously running separate solutions for its APU, Engine Parts Repair, and Landing Gear processes, Revima will reap a number of benefits from unifying their business processes on the IFS platform, including:
- Ability to support its complex MRO needs, including workshop monitoring and capital asset pricing modeling (CAPM), using standard functionality of IFS Applications
- Best-in-class user experience that empowers staff with user-friendly and intuitive capabilities
- Open and flexible technology platform that empowers Revima to add cutting-edge technologies such as mobility and IoT to evolve maintenance operations into the future
Amor Bekrar, managing director for IFS in France, added, “Our ability to meet complex MRO needs, combined with our very strong expertise in the heavily regulated aerospace and defence sector, will enable Revima to support its growth and deploy high-performance business processes across its international business. IFS will also help Revima deploy next-generation technologies such as IoT and mobility to accelerate its digital transformation.”
IFS Applications 10 will be deployed at Revima’s facilities in Chonburi, Thailand, Caudebec-en-Caux, and Saint-Ouen-l’Aumône, France, supporting more than 1,000 MRO specialists when fully implemented.
17 Jun 19. The future of the secured aerospace supply chain starts now thanks to Thales technologies.
- Thales is launching IVEN, the first digital marketplace that connects aerospace and defence companies with suppliers of parts and spare parts.
- IVEN acts as a trusted third party to guarantee end-to-end transaction security and data confidentiality.
- The new digital marketplace simplifies purchasing and ensures complete transparency from sourcing to delivery with full traceability.
To help companies operate more competitively and to streamline and optimise purchasing processes, Thales is launching IVEN, the first digital marketplace dedicated to the sale of spare parts for aerospace and defence industries. Built around Thales’s advanced security technologies, IVEN guarantees the integrity and confidentiality of data and communications.
16 Jun 19. L3 Technologies’ (NYSE:LLL) Integrated Aerospace Systems (IAS) business announced today that it is offering a global C-130 Avionics Modernization Program (AMP) solution based on a certified and fielded U.S. Air Force C-130 avionics solution. The offered AMP avionics suite and installation will leverage L3’s existing deliveries to satisfy the avionics upgrade requirements of any C-130H users.
“Having the only U.S. Air Force-certified solution that is flying in both U.S. and international fleets today reduces risk, cost and time-to-field for customers with mission-critical requirements,” said Jon Piatt, Vice President and General Manager of L3’s Integrated Aerospace Systems business area. “We work closely with the Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex C-130 Foreign Military Sales program office and look forward to offering this qualified and affordable upgrade solution.”
The production-ready modernization solution includes the integration of a qualified commercial off-the-shelf Communications, Navigation, Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) avionics suite that can be installed on any C-130H variant at the L3 IAS facility in Waco, Texas.
L3 announced on June 6 a $499m contract award from the U.S. Air Force for upgrade of 176 C-130H aircraft for a program called C-130 Avionics Modernization Program Increment 2.
Interested customers can email the C-130 team at 130excellence@L3T.com, or see our team at the Paris Air Show.
L3 has more than 65 years of experience as an aircraft systems integrator, including modernizing avionics for C-130 aircraft in the U.S. Air Force fleet and for international allies. The company’s tailored C-130 solutions feature a modern cockpit, include open architectures that can integrate avionics from leading providers and are fully certified for airworthiness and CNS/ATM compliance. Learn more about L3’s C-130 solutions at L3T.com/C130.
As part of L3’s ISR Systems business segment, L3 IAS facilities are capable of retrofit, modernization and production for both fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft, delivering a broad range of aerospace modification and integration solutions to keep military, government and commercial customers safe and mission-ready. The division supports aircraft of all types, sizes and missions, with industry-leading capability to provide complex aircraft conversions; maritime, ISR and airborne systems missionization; depot fleet maintenance and modification; and highly customized design, integration and certification of mission subsystems and interiors. (Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
13 June 19. NATO eyes energy-efficient camps via data collection, monitoring. After six years of trial-and-error experimentation, NATO logistics experts say they are close to a breakthrough in achieving more efficient interoperable energy production and consumption for multination camp operations.
Combining new at-source kits for energy monitoring and data collection with hybrid energy production and storage techniques, for example, offers the potential to slash camp power consumption by 40–50% under optimal conditions, said alliance officials. Ultimately, new NATO interoperability standards are expected to emerge from the effort, they said.
NATO’s Exercise ‘Capable Logistician 2019’ (‘CL19’), taking place in Poland from 3 to 19 June, experimented with exploiting data to better control mini-grids and the camp technologies to which they link, from solar-paneled tents to water production kits. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
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.