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23 Jan 20. Cambridge industrial behemoth Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group has ditched IWM Duxford from a shortlist of three potential new UK locations. It leaves a straight choice between Cranfield and RAF Wyton in St Ives for a new HQ – and the Bedfordshire site would appear to be vastly superior, in terms of facilities and required investment spend. A decision will be taken as soon as possible this year.
The only signifiant factor Wyton would appear to have in its favour is that so many of Marshall ADG’s 1500 staff live in north Cambridgeshire so travel to work tyreprint would be reduced if Marshall cold-shouldered Cranfield, which is around 38 miles away. But Wyton has already been deemed inadequate once before – back in April 2010.
IWM Duxford was named as a potential relocation option for the business when it announced its intention to move out of Cambridge by 2030. But after uncovering a number of insurmountable issues, both Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group and Imperial War Museums have now reluctantly agreed IWM Duxford is no longer a feasible option.
Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group CEO, Alistair McPhee, said: “We had identified an area of land at IWM Duxford situated to the far South-West of the existing airfield that did not impact areas of historical interest or require complex infrastructure upgrades.
“Initially this appeared to be an ideal location, giving us more than enough space to accommodate existing and future requirements, however as we progressed our due diligence we hit a very significant challenge in terms of the need for reclassification of airspace that would have made any sort of aerobatics from the airfield virtually impossible.
“As part of our operational discussions with IWM and the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) it became apparent that the airspace above our buildings would need to be classified as a no-fly zone.
“This, along with the existing restrictions over Duxford village, would massively restrict the ability for historic aircraft to take off safely for air display and we said at the outset that we would not engage in a plan that in any way compromised the historical integrity of the site.
“In partnership with IWM we have worked very hard to find a way around this challenge by either re-routing the take-off, flight path and landing of aircraft participating in displays but unfortunately none of these options have proved feasible.
“We’ve also looked at alternative locations within the existing IWM campus but again have not been able to find a viable option and therefore, very reluctantly, both parties have now agreed that all possible avenues have been explored.
“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the team from IWM and members of local government for all of the support and hard work they have put into this project and I know they are as disappointed as we are that we could not find a way to make it work.”
Marshall Aerospace and Defence Group remains confident it will be in a position to confirm its preferred option during 2020 as planned.
Vacating the Newmarket Road, Cambridge site will provide space for 12,000 homes and 5 million sq ft of business and commercial space, creating a large number of new jobs as well as crucial residential and commercial capacity for Cambridge. (Source: Google/https://www.businessweekly.co.uk/)
21 Jan 20. Australian Navy unveils new centralised warfare centre. The Royal Australian Navy has opened a centralised warfighting agency, the Maritime Warfare Centre, to improve the lethality of the navy during conflict. By amalgamating the Royal Australian Navy Test and Evaluation Authority (RANTEA) and Australian Maritime Warfare Centre (AMWC) into a centralised body, the new centre will offer support to the existing and future capabilities to fight and win at sea. The merger will also take navy warfighting to the next level.
Maritime Warfare Centre director Captain David Frost said that the agency will provide expanded test and evaluation, tactical development and operational analysis throughout the capability life cycle.
Frost added: “The First Principles Review and the National Naval Shipbuilding Enterprise has driven (the) navy to re-think how they provide warfighting support.
“Continuous shipbuilding requires continuous design, testing, and tactical development, and (the) navy is evolving to meet this challenge.”
Located at Garden Island in Sydney, the new warfighting agency will enable the Australian Navy to be prepared to cater to the demands of a rapidly growing modern Navy in partnership with Defence and Industry.
Frost further noted that new Test and Tactics Development teams will be in place to support Navy Programs from inception to completion.
These teams will plan, collect and analyse data that will inform critical decisions with respect to current and future systems.
In partnership with agencies, warfare programme and operational analysis teams will develop plans across sea control, littoral, integrated air and missile defence and information warfare domains.
“These plans are expected to ensure the right systems are tested at the right time to support the right decisions,” Frost added.
Recently, St Hilliers completed the Royal Australian Navy’s (RAN) $24m training systems centre expansion at Randwick Barracks. (Source: naval-technology.com)
23 Jan 20. Indonesia’s first indigenously assembled submarine concludes trials. Indonesian state-owned shipbuilder PT PAL (Persero) has announced the successful conclusion of diving trials of the country’s first indigenously assembled submarine, Alugoro 405. Built at the PT PAL Indonesia submarine facility, Alugoro 405 is a Nagapasa-class diesel-electric submarine and is the third in the class. The submarines are built in cooperation with South Korea’s Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering (DSME) as part of an agreement in March 2011. On 20 January, the tests were conducted in the waters of Banyuwangi in the East Java and Bali Sea. The trials included a nominal diving depth (NDD) phase, which is part of the Sea Acceptance Test (SAT). PT PAL Submarine Division head Satriyo Bintoro said that the successful completion of the NDD test implies that 90% of the construction process is successful.
The submarine has an expected delivery date of December 2020 to the Indonesian Navy. It will be handed over to the navy after several testing processes and Harbor Acceptance Test (HAT) and SAT.
The diving test was reviewed by the project officer of the Ministry of Defense. PT PAL Indonesia director Budiman Saleh and DSME executive vice-president Su Joon Yoo also witnessed the trial.
In April last year, South Korean shipbuilder DSME was awarded a contract to build three submarines for Indonesia with the support of PT PAL.
Produced with a scheme of technology transfer with DSME, the diesel-electric submarine is 6.13m-long with a maximum speed of 21 knots when diving and 12 knots when on the surface.
The vessel has a displacement of 1,400t and a range of 10,000 nautical miles. (Source: naval-technology.com)
21 Jan 20. Two more Type 056A corvettes enter service with PLAN. Two more anti-submarine warfare (ASW)-capable Type 056A (Jiangdao)-class corvettes have entered service with China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). The first, Lu’an (pennant number 611), was commissioned on 18 January, while Liaocheng (608) was commissioned the following day. The ships, which have a full load displacement of 1,500 tonnes, are the 49th and 50th Type 056/056A corvettes to enter service with the PLAN. Lu’an was built at the Hudong Zhonghua shipyard in Shanghai and entered the water on 21 December 2017. The commissioning ceremony took place at the East Sea Fleet’s Shanghai-Wusong naval base and the ship is likely to have joined the 14th Frigate Squadron, operating from Wusong. (Source: Jane’s)
23 Jan 20. Kenya commissions MD 530F helicopters. The Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) announced on 23 January that its chief, General Samson Mwathethe, had commissioned its “next-generation” MD 530F light attack helicopters at the Embakasi base in Nairobi. The United States approved the sale of 12 MD 530Fs along with FN Herstal .50 cal heavy machine gun pods and 70 mm rocket pods to Kenya in 2017 to replace the MD 500s flown by the Kenyan Army’s 50th Air Cavalry Battalion. Nairobi subsequently ordered six. (Source: Jane’s)
17 Jan 20. Spain takes delivery of last Tiger helicopter. Spain has taken delivery of the last of 24 Tiger helicopters, an HAD-E (Helicóptero de Apoyo y Destrucción) attack version. Known as the Tigre in Spain, it was handed over at Airbus Helicopters’ Albacete plant on 14 January at a ceremony attended by Secretary of State for Defence Ángel Olivares and army chief of staff Lieutenant General Francisco Javier Varela Salas. A total of 18 HAD and six HAP-E (Helicóptero de Apoyo y Protección) versions have been produced. Like its predecessors, the latest delivery will be part of the Fuerzas Aeromóviles del Ejército de Tierra’s (Army Airmobile Forces’: FAMET’s) Batallón de Helicópteros de Ataque (Helicopter Attack Batallion) I based at Almagro. (Source: Jane’s)
20 Jan 20. New helo sees Honduras become first Central American nation to field naval aviation. Honduras has become the first Central American nation to field naval aviation, with the arrival of a surplus Eurocopter BO 105 helicopter. The helicopter, received on 15 January, will operate from the recently acquired General Cabañas off-shore patrol vessel (OPV). The first landing of the helicopter aboard the OPV while docked at harbour took place the following day. According to the Honduran Navy, sea trials of the helicopter and OPV will begin shortly. Although a navy asset, the BO 105 will be flown by air force pilots. The General Cabañas is an OPV 62M-type vessel, based on the SAAR 4.5 corvettes built by Israel Shipyards. (Source: Jane’s)
21 Jan 20. The first CMV-22B Osprey, built by Boeing [NYSE: BA] and Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, completed first flight operations at Bell’s Amarillo Assembly Center. The CMV-22B is the latest variant of the tiltrotor fleet, joining the MV-22 and CV-22 used by the U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force.
The U.S. Navy will use the CMV-22B to replace the C-2A Greyhound for transporting personnel, mail, supplies and high-priority cargo from shore bases to aircraft carriers at sea. Bell Boeing designed the Navy variant specifically for carrier fleet operations by providing increased fuel capacity for the extended range requirement. The mission flexibility of the Osprey will increase operational capabilities and readiness, in addition to ferrying major components of the F-35 engine.
“With the ability to travel up to 1,150 nautical miles, the CMV-22B will be a lifeline for our servicemen and women out at sea,” said Kristin Houston, vice president, Boeing Tiltrotor Programs and director, Bell Boeing V-22 Program. “The quality and safety built into this aircraft will revolutionize the way the U.S. Navy fulfills its critical carrier onboard delivery mission.”
Bell Boeing will deliver the first CMV-22B to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (HX) 21 in early 2020 for developmental test.
MILITARY AND GOVERNMENT
23 Jan 20. Dutch Navy allows female sailors in submarine services. The Dutch Navy is allowing female sailors in its fleet of submarines after the successful completion of a test involving the participation of women. NLTimes.nl quoted the government as saying in a statement that the women functioned as ‘one of the crew’ during the year-long experiment.
In the Royal Netherlands Navy (RNLN), sailing positions were open only to men as no separate facilities were offered onboard the existing submarines. Women failed to perform all functions in this Armed Forces’ Submarine Service.
NAVALNEWS quoted the Dutch Ministry of Defense as saying: “It was already certain that women would be admitted to the submarine service, but only then with the arrival of new ships equipped for mixed crews.
“The situation in (Nato) partner countries, however, showed that separate onboard facilities are not necessary and sometimes hinder integration.”
Based on a joint study carried out in Australia and Canada, it was found that strict separation in living areas, as well as sanitary facilities, had a negative impact on the integration of female crew members on board.
Following this, the navy decided to experiment with the ‘one of the crew’ concept. As part of this, no separate facilities were provided for women on board, and both women and men were treated equally.
Submarine Service group commander Captain Herman de Groot said that the test allowed the navy to be able to determine the rules of conduct that need to be introduced to enable women to participate in submarine services.
Only small adjustments were made to create more privacy for women.
AFP reported that a female student recently entered Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF), which had previously only allowed men to serve on submarines.
The MSDF amended the rules in 2018 after assessing that gender-specific privacy needs can be met without major submarine remodelling.
After the restrictions were overturned, Saki Takenouchi entered the academy along with around 20 other men. (Source: naval-technology.com)
22 Jan 20. Czech Army Creates Unmanned Systems Battalion.
The Czech army has launched its new 533 Unmanned Systems Battalion. Currently the country’s armed forces operate a number of small drones, but according to Chief of the General Staff Aleš Opata, the army will soon buy at least one larger, heavier unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), capable of both reconnaissance and combat.
It may be primarily known for its historic centre and local fashion brand, but the Moravian town of Prostějov is also closely tied with the Czech Army, housing its crack 601 Special Forces Group.
Since January 1, 2020, there is a new addition the local military base. The 533 Unmanned Systems Battalion is a freshly formed unit tasked with operating drones. All of the army’s pilotless systems will be integrated into this newly formed battalion, says Chief of the General Staff Aleš Opata.
“It is the future. He who has information wins wars. It is about battlefield information in all of the domains that the army is engaged in nowadays. This segment is expanding dynamically and we are moving into a new dimension of technologies which the Czech Army should possess.”
Currently the army has publicly disclosed it has several small unmanned aerial vehicles under the weight of 22 kilograms at its disposal. They include the American made RQ-11B Raven and the ScanEagle, both are used for reconnaissance. General Opata says that within a space of two years the army will begin the purchasing process for a heavier drone weighing up to 1,200 kilograms.
“We will begin the acquisition of an operational unmanned aerial vehicle which, apart from being equipped with sensors, will also carry weapons systems. This will be the second and final phase in the process of forming the battalion.”
According to Czech Television, the new drone will also carry systems capable of electronic warfare.
With the project still in the preparation phase, the chief of the general staff is unwilling to disclose whether only one such UAV will be bought, or whether there will be more.
The new battalion will eventually reach the size of 300 service members, its commander Major Jan Štrbík told Czech Television.
“The battalion will primarily be concerned with centralising the training for all unmanned systems in the Czech Army. Furthermore, we will be dealing with legislation and process management as well as some aspects connected with intelligence.”
The unit will analyse data secured through the unmanned systems. Colonel Petr Šnajdárek, an expert on the subject within the Czech Army’s general staff, explains.
“This concerns analysing image data and providing timely warning against dangers that may arise during combat, and other measures. If we are talking specifically about tasks concerned with the territory of the Czech Republic, there is also a role within the country’s integrated rescue system.”
While the unit is expected to reach basic operational capability by October, it will only become fully operational by January 2025. (Source: UAS VISION/Radio Prague International)
21 Jan 20. US Marine Corps set sights on info ops with new command-level units. The US Marine Corps (USMC) hopes to enhance its new cadre of command-level information operations (IO) units among component commands throughout the US armed forces’ regional combatant commands, as part of a wider Pentagon effort to gain the upper hand in increasingly competitive information warfare.
These new Marine Corps units, dubbed Marine Expeditionary Force Information Groups (MIGs), are meant to help battlefield commanders address efforts by China, Russia, and other adversaries to thwart US national security priorities or operations, using misinformation and disinformation distributed through social media and other means of communications across the digital landscape, said deputy commandant for information Lieutenant General Lori Reynolds. (Source: Jane’s)
21 Jan 20. RAF chiefs approve increase in C-130J crews. The number of RAF C-130J crews will be increased from 20 to 28. UK Royal Air Force (RAF) chiefs have approved an uplift of aircrew and supporting engineering resources for their C-130J Hercules tactical airlift fleet in response to an accident report into the loss of an aircraft in the Middle East in August 2017, which highlighted personnel shortfalls as a factor in the incident.
In-year funding to increase C-130J crews from 20 to 28 was approved by RAF Air Command on 26 September 2019, according to a UK Freedom of Information (FOI) release sent to Jane’s by the command’s secretariat at RAF High Wycombe on 20 January.
Funding to sustain the additional crews to the C-130Js’ out-of-service date of 2035 was approved by Air Command on 23 October 2019, according to the FOI response.
“The funding for both [items] came on line immediately on implementation,” said the Air Command Secretariat, which added that both decisions “were approved by Air Command Director of Resources within the overall Air Command delegated budget”.
The Air Command Secretariat declined to provide specific numbers of personnel assigned to 47, 24, and 206 Squadrons, which operate and support the RAF’s 14 C-130Js from RAF Brize Norton in Oxfordshire, or the cost of the uplift package, citing operational security issues. According to the RAF website, its C-130Js usually fly with two pilots, one ground engineer (loadmaster) and a weapons systems operator, suggesting the uplift will involve at least 32 additional crews.
Investigators from the UK’s Defence Safety Authority expressed concern in a report released in May 2019 that crew shortages and overtasking had contributed to the accident in August 2017. This involved an RAF C-130J being written off after a heavy landing in Syria forced it to make an emergency recovery to an airfield in Iraq. The investigators recommended increasing the number of crews to 28 to make the Hercules fleet sustainable. (Source: Jane’s)
23 Jan 20. BG Evan C. Dertien, director, Air, Space and Cyberspace Operations, Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, to commander, Air Force Research Laboratory, Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.
23 Jan 20. BG select Matthew W. Higer, commander, Data Masked, Headquarters Air Force Materiel Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, to commander, 412th Test Wing, Air Force Test Center, Air Force Materiel Command, Edwards Air Force Base, California.
23 Jan 20. BG Ernest J. Teichert III, commander, 412th Test Wing, Air Force Test Center, Air Force Materiel Command, Edwards Air Force Base, California, to senior defense official and defense attaché-Iraq, U.S. Embassy, Baghdad, Iraq.
17 Jan 20. BG select Jefferson J. O’Donnell, director, Air Force Colonel Management Office, Deputy Chief of Staff, Manpower, Personnel and Services, Pentagon, Washington, District of Columbia, to senior defense official and defense attaché-United Kingdom, Defense Intelligence Agency, U.S. Embassy, London, United Kingdom.
REST OF THE WORLD APPOINTMENTS
22 Jan 20. MG Susan Coyle has assumed command of Joint Task Force 633 in the Middle East, taking over from Rear Admiral Mark Hill during a ceremony held at the Australian main operating base. As Commander of Joint Task Force 633, MAJGEN Coyle is responsible for in-theatre command and control of all Australian Defence Force operations in the Middle East region, including the oversight of over 1,200 Defence personnel. Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds said MAJGEN Coyle was previously Commander 6th Combat Support Brigade and has extensive operational experience in the Middle East, as well as a previous 12-month deployment to Afghanistan, which makes her ideal for this role. (Source: Defence Connect)
17 Jan 20. Airbus Helicopters appoints Laurence Petiard as Head of External Communications. Laurence Petiard has been appointed Head of External Communications for Airbus Helicopters, effective January 2020. In this new role, she will be in charge of coordinating Airbus Helicopters’ media relations, web, and social media activities. Laurence has worked for the last five years in the Airbus Helicopters media relations department, where she was in charge of external communications for a variety of civil and military helicopter programmes, while also acting as the main contact for French media, amongst others. She has been with the company since 2005 in various project management roles, including four and half years with the H160 programme team. (Source: ASD Network)
23 Jan 20. Omnidex, global provider of world-class engineering and manufacturing services for more than 17 years, has appointed former Royal Air Force Flying Officer Paul Smith as its new UK Sales Director. Paul brings to the British-owned and managed Omnidex organisation – operating as Omnidex Ltd in the UK – 25 years of sales, international business development and technical expertise in the outsourcing, supply chain, manufacturing and product development sectors. He also has considerable experience of running UK and international engineering and manufacturing operations as well as establishing complex global sourcing and supply chains. Having spent his early career serving in the RAF, Paul subsequently held senior roles in UK industry and has an extensive technical understanding of materials, processes and testing. He is vastly experienced in casting, extrusion, fabrication, machining, moulding, manufacturing and sourcing from the UK, Europe and Asia. Among previous positions he has held are Sales VP at Xerox, CEO of a global supplier of engineering and precision components to energy, automotive, aerospace and defence sectors, Managing Director of a leading manufacturer and distributor of a range of metal products and Head of Business Development at a laser cutting specialist.
22 Jan 20. Curtiss-Wright Corporation (NYSE: CW) today announced the promotions of Lynn M. Bamford and Kevin M. Rayment to the newly created position of Segment President, effective January 1, 2020. Ms. Bamford has been named President of the Defense and Power Segments, while Mr. Rayment has been named President of the Commercial / Industrial Segment. Each will report directly to David Adams. Most recently, Ms. Bamford was Senior Vice President and General Manager, Defense Solutions division, while Mr. Rayment was Senior Vice President and General Manager, Industrial division.
REST OF THE WORLD APPOINTMENTS
20 Jan 20. Former defence minister and Australian War Memorial director Brendan Nelson has been appointed to run aerospace and defence giant Boeing’s operations in Australia. The Chicago-headquartered Boeing said on Monday Dr Nelson would commence as president of Boeing Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific on February 11. He will be the company’s senior leader in the region and oversee 3800 employees working across commercial plane manufacturing, military systems, services and research and development. (Source: glstrade.com/https://www.smh.com.au/)
20 Jan 20. CAE announced the appointment of Todd Probert as Group President, Defence & Security, effective January 27, 2020. He will be based in Washington, DC and is succeeding Gene Colabatistto, who retired from CAE in December 2019. Mr. Probert worked for Raytheon, the world’s fourth largest defence company, over the past 10 years. Most recently, he was leading the Command, Control, Space & Intelligence business unit as part of Raytheon’s Intelligence, Information and Services segment. In this role, he spearheaded Raytheon’s use of commercial software development practices and artificial intelligence for military and intelligence community customers in addition to establishing strategic relationships with Silicon Valley companies. He previously served as the Vice President of Raytheon’s Mission Support & Modernization product line where he steadily grew the business during his tenure. He has formed innovative partnerships with leading tech companies to transform the development timelines and delivery of capabilities to the U.S. Department of Defense in areas such as fully open architectures, artificial intelligence and cyber security. He also held the position of Vice President, Engineering and Technology, where he managed the engineering workforce for Raytheon’s Intelligence, Information and Services portfolio. Before joining Raytheon, Mr. Probert worked for Honeywell Technology Solutions, Inc. (HTSI) in various functions such as strategy and business development, planning and operations, merger and acquisition activities, and he also served as HTSI’s Chief Technology Officer. Prior to that, he worked for ANSER, where he led the Space Technology division. (Source: PR Newswire)
20 Jan 20. Unmanned Systems Canada Appoints Declan Sweeney as Interim Executive Director. Unmanned Systems Canada / Systèmes Télécommandés Canada (USC-STC) has announced the appointment of Declan Sweeney to the role of Interim Executive Director (ED), effective immediately. The organization also takes this opportunity to announce a Canada-wide executive search for a permanent ED. Declan brings more than two decades of highly relevant experience in the Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Industry. He’s held senior roles in Management, R&D, Business Development, Project Management & Event Planning and has served as a Director in both For-profit and Not- for-Profit organizations in Canada. Declan has previously served on the board of Directors of UVSCanada and Unmanned Systems Canada/Systèmes Télécommandés Canada and helped to drive UAS regulations development in Canada as part of CARAC’s UAV Systems Program Design Working Group. (Source: UAS VISION)
ExFor+ CIC is a relatively new organisation but has been established with the objective of becoming a National overarching organisation within the Veterans Support Sector. Our aim is to bring about, positive Social and Economic change for the country as well as a significant
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