02 Sep 14. Colt Canada to build new Canadian Ranger rifles. The Canadian government on 2 September moved closer to replacing the decades-old .303 Lee Enfield No 4 Mk 1 rifles used by the army’s Canadian Rangers, a reserve force responsible for patrolling near the Arctic Circle. A Request for Proposals (RfP) was issued by Colt Canada “to solicit a new Canadian Ranger Rifle design” that ultimately is to result in two contracts awarded to Colt Canada for developing, testing, and building the new rifles, according to a Canadian Department of National Defence (DND) statement. Canadian Rangers are issued few pieces of kit and mostly equip themselves for remote patrols. They are given the reliable bolt-action Lee Enfield rifles for defence against predator animals and as a survival hunting tool. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
02 Sep 14. Estonia donates small-arms ammo to Iraqi Kurds. The Estonian government has donated over one million rounds of small-arms ammunition to the Kurdish fighters fighting the Islamic State militant group in northern Iraq, it announced on 29 August. Based on EU foreign affairs guidelines of 15 August, the decision was announced by both the defence and foreign ministries. The 7.62 mm x 39 ammunition for AK-type assault rifles was acquired in the 1990s before the Estonian military converted to NATO standards. Weighing around 30 tonnes, the consignment will be delivered to Iraq by coalition transport aircraft. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
31 Aug 14. AmSafe Bridport announces the signing of a cooperation agreement with Polish defence company UMO, to work together to launch AmSafe Bridport’s Tarian® rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) armour system into the Polish defence and security market. AmSafe Bridport’s experience in developing Tarian, a revolutionary, lightweight and flexible RPG vehicle armour system, combined with UMO’s track record in establishing advanced, specialised military hardware products into Poland’s Special Operations Command and Police units, means that this agreement will offer UMO’s customers the latest in RPG protection technology for defence and security vehicles, both within Poland and on international peace-keeping missions. Tarian is a highly effective solution for protection against RPGs and also the world’s lightest. Developed in close collaboration with the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD), the Tarian system has been extensively tested – including over 750 live shots – in the UK, France and the USA. This testing verified Tarian’s high level of performance and multi-hit capability. Tarian was launched in 2009 and it is now fitted to a variety of British military vehicles, including those in service in Afghanistan, following a £10.6M order from the MOD in 2012.
28 Aug 14. Raytheon Company and the U.S. Army achieved the first intercept of a cruise missile by the Accelerated Improved Intercept Initiative missile. An AI3 missile also destroyed an unmanned aerial system (UAS). Both intercepts occurred during the recent Black Dart demonstration – a U.S. military exercise held July 29 – August 11. Fired from the Avenger launcher, AI3 missiles intercepted both targets at low altitude over water and in a high-clutter marine environment – capabilities made possible by upgrades to the missile’s semi-active seeker and radar. The ability to defeat UAS and cruise missile threats is the key requirement of the U.S. Army’s Indirect Fire Protection Capability (IFPC) Block 1. IFPC is a mobile, ground-based weapon system designed to acquire, track, engage and defeat UAS, cruise missiles, rockets, artillery and mortars.
“Raytheon’s AI3 missile is breaking new ground with its destruction of these challenging targets that are real threats to today’s warfighter,” said Dr. Thomas R. Bussing, Raytheon Advanced Missile Systems vice president. “We’ve developed a missile that integrates easily into the Army’s existing systems. It’s affordable, the risk is low and we can get it in the field soon.”
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