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22 Apr 15. Sagem looks to arm French C-130s with AASM. Sagem is preparing to offer an armed upgrade package for the French Air Force’s Lockheed Martin C-130 Hercules transport aircraft, company officials told IHS Jane’s. The upgrade would include arming the Hercules with the SSA-1101 Gerfaut system, allowing the C-130 to carry and deploy as many as eight Sagem AASM (Armement Air-Sol Modulaire) precision guided munitions (PGMs). The SSA-1101 Gerfaut has been under development since 2012 by Sagem, Rafaut, and AA/ROK.
“We can guarantee a range of 30 km for an AASM dropped at 25,000 ft and 190 kt,” a Sagem official told IHS Jane’s. The company will soon make an unsolicited bid to the French defence procurement agency, the DGA, outlining its armed-Hercules proposal.
Computer simulations conducted in 2014 confirmed the aerodynamic loading and the possibility to drop 250 kg bombs from the cargo aircraft, Sagem said. Four PGMs could be carried under each wing in place of the external fuel tank. The aircraft would use the Rafaut AUF-2 adaptor – already used on the Mirage 2000Ds – allowing two bombs to be carried. A 5.8 m support structure, which has yet to be developed by Rafaut, would provide the interface between both AUF-2 and the C-130 wing pylon. Rafaut plans to integrate all the electronics necessary to fire the AASM and even a Rover trans-receiver in this support. Meanwhile, Sagem has already developed the necessary hardware for the Moroccan Mirage F1 modernisation package, which included AASM capabilities. “Using them on the C-130 wouldn’t be a problem,” said the Sagem official. The SSA-1101’s mission system interface would be fitted in the cargo hold or in the cockpit of the C-130, with a direct link to the AUF-2 adaptor and the AASMs. This mission system would be totally independent from the C-130 own avionics, meaning integration work would be reduced to the minimum and the aircraft would retain its cargo capacity. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
21 Apr 15. A current and qualified Forward Air Controller (FAC) from the United Kingdom, using the Rockwell Collins FireStorm Integrated Targeting System, was the first to successfully guide an F-35 Lightning II aircraft digitally using a complete air strike mission thread in both a ground test and live flight. The flight test was conducted at Edwards Air Force Base, California, F-35 Lightning II flight test facility in coordination with the integrated project team from the U.K. F-35 Office.
“The FAC approached the test from a practical standpoint and was able to use the system under simulated tactical conditions,” said Tommy Dodson, vice president and general manager of Surface Solutions for Rockwell Collins. “The test was also significant because FireStorm is currently fielded by the British Army, and has now been proven to be interoperable with the F-35.”
The Rockwell Collins FireStorm Integrated Targeting System is a lightweight and modular Joint Fires system that provides proven digital connectivity with virtually all coalition aircraft, field artillery systems and command-and-control center battle managers. FireStorm systems are in operation around the world, and in use by five NATO countries.
20 Apr 15. Iran’s Bavar 373 ‘not operational.’ Brigadier General Mohammad Mahmoudi, a senior Iranian military officer, has said that the long-range air defence system that is being indigenously developed is not operational yet, contrary to what some Iranian news outlets reported. The new missile that was displayed in the 18 April parade appears to be called the Sayyad-3 and has been developed for the Bavar-373 air defence system. The Mehr news agency on 18 April cited him as saying that the Bavar 373 and Sayyad-3 missile unveiled that day during a military parade in Tehran had become fully operational. However, a day later the Iranian