Sponsored by Arnold Defense www.arnolddefense.com
17 Jan 20. Streamlight® Inc., a leading provider of high-performance lighting and weapon light/laser sighting devices, introduced the TLR-8® A and the TLR-8® A G, featuring red or green aiming lasers, and offering ergonomic rear switch options with either a low or high position to match users’ shooting style. Both lights deliver 500 lumens and feature a rail clamp that attaches and detaches easily from the side of a broad array of compact and full frame weapons.
“These compact, lightweight weapon lights are designed to maximize visibility and targeting capability in a variety of law enforcement, concealed carry, and home defense applications,” said Streamlight President and Chief Executive Officer Ray Sharrah. “They each feature ambidextrous on/off rear switches with low and high positions to suit user preference. And each comes equipped with an integrated color aiming laser to enable users to readily identify a potential threat before taking any action.”
The TLR-8 A and TLR-8 A G feature a power LED that delivers 5,000 candela and 500 lumens over a beam distance of 140 meters. The TLR-8 A offers a 640-660nm red laser to maximize visibility and long-range targeting capability, while the TLR-8 A G features a 510-520nm “Eye Safe” green laser to improve users’ ability to focus on targets during daylight hours. Both lights can be deployed in Laser-Only mode to keep the gun on target, in LED-Only mode to provide bright, focused light, or in dual mode, which uses both light sources.
The run time for both lights is 1.5 hours in LED-Only, LED and Laser, and strobe modes. In Laser-Only mode, the TLR-8 A provides a run time of 60 hours, while the TLR-8 A G delivers 11 hours. Each light is energized by a single 3 Volt CR2 lithium battery.
Securely fitting to a broad range of weapons, the new TLR lights feature a one-handed, snap on and tighten interface that keeps hands away from gun muzzles when attaching or detaching them. The lights also include a Safe Off feature, locking them so they cannot be turned on accidentally. A key kit is included to securely fit each light to the broadest array of hand guns of any light on the market.
Constructed with 6000 Series machined aircraft aluminum with a black anodized finish, the TLR-8 A and TLR-8 A G both weigh 2.64 ounces and measure 2.58 inches in length.
With extensively live-fire tested, impact-resistant construction, the new models feature an IPX7-rated design, making them waterproof to 1 meter for 30 minutes.
The lights are packaged as the TLR-8 A FLEX and TLR-8 A G FLEX. Each comes with a High switch mounted on the light, plus an included Low switch. The TLR-8 A FLEX has an MSRP of $367.50, while the TLR-8 A G FLEX has an MSRP of $450.00. Both lights include Streamlight’s Limited Lifetime Warranty.
17 Jan 20. Turkey tests air-to-air missiles. Turkey’s Gokdogan (Peregrine) beyond-visual-range air-to-air missile has been test-fired for the first time, the Defence Industries Research and Development Institute (SAGE) of the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TÜBİTAK) tweeted with a video on 10 January. The missile was fired from an F-16 wing on the ground, hitting its aerial target. It is scheduled to enter service with the Turkish Air Force Command in 2021, replacing the US-built Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM). (Source: Jane’s)
16 Jan 20. Welcome to the Red Dot Revolution: SIG SAUER Introduces the P320 RXP Series for Red Dot Accuracy Right Out-Of-The-Box. SIG SAUER, Inc. is pleased to introduce red dot accuracy right out-of-the box with the P320 RXP Series pistols. The P320 Full-Size, Compact, XFULL, and XCOMPACT RXP pistols combine the latest advancements in reflex optics with a factory installed ROMEO1PRO Reflex Optic from SIG SAUER Electro-Optics with the award-winning P320 pistol.
17 Jan 20. The NP Aerospace lightweight ballistic helmets range has passed NIJ 0106.01 testing Level II against 9mm,.357 and Level IIIA 44 Mag ammunition rounds. The AC915 high cut and AC914 full cut ballistic helmets are ultra-lightweight, delivering class leading ballistic, fragmentation and blunt trauma protection. The helmet range has also been extensively tested for impact, back face deformation and compression within NP Aerospace’s ballistic labs. NP Aerospace ballistic helmets are fielded with multiple NATO militaries and are currently being delivered to Canada’s Department of National Defence (DND) for their national helmet program.
James Kempston, CEO, NP Aerospace, comments: “Since our first production of ballistic helmets in 1979, NP Aerospace has manufactured and delivered over 1 million units to the British and Canadian Armed Forces, amongst many other global customers. We take great pride in being an armor technology market leader and providing life-saving products. Successfully passing NIJ testing on our current helmets range aligns with our support of US and global law enforcement customers looking for NIJ compliant products.”
17 Jan 20. Russia starts production of S-400 defence missile systems. Russia has started the production of S-400 long-range surface-to-air defence missile systems, with plans to deliver them to India by 2025.
Russian deputy chief of mission Roman Babushkin said that the initial batch of the missile systems will be delivered by October this year, with the remaining batches expected to join the Indian Air Force (IAF) by 2023.
In May 2018, India and Russia completed negotiations for the procurement of S-400 Triumf air defence missile systems to be deployed with the IAF in a deal valued at approximately Rs400bn ($5.92bn).
The initial agreement was signed between the countries in 2016.
India Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre said that the system can offer air defence coverage to vulnerable areas or points.
Manufactured by Russian state-owned company Almaz-Antey, S-400 is an upgraded version of the S-300 and is capable of engaging and destroying targets such as cruise missiles, stealth aircraft, drones and medium-range ballistic missiles.
Press Trust of India reported that the missile was earlier available only to the Russian Defence Forces and has been in service in the country since 2007.
Recently, members of the Iraqi Parliament announced that the country was considering the purchase of the system.
Lawmakers in the country noted the government’s decision to go ahead with negotiations for the purchase of these missile systems.
According to a Pentagon report titled ‘Iran Military Power’ in November last year, Iran showed interest in purchasing S-400 systems and Bastian coastal defence systems from Russia.
In July last year, Turkey’s Ministry of National Defence took delivery of the first components of S-400 systems in Ankara and later on announced plans in November to start their testing in spite of pressure from the US to stop the programme. (Source: airforce-technology.com)
16 Jan 20. Boeing promotes its Compact Laser Weapon System for US Navy use.
- Boeing is offering its Compact Laser Weapon System to the US Navy
- The weapon comes in both 2 and 5 kW configurations
Boeing is promoting its Compact Laser Weapon System (CLWS) at the 2020 National Surface Navy Association Symposium as an option for the US Navy (USN) to perform counter-unmanned aerial vehicle (C-UAV) missions against the smaller Group 1 and 2 aircraft around ports or other areas.
Ron Dauk, Boeing laser and electro-optical (EO) systems programme manager, told Jane’s on 14 January that the CLWS is uniquely designed to address the very prevalent low, slow, and small UAV threat against quadcopters and equivalent aircraft. The CLWS comes in both 2 and 5 kW configurations and Dauk said Boeing has successfully engaged in both configurations with various customers at multiple field tests.Boeing and several other companies in October participated in a US Air Force (USAF) and US Army Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation (SDPE) and Maneuver and Fires Integrated Experiment (MFIX) demonstration event at Fort Sill in Oklahoma.
Boeing used its 5 kW CLWS to perform several demonstrations of its capabilities. Test operators used handheld, game-style controllers to acquire, track, and disable small UAVs in flight. With the CLWS in a fixed-site configuration on a standard shipping container, the first-time system operators successfully defeated about 30 targets, according to a company statement.
Jane’s had previously reported in August that Boeing would be eligible for an award after participating in the SDPE MFIX event at Fort Sill in October. Mauk said Boeing did not receive an award but believed that no other company did either. Nevertheless, he said he was hopeful that Boeing is still eligible for an award and that he looked forward to hearing from the USAF. The USAF did not return a request for comment prior to publication. (Source: Jane’s)
16 Jan 20. US Marine Corps could soon take out enemy ships with Navy missiles. The U.S. Marine Corps could soon get the Navy’s new Naval Strike Missile for use as a shore battery, according to the Navy’s acquisitions chief.
“Just yesterday [Jan. 14] we had the team in that has the Naval Strike Missile on LCS working hand-in-hand with the Marine Corps. The Marine Corps does ground launchers, we do command and control,” Assistant Secretary of the Navy James “Hondo” Geurts told reporters after his Jan. 15 speech at the annual Surface Navy symposium. “We’ll make that immediately available to the Marine Corps.”
Geurts said the effort on Naval Strike Missile, a Kongsberg/Raytheon product, was emblematic of a more coherent approach where instead of a dedicated Marine Corps effort to examine, test and field a system, the services were leveraging each other to get capabilities out faster.
The missile was recently deployed to the Pacific on the littoral combat ship Gabrielle Giffords, and the weapon is capable of flying more than 100 miles. It can passively detect enemy ships with imagery in its brain and is so precise that it can target individual parts of a ship, like the engine room or bridge.
In May, Raytheon announced it had been awarded $48m through an other transaction authority contract to integrate the Naval Strike Missile into the Marine Corps’ force structure, but very few details were available at the time.
This won’t be the first time the missile is based on land, as Poland’s coastal defense forces already have several batteries in service. And in 2018 at the Rim of the Pacific exercise, the U.S. Army fired a Naval Strike Missile at a decommissioned ship as part of a live-fire demonstration.
It’s unknown what the Marine Corps will use as a launcher, as it is unclear whether or not the service’s M142 High Mobility Artillery Rocket System can be used to fire the Naval Strike Missile. However, it is likely that the Corps’ manned launchers will fire the missiles while on the deck of Navy amphibious ships, as the Corps has been testing the capability with HIMARS launchers. (Source: Defense News)
15 Jan 20. USSOCOM Completes Safety Certification and Purchase of SIG SAUER MG 338 Machine Guns, Ammunition, and Next Generation Suppressors. SIG SAUER, Inc. is pleased to announce the United States Special Operation Command (USSOCOM), working closely with SIG SAUER, has completed a safety certification of the new SIG SAUER MG 338 Machine Guns, SIG SAUER 338 Norma Mag Ammunition, and Next Generation Suppressors. Following this historic official safety certification, SIG SAUER has completed deliveries of multiple systems, comprised of the MG 338 Machine Guns, 338 Norma Mag Ammunition, and Next Generation Suppressors – all researched, designed, engineered, and manufactured by SIG SAUER in the U.S.A.
15 Jan 20. India’s Cabinet Committee on Security approves weapon and sensor package for four destroyers. India’s Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) has approved an INR61.50bn (USD867.5m) weapon and sensor package for four 7,300-tonne guided-missile destroyers that are currently being built for the Indian Navy (IN) by the state-owned Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited (MDL) in Mumbai.
Official sources told Jane’s that the CCS cleared the procurement of the anti-ship variant of the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile in late December 2019, along with the long-range surface-to-air missile (LRSAM) version of the Barak-8 air-defence system for fitment onto the future Visakhapatnam (Project15B)-class destroyers to engage coastal, sea-based, and aerial targets.
IN sources said the four destroyers will be armed with an extended range variant of the BrahMos anti-ship missile, the range of which will exceed 292km. (Source: Jane’s)
15 Jan 20. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) awarded Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) a $31.9m contract for the Operational Fires (OpFires) Phase 3 Weapon System Integration program. OpFires seeks to develop and demonstrate an innovative ground-launched system to enable a hypersonic boost glide missile system to penetrate modern enemy air defenses and rapidly engage time-sensitive targets.
Lockheed Martin, DARPA and the U.S. Army, aims to develop and demonstrate an innovative, ground-launched, mobile, integrated weapon system that leverages DARPA-funded propulsion solutions and hypersonic boost glide technology. The award for Phase 3 of the OpFires program will take the design from the initial requirements development through the Critical Design Review (CDR) in late 2021. Integrated flight testing is scheduled to begin in 2022, with component and subsystem tests expected in 2021.
“The OpFires missile is critical to providing the U.S. Army with a highly maneuverable and rapid response solution capable of operating from unpredictable land-launch positions to suppress hostile threats,” said Hady Mourad, director of Tactical and Strike Missiles Advanced Programs at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. “Lockheed Martin will deliver the prototype missiles utilizing the experienced production teams that currently produce the ATACMS, GMLRS and PAC-3 missile systems in Camden, Arkansas.”
Hypersonic weapons will provide a survivable and affordable capability that will overcome distance in contested environments using high speed, altitude and maneuverability. They amplify many of the enduring attributes of airpower – speed, range, flexibility and precision.
Lockheed Martin has played a significant role in the research, development and demonstration of hypersonic technologies for more than 30 years. The corporation has made significant investments in key technology and capability development – including hypersonic strike capabilities and defense systems against emerging hypersonic threats and is supporting all branches of the U.S. military on these hypersonic programs.
15 Jan 20. Royal Navy to begin unmanned minehunting operations. The UK Royal Navy will begin minehunting and survey operations using unmanned surface vessels (USVs) in March 2020.
The navy will deploy a mix of unmanned and remotely-operated USVs and submersibles designed to detect ‘smart mines’ and conduct survey missions of the ocean and seafloor from HMNB Clyde.
The active service follows a £13m contract award to Atlas Elektronik UK, the culmination of years of work and ongoing trials from the Royal Navy, Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) and Defence Science Technology Laboratory (Dstl).
Initial operation of the vessel will be carried out under the Royal Navy’s Project Wilton which aims to develop and deliver the navy’s unmanned minehunting and survey programmes. Wilton has three vessels under its control; two remote-controlled and one manned boat alongside several submersible vehicles.
Maritime capability assistant chief of staff Commodore Mike Knott said: “With equipment and personnel now operating on the Clyde, the transition to widespread use of autonomous systems in mine countermeasures (MCM) is becoming a reality and places the Royal Navy MCM community at the cutting edge.”
The unmanned systems are set to supplement and support the Royal Navy’s existing manned minehunting force provided by Hunt- and Sandown-class minehunter vessels.
Knott added: “This exciting project handover is a real step forward in realising our ambition to make minehunting safer and more effective through the use of autonomous and robotic technology.”
Capabilities include Atlas Elektronik’s ARCIMS vehicle designed for minesweeping, minehunting, mine disposal, anti-submarine warfare, surveillance, force protection and diver support using several different mission module options. ARCIMS first gained notice as part of Exercise Unmanned Warrior in 2016, where 50 participants demonstrated the capabilities of unmanned systems to the Royal Navy.
Wilton is seen by the Royal Navy as a stepping stone between current and future mine countermeasures (MCM) technology, with the ultimate goal of delivering and developing a fully autonomous MCM system for the UK which would be able to be deployed from many vessels including the existing surface fleet.
The systems are designed to be transportable via low-loaders, meaning they can be quickly deployed into theatre wherever they are needed.
For the time being the vessels will be based in the UK where they will survey and patrol British waters while providing data on their use that the Royal Navy can learn from for future deployments. At the moment the vessels will be used for route survey with mine disposal capabilities being further developed.
Project Wilton is named after the HMS Wilton, an experimental coastal minesweeper launched in 1972 that was the first warship in the world to use a glass-reinforced plastic hull and laid the groundwork for the Hunt-class MCM vessels. At the time, HMS Wilton was seen to fulfil a similar role in stepping up MCM capabilities as Project Wilton is today.
Autonomy in naval forces is being largely developed with to take on the 3Ds’ of dull, dirty and dangerous missions, in order to keep sailors out of harm’s way. (Source: naval-technology.com)
13 Jan 20. The US Wants to Intimidate China with Hypersonics, Once It Solves the Physics. The U.S. is pressing ahead with new missiles, but questions remain about engineering, tactics, and even geopolitics.
A set of small, uninhabited Pacific islands, very close to China, may be the destination of some of America’s most sophisticated and controversial future weapons: hypersonic missiles that remain nimble even at five times the speed of sound. On Friday, U.S. Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said the still-in-development weapons would likely change the future of war.
The Army — along with the Air Force, Navy, and Missile Defense Agency — has been advancing work on a variety of hypersonic capabilities. The Army expects to begin testing aspects of its Long-Range Hypersonic Weapon this year, with full flight testing expected in 2023.
Speaking at a Brookings Institution event, McCarthy said hypersonics would be key to a new kind of multi-domain task force that he was rolling out. These highly mobile units will be deployed to attack enemies at long ranges with electronic warfare, cyber attacks, and long-range munitions such as hypersonic missiles. He said the new units could be deployed to the Senkaku or Ryukyu island chains.
“You could put it down somewhere in the South China Sea” to help nullify Chinese anti-access/area denial capabilities: defenses to keep U.S. forces out of specific areas, he said.
“Hypersonics are the Pershing missile of the 21st century,” he said, referring to ground-based nuclear weapons deployed to Europe during the Cold War. “Because of the extraordinary speed and lethality of that capability, the dilemma is that if you don’t have essentially, a type of, almost artificial intelligence-like capabilities…you can’t find it, sense it, or shoot it. Because it will be there in a couple minutes.”
The Pershings came “to be seen as a hair trigger for nuclear war because of their short flight times — as little as 10 minutes,” the New York Times wrote last year. The missiles were a primary reason that Soviet leaders developed the “dead hand” system to automatically launch ICBMs at the United States.
The Army’s new concept drew skepticism from Tom Karako, senior fellow with the International Security Program and the director of the Missile Defense Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
“The Army could put high-value, mobile hypersonic strike assets on a small place like the Senkakus, but why would you want to? If you just want to create a presence that the Chinese would be loathe to dislodge, less costly and scarce forces and fires might do just as well. If it is ‘provide a survivable base for these exquisite assets,’ some other place might be better. Maybe the joint force will one day have so many hypersonic rounds that they could be deployed everywhere, but in the near term I expect they’ll be deployed somewhere where they could be mobile and camouflaged,” Karako wrote in an email.
The Hypersonics Race
The Army is hardly alone in its rush to develop hypersonics. Delivering a conventional payload far more quickly is among the Pentagon’s top research priorities. China and Russia are ahead in some respects, though they have given themselves the easier initial task of developing missiles accurate enough to deliver nuclear weapons. A September 2019 Congressional Research Service report declared that both are “expected to field an operational hypersonic glide vehicle— potentially armed with nuclear warheads—as early as 2020.” Indeed, Russia claimed at the end of the year to have deployed some.
Meanwhile, American work is proceeding on a wider variety of hypersonic efforts. Last year, Lockheed Martin and the Air Force fired an AGM-183A Air-Launched Rapid Response Weapon, or ARRW, from a B-52 bomber. More tests are expected this year, moving toward the expected program completion date of 2022.
This year, the Air Force also expects to complete a critical design review of its Hypersonic Conventional Strike Weapon. The service and DARPA will continue testing the Tactical Boost Glide missile and Hypersonic Air-breathing Weapon Concept, or HAWC. And DARPA and the Missile Defense Agency expect to test aspects of a weapon that could intercept incoming hypersonic missiles.
This multi-faceted approach sets the U.S. hypersonic effort apart from its competitors. “Hypersonics is more than a single weapon or a single system. It’s a suite of capabilities, smaller scale, medium range, longer range,” said Mark Lewis, the Pentagon’s director of defense research and engineering for modernization. “Parts of the Department of Defense fund universities have very active programs on the fundamental science level all the way up to the applied programs.”
Hyperspeed, Hyper Hard
But hypersonics are, in a word, hard. Compared to an ICBM, which spends much of its flight in the relatively uncomplicated vacuum of space, air-breathing hypersonic missiles will remain among the drag and turbulence of the atmosphere.
“If I’m going to fly in the atmosphere as a hypersonic vehicle, which is one of the big characteristics of these vehicles, I have to have a relatively low drag shape, right?” Lewis said. “I can’t have a lot of resistance to my motion to the atmosphere. At these speeds what that means is, I have to have sharp leading edges. I have to be able to slice through the atmosphere very effectively. The problem is that the sharp leading edge also gets very hot. So, a good rule of thumb is the heating to a leading edge of a vehicle at hypersonic speed scales inversely with the square root of the radius of curvature, right? So, what that means is when you get sharp, you get hot…So, I’ve got a trade-off right there. How sharp is the leading edge, or how blunt is it?”
Design choices lead to other tradeoffs, said Lewis. What materials can handle hypersonic heat loads without warping? There’s also the challenge of steering. A conventional jet has flaps to change the aerodynamic forces over the vehicle. But flaps on a missile create drag, limiting range, so one big challenge is coming up with ways to steer without damaging performance, said Lewis.
“Then, there are some big unknowns that we just don’t understand in this realm, right? One of the key unknowns is the state of the flow over the vehicle,” he said. “When you look at the flow moving over the surface of any aircraft, you can characterize it in one of three categories. You can either say it’s nice and smooth and laminar. You can say it’s turbulent, it’s got eddies and swirls. Or you can say it’s transitioning between those two states. The condition of that flow is very important in determining how much drag the vehicle has and how hot it gets, right? So, swirling turbulent flow tends to make the surface much hotter than the smooth laminar flow. We don’t have a basic understanding, a basic characterization, of when the airflow goes from nice and smooth laminar to chaotic and turbulent at hypersonic speeds.”
Lewis says he is a fan of supersonic combustion ramcraft, or scramjet engines. But, he says, there’s still a lot of technology to be developed. “We built them, we have flown them. We know they work, but improving their design, manufacturing them, making sure that we can produce them in the numbers that we would need for a credible weapons arsenal are among the research projects that we’re investing in.”
While the United States has some catching up to do, Lewis says that the Defense Department is finally in place where it’s serious about developing new hypersonic capabilities. “It has clearly risen to the top of the attention of our leadership…Everyone in this building with a hand in setting our [science and technology] priorities understands the importance of hypersonics.” (Source: Defense One)
14 Jan 20. Northrop Grumman Corporation’s (NYSE: NOC) Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM) system for the U.S. Army has successfully completed free flight missile testing at White Sands Missile Range.
“CIRCM has undergone thousands of hours of testing to verify its performance in a range of realistic combat scenarios,” said Bob Gough, vice president, land and avionics C4ISR, Northrop Grumman. “During the recent testing at White Sands Missile Range, our system once again demonstrated superior capability in countering infrared threats. We look forward to providing the U.S. Army with this unparalleled protection.”
As part of this test, the CIRCM system was presented with engagements in both single and multiple shot scenarios while mounted to an aircraft that hangs from an aerial cable. The successful completion of this testing is a significant milestone on the path to full rate production, indicating that CIRCM is ready to help protect the U.S. Army aircraft from infrared threats.
CIRCM is a lightweight countermeasure system that uses laser energy to defend rotary wing, tilt rotor and small fixed wing aircraft against infrared threats. Its modular, open systems architecture allows it to be integrated with systems and sensors to address current and emerging threats.
13 Jan 20. Israel tests advanced Iron Dome. The Israel Ministry of Defense (IMOD) announced on 12 January that a series of trials of an improved Iron Dome air defence system had been completed successfully.
The live-fire interception tests were led by Rafael, the system’s manufacturer, and conducted at a test range in southern Israel, the IMOD stated. It released video footage of multiple Iron Dome launches and interceptions filmed with an infrared camera.
“The tests demonstrated the capabilities of an advanced version of the Iron Dome system in a variety of scenarios that simulated the future threats that the system may confront,” the IMOD said without explaining how the system has been improved or describing the future threats. (Source: Jane’s)
13 Jan 20. Russia orders first batch of Udav pistols. The Russian Ministry of Defence announced on its website on 9 January that it will receive its first batch of 50 Udav (boa constrictor) pistols in 2020 under the State Defence Order. The ministry reported that the pistol had completed initial trials, which began in 2019, in various conditions, including temperatures ranging from -50 to 70°C, adding that this made it suitable for use by all military branches. The Udav is designed for 9×21 mm ammunition ranging from tracers to cartridges capable of penetrating body armour and combat helmets. The pistol has a 50m sighting range. (Source: Jane’s)
13 Jan 20. Lebanon’s Air Force to arm newly refurbished AB 212 helicopters. The Lebanese Air Force has refurbished an Agusta-Bell AB 212 helicopter as part of a proof of concept, and will now begin a five-year project to revive the fleet with five operational helicopters.
“The twin engine choppers have been out of service since 1990. We are bringing them back to service to perform [multiple] tasks, from military missions to firefighting missions and search and rescue,” Brig. Gen. Ziad Haykal, the commander of the Air Force, told Defense News.
Due to the similarity between the AB 212 and the Huey II, which is currently operational with the fleet, the Air Force can use spare parts and technical expertise gained from the latter helicopter for local refurbishment, the general added.
Indeed, local refurbishment will reduce the cost of the project by 60 percent because the service is not sending the helicopters back to the manufacturer.
“The expected operational life span of the helicopters is 20 years, and it is worth noting that we obtained technical references for the project from Leonardo company, the manufacturer of this type of choppers,” Haykal said. “We are anticipating to operate these twin-engined helicopters in the missions to help secure oil and gas installations above Lebanese waters, particularly security preservation of the exclusive economic zone, by air or by sea.”
The five helicopters are expected to be equipped with 70mm Hydra rockets, .50-caliber machine guns and 250-kilogram bombs, much like the Huey II during missions at the Nahr el-Bared refugee camp in 2007, a Lebanese official told Defense News on a condition of anonymity. Fatah al-Islam militant launched at attack on the Lebanese Army from the Palestinian refugee camp in North Lebanon in May 2007. The Army struck back with modified Huey helicopters that were able to deploy 250-kilogram bombs.
The Hydra rockets and their integration on the helos are part of American military aid to Lebanon, the official said. (Source: Defense News)
13 Jan 20. In a recent series of tests in the Negev Desert in southern Israel, RAFAEL demonstrated the SPIKE SR (Short Range) Precision guided missile, proving its unique lethal capability. SPIKE SR is an electro-optical guided missile designed for shoulder launch by infantry. It is the smallest and lightest variant of the SPIKE Missile family, weighing only 10kg, in use today by several nations, including within NATO.
The entire SPIKE Family is now operational in 34 nations, with more than 33,000 rounds produced and supplied, and as many as 45 different platforms integrated, including attack helicopters, ground vehicles, marine vessels and more.
SPIKE SR was designed for the maneuvering forces, allowing standoff engagement ranges of 2000 meters, formerly covered only by heavier ATGM‘s. Designed as a portable, fully disposable munition the SPIKE SR carries a powerful High Explosive Anti-Tank (HEAT) warhead, joined with a frontal precursor for clearing of ERA (Explosive Reactive Armor) tiles
During the demonstration, operators hit targets located 2000 meters away, presenting both a great standoff range to enhance the survivability of maneuvering infantry, as well as lethality, with impressive armor penetration results.
Mr. Gal Papier, director of marketing and business development at Rafael’s Precision Tactical Weapon Systems directorate: “We are very proud of this small missile, which proved to be as lethal as other large caliber missiles, with great agility for the warfighter due to its light weight, as well as its ability to act rapidly within six seconds from cold start, engaging fast moving targets, highly-demanded capabilities in today’s warfare”.
Arnold Defense has manufactured more than 1.25 million 2.75-inch rocket launchers since 1961 for the U.S. Army, U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force and many NATO customers. They are the world’s largest supplier of rocket launchers for military aircraft, vessels and vehicles. Core products include the 7-round M260 and 19-round M261 commonly used by helicopters; the thermal coated 7-round LAU-68 variants and LAU-61 Digital Rocket Launcher used by the U.S. Navy and Marines; and the 7-round LAU-131 and SUU-25 flare dispenser used by the U.S. Air Force and worldwide.
Today’s rocket launchers now include the ultra-light LWL-12 that weighs just over 60 pounds (27 kg.) empty and the new Fletcher (4) round launcher. Arnold Defense designs and manufactures various rocket launchers that can be customized for any capacity or form factor for platforms in the air, on the ground or even at sea.
Arnold Defense maintains the highest standards of production quality by using extensive testing, calibration and inspection processes.