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08 Jul 21. UK Mobile Fires, Wheels Vs. Tracks or Wheels and Tracks? The various contenders for the upcoming £800m UK Mobile Fires Requirement for 116 guns are laying out their stalls to bid MFP the with the Outline Business Case (OBC) to be presented in 2022 and the Full Business Case (FBC) in 2024-5, a debate has started over whether the guns should be wheeled, which would favour such bidders as BAE Systems with Archer, Nexter with Caesar, Elbit with ATMOS and RBSL with Boxer RCH 155 or tracked which would favour Hanwha with K9 Thunder. Another option is to upgrade AS90 with a new turret, Extended range 52 calibre barrel and ammunition and new running gear. BATTLESPACE understands that RBSL has already conducted a study on this option which is believed to have found favour in some areas of the MoD. The British Army has 179 AS90s so there are surplus vehicles which could be knocked down for spares. A new debate has emerged whereby a split bid of wheeled systems for such areas as North African with tracks being used for Northern European Operations. The most likely winner for wheels would be Boxer RCH 155 as it would enable continuity with the existing Boxer fleet. So, could the option be to have a split fleet of Boxer RCH 155 with a refurbished AS90 with the unmanned Hanwha turret and support resupply vehicle? That would bring key South Korean unmanned artillery expertise into the British Army inventory and the ability to join the K9 Club of nations which includes Norway, Australia, Estonia, Turkey, India, Finland and South Korea, with RBSL having overall control over the project. Could an RBSL Hanwha team be the way forward?
08 Jul 21. IRGC Ground Forces receive new weapons. Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) announced on 7 July that its ground forces have received a range of new, advanced weapons that included tactical ballistic missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and anti-tank missiles.
The photographs and videos of the handover event showed the weapons included at least three mobile launchers for Fateh-110-series tactical ballistic missiles that were disguised as shipping containers, each with two launch rails. A similar launcher was displayed in 2020 but loaded with a Nazeat heavy rocket rather than missiles. Iranian launchers are normally disguised with removable canopies.
There were also at least two launchers that each carried six large missiles in sealed canisters that appeared to be the same as the ones seen at an underground base that the IRGC publicised in March.
The IRGC has previously unveiled Fateh-110s that can be launched from buried canisters but the ones on the new launchers are clearly too short for these missiles and their diameter too small when the fins are taken into consideration.
There has been speculation that the canisters are for a scaled-down version of the Fateh-110 that was displayed by the IRGC in August 2020 and labelled as the Fteh. (Source: Jane’s)
07 Jul 21. Israeli firm, Lockheed Martin ink air defence deal. The state-run Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) and US security and aerospace giant Lockheed Martin have signed an agreement for collaboration in integrated air and missile defence (IAMD) systems.
Under this collaboration, the companies will explore potential joint opportunities in areas such as R&D, production, marketing and other activities, Xinhua news agency quoted the IAI as saying in a statement on Tuesday.
Both companies will establish an executive steering committee and working groups for the implementation of the agreement and cooperation.
“Our long-standing relationship with Israel and its defence industries opens new opportunities for us, aimed to expand our businesses around the world,” said Tim Cahill, Lockheed Martin’s senior vice president.
“Combining the development capabilities and the vast know-how of Lockheed Martin and IAI experience accumulated over the years in IAMD systems will create win-win opportunities for both sides,” said Boaz Levy, IAI’s president and CEO. (Source: Google/https://www.sify.com/)
05 Jul 21. Singapore Army showcases new self-propelled 120 mm mortar system. The Singapore Army has commissioned a new all-terrain self-propelled mortar system based on its in-service 4×4 Belrex Protected Combat Support Vehicle (PCSV), designated Belrex PCSV (Mortar), on 28 June.
The new vehicle – which is jointly developed by the army, the Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA), and the Land Systems business of local defence prime ST Engineering – is crewed by three personnel and will replace the 120 mm towed mortar currently used by the service’s motorised forces.
The vehicle is protected against small arms fire and mine blasts, and is fitted with the ST Engineering Land Systems Super Rapid Advanced Mortar System Mk II (SRAMS Mk II), which is armed with a 120 mm smoothbore mortar mounted in an armoured rear cabin.
The automated SRAMS Mk II is provided with an integrated fire control system (FCS) and can deploy in approximately 30 seconds – 80% faster than the towed mortar – to execute fire missions at a sustained rate of fire of four rds/min for 20 minutes, or at maximum rate of 10 rds/min for three minutes. This also represents a 67% increase in rate of fire compared to the towed mortar, as well as a 50% decrease in manpower requirements.
Belrex – a portmanteau of Bellum (war) and Rex (king) – is a family of 20-tonne 4×4 PCSVs that was commissioned on 25 November 2016. The baseline vehicle is intended to provide the army’s combat support and combat service support (CSS) units with improved protected, firepower, and situational awareness over the soft-skinned trucks that are typically used for logistics operations. (Source: Jane’s)
05 Jul 21. South Korea conducts SLBM test from underwater barge. South Korea has for the first time tested a locally developed submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) from an underwater barge as the Republic of Korea Navy (RoKN) prepares to induct its first SLBM-capable Dosan An Chang-ho (KSS-III)-class submarine in the near future, according to local news channel YTN.
Few details were provided about the trial, but the Yonhap News Agency quoted unnamed analysts as saying that it appears to have been an underwater ejection test of the missile from the launch tube. The tested weapon is believed to be based on South Korea’s 500 km-range Hyeonmu-2B (also spelled Hyunmoo-2B) ballistic missile.
The underwater test comes after Yonhap quoted an unnamed military source in January as saying that ejection tests of the missile conducted on land – presumably at the Agency for Defense Development’s (ADD’s) Anheung test site in Taean County – had been completed in 2020, adding that underwater test launches would follow in 2021.
The missiles, which are to be fitted with conventional warheads, are expected to be deployed with 3,000 tonne-class or larger submarines such as the KSS-III (also spelled KSS-3) boats. At the International Maritime Defense Industry Exhibition (MADEX) 2019 in Busan, South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) displayed a model of the KSS III class, confirming that these indigenously developed attack submarines have been designed with a capability to launch SLBMs.
According to YTN, first-of-class Dosan An Chang-ho (SS 083), which is equipped with an air-independent propulsion (AIP) system, could be handed over to the RoKN later this month following the successful completion of tests of the boat’s torpedo decoy system and vertical launch system (VLS). (Source: Jane’s)
06 Jul 21. MBDA’s CAMM to strengthen Air Defence capability of Royal Navy Type 45 destroyers. MBDA has been awarded a number of contracts to significantly upgrade the air and missile defence capabilities of the Royal Navy’s six Type 45 destroyers. The work will see CAMM (Common Anti-air Modular Missile) paired with an upgraded Sea Viper command and control (C2) system for the first time. CAMM offers both world-leading close-in and local-area air defence, and will complement Aster 30, strengthening the anti-air defence capability of the Royal Navy.
Fitting CAMM onto the Type 45s will give the destroyers a 50% increase in the number of its air defence missiles. Installation will be via 24 additional launcher cells, and the Sea Viper C2 will get a technology upgrade, giving it a major increase in processing power.
The existing 48 Sylver cells on the Type 45 will now be solely for the longer-range Aster 30 missile, which is also subject to a recently announced mid-life refresh. This will see the missile remain in service throughout the life of the Type 45s. CAMM has already been delivered to both the British Army and the Royal Navy, where it is the interceptor in both ground-based air defence (GBAD) and naval-based air defence (NBAD) systems, enabling these services to equip missiles from a shared stockpile.
In service on upgraded Royal Navy Type 23 frigates, CAMM will also be fitted to Type 26 and Type 31 in the future. The CAMM family has proven a rapid success with international customers, with Canada and Brazil among the new users ordering the missile this year.
06 Jul 21. £500m firepower upgrade for Type 45 destroyers. The Royal Navy’s Type 45 destroyers will receive a £500m upgrade to enhance their firepower capability.
Supporting over 100 highly-skilled jobs in Bristol, Stevenage, Gosport and Bolton, the two contracts will develop the cutting-edge air defence systems of the Type 45 destroyers.
MBDA UK has been awarded an 11-year contract to integrate the Common Anti-Air Modular Missile (CAMM) programme, often referred to as Sea Ceptor, into the Type 45 destroyers’ Sea Viper weapon systems. In addition to this, a 10-year contract with Eurosam will provide a refresh of the Aster 30 missiles system that are currently in use.
Minister for Defence Procurement, Jeremy Quin said, “Enhancing our destroyer capabilities, this investment reaffirms our commitment to equip the Royal Navy with the most advanced and powerful defensive systems. This upgrade ensures the Type 45 remains hugely respected by naval fleets across the globe and secures highly-skilled jobs and investment.”
Announced by the Prime Minister last November, Defence has received an increase in funding of over £24bn across the next four years, focussing on the ability to adapt to meet future threats. Outlined further in the Defence Command Paper, this investment to upgrade the Type 45 destroyers will boost the lethality of the surface fleet. Currently, the Type 45 destroyers use a combination of short-range Aster 15 and long-range Aster 30 anti-air missiles to engage and destroy enemy threats. To facilitate the introduction of CAMM, a new 24-missile CAMM silo will be added in front of the current 48-missile Aster 30 silos, therefore increasing the overall missile capacity of the vessels by 50 per cent. This will result in a total capacity of 72 anti-air missiles per destroyer.
Royal Navy Fleet Commander, Vice Admiral Jerry Kyd CBE said:
These programmes will provide an exceptional capability to the front line, ensuring the RN remains poised to defend the surface fleet, and most importantly the Carrier Strike Group, against complex air threats both now and into the future.
CAMM also provides a means to accurately and effectively engage small, fast inshore attack craft, hovering helicopters and low-speed targets alongside defeating their more traditional high-speed air targets.
The Aster 30 missile system refresh is a tri-national sustainment and enhancement contract between the UK, France and Italy which includes investment in a dedicated UK embodiment facility at Defence Munitions in Gosport, Hampshire.
DE&S CEO Sir Simon Bollom said, “The introduction of the UK produced CAMM missile in conjunction with the current Aster 30 missile will provide the Type 45 with a significant uplift in anti-air capability into the future as the Type 45 delivers the backbone of air defence to the Royal Navy’s Carrier Strike Group.”
The Royal Navy’s Type 45 destroyers are among the most advanced in the fleet and carry out a range of activity, including defence from air attack, counter-piracy operations and providing humanitarian aid.
The first Type 45 destroyer is expected to have been overhauled by summer 2026. (Source: https://www.gov.uk/)
01 Jul 21. Raytheon gets $2bn U.S. Air Force contract for nuclear cruise missile. Raytheon Technologies Corp (RTX.N) has been awarded an about $2bn contract by the U.S. Air Force to develop and make a nuclear-armed cruise missile, the U.S. aerospace maker said on Thursday.
The long-range standoff weapon (LRSO) will be manufactured in Tucson, Arizona, and is expected to be completed in February 2027, Raytheon said.
It will replace the aging air-launched cruise missile that was fielded in the early 1980s with a 10-year design life. (Source: Reuters)
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.