Web Page sponsor Oxley Developments
17 Mar 17. Ukraine announces plans to develop new fighter. On 15 March Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko announced that the country’s defence industry will develop its own twin-engine, multirole fighter. The announcement was made during Poroshenko’s visit to the Ivchenko-Progress engine design bureau located in the southern Ukrainian city of Zaparozhe. This facility is also co-located with one of the largest aero-engine assembly sites in all of the former Soviet Union: the Motor Sich production plant.
Ukrainian aeronautical design teams have already produced what has been described as a “sketch outline” of a platform for a new fighter, which has been given the programme name of Legkiy Boiviy Litak, which is Ukrainian for “Lightweight Combat Aircraft” and abbreviated as LBL. The aircraft is supposed to bear a strong resemblance to the Soviet-designed Mikoyan MiG-29 in its external appearance, but the aircraft’s onboard systems will be of non-Russian origin.
One of the main differences between this new Ukrainian design and the original MiG-29 will be its engines and electronics. Reports from Poroshenko’s visit to the Ivchenko facility stated that the two engines would be “a design based on the AI-322F and the avionics would be of both Western and Ukrainian manufacture”.
The engine design appears to be one of the main drivers for this concept, with the Ukrainian president stating, “We will soon be able to create our own aircraft engine for the fighter.” Poroshenko also pointed out that Ukraine is among a small group of just five nations in the world that are capable of independently developing aero-engine designs.
Ukraine’s new fighter concept was first mentioned earlier in this month in an interview with Yuri Brovchenko, Ukraine’s deputy minister for economic development and trade. “On the subject of military aviation, today we are examining the possibility of developing our own indigenous fighter aircraft. There is a design team already working on this,” he told the publication Ukrainski Novini. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
17 Mar 17. Intelsat, Kymeta partner on small antennas for DoD coms. Intelsat is introducing two small, flat-panel antennas that automatically lock onto satellites to support US Department of Defense (DoD) communications.
The mTenna developed by Kymeta is a metamaterial, electrically scanned, satellite antenna intended for government maritime applications that require a low-profile antenna. Kymeta’s mTenna 70 cm variant will enter production in 2017.
“With the 70 cm antenna you can get high data rates. These are applications where [government customers] are looking to get 8-10 megabits per second off of [vessels], which is significant,” Mark Daniels, vice-president of new technology and service for Intelsat General told Jane’s on 9 March 2017. (Source: IHS Jane’s)
16 Mar 17. Details of North Korean C4I systems emerge. Details have emerged of North Korean C4I developments following a United Nations investigation into a Malaysian-based company used by North Korea to sell defence equipment abroad.
The company, Global Communications Co. (Glocom), was not previously known to be a North Korean entity and offers indications of the state’s domestic C4I capabilities. The company’s broad offering of C4I products includes manportable, vehicle-mounted, naval and air systems, as well as battle management systems (BMS), and cryptographic equipment. Glocom has already exported some of these, with a July 2016 maritime interdiction revealing that the company has supplied manportable radio equipment to Eritrea.
The manportable systems offered by Glocom include the GR-150 software-defined high frequency (HF) tactical radio, operating in the 1.6 to 30 MHz range with 10 hops per second digital frequency hopping, AES246 digital encryption, 3G ALE and NVIS functionality, and a remote-contr