Jul 10. Tank Ammunition: None Available for Training. Commenting on the Defence budget deficit and the advent of the Coalition Government, the Commanding Officer of First Royal Tank Regiment observes: “We are already beginning to see the impacts. For example, A Squadron will deploy to Castlemartin Ranges in July to conduct annual firing without any 120mm ammunition.”.
Comment: The Commanding Officer’s report is to be found in the Summer 2010 edition of ‘Tank’ and he goes on to comment that “firing sub-calibre ammunition is no replacement for the real thing”.(Source: DNA DEFENCE NEWS ANALYSIS, Issue 09/230, 02 Aug 10)
27 Jul 10. UK Sea Kings arm up for Afghanistan. The UK’s Commando Helicopter Force (CHF) has upgraded its Westland Sea King HC.4+ helicopters with the FN Herstal M3M .50 calibre door gun for operations over Afghanistan. Speaking during gun training at Salisbury Plain in mid-July, CHF Command aviation warfare officer, Lieutenant Commander Nigel Gates, told Jane’s that the M3M is being adopted as it has a higher rate of fire than the incumbent 7.62 mm General Purpose Machine Gun (GPMG) . (Source: Jane’s, IDR)
26 Jul 10. CCM unveils Centurion shipboard soft-kill decoy launcher. UK-based Chemring Countermeasures (CCM) has revealed a new trainable shipborne soft-kill decoy launcher to meet requirements for improved countermeasures payload placement. Known as Centurion, the 130 mm 12-barrel system is being offered as a candidate option for the UK’s Maritime Integrated Defensive Aids Suite (MIDAS) programme. (Source: Jane’s, IDR)
29 Jul 10. Malaysian sub successfully test-fires SM39 Exocet. The Royal Malaysian Navy (RMN) submarine KD Tunku Abdul Rahman successfully conducted a submerged test-firing of an MBDA SM39 Block II Exocet Anti-Ship Missile on 26 July. The test-firing was conducted in the South China Sea, off the coast of East Malaysia, as part of the submarine’s ‘tropicalisation’ trials. (Source: Jane’s Navy International)
29 Jul 10. Leaked reports confirm SAM launches against ISAF aircraft. Classified reports released by the web site Wikileaks – which have caused a furore in the United States – indicate that heat-seeking surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) have been used by insurgents against coalition forces in Afghanistan, a situation that operators in theatre had hitherto declined to confirm. The US Department of Defense has yet to confirm the authenticity of the reports (more than 92,000 of them were leaked) and will not comment on the information until its assessments are complete. (Source: Jane’s, IDR)
27 Jul 10. Griffin demonstrates image data fusion. DEP Imaging’s Griffin digital image intensification (II) and thermal imaging (TI) fusion device has been integrated into two new monocular viewers, Przemyslowe Centrum Optyki’s (PCO’s) MTN-1 and ITL Optronics’ Tamir. Image fusion enables the user to see in complete darkness, presenting a clearer image, revealing hidden objects invisible in classical night-vision technology. (Source: Jane’s, IDR)
30 Jul 10. For the first time, UK troops are using a special app developed for the iPad to learn how to handle a fire mission. That’s when artillery is being fired at the enemy from several miles away. In early trials at the Royal School of Artillery in Wiltshire, troops have
learned the jargon and procedures more quickly than before, when they were sat listening to lessons from instructors. It’s hoped smartphone and tablet technology could be used to speed up training across the army. Lance Bombardier Jason Markham from 1st Regiment Royal Horse Artillery has already served in Afghanistan and is in training for a second tour.
He told Newsbeat how it works. He said: “I’d be at the HQ – the troops on the ground would call me for fire support and they’d give me the target location and a description of the target.
“We’d use all of that information to come up with a solution.
“This has been designed to let us practise, so that when we get out there