19 Apr 11. French and U.S. air forces are both looking at acquiring the dual-mode Brimstone missile used by the Royal Air Force, according to Britain’s Assistant Chief of the Air Staff. The Brimstone missile was developed by The Boeing Co. and MBDA. Speaking April 19 at an Air Power Association dinner, Air Vice Marshall Baz North said the Boeing/MBDA-developed weapon used on RAF Tornado aircraft in
Afghanistan and now Libya has caught the attention of both of Britain’s premier allies. The “dual-mode Brimstone is now being sought by the U.S. and France,” North said. The weapon was developed as an anti-armor missile, but upgrades allow it to hit fleeting targets like terrorists on motorbikes or pickup trucks. (Source: Defense News)
19 Apr 11. BAE Systems displayed the Boldstroke™ directable infrared countermeasure system at the Army Aviation Association of America’s Annual Professional Forum and Exhibition. In the near future, BAE Systems will submit its proposal for the U.S. Army Common Infrared Countermeasure (CIRCM) program with its Boldstroke™ directable infrared countermeasures suite, designed to protect aircraft from infrared-guided missiles and other evolving threats. The Boldstroke™ system represents $83m in company investment in technology and infrastructure to develop the next generation in aircraft survivability equipment and support capability. Boldstroke is a lightweight and highly reliable directable infrared countermeasure suite which uses modular open-system architecture and non-proprietary interfaces that support interchangeability and technology insertion. Boldstroke synthesizes the best attributes of prior generation laser jamming systems to meet the size, weight, and power requirements of both light and heavy rotary-wing platforms. Boldstroke is fully compatible with BAE Systems’ field-proven Common Missile Warning System and consists of flight-proven hardware and algorithms ready for low-risk transition to operational testing. Its compact pointer/tracker is based on a flight-tested gimbal design and advances laser technology to address emerging threats. The system reduces A-Kit and B-Kit weight to maximize aircraft useful payload and increases weapon system availability, providing significant life-cycle cost savings. (Source: Yahoo!/BUSINESS WIRE)
15 Apr 11. Lockheed Martin’s Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) system successfully tracked and engaged an intermediate range ballistic missile using data from a remote AN/TPY-2 radar during a test off the coast of Hawaii. This marked the Aegis BMD system’s first engagement against an intermediate range ballistic missile, as well as the first time the system used a launch-on-remote capability, which allows the Aegis BMD system to employ remote sensors to detect threats as early in flight as possible. The Aegis BMD system fired a Standard Missile using real-time information from a remote sensor prior to the shipboard SPY-1 radar acquiring the inbound ballistic missile. The USS O’KANE (DDG-77) employed the first generation Aegis BMD configuration to complete this exercise conducted by the Missile Defense Agency, the U.S. Navy and Lockheed Martin. This configuration, which added the capability for ships to defend themselves from short range ballistic missiles in the terminal phase of flight, was certified for operations by the Navy in March 2008.
15 Apr 11. In a scenario representing the protection of a sensitive zone against weapons launched from a secure distance, VL MICA has once again demonstrated the high level of its operational capabilities. On the 13th April 2011, at the French DGA-Essais Missiles test centre in Biscarosse, South West France, a VL MICA missile launched from a ground based vertical launcher and controlled by a Tactical Operations Centre (TOC) developed by MBDA, intercepted a manoeuvring target flying at medium altitude and at a range greater than 15 km. The objective of the test firing was to demonstrate the capabilities of the