Sep 27, 2009
Australia's Department of Defence has cut short the scope of a project to provide electronic warfare self-protection suites for its army's fleet of Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters. Canberra will complete modifications to 12 Black Hawks to "provide a basic level of electronic warfare self protection", but will not go ahead with an advanced equipment suite that includes the BAE Systems Australia ALR-2002 radar warning receiver. "Defence has reassessed the operational requirement and has determined that the fitting of additional electronic warfare self protection capabilities would have an adverse effect on aircraft availability," says Greg Combet, minister for defence personnel, materiel and science. "Black Hawk helicopters are currently being utilised for a wide variety of roles for the ADF [Australian Defence Force] and it is vital that they continue to be available to fulfil these roles." Combet adds that the "return on investment involved in completing, installing and sustaining the advanced electronic warfare suite would not be justified, given the remaining life of the Black Hawk fleet". The decision will save Canberra AUSD 50 million (USD 43.8 million), he says. The upgrades were part of Project Air 5416 - Project Echidna, in which Australia awarded a AUSD 135 million contract to BAE Systems in 2005 to design, develop, integrate and install electronic warfare self-protection capability for the army's Black Hawk and Boeing CH-47 Chinook transport helicopters. Sep 24, 2009
Airbus Military is targeting sales of up to 50 more A330-based multi-role tanker transports (MRTT) outside the USA, as it prepares to step up flight-testing of the first aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force. A draft request for proposals for the latest iteration of the US Air Force's long-standing KC-X requirement, covering at least 100 aircraft, is also expected soon. Sales of the A330 MRTT stand at 28 - for Australia (five), Saudi Arabia (six), the United Arab Emirates (three) and the UK (14). Sep 23, 2009
Alenia Aermacchi, Korea Aerospace Industries/Lockheed Martin
Alenia Aermacchi's M-346 Master and the Korea...