Counter-sUAS System

Northrop Grumman Corporation’s Forward Area Air Defense Command and Control (FAAD C2) system has been selected by the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) as the interim command and control system for future Counter-Small Unmanned Aerial System (C-sUAS) procurements.

Forward Area Air Defense Command and Control is Department of Defense system of choice for Counter-Small Unmanned Aerial System

The decision follows the findings of a service board established by the DOD’s Joint Counter-Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (C-sUAS) Office to evaluate and provide an order-of-merit list for «best-of-breed» systems to counter small drones. The down-select board was comprised of representatives from the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Special Operations Command, and senior representatives from the acquisition, technical, operational and other communities. FAAD C2 will serve as the current joint common C-sUAS C2 platform while an enduring solution is developed.

«Our FAAD C2 has been saving lives at Forward Operating Bases and locations around the world since 2005», said Kenn Todorov, vice president and general manager, combat systems and mission readiness, Northrop Grumman. «FAAD C2 continuously evolves to defend against new threats like small unmanned aerial systems and will continue to be the gold standard for protection of our troops whether stationed at bases or on the move».

FAAD C2 is a battle-proven C2 system, deployed in several theaters of operation for the C-UAS and C-RAM (Counter-Rocket, Artillery and Mortar) missions for its proven performance and flexibility that enables easy integration with available sensors, effectors and warning systems to launch rapid, real-time defense against short range and maneuvering threats. It also has been selected as the C2 system for the Army’s Initial Maneuver Short Range Air Defense (IM-SHORAD) platforms. FAAD-C2 is built on the open architecture common to the Northrop Grumman all-domain C4I solution ecosystem and will ultimately converge into the US Army’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System (IBCS).

Northrop Grumman solves the toughest problems in space, aeronautics, defense and cyberspace to meet the ever-evolving needs of our customers worldwide. Our 90,000 employees define possible every day using science, technology and engineering to create and deliver advanced systems, products and services.

OneSat

Airbus Defence and Space has won a contract for a fully reconfigurable telecommunications satellite from Australia’s second largest telecommunications company and leading satellite operator Optus. The satellite will be based on Airbus’ new standard OneSat product line and is Airbus’ first contract from the Australian operator.

Airbus signs contract with Optus for OneSat

Airbus will deliver an end-to-end solution, including design and manufacture of the Optus 11 spacecraft, as well as an advanced digital suite to manage the digital payload and operate the end-to-end satellite resources, providing Optus with a turnkey system and the ability to add hosted payloads such as SBAS.

What sets Optus 11 apart is its ability to adjust its coverage, capacity and frequency, through on board processing and active antennas with beam forming capability. It will deliver power and bandwidth dynamically to strengthen capacity and resilience of Optus fleet and enable Optus to configure and adapt the payload mission to end-user needs, taking advantage of the latest innovations in payload and resource management.

Optus 11 will deliver a combination of broadcast and broadband VHTS missions in Ku band over Australia and New Zealand, to improve Direct to Home broadcasting over the Australasia region, increase reach in the Antarctic and Pacific zones and support growth into mobile markets, helping eliminate connectivity black spots through the Australian Government’s Mobile Black Spot programme.

Airbus’ Head of Space Systems, Jean-Marc Nasr said: «We are grateful to Optus for their trust in Airbus in a region where we have ambitions to work with local industry to support space technology development in both the civil and defence sectors. OneSat is a truly disruptive product, both from a manufacturing, and operational point of view, and gives customers the flexibility they need to serve their markets. This contract from Australia’s leading satellite operator, Optus, is a ringing endorsement that our R&D strategy in developing innovative products is the right one. OneSat’s high flexibility, very compact design and accelerated production should see the satellite in orbit for Optus in 2023».

Airbus’ ‘ready-made’ OneSat satellite builds on the company’s heritage from its highly reliable Eurostar telecommunications satellites, which have clocked up more than 800 years of successful operation in orbit.

This order further strenghtens Airbus’ leadership in new generation reconfigurable telecommunications satellites and enables Optus with the option to add additional spacecraft in the near future.

The investments made by Airbus and its partners in very innovative OneSat developments are supported by the European Space Agency and national agencies, in particular the UK and French space agencies.

Advanced Hawkeye

The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of France of three (3) E-2D Advanced Hawkeye Aircraft and related equipment for an estimated cost of $2 billion. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on July 6, 2020.

France operates Grumman E-2C Hawkeye airborne early warning aircraft aboard its flagship, the Charles de Gaulle nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, and plans to replace them with three E-2D Advanced Hawkeyes at a cost of about $2 billion (USN photo)

The Government of France requests to buy:

  • three (3) E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft;
  • ten (10) T-56-427A engines (6 installed and 4 spares);
  • three (3) AN/APY-9 radar assemblies;
  • four (4) AN/ALQ-217 electronic support measure systems (3 installed and 1 spare);
  • three (3) AN/AYK-27 Integrated Navigation Channels and Display Systems;
  • five (5) Link-16 (MIDS-JTRS) Communications Systems (3 installed and 2 spares);
  • ten (10) Embedded GPS/INS (EGI) Devices (6 installed and 4 spares);
  • four (4) AN/APX-122(A) and AN/APX-123(A) Identification, Friend or Foe systems (3 installed and 1 spare);
  • one (1) Joint Mission Planning System.

Also included are Common Systems Integration Laboratories with/Test Equipment, one in Melbourne, Florida, and the other in France; air and ground crew equipment; support equipment; spare and repair parts; publications and technical documentation; transportation; training and training equipment; U.S. Government and contractor logistics, engineering, and technical support services; and other related elements of logistics and program support.

The total estimated program cost is $2 billion.

This proposed sale will support the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve security of a NATO ally which is an important force for political stability and economic progress in Europe.

The proposed sale will improve France’s capability to meet current and future threats by providing its Naval Air Forces with a sustainable follow on capability to their current, legacy E-2C Hawkeye aircraft.

The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft will continue and expand French naval aviation capabilities and maintain interoperability with U.S. naval forces. As a current E-2C operator, France will have no difficulty absorbing this equipment and support into its armed forces.

The proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

The principal contractor will be Northrop Grumman Systems Corp, Aerospace Systems, Melbourne, Florida. There are no known offset agreements proposed in connection with this potential sale. Any offset agreement will be defined in negotiations between the Purchaser and the prime contractor.

Implementation of this proposed sale will not require the assignment of any additional U.S. Government or contractor representatives to France.

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness resulting from this proposed sale.

This notice of a potential sale is required by law and does not mean the sale has been concluded.

Radiation-Hardened
Radios

BAE Systems has delivered its first shipment of next-generation radiation-hardened software defined radios (SDR) enabled by its RAD5545 computer to Lockheed Martin Space. The radios provide spacecraft with the performance, availability, reliability and on-board signals processing capacity needed to support future space missions – from planetary exploration to communications, national security, surveillance, and weather missions.

RAD5545 software defined radios are on their way to Lockheed Martin to support future space missions

«Our RAD5545 software defined radios are ideal for any mission requiring reconfigurable radio processing», said Ricardo Gonzalez, director of Space Systems at BAE Systems. «The radios can be easily modified to address various reconfigurable processing solutions».

BAE Systems’ software defined radio is anchored by the RAD5545 Single Board Computer (SBC), providing the most advanced radiation-hardened quad core general purpose processing solution available today to address future threats on a variety of missions. The system leverages modular and standard building blocks including a SpaceVPX chassis and backplane electrical connectors, Serial RapidIO and Spacewire interfaces, and a fully supported expansion port for a custom interface card.

Adhering to industry standards, this flexible and adaptable architecture supports reconfiguration for other missions by simply swapping out SpaceVPX modules, a highly desirable feature in today’s space hardware.

BAE Systems’ next-generation software defined radios, centered around the RAD5545 computer, represent a significant advance in high reliability reconfigurable electronics systems. Increased processing power, and a radiation-hardened design combine for a product line that can enable increased mission flexibility.

The RAD5545 SBC delivers exponential improvements in size, speed, and power efficiency over its predecessor single board computers. BAE Systems also offers a suite of radiation-hardened Serial RapidIO network products that complement the RAD5545 SBC and allow the user to efficiently manage and route data through a system. Products include the RADNET 1848-PS, an 18-Port RapidIO Packet Switch, the RADNET 1616-XP Crosspoint, a protocol agnostic SerDes signal circuit switch and replicator, and the RADNET SRIO-EP, a Serial RapidIO endpoint.

The RAD5545 SDR was developed at BAE Systems’ sites in Merrimack, NH, and Manassas, VA, and is produced in Manassas.

Beyond-Line-Of-Sight

MBDA is joining with 13 partners and subcontractors from 5 countries to develop a new capability based on the MMP missile system (Missile Moyenne Portée, Medium-Range Missile) that will be unique for mounted and dismounted forces.

MBDA’s MMP missile selected to fulfill the European Beyond-Line-Of-Sight battlefield engagement capability

LynkEUs, an MBDA coordinated project, has been selected by the European Commission as part of the new European Defence Industrial Development Programme (EDIDP), following consultation with Member States.

LynkEUs is the first technological and industrial contribution to the objectives of the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO) Beyond Line Of Sight (BLOS) capability project. The BLOS capability project had been approved in November 2018 by the EU Defence Ministers.

The LynkEUs project is managed in close partnership with the French, Belgian and Cypriot armed forces. The project seeks to define an initial operational concept for a European BLOS capability. It will also provide an opportunity to identify and test emerging solutions of potential value for future upgrades to the capability, and will be validated by a test campaign.

The concepts and tests completed for the PESCO BLOS project will contribute to the development of a family of man-on-the loop BLOS missile systems with back image, based on the MMP medium range missile, and under full control of Europe’s defence industry.

Eric Béranger, MBDA CEO, said: «LynkEUs is the first cooperative project in the missile systems field leveraging on the new EU defence instruments, and the first EU defence R&D project to be coordinated by MBDA. It demonstrates our eagerness to cooperate to an ever-greater extent in Europe and to expand our circle of industrial and technological partnerships, particularly with innovative SMEs and European research centres. It also demonstrates our commitment to serve European strategic autonomy and technological sovereignty ambitions».

MBDA and its 10 partners – from Belgium: The Royal Military Academy, John Cockerill Defense, FN Herstal, Thales Belgium, and Xenics; from Cyprus: Aditess, Cyprus Institute, and SignalGenerix; from France: Novadem and Safran; along with the 3 subcontractors: MILREM (from Estonia), DELAIR (from France), and Carmenta (from Sweden) – are now entering the negotiation phase of the grant agreement with the Commission.

This first success at the European level paves the way for further collaborative projects, that will consolidate a European BLOS capability by developing associated functions such as training systems and cooperative engagement. These new projects could be eligible for the future European Defence Fund as early as 2021.

Light Tactical Vehicles

Oshkosh Defense, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation company, announced on July 1, 2020 that the U.S. Army Contracting Command, Detroit Arsenal has placed an order for 248 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles (JLTVs) and associated kits.

Oshkosh Defense Receives Order for 248 Joint Light Tactical Vehicles

Today’s announced order is valued at $127 million and includes vehicles for the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps and the Department of State.

«The JLTV was designed to provide our troops with unmatched mission capabilities», said George Mansfield, vice president and general manager of joint programs for Oshkosh Defense. «And while adversaries, terrains, and tactics have all evolved immensely since the vehicle’s conception, the JLTV’s flexible design allows the light tactical vehicle fleet to evolve at a similar pace».

One such example of the JLTV’s flexibility, is its capability to accept any number of advances in weapons, lasers, sensors, networking, and communications.

To date, Oshkosh has successfully integrated multiple weapons on the JLTV such as Remote Weapon Systems up to 30-mm, anti-tank missile systems, anti-aircraft missile systems, Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) systems, and Counter-UAV systems. These systems on the JLTV offer both the protection and the highly reliable defense technologies needed for troops to defeat near-peer adversaries.

Over 7,500 total vehicles have been delivered to the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Air Force, and U.S. Navy since the production contract was awarded in 2015. Additionally, foreign interest in the JLTV continues to grow. Several NATO countries have publicly expressed interest in procuring the vehicle, including Lithuania, Slovenia, United Kingdom, and Montenegro.

FLOTLOG program

The steel cutting of the first of four forward sections for as many logistic support units LSS (Logistic Support Ship) ordered by Chantiers de l’Atlantique to Fincantieri under the FLOTLOG program («Flotte logistique») took place at the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard.

The Group will build for Chantiers de l’Atlantique, the forward sections of the four logistic support ships under the Franco-Italian LSS program led by OCCAR

The sections will be built at the Castellammare di Stabia shipyard with deliveries scheduled between 2021 and 2027.

The FLOTLOG program consists in the construction of four Logistic Support Ships (LSS), destined to the French Navy, by the temporary consortium between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Naval Group under the Franco-Italian LSS Program led by OCCAR (Organisation for Joint Armament Co-operation) on behalf of DGA, the French Armament General Directorate, and its Italian counterpart, NAVARM (Italian Ministry of Defense).

This cooperation between Chantiers de l’Atlantique and Fincantieri is part of the broader Franco-Italian alliance in the naval surface ship domain.

The highly innovative LSS program, similarly to the units of the multi-year program for the renewal of the Italian Navy’s fleet, provides a considerable degree of efficiency and flexibility in serving different mission profiles.

Furthermore, the LSS unit combines features of transportation and transfer to other vessels of both liquid (diesel fuel, jet fuel, fresh water) and solid loads (emergency spare parts, food and ammunitions).

Infantry Squad Vehicle

The U.S. Army Contracting Command – Detroit Arsenal announced on June 26, 2020 that GM Defense LLC, a subsidiary of General Motors, has been awarded the production contract to build, field and sustain the Army’s new Infantry Squad Vehicle (ISV).

GM Defense awarded a $214.3 million contract to produce the U.S. Army’s Infantry Squad Vehicle

Designed to provide rapid ground mobility, the expeditionary ISV is a light and agile all-terrain troop carrier intended to transport a nine-Soldier infantry squad moving throughout the battlefield. The ISV is light enough to be sling loaded from a UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter and compact enough to fit inside a CH-47 Chinook helicopter for air transportability. The total production ISV contract award value is $214.3 million to procure the initial Army Procurement Objective of 649. The approved Army Acquisition Objective is 2,065 vehicles.

GM Defense’s solution to the Army’s next-generation transportation needs is based off the award-winning 2020 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 midsize truck architecture and leverages 90 percent commercial off-the-shelf parts. These parts include the Multimatic dual spool-valve dampers and Chevrolet Performance suspension components. The durability and performance of those components have been proven in the grueling Best in the Desert race series, where Colorado is one of only four vehicles to complete 11 consecutive races (out of a total of 434 competitors).

As a result, GM Defense can deliver an ISV with world class manufacturing efficiencies, ease of maintenance and a well-established global supply chain. All ISV models will be equipped with an occupant and cargo superstructure powered by a 186-horsepower, 2.8L Duramax turbo-diesel engine, and six-speed automatic transmission.

«Winning this Army award is well-deserved recognition for the hard work and dedication of our GM Defense team and their production of a fantastic vehicle. We are confident the GMD ISV will meet and exceed all of our customers’ requirements», said David Albritton, president of GM Defense. «It’s indeed an honor to leverage our parent company’s experience as one of the world’s largest automotive manufacturers to design, build and deliver the best technologies available to the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces and our allies».

In 2019, GM Defense partnered with Ricardo Defense after the U.S. Army awarded three $1 million contracts to competing industry providers to develop ISV prototypes for testing, evaluation and down-selection for the production contract. Ricardo Defense will support key product logistics and fielding requirements of the GM Defense ISV.

«The entire Ricardo team is proud to continue our work with GM Defense on the ISV contract, and to provide our infantry troops in harm’s way with this highly-capable, and much needed vehicle», said Chet Gryczan, president of Ricardo Defense. «Being awarded the ISV program is a testament to Ricardo’s success in developing and delivering key integrated product logistics and life-cycle sustainment plans for our customers’ top priorities. The ISV will showcase the speed at which the Army can rapidly produce, field and sustain new equipment by leveraging a proven commercially available vehicle and the global supply chain infrastructure of General Motors, supported by Ricardo».

GM Defense is driving the future of military mobility by leveraging the best-in-class capabilities of General Motors for unmatched innovation, proven performance and breakthrough life-cycle economics.

Expeditionary Sea Base

Construction of the fourth Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ship officially began on June 25 at the General Dynamics National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (GD-NASSCO) shipyard in San Diego, California. Due to the COVID pandemic, the milestone was marked with an informal shipyard ceremony.

Commander Chris Schindler, Officer in Charge, Supervisor of Shipbuilding Bath (det. San Diego) commences construction of the fourth Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB-6) at General Dynamics National Steel and Shipbuilding Company shipyard, June 25. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the milestone was marked with an informal shipyard ceremony (Photo by U.S. Navy Released)

Expeditionary Sea Base ships are highly flexible platforms that are used across a broad range of military operations supporting multiple operational phases. Acting as a mobile sea base, they are part of the critical access infrastructure that supports the deployment of forces and supplies to provide prepositioned equipment and sustainment with flexible distribution.

«This is a great Navy day as we mark the start of construction on the fourth ship in a class of flexible, adaptable ships that will provide our combatant commanders with enhanced capabilities», said Tim Roberts, Strategic and Theater Sealift program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO), Ships. «The ESB platform has proven to be a valuable addition to the Navy and Marine Corps battle force».

Expeditionary Sea Bases support Aviation Mine Countermeasure and Special Operations Force missions. In addition to the flight deck, the ESB has a hangar with two aviation operating spots capable of handling MH-53E Super Stallion equivalent helicopters, accommodations, work spaces, and ordnance storage for embarked force, enhanced Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C4I) to support embarked force mission planning and execution and reconfigurable mission deck area to store embarked force equipment to include mine sleds and Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats (RHIBs).

In 2019, the U.S. Navy made the decision to commission all Expeditionary Sea Base ships to allow them to conduct a broader and more lethal mission set, compared to original plans for them to operate with a USNS designation. ESBs are commanded by a Navy O-6 with a hybrid-manned crew of military personnel and Military Sealift Command civilian mariners. This designation provides combatant commanders greater operational flexibility as to how the platform is employed.

In addition to ESB-6, NASSCO is under contract for the construction of ESB-7, with an option for ESB-8, as well as the U.S. Navy’s John Lewis Class Fleet Replenishment Oilers (T-AO 205 – 210).

As one of the Defense Department’s largest acquisition organizations, PEO Ships is responsible for executing the development and procurement of all destroyers, amphibious ships, special mission and support ships, boats and craft.

Multi Role Tanker

Airbus has formally delivered the first of eight Airbus A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft ordered by the NATO Multinational MRTT Fleet (MMF) after a ceremony held at the Airbus Getafe site in Spain. The official acceptance of this first aircraft marks a decisive milestone towards the entry into service of this multinational unit formed by the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Norway, Germany, Belgium and the Czech Republic.

The above image shows the first A330 MRTT taking off during an industrial flight performed at Getafe, Spain

The aircraft will take off tomorrow towards its Main Operating Base located in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. The MMF fleet will also operate from a second location, the Forward Operating Base in Cologne, Germany.

Dirk Hoke, Chief Executive Officer of Airbus Defence and Space, said: «The NATO MMF programme perfectly represents the future of defence cooperation and shows the true success of the pooling and sharing concept. As a trusted partner for the armed forces, Airbus is extremely proud to see its A330 MRTT at the forefront and ready to secure decisive capabilities and interoperability for NATO partner nations».

Peter Dohmen, NATO Support and Procurement Agency (NSPA) General Manager, said: «The MMF programme is a prime example of excellent cooperation between nations, the EU and NATO and the strong collaboration between OCCAR and NSPA. This unique state-of-the-art capability will enable our participating nations to perform a wide range of operations in multiple domains. We thank the nations for their continued trust in NSPA as the system manager and wish them success in their future missions».

Matteo Bisceglia, Director of the Organisation for Joint Armament Cooperation (OCCAR), said: «The delivery of the first MMF aircraft marks a key milestone of the MMF ADS acquisition contract managed by OCCAR. OCCAR is proud to have delivered this aircraft to the customer on time without any shortfalls in performance or over cost. Key points for this success are the MMF Nations’ trust in the ability of NSPA and OCCAR to efficiently manage the Programme, the excellent cooperation with the EU and the willingness to succeed of the experienced MMF team».

The MMF programme is funded by the six nations which will have the exclusive right to operate the NATO-owned aircraft in a pooling arrangement. The aircraft will be configured for in-flight refuelling, the transport of passengers and cargo, and medical evacuation operations.

The European Defence Agency (EDA) initiated the MMF programme in 2012. OCCAR manages the MMF acquisition phase and the first two years of the Initial In-Service-Support as Contract Executing Agent on behalf of NSPA. Following the acquisition phase, NSPA will be responsible for the complete life-cycle management of the fleet.

The A330 MRTT combines the advanced technology of a new generation tanker with the operational experience recorded during more than 200,000 flight hours in service. The A330 MRTT is interoperable with receivers worldwide and delivers true multi-role capabilities as proven during the recent medical evacuation (MEDEVAC) and strategic transport missions related to the COVID-19 pandemic.