Lockheed Martin will build on its 45-year legacy of integrated electronic warfare system success under a newly awarded U.S. Navy development contract to provide MH-60 helicopters with enhanced electronic warfare surveillance and countermeasure capabilities against Anti-Ship Missile (ASM) threats.
Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Off-Board Electronic Warfare (AOEW) Active Mission Payload (AMP) AN/ALQ-248 system, is a self-contained Electronic Warfare (EW) pod hosted by an MH-60R Seahawk or MH-60S Seahawk, which provides the U.S. Navy advanced ASM detection and response capabilities.
The AOEW program builds on Lockheed Martin’s legacy of proven electronic warfare solutions. The AOEW AMP AN/ALQ-248 can work independently or with the ship’s onboard electronic surveillance sensor, SEWIP Block 2 AN/SLQ-32(V)6, to detect an incoming missile and then evaluate where it is going. AOEW then uses radio frequency countermeasure techniques to deter the missile.
«Every day ships across the world are facing a variety of evolving threats», said Joe Ottaviano, electronic warfare program director. «Our Advanced Off-Board Electronic Warfare AMP AN/ALQ-248 system will help create a coordinated attack against these threats, to keep our warfighters safe by controlling the electromagnetic spectrum and disrupting adversaries».
Under this contract, if all options are exercised, Lockheed Martin will deliver up to 18 AOEW AMP AN/ALQ-248 pods to the U.S. Navy.
The AOEW program leverages expertise across Lockheed Martin. Manufacturing of the AOEW AN/ALQ-248 systems in Syracuse, New York, is slated to begin in early 2019 to meet the program’s 2021 initial operational capability goal. The Owego, New York, team will integrate the system onto the MH-60 helicopters, which are built by Sikorsky.
The U.S. Navy’s AN/AES-1 Airborne Laser Mine Detection System (ALMDS), designed and manufactured by Northrop Grumman Corporation, has achieved Initial Operational Capability. ALMDS provides rapid wide-area reconnaissance and assessment of mine threats in sea lanes, littoral zones, confined straits, choke points and amphibious areas of operations.
«With Initial Operational Capability (IOC), the ALMDS program has delivered a new and important capability to the U.S. Navy and to our nation – the first of its kind for mine warfare», said Erik Maskelony, assistant program manager, Airborne Laser Mine Detection System, Program Executive Office Littoral Combat Ships (PEO LCS), Mine Warfare Program Office (PMS 495).
The ALMDS system features several capabilities that make it the first of its kind. It leverages a sensor pod to rapidly sweep the water using laser technology. The sensor pod can also be rapidly installed on a medium-lift helicopter and quickly removed after mission completion. This agile system’s detection speed and accuracy will significantly improve the U.S. Navy’s mine detection capabilities and help ensure the safety of service members around the world.
«Using forward motion of the aircraft, ALMDS’ pulsed laser light generates 3-D images of the near-surface volume to detect, classify and localize near-surface moored sea mines», said Mark Skinner, vice president, directed energy, Northrop Grumman. «Highly accurate in day or night operations, the untethered ALMDS sensor conducts rapid wide-area searches with high accuracy».
The target data generated by ALMDS is displayed on a console and stored for post-mission analysis. The Navy’s ALMDS installation aboard the MH-60S Seahawk helicopter is mounted on a Bomb Rack Unit 14, which is installed on the Carriage, Stream, Tow, and Recovery System. Northrop Grumman’s self-contained design allows the system to be installed on other aircraft types.
Earlier this year, Northrop Grumman successfully integrated and demonstrated ALMDS on a UH-60M Blackhawk helicopter. The first international sale of ALMDS occurred in 2012 to the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF), and the JMSDF has completed flight qualification testing of ALMDS on an MCH-101 helicopter.
Leonardo has signed, with the Italian National Armaments Directorate of the Italian Defence Ministry, two contracts for an initial batch of five Aermacchi M-345 trainer aircraft and for the first phase of development and delivery programme of the new exploration and escort helicopter (NEES) for the Italian Army. The combined value of the contracts is in excess of 500 million euro/530 million dollars.
Mauro Moretti, Chief Executive Officer and General Manager of Leonardo, said: «The signing of these two contracts is the result of constructive discussions between the Italian Government and industry, which helped identify the requirements and the best technological answers. Thanks to this joint understanding, we’ll be able to deliver advanced solutions to our national customer by optimizing available financial resources and developing new technologies, skills and industrial processes in our country».
The Italian Air Force has a total requirement for around 45 M-345s (designated as T-345 by the Italian Armed Forces) to progressively replace the 137 in-service MB-339 aircraft which entered into operation in 1982. The new aircraft will work alongside the fleet of 18 twin-engine Aermacchi M-346s already ordered and currently used by the Italian Air Force for the advanced phase of pilot training. Together, the two aircraft types will form the world’s most advanced training system for military pilots. The M-345, thanks to its high performance and advanced ground-based training systems, will provide the Italian Air Force with a significant boost in the effectiveness of training, improved efficiency and a reduction in operational costs. The first delivery is expected by 2019.
The multiyear contract for the new exploration and escort helicopter (NEES) of the Italian Army envisages the study, development, industrialization, production and testing of a prototype and three initial production aircraft. Through this new programme, based on a total requirement for 48 units, the Italian Army will be able to replace the current fleet of AW129 which are expected to be retired from service by 2025 following over 35 years in operations. The NEES programme will benefit from the long operational expertise gained by the Italian Army thanks to the AW129 and from the know-how of Leonardo in this specific helicopter sector. It will allow the service to introduce an even more technologically advanced product, with greater performance and lower operating costs, to meet arising needs in evolving scenarios for the next 30 years.
Within the next fifty years, scientists at BAE Systems believe that battlefield commanders could deploy a new type of directed energy laser and lens system, called a Laser Developed Atmospheric Lens which is capable of enhancing commanders’ ability to observe adversaries’ activities over much greater distances than existing sensors.
At the same time, the lens could be used as a form of «deflector shield» to protect friendly aircraft, ships, land vehicles and troops from incoming attacks by high power laser weapons that could also become a reality in the same time period.
The Laser Developed Atmospheric Lens (LDAL) concept, developed by technologists at the Company’s military aircraft facility in Warton, Lancashire, has been evaluated by the Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC) Rutherford Appleton Laboratory and specialist optical sensors company LumOptica and is based on known science. It works by simulating naturally occurring phenomena and temporarily – and reversibly – changes the Earth’s atmosphere into lens-like structures to magnify or change the path of electromagnetic waves such as light and radio signals.
LDAL is a complex and innovative concept that copies two existing effects in nature; the reflective properties of the ionosphere and desert mirages. The ionosphere occurs at a very high altitude and is a naturally occurring layer of the Earth’s atmosphere which can be reflective to radio waves – for example it results in listeners being able to tune in to radio stations that are many thousands of miles away. The radio signals bounce off the ionosphere allowing them to travel very long distances through the air and over the Earth’s surface. The desert mirage provides the illusion of a distant lake in the hot desert. This is because the light from the blue sky is ‘bent’ or refracted by the hot air near the surface and into the vision of the person looking into the distance.
LDAL simulates both of these effects by using a high pulsed power laser system and exploiting a physics phenomena called the «Kerr Effect» to temporarily ionise or heat a small region of atmosphere in a structured way. Mirrors, glass lenses, and structures like Fresnel zone plates could all be replicated using the atmosphere, allowing the physics of refraction, reflection, and diffraction to be exploited.
«Working with some of the best scientific minds in the UK, we’re able to incorporate emerging and disruptive technologies and evolve the landscape of potential military technologies in ways that, five or ten years ago, many would never have dreamed possible», said Professor Nick Colosimo, BAE Systems’ Futurist and Technologist.
Professor Bryan Edwards, Leader of STFC’s Defence, Security and Resilience Futures Programme said of the work: «For this evaluation project, STFC’s Central Laser Facility team worked closely with colleagues at BAE Systems and by harnessing our collective expertise and capabilities we have been able to identify new ways in which cutting edge technology, and our understanding of fundamental physical processes and phenomena, has the potential to contribute to enhancing the safety and security of the UK».
Craig Stacey, CEO at LumOptica added: «This is a tremendously exciting time in laser physics. Emerging technologies will allow us to enter new scientific territories and explore ever new applications. We are delighted to be working with BAE Systems on the application of such game-changing technologies, evaluating concepts which are approaching the limits of what is physically possible and what might be achieved in the future».
BAE Systems has developed some of the world’s most innovative technologies and invests in research and development to generate future products and capabilities. The Company has a portfolio of patents and patent applications covering approximately 2000 inventions internationally. Earlier this year, the Company unveiled two other futuristic technology concepts, including envisaging that small Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs) bespoke to specific military operations, could be ‘grown’ in large-scale labs through chemistry and that armed forces of the future could be using rapid response aircraft equipped with engines capable of propelling those aircraft to hypersonic speeds to meet rapidly emerging threats.
Atmospheric lens could revolutionize the future of battlefield observation
BAE Systems’ Artisan 3D radar system has successfully completed three years of sea-based trials on the Royal Navy’s Type 23 frigates. Artisan 3D has also been fitted on the new aircraft carrier, HMS Queen Elizabeth which is due into Portsmouth later this year.
The radar, which can monitor more than 900 objects simultaneously from 656 feet/200 meters to 108 NM/124 miles/200 kilometers away – and cut through radio interference equal to 10,000 mobile phone signals – has undertaken sea trials across multiple Royal Navy frigates since 2013 and proved its capabilities in an operational environment.
Under a £105 million contact BAE Systems will develop, manufacture and provide support for 19 of the radars for the Royal Navy until 2022. The nineteenth Artisan 3D radar has now successfully completed factory acceptance testing and all 19 radars will be delivered to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) by mid-2017.
In addition to the 11 frigates fitted to date, Artisan 3D has also been fitted on the new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth, a landing platform dock assault ship, a landing platform helicopter assault ship and installed at MOD’s land-based test site at Portsdown Technology Park, Portsmouth.
Artisan will also be installed on the second of the new aircraft carriers HMS Prince of Wales, a further two frigates and a landing platform dock assault ship. Further trials will take place prior to each of the radars going into service.
Les Gregory, Director for Products and Training Services at BAE Systems said: «Artisan 3D is a ground-breaking radar system that delivers real capability to the Royal Navy with its supreme accuracy and uncompromising tracking. Its world-leading electronic protection measure ensures that even complex jammers will not reduce its effectiveness. Artisan 3D has now been extensively tested, demonstrating high performance with significant flexibility to meet current and future threats. It provides air and surface surveillance and target tracking to support platform and weapon system requirements on a wide range of platforms. BAE Systems is proud to continue its record of providing the most advanced radar capabilities to the Royal Navy».
Jonathan Barratt, Head of the Complex Weapons Team at the MOD’s Defence Equipment & Support said: «Artisan is a highly capable radar, providing record breaking track detection ranges against complex and demanding threats. This contract demonstrates how DE&S, industry and the Royal Navy are working collaboratively to deliver cutting-edge equipment, vital in supporting and protecting our Armed Forces».
Artisan is the most sophisticated radar in the Royal Navy’s fleet. Approximately five times more efficient than any previously in service on the Type 23 fleet.
Artisan’s range is between 656 feet/200 meters – 108 NM/124 miles/200 kilometers. It can identify birds as well as larger potential dangers such as destroyers and aircraft carriers.
Artisan can operate in densely signal-populated environments and cut through interference equivalent to 10,000 mobile signals directed its way.
The radar can identify a target the size of a tennis ball travelling at a speed of Mach 3 (over 2,000 mph/3,219 km/h), greater than 13.5 NM/15.5 miles/25 km away.
Artisan can track more than 900 targets at any one time.
Artisan is made of the same carbon glass fibre materials as a Formula 1 racing car.
On January 11, 2017, Patrol ship LNS Sėlis (P15) Lithuania had bought from Denmark was commissioned and named at a ceremony in Klaipėda. All moored Naval Flotilla ships flew signal flags and Lithuanian Navy crews paraded on the flotilla square.
Lithuanian Navy Chaplain blessed the ship and the crew according to a tradition. Representatives of Utena district council, partner LNS (Lithuanian Navy Ship) Sėlis crew since 2001 when patrol ship LNS Sėlis (P32) was commissioned, unveiled the name plaque of LNS Sėlis (P15) and signed a symbolic act of blessing.
Danish-built Flyvefisken-class patrol ship LNS Sėlis (P15) replaces technically obsolete LNS Sėlis (P32) which is planned to be written off.
From now on the Patrol Ship Squadron of the Naval Flotilla consists of four Flyvefisken-class ships of the same type: LNS Žemaitis (P11), LNS Dzūkas (P12), LNS Aukštaitis (P14), and LNS Sėlis (P15). Multifunctional and modern ships of the same type will ensure efficiency of the implementation of tasks.
The ceremony was attended by Minister of National Defence Raimundas Karoblis, Chief of Defence of Lithuania Lieutenant General Jonas Vytautas Žukas, Ambassador od Denmark in Lithuania HE Dan Eddie Frederiksen, commanders of services and units of the Lithuanian Armed Forces, foreign defence attachés in Lithuania, mayor of Utena district council Alvydas Katinas and a delegation.
INS Khanderi (S51), the second of Indian Navy’s Scorpene’ class stealth submarine, was «launched» by the Hon’ble Raksha Rajya Mantri, Doctor Subhash Bhamre paving the way for her sea trials. Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chief of the Naval Staff and a host of other dignitaries witnessed the launch at Mazagon Dock Shipyard Limited on 12 January, 2017.
The submarine is expected to be delivered to Navy by the year end. She has been christened after her illustrious predecessor, an erstwhile «Foxtrot» class submarine decommissioned in 1989, which is as per the traditions of Indian Navy. The construction of six Scorpene submarines is presently being progressed at Mazagon Dock Shipyard Limited (MDL), under Project 75 with Transfer of Technology from M/s DCNS, France as the Collaborator. The first of the class submarine, INS Kalvari (S50) is presently undergoing sea trials and likely to be commissioned into Navy by Mid-2017. These submarines, post induction, would form the core of Navy’s conventional Submarine Arm.
Speaking on the occasion Doctor Subhash Bhamre said that Project 75 Kalvari is a key milestone in self-reliance and indigenization for the country. Admiral Sunil Lanba, Chief of the Naval Staff said during his address that the fact that Submarine INS Khanderi (S51) compares with the best in the world, speaks highly of the experience and expertise our shipbuilders have gained over the years. He added that as Indian Navy celebrates Golden Jubilee of the submarine arm in 2017, the induction of Project 75 submarines would mark the beginning of a new chapter in our submarine capabilities.
The launching of Khanderi also marks a critical milestone event for the Shipyard which earlier has delivered two Shishumar class submarines in the 90’s and has now strengthened its position as a submarine building yard for Indian Navy. Started as a small dry dock facility for East India Company, MDL today has established itself as a forefront Defence Public Sector Undertaking, with indigenous construction of several ships and submarines for Navy such as P 15 B Destroyers and P 17 A class stealth Frigates being the latest.
Two of Europe’s most respected defence companies, Rheinmetall and Steyr Mannlicher, have joined forces to manufacture and market the RS556 modular assault rifle. This German-Austrian cooperation project adds a key item to Rheinmetall’s growing array of infantry products.
The RS556 is based on the highly regarded STM556, which Steyr Mannlicher first unveiled in 2012. Outstanding modularity characterizes this easy-to-use, future-proof 5.56-mm × 45 cal. weapon.
Rheinmetall and Steyr Mannlicher are offering the RS556 assault rifle as a jointly produced product, made in Germany, with a German valued added share of 60%. Among other things, the two partners thus have their sights set on the German market. This innovative weapon is a possible candidate for the new «System Sturmgewehr Bundeswehr»: the German armed forces intend to replace their standard G36 assault rifle with a more advanced system starting in 2019.
Rheinmetall and Steyr Mannlicher each have well over a century of experience in developing and manufacturing infantry weapons. The RS556 project underscores both companies’ commitment to supplying military and security services around the globe with reliable, future-proof, state-of-the-art systems and equipment.
Featuring an adjustable short-stroke gas piston system and rotating bolt, the gas-operated RS556 is based on the tried-and-tested Steyr Mannlicher AUG, or Universal Army Rifle, a design concept that has proven itself in decades of service on every continent.
With a 16″ barrel (406 mm) and a fully loaded, 30-round magazine, the RS556 weighs around 4.2 kilograms, just over 9 pounds. The adjustable-length light-weight stock clicks into seven different positions, meaning that operators can adjust the RS556 to match their individual equipment profile in optimum fashion.
In a matter of seconds and without tools, the hammer-forged barrel can be easily exchanged. This means that the RS556 can be readily modified for various missions.
A number of standard barrel lengths are available (14.5″, 16″, 18″ and 20″); however, customer-specific barrel and rifling lengths can be easily created.
The RS556 features several standard and optional NATO accessory rails with receiver systems designed in accordance with MIL-STD-1913, STANAG 2324 and STANAG 4694. This means that the weapon can be fitted with various optics and night observation devices or laser light modules. A 40mm grenade launcher can also be mounted on the new assault rifle. Moreover, the RS556 is compatible with Rheinmetall’s modular «Future Soldier – Expanded System» (IdZ-ES), and can also be connected to other soldier systems.
A special breech system with an emergency operation feature ensures that the weapon always functions reliably even in extreme operating conditions, e.g. in severely hot and cold environments.
In one of the most significant tests of autonomous systems under development by the Department of Defense (DoD), the Strategic Capabilities Office (SCO), partnering with Naval Air Systems Command, successfully demonstrated one of the world’s largest micro-drone swarms at China Lake, California. The test, conducted in October 2016 and documented on Sunday’s CBS News program «60 Minutes», consisted of 103 Perdix drones launched from three F/A-18 Super Hornets. The micro-drones demonstrated advanced swarm behaviors such as collective decision-making, adaptive formation flying, and self-healing.
«I congratulate the Strategic Capabilities Office for this successful demonstration», said Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, who created SCO in 2012. «This is the kind of cutting-edge innovation that will keep us a step ahead of our adversaries. This demonstration will advance our development of autonomous systems».
«Due to the complex nature of combat, Perdix are not pre-programmed synchronized individuals, they are a collective organism, sharing one distributed brain for decision-making and adapting to each other like swarms in nature», said SCO Director William Roper. «Because every Perdix communicates and collaborates with every other Perdix, the swarm has no leader and can gracefully adapt to drones entering or exiting the team».
The demonstration is one of the first examples of the Pentagon using teams of small, inexpensive, autonomous systems to perform missions once achieved only by large, expensive ones. Roper stressed the department’s conception of the future battle network is one where humans will always be in the loop. Machines and the autonomous systems being developed by the DoD, such as the micro-drones, will empower humans to make better decisions faster.
Originally designed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology engineering students, the Perdix drone was modified for military use by the scientists and engineers of MIT Lincoln Laboratory starting in 2013. Drawing inspiration from the commercial smartphone industry, Perdix software and hardware has been continually updated in successive design generations. Now in its sixth generation, October’s test confirmed the reliability of the current all-commercial-component design under potential deployment conditions – speeds of Mach 0.6, temperatures of minus 10 degrees Celsius, and large shocks – encountered during ejection from fighter flare dispensers.
The «60 Minutes» segment also featured other new technology from across the Department of Defense such as the U.S. Navy’s unmanned ocean-going vessel, the Sea Hunter, and the Marine Corps’ Unmanned Tactical Control and Collaboration program.
As SCO works with the military Services to transition Perdix into existing programs of record, it is also partnering with the Defense Industrial Unit-Experimental, or DIUx, to find companies capable of accurately replicating Perdix using the MIT Lincoln Laboratory design. Its goal is to produce Perdix at scale in batches of up to 1,000.
2.6 inches/66 mm
6.5 inches/165 mm
11.8 inches/300 mm
10 oz/290 g
>40‐60 knots/46-69 mph/74-111 km/h
DoD Announces Successful Perdix Micro-Drone Demonstration
Tanks, trucks and other equipment are scheduled to arrive in Europe January 6 through 9, beginning a nine-month rotation of U.S. Army forces supporting Atlantic Resolve.
Atlantic Resolve demonstrates the U.S. commitment to the security of NATO allies on air, land and at sea. To ensure its own security, NATO must have strong, committed and capable allies, which is why the United States has fought, exercised and trained with our European allies for the past 70 years. The U.S.-European strategic partnership is built on a foundation of shared values, experiences and commitment to a Europe that is stable and prosperous.
The arrival of troops and equipment from 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team (ABCT), 4th Infantry Division, out of Fort Carson, Colorado, marks the beginning of the continuous presence of an ABCT and back-to-back rotations of U.S. troops and equipment in Europe.
After the equipment arrives at Bremerhaven, Germany, it will move by rail, commercial line haul and military convoy to Poland consolidating near Drawsko Pomorskie and Zagan training areas. The personnel and equipment will later be relocated throughout the region for training and exercises with European allies.
The 21st Theater Sustainment Command (TSC) is U.S. Army in Europe’s lead organization for all sustainment activities including logistics support, transportation, combat sustainment, human resources, medical, finance, contracting and other areas in the field of sustainment. The 21st TSC also serves as the responsible headquarters for USAREUR’s Military Police and Engineer brigades, providing combat engineers and military police to partnership training and other operations in support of USAREUR, US Africa Command and US Central Command.
Headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany, with units throughout the USAREUR Area of Operations, the 21st TSC is truly positioned to be USAREUR’s key enabler, where it is needed, when it is needed.