BMD co-ordination

The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and Sailors aboard the USS Carney (DDG-64), USS Gonzalez (DDG-66) and USS Barry (DDG-52) successfully completed a flight test today involving the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) weapon system.

Distributed Weighted Engagement Scheme helped ships avoid launching multiple missiles to counter threats
Distributed Weighted Engagement Scheme helped ships avoid launching multiple missiles to counter threats

At approximately 2:30 a.m. EST, three short-range ballistic missile targets were launched near-simultaneously from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, Virginia. Two Aegis BMD destroyers acquired and tracked the targets, while another destroyer participated in associated operations. Using this data, the Aegis BMD ships conducted simulated Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IB guided missile engagements with the Distributed Weighted Engagement Scheme (DWES) capability enabled.

The DWES provides an automated engagement coordination scheme between multiple Aegis BMD ships that determines which ship is the preferred shooter, reducing duplication of BMD engagements and missile expenditures while ensuring BMD threat coverage. Several fire control, discrimination, and engagement functions were exercised. Since no SM-3 guided missiles were launched, the test did not include an attempted intercept.

This test was designated Flight Test Other 19 (FTX-19). This was the first flight test to assess the ability of the Aegis BMD 4.0 weapon system to simulate engagements of a raid consisting of three short-range, separating ballistic missile targets. This was also the first time Aegis BMD 4.0 ships used the DWES capability with live targets.

According to Geoff Fein, Jane’s Defence Weekly reporter, in this scenario one ship took two shots and one ship took one. The USS Gonzalez (DDG-66) took two shots based on how DWES determined who had best shot. The system can be configured to automatically fire or have operator intervention. Both ships fired simulated Standard Missile-3s. A third ship, USS Barry (DDG-52), equipped with Aegis baseline 9, also took part in the test, but it did not participate in the co-ordinated tracking and engagement of the three ballistic missile targets.

Three short-range ballistic missile targets are launched from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Virginia, in support of FTX-19
Three short-range ballistic missile targets are launched from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Virginia, in support of FTX-19

USS Barry (DDG-52) was tracking the three targets and doing simulated engagements similar to what the other ships were doing, except that USS Carney (DDG-64) and USS Gonzalez (DDG-66) were testing out DWES. USS Barry (DDG-52) gave an opportunity to use the latest Baseline 9 build and make sure Navy could do simultaneous engagements in the same raid-type scenario.

The difference between USS Carney (DDG-64) and USS Gonzalez (DDG-66) equipped with Aegis Baseline 4 and USS Barry (DDG-52) equipped with Baseline 9 is that the baseline 4 ships have a combination of the older UYK military-based and commercial off-the-shelf computers and rely on the ballistic signal processor functionality.

USS Barry (DDG-52) just received Baseline 9, which has the latest software configuration that brings an integrated air and missile defence capability to the ship. Baseline 9 also has the multi-mission signal processor, which is capable of conducting both air and BMD missions simultaneously. Aegis Baseline 9 has DWES capability built in. Additionally two cruisers, USS Lake Erie (CG-70) and USS Shiloh (CG-67), have DWES functionality.

The MDA will use test results to improve and enhance the Ballistic Missile Defense System and support the advancement of Phase 2 of the Phased Adaptive Approach for missile defense in Europe to provide protection of U.S. deployed forces and European allies and partners.

Gabrielle Giffords

The future USS Gabrielle Giffords (LCS-10), launched from the Austal USA shipyard February 25, marking an important production milestone for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program. The ship is named after former United States Representative Gabrielle Giffords. LCS-10 will be the 16th U.S. naval ship to be named for a woman, and only the 13th ship to be named for a living person since 1850.

Gabrielle Giffords posted a Twitter photo Thursday of the new U.S. Navy ship named after her
Gabrielle Giffords posted a Twitter photo Thursday of the new U.S. Navy ship named after her

«This third Independence variant ship of the block buy is the first ship constructed fully utilizing Austal’s LCS Modular Manufacturing Facility and is launching at the highest level of production completion to-date», said Capt. Tom Anderson, Littoral Combat Ship program manager, «a sign that facility investments are now paying off in schedule and cost performance».

Gabrielle Giffords was rolled out of her assembly bay onto a barge for transfer down the Mobile River to a floating drydock February 24. The new ship entered the water for the first time the following day when the drydock was flooded for the ship launch. The ship will return to the shipyard to continue final outfitting and activation until her christening later this year. She is expected to deliver to the fleet in 2017.

Gabrielle Giffords is the third ship in a block buy contract with Austal to build 10 Independence- variant LCS ships. Sister ship Jackson (LCS-6) is preparing for builder’s trials, and Montgomery (LCS-8) was christened in November 2014. The LCS program is ramping up in 2015 to deliver two ships per year from the Austal shipyard, as well as two Freedom-variant ships from the Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin.

The Navy is leveraging competition, fixed-price contracting and ongoing production efficiencies to reduce construction time and costs on littoral combat ships. Lessons learned from the lead ships have been incorporated into both Freedom-variant (odd-numbered) and Independence-variant (even-numbered) hulls.

PEO (Program Executive Offices) LCS is responsible for delivering and sustaining littoral mission capabilities to the fleet and is working with industry to increase production efficiencies and leverage cost savings to achieve steady serial production. Delivering high-quality warfighting assets while balancing affordability and capability is key to supporting the Navy’s Maritime Strategy.

Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was gravely wounded in an assassination attempt in 2011
Former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was gravely wounded in an assassination attempt in 2011

 

The Independence Variant of the LCS Class

 Principal dimensions

Construction:                            Hull and superstructure – aluminium alloy

Length overall:                          417 feet/127.1 m

Beam overall:                             103 feet/31.4 m

Hull draft (maximum):           14.8 feet/4.5 m

 

Payload and capacities

Complement:

Core Crew – 40

Mission crew – 36

Berthing:                                      76 in a mix of single, double & quad berthing compartments

Maximum mission load:      210 tonnes

Mission packages:                  ASW, SUW, MIW

 

Propulsion

Main engines:

2 × GE LM2500

2 × MTU 20V 8000

Waterjets:                                  4 × Wartsila steerable

Bow thruster:                           Retractable azimuthing

 

Performance

Speed:                                               40 knots/46 mph/74 km/h

Range:                                               3,500 NM/6,482 km

Operational limitation:           Survival in Sea State 8

 

Mission/Logistics deck

Deck area:                                    >21,527.8 feet2/2,000 m2

Launch and recovery:            Twin boom extending crane

Loading:

Side ramp

Internal elevator to hanger

 

Flight deck and hanger

Flight deck dimensions:         2 × SH-60 or 1 × CH-53

Hanger:                               Aircraft stowage & maintenance for 2 × SH-60

 

Weapons and sensors

Standard:

1 × 57-mm gun

4 × .50 caliber guns

1 × SAM launcher

3 × weapons modules

The littoral combat ship Independence (LCS 2) underway during builder's trials
The littoral combat ship Independence (LCS 2) underway during builder’s trials

Australian Weapon

The Boeing Joint Direct Attack Munition Extended Range (JDAM ER) demonstrated significant range increase while maintaining its expected accuracy during flight-testing conducted by Boeing and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

A guided bomb unit-54rests on the wing of a F-16 Fighting Falcon at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. The GBU-54 is the Air Force's newest 500-pound precision weapon, equipped with a special targeting system that uses a combination of Global Position System and laser guidance to accurately engage and destroy moving targets. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Christopher Boitz)
A guided bomb unit-54rests on the wing of a F-16 Fighting Falcon at Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan. The GBU-54 is the Air Force’s newest 500-pound precision weapon, equipped with a special targeting system that uses a combination of Global Position System and laser guidance to accurately engage and destroy moving targets. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Christopher Boitz)

The testing centered on a new wing kit that, when used in conjunction with the weapon’s guidance kit, increases the bomb’s range from approximately 15 miles (24 kilometers) to more than 45 miles (72 kilometers), as shown during tests above the Woomera Test Range in Australia.

«The JDAM ER wing kit takes advantage of the conventional JDAM aircraft interface and Small Diameter Bomb glide technology», said Beth Kluba, vice president, Boeing Weapons and Missile Systems. «This keeps integration, development and sustainment costs low while bringing customers the range increase needed to neutralize current and future threats».

The 500-pound (227-kilogram) winged JDAM, jointly developed by Boeing and Australia’s Defence Science and Technology Organisation, was dropped from RAAF F/A-18 Classic Hornets from altitudes ranging from 40,000 feet (12,190 meters) down to 10,000 feet (3,048 meters). The weapon deployed its wing kit successfully during each test and flew to a pre-determined aim point, impacting within meters of its target.

«The extended range wing kit will allow the Australian Defence Force to employ JDAM more flexibly and safely in the target area», said Rear Adm. Tony Dalton, responsible for the acquisition of Guided Weapons in Australia. «Additionally, the program also stands to significantly benefit local Australian industry».

Boeing will produce and integrate JDAM ER wing kits for the RAAF under a contract awarded in 2011. Following additional flight and certification testing, production and initial deliveries of JDAM ER to the RAAF are planned for 2015.

Ferra Engineering supplies major sub-assemblies for the JDAM ER modular wing kit to Boeing from its facility in Brisbane, Australia.

JDAM is a low-cost guidance kit that converts existing unguided bombs into near-precision weapons. Including the JDAM ER wing kit, Boeing designed JDAM technology to accept a variety of upgrades such as a laser sensor, improved immunity to GPS jamming, and an all-weather radar sensor. Boeing has built more than 260,000 JDAM tail kits in its Saint Charles, Missouri, facility since production started in 1998. JDAM is used by 27 international militaries.

Staff Sgts. Michael Jackson and Anthony Bagen align a 500-pound GBU-54 Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition before connecting it to an F-16 Fighting Falcon
Staff Sgts. Michael Jackson and Anthony Bagen align a 500-pound GBU-54 Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition before connecting it to an F-16 Fighting Falcon

 

Laser Joint Direct Attack Munition

Description and Purpose

The Laser Joint Attack Direct Munition (Laser JDAM) expands the capabilities of the Joint Direct Attack Munition (JDAM). JDAM is a low-cost guidance kit produced by Boeing that converts existing unguided free-fall bombs into near-precision guided «smart» weapons. The JDAM kit consists of a tail section that contains a Global Positioning System/Inertial Navigation System (GPS/INS) and body strakes for additional stability and lift.

Because of its modular design, an affordable laser sensor kit can easily be installed on an existing JDAM in the field within minutes. In addition to the outstanding all-weather GPS/INS capability that conventional JDAMs offer, Laser JDAM now adds the flexibility to prosecute targets of opportunity, including mobile and even maritime targets.

Customers

U.S. Navy, U.S. Air Force and six international countries use the laser sensor kit on their JDAMs.

F-15E-1 firing 4 JDAM missiles, with Edwards AFB markings
F-15E-1 firing 4 JDAM missiles, with Edwards AFB markings

General Characteristics

Currently, tail kit variants are integrated with the Mk-84 2,000-pound and BLU-109 2,000-pound (900-kg) warheads (GBU-31). Mk-83 1,000-pound (450-kg) (GBU-32) and Mk-82 500-pound (225-kg) warheads (GBU-38) are in production to deliver the cost-effective JDAM. When employed, these weapons have proven highly accurate and can be delivered in any flyable weather. JDAM can be launched from more than 15 miles (24 kilometers) from the target with updates from GPS satellites to help guide the weapon to the target. Laser JDAM has been integrated with the GBU-38. Follow-on integration with the GBU-31 and GBU-32 is planned.

Background

Laser JDAM is operational on U.S. Air Force F-15E and F-16 and U.S. Navy F/A-18 and A/V-8B platforms. Boeing completed the Laser JDAM development and testing cycle in less than 17 months, and delivered the first production Laser JDAMs to the U.S. Air Force in May 2008. Laser JDAM was successfully employed in combat in Iraq in August 2008. The U.S. Navy’s first Laser JDAMs were delivered in October 2008. In March 2010, the Navy selected Laser JDAM to satisfy its Direct Attack Moving Target Capability (DAMTC) requirement.

In September 2012, Boeing received a $22.7 million modification to an existing U.S. Navy contract for more than 2,300 Laser JDAM sensors, starting full-rate production in order to meet the Navy’s DAMTC program requirements.

Very accurate and highly reliable, JDAM can be delivered in virtually any weather condition
Very accurate and highly reliable, JDAM can be delivered in virtually any weather condition

TALON for a Tiger

The United Arab Emirates-made Nimr – Arabic for «Tiger» – armored vehicle could get a major firepower upgrade, under a pact between Raytheon and Abu Dhabi-based Nimr Automotive that would outfit the rugged four-wheeler with Laser-Guided Rockets (LGRs) previously found only on helicopters (Hydra-70) and other aircraft.

A Nimr armored vehicle fires a rocket equipped with the TALON guidance system in this artist's illustration
A Nimr armored vehicle fires a rocket equipped with the TALON guidance system in this artist’s illustration

The project to arm the Nimr with TALON rockets is the latest in a series of international partnerships that bring Raytheon’s advanced engineering and innovation to U.S. allies worldwide. The deal was announced at the International Defence Exhibition and Conference in Abu Dhabi (IDEX 2015).

«If you look at the world today, the countries we used to sell to, they’re not happy to buy products off the shelf any more», said Steven C. Schultz, director of business development for land warfare systems at Raytheon Missile Systems. «They want to be true partners in terms of co-production, co-development, and in many cases be the prime contractor for some of these international pursuits».

Nimr Automotive is part of a company owned by Tawazun, a United Arab Emirates (UAE) strategic investment firm. Raytheon and Tawazun previously partnered to develop TALON, which is used to modify older, unguided rockets into laser-seeking weapons.

TALON is a low-cost, digital semi-active laser guidance and control kit that is mounted directly to the front of legacy 2.75-inch Hydra-70 unguided rockets
TALON is a low-cost, digital semi-active laser guidance and control kit that is mounted directly to the front of legacy 2.75-inch Hydra-70 unguided rockets

Other recent international collaborations include:

  • A partnership with Abu Dhabi Ship Building that provided the United Arab Emirates Navy with the Rolling Airframe Missile (RAM) and the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missile (ESSM). RAM is a lightweight, self-guided missile that travels faster than the speed of sound. ESSM is the world’s premier international cooperative missile production program, with 18 industrial partners representing 10 nations.
  • An agreement that designated Turkish missile maker Roket Sanavii ve Ticaret A.S. as a supplier for Raytheon’s Patriot Guidance Enhanced Missile-Tactical (Patriot GEM-T). The company, also known as Roketsan, is the first major trans-Atlantic supplier for the system and is strategically located to support countries in Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
  • A $1.7 billion Direct Commercial Sales contract in Saudi Arabia to upgrade Patriot systems to the latest Configuration-3.
  • A partnership with Lockheed Martin to provide the United Arab Emirates with advanced Patriot air and missile defense, along with support and training.
  • The U.S. Army’s Warfighter Field Operations Customer Support contract, under which Raytheon trains helicopter pilots in Afghanistan. Students graduate as commercial-level pilots.
The UAE’s Nimr Automotive, Tawazun and Raytheon disclosed a project to arm the 6 X 6 version of the Nimr vehicle with the Raytheon-Tawazun Talon 70-mm laser-guided rocket
The UAE’s Nimr Automotive, Tawazun and Raytheon disclosed a project to arm the 6 X 6 version of the Nimr vehicle with the Raytheon-Tawazun Talon 70-mm laser-guided rocket

Bringing TALON to the Nimr vehicle will meet a critical need, should the UAE Armed Forces adopt the system, Schultz said.

«TALON fills a gap between heavy, expensive, anti-tank guided missiles and unguided rockets», Schultz said. «There are a lot of missions for something like TALON. That’s the niche we’re filling».

A launcher fires a rocket equipped with the TALON guidance system
A launcher fires a rocket equipped with the TALON guidance system

 

TALON Laser-Guided Rocket

The weapon integrates Raytheon’s extensive experience in digital semiactive laser technology and proven history in precision air-to-air and air-to-ground munitions development and production. TALON’s architecture and ease of employment make it a low-cost, highly-precise weapon for missions in urban environments, counterinsurgency and swarming boat defense missions.

TALON is certified for use on U.S. Army Apache helicopters and Apaches in international fleets needing an affordable upgrade to the Hydra-70 rocket.

TALON was codeveloped with the United Arab Emirates.

TALON is fully compatible with existing airborne and ground laser designators.

TALON requires no hardware or software modifications to the launcher or aircraft platform and can be deployed from any aircraft that fires 2.75-inch (70-mm) Hydra-70 unguided rockets using the standard M260/261 launchers.

 

TALON is a low-cost, semi-active laser guidance and control kit that connects directly to the front of 2.75-inch (70-mm) Hydra-70 unguided rockets currently in U.S. and international inventories

 

Tactical Ambulance

Oshkosh Defense, LLC, an Oshkosh Corporation company, introduced its MRAP (Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected) All-Terrain Vehicle (M-ATV) Extended Wheel Base Medical (EXM) variant at the International Defense Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) 2015, taking place February 22-26 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Oshkosh designed the M-ATV EXM to provide off-road mobility and MRAP-level protection to military medics on ambulatory missions in high-threat environments.

Dual-rear hatches minimize a medic’s exposure to threats, and the efficient litter assist system allows patients to be secured and loaded in less than two minutes
Dual-rear hatches minimize a medic’s exposure to threats, and the efficient litter assist system allows patients to be secured and loaded in less than two minutes

«There is no mission more important than keeping troops safe, including the medics and their patients on the battlefield», said U.S. Army Major General (Retired) John Urias, executive vice president of Oshkosh Corporation and president of Oshkosh Defense. «An increasing number of troops and medics are suffering injuries – often life threatening – while trying to deliver care and evacuate the injured in commercial-based ambulances. The Oshkosh M-ATV EXM combines best-in-class off-road mobility with a life-saving crew protection system for urgent medical care in landscapes that are too rugged for other ambulances».

The Oshkosh Defense M-ATV EXM provides urgent evacuation capabilities while shielding patients and medics from enemy fire. The M-ATV’s lightweight ramp and unique «easy glide» system can load two litter-bound patients – on any NATO-standard litter – in less than two minutes. The tactical ambulance has enough interior capacity to simultaneously transport two litter-bound patients, two ambulatory patients, a medic, commander and driver. The M-ATV EXM’s customizable internal configuration also enables equipment to be accessed quickly by a centrally positioned medic. The vehicle supports standard MRAP Medical Equipment Sets (MES) and requirements such as a universal mounting system, secured storage units, and Pouch Attachment Ladder System (PALS) mounted storage bags.

The M-ATV EXM is a variant of the Oshkosh Defense M-ATV Family of Vehicles, which includes two multi-mission models – the M-ATV Standard and M-ATV Extended. The M-ATV Standard model provides response and support capabilities for a range of offensive and defensive missions in off-road environments, and the M-ATV Extended model delivers increased capacity for additional troops and equipment to support multiple mission profiles. M-ATV EXM delivers gold-standard off-road mobility and optimal protection against Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and other battlefield threats. Oshkosh’s proprietary TAK-4 independent suspension system provides superior ride quality, including a smoother drive in rough terrain to enable better patient care and preserve the longevity of medical equipment. The M-ATV’s crew protection system is designed for today’s most prevalent threats and can be customized to deliver the highest standards of MRAP-level protection. Furthermore, the M-ATV EXM’s silhouette is the same as the other M-ATV Extended Wheel Base variants, which prevents it from standing out as an obvious target in theater.

The M-ATV EXM is a fully functional ambulance with a flexible work area for a full suite of medical equipment and ample room to effectively treat patients
The M-ATV EXM is a fully functional ambulance with a flexible work area for a full suite of medical equipment and ample room to effectively treat patients

 

Oshkosh M-ATV EXM

Mission enablers

Purpose-built military ambulance with complete access to patients and medical equipment.

Fully customizable design for medical equipment.

MRAP-level protection and unmatched mobility for medical evacuation operations.

 

Features

  • Fully protected, single compartment crew capsule
  • Integrated blast protection
  • TAK-4 independent suspension system
  • Accommodates two crew members, one medic, two ambulatory patients and two litter-bound patients
  • Centrally positioned medic with easy access to patients and medical equipment
  • Vinyl floor covering in medic area is easy to clean and sanitize
  • Customizable work area supports standard MRAP Medical Equipment Sets (MES) with a universal mounting system
  • Dual-rear hatches with mechanical spring assist reduces opening size and minimizes load and close procedures
  • Loading ramp with forward locking mechanism glides and secures any NATO-standard litter into position
  • Complete all load, secure and close procedures for both litters in less than two minutes
  • Similar silhouette to other M-ATV Extended Wheelbase variants reduces the risk of medic crews becoming targets
  • Underbody Improvement Kit (UIK) integrated into EXM design
  • Optional Oshkosh-provided Gunner Protection Kit (GPK)
M-ATV Extended Wheel Base is designed with an extended wheelbase that delivers more capacity while maintaining high levels of protection, performance and agility to achieve the mission
M-ATV Extended Wheel Base is designed with an extended wheelbase that delivers more capacity while maintaining high levels of protection, performance and agility to achieve the mission

 

General Characteristics

Engine:                                             Caterpillar C7, 7.2 L, 276 kW, 1254-N-m

Transmission:                              Allison 3500 SP/6-speed automatic

Transfer Case:                             2-speed, full time 4-wheel drive with locking differential

Axles/Suspension:                     Oshkosh TAK-4 independent suspension system

Tires:                                                 16.00R20

Seating Capacity:                       7 soldiers (5 seated troops and 2 litter-bound patients)

Vehicle Curb Weight:              16,500 kg/36,300 lbs

Payload Capacity:                      2,000 kg/4,400 lbs

OGPK (Objective Gunners Protective Kit) Turret-Ready: Turret ring and gunner sling with 360° rotation

Suspension (Durability) Profile:        70% off-road/30% on-road

CTIS (Central Tire Inflation System):        2 channel system • 4 terrain settings with integrated driveline lock-up control

 

 

155 Successful
Test Flights

The U.S. Navy conducted successful test flights February 22 of two Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missiles built by Lockheed Martin. This brings the D5 missile’s record to 155 successful test flights since design completion in 1989, a 25-year-plus reliability record unmatched by any other large ballistic missile.

The Mark 5 MIRV can carry up to 14 W88 (475 kt) warheads
The Mark 5 MIRV can carry up to 14 W88 (475 kt) warheads

«These latest test flights demonstrate the reliability of the D5 missile and the readiness of the entire Trident Strategic Weapon System every minute of every day», said Mat Joyce, vice president of Fleet Ballistic Missile programs and deputy for Strategic & Missile Defense Systems, Lockheed Martin Space Systems. «The Navy program office, the submarine crews and the industry team never rest to ensure the safety, security and performance of this crucial deterrence system».

The Navy launched the unarmed missiles in the Pacific Ocean from a submerged Ohio-class submarine. The missiles were converted into test configurations using kits produced by Lockheed Martin that contain range safety devices and flight telemetry instrumentation.

The Trident II Strategic Weapons System is an improved Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile with greater accuracy, payload, and range than the Trident C-4
The Trident II Strategic Weapons System is an improved Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile with greater accuracy, payload, and range than the Trident C-4

The Navy conducts a continuing series of operational system evaluation tests of the Trident Strategic Weapon System, which is the sea-based element of the nation’s nuclear deterrent triad, under the testing guidelines of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

First deployed in 1990, the D5 missile is aboard U.S. Navy Ohio-class and U.K. Royal Navy Vanguard-class submarines. The three-stage ballistic missile can travel a nominal range of 4,000 nautical miles (7,408 kilometers) and carries multiple independently targeted reentry bodies.

Trident II missiles are carried by 14 US Ohio and 4 British Vanguard-class submarines, with 24 missiles on each Ohio class and 16 missiles on each Vanguard class
Trident II missiles are carried by 14 US Ohio and 4 British Vanguard-class submarines, with 24 missiles on each Ohio class and 16 missiles on each Vanguard class

 

Trident II D5 Fleet Ballistic Missile (FBM)

The Trident II D5 is the latest generation of the U.S. Navy’s submarine-launched fleet ballistic missiles, following the highly successful Polaris, Poseidon, and Trident I C4 programs. First deployed in 1990, the Trident II D5 missile is currently aboard Ohio-class and British Vanguard-class submarines. Each missile weighs approximately 130,000 pounds (58,967 kilograms).

Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company, the Navy’s Trident missile prime contractor, developed and produced the missile and support equipment. The company also supplies technical and logistical support at sites where the missiles are deployed.

Maximum speed: approximately 18,030 mph/29,020 km/h/Mach 24
Maximum speed: approximately 18,030 mph/29,020 km/h/Mach 24

The FBM team continues to build on a remarkable mission success track record. Through June 2014, the Trident II D5 missile has achieved 150 successful test flights since design completion in 1989 – a record unmatched by any other large ballistic missile or space launch vehicle.

The first Fleet Ballistic Missile (FBM) developed and deployed by the United States was the Polaris A1 missile, named for the North Star. A two-stage ballistic missile with a range of 1,200 nautical miles (2,222 kilometers), the A1 was powered by solid fuel rocket motors and guided by a self-contained inertial guidance system independent of external commands or control. The A1’s first successful underwater launch from a submarine on July 20, 1960, brought to fruition a remarkable Navy and industry research and development effort begun only four years earlier. Subsequent Polaris missiles, the A2 and A3, increased the range and thus the operating area of the stealthy deterrent. U.S. deployment of the Polaris missile series ended with the retirement of the A3 in 1979.

The Trident II is a three-stage rocket, each stage containing a Solid-fuel rocket motor
The Trident II is a three-stage rocket, each stage containing a Solid-fuel rocket motor

The next generation of fleet ballistic missiles to follow Polaris was the Poseidon C3 missile. The Poseidon, despite being 20 inches (508 mm) wider in diameter, 36 inches (914 mm) longer and approximately 30,000 pounds (13,608 kilograms) heavier, fit into the same 16 launch tubes that carried Polaris. Poseidon carried twice the payload of the Polaris A3 with significantly improved accuracy. The first Poseidon test launch occurred on August 16, 1968. The first submarine-based test launch occurred on August 3, 1970, from USS James Madison (SSBN-627). The Poseidon was declared operational on March 31, 1971, and was deployed aboard all 31 Lafayette Class submarines.

The Trident I C4 missiles were the longest continuously operated Fleet Ballistic Missiles ever deployed by the U.S. Navy. Using advanced technology in propellants, micro-electronics and new weight-saving materials, the Trident I C4 missile incorporated the multiple independently-targeted vehicle capability of its predecessor Poseidon and provided an astounding range of more than 4,000 nautical miles (7,408 kilometers) with a full payload.

Extended Range
AMRAAM

Raytheon Company has begun development on an extended range variant of the combat-proven Advanced Medium Range Air to Air Missile (AMRAAM). Designed specifically for ground-based air defense, AMRAAM-ER will enable intercepts at longer range and higher altitudes (Source: Raytheon Company).

NASAMS is a highly adaptable medium range solution for any operational air defense requirement. The system provides the air defender with a tailorable, state-of-the-art defense system that can maximize their ability to quickly identify, engage and destroy current and evolving enemy aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicle or emerging cruise missile threats
NASAMS is a highly adaptable medium range solution for any operational air defense requirement. The system provides the air defender with a tailorable, state-of-the-art defense system that can maximize their ability to quickly identify, engage and destroy current and evolving enemy aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicle or emerging cruise missile threats

«With AMRAAM-ER, Raytheon is rewriting the book on ground-based air defense. The new missile will be even faster and more maneuverable than the current AMRAAM», said Mike Jarrett, Raytheon vice president of Air Warfare Systems. «By leveraging many existing AMRAAM components, Raytheon can deliver AMRAAM-ER quickly and affordably with very low risk».

Raytheon will integrate AMRAAM-ER into the NASAMS (Norwegian Advanced Surface to Air Missile System) launcher.

Designed specifically for ground-based air defense, AMRAAM-ER will enable intercepts at longer distances and higher altitudes
Designed specifically for ground-based air defense, AMRAAM-ER will enable intercepts at longer distances and higher altitudes

NASAMS is the latest and most modern Medium Range Air Defense system. In partnership with Kongsberg, Raytheon has delivered more than 70 fire units to seven countries. It is the most commonly used Short and Medium Range Air Defense System in NATO.

«Combined with the NASAMS launcher, AMRAAM-ER will provide a new level of protection to customers», said Ralph Acaba, vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense at Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems business. «NASAMS is one of the most easily manned, trained, and maintained systems in the world».

Combined with the NASAMS launcher, AMRAAM-ER will provide a new level of protection
Combined with the NASAMS launcher, AMRAAM-ER will provide a new level of protection

Fielded in Norway for more than a decade, NASAMS is operationally deployed in the U.S. National Capital Region, Spain, Finland, the Netherlands, and an undisclosed country. It is also in production for Oman under a contract received last year.

Raytheon plans to flight test AMRAAM-ER before the end of the year.

 

The AMRAAM is a versatile and proven weapon with operational flexibility in a wide variety of scenarios, including air-to-air and surface-launch engagements. In the surface launch role, AMRAAM is the baseline weapon on the NASAMS launcher.

 

Sale to Slovakia

The State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to Slovakia for UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters and associated equipment, parts and logistical support for an estimated cost of $450 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on February 18, 2015.

A UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter sits on the flight line of Hunter Army Airfield June 10, where 3rd Combat Aviation pilots are training on the newly-fielded equipment
A UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter sits on the flight line of Hunter Army Airfield June 10, where 3rd Combat Aviation pilots are training on the newly-fielded equipment

The Government of Slovakia has requested a possible sale of:

  • 9 UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopters in standard U.S. Government configuration with designated unique equipment and Government Furnished Equipment (GFE);
  • 20 T700-GE-701D Engines (18 installed and 2 spares);
  • 20 Embedded Global Positioning Systems/Inertial Navigation Systems;
  • 2 Aviation Mission Planning Systems;
  • 1 Aviation Ground Power Unit;
  • 11 AN/APX-123 Identification Friend or Foe Transponders;
  • 20 Very High Frequency (VHF)/Digitally Selective Calling AN/ARC-231 radios;
  • 11 ARN-147 VHF Omni Ranging/Instrument Landing System (VOR/ILS);
  • 11 AN/ARN-153 Tactical Air Navigation Systems;
  • 11 AN/ARC-201D Single Channel Ground and Airborne Radio Systems radios.

Also included are aircraft warranty, ammunition, air worthiness support, facility construction, spare and repair parts, support equipment, communication equipment, publications and technical documentation, personnel training and training equipment, site surveys, tool and test equipment, U.S. Government and contractor technical and logistics support services, and other related element of program and logistics support. The estimated cost is $450 million.

This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a NATO ally.

General Characteristics
General Characteristics

The proposed sale will improve Slovakia’s capability to deter regional threats and strengthen its homeland defense, as well as support counter-terrorism operations. The sale of these UH-60 helicopters will bolster Slovakia’s ability to provide border patrol, rapid reaction, and field expedient firefighting capability for its air and ground forces in counter-terrorism, border security, and humanitarian operations. Slovakia will have no difficulty absorbing these helicopters into its armed forces.

According to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the proposed sale of this equipment and support will not alter the basic military balance in the region.

The principal contractors will be the Sikorsky Aircraft Company in Stratford, Connecticut; and General Electric Aircraft Company in Lynn, Massachusetts. There are no known offset agreements in connection with this potential sale.

Implementation of this proposed sale may require the assignment of an additional three U.S. Government and five contractor representatives in Slovakia to support the delivery and training for approximately two-five years.

There will be no adverse impact on U.S. defense readiness as a result of this proposed sale.

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

The crew of a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter from 2nd Battalion (Assault), 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, Task Force Falcon, wait as a petroleum supply specialist assigned to E Company, 2nd Battalion (Assault), 10th Combat Aviation Brigade refuels their helicopter Aug. 20, at forward Operating Base Shank, Afghanistan
The crew of a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter from 2nd Battalion (Assault), 10th Combat Aviation Brigade, Task Force Falcon, wait as a petroleum supply specialist assigned to E Company, 2nd Battalion (Assault), 10th Combat Aviation Brigade refuels their helicopter Aug. 20, at forward Operating Base Shank, Afghanistan

 

UH-60M Black Hawk Helicopter

The UH-60M helicopter culminates more than 30 years of technological advancement, improved performance and real world experience. This advanced Black Hawk aircraft serves dependably in the most extreme conditions found on earth. With the integration of the U.S. Army’s Future Combat Systems and automated aircraft health monitoring, the UH-60M provides superior vertical lift and is the «intelligent» choice for the battlefield of tomorrow.

 

General Characteristics

Primary Function:   Personnel recovery in hostile conditions and military operations other than war in day, night or marginal weather

Contractor:                 United Technologies/Sikorsky Aircraft Company

Length:                           64 feet 8 in/17.1 m

Height:                           16 feet 8 in/4.4 m

Rotor Diameter:       53 feet 7 in/14.1 m

Fuel Capacity:            4,500 pounds/2,041 kg

Payload:                         depends upon mission

Armament:                   Two 7.62-mm or .50 caliber machineguns

Crew:                               2 pilots, 1 flight engineer and 1 gunner

Initial operating capability:                            1982

Unit Cost:                      $40.1 million

Inventory:                     Active force, 67; ANG, 17; Reserve, 15

 

Powerplant and fuel system

Number of Engines:                                  2

Engine Type:                                                 T700-GE-701D

Maximum Take Off:                                 3,988 shp/2,974 kW

OEI Shaft horsepower (30 sec):        1,940 shp/1,447 kW

 

Capabilities

Crew @ total weight:                               4 @ 980 lbs/444.5 kg

Troops @ weight/each:                          11 @ 290 lbs/131.5 kg

Cargo hook capacity:                              9,000 lbs/4082 kg

UH-60M Blackhawk helicopters await their turn to takeoff from Simmons Army Airfield, Sept. 17, for the final evaluation flight certifying 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade pilots to fly the aircraft
UH-60M Blackhawk helicopters await their turn to takeoff from Simmons Army Airfield, Sept. 17, for the final evaluation flight certifying 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade pilots to fly the aircraft

 

Performance

Weight empty:                                            12,511 lbs/5,675 kg

Primary mission gross weight:          19,398 lbs/8,799 kg

Maximum Gross Weight:                     22,000 lbs/9,979 kg

Maximum Cruise Speed*:                    151 knots/174 mph/280 km/h

Maximum Range – No Reserve:      276 NM/317.5 miles/511 km

Vertical Rate of Climb, feet per minute

16,800 lbs/7,620 kg, 4000 feet/1,219 m, 95°F, 95% IRP**:                       1,553

18,000 lbs/8,165 kg, 4000 feet/1,219 m, 95°F, 95% IRP**:                       941

HIGE*** Ceiling:                                        10,520 feet/3,206 m

HOGE**** Ceiling:                                    6,010 feet/1,831 m

OEI***** Service Ceiling:                      6,500 feet/1,981 m

AEO****** Service Ceiling:                  15,180 feet/4,626 m

* 16,800 lbs/7,620 kg, 4,000 feet/1,219 m, 95°F @ 100% MCP (Mode Control Panel)

** Intermediate Rated Power

*** Hovering In Ground Effect

**** Hovering Out of Ground Effect

***** One Engine Inoperative

****** All Engines Operating

 

Accommodations

Cabin Length:                                               12.6 feet/3.8 m

Cabin Width:                                                 7.7 feet/2.3 m

Cabin Height:                                                4.5 feet/1.3 m

Cabin Area:                                                    88 feet2/8.1 m2

Cabin Volume:                                              396 feet3/11.2 m3

Baggage Volume:                                        20 feet3/0.5 m3

A UH-60 Black Hawk assists in airborne operations on June 22, 2014, near Adazi Training Area. Approximately 600 paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade have been deployed to Poland, Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia to conduct expanded land force training by demonstrating their commitment to NATO objectives of sustaining interoperability between allied forces (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. Sara Marchus, 116 Public Affairs Detachment/ Released)
A UH-60 Black Hawk assists in airborne operations on June 22, 2014, near Adazi Training Area. Approximately 600 paratroopers from the 173rd Airborne Brigade have been deployed to Poland, Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia to conduct expanded land force training by demonstrating their commitment to NATO objectives of sustaining interoperability between allied forces (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. Sara Marchus, 116 Public Affairs Detachment/ Released)

 

Airframe

  • Machined cabin structure
  • Multi-functional and durable 300 psi cabin flooring
  • Crashworthy Pilot and co-Pilot seats
  • Two sliding cargo doors with pop-out egress windows
  • Two jettisonable cockpit doors
  • Three point dual OLEO landing gear with kneeling capability
  • Active vibration control system
  • Wire strike protection system
  • Integrated Vehicle Health Management System (IVHMS)
  • Foldable tail pylon for shipping and storage
  • Built-in work platforms, engine cowlings and hydraulic deck
  • Foldable stabilator

 

Cockpit

  • Four-axis fully coupled flight director
  • Digital map
  • Dual embedded global positioning
  • Integrated stormscope
  • Two UHF/VHF AM/FM radios
  • Five digital ICS stations
  • Automatic direction finder
  • VOR/ILS (VHF Omni Ranging/Instrument Landing System)
  • Dual digital flight control computer
Cockpit
Cockpit

 

Powerplant and fuel system

  • Two T700-GE701D engines
  • Auxiliary power unit
  • Dual crashworthy and self-sealing fuel tanks, 360 gallons/1362.75 L
  • Left and right gravity refuel ports
  • Single point for close circuit and pressure refueling

 

Rotor and drive system

  • Improved durability gearbox
  • Four wide-chord composite blades
  • Foldable main and tail rotor blades
  • Dual redundant and isolated flight controls
  • Rotor de-icing provisions

 

Electrical

  • Retractable landing light
  • Controllable searchlight
  • NVG (Night Vision) compatible formation lights
  • Portable maintenance light with three receptacles
U.S. Soldiers with the 1st Battalion, 143rd Infantry Regiment, Texas Army National Guard, take off in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, waving to family and friends, at Camp Swift, Texas, Sept. 7, 2013. The exercise was part of the unit's family day and the unit's participation in the Paratrooper and Special Olympics event (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Spc. Michael Giles/Released)
U.S. Soldiers with the 1st Battalion, 143rd Infantry Regiment, Texas Army National Guard, take off in a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter, waving to family and friends, at Camp Swift, Texas, Sept. 7, 2013. The exercise was part of the unit’s family day and the unit’s participation in the Paratrooper and Special Olympics event (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Spc. Michael Giles/Released)

Third flight test

The Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) built by Lockheed Martin achieved a third successful air-launched flight test, with the missile performing as expected during low altitude flight. The test, conducted on February 4, was in support of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy joint-service LRASM program.

Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for the DARPA/ONR funded Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) program that is developing both an air- and surface-launch compatible anti-ship missile that will provide OASuW capabilities
Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for the DARPA/ONR funded Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) program that is developing both an air- and surface-launch compatible anti-ship missile that will provide OASuW capabilities

Flying over the Sea Range at Point Mugu, California, a U.S. Air Force Rockwell B-1B Lancer bomber from the 337th Test and Evaluation Squadron at Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, released the LRASM prototype, which navigated through planned waypoints receiving in-flight targeting updates from the weapon data link.

«LRASM continues to prove its maturity and capabilities in this flight test program», said Mike Fleming, LRASM air launch program director at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control. «This much-needed weapon seeks to provide a new capability that would enable deep strike in previously denied battle environments».

LRASM is a precision-guided anti-ship standoff missile leveraging the successful Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile Extended Range (JASSM-ER) heritage, and is designed to meet the needs of U.S. Navy and Air Force warfighters in a robust anti-access/area-denial threat environment. JASSM-ER, which recently completed its operational test program, provides a significant number of parts and assembly-process synergies with LRASM, resulting in cost savings for the U.S. Navy and Air Force Offensive Anti-Surface Warfare programs.

The tactically representative LRASM is built on the same award-winning production line in Pike County, Alabama, as JASSM-ER, demonstrating manufacturing and technology readiness levels sufficient to enter the engineering, manufacturing and development phase and to meet urgent operational needs.

LRASM launched from a Rockwell B-1B Lancer attacks a maritime ship target during flight-testing (Photo courtesy of DARPA)
LRASM launched from a Rockwell B-1B Lancer attacks a maritime ship target during flight-testing (Photo courtesy of DARPA)

 

LRASM

Long Range Anti-Ship Missile is a new generation weapon system for Air- and Ship-Launched Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW). LRASM is a precision-guided anti-ship standoff missile leveraging of the successful JASSM-ER heritage, and is designed to meet the needs of U.S. Navy and Air Force warfighters. Armed with a penetrator and blast fragmentation warhead, LRASM employs semi-autonomous guidance, day or night in all weather conditions. The missile employs a multi-modal sensor suite, weapon data link, and enhanced digital anti-jam Global Positioning System (GPS) to detect and destroy specific targets within a group of numerous ships at sea.

 

Background

Lockheed Martin is executing a LRASM contract, funded by DARPA and the U.S. Navy, to demonstrate tactically-relevant prototypes of a next generation anti-surface warfare weapon that can be either air or surface launched. The long-range capability of LRASM will enable target engagement from well outside the range of direct counter-fire weapons. LRASM will also employ enhanced survivability features to penetrate advanced integrated air defense systems. The combination of range, survivability, and lethality ensures mission success.

LRASM technology will reduce dependence on ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) platforms, network links, and GPS navigation in aggressive electronic warfare environments. The semi-autonomous guidance capability gets LRASM safely to the enemy area, where the weapon can use gross target cueing data to find and destroy its pre-determined target in denied environments. Precision lethality against surface targets ensures LRASM will become an important addition to the Warfighter’s arsenal.

Lockheed Martin Corporation has invested $30 million into the shipboard integration effort, to be worked in partnership with LM Mission Systems and Sensors who is responsible for the Mk-41 VLS (Vertical Launching System) integration of the missile, and IS&GS who will be working the weapon control system integration (Photo courtesy of LM)
Lockheed Martin Corporation has invested $30 million into the shipboard integration effort, to be worked in partnership with LM Mission Systems and Sensors who is responsible for the Mk-41 VLS (Vertical Launching System) integration of the missile, and IS&GS who will be working the weapon control system integration (Photo courtesy of LM)

 

Specifications

Approach: Autonomous sensing and dynamic routing coupled with advanced signature control

Speed: Subsonic

Seeker: Multi-mode

Warhead: 1,000-pound penetrating blast fragmentation

 

Features

Engagement from well outside direct counter-fire ranges

High probabilities of target kill

LRASM prototypes demonstrated tactically relevant system maturity during flight tests in 2013

Rapid transition to meet Warfighter needs for ASuW weapon capability

 

Indian Navy

It said in The Times of India that in a major step towards building a formidable blue-water Navy for the future, the Modi government has cleared the indigenous construction of seven stealth frigates and six nuclear-powered attack submarines, which together will cost well upwards of Rs 1 lakh crore ($16.1 billion).

The Project 17A is a follow-on of the Project 17 Shivalik-class frigate for the Indian Navy
The Project 17A is a follow-on of the Project 17 Shivalik-class frigate for the Indian Navy

The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) took these decisions in tune with the «critical necessity» for India to bolster its «overall deterrence capability» in the entire Indian Ocean Region (IOR), especially its primary area of strategic interest stretching from the Persian Gulf to Malacca Strait.

Under the over Rs 50,000 crore «Project-17A» for stealth frigates, four will be constructed at Mazagon Docks Limited (MDL) in Mumbai and three in Garden Reach Shipbuilders and Engineers (GRSE) in Kolkata. «The contract will be inked with MDL and GRSE this month itself, with an initial payment of Rs 4,000 crore», said a source.

Both the defence shipyards are already geared up for the project because it’s a «follow-on» to the three 6,100-tonne stealth frigates built by MDL, INS Shivalik, INS Satpura and INS Sahyadari, which were inducted in 2010-2012.

The new multi-mission frigates will be larger, faster and stealthier than the Shivaliks as well as packed with more weapons and sensors to operate in «a multi-threat environment». Nevertheless, it could well take a decade, if not more, to build all the seven frigates.

The complex project for the nuclear-powered submarines (SSNs) will take longer. After the CCS approval, technical parameters or Naval Staff Qualitative Requirements (NSQRs) will now be drafted for the over 6,000-tonne submarines.

INS Shivalik is the lead ship of her class of stealth multi-role frigates built for the Indian Navy
INS Shivalik is the lead ship of her class of stealth multi-role frigates built for the Indian Navy

The SSNs are likely to be constructed at the secretive Ship-Building Centre (SBC) in Vizag, where India’s first three SSBNs (nuclear-powered submarines with nuclear ballistic missiles) are being built to complete the country’s nuclear weapons triad.

The government has basically «reworked» the 30-year diesel-electric submarine-building plan, approved by the CCS in 1999, which envisaged induction of 12 new conventional submarines by 2012, followed by another dozen by 2030. However, with no new submarine inducted until now, the government has decided to go in for six SSNs and 18 conventional vessels, said sources.

Nuclear-powered submarines are much deadlier than diesel-electric submarines since they do not need to surface every few days to get oxygen to recharge their batteries. «SSNs, which usually carry only conventional missiles, can swiftly and quietly undertake long-range patrols. They can run at high speeds like 30 knots (34.5 mph/55.5 km/h) for much longer distances, hunting for targets and gathering intelligence», said an expert.

INS Chakra, the nuclear-powered Akula-II class SSN taken on a 10-year lease from Russia, may not be armed with long-range missiles due to international treaties, but has bolstered India’s depleting underwater combat arm that is currently grappling with just 13 ageing conventional diesel-electric submarines.

Armed with 300-km (162 NM/186 miles) range Klub-S land-attack cruise missiles and advanced torpedoes, INS Chakra can be a potent «hunter-killer» of enemy submarines and warships as well as provide effective protection to a fleet at sea.

INS Chakra, the nuclear-powered submarine taken on a 10-year lease from Russia
INS Chakra, the nuclear-powered submarine taken on a 10-year lease from Russia