ASRAAM for F-35B

MBDA has commenced deliveries of a quantity of Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missiles (ASRAAM) for the forthcoming integration of this infra-red air dominance missile onto the UK’s F-35B. The first missile was delivered to the U.S. during January 2016 in conjunction with BAE Systems (the UK’s F-35B weapon integration lead). ASRAAM will be the first UK missile to arm the F-35B and its integration within the F-35B System Development and Demonstration (SDD) phase of the programme will give the Royal Air Force (RAF) and the Royal Navy’s F-35s a highly capable, passive, Within Visual Range air-to-air capability.

MBDA delivers ASRAAM missiles for F-35 integration
MBDA delivers ASRAAM missiles for F-35 integration

British Defence Minister Philip Dunne welcomed the news from MBDA saying: «The upcoming work to integrate the MBDA Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile onto the F-35 Lightning aircraft will provide a state of the art weapon for both our RAF and Royal Navy pilots. The integration of this missile also demonstrates the success of the UK Defence industry’s contribution to the wider F-35 programme. Around 15% in value of every F-35 is being built here in the UK and the work is invaluable to British industry, supporting thousands of jobs across the UK».

These test missiles will be used during 2016 for a series of flight trials and air-launched firings that are a key step towards the Initial Operating Capability (IOC) of the aircraft by the UK. The trials will include environmental data gathering, safe separation from the aircraft, weapon integration with the F-35’s on-board systems, and lastly, weapon firing trials involving the engagement of targets. These integration activities will take place at both the Naval Air Station Patuxent River and Edwards Air Force base in the USA.

 

Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile

ASRAAM is the Advanced Short Range Air-to-Air Missile in service with the RAF on the Tornado and Typhoon, the Royal Australian Air Force on the F/A-18 Hornet and on order for the Indian Air Force’s Jaguars.

The missile flies at over Mach 3 and its sleek, agile airframe, powerful motor, sophisticated seeker and software are designed to defeat current and future countermeasures.

With a significant presence in five European countries and the USA, in 2014 MBDA achieved a turnover of 2.4 billion Euros ($2.6 billion) with an order book of 12.6 billion Euros ($14 billion). With more than 90 armed forces customers in the world, MBDA is a world leader in missiles and missile systems.

MBDA is the only European group capable of designing and producing missiles and missile systems that correspond to the full range of current and future operational needs of the three armed forces (land, sea and air). In total, the group offers a range of 45 missile systems and countermeasures products already in operational service and more than 15 others currently in development.

MBDA is jointly held by Airbus Group (37.5%), BAE Systems (37.5%), and Finmeccanica (25%).

Polish defense

Turkish Aerospace Industries, Inc. (TAI), Turkey’s center of excellence in defence and aerospace industries and Polska Grupa Zbrojeniowa (PGZ), one of the largest defence groups in Europe comprising over 60 companies held a workshop on February 3rd, 2016 in Radom with 15 Turkish-Polish Defence Industry companies, regarding the possible cooperation on KRUK Combat Helicopter Procurement Program of the Polish Armament Inspectorate.

Turkey’s TAI has teamed with Poland’s PGZ group to compete with its T129 ATAK combat helicopter, a variant of AgustaWestland’s A-129 Mangusta, for the Polish KRUK combat helicopter program (TAI photo)
Turkey’s TAI has teamed with Poland’s PGZ group to compete with its T129 ATAK combat helicopter, a variant of AgustaWestland’s A-129 Mangusta, for the Polish KRUK combat helicopter program (TAI photo)

With long experience in merging and integrating the capabilities of local and global companies, TAI is now exploring the opportunity to cooperate with Polish companies with unique and exclusive qualifications in order to bring the already proven capabilities of the «T129 ATAK Multi-Role Combat Helicopter» to new heights, through the KRUK Program. As indicated and underlined repeatedly by TAI and several Turkish Defense Industry company representatives from the outset of the KRUK Program, TAI is ready to fine tune its combat proven T129 ATAK Helicopter platform to satisfy the specific requirements of the Polish end-user, through integrating distinguished Polish suppliers into its supply chain.

TAI has accumulated a vast level of experience in working on advanced defence projects with global players. From the very beginning of involvement in Poland, TAI ensures that cooperation with the PGZ Group into KRUK Program or other common projects will be focused on maximizing the benefits for the Polish defense and industry.

TAI is a global player in defence and aerospace industries through its capabilities in design, development, modernization, manufacturing, integration and life cycle support of integrated aerospace systems, from fixed and rotary wing air platforms to Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and space systems. The widespread product and activity range of TAI is an indication that this newly blossoming cooperation between TAI and Polish industry will not be limited to the KRUK Program. It will be a sustainable, long-term win-win relationship in which all parties will find opportunities to advance their business goals in local and global markets in the medium run.

PGZ is pursuing a strategy to develop the highest capabilities of the Polish Defence Industry as well as its competitiveness on global markets. Through the passion and vision to become a leading manufacturer of high-technology equipment, PGZ is proved to be a strong business partner in Poland by forming a base for key competencies across the group’s 60+ companies and its 17,500 workforce.

The T129 ATAK Advanced Attack and Tactical Reconnaissance Helicopter is a candidate for the KRUK Program of the Polish Armed Forces
The T129 ATAK Advanced Attack and Tactical Reconnaissance Helicopter is a candidate for the KRUK Program of the Polish Armed Forces

 

T129 ATAK advanced attack helicopter

T129 ATAK is a new generation, tandem two-seat, twin-engine helicopter specifically designed for attack and reconnaissance purposes. T129 ATAK, developed from the combat proven AgustaWestland A129CBT, incorporates totally new system philosophy with new engines (LHTEC CTS 800-4A), new avionics, visionics and weapons, modified airframe, uprated drive train and new tail rotor.

The T129 ATAK is the helicopter selected in 2007 by the Government of Turkey for the Turkish Land Forces; development and production will be assured by the «ATAK Team», a Joint Partnership of Turkish Aerospace Industries, Inc. and AgustaWestland. The first TAI-manufactured helicopter was delivered to Turkish Land Forces by the end of April 2014.

T129 ATAK has been optimized to meet and exceed the «high and hot» performance requirements for harsh geographical and environmental conditions while providing the following key characteristics:

  • Day & night all environment capability; effective, precise weapon systems that provide combat superiority while low visual, aural, radar and IR signatures, high level of crashworthiness and ballistic tolerance provide high battlefield survivability.
  • Excellent situational awareness through good visibility arcs and fully integrated mission and communication systems.
  • Eased crew workloads through superior performance, agility and platform stability and handling qualities.
  • Reduced Preparation Time augmented by off-board Mission Planning System and reduced take-off time.
  • Low operating cost through effective design and on-condition maintenance.

T129 ATAK could be provided with MIZRAK ATGMs, and CIRIT (70-mm Guided Rockets) designed for Turkish Armed Forces. Further armament options include Hellfire and Spike ATGMs, Stinger A/A missiles. A new Forward Looking Infrared (FLIR) system increases image quality and range performance with real-time image processing and multiple target tracking with high resolution thermal camera, laser rangefinder, designator and spot tracker. The relatively small radar cross section and state of the art systems counter measure systems help to provide high battlefield survivability, low visual, aural, radar and IR signatures.

T129 ATAK advanced attack and tactical reconnaissance helicopter
T129 ATAK advanced attack and tactical reconnaissance helicopter

 

Technical Specifications

Powerplant LHTEC CTS-800 4A, 2×1,014 kW/2×1,361 shp
Maximum Design Gross Weight 11,023 lbs/5,000 kg
Length 44.75 feet/13.64 m
Main Rotor Diameter 39 feet/11.9 m
Overall Height 13 feet/3.96 m
Crew 2, Tandem
Cruise Speed 145 knots/167 mph/269 km/h
Range 303 NM/349 miles/561 km
Hovering In Ground Effect (HIGE) 13,100 feet/3,993 m
Hovering Out of Ground Effect (HOGE) 10,000 feet/3,048 m
Service Ceiling 20,000 feet/6,096 m
Endurance 3 hrs (standard tank)
Armaments 2×4 UMTAS ATGM Missile (or Hellfire or Spike)
4×19 70-mm (2.75”) Unguided Rockets
4×2-4 70-mm (2.75”) Guided CIRIT Rockets
2×2 ATAM Stinger
T129 ATAK developed from the combat proven AgustaWestland A129CBT
T129 ATAK developed from the combat proven AgustaWestland A129CBT

Thermal Vacuum Test

Engineers at Lockheed Martin recently proved their design for the world’s most powerful Global Positioning System (GPS) satellite can operate in and withstand the harsh conditions it will experience on orbit. On December 23, Lockheed Martin’s first GPS III satellite for the U.S. Air Force completed system-level Thermal Vacuum (TVAC) testing, validating the design of the entire assembled satellite. TVAC is a rigorous test designed to prove a satellite’s integrity and operational capabilities by subjecting it to prolonged cycles of simulated space temperature extremes in a special depressurized chamber.

The first GPS III satellite recently completed system-level Thermal Vacuum testing, validating Lockheed Martin’s design for the next generation of more powerful GPS satellites
The first GPS III satellite recently completed system-level Thermal Vacuum testing, validating Lockheed Martin’s design for the next generation of more powerful GPS satellites

«TVAC is the most comprehensive and perceptive test performed at the spacecraft level. If there is an issue with your design or production processes, you are going to find it here», said Mark Stewart, vice president of Lockheed Martin’s Navigation Systems mission area. «Successful completion of this significant test validates the thermal design of the spacecraft and verifies that all spacecraft components and interfaces operate at the temperature extremes of the space environment. We credit this performance to the Back to Basics work we performed earlier and the program’s unique GPS III Non-flight Satellite Testbed».

TVAC is the latest in a string of milestones for the first GPS III satellite. Last spring, the satellite’s major functional components were successfully integrated to form the first complete satellite. Last fall, the new satellite also successfully completed acoustic testing, where it was pounded with sound waves to simulate the vibrations it will endure during its launch.

With eight satellites under contract, the production line is now on a steady tempo at Lockheed Martin’s GPS III Processing Facility outside of Denver. The first four GPS III satellites are in various stages of assembly and test with most major components – including their structure and propulsion systems, solar arrays, and antennas – already delivered. This spring, with Harris Corporation’s delivery of its second navigation payload, the second GPS III satellite is expected to be integrated and begin environmental testing. Components for the next four GPS III satellites are already being assembled, tested and delivered on schedule by more than 250 aerospace industry companies from 29 states.

«We have a world class industry team supporting the development and production of GPS III for the Air Force and our nation», continued Stewart. «I thank them for their excellent work and commitment to this program».

GPS III will deliver three times better accuracy, provide up to eight times improved anti-jamming capabilities and extend spacecraft life to 15 years, 25 percent longer than the satellites launching today. GPS III’s new L1C civil signal also will make it the first GPS satellite to be interoperable with other international global navigation satellite systems.

The GPS III team is led by the Global Positioning Systems Directorate at the U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems Center. U.S. Air Force Space Command’s 2nd Space Operations Squadron (2SOPS), based at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, manages and operates the GPS constellation for both civil and military users.

GaN-based AESA

Air and missile defense is about to get better. Raytheon Company recently completed a series of company-funded milestones to upgrade the combat-proven Patriot Air and Missile Defense System. The projected upgrade delivers 360-degree capability and keeps Patriot ahead of increasingly more sophisticated threats, such as aircraft, drones, and cruise and ballistic missiles.

Artist's rendering of Raytheon's 360-degree capable Patriot radar array enhanced with GaN-based, AESA technology (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)
Artist’s rendering of Raytheon’s 360-degree capable Patriot radar array enhanced with GaN-based, AESA technology (PRNewsFoto/Raytheon Company)

The Patriot radar main array was enhanced with gallium nitride- (GaN) based, Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) technology. The same Raytheon engineers who completed those milestones are currently constructing a GaN-based AESA, full-size, main panel radar array. They are on track to have a full-scale main array prototype operational in early 2016 – just 24 months after the company started building it.

«Raytheon has invested more than $150 million in GaN technology and learned invaluable lessons while building our GaN-based AESA full-scale prototype», said Ralph Acaba, vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense at Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems business. «This ensures Raytheon is able to rapidly develop, build, test and deliver a combat-ready GaN-based AESA radar that gives Patriot 360-degree capability».

In 2015, Raytheon built a GaN-based AESA rear-panel array and integrated it with a radar for potential use in Patriot, using existing and recently modernized back-end processing hardware and software. The radar then tracked targets of opportunity, leveraging a seamless 360-degree view.

«Raytheon’s GaN-based AESA radar will outmatch future threats for the same reason today’s Patriot is able to outmatch current threats – because it is designed to be upgraded and we have a growth path for the system», said Tim Glaeser, vice president of Integrated Air and Missile Defense Business Development at Raytheon’s Integrated Defense Systems business.

The recently accomplished AESA GaN milestones include:

  • Completing construction of the AESA main array structure;
  • Constructing the AESA arrays’ radar shelter;
  • Integrating receivers and a radar digital processor into the radar shelter;
  • Delivering the shelter to Raytheon’s test facility in Pelham, New Hampshire;
  • Testing the radar’s cooling sub-system.

Raytheon’s GaN-based AESA radar will work with future open architecture (such as the Integrated Air and Missile Defense Battle Command System) and retains backwards compatibility with the current Patriot Engagement Control Station. It will also be fully interoperable with NATO.

The Raytheon-built GaN-based AESA radar uses three antenna arrays mounted on a mobile radar shelter to provide 360-degrees of radar coverage. The main AESA array is a bolt-on replacement for the current Patriot antenna. The GaN-based AESA array measures roughly 9′ wide × 13′ tall, and is oriented toward the primary threat. The new rear panel arrays are a quarter the size of the main array, and let the system look behind and to the sides of the main array to offer Patriot the ability to engage threats in all directions.

SCTV for Ukraine

Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems, a Textron Inc. business, announced on February 1 a contract with SpetsTechnoExport (STE), a subsidiary of Ukroboronprom (UOP), for the sale of three Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicles (SCTV). This agreement marks the first sale of the SCTV for Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems. The contract entails the sale of three SCTVs that will be delivered to Ukraine in an ongoing effort to improve the survivability and mobility of its light tactical vehicle fleet.

Developed to provide significant improvements to performance, durability and ballistic and blast protection, the Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV) redefines survivability for the High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV)
Developed to provide significant improvements to performance, durability and ballistic and blast protection, the Survivable Combat Tactical Vehicle (SCTV) redefines survivability for the High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV)

«We are excited to be working with the UOP on upgrading its HMMWVs (High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle) to the Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems SCTV», says Textron Systems Director of Business Operations, Europe and Africa, Bear Midkiff. «With this contract marking the first sale of our SCTV, this is a great accomplishment for Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems. In addition, we are honored to be «the other half» of this new, exciting relationship with Ukraine».

UOP’s interest in the SCTV was realized due to an emerging requirement for increased security and mobility for Ukrainian security, defense and law enforcement agencies. The SCTV meets these requirements due to its numerous protection and mobility enhancements. It features a fully-armored, monocoque v-hull crew survivability capsule designed to provide the highest levels of protection technology available in its class of vehicles. Additionally, engine upgrades and suspension enhancements provide for superior performance and mobility.

According to UOP Director General Roman Romanov, «The Marine and Land Systems SCTV will provide significant improvement to performance and durability for Ukrainian HMMWVs, as well as enhancing crew protection. More specifically, the SCTV will provide a strengthened chassis and improved anti-mine and ballistic protection similar to that of MRAP (Mine Resistant Ambush Protected) protection, which is designed specifically to withstand Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attacks and ambushes».

Developed to provide a more robust platform for the contemporary battlefield while increasing blast and ballistic protection levels to meet the modern day threats of the asymmetric battlefield, the SCTV redefines survivability for the HMMWV. Using patented armor technologies, the SCTV is equipped to handle a variety of missions including fire support, command and control, reconnaissance, engineer support and troop transport. Textron Systems Marine and Land Systems’ innovative SCTV is comprised of three modular upgrade kits that offer superior crew protection while restoring lost vehicle performance and extending the life span of the vehicle.

Designed as a seamless integration with the HMMWV, the SCTV offers greater mobility, survivability, and protection to bring your crew home safely
Designed as a seamless integration with the HMMWV, the SCTV offers greater mobility, survivability, and protection to bring your crew home safely

Next Air Force One

Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James, in coordination with Frank Kendall, under secretary of defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, has determined the Boeing 747-8 will serve as the next presidential aircraft, commonly known as Air Force One, Air Force officials announced on January 28.

The Boeing Co., Seattle, Washington, has been awarded a $25,776,011 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization Program Phase 1 Pre-Milestone B activities
The Boeing Co., Seattle, Washington, has been awarded a $25,776,011 cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization Program Phase 1 Pre-Milestone B activities

«The presidential aircraft is one of the most visible symbols of the United States of America and the office of the president of the United States», James said. «The Boeing 747-8 is the only aircraft manufactured in the United States (that), when fully missionized, meets the necessary capabilities established to execute the presidential support mission, while reflecting the office of the president of the United States of America consistent with the national public interest».

 

Meeting a Presidential Mission

Analyses of the capability requirements conclude a four-engine, wide-body aircraft is required to meet the needs of the Air Force One mission. Market research determined there are two four-engine platforms that could meet the requirements; the 747-8 manufactured by Boeing in the state of Washington, and the A380 manufactured by Airbus in Toulouse, France.

The decision, made official through a Determinations and Findings document, authorizes the commercial aircraft purchase by other than full and open competition. This decision, in conjunction with the notification of the Air Force’s intent to award a sole-source contract to Boeing for the modification of the 747-8, allows discussions with Boeing that will likely lead to a contract for the aircraft platform as well as the modifications necessary to missionize the aircraft.

 

Acquisition Strategy, Risk Reduction Work Remains

«This decision is not a contract award to procure 747-8 aircraft», said Colonel Amy McCain, the Presidential Aircraft Recapitalization program manager. «We still need to finalize the overall acquisition strategy and conduct risk-reduction activities with Boeing to inform the engineering and manufacturing development contract negotiations that will define the capabilities and cost».

The Air Force wants to own enough of the technical baseline to permit competition for sustainment throughout the aircraft’s planned 30-year life cycle, officials said. Competition can keep costs down, spur innovation and provide options.

«We are committed to incorporating competition for sub-systems of the missionized aircraft as much as practicable, and will participate substantively in any competitions led by the prime contractor», James said.

«The current fleet of VC-25 presidential aircraft has performed exceptionally well, a testament to the airmen who support, maintain and fly the aircraft», James said. «Yet, it is time to upgrade. Parts obsolescence, diminishing manufacturing sources and increased down times for maintenance are existing challenges that will increase until a new aircraft is fielded. The Air Force provides the president with safe and reliable air transportation with high levels of security and communication capability as the alternate airborne White House», she added. «This platform will meet the requirements necessary to provide that level of service for future presidents».

The secretary made clear affordability will be a key element of the PAR program. «The program will use multiple strategies, such as the use of proven technologies and commercially certified equipment, to ensure the program is as affordable as possible while still meeting mission requirements», James said. «We will insist upon program affordability through cost conscious procurement practices».

 

First live demonstration

The U.S. Navy recently tested its newly developed Common Control System (CCS) with a submersible unmanned vehicle during a series of underwater missions at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Keyport in Puget Sound, Washington. The CCS successfully demonstrated its capability to provide command and control to a surrogate Large Displacement Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (LDUUV).

A surrogate Large Displacement Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (LDUUV) is submerged in the water in preparation for a test to demonstrate the capability of the Navy's Common Control System (CCS) at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Keyport in Puget Sound, Washington in December 2015 (U.S. Navy photo)
A surrogate Large Displacement Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (LDUUV) is submerged in the water in preparation for a test to demonstrate the capability of the Navy’s Common Control System (CCS) at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Keyport in Puget Sound, Washington in December 2015 (U.S. Navy photo)

CCS is a software architecture with a common framework, user interface and components that can be integrated on a variety of unmanned systems. It will provide common vehicle management, mission planning, and mission management capabilities for the Naval Unmanned Systems (UxS) portfolio

During the test events in December 7-11, operators from Submarine Development Squadron 5 (SUBDEVRON 5) Detachment Unmanned Undersea Vehicle (UUV) used CCS to plan and execute several surveillance and intelligence preparation missions. The CCS sent pre-planned missions, via radio link, to the LDUUV’s autonomous controller and displayed actual vehicle status information to the operators during the test. The vehicle was able to maneuver to the target areas and collect imagery.

«These tests proved that operators could use CCS from a single global operations center to plan, command, and monitor UUVs on missions located anywhere in the world», said Captain Ralph Lee, who oversees the U.S. Navy’s CCS program at Patuxent River, Maryland. «This event also showed us that CCS is adaptable from the Unmanned Air Vehicle (UAV) to UUV missions».

Teams from the U.S. Navy’s Strike Planning and Execution and Unmanned Maritime Systems program office (PMA-281), Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command Pacific, John Hopkins and Penn State universities worked together to design, develop and test this software before executing the live demonstration in December.

«We had a really talented group of people working on this project», said Vern Brown, who supports the CCS Advanced Development team based in China Lake. «It was exciting taking the CCS concept of controlling an undersea vehicle from inception early in the year to a successful in-water demonstration».

The Director for Unmanned Systems’ (OPNAV N99) roadmap intends for CCS to be compatible across all domains – air, surface, undersea and ground. The U.S. Navy initially plans to deploy the CCS on Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAV). It will provide common vehicle management, mission planning, and mission management capabilities for the Naval UxS portfolio.

«Ultimately, CCS will eliminate redundant efforts, encourage innovation, and improve cost control for unmanned systems», Lee said.

Personnel supporting the Navy's Common Control System (CCS) program review data during a test event in December 2015 at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Keyport in Puget Sound, Washington. CCS is a software architecture with a common framework, user interface and components that can be integrated on a variety of unmanned systems (U.S. Navy photo)
Personnel supporting the Navy’s Common Control System (CCS) program review data during a test event in December 2015 at the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Keyport in Puget Sound, Washington. CCS is a software architecture with a common framework, user interface and components that can be integrated on a variety of unmanned systems (U.S. Navy photo)

Danish PIRANHA

General Dynamics European Land Systems has signed a contract with the Danish Defence Acquisition and Logistic Organization (DALO) for the delivery of 309 PIRANHA 5 Armored Personal Carriers (APC) in six variants (Infantry, Command, Ambulance, Engineer, Mortar and Repair), as well as a multi-year sustainment contract for the through life support of the vehicles in the future.

The wheeled PIRANHA 5 is technologically one of the most advanced armored wheeled vehicles, built on international battlefield experience
The wheeled PIRANHA 5 is technologically one of the most advanced armored wheeled vehicles, built on international battlefield experience

The contract was signed on December 15, 2015, and has a value of approximately $600 Million. Deliveries will commence in 2018 and continue through 2023. The PIRANHA 5 will gradually replace the M113 and will become the backbone of the Danish Army´s armored vehicle fleet. The contract is the culmination of an extensive evaluation and acquisition project and concludes one of the largest armored vehicle competitions in Europe.

«It is important that we invest in the Danish Defence. PIRANHA 5 is better protected than the ageing, armoured personnel carriers available to the army today, so with this purchase we are enhancing the army’s ability to carry out its future tasks», said Peter Christensen, Minister of Defence of Denmark.

«General Dynamics European Land Systems is very proud to have received this contract. It underlines the confidence and satisfaction of our Danish customer with our PIRANHA 5 platform, especially with the very high protection against ballistic threats, mines and Improvised Explosive Devices (IED) and the excellent mobility both on- and off-road», said Alfonso Ramonet, President of General Dynamics European Land Systems. «The PIRANHA 5 won in a highly competitive tender».

The contract was signed through General Dynamics European Land Systems – Mowag, the Switzerland-based subsidiary of General Dynamics European Land Systems.

In Royal Danish Army service the PIRANHA 5 will replace the M113 series of tracked APCs
In Royal Danish Army service the PIRANHA 5 will replace the M113 series of tracked APCs

 

PIRANHA 5

Highly mobile, armored multi-role wheeled vehicle with a high payload and a large internal volume. The PIRANHA 5 provides protection against current threats. Its integrated modular and adaptable survivability system can also be tailored to protect against future threats.

The economic Fuel Efficient Drivetrain System (FEDS) and the high performance diesel engine provide the expected power and cruising range. There is still growth potential in the area of hybrid power boost technology.

The semi-active hydro-pneumatic suspension system with height management allows the highest mobility and provides excellent ride comfort for the crew. The open vehicle architecture with health/usage monitoring system allows for rapid system integration, data exchange between onboard systems and future growth.

The wheeled PIRANHA 5 is technologically one of the most advanced armoured wheeled vehicles, built on international battlefield experience. The inherent growth potential and power reserves will provide the Danish Armed Forces the ability to upgrade the vehicle over the lifetime in accordance with new evolving requirements in the future. It builds on the heritage of the PIRANHA vehicle family already in service with the Danish Armed Forces, which has been proven in international operations.

For the Danish requirement the PIRANHA 5 had competed in trials against one other 8x8, the Nexter Systems Véhicule Blindé de Combat d'Infanterie, and three tracked offerings: the FFG Flensburger Protected Mission Module Carrier G5, BAE Systems Armadillo and General Dynamics European Land Systems – Santa Barbara Sistemas ASCOD 2
For the Danish requirement the PIRANHA 5 had competed in trials against one other 8×8, the Nexter Systems Véhicule Blindé de Combat d’Infanterie, and three tracked offerings: the FFG Flensburger Protected Mission Module Carrier G5, BAE Systems Armadillo and General Dynamics European Land Systems – Santa Barbara Sistemas ASCOD 2

 

Product Features

WEIGHTS (approximately)
Empty weight 17.0 t/37,478.6 lbs
Payload 13.0 t/28,660.1 lbs
Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) 30.0 t/66,138.7 lbs
DIMENSIONS (approximately)
Overall length 8.00 m/26.2467 feet
Height over hull 2.34 m/7.67717 feet
Overall width 2.99 m/9.80971 feet
Angle of approach 45°
Angle of departure 35°
Number of seats up to 13
PERFORMANCES WITH GVW
Maximum speed on roads 62 mph/100 km/h
Creep speed 1.8 mph/3 km/h
Gradient 60 %
Maximum side slope 40 %
Maximum step climbing 0.75 m/2.46063 feet
Fording depth 1.50 m/4.92126 feet
Trench crossing capability 2.00 m/6.56168 feet
Turning circle (curb-to-curb) 15.0 m/49.2126 feet
Range on roads (mix of road/off-road driving) 550 km/342 miles
Operating voltage 28 V DC
Power-to-weight ratio 14.3 kW/t (19.3 hp/t)
ENGINE
Type MTU
Fuel Diesel
Performance 430 kW/580 hp
Torque 2000 Nm
TRANSMISSION
Type ZF-Ecomat
Mode of operation Automatic
Number of gears 7+1 r.
DRIVELINE AND SUSPENSION
Axles All wheel drive
Fuel Efficient Drive train System (FEDS)
Wheels and tires 14.00/R 20 or 16.00/R 20 with Central Tire Inflation System (CTIS), run-flat inserts
Suspension system Height-adjustable, semi-active, hydropneumatic suspension system, independent on all wheel stations
Shock absorbers Hydraulic, integrated in the hydro elements
Brakes system Pneumatic double-circuit brake with 6-channel ABS (Anti-lock Brake System)
AMPHIBIOUS KIT (OPTION)
Seawater cooling system
Closable louvres of engine grills
Water propulsion 2 propellers
Steering control 2 twin rudders
Trim van and snorkel system
PROTECTION
Modular integrated protection layout
Baseline vehicle is designed for the highest level of protection against mine and Improvised Explosive Device (IED) threats
Latest shielding technology against Explosively Formed Penetrator (EFP) threats
Add on armour for different protection levels with coverage >95%
Provision for the Active Protection System (APS)
ARMAMENT (EXAMPLE)
Remotely controlled light weapon stations up to heavy turret/gun systems
EQUIPMENT
Nuclear, Biological, Chemical (NBC) overpressure system
Fire-suppression system for the crew compartment
A/C system
Arctic kit
Integrated starter generator for 100 kW external power
Modular electronics architecture (VECTRONICS, MILCAN, HUMS),

upgradeable according to customer requirements

BUILT-IN GROWTH POTENTIAL
Gross Vehicle Weight rating 33.0 t/72,752.5 lbs
Hybrid boost power +100 kW
Latest protection kit
Electronic architecture
Lethality
According to the MoD, the selection of the PIRANHA 5 was made «after thorough examination and evaluation of suppliers' offers and testing of the vehicles»
According to the MoD, the selection of the PIRANHA 5 was made «after thorough examination and evaluation of suppliers’ offers and testing of the vehicles»

Christening of
Sioux City

The Lockheed Martin-led industry team launched the nation’s 11th Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), Sioux City, into the Menominee River at the Fincantieri Marinette Marine (FMM) shipyard on January 30. The ship’s sponsor, Mrs. Mary Winnefeld, christened the USS Sioux City (LCS-11) with the traditional smashing of a champagne bottle across the ship’s bow just prior to the launch.

The Lockheed Martin-led industry team launched the nation's 11th LCS, Sioux City, into the Menominee River at the FMM shipyard
The Lockheed Martin-led industry team launched the nation’s 11th LCS, Sioux City, into the Menominee River at the FMM shipyard

«It is an honor and a privilege to serve as the sponsor of the future USS Sioux City (LCS-11) and to be a part of this major milestone along the way to her assuming her place as part of the great U.S. Navy fleet», said Mrs. Winnefeld. «I also look forward to an ongoing relationship with her courageous crews and their families throughout the ship’s lifetime».

Following christening and launch, USS Sioux City (LCS-11) will continue to undergo outfitting and testing before delivery to the U.S. Navy in early 2017.

«The future USS Sioux City’s interchangeable mission modules will empower her to face a variety of high-priority missions, from Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW) to Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) to Mine CounterMeasures (MCM)», said Joe North, Lockheed Martin vice president of Littoral Ships & Systems. «She is ideally suited to navigate the reefs and shallows in the Asia-Pacific, as USS Fort Worth (LCS-3) has demonstrated on her current 20-month deployment».

The Freedom-variant ships have demonstrated their value with successful deployments to Southeast Asia, including USS Fort Worth (LCS-3), which is providing the necessary capabilities for contingency operations in the region today. USS Freedom (LCS-1) conducted a successful deployment to Southeast Asia in 2013 and is currently operating out of her homeport in San Diego.

«The Christening and Launch of the USS Sioux City (LCS-11) is a proud event for FMM», said Jan Allman, President and CEO of Fincantieri Marinette Marine. «It showcases the craftsmanship and engineering capabilities of our workforce. We are confident that this ship will play a vital role in the Fleet, and carry the spirit of our industry team as she sails the globe».

The Lockheed Martin-led industry team is currently in serial production of the Freedom-variant, and has already delivered three ships to the U.S. Navy to date. The USS Sioux City (LCS-11) is one of seven ships in various stages of construction at Fincantieri Marinette Marine, with two more in long-lead production.

Mrs. Mary Winnefeld, ship sponsor of the future USS Sioux City, christens the 11th littoral combat ship before launching sideways into the Menominee River in Marinette, Wisconsin
Mrs. Mary Winnefeld, ship sponsor of the future USS Sioux City, christens the 11th littoral combat ship before launching sideways into the Menominee River in Marinette, Wisconsin

 

Ship Design Specifications

Hull Advanced semiplaning steel monohull
Length Overall 389 feet/118.6 m
Beam Overall 57 feet/17.5 m
Draft 13.5 feet/4.1 m
Full Load Displacement Approximately 3,200 metric tons
Top Speed Greater than 40 knots/46 mph/74 km/h
Range at top speed 1,000 NM/1,151 miles/1,852 km
Range at cruise speed 4,000 NM/4,603 miles/7,408 km
Watercraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 4
Aircraft Launch and Recovery Up to Sea State 5
Propulsion Combined diesel and gas turbine with steerable water jet propulsion
Power 85 MW/113,600 horsepower
Hangar Space Two MH-60 Romeo Helicopters
One MH-60 Romeo Helicopter and three Vertical Take-off and Land Tactical Unmanned Air Vehicles (VTUAVs)
Core Crew Less than 50
Accommodations for 75 sailors provide higher sailor quality of life than current fleet
Integrated Bridge System Fully digital nautical charts are interfaced to ship sensors to support safe ship operation
Core Self-Defense Suite Includes 3D air search radar
Electro-Optical/Infrared (EO/IR) gunfire control system
Rolling-Airframe Missile Launching System
57-mm Main Gun
Mine, Torpedo Detection
Decoy Launching System
U.S. Navy to receive nation’s 11th littoral combat ship
U.S. Navy to receive nation’s 11th littoral combat ship

 

Freedom-class

Ship Laid down Launched Commissioned Homeport
USS Freedom (LCS-1) 06-02-2005 09-23-2006 11-08-2008 San Diego, California
USS Fort Worth (LCS-3) 07-11-2009 12-07-2010 09-22-2012 San Diego, California
USS Milwaukee (LCS-5) 10-27-2011 12-18-2013 11-21-2015 San Diego, California
USS Detroit (LCS-7) 08-11-2012 10-18-2014
USS Little Rock (LCS-9) 06-27-2013 07-18-2015
USS Sioux City (LCS-11) 02-19-2014  01-30-2016
USS Wichita (LCS-13) 02-09-2015
USS Billings (LCS-15) 11-02-2015
USS Indianapolis (LCS-17)
USS St. Louis (LCS-19)
USS Minneapolis/St. Paul (LCS-21)
USS Cooperstown (LCS-23)

 

The U.S. Navy’s 11th littoral combat ship, the future USS Sioux City, launched sideways into the Menominee River in Marinette, Wisconsin, on January 30. Ship sponsor Mrs. Mary Winnefeld conducted the time-honored tradition of christening the ship by smashing a bottle of champagne across the bow

 

Recapitalizing JSTARS

For more than two decades, the Air Force’s Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) has provided valuable Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) to commanders by detecting, locating and tracking enemy ground forces from afar. Identified as the service’s fourth largest acquisition priority, the JSTARS weapon system is currently undergoing a major recapitalization – including its radar.

Flight engineer Technical Sergeant Bo Sullivan, 7th Expeditionary Air Combat and Control Squadron Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System crew member, prepares to take off on a mission over Iraq (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sergeant Aaron Allmon)
Flight engineer Technical Sergeant Bo Sullivan, 7th Expeditionary Air Combat and Control Squadron Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System crew member, prepares to take off on a mission over Iraq (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sergeant Aaron Allmon)

«JSTARS has the unique ability to provide a wide-area surveillance capability from long standoff ranges that would otherwise require the use of many smaller assets to perform the same mission – and the radar plays an integral part in that role», said Brian Carr, JSTARS Recapitalization Radar deputy IPT lead.

The existing system is armed with a multitude of sensors, antennas and a large 27-foot/8.2-meter radome; however, it’s the radar’s Ground Moving Target Indicator, or GMTI, and Synthetic Aperture Radar, or SAR, which enables the system’s ISR mission. GMTI is used to locate and track moving ground targets, and SAR is used to image stationary targets of interest. In addition, JSTARS is equipped with a PESA – short for Passive Electronically Scanned Array – antenna that can tilt to either side of the aircraft, resulting in a wide field of view that spans across thousands of square miles.

«Although the JSTARS radar was state-of-the-art when it was developed, technology has advanced significantly since its introduction in 1991», Carr said. «JSTARS Recapitalization is poised to leverage the technological advancements that have lowered the cost and enabled the use of Active Electronically Scanned Array, or AESA, radars».

AESAs are currently the primary type of phased array radar used by the U.S. Air Force. The use of a modern AESA radar will allow the JSTARS Recap to meet mission performance standards while operating on a much smaller business-class jet airframe.

AESA radars differ from the PESAs of yesteryear in several ways. By eliminating the PESA’s complex power distribution network, AESAs reduce signal loss and increase radar sensitivity. Both characteristics enhance detection capability and reduce the effects of a smaller aperture. Also, AESA radars allow for digital beam forming, which enables a number of advanced signal processing techniques.

In addition to incorporating an AESA-type radar into the JSTARS platform, the program office is also focusing on an open systems architecture approach with many of its components. By embracing open systems architecture, the U.S. Air Force hopes to ensure a competitive sustainment environment for future hardware and software upgrades.

«An open system architecture will provide Recap the flexibility to handle evolving and emerging technology at a reduced lifecycle cost», Carr said. «We are ensuring the warfighter will have the most capable system possible over its lifecycle at the best value».

Risk reduction efforts for the airframe, battle management command and control suite, communication systems and radar continue to gain momentum as the program officially reached a Milestone A decision December 10, 2015. Milestone A will allow program officials to exercise approximately $45 million in options on three separate pre-engineering, manufacturing and development contracts; the contract options cover system functional reviews, preliminary design reviews and subsystem prototype demonstrations over the next six months.

«Milestone A wouldn’t have happened without the full support and teamwork between the U.S. Air Force, OSD and our industry partners», said Colonel Dave Learned, JSTARS Recap senior materiel leader. «Bringing together our government and industry teams for this effort is a major step toward recapitalizing E-8C’s combat-proven capabilities».