As was true of much of the industry, Israel Aerospace Industries saw a fairly steep dip in sales during 2009, largely due to a marked softening in demand on the civil side of its business. Published financial results for the first three quarters of 2009 showed sales slipping by about 25 percent on 2008 and there were few signs that the fourth quarter numbers will have reversed this trend.
Following a successful test last fall, Raytheon’s fifth-generation AIM-9X–the principal short-range air-to-air missile employed by U.S. forces–could become a part of the air-to-surface inventory for employment against both land and sea targets.
Even in the era of ultra-high-technology security screening, there is still a place for traditional aircrew “wings,” name badges and other uniform insignia. Perhaps even more so. In fact, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires that all airline pilots and cabin attendants be clearly identified by insignia, such as pilot wings and name and cap badges decorated with a clear corporate identity.
Breaking with a tradition that has seen major military procurements signed and announced only in Abu Dhabi, the UAE government sealed deals for new training and AEW&C aircraft during the Dubai Airshow this month. Pilatus secured the new basic trainer, an order for 25 PC-21s worth $521 million, to also include several training simulators with all systems and services.
The movers and shakers of the airpower world were out in force here Saturday for the Dubai International Air Chiefs Conference. Organized by the Institute for Near East & Gulf Military Analysis–the UAE-based think tank–the conference featured presentations from nine air force commanders or their deputies.
Northrop Grumman’s E-2D Advanced Hawkeye is currently undergoing carrier compatibility tests at the U.S. Navy’s Patuxent River dummy-deck facility in Maryland before its first venture to sea. Initial carrier trials are to begin in the first half of next year, the exact schedule depending on carrier availability. Here at the Dubai Airshow an operational U.S. Navy E-2C Hawkeye 2000 from the U.S.S. Nimitz is on display in the static area.
Letters of offer and acceptance (LOAs) covering the supply of Raytheon’s AIM-120C-7, the latest version of the proven advanced medium-range air-to-air missile (Amraam), have been signed by three Arab nations: Kuwait, Morocco and Jordan (in order of signing).
The Saab 340 AEW&C aircraft with Erieye radar, which is destined for the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF), took to the skies for the first time on Friday, flying from Saab’s Linkoping plant where airborne early warning and control conversion work is undertaken. Thailand has one AEW&C aircraft on order (plus another option), as part of a deal involving Gripen fighters.
Last year the production version of the Saab BAMSE (Bofors advanced missile system evaluation) entered service with the Swedish armed forces and now the company is promoting the air defense system for export.
Boeing is making the long-delayed delivery of the Wedgetail airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) aircraft to the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) via the Dubai Airshow this week. The first of the six 737-based aircraft has arrived for display at the static park, where invited visitors will be able to go onboard.