In late March Saab announced a teaming agreement with Selex Galileo to develop the ES-05 Raven active electronically scanned array (AESA) radar for the Gripen Next Generation fighter program. Selex Galileo is also the lead in the Euroradar consortium developing the Captor radar for the Eurofighter, while Saab Microwave Systems (formerly Ericsson) builds the mechanically scanned PS-05/A radar currently installed in the Gripen.
If all goes well, the German air force could be the first air arm to routinely operate a military unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) in European airspace. The first Euro Hawk should fly from the U.S. to the Manching test base in southern German during mid-2010 and begin operational flight evaluations from Schleswig-Jagel air base a year later.
Denel Aviation of South Africa has been certified by Lockheed Martin as a service center for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of C-130s. Although there are already eight of these facilities around the world, this is the first one in Africa. Denel says that there are 140 C-130s or L-100s (the commercial version) flying in Africa with 14 operators. Denel has been maintaining C-130s for the South African Air Force (SAAF) for many years.
L-3 Avionics is at Booth No. 2526 demonstrating the GH-3001 electronic standby primary flight display, which the U.S. Army’s Redstone Arsenal has ordered for the CH-47F Improved Cargo Helicopter fleet program. The open-ended contract valued at approximately $9.2 million will run through early 2013.
Nivisys Industries received the first FAA TSO-C164 approval for its NVAG-6 night-vision aviator goggle. According to Nivisys, it is the first night-vision goggle (NVG) manufacturer to apply for and also first to receive FAA technical standard order (TSO) approval. “Nivisys decided two years ago that aviation safety hinged on FAA-approved NVGs,” said Gary Higman, manager of law enforcement and homeland security programs for Nivisys.
The four partner nations in Eurofighter have agreed to delay until 2015 the introduction of the Meteor, the advanced rocket-ramjet beyond visual range air-to-air missile (BVRAAM) designed by MBDA. The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) is managing the development of Meteor, and is the only country to have committed to production so far. However, the MoD told the UK National Audit Office that it was falling into line with Germany, Italy and Spain.
Flight Options vice president of flight operations Bob Tyler last month announced 63 more pilot furloughs “due to reduced demand due to the ongoing national recession.” The furloughs affected “13 Beechjet PICs, 11 Beechjet SICs, 28 Hawker SICs and 11 Citation X SICs,” according to a letter by Tyler to the pilot group. This latest reduction is in addition to the more than 100 pilots furloughed in late November.
In a letter sent to all pilots and flight attendants last Wednesday, Flight Options vice president of flight operations Bob Tyler announced furloughs that took effect yesterday “due to reduced demand due to the ongoing national recession.” The furloughs affect 63 crewmembers, including “13 Beechjet PICs, 11 Beechjet SICs, 28 Hawker SICs and 11 Citation X SICs,” according to the letter.
Equipment manufacturer Thales is one of the two main shareholders in Helisim, at 45 percent, on par with Eurocopter. The remaining 10 percent is held by Défense Conseil International (DCI). “We see our partnership with Eurocopter as our major investment in simulators,” said Chris Gane, general manager of Thales Training and Simulation. He is looking at opening training centers elsewhere in the world, again in cooperation with Eurocopter.
Two new medium-altitude long-endurance (MALE) UAVs are due to make their first flights next year as European aerospace companies challenge the lead in this field established by Israel and the U.S. The BAE Systems Mantis technology demonstrator, unveiled at the Farnborough Air Show in July, might become airborne as early as next month in Australia.