Having acquired its first aircraft in 2004, the reborn Iraqi air force is now performing routine missions alongside coalition fleets in the country. Further procurement is expanding the air force inventory in key mission areas, and U.S. forces are extremely pleased with the progress that the young air arm has made in a short time.
Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control is promoting the ability of its Pathfinder thermal imager to provide pilots of support aircraft with the kind of brownout/whiteout imaging currently available to combat crews.
After a long-running procurement saga, the Royal Thai Air Force has selected the Saab Gripen to replace its elderly Northrop F-5 fighter fleet. The deal also covers the supply of airborne early warning aircraft to bolster the nation’s air defenses.
A senior air force officer serving with NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan has challenged the defense industry to produce lighter and more capable equipment for troops calling in air strikes on Taleban positions.
The UAE Air Force will make a decision soon regarding its key airborne early warning and control aircraft (AEW&C) requirement, AIN understands. The choice follows an extensive analysis of the force’s operational needs and the issue of a highly detailed request for information (RFI) last year.
The Pakistan air force is due to begin receiving new-build F-16s from Lockheed Martin beginning in 2009. The 18 aircraft on order–plus a major upgrade package for the nation’s existing aircraft and further options–will dramatically enhance the service’s capabilities and will bring to a close a controversial 20-year procurement saga.
Bahrain: The Royal Bahraini Air Force acquired its first batch of
F-16s in May 1990, having ordered eight Block 40 F-16Cs and four
F-16Ds through foreign military sales (Peace Crown I) channels in 1987. They flew missions during Desert Storm in 1991.
As reported first in AINalerts on September 20, the U.S. Air Force and Navy’s suspension of deliveries of the Hawker Beechcraft T-6A Texan II single-engine turboprop trainer is due to an unapproved change to the manufacturing process of the airplane’s wing spar, according to a Hawker Beechcraft spokesman.
News from the Lockheed Martin Advanced Developments Projects (ADP), aka The Skunk Works, is a rare commodity. But the Palmdale, Calif.-based R&D shop recently described progress in a hypersonic missile demonstration program, named the Revolutionary Approach To Time-Critical Long-Range Strike (RATTLRS).
Keeping with custom, Congress deserted Washington for the dog days of August with some small sense of accomplishment. Of the 1,570 bills submitted in the Senate and the 2,987 in the House before the recess, Congress tallied but 66 bills and resolutions that were signed into law. The Republican Study Committee reported that of those 66, 35 contained little or no significant costs to taxpayers.