Airlift manufacturers were prominent at last month’s African Aerospace and Defence show in Cape Town, highlighting the need of the South African Air Force (SAAF) to renew its air transport fleet.
For many years the U.S. Air Force has operated a fleet of surplus Phantom IIs as QF-4s in the full-scale aerial target role (FSAT). Under projected usage rates, that fleet will be consumed within the next few years. Now, the Air Force has taken the first step to providing a replacement. Not surprisingly, the type chosen is the Lockheed Martin F-16, the older variants of which are entering the boneyard in some numbers.
India will test fly, in 2012, its indigenous airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) system integrated onboard a modified Embraer EMB 145, an official involved in the project said.
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 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.
Embraer has launched an Engine LRU (line replaceable unit) Pool Flight Hour program for Embraer E-Jet customers in Europe, Africa and the Middle East. It gives them unlimited access to and repair of General Electric engine LRUs.
Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) hopes that new export orders, such as a $50 million deal to supply unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to Russia, will bolster sales that dipped by 24 percent during the first quarter of 2009.
Despite a second-quarter charge of approximately 22 cents per share for delays on its airborne early warning & control (AEW&C) program, Boeing expects per-share earnings of $5.70 to $5.85 in 2008. The company also continues to expect strong double-digit earnings growth in 2009 with earnings per share unchanged at $6.80 to $7.
IAI’s Gulfstream G550-based conformal airborne early warning & control (CAEW) aircraft is making its world debut here at Farnborough. The aircraft has flown with the Israel Air and Space Force only since February, and its appearance here was not confirmed until a few days before the show.