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MAY 2018 news

Air Forces - Aerospace and Defense Industry


French C-160G Gabriel electronic warfare aircraft against ISIS

A rare, official image of a secretive French C-160G Gabriel intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance aircraft supporting the ongoing U.S.-led campaign against ISIS on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian border has emerged online. Only for a very short time...

Jordan offers two Bell AH-1F Cobra attack helicopters to the Philippines

The Royal Jordanian Air Force has announced that it has decided to offer two Bell AH-1F Cobra combat helicopters to its Philippine counterpart, as well as a batch of TOW anti-tank missiles and ammunition. Already last year Jordan had offered three similar helicopters to the Kenyan air force.

Canadian CH-146F and CH-147F helicopters to operate in Mali

Helicopters and personnel from the Royal Canadian Air Force’s 450 and 408 Tactical Helicopter Squadrons completed an exercise to validate their capabilities in anticipation of an eventual deployment of a Task Force to Mali.

Three additional F-35s for Norwegian Air Force

On May 22, Norway took delivery of three new F-35 jet fighters at Ordland Air Base. The arrival of the fighters brings the total number of F-35s housed in-country for the Royal Norwegian Air Force up to six following initial delivery of the first three aircraft in November 2017. Another seven are stationed in the United States at Luke Air Force Base in Arizona where they are used for training and pilot/crew familiarity education.

Tender to upgrade Brazilian Air Force T-27 Tucanos

The Brazilian Air Force has issued a tender to upgrade the avionics on its Embraer T-27 Tucano (EMB-312) aircraft. The aircraft are used by the Air Force Academy to train pilots. Although Brazil currently operates 60 of the aircraft, the tender only calls for 50 to be upgraded. It is not clear what will happen to the remaining 10 aircraft.

SAAB Gripen of Swedish air force to be upgraded

SAAB has received an order from the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) concerning the upgrade of the JAS 39 Gripen C/D system. The order is valued at approximately SEK 224 million ($25 million).

First operational strikes for F-35 by Israeli Air Force

The F-35, one of the three candidates for the replacement of the Belgian F-16s (along with the Rafale and the Eurofighter), made its baptism of fire, but not with the US Air Force: "We made the very first operational strike of the F-35," said General Major Amikam Norkin, Chief of the Israeli Air Force (IAF), whom he describes as a "pioneer" in this area.

US clears $45M FMS to Bahrain for Mk 80 series GP bombs

The US State Department has approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to Bahrain of 3,200 General Purpose (GP) and Penetrator Warhead bomb bodies for an estimated cost of $45 million, the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) said on May 18, 2018.

AVIC Z-19E attack helicopter achieves firing flight tests

China's domestic Z-19E armed helicopter has completed firing flight tests, its developer the state-owned Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC) said Wednesday, May 16, 2018.

Aurora's AACUS unmanned helicopter completes first Operational Cargo Delivery to USMC

Aurora's Autonomous Aerial Cargo Utility System (AACUS) achieved a major milestone last week when it successfully delivered cargo to US Marines in the Integrated Training Exercise at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center Twentynine Palms in California.

PLAAF H-6K bombers land for the first time on South China Sea airport

The People's Liberation Army Air Force landed its H-6K bomber aircraft on an airport in the South China Sea during a recent exercise, marking the first time Chinese bombers have used an airport in the region..

First production Mi-171A2 multirole helicopter completes maiden flight

The first production helicopter Mi-171A2 has taken a test flight at the Ulan-Ude Aviation Plant owned by the Russian Helicopters Holding Company (part of Rostec). The first multirole Mi-171A2 will be delivered to UTair-Helicopter Services for experimental operation in polar regions.

Russian State Flight Test Center to be first to receive MiG-35 fighters

Russia's State Flight Test Center in Akhtubinsk in south Russia will be the first in the Aerospace Force to receive Mikoyan MiG-35 (NATO reporting name: Fulcrum-F) fighter jets after their state trials are completed, Air Force Commander and Aerospace Force Deputy Commander-in-Chief Andrei Yudin said.

China plans to deliver AG600 amphibious aircraft by 2022

The China-developed AG600 large amphibious aircraft is expected to be delivered to customers by 2022, says manufacturer the Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC).

Orbital ATK and IMI to jointly promote MPR bombs family for US

Orbital ATK and IMI Systems Ltd. have announced a teaming agreement in which Orbital ATK will produce and supply a U.S. version of IMI’s 500-lb Multi-Purpose Rigid Bomb (MPR500) and the MPR family of bombs for the United States, the two companies said on May 9, 2018.

PLAAF J-20 fighter jets perform first over-the-sea combat training

China's J-20 stealth fighter jets have begun their first-ever combat training over the ocean, a spokesperson confirmed Wednesday. "It will help the air force better fulfill its sacred duty of safeguarding China's sovereignty, security and territorial integrity," said Shen Jinke, spokesman for the Chinese People's Liberation Army Air Force.

Israel smashed Iranian-operated installations in Syria

On the 9-10 May night, retaliating to a mass attack by Iranian rockets on Israeli positions in the Golan region, the Israeli armed forces fired a large number of missiles on Iranian operated installations in Syria.

IAF' Upgraded C-130HI Karnaf airlifter declared operational

The Israeli Air Force C-130HI "Karnaf" aircraft was officially declared operational in an induction ceremony held last Wednesday in Nevatim AFB. The aircraft reached operational status after a year-long modification process, which extends the aircraft's lifespan using advanced avionic systems.

PLAAF' Y-20 airlifter conducts first airdrop and air delivery training exercise

China's Y-20 heavy transport aircraft has undergone its first airborne and air delivery training, said the Chinese air force on Tuesday. According to Shen Jinke, spokesperson of the air force, it marked a leap in the air force's strategic delivery and long-distance airborne combat abilities.

Indian Mi-17 helicopters to get new EW suites

The Indian Air Force (IAF) is planning to fit 90 legacy Mi-17-family helicopters with new electronic warfare (EW) suites, according to the Tribune newspaper.

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