December 2021 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


Indonesia eying F15-EX or Rafale fighter jet and abandons plans for Su-35

Recently, the Indonesiasn Air Chief Marshal Fadjar Prasetyo said that Indonesia is seeking a 4.5-generation mediumweight or heavyweight fighter.

France orders the H160M for its Joint Light Helicopter programme

The French Armament General Directorate (DGA) has signed a contract with Airbus Helicopters for the development and procurement of the H160M in the frame of the Light Joint Helicopter programme (HIL). The contract includes the development of several prototypes and the delivery of a first batch of 30 aircraft (21 for the army, 8 for the navy and one for the air force). The French Ministry for the Armed Forces plans to order a total of 169 H160M helicopters, or Guépard as it will be known in the French armed forces. Deliveries will start in 2027 beginning with the French Army.

US approves foreign military sale of 800 Hellfire AGM-114R2 missiles to Australia

The US State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Australia of Hellfire AGM-114R2 Missiles and related equipment for an estimated cost of $108 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this possible sale on December 20.

UK and Japan to develop future fighter jet engine demonstrator

The UK and Japan announce plans to develop a future fighter aircraft engine demonstrator and agree to explore further combat air technologies.

BAE Systems and Embraer team to explore potential defence variants for the Eve eVTOL aircraft

BAE Systems and Embraer Defense & Security have announced plans to embark on a joint study to explore the development of Eve’s electric Vertical Take Off and Landing (eVTOL) vehicle for the defence and security market.

US Department of Defense exercises options for 36 Leonardo TH-73A helicopters

Leonardo welcomes the announcement made by the U.S. Department of Defense to award AgustaWestland Philadelphia Corp. a $159.4 million USD firm-fixed price modification to the previously awarded contract for the U.S. Navy’s Advanced Helicopter Training System. This modification exercises options for the production and delivery of 36 TH-73A helicopters Lot III and initial spares.

Bell delivers Huey II to Bosnia and Herzegovinia

Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. company, announced the delivery of four Bell Huey II aircraft to the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina (AFBiH) on Dec. 4. The aircraft are part of an Foreign Military Sale signed in December 2019.

Northrop Grumman completes successful Anti-Access - Area Denial missile flight test

Northrop Grumman Corporation successfully completed the second flight test of its new anti-access/area denial (A2/AD) missile, demonstrating capabilities that will meet key objectives for the upcoming Stand-in Attack Weapon (SiAW) program. The test was completed utilizing a company-owned CRJ-700 aircraft as the testbed for the air to surface mission computer and sensors.

Orion UAV successfully hits aerial target during test

The Russian Ministry of Defense had released a video showcasing the first use of the Orion drone against an aerial target.

Ghana Air Force to get six L-39NG aircraft

On December 17, the Parliament of Ghana approved a €111.4 million performance sales and purchase agreement for the supply of six L-39 Next Generation (L-39NG) aircraft for the Ghana Air Force (GAF).

Michigan National Guard trains first Latvian UH-60 Black Hawk maintainer

When the Latvian Air Force recently purchased new UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters, the call went out for a potential UH-60 maintenance training location in the United States. The Michigan Army National Guard’s (MIARNG) Company B, 1st Battalion, 147th Aviation Regiment was chosen in part due to the long standing partnership Michigan has cultivated with Latvia through the National Guard Bureau’s State Partnership Program (SPP).

Boeing awarded contract to upgrade Royal Saudi Air Force AWACS to reach interoperability with US Air Force

The Boeing Co., Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, has been awarded a $397,921,549 firm-fixed-price contract for the Royal Saudi Air Force (RSAF) Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS) Modernization Program, Phase 2.

Northrop Grumman and Raytheon Technologies team complete Next Generation Interceptor System requirements review

The Northrop Grumman Corporation and Raytheon Technologies Next Generation Interceptor (NGI) team has completed its System Requirements Review (SRR) and is proceeding with initial system design, further risk reduction testing, and critical component qualification activities.

Rapid Dragon first live fire test of a Palletized Weapon System deployed from a cargo aircraft destroys target

The Air Force Rapid Dragon Program, a fast-paced experimentation campaign led by the Air Force Strategic Development Planning and Experimentation (SDPE) office, successfully completed its final flight test December 16 at the Eglin AFB Overwater Test Range.

Brazilian Army to address communication challenges in the Amazon with new HF system from Collins Aerospace

Collins Aerospace has been selected by the Brazilian Army to provide its High Frequency (HF) Cellular communications system as part of the Brazilian Army Border Surveillance and Monitoring Strategic Program (SISFRON) to improve communications capabilities for forces operating in the Amazon region.

Su-57 fifth-generation fighter may get flat nozzle for stealth purposes

The unique flat nozzle demonstrated during the roll-out of the latest S-70 ‘Okhotnik’ (‘Hunter’) heavy strike drone will most likely be installed on the next modifications of the Su-57 fifth-generation fighter for stealth purposes, Russian Air Force merited pilot Major-General Vladimir Popov told TASS.

OFFSET swarms take flight in final field experiment

Researchers, roboticists, and technologists deployed swarms of autonomous air and ground vehicles to test mission capabilities in the final field experiment (FX-6) of DARPA’s OFFensive Swarm-Enabled Tactics (OFFSET) program at the Cassidy Combined Arms Collective Training Facility (CACTF) in Fort Campbell, Tennessee. Since the program kicked off in 2017, OFFSET has held six field experiments with objectives of increasing complexity and difficulty.

Royal Air Force concludes exercise season with Qatar National Day flypast

Three Royal Air Force (RAF) Typhoons have flown in the Qatar National Day fly past over Doha on December 18 alongside aircraft from the Qatar Emiri Air Force, celebrating 50 years of official diplomatic relations between the UK and Qatar.

Last flight of the Belgian Air Force C-130H Hercules

According to information published by the Belgian Air Component on December 16, 2021, the Farewell C-130 military transport aircraft was scheduled to make its last flight on Friday, December 17, after a career of fifty years with the 20th Squadron of the 15th Airlift Wing based in Melsbroek (Brussels).

Poland will buy more S-70i Black Hawk helicopters

According to information published by TVP World on December 15, 2021, Polish Defence Minister Mariusz Błaszczak approved the contract for the acquisition of four S-70i Black Hawk helicopters.

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