OCTOBER 2023 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


Airbus signs € 1.2 bn contracts for Capability Enhancement and In-Service Support of French A330 MRTT fleet

Airbus Defence and Space has signed two contracts valued at € 1.2 billion in total with France’s Direction générale de l'armement (DGA) and Direction de la Maintenance Aéronautique (DMAé) for the Capability Enhancement and the In-Service Support of the French A330 MRTTs (Multi Role Tanker Transport) fleet.

New Zealand Air Force gets C-130J-30 Super Hercules flight simulator

The Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) is taking a significant step forward in modernizing its aging C-130H fleet with the construction of C-130J-30 Super Hercules flight simulator. The first phase of the simulator's construction has been completed in Montreal, Canada, and it is now en route to Florida for the next wave of fittings.

Croatia transfers 14 Mi-8 helicopters to Ukraine

On October 19, 2023, Croatia confirmed the transfer of 14 Mi-8-MTV-1 helicopters to Ukraine, a move supported by U.S. and Croatian Defense officials. These helicopters, which have served for more than three decades in varied roles, will join the Ukrainian armed forces, accustomed to this type of Russian-made multi-role helicopter.

NASA delays first flight of pioneering supersonic X-59 QueSST to 2024

NASA's Quest mission has postponed the maiden flight of its revolutionary X-59 supersonic aircraft until 2024. The delay comes as the agency works to overcome several technical challenges identified in 2023. NASA's X-59 research aircraft NASA was moved from its construction site to the flight runway at Lockheed Martin Skunk Works in Palmdale, California on June 16, 2023.

Shield AI's V-Bat Teams lead the way in US Army's future drone strategy

California-based defense technology company Shield AI introduced its new drone grouping technology, called V-Bat Teams, earlier this week. Developed in collaboration with the Air Force's AFWERX innovation unit, the technology is considered a major advancement in autonomous drones and is receiving attention for its potential applications in the Replicator program of the United States Department of Defense.

Royal Australian Air Force deploys F/A-18F Super Hornets and C-27J Spartan in Malaysia for FPDA Exercise Bersama Lima

Flying out of north-west Malaysia, the Royal Australian Air Force has deployed six F/A-18F Super Hornets and a C-27J Spartan to support Exercise Bersama Lima, one of the numerous exercises organized in the framework of the Five Power Defence Arrangements (FPDA).

US Army and Lockheed Martin conduct successful test of MFEW-AL Multi-Function Electronic Warfare-Air Large System

Lockheed Martin on October 18 announced a successful flight test of the Multi-Function Electronic Warfare-Air Large (MFEW-AL), an airborne electronic payload with attack and support capability. This MFEW-AL test represented the first time in decades U.S. Army Electronic Warfare (EW) soldiers successfully conducted a series of airborne electronic warfare against a variety of threat emitters. Additionally, this test marked a key milestone that moves the system closer from system development to initial production.

Philippines Air Force to get three new C-130J-30 Super Hercules

According to the Asia Pacific Defense Journal on October 18, 2023, the Philippines' Department of National Defense (DND) has confirmed its order of three new C-130J Super Hercules tactical transport aircraft from Lockheed Martin. The DND's issuance of the Notice to Proceed (NTP) to Lockheed Martin signifies the initiation of the contract to supply these advanced aircraft to the Philippine Air Force (PAF). The PAF is set to receive the C-130J-30 variant, an extended version of the Super Hercules, boasting a 15-foot longer fuselage compared to the standard model.

MBDA and South Korea KAI join forces to arm KMAH attack helicopters with advanced Mistral ATAM missile

On October 17, 2023, a pivotal development in global defense partnerships was unveiled as MBDA announced a contract with Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) for the integration of the Mistral ATAM air-to-air missile system on the Korean Marine Attack Helicopter (KMAH). Intended for exclusive use by the Republic of Korea Marine Corps (ROKMC), this sophisticated system is a variant of the renowned Mistral short-range air-to-air missile and will significantly elevate South Korea's defense capabilities.

US Air Force Reserve Command’s C-130H fleet undergoes Avionics Modernization Program Increment 2

The U.S. Air Force Reserve Command’s C-130H fleet began the transition from analog to digital recently with testing beginning on a major upgrade of the aircraft’s avionics system. The update, called Avionics Modernization Program Increment 2, is a significant improvement to the almost 60-year-old aircraft’s avionics and navigation systems.

US Department of Defense releases declassified images and videos of coercive and risky Chinese jet fighter pilots' behavior

The Department of Defense on October 17 released a collection of declassified images and videos depicting 15 recent cases of coercive and risky operational behavior by the People's Liberation Army (PLA) against U.S. aircraft operating lawfully in international airspace in the East and South China Sea regions.

Northrop Grumman to train and sustain US Air Force Home Station for Critical Gateway Technology

Northrop Grumman was selected by the U.S. Air Force for multiple awards to support the first Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN) home station in the continental United States.

Thales Scorpion HMD Helmet Mounted Display to equip Polish Air Force’s KAI FA-50 fighters

Thales on October 17 announced that it had been awarded a contract by Korea’s Aerospace Industries (KAI) to equip FA-50 fighters for Poland with its highly successful Scorpion Helmet Mounted Display (HMD).

Czech Air Force interested in getting Embraer C-390 Millennium medium transport aircraft

The Czech Ministry of Defense announced on October 17, 2023, on its Twitter page, that it had started discussions with Embraer, a Brazilian aerospace company, regarding the potential acquisition of the C-390 Millennium military transport aircraft. This decision follows extensive market research and analysis, which identified the C-390 as the ideal solution to meet the diverse needs of the Czech Armed Forces.


South Korean ROKADI to supply fuel interface rings to GA-ASI’s MQ-9B SkyGuardian

ROKADI, headquartered in the Republic of Korea, has recently entered into a Purchase Order agreement with General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) for the supply of fuel interface rings designed for GA-ASI's MQ-9B SkyGuardian/SeaGuardian Unmanned Aircraft Systems. This significant agreement was formalized during the Global Industrial Cooperation Association (GICA) 2023 Autumn Conference, which took place in Seoul, South Korea on October 13, 2023.

Vietnam Air Force to receive first batch of Aero L-39NG jet trainers

In a recent Facebook post on October 13th, 2023, Viet Defense reported that the Vietnamese Air Force has started flight testing of its newly acquired Aero L-39NG jet aircraft. These aircraft, designed for combat training, are being delivered by the Czech company Aero Vodochody.

Vrgineers and ART deliver mixed reality tracking system for future pilot training

Vrgineers and Advanced RealtimeTracking (ART) demonstrate the combination of XTAL 3 headset and SmartTrack3/M in a mixed reality pilot trainer. The partnership between these two technological companies started in 2018, and ever since, they have supported each other's products in the niche market.

Ukrainian Ministry of Defense receives Bo 105-E4 helicopter

The Ministry of Defense of Ukraine announced it has received a Bo 105-E4 helicopter. The Bo 105 is a light multipurpose twin-engine helicopter developed by the German company Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm.

US strengthens military support to Israel by deploying second Squadron of A-10 Warthogs

In response to recent Hamas attacks against Israel, the United States has taken significant steps to strengthen its military support for Israel and to strengthen its military presence in the region. A key initiative in this response is the deployment of a second squadron of A-10 Warthog ground attack aircraft, also known as the Thunderbolt II. This development was revealed through a tweet on the US Central Command's Twitter account on October 12, 2023.

US State Department clears transfer of 38 F-16 fighters from Denmark to Argentina

The US State Department has authorized the transfer of 38 F-16 fighter jets from Denmark to Argentina. On October 11, 2023, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Security Mira Resnick conveyed the approval to Jorge Argüello, Ambassador of Argentina to the United States. The move is part of Argentina's ongoing efforts to modernize its air force, which currently relies on an aging fleet. of planes.

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