September 2023 news

Defense Aviation and Aerospace Industry


BAE Systems Australia expands with aircraft coating facility in Williamtown

The Commonwealth of Australia and BAE Systems Australia have jointly announced the establishment of a new Aircraft Coating Facility at BAE Systems' Williamtown Aerospace Precinct, situated to the north of Newcastle. This initiative is part of a broader expansion effort aimed at accommodating future sustainment needs for the Royal Australian Air Force's (RAAF) fleet of F-35 aircraft.

Slovenia enhances air transport capabilities with second Leonardo C-27J Spartan

On September 19, 2023, Slovenia's Ministry of Defense announced the signing of an agreement for the acquisition of a second C-27J Spartan tactical military transport aircraft from Leonardo. The agreement was formalized by Slovenian Defense Minister Marjan Šarec and Italian Defense Minister Guido Crosetto and was publicized on the official website of Slovenia's Ministry of Defense.

Indian Air Force plans major fleet expansion with 100 more LCA Mark 1A Fighter Jets

Air Marshal VR Chaudhari, chief of the Indian Air Force (IAF), recently announced plans to acquire around 100 more Mark 1A Light Combat Aircraft (LCA). The announcement was made during his visit to Spain, where he received the first C-295 transport aircraft. 

Bell SMA Special Missions Aircraft helicopters offer ready-now solutions for military uses

As countries look to take more prominent stances in defense, finding the best combination of capability and cost has created a market for civil helicopters modified for multi-mission military capabilities. These needs are amplified by growing international instability and require ready-now solutions with proven track records. Bell is leveraging its experience across civil, para-public, and military helicopter domains to meet this demand with the special mission aircraft, SMA, initiative.

RTX Raytheon delivers first AESA radar for Boeing B-52H Stratofortress

Raytheon, an RTX business, delivered the first B-52 active electronically scanned array radar (AESA) to Boeing for the U.S. Air Force's B-52 Radar Modernization Program. This first radar will be used for system integration, verification, and testing. The new B-52 radar is based on AESA technologies developed from RTX's pioneering AN/APG-79 radar.

Australian and Indonesian Air Forces train air combat skills in AUSINDO 23 exercise

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) is deploying six F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters to Indonesia for the first time, as part of Exercise Elang AUSINDO 23. Held at Manado in North Sulawesi from 18 to 28 September 23, Exercise Elang AUSINDO 23 involves 150 RAAF personnel training alongside 160 Indonesian personnel. The Indonesian Air Force is deploying F-16 fighters for the air combat mission.

Bell celebrates Czech H-1 Program during NATO Days 2023 with delivering 3 AH-1Z Vipers and 1 UH-1Y Venom

Bell Textron is commemorating the successful delivery of four H-1 helicopters to the Czech Republic during NATO Days 2023. Three AH-1Z Vipers and one UH-1Y Venom have been delivered in the country as part of the 2019 deal to modernize the Czech Armed Forces with four AH-1Z Vipers and eight UH-1Y Venoms.

Belgian Defense starts participation in F-16 coalition to support Ukraine

Belgian Minister of Defense, Ludivine Dedonder, announced that "On Friday, September 15, 2023, the restricted Council of Ministers made a series of decisions that reaffirm our steadfast support for Ukraine and our role as a partner country within the international coalition to support Ukraine. As part of our participation in the international F-16 coalition, the restricted Council of Ministers confirmed our involvement in training Ukrainian F-16 pilots. Thus, I can confirm that six instructors and four mission planners will be trained in our country to subsequently provide training for Ukrainian pilots and other personnel. Furthermore, Defense will deploy a team of three military personnel to a training center for Ukrainian F-16 pilots in Denmark in the coming weeks".

Lockheed Martin UK launches Team Black Hawk for British New Medium Helicopter requirement

During the Defence and Security Equipment International (DSEI) exhibition on September 12 in London, Lockheed Martin made a significant announcement regarding its involvement in the UK Ministry of Defence's (MoD) New Medium Helicopter (NMH) requirement. The aerospace giant unveiled its strategy, which included a consortium of UK partners and a compelling case for adopting the Sikorsky Black Hawk helicopter as a replacement for the UK's aging mixed medium helicopter fleet. This revelation coincided with Lockheed Martin and its competitors eagerly anticipating the formal issuance of the Invitation to Negotiate (ITN) by the MoD.

US approves $5 Bn F-35 multirole fighter jet sale to South Korea

On September 14, 2023, the United States approved a $5 billion sale of 25 F-35A fighter jets to South Korea. The State Department informed the Congress of the decision and issued a statement clarifying the purposes of the sale.

Spanish Government approves €7 billion defense investment for C-295 Aircraft and Eurofighter Jets

On September 12, 2023, the Spanish government approved contracts for defense investments that include 16 C-295 aircraft and 25 new Eurofighter jets. The Defense Ministry plans to allocate 7 billion euros for these programs and other smaller contracts. The emphasis of investments is placed on the Air and Space Force.

US clears purchase by Poland of F-16 Sustainment and related equipment for USD 389 Mn

On September 13, 2023, the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency announced that the State Department had made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Poland of F-16 Sustainment and related equipment for an estimated cost of $389 million. The Defense Security Cooperation Agency delivered the required certification notifying Congress of this sale.

Aeralis secures strategic collaboration with Babcock to pioneer flexible aircraft delivery to air forces

Bristol-based light jet company Aeralis has announced a memorandum of understanding with Babcock France to explore the operation of flexible aircraft ‘as a service’ enabled by the design of Aeralis’ unique modular aircraft system. The agreement seeks to outline the value of a transformational delivery operating model for making different Aeralis aircraft configurations available to air forces as a service, including how this could support future flexible and affordable combat air support and training constructs ready for 5th and 6th air combat generations.

Next-Generation EC-37B EW aircraft to replace EC-130 Compass Call in US Air Force

The United States Air Force has taken delivery of its first EC-37B electronic warfare aircraft, according to an announcement from BAE Systems and L3Harris Technologies on September 12, 2023. The EC-37B is intended to replace the older EC-130 Compass Call. Gen. Mark D. Kelly, head of Air Combat Command, said the aircraft is arriving on schedule and will remain relevant with the introduction of Collaborative Combat Aircraft (CCAs) in the coming years.

Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton UAS achieves Initial Operating Capability with US Navy

Rho Cauley Bruner, director of the Triton program at Northrop Grumman: “Triton has proven to be invaluable for the maritime patrol and reconnaissance mission in the Indo-Pacific. Now that the system has achieved initial operating capability, commanders will be able to fully leverage Triton’s powerful sensor suite to detect and deter potential adversaries around the world.”

DSEI 2023: MBDA and Mitsubishi Electric announce collaboration for GCAP Global Combat Air Program

MBDA UK, MBDA Italia, and the Mitsubishi Electric Corporation announced a collaboration agreement at the Defense and Security Equipment International (DSEI) 2023 event. The agreement focuses on supporting the Effects domain for the Global Combat Air Program (GCAP), a joint venture involving the United Kingdom, Italy, and Japan.

Airbus hands over initial C295 aircraft to Indian Air Force

On September 13, 2023, Airbus Defence and Space officially announced the transfer of the first of 56 C295 aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF) in a ceremony held in Seville. The aircraft is set to begin replacing India's aging Avro-748 fleet and comes equipped with an indigenous electronic warfare suite. It will be flown to Delhi, India, by a joint IAF-Airbus crew in the coming days.

Massive USD 32.3 Bn Armed Overwatch and ISR sector opportunities according to Paramount

Paramount released a market report at the DSEI event in London on September 12th, 2023, revealing substantial opportunities estimated at $32.3 billion within the Armed Overwatch/ISR sector over the next five years. This report coincides with heightened global tensions and notable changes in modern warfare strategies.

International defense industries advance collaboration for GCAP Next-Generation Combat Aircraft

On September 12, 2023, leaders in the defense industries of the United Kingdom, Japan, and Italy entered into a trilateral Collaboration Agreement aimed at advancing the concept phase requirements for the next-generation combat aircraft as part of the Global Combat Air Programme (GCAP).

DSEI 2023: UK Italy and Japan join forces on GCAP's ISANKE and ICS electronics

At the DSEI 2023 exhibition in London, defense electronics companies from the United Kingdom, Italy, and Japan announces that they are collaborating to establish a joint project delivery framework for the ISANKE (Integrated Sensing and Non-Kinetic Effects) & ICS (Integrated Communications Systems) domain of GCAP (Global Combat Air Programme).

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