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Military Aircraft
 
MULTIPLE F-35S TAKE TO THE SKIES TO TEST COMMUNICATION DATA LINKS
Friday, December 9, 2016
Click image for a larger picture

Three F-35As and an F-35C during four-ship test sortie

Source: Darin Russell/Lockheed Martin


Three F-35As and an F-35C during four-ship test sortie

Source: Darin Russell/Lockheed Martin


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EDWARDS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. - All three variants of the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter were used by the 461st Flight Test Squadron in recent multi-ship testing, which employs four or six jets to ensure communication systems between the planes are working properly and accurately. The F-35 contains state-of-the-art tactical data links that provide the secure sharing of data among its flight members as well as other airborne, surface and ground-based platforms required to perform assigned missions. "One of the primary reasons we do multi-ship testing is to ensure data is shared appropriately between aircraft in order to maximize lethality and survivability," said Maj. Raven LeClair, 461 FLTS, F-35 test pilot. "The F-35 uses [Multifunction Advanced Data Link] to share information on air and ground threats in order to more effectively target. This is especially applicable to one of the F-35’s primary missions - finding and killing advanced surface-to-air missile systems." The MADL is a high-data-rate, directional communications link that allows secure transmission of coordinated tactics and engagement for the fifth-generation fighter when operating in high-threat environments. LeClair said his squadron is specifically testing the ability to find SAM systems using a capability called Enhanced Geo Location.

He added the MADL architecture is divided into flight groups so it is important to test the capability to pass data between flight groups using four or six aircraft to ensure system accuracy, stability and usability during large force exercises and actual combat. According to the Air Force, the F-35 has unprecedented situational awareness. The F-35’s advanced sensor package is designed to gather, fuse and distribute more information than any fighter in history, which gives pilots a decisive advantage over all adversaries. "Having a common battlefield picture is one of the greatest assets in combat," LeClair said. "This capability must be proven to be secure and ensure maximum interoperability between 4th and 5th-generation fighters. The F-35 has an incredible capability to show the entire tactical picture and being able to share this tactical picture with all forces is critical to maximizing lethality, survivability and minimizing the risk of fratricide." The F-35 is designed to replace aging fighter inventories including U.S. Air Force F-16s and A-10s, U.S. Navy F/A-18s, U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B Harriers and F/A-18s, and U.K. Harrier GR.7s and Sea Harriers. The 461st FLTS and Joint Strike Fighter Combined Test Force at Edwards AFB conducts developmental test and evaluation of the F-35 with all three variants - the A, B and C models. Developmental test and evaluation will make way for future operational tests. "As we approach the end of System Development and Demonstration phase, many of our capstone testing events will be multi-ship to ensure compliance with the requirements before transitioning to operational testing," said LeClair.

Source:  US Air Force
Associated URL: af.mil
Source Date: December 9, 2016
Author: Kenji Thuloweit, 412th Test Wing PA 
Posted: 12/09/2016

 
 
U.S. APPROVES APACHES FOR UAE
Thursday, December 8, 2016
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ASQ-170-equipped Apache attack helicopter

Source: Lockheed Martin


ASQ-170-equipped Apache attack helicopter

Source: Lockheed Martin


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WASHINGTON - On December 8, the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency announced that the State Department had approved a possible Foreign Military Sale to the United Arab Emirates regarding the acquisition of AH-64E helicopters, as well as equipment, training, and support.

The estimated total value of the potential sale is $3.5 billion.

According to the DSCA, the UAE requested a sale of 28 AH-64E Remanufactured Apache Attack Helicopters as well as nine new-build AH-64Es. Alongside these were requests for 76 T700-GE-701D engines, 39 AN/ASQ-170 Modernized Target Acquisition and Designation Sight/AN/AAR-11 Modernized Pilot Night Vision Sensors, 32 remanufactured AN/APR-48B Modernized Radar Frequency Interferometers, 46 AAR-57 Common Missile Warning Systems, 88 Embedded Global Positioning Systems with Inertial Navigation, 44 Manned-Unmanned Teaming-International (MUMTi) systems, and 15 MUMTi System Upper Receivers.

The U.S. noted that the proposed sale would not affect the military balance in the region.

The notice of the sale's approval does not mean a sale has been concluded.

Source:  DSCA
Associated URL: http://www.dsca.mil/major-arms-sales
Source Date: December 8, 2016
Posted: 12/09/2016

 
 
FIRST UKMFTS H135 JUNO AND H145 JUPITER ARRIVE IN BRITAIN
Thursday, December 8, 2016
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H135

Source: Airbus Helicopters


H135

Source: Airbus Helicopters


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OXFORD, UK - The H135 Juno and the H145 Jupiter, the first two aircraft in the 32-strong fleet of the UK Military Flying Training System (UKMFTS) helicopters, can be seen together for the first time, marking the start of a new era in helicopter military flight training in the UK.

Flown over from the Airbus Helicopters’ manufacturing site in Donauworth, Germany, G-CJIW H135 Juno aircraft joins the G-CJIV H145 Jupiter which was the first UKMFTS helicopter to arrive in Britain, landing at the company’s UK headquarters at Oxford Airport. The H145 Jupiter is currently being operated by a joint military and civilian fielding team in support of the UKMFTS program and for which the first three pilots have now completed their H145 type ratings. The first H135 Juno will enter a short program of modification to meet specific UKMFTS training requirements before being operated by the UKMFTS fielding team.

The aircraft will allow UK armed forces to benefit from conducting initial training on a twin-engine, full glass cockpit aircraft; thus reducing the time needed to retrain once in contact with frontline helicopters. Furthermore, the H135 and H145 family of aircraft, equipped with Airbus Helicopters advanced avionics suite Helionix, provides for a much improved flight and safety envelope.

Full service training delivery is due to begin on April 1, 2018, an auspicious date given it is the 100th Anniversary of the Royal Air Force.

To meet this, key infrastructure work is progressing well at RAF Shawbury and RAF Valley, home to the UKMFTS rotary wing system, while teams of pilots, engineers, planners and instructors have already been fully engaged with the Ascent fielding team, ensuring that skills and capability are ramped up in preparation for the significant deadline.

Source:  Airbus Helicopters
Associated URL: airbushelicopters.com
Source Date: December 8, 2016
Posted: 12/09/2016

 

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