Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Companies, Contract Awards, Countries, D'Assault, development program, Events, India, MiG, Military Aviation, production program, Proposal, SAAB, Services
The Indian Government yesterday stated that it had completed their evaluation of the offset reports submitted by the two bidders for their new fighter program. This will allow Eurofighter and Dassault to submit their final offers with a goal of announcing the winner in November.
The two Western European companies were chosen from among a total of six offerors to go on in the contest after a series of evaluations earlier this year. Lockheed Martin (LMT), Boeing (BA), MiG and SAAB had also proposed aircraft but their proposals were knocked out after a series of reviews and flight demonstrations.
Since Brazil’s contest for a similar combat aircraft has seemed to stall the Indian contract is one of the largest foreign sales available at about $10 billion and became very important as the U.S. and Europe plan to reduce their defense spending. With the U.S. focusing on the F-35 from Lockheed and countries like Great Britain, Germany and France ending their buys of the Eurofighter there has been little sales for other fighters. The Dassault Rafael and SAAB Gripen have not found another user other then the home nation as well which put pressure on them to try and keep their production line going.
The elimination of the two U.S. aircraft was also a surprise as India had been looking to that country for more equipment. This has included purchases of Boeing P-8I maritime patrol aircraft and C-17 transports. The choice not to have one of their fighters continue into the next round dealt a blow to the U.S. defense contractors hope of selling more to India.
When the decision is made it will mark the end to an over four year acquisition process with a hope that there will not be any corruption issues as has happened with so many Indian procurement programs in the past. The new fighter is a key component of the upgrading of the capabilities of India.
Filed under: BAE Systems, Boeing, Brazil, Business Line, Companies, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, D'Assault, development program, EADS, Events, France, India, Lockheed Martin, MiG, Military Aviation, production program, Restructuring, SAAB, Services, Sweden, UAE
The Western defense contractors face a shrinking market right now domestically for advanced combat aircraft. The U.S. and many of its Allies are committed to Lockheed Martin’s (LMT) F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and that system will dominate their inventories for the next few decades. The U.S. ended production of the F-22 Raptor by Lockheed and Boeing (BA) and European nations have pretty much finished up ordering Eurofighter Typhoon’s with the United Kingdom even planning retiring some of their older aircraft due to budgetary pressures. France and Sweden have their own domestic aircraft in the Dassault Rafale and SAAB Gripen but have purchased as many of those as they really can.
All of these companies and countries have looked to overseas customers to sell these aircraft with the two biggest deals being for Brazil and India. Unfortunately these contract are not materializing in the near future and may now be pushed out a year or two.
India has planned major upgrades to its military through the purchase of advanced Western systems. This has included aircraft like C-130J transports from Lockheed and P-8I maritime patrol aircraft from Boeing (BA) but their cornerstone program was for over a hundred fighters. This contract has been going through the source selection with the competitors from the U.S., Europe and Russia demonstrating their aircraft and at one point was hoped to be awarded this summer. It is now being reported that this major contract won’t be decided until early in 2012.
Brazil has also been planning to expand and improve its military through some deals with overseas suppliers. They too would like to buy a new fighter and that contest has seemed to be between Boeing’s F/A-18 and the Rafale although SAAB bid as well. The original plan was to award this year but due to budget cuts the decision will now be postponed for at least twelve months. There are concerns that it may not happen at all as Brazil had to cut its defense spending significantly.
Finally Dassault had hoped that the U.A.E. might invest in the Rafale as well which so far has yet to find a foriegn buyer. The Emirates already operates French Mirage aircraft and the Rafale would be the logical extension of these. The big arms expo in the U.A.E., IDEX, came and went though without any announcement of a deal although a contract was awarded to upgrade Mirage aircraft worth about $30 million. Failure to win this contract would be a blow to France’s aggressive campaign to sell the fighter to new customers.
It had been hoped that these overseas sales would make up for the decline in U.S. and European defense spending and help keep production lines going and workers employed. Unfortunately they are not materializing as fast as hoped and this may affect different contractor’s plans. The Asian and South American markets were seen as key to keep the defense business going in the next several years. It may be that even these nations who were hoping to improve their military may not have the money necessarily to meet their original plans.
Photo from Jerry Gunner’s flickr photostream.
Filed under: Boeing, Congress, EADS, KC-X, KC-X Tanker News, Syndicated Industry News
The Indian military as part of its ongoing efforts to upgrade the overall technology of their equipment has tendered a contract for new aerial tankers. Currently they use a version of the Russian Ilyushin (IL)-78 tanker developed several years ago and in service with the Russian military. Reportedly Airbus, and EADS (EADS:P) company, and Ilyushin will submit bids for this contract.
Last year Airbus had submitted a proposal to sell the A330MRTT tanker to India but the contract award was canceled by the Finance Ministry as being too expensive. This contest is a result of that decision.
The A330MRTT is undergoing certification testing for Australia as well as being built for the United Kingdom and the U.A.E. and Saudi Arabia. It is also going to be EADS North America’s submission for the KC-X tanker contract for the U.S. Air Force.
Of note the existing IL-78 tankers have been supporting the flight demonstrations for India’s MMRCA new fighter contract. This means they have required the contestants to be modified to work with the IL-78. Competitors include the F/A-18, Rafael, SAAB Gripen, MiG and Eurofighter. This demonstrates that the IL-78 may be able to fuel a fleet of modern Western aircraft.
If Airbus does win the Indian competition it is only for a few aircraft but it will aid them in getting their production processes in place to get ready for the much larger KC-X contract. The more of the model of the aircraft flying as well will help them with the overall cost of the aircraft and program. Just as the more 767 tankers Boeing (BA) sells to other countries the better for them.
Filed under: Australia, Boeing, Brazil, Business Line, Canada, Companies, Contract Awards, Countries, development program, Events, Holland, India, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, northrop grumman, production program, Proposal, SAAB, Services, Sweden, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy
Right now two of the biggest military aviation contracts out there are new fighters for Brazil and India. Both of these contracts have attracted bids from United States and European defense contractors. In Brazil the contest seems to be between the Boeing (BA) F/A-18 and the French Rafael. In India there have been offers from Boeing, Lockheed Martin (LMT), MiG of Russia, Rafael. Eurofighter and SAAB of Sweden. These contracts are interesting as all of these companies face declining markets at home due to budget difficulties and the decision by the U.S. and many of its Allies to focus on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) headed up by Lockheed.
Canada currently operates a force of older F/A-18 aircraft and is planning a potential buy of more modern aircraft worth about $9 billion (Canadian). Canada has put some money into the development of the JSF as have countries like Great Britain, the Netherlands, Australia and Japan but is not committed to buy the aircraft. They certainly could do that when the aircraft is ready in the 2015 – 2017 time frame or they could conduct a new competition. If they did this they would certainly draw a diverse group of suitors similar to what India has. The market for new fighters was supposed to stagnate as thousands of F-35 replace the F-16 aircraft of numerous U.S. Allies. Now with the delays and cost increases to that program some countries are having second thoughts.
A third major competition would be good for the industry and would allow some production lines like the SAAB Gripen to remain hot as the JSF program tries to get itself sorted out. If countries like Holland do decide to go a different path the market for current in production aircraft will increase greatly.
More fallout as the JSF program struggles with its cost and schedule may be expected as current customers re-think their commitments. This will increase the cost to the U.S. military while reducing Lockheed’s chances of making up some of their losses on the development piece of the contract. Canada if they choose to not buy the JSF may be the start of some bad news for the program and its prime contractor.
Photo from TMWolf flickr photostream.
SELEX Galileo concludes agreement to establish ATMOS as the Brazilian Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar centre of excellence
May 5, 2010
SELEX Galileo, a Finmeccanica company and Europe’s leading supplier of sophisticated airborne radar systems has concluded an agreement with ATMOS, a subsidiary of ATECH, to establish them as the Brazilian AESA Radar Centre of Excellence and Airborne Radar Systems House. The agreement is directly in accordance with the Brazilian Defence Strategy’s intention of strengthening Brazil’s national defence industrial capability.
The agreement which follows on from the recent Memorandum of Understanding focuses on the individual target programmes, such as the Raven ES-05 AESA for Gripen Next Generation (NG), and details the training, development, production and support activities to be carried out by ATMOS. In addition to the Raven ES-05 AESA radar for the Saab Gripen NG proposed for the FX-2 programme, the agreement also covers all radars in the SELEX Galileo portfolio including the Seaspray 5000E and 7000E AESA surveillance radars and the Gabbiano T20 mechanically scanned (M-Scan) surveillance radar system.
This range of surveillance radars is being offered to meet a wide range of major Brazilian Air Force requirements including maritime patrol aircraft and helicopter operations.
The collaboration will provide ATMOS with in depth training on radar systems, development activities in the Raven ES-05 AESA, including full participation in the final testing and flight trials, plus the skills necessary to test and fully support the radar in Brazil. In the longer term joint development of advanced radar sub-systems will take place to ensure the future needs of the Força Aérea Brasileira (Brazilian Air Force) are met. This transfer of knowledge and technology also applies to the other SELEX Galileo radars to ensure that the ATMOS capability covers all aspects of airborne radar systems.
“We consider this to be a hugely important agreement” said Alastair Morrison, Senior Vice President of Radar and Advanced Targeting Line of Business in SELEX Galileo. “Brazil is an increasingly important market for us and we understand the need to transfer knowledge and technology to satisfy the Brazilian needs. In ATMOS, we have found a partner with the vision and capability that will allow us to make that a reality. As important, we have found a partner who will work with us to exploit the engineering capability in Brazil and ensure that SELEX Galileo and ATMOS can develop innovative and effective radar systems in the future”.
April 21, 2010
SELEX Galileo’s prototype of its Raven ES-05 Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, the Raven 1000P, is playing a key role in the Saab Gripen Next Generation flight proving and demonstration programme.
The programme has been very successful, demonstrating radar modes in flight as well as showing the effectiveness of the SELEX Galileo and Saab team in integrating the radar into the weapon system and proving real capability in very short timescales.
Both air-to-air and air-to-ground modes have been integrated with great success and the expected performance has been achieved. Particular focus was placed on the air-to-ground capability and Raven 1000P produced excellent medium and high resolution SAR imagery at long ranges.
Trials will continue and capability insertion will take place at the appropriate points in the development schedule.
Notes to the Editors:
SELEX Galileo, a Finmeccanica Company, is a key provider of leading edge sensors for the most advanced fighters. In recent months, SELEX Galileo has been selected by Saab to supply two key sensors: the Raven ES-05 and the Infrared Search & Track (IRST) system SKYWARD-G.
Raven ES-05 is a high performance, premium class fire control radar. Building on over 50 years of fire control radar experience, Raven ES-05 delivers greater performance and higher reliability than comparable mechanically scanned radars.
With the Raven ES-05 and with the IRST, the Company will be guaranteeing the full mission effectiveness of the next generation aircraft Gripen NG.
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Countries, Department of Defense, Events, Military Aviation, production program, Services
The new NATO states of Eastern Europe have been working diligently to upgrade their forces to meet the standards of the western alliance. At the same time they have to be careful as to how much they spend. In this vein it was announced that the U.S. Government will sell twenty-four F-16 fighters to Romania. The aircraft will replace aging MiG-21 Fishbed Soviet made fighters.
Due to their lack of resource Romania will buy used aircraft through an intergovernmental contract. In fact the aircraft will be provided for free with Romania responsible for paying for upgrades, training and infrastructure. The country had looked at other available aircraft including more modern SAAB Gripen and Eurofighters but just could not afford them. This path gets better capability at a lower price.
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Companies, Contract Awards, Countries, D'Assault, EADS, Events, India, Lockheed Martin, MiG, Military Aviation, production program, Proposal, SAAB
Update — Flight International is reporting that India says it has not ruled out any competitor in the program.
The Indian Air Force is looking to purchase an advanced fighter to add to their inventory. Six foreign companies had submitted bids for the 126 aircraft order. Now word comes that the French proposed Dassault Rafale was eliminated from the competition. The Indianexpress.com reports that publicly it was stated the aircraft did not meet certain “qualitative” requirements. It was also said that the proposal submitted showed the aircraft did not meet some of the technical requirements for the program. This means that the contest will continue with Boeing, Lockheed Martin, SAAB, MiG and Eurofighter participation for now.
The deal is one of several that India is proceeding with in an attempt to upgrade the technical capability of their armed forces. In the past the country had tended to buy from Russia or England. India has also spent the last several years developing an indigenous arms industry. Although lately they have turned to outside sources to include Israel and the U.S. for advanced weapons.
Currently there are several nations looking at buying advanced fighters. The Rafale has not been bid for many as most of the competition has been between the F/A-18G, SAAB Gripen, F-35 JSF and the Eurofighter Typhoon. The Indian contract is certainly one of the largest percolating.