Filed under: Japan, South Korea, Syndicated Industry News, Taiwan, U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security, United States
Filed under: Italy, Japan, missile defense, Poland, Syndicated Industry News
Northrop Grumman Corporation has delivered the first of four AQS-24A airborne mine-hunting vehicles to the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) for deployment on Japan’s new MCH-101 helicopter platform. The AQS-24A and its predecessors,...
Filed under: Australia, Business Line, Canada, Companies, Countries, Department of Defense, development program, England, Events, FMS, Holland, Israel, Japan, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, production program, Services, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, UAE
The F-35 “Lightning II” Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) will be used not only by the U.S. military to replace its aging F-16, A/V-8, F/A-18 and A-10 aircraft but also by many other NATO countries and allies. It is being purchased as a F-16 replacement by many of these and like the successful F-16 program will have manufacturing and parts co-share agreements with different international partners.
The delays and cost increases to the program have been well documented and these have caused some early planned users to question the financial sense of continuing the program. Many of these countries, though, have already contributed through development funds as well as already had their aerospace contractors sign contracts and agreements with Lockheed Martin (LMT) to produce parts for the aircraft which continues in its Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP).
Canada, the Netherlands and Australia have had and continue to have debates about their purchase of the advanced aircraft rather then existing systems like the F/A-18, Eurofighter, Rafael, SAAB Gripens and Russian alternatives. In Canada they are reviewing the whole cost analysis that had led to the decision to continue the purchase which could technically end it and look at other aircraft. That leads to editorials and articles like this one, “The Case for the Super Hornet As The RCAF’s New Fighter” from Canada or analysis in Australia such as this: “Politics first as white paper fails on big issues”.
At the same time the U.S. has been successful in adding Foreign Military Sales (FMS) of the aircraft most notably to Israel and Japan. There has also been interested expressed by other U.S. allies like the U.A.E.
The commitment of the foreign partners is somewhat critical to the whole program as a reduction in buy quantity will have a ripple effect on the whole program. Less purchased in total and annually will cause a cost increase for each aircraft and the whole program. The F-35 PEO, Lt Gen Bogdan, identified this risk in Congressional testimony in April. If somebody drops out the price the others pay will go up putting more pressure on their budgets and perhaps cause them to drop out too. This would then become a spiral causing issues for the U.S. and all of the other nations involved in the program.
Despite the issues with the aircraft over the last decade the U.S. remains committed to the program. Over 100 are on order and there is discussion to award a new 2 year production contract this summer for a further 60-70. Training is underway for both aircrew and maintainers of the U.S.A.F., Navy, Marines and allies. The big questions remain though about completing development, how many will be built, and who ultimately will operate the aircraft.
Japan has ordered its armed forces to shoot down any North Korean missile headed towards its territory, a defence ministry spokesman says. Japan’s Navy operates four Kongo class destroyers equipped with AEGIS-BMD type anti-air and missile...
Filed under: Japan, missile defense, South Korea, Syndicated Industry News
The massive display of offensive capability along with missile defense, in and around the Korean Peninsula, including the flights of nuclear capable B-2 stealth bombers, is an absolute necessity for...
Filed under: Israel, Japan, logistics, Syndicated Industry News, United States
Filed under: Japan, missile defense, Syndicated Industry News
Filed under: Japan, Syndicated Industry News, United States
Filed under: Agusta Westland, Business Line, Companies, Contract Awards, Countries, Events, Finemeccanica, Japan, Military Aviation, production program, SAIC
SAIC (SAI) has been awarded a contract by the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) to provide software system to aid in sea mine clearance operations. The JSMDF contract did not have a value reported but is related to the purchase of the Mine Warfare and Environmental Decision Aids Library(MEDAL) system along with training support.
The JMSDF operates Augusta westland AW101 helicopters for this mission. The varient they use is referred to as the MCH-101.
MEDAL provides a system to design mine clearance missions as well as evaluation and training support. It contains data on water depth, bottom characteristics, current as well as seawater physical properties. A discussion of MEDAL may be found in this paper from the Commission on Geosciences, Environment and Resources.
The Japanese has equipped their MCH-101 with a set of sensors to support mine warfare including side scan sonar, laser detection and acoustic minesweepers. Under the agreement with AW the aircraft are assembled in Japan and major components are manufactured there. Japan as a maritime nation does face a mine warfare threat as demonstrated by the U.S. in 1944-1945 with an aerial mining program.
Photo courtesy of Jerry Gunner’s flickr photostream.
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Countries, IT, Japan, logistics, Press Releases
- Leading mobile giant JSAT MOBILE has secured IsatPhone Pro radio licence for Japan
- ·NTT DOCOMO delivers award-winning global handheld satellite phone in partnership with JSAT MOBILE
- IsatPhone Pro to debut on Japanese market in August 2012
SINGAPORE/LONDON – 26 July 2012 – Inmarsat (LSE:ISAT.L), the leading provider of global mobile satellite communications services, today announced the launch of its award-winning global satellite handheld IsatPhone Pro™ in Japan. The trusted IsatPhone Pro will be available to Japanese users from the beginning of August 2012.
Japan’s largest mobile carrier NTT DOCOMO, Inc. will deliver IsatPhone Pro to the Japanese market in partnership with JSAT MOBILE Communications Inc., a joint venture between Inmarsat and SKY Perfect JSAT Corporation which is Asia-Pacific’s largest satellite operator and is also Japan’s largest DTH broadcasting platform operator, SKY PerfecTV!
Inmarsat’s IsatPhone Pro offers the ultimate combination of global coverage on the world’s most reliable satellite network, a robust handset, and the longest battery life available in the market, with eight hours of talk time and up to a hundred hours of standby time.
In addition to essential satellite telephony, data, text and email messaging, IsatPhone Pro provides GPS location and social media services. IsatPhone Pro users can send their GPS location, and access Twitter from anywhere in the world using the handset’s short messaging service (SMS) function.
Eiichi Yoda, President and Chief Executive Officer, JSAT MOBILE said: “The interest in satellite phones for business continuity and disaster recovery has greatly increased after the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 2011. It is our pleasure to respond to customer demand by introducing Inmarsat’s IsatPhone Pro in Japan. We feel that this will be a very significant opportunity.”
The introduction of IsatPhone Pro addresses the growing demand among Japanese customers for an easy-to-use handheld satellite phone. The service complements NTT DOCOMO’s existing mobile satellite services portfolio, centred on Widestar and Widestar II.
Commenting on the announcement, Lizzie Greenwood, Asia-Pacific Director, Global Government, at Inmarsat said: “We are excited to partner with such a world-leader as NTT DOCOMO to launch IsatPhone Pro in Japan. This is a key market for Inmarsat and launching IsatPhone Pro here is an important milestone for us.”
IsatPhone Pro is poised to be a major enhancement to solutions for disaster preparedness, aid mobilisation, and other mission-critical communications requirements. “Mobile satellite communications provide vital back-up and lifeline connectivity. In times of emergency or when terrestrial communications are down, satcom services could help save lives and significantly mitigate the impact of natural catastrophes on business continuity,” she continued.
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Canada, Companies, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, development program, Events, Holland, Japan, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, production program, Restructuring, Services
The fall out from the controversial decision by the Canadian government to commit to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter without conducting a competition continues. The execution of the contract with Lockheed Martin (LMT) and the U.S. has been placed on hold as a new group outside the traditional defense procurement organization re-examines the contracting process.
The latest fall out from the Auditor report released earlier this year is that the Government underestimated the total cost of the program by $10 billion. Rather then then fixed costs being in the $15 billion range they are actually close to $25 billion. This is because ten years of operational costs (training, personnel, fuel, etc) were not included in the original estimate.
With the current issues it is not inconceivable that Canada could re-start their procurement process. This may lead to a new competition for the contract to replace the current CF-18 fighters that could include multiple competitors like the Eurofighter Typhoon, the Dassault Rafale and American aircraft like Boeing’s (BA) F/A-18.
The loss of 65 aircraft to the F-35 program is a small part of its over 2,000 planned deliveries but the loss of Canada’s participation would be a blow to the whole concept of the program with its shared development, production and operational cost. If Canada reconsiders then other nations who have hinted they could might follow. This could include Japan and the Netherlands both of whom have questions about the cost increases and schedule delays facing the program as a whole.
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Canada, Companies, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, Department of Defense, development program, Events, Holland, Japan, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, production program, Services, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy
Canada like many of the U.S. allied nations that purchased U.S. fighter aircraft in the 80′s is facing the need to upgrade their forces. They have used the CF-18 now for several years. They like others joined the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program early on providing R&D funds for the new aircraft. In 2010 the Conservative government decided to go ahead and commit to the production part of the contract with plans to buy 65 of the advanced fighters from Lockheed Martin (LMT). The move was controversial with the opposition ending up forcing a vote of no confidence in the government over the decision.
The Conservatives did well in the following election and actually increased their hold in Parliament.
The JSF program has seen major schedule slips as well as cost increases. This is why it is controversial in Canada, the U.S. and other potential buying nations. The U.S. has recently announced in their upcoming budget plans to reduce the annual buys of the aircraft in order to save money. This will stretch out the delivery times and further increase the price of the aircraft. Their also continue to be nagging technical problems common in any development program that has restricted testing and training.
Now there are reports coming out of Canada that it may be reconsidering their plans to buy the JSF. In testimony to Parliament defense officials stressed that they are still intending to buy the aircraft but there is no contract and they could leave the program if they wanted to. Canada has already stated that they will not spend more then they currently plan on the JSF which could lead to reduced numbers if the prices continue to increase.
If Canada does not buy the F-35 they will be faced with deciding between a variety of current aircraft. These include the Boeing (BA) F/A-18, Eurofighter Typhoon and France’s Rafale. The U.S. remains committed to the program and it will replace the F-16, F/A-18, and other aircraft.
If Canada does leave it would be a blow to the program and might encourage other purchasers like Holland and Japan to reconsider their choice.
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Congress, Contract Awards, Countries, Department of Defense, Events, Federal Budget Process, IT, Japan, logistics, Military Aviation, Restructuring, Services, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy
For several years the U.S. and Japanese governments have been working on moving a majority of the U.S. military based on Okinawa to Guam. This is to reduce their presence and potentially provide better training facilities. The move was going to be jointly funded by the two countries. One sticking point has been relocating the main Marine air base on the island which under the current plans will stay.
The Navy has been issuing contracts to build the new facilities on Guam which will include not only barracks but support capability such as a hospital, larger port, and the myriad things needed to support thousands of Marines, Sailors and Airmen and their families. The estimated cost of the move is close to $12 billion.
Right now though the move is under discussion and potential revision. This meant in the FY12 budget the Navy was specifically prevented from obligating anymore of the money from Japan. This meant that it has had to cancel two large contracts that were intended to be funded with that money.
The largest contract was an omnibus one, Mamizu Multiple Award Construction Contract, which would have allowed the Navy to issue orders to build facilities where the Marine headquarters were going to be. The other was for construction of a clinic.
The two governments have been working on this moved for several years. The fact that it remains unresolved despite much of the planning and work done in the last decade is not surprising. The presence of the U.S. on Okinawa has been a burden in the mind of the islanders and they would like all of it to leave. The relocation of the airbase has become a key sticking point and has not shown signs of resolution.
Even so eventually the U.S. will move a great deal of their infrastructure and personnel from Okinawa. The work on Guam will eventually get done and contracts issued and completed.
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Contract Awards, Countries, crime, Events, Japan, Military Aviation, missile defense, production program, Suspensions
The issue of fraud, waste and abuse has been a constant in defense contracting since the first piece of equipment was sold to a soldier. It could be rotten food in the Civil War, poorly made weapons or just simple overcharging or substituting inferior work for what the contract requires. Even in this day of lawyers, strong contracts, inspections and high technology these issues still occur as people look for ways to get more money out of their customers. In Japan the second largest defense contractor, Mitsubishi Electric (TSE) is now facing a ban for falsely inflating contract costs.
Reportedly not only the defense ministry has suspended the company but also the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and the Cabinet Satellite Intelligence Center will also stop doing business with Mitsubishi Electric. The company is making different things related to the country’s space program for JAXA and developing a intelligence satellite for the Intelligence Center.
The company has been found artificially increasing the number of workers and hours billed for on a contract to produce the Type 03 surface-to-air missile. This is a vehicle mounted system that uses IR and radar guidance and reportedly has a range of about 50,000 meters.
In 2010 Mitsubishi Electric was working on over $1.5 billion in contracts for Japan making missiles, electronics and other equipment. The suspension currently means that it cannot get new work. A further inspection of other contracts is expected to begin in the near term.
The suspension is it last a significant length of time will affect the company as it will limit opportunities for new work. The company may also see it paying money back to the government and fines and charges that could affect the bottom line. Long term it will have to remain as a viable contractor for Japan due to the type of work it does and the requirements of the armed forces. Unfortunately in this time of very few defense contractors it is hard to ban or suspend permanently any one company.
Japan has not been immune to these problems. In 2010 the Japanese Air Self-Defense Force who most likely contracted for the Type 03 was investigated and many officers and officials charged with bid rigging and bribery. Bribes were being used to steer contracts for office equipment and supplies to preferred vendors.
These cases illustrate that when large amounts of money are involved there is a great deal of temptation to try and make profit and get rich off of it in ways that short change the customer, tax payer and the user.
Filed under: Business Line, Companies, Congress, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, Department of Defense, development program, Events, Federal Budget Process, FMS, GE, Japan, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, Pratt & Whitney, production program, Rolls-Royce, Services, Turkey, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Navy, UTC
The F-35 will continue production in FY12 and FY13. The Pentagon has gone ahead and ordered the FY12 buy from Lockheed Martin (LMT) for another 30 or so aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, Marines and Navy as well as various foreign partners. This contract was awarded in December. The full production buy follows the advance procurement purchase made last year to support the long lead items for the latest production batch of the advanced fighter. The future of the program may get more interesting depending on how big a cut the Pentagon needs to make in the FY13 and out. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the biggest acquisition program in history if all parts of it are executed coming in at well over a trillion dollars for production and support over the program’s lifetime. In order to save funding cuts to this total investment might become easy.
As part of the F-35 production there has to be engines and now that the fight between the F-135 manufactured by Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTX), and the alternate engine from General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) is over those orders need to go to Pratt.
This means that last week as part of the upcoming advanced procurement for future aircraft P&W received a contract worth almost $200 million to support the engine production for 37 F-35 for the U.S., Italy and Australia.
The F-35 despite the fact that the budget wars about to affect the Pentagon may seriously change the program has had a few good weeks. First, Japan decided to buy it to replace some of their F-15 aircraft. Turkey also decided to buy two of the aircraft from a potential order of 100.
The contracts could be worth billions to Lockheed Martin and its supporting contractors as well aid the U.S. by decreasing the price of their aircraft. Every F-35 sold to another country will help keep production quantities up and prices down.
Overall the F-35 forms the core of the U.S. plans to modernize its aircraft fleets. Cuts in its quantities will only mean a requirement for older aircraft to fly longer at greater cost or reduced capability for the United States. This means despite the potential for reductions in U.S. defense spending the F-35 will remain a large part of the budget for the next several years.
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Companies, Congress, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, development program, Events, Japan, Lockheed Martin, Military Aviation, production program, Services
The Japanese government announced overnight that they have chosen the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter manufactured by Lockheed Martin (LMT) to be their new fighter aircraft. The advanced aircraft will replace some of the F-15J fighters that have been in service since the Eighties. The F-35 was in competition with Boeing’s (BA) F/A-18 and Eurofighter’s Typhoon aircraft.
Japan joins the list of foreign partners in the the program which is the largest acquisition program in history. Along with the United States the F-35 will also be used by the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia and Norway. It is designed to replace the majority of the F-16, F/A-18 and AV-8 aircraft used by these countries as well as the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps.
Ultimately the F-35 will be built in the thousands and serve until the middle of this century.
As with many of the purchasing countries Japanese industry will be able to help build parts and components of the F-35 and assist in the assembly if a deal can be worked out. This approach worked out well for the F-16 and the F-35 is trying to mirror that. Some of the buyers also invested their own R&D funds up front for the aircraft.
The F-35 program has seen struggles with its costs and schedule since its inception. Currently the U.S. has ordered five production lots of the aircraft but a recent assessment found more issues that will have to be worked out through development indicating that there remains a great deal of concurrent risk with the program.
Photo from ngotoh’s flickr photostream.
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Companies, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Countries, development program, Events, Federal Budget Process, Japan, Lockheed Martin, logistics, Military Aviation, missile defense, production program, Proposal, Raytheon, Restructuring, Spain
It is possible if a Service does not change a basic system or design for several decades for one company to dominate that program receiving the majority of the revenue and earnings from it. The U.S. Navy introduced anti-air warfare cruisers in the late 1970′s equipped with the new AEGIS weapon system as a major upgrade to its ship based air defense network. The AEGIS weapon system comprises the radars, software, command and control system as well as the missile and its launcher. The original version of the AEGIS was developed and produced by General Electric (GE).
In the early 1990′s Martin Marietta purchased that part of GE when the system had been in production and use for almost twenty years. By that time the Navy had completed production of the CG-47 class cruisers and was installing the system onto the DDG-51 destroyers. Martin Marietta was soon merged with Lockheed to form Lockheed Martin (LMT) who have been the prime contractor ever since. The U.S. Navy has purchased over 40 CG-47 and 50 DDG-51 although not all remain in use. The DDG-51 remains in production.
The AEGIS systems has also been sold to Japan and Spain.
The AEGIS weapon system has undergone incremental upgrades over the years most importantly to integrate Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) capability and using the STANDARD Missile-3 designed to conduct exp-atmospheric intercepts of missiles. All of this has added up to years of funding worth tens of billions of dollars for Lockheed.
Now the Navy is considering opening up the core contract to competition so that Lockheed may lose its hold on the business. This of course is attracting a great deal of interest from other large defense contractors as the initial contract will be worth a decent amount but down the road the contract could be worth billions.
Boeing (BA) and Raytheon (RTN) reportedly are considering submitting bids for the contract. Both have expertise in radar and missiles from a variety of other programs although Raytheon makes the STANDARD Missile used by U.S. Navy and other countries for the air and ballistic missile defense program which is part of the AEGIS system. Boeing has experience designing, integrating and operating the Ground Based Missile Defense (GMD) system based in Alaska.
The Navy of course is hoping for a better price for its support believing that competition will aid them in getting this. In the time of projected massive defense cuts competition will help the military save money in the future.
This will be major win for the company that either keeps the contract or acquires the work from Lockheed. Competition if the other companies believe they can do the work and win it should be quite fierce.
Photo from Surface Forces Flickr photostream.
Boeing, US Navy Deliver Proposal to Equip Japan Air Self Defense Force with Advanced Super Hornets — Press Release
Filed under: Boeing, Business Line, Companies, Countries, Events, FMS, Japan, Military Aviation, Press Releases, production program, Services
Boeing, US Navy Deliver Proposal to Equip Japan Air Self Defense Force with Advanced Super Hornets
- Super Hornets would include world’s most advanced air combat radar, designed-in stealth
- Japanese manufacturers could benefit from design and production opportunities
TOKYO, Sept. 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Boeing (NYSE: BA) and the U.S. Navy have delivered a proposal to the government of Japan offering the advanced F/A-18E Super Hornet Block II to become the Japan Air Self Defense Force’s (JASDF) next premier fighter aircraft. The F/A-18E Block II is the United States’ newest operational and combat-proven fighter aircraft. Japan issued a Request for Proposal for its F-X fighter competition on April 13, with a deadline of Sept. 26.
“The Super Hornet is the world’s most advanced multirole fighter and its selection would provide the Japan Air Self Defense Force with new, unprecedented capability,” said Boeing Japan President Mike Denton. “The Super Hornet can provide the government of Japan with guaranteed pricing and a guaranteed delivery timeline, while equipping the JASDF with superior multirole capability for the defense of Japan.
“Having conducted business in Japan for more than 50 years, Boeing is excited about the extensive technical design and manufacturing opportunities the Super Hornet would bring to many areas of Japanese industry,” added Denton.
The advanced Super Hornet version offered to Japan is based on the F/A-18E/F model operated around the globe by the U.S. Navy. The Royal Australian Air Force is also procuring the aircraft and has taken delivery of 20 F/A-18Fs at its base in Amberley, Queensland. Four additional Super Hornets will be delivered to Australia this year.
“We believe the Super Hornet is an optimal solution for the operational requirements of the Japan Air Self Defense Force,” said Boeing Military Aircraft President Chris Chadwick. “While the competitor aircraft specialize in either air-to-air or air-to-ground operations, the Super Hornet is a true multirole fighter, with the proven operational capability to seamlessly conduct air dominance or precision strike missions across the combined air, ground, maritime and electronic battlespace.”
The Boeing Super Hornet is a multirole aircraft, able to perform virtually every mission in the tactical spectrum, including air superiority, day/night strike with precision-guided weapons, fighter escort, close air support, suppression of enemy air defenses, maritime strike, reconnaissance, forward air control and tanker missions. The Super Hornet Block II provides the most advanced strike fighter capability available. With date-certain deliveries, cost-certain production and proven combat capability, the Super Hornet is the low-risk, high-end multirole fighter solution for the United States and its global defense partners. Boeing has delivered more than 460 Super Hornets to the U.S. Navy and the Royal Australian Air Force. Every Super Hornet produced has been delivered ahead of schedule and on budget.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Defense, Space & Security (www.boeing.com/bds) is one of the world’s largest defense, space and security businesses specializing in innovative and capabilities-driven customer solutions, and the world’s largest and most versatile manufacturer of military aircraft. Headquartered in St. Louis, Boeing Defense, Space & Security is a $32 billion business with 64,000 employees worldwide. Follow us on Twitter: @BoeingDefense.