24 Februari 2018

Japan May Buy up to 40 Vertical Takeoff F-35B Fighters which Operated from Izumo Class Ship

24 Februari 2018

F-35B VTOL fighter aircraft (image : MilitaryLeak)

Japan may buy up to 40 vertical takeoff F-35B fighters

Japan’s Yomiuri Shimbun reported in a scoop last week that the government may buy up to 40 F-35B vertical takeoff stealth fighters from the US that could operate from helicopter carriers, island bases and commercial airports.

“The government is considering operating F-35B fighter jets from about fiscal 2026, in an effort to utilize airports on remote islands and thereby improve the nation’s capability to defend the isles,” the newspaper said in a February 12 story.

The F-35B is the maritime version of the advanced US warplane that can perform vertical take-off and landings (VTOL) from the decks of warships.

The Yomiuri quoted government sources as saying that Tokyo is also weighing whether to deploy the F-35Bs aboard Izumo-class Maritime Self-Defense Force’s “destroyers” which carry helicopters and are built as de facto aircraft carriers.

The US military already operates F-35B squadrons in Japan. And the Japanese government is already buying 42 F-35A standard takeoff fighter jets to replace older-generation US fighters like the F-15 and F-4 Phantom.

“As for the F-35B, the government is planning to indicate the number of aircraft to be procured in the next Medium Term Defense Program, which is to be compiled at the end of this year. It is also mulling including related expenses in the fiscal 2019 budget plan, with a view to starting the delivery of F-35Bs from around fiscal 2024,” the Yomiuri cited its sources as saying. (ATimes)

Izumo class ship (photo : Japan MoD)

MSDF helicopter flattop Izumo designed as aircraft carrier

Despite the Defense Ministry's denial that the helicopter carrier Izumo, launched in 2015, was planned to be refitted into an aircraft carrier, former Maritime Self-Defense Force executives confirmed that that is how the blueprints were drawn up.

“It is only reasonable to design (the Izumo) with the prospect of possible changes of the circumstances in the decades ahead,” a then MSDF executive told The Asahi Shimbun. “We viewed that whether the Izumo should be actually refitted could be decided by the government.”

The former executive said a consensus was reached privately among the MSDF that the Izumo should be considered for conversion into an aircraft carrier. But the MSDF couldn't explain the need publicly due to the government's view that aircraft carriers capable of launching large-scale attacks are equivalent to the military capability prohibited by the war-renouncing Article 9 of the Constitution.

Ever since the Izumo's construction, experts both in and outside Japan have pointed out the possibility of turning it into a full-fledged aircraft carrier.

However, the Defense Ministry publicly denied any plan to deploy fighter jets with strike capabilities on the Izumo and contended that it was not an aircraft carrier.

The ministry has since done an abrupt about-face and now is mulling the possibility of refitting the vessel into an aircraft carrier.

Such a reversal has inevitably raised suspicions that the ministry had this plan in mind from the beginning.

Refitting the Izumo, the Maritime Self-Defense Force's largest vessel, into an aircraft carrier had been considered since late 2000 to bolster the nation's defenses against China’s increasing maritime advances around Japan’s southwestern islands, according to the MSDF executives.

Equipped with a flat deck from bow to stern, helicopters can land on and take off off from the five spots of the flight deck at a time. The Izumo's basic design was formulated from 2006 through 2008.

F-35B VTOL fighter aircraft (photo : LM)

In 2008, Chinese naval vessels and other warships passing through the waters between the main Okinawa island and Miyakojima island, which lies to the southwest, were spotted for the first time. At that time Chinese government vessels intruding on Japan’s territorial waters became common.

According to MSDF executives at that time, the MSDF saw the need to secure Japan’s competitive edge in the airspace to counter possible China’s maritime expansion in the East China Sea.

However, the runway at the Air Self-Defense Force Naha Base is the only one that allows ASDF aircraft to take off and land in and around Okinawa.

Therefore “the plan to construct the Izumo was settled with its future conversion in mind to prepare for any possible contingency of the unavailability of the ASDF Naha Base,” according to one of the executives.

In those days, the U.S. F-35B stealth fighters, which could take off and land vertically, were in development, leading to a design conception of the Izumo on the premise that it could be converted to handle landings and takeoffs of the F-35B and other aircraft, such as the Osprey transport aircraft.

The approximately 250-meter long Izumo’s elevator connecting the deck with the hangar was designed to accommodate the F-35B fighter, which measures about 15 meters in length and about 11 meters in width.

Paint that can withstand the exhaust heat generated from F-35 fighter jets during landings and takeoffs was selected for the deck of the Izumo. It has also been expected to retrofit the Izumo with a sloping deck for takeoffs, the former MSDF executives said.

If the Izumo is converted to enable landings and takeoffs of the F-35B, the vessel can be utilized to refuel U.S. stealth fighter jets anywhere in the world at any time, including during military emergencies under the new national security legislation.

Even if it is designated a “defensive” aircraft carrier or with some other terminology, the refitted Izumo would be a vessel capable of attacking enemy targets. (AsahiShimbun)

TNI AU Siapkan Penerbang dan Teknisi untuk Awaki Su-35

24 Februari 2018


Pesawat tempur Sukhoi Su-35 (photo : Vitaly Kuzmin)

ANGKASAREVIEW.COM – Kontrak pengadaan 11 jet tempur Sukhoi Su-35 dari Rusia telah ditandatangani oleh Kementerian Pertahanan. TNI Angkatan Udara pun menyiapkan penerbang dan teknisi untuk mengawakinya.

Kepala Dinas Penerangan TNI AU (Kadispenau) Marsma TNI Jemi Trisonjaya, M.Tr (Han) menyatakan, TNI AU sudah menyiapkan penerbang dan teknisi yang akan mengawaki Su-35. TNI AU saat ini menunggu koordinasi lebih lanjut untuk pengiriman mereka ke Rusia.

“Penerbang dan teknisi tentunya sudah dipersiapkan oleh TNI AU. Kami menunggu koordinasi lebih lanjut dari pimpinan, misalnya untuk pengiriman mereka ke Rusia guna mengikuti pendidikan di sana. Saat ini belum ada pengiriman personel TNI AU terkait hal itu ke Rusia,” ujar Kadispenau saat dihubungi Angkasa Review, Kamis (22/2/2018).

Jemi menambahkan, perencanaan dan pembahasan untuk mengawaki pesawat pengganti F-5E/F Tiger II Skadron Udara 14 Lanud Iswahjudi, sudah dilakukan jauh-jauh hari sambil menunggu keputusan dari Kementerian Pertahanan perihal pesawat yang akan dibeli.

Berhubung dalam beberapa tahun belakangan ini Skadron Udara 14 sudah tidak memiliki pesawat lagi (F-5E/F sudah dipenisunkan), maka para penerbang dan teknisinya pun dititipkan sementara ke satuan-satuan operasional lainnya. Beberapa penerbang ditempatkan di Skadron Udara 11 Lanud Sultan Hasanuddin, Makassar dan Skadron Udara 15 Lanud Iswahjudi, Madiun.

Menteri Pertahanan Ryamizard Ryacudu sebelumnya mengatakan, penandatanganan kontrak pengadaan Su-35 sudah selesai dilaksanakan.

“Sudah tanda tangan, selesai. Sebelas pesawat. Itu kan dibuat dulu. Bukan langsung-langsung. Dibuatnya satu tahun secara bertahap. Awal tahun depan sudah ada dua,” kata Menhan menjawab pertanyaan wartawan di Jakarta, Rabu (21/2/2018), sebagaimana ditayangkan oleh saluran CNNIndonesia tv.

Informasi penandatanganan kontrak pengadaan 11 pesawat Su-35 untuk TNI AU, awalnya disampaikan oleh Kepala Pusat Komunikasi Publik (Kapuskompublik) Kementerian Pertahanan Brgjen TNI Totok Sugiharto saat dikornfirmasi rilis.id. Totok mengatakan, penandatanganan kontrak pengadaan Su-35 telah dilaksanakan pada Rabu (14/2/2018).

(Angkasa Review)

Enam Pesawat Hawk dengan Rudal Maverick Latihan di Aceh

24 Februari 2018


Enam pesawat tiba di Lanud Iskandar Muda, Aceh (photo : Portal Komando)

Enam Pesawat Hawk Tiba Di Lanud Sultan Iskandar Muda

ACEH,.Sebanyak enam pesawat Hawk 100/200 Skadron Udara 12 Lanud Roesmin Nurjadin, Pekanbaru tiba di Lanud Sultan Iskandar Muda. Jumat (23/2). Kedatangan enam pesawat tempur TNI Angkatan Udara yang dipimpin Danskadud 12 Lanud Roesmin Letkol Pnb Adhi Safarul Akbar diterima langsung Danlanud Sultan Iskandar Muda Kolonel Nav Indrastanto Setiawan, S.Sos., beserta pejabat Lanud Sultan iskandar Muda.

Dijelaskan dalam rilis penerangan Lanud SIM, rencananya selama dua minggu, “Black Panther” sebutan Skadron Udara 12 Lanud Roesmin Nurjadin dengan pesawat Hawk 100/200 nya akan melaksanakan latihan tempur dengan menggunakan rudal Maverick dan dilanjutkan patroil pengamanan wilayah udara sekitaran provinsi Aceh.

Hawk 200 dengan rudal Maverick (photo : indonesian military)

 “Tentunya hal ini dilaksanakan sebagai tugas dan tanggung jawab TNI Angkatan Udara dan sarana meningkatkan kemampuan para penerbang TNI Angkatan Udara,” ujar Danlanud Sultan Iskandar Muda. Mengenai patrol udara, lanjutnya, pengamanan wilayah udara sangatlah penting bagi keutuhan NKRI dalam rangka menjaga dan mengamankan pulau terluar.

Selain itu, tambahnya, kegiatan latihan dan patrol pengamanan wilayah udara bukan hanya meningkatkan kemampuan serta profesionalisme Skadron Udara 12 Lanud Roesmin Nurjadin saja, melainkan juga Lanud Sultan Iskandar Muda dalam mendukung operasi penerbangan. “Mari kita berikan yang terbaik agar hasil yang dicapai maksimal,” tutupnya.

IMI Systems will Upgrade the Royal Thai Army M-163 VADS

24 Februari 2018

M-163 Vulcan Air Defense System (VADS) of the Royal Thai Army after upgrade (all photos : Thai Military)

Ramat Hasharon, Israel – IMI Systems will upgrade the venerable M-163 Vulcan Air Defense System (VADS) of the Royal Thai Army.


According to the Thai Military and Asian Region magazine, the upgrade will consist of laser rangefinder to replace AN/VPS-2, video feed, thermal imaging sight (uncooled) and some new functions including remote-controlled operation, all-weather operation capabilities as well as automatic target tracking.


Using linkless feed system the, M168 20mm autocannon rotary gun can fires at 3,000 rounds per minute in short bursts of 10, 30, 60, or 100 rounds or in a continuous fire mode at a rate of 1,000 rounds per minute.

(IMI Systems)

23 Februari 2018

Indonesian Navy to Receive Four ScanEagle UAVs in 2018

23 Februari 2018

The Indonesian Navy will receive four ScanEagle UAVs in mid-2018. Equipment is provided under a grant from the US government, which seeks to build maritime surveillance capabilities of Southeast Asian countries (photo : Strategy Page)

The Indonesian Navy (Tentara Nasional Indonesia – Angkatan Laut: TNI-AL) is currently anticipating the delivery of four Insitu ScanEagle surveillance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) from the US government, a source from the service’s headquarters told Jane’s on 23 February.

The UAV system and its associated equipment and launchers are provided under a grant by the US government under a capacity building programme for Southeast Asian navies known as the Maritime Security Initiative (MSI).

The MSI was first announced by then US secretary of defense Ashton Carter at the 2015 iteration of the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore. The initiative seeks to improve maritime capabilities of partner countries in the region, namely Malaysia, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Vietnam.

Specifically, for Indonesia, the MSI seeks to improve the country’s maritime patrol capabilities, ISR integration, and equipment maintenance capacity. The aim is to ensure that Indonesia has the capacity to adequately safeguard its maritime territories and economic resources, and contribute to regional security and stability, according to a note on the programme from the US government’s website.

Besides the TNI-AL, other Indonesian beneficiaries of the MSI programme include the country’s coastguard, which will receive assistance in organisational development and technical skill training from the US government.

The ScanEagle UAV can be equipped with a range of payload types including electro-optical imagers, long-wave infrared sensors, and X-band radars. Information on the type of sensors that will come along with the Indonesian UAVs is currently not available.

(Jane's)

Boeing Completes First Stage in Major Upgrade for Australia’s E-7A Fleet

23 Februari 2018


RAAF E-7A Wedgetail (photo : Airbus Defence)


The first phase of upgrades to Australia’s E-7A fleet has been completed, paving the way for a suite of world-first modifications to enhance its capability as a key military asset for the Australian Defence Force and allied partners. 

Under the Wedgetail AIR 5077 Phase 5A program, Boeing Defence Australia is leading a global Boeing team to deliver structural and software upgrades to the Royal Australian Air Force’s Airborne Early Warning and Control (AEW&C) fleet. 

The on-time completion of the first stage of Phase 5A equipped the fleet of six aircraft with satellite position broadcast technology and the latest version of a traffic collision avoidance system. These upgrades will keep the aircraft compliant with mandated changes in the civilian environment. 

The Wedgetail upgrade program is a key element of the Australian Defence Force’s (ADF) strategy of becoming an integrated fifth-generation force, said Trevor Smith, Phase 5A project manager for the ADF. 

“The changes being made to Australia’s Wedgetail fleet will allow us to share large amounts of strategic and tactical data more easily in a battle space environment,” Smith said. “Being able to quickly exchange information, such as the location of threats, with our allies and across different platforms means we can combine potent capabilities more effectively during joint operations. 

“The Wedgetail is the centerpiece of our national air defense capability, and it continues to be a critical asset in protecting our warfighters in missions and exercises overseas.” 

BDA’s general manager of Intelligence, Surveillance & Reconnaissance Scott Carpendale praised the efforts of the global team in delivering the first round of upgrades on schedule. 

“The Wedgetail program demonstrates the strength we bring to our international customers when we operate as one Boeing,” said Carpendale. 

“Our Australian team worked closely with Airborne Surveillance Command & Control organisation in Oklahoma City to deliver the updates and that relationship allowed us to draw on the expertise of our people across the globe. 


“Phase 5A is delivering world-class support and global AEW&C capability for our Australian customer and they are extremely happy with the result.” 

(Boeing)

PH Must Learn to Produce Own CMS, Other Military Equipment

23 Februari 2018


Thales TACTICOS CMS (photo : Thales Nederland)

MANILA -- The Philippines must produce its own combat management system and other related defense equipment in order to protect its military capabilities.

"The only way we can do that is to make our own. We produce our own CMS, everything, so nobody will know about it," Department of National Defense (DND) Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said during Monday's Senate hearing about the Frigate Acquisition Project (FAP).

He also admitted that as long as the Philippines sub-contracts ships and other military equipment from other nations, there is nothing the country can do to prevent others from knowing about its capabilities.


Thales TACTICOS CMS (photo : Thales Nederland)


The FAP has a contract of PHP18 billion including the weapon systems and munitions.

Earlier, the DND chief said that using the Thales Tacticos CMS would shoot the price of the frigates by USD7 million per ship or USD14 million for the two vessels.

In Monday's hearing, Lorenzana defended the decision of Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) to pick Hanwha as the supplier of the CMS for its two frigates over Thales Tacticos, the manufacturer preferred by former PN flag-officer-in-command Vice Admiral Ronald Joseph Mercado.


Hanwha CMS (photo : kookbang)

While acknowledging that Thales Tacticos is a good CMS brand, the DND chief said the Hanwha CMS being selected to fit the Navy's first two missile-firing capable frigates are equally capable.

"We are not buying a lesser product. we are buying an equally capable product to be put into our ship(s)," he added.

Also, Lorenzana emphasized that Mercado's relief last December was brought about by the latter's refusal to comply with two of his memorandum on the CMS and pronouncements that he will have the project cancelled if Thales Tacticos was not selected to supply the above-mentioned equipment.


Hanwha CMS (photo : kookbang)

"(The reason for his relief as FOIC was) dahil dalawang beses na memo ko hindi n’ya sinusunod tapos, sa mga conference niya (sinasabi) na pag hindi (na)tuloy ang (Thales) Tacticos, ika-cancel niya ang FAP (The reason for his relief as FOIC was he disobeyed my memos twice and he says in his conferences that he will have the FAP cancelled if Thales Tacticos will not be selected)," the DND chief pointed out.

Also, Lorenzana said that it was Mercado who had the specification "Tactical Data Link 16" or the ability to transmit and receive data from various platforms in a bid to justify the preference for the Thales Tacticos CMS. 

(PNA)