Monday, December 08, 2008

First Production DM2A4 Torpedo to German Navy

First Production DM2A4 Torpedo to German Navy
(NSI News Source Info) December 9, 2008: Atlas Elektronik sets a new standard in torpedo technology: the first series-manufactured unit of the German heavyweight torpedo DM2A4 left the production facility in Wedel near Hamburg on Wednesday, 3 December 2008, and was symbolically handed over to the German Navy.
At the ceremonial rollout of the first series torpedo, the Chairman of the ATLAS Management Board, Dr. Ralf Kube, spoke to about 100 representatives of the German Navy, the Federal Ministry of Defence, the Federal Office of Defence Technology and Procurement (BWB) and other authorities as well as ATLAS personnel: “ATLAS is setting a new standard in torpedo technology. With the DM2A4 for the German Navy, the world’s most modern and effective torpedo is now going into series production. Once more, ATLAS has shown that it is one of the internationally leading systems suppliers for naval electronics and naval weapons.
The staff members of ATLAS have every right to be proud of this achievement in again proving to be a valuable partner for the German Navy.” On behalf of the Federal Minister of Defence, Ministerialdirigent Christian Fischer, Head of German Naval Armaments, thanked all those who had participated in the development and testing of the DM2A4.
In his address, he mentioned the extreme technical challenges ATLAS ELEKTRONIK had faced in the development of the DM2A4, emphasizing that, despite the difficulties that were encountered, the German authorities had never lost [their] confidence in either the company or the product.
With the words “The German Navy now commands the world’s most modern torpedo for the world’s most modern non-nuclear submarines, namely the class 212A,” Mr. Fischer formally handed over the first series torpedo to the Director of Naval Armaments and Logistics, Rear Admiral Hoops.
Rear Admiral Henning Hoops of the Naval Office in Rostock declared the U 212A weapon system to be complete and ready for action: “With the torpedo DM2A4 SEAHAKE, the most modern conventional submarine of the class 212A with its great detection range will also carry the most powerful heavyweight torpedo.” Rear Admiral Henning Hoops (Director of Naval Armaments, Rostock), Ministerialdirigent Christian Fischer (Head of Division Naval Armaments, Federal Ministry of Defence), Dr. Ralf Kube (Chairman of the Management Board, ATLAS ELEKTRONIK) at the symbolic handover of the heavyweight torpedo DM2A4 to the German Navy (from left) The DM2A4 is the new high-performance torpedo for German submarines of the 212A class; it differs to an appreciable degree from the predecessor model, the DM2A3.
The innovations include the extremely powerful electrical propulsion system, the control and data transmission via fibre-optic instead of copper cable, the replacement of the mechanical gyro by a strap-down system using fibre-optic gyros, and the wake homing sensors. Ralf Kube went on to say: “With the DM2A4, ATLAS has achieved a quantum leap in torpedo technology. The possible battle range, the speed, the considerably increased resistance against torpedo countermeasures and the decisive enhancement in agility are unmatched worldwide. This success was only possible through the close and constant teamwork between ATLAS and its partners at the German Navy, the Federal Ministry of Defence, the Federal Office of Defence Technology and Procurement, and the Bundeswehr Technical Centre for Ships and Naval Weapons.”
All torpedoes for the German Navy are scheduled to be delivered by October 2010. The Turkish Navy has also procured DM2A4 torpedoes and has already introduced them on its submarines. BACKGROUND NOTES: The new torpedo type replaces the DM2A3, which was introduced into service in the early nineties. Approval for deployment in the German Navy was granted in 2007, following successful test firings in the Mediterranean in cooperation with the Italian Navy. Development had commenced in 1997.
Besides specific performance requirements for speed and range, the new torpedo must have a service lifetime of at least 30 years and its technology must be available or replaceable over the entire period. In addition to the high reliability (to keep the life cycle costs as low as possible), it had to be designed for possible adaptation to meet new requirements, e.g. in order to react to new anti-torpedo methods. For this reason, ATLAS decided to implement a modular structure. With a view to economical procurement and operation, ATLAS developed a family of torpedoes with scalable capabilities. Here the objective was to tailor the costs for the procurement and use of the DM2A4 to the requirements of the corresponding navy in an optimum way and, at the same time, to allow for performance upgrades with economical retrofits.
This goal was achieved through a modular battery concept in conjunction with propellers optimized for the relevant configuration. Not only can the torpedoes be fitted with two to four batteries, the navies can configure the torpedoes themselves. Even with only one battery, the DM2A4 already attains the performance level that is usual today for electrical heavyweight torpedoes in respect of speed and range.
The whole DM2A4 torpedo family distinguishes itself by being future-proof for several decades to come. This feature was achieved by the consistent software implementation on modern processors of all the major functions in the torpedo. In particular, this includes the essential procedures for guidance, search and attack.

OTO-Melara 105mm Turret Tested on Pandur II

OTO-Melara 105mm Turret Tested on Pandur II
(NSI News Source Info) December 9, 2008: The Templar knights were strange characters indeed: half monks, half soldiers, ascetics and bankers, individually poor yet extremely rich as an order, they originally set out to win back Jerusalem and the Holy Sepulchre for Christianity. Their principal headquarters could be found in the city of Tomar, on the banks of the river Tago, inside a convent-castle.
Just a few kilometres from Tomar is Poligono di Santa Margarida, a large basin surrounded by low hills, where the blue of spring skies is obscured by low-hanging rain clouds which continuously creep in from the Atlantic and discharge themselves upon the first high grounds of the Spanish-Portuguese border.
The vegetation is reminiscent of Sardinia, with high eucalyptus trees which impregnate the air with their fragrance and shrubs of broom and pennyroyal. The red, clayey soil retains the heavy rains in large puddles.
This was the setting for the mobility and firing tests of the 105mm HITFACT turret mounted on the 8X8 Pandur II armoured vehicle, manufactured by the Austrian company Steyr and already used by the Portuguese army in a troop transport version.
Excellent results were achieved in all conditions, from stationary vehicle to stationary target to the more difficult situation of a moving vehicle shooting at a moving target. Spectacular scenes were also provided by the mobility demonstration, which included clearing a mud-filled trench and the steep slope of a dried-up gravelly riverbed, finished off with its return amidst sprays of muddy water.
The turret represents a brand new concept in some principal subsystems (electrical control systems, new, special barrel steel, the latest generation of fire control systems and recoil brakes) and is the fruit of close on 50 years experience in the area of 105mm guns and follows the production of approximately 500 Centauro turrets.
There to witness the tests was the National Armaments Director, a number of representatives from the Portuguese army and Defence Ministry, the Italian Military Attaché and representatives from the Italian Defence Ministry, not to mention an official American observer. The final day was dedicated to the press and local television channels, which were eager to find out all the technical details and the system’s special features.

Korean Air to Develop Reconnaissance UAV

Korean Air to Develop Reconnaissance UAV (NSI News Source Info) December 9, 2008: The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has selected Korean Air as the main developer of an indigenous medium-altitude unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to start missions after 2016, a military source said Sunday. Korean Air, the country's largest airline, won the bid over the Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI), which has dominated the country's military aircraft programs, the source told The Korea Times. DAPA will announce the winner next month, he said.
The national-flag carrier, with the technological help of a foreign defense firm, will develop and integrate the spy plane's fuselage and other related systems, including a ground-control station and mission equipment package (MEP), in cooperation with the state-run Agency for Defense Development (ADD), said the source.
They will conduct preliminary research and development between 2008 and 2011 before developing and integrating systems between 2012 and 2016, he said. The proposed UAV will be designed to perform missions as high as 50,000 feet (some 15 kilometers) for more than 24 hours and will have similar specifications to the MQ-1 Predator medium-altitude, long-endurance UAV of the U.S. Air Force, ADD officials said.
About 450 billion won will be spent to build the surveillance aircraft, they said. “With the successful bidding for the medium-altitude UAV project, Korean Air is expected to get the upper hand in building the nation's unmanned aircraft systems both for civilian and military use down the road,'' the source said, asking not to be named.
Korean Air's successful bidding was attributable to its better aircraft-making and system integration capabilities than those of KAI, said DAPA officials. A 2006 revision of the law governing the designation of defense manufacturers was also a key reason for the airline winning the competition, they said.
Previously, those firms designated by the government as defense manufacturers got preferential treatment in bidding for state arms acquisition or development programs. They were mostly small- and medium-sized firms.
The revision, however, allows any companies, including conglomerates, to vie for such programs as long as they have strong capacity to build the weapons systems concerned. The revised law is to be put into effect at the beginning of next month after a two-year grace period, according to DAPA.
Earlier this year, the Ministry of National Defense hinted that it would push harder for developing an indigenous UAV rather than purchasing the Global Hawk high-flying UAV from the United States.
Senior ministry officials said that's because of not only budget constraints but also the Lee Myung-bak administration's pursuit of cost-effective management of defense assets based on closer cooperation with the U.S. military. Seoul had sought to buy Global Hawks by 2011 to strengthen independent intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities for its planned takeover of wartime operational control from the United States in 2012.
The Global Hawk can survey vast areas with near pinpoint accuracy from as high as 65,000 feet for up to 35 straight hours. The per-unit price is $45 million to $60 million. The South Korean military is largely dependent on U.S. intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities over North Korea.
The U.S. Forces Korea operates several ISR systems, such as U2 reconnaissance and RC-12 surveillance aircraft. The U.S. KH-11 satellite is also a key system to help detect suspected activities in North Korea.
The satellite can detect an on-land object as small as 15 centimeters in length. South Korea's Air Force operates eight Baekdu and Geumgang reconnaissance planes, while the Army flies the domestically built RQ-101 Night Intruder and Israel's Searcher II UAVs with its frontline corps near the heavily fortified border with the North.

Pakistani Militants Torch Another Terminal Of Trucks For Western Forces

Pakistani Militants Torch Another Terminal Of Trucks For Western Forces
(NSI News Source Info) December 8, 2008: Afghanistan-bound vehicles gutted by alleged militants on the outskirts of Peshawar, Pakistan on Monday, Dec. 8, 2008. A witness says suspected militants have attacked another terminal in northwest Pakistan for trucks ferrying supplies to NATO and U.S. forces in Afghanistan.
A man looks at Afghanistan-bound vehicles gutted by alleged militants on the outskirts of Peshawar, Pakistan on Monday, Dec. 8, 2008

USS Independence (LCS-2)

USS Independence (LCS-2) (NSI News Source Info) December 8, 2008: USS Independence (LCS-2), the class prototype for the Independence-class littoral combat ship, will be the sixth ship of the United States Navy to be named for the concept of independence. It is the design competitor produced by the General Dynamics consortium, in competition with the Lockheed Martin-designed USS Freedom, the prototype for the Freedom-class littoral combat ship. It is intended as a small assault transport with a variety of capabilities depending on the mission module installed. The ship is a trimaran design capable of over 40 knots (74 km/h/46 mph), and will probably be delivered to the US Navy in early 2009.

Russian Government Drafts $5Bln Rescue Plan For Defense Industry

Russian Government Drafts $5Bln Rescue Plan For Defense Industry (NSI News Source Info) MOSCOW - December 8, 2008: The Russian government has drafted a rescue package of 150 billion rubles ($5.4 billion) for the country's defense and industrial complex amid the ongoing global financial crisis, a business paper reported on Monday. According to Vedomosti, state-run hi-tech corporation Rostekhnologii and the United Aircraft Corporation are the main candidates for the government aid, with state companies receiving the funds through a rescue mechanism involving newly issued share purchases. Russia's Finance Ministry will submit proposals to the government this week on reforming the country's defense and industrial complex, Deputy Finance Minister Anton Siluanov who heads the inter-governmental commission to support the sector told Vedomosti. Deputy Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov told Vedomosti that the plan consists of five points: increasing advance payments, boosting funding for state defense orders and federal programs, subsidizing interest rates and providing state guarantees for loans, as well as preventing bankruptcies and issuing new shares and bonds in favor of the state. Siluanov said that around 50 billion rubles ($1.8 billion) would be set aside to subsidize interest rates, increase company capitalization and prevent bankruptcies, while 100 billion rubles ($3.6 billion) would be used to guarantee loans.

China Calls On US To Scrap Taiwan Weapons Deal

China Calls On US To Scrap Taiwan Weapons Deal (NSI News Source Info) BEIJING - December 8, 2008: China's defence minister called on the United States on Monday to drop a planned weapons sale to Taiwan, saying it threatened Sino-US defence cooperation, state media reported.
Minister Liang Guanglie also called on Washington to cease all military ties with Taiwan, during a meeting in Beijing with the visiting former chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, Richard Myers, local news agency said.
"The US arms sale to Taiwan has poisoned the sound atmosphere of bilateral military relations and endangered China's national security," Liang was quoted as telling Myers.

Dassault, India's Tata Sign Engineering Deal

Dassault, India's Tata Sign Engineering Deal (NSI News Source Info) PARIS - December 8, 2008: French aircraft manufacturer Dassault Aviation said on Monday it had signed a deal for the outsourcing of engineering services with India's Tata Technologies, the parent of engineering services company INCAT. The agreement will see INCAT provide Dassault with engineering services in several "critical domains" linked to the Indian Air Force's medium multi-role combat aircraft (MMRCA) programme, for which six manufacturers are competing. Dassault is offering its Rafale combat aircraft. Dassault said in a statement the MMRCA programme contains significant offset requirements -- a proportion of work linked to the contract must be given to Indian companies.