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July 27, 2021 | International, Aerospace

AeroVironment receives $15.9 million US Air Force UAS order

Puma 3 AE and Raven tactical unmanned aircraft system (UAS) orders include spares.

https://www.aerospacemanufacturinganddesign.com/article/aerovironment-receives-16million-us-air-force-uas-order/

On the same subject

  • Germany officially knocks F-35 out of competition to replace Tornado

    February 4, 2019 | International, Aerospace

    Germany officially knocks F-35 out of competition to replace Tornado

    By: Sebastian Sprenger COLOGNE, Germany ― Germany’s Ministry of Defence has officially ruled out the F-35 joint strike fighter as a choice to replace its aging Tornado fleet, Defense News has learned. An official from the ministry confirmed that the F-35 is not a finalist in the competition, which seeks a replacement for the 90-jet fleet. The news was first reported by German site AugenGeradeaus. The move is not altogether surprising. Berlin for some time has officially favored an upgraded version of the fourth-generation Eurofighter Typhoon, built by a consortium of Airbus, Leonardo and BAE Systems, as the Tornado replacement. The main argument is to keep European companies involved in building combat aircraft and, perhaps even more importantly, staying clear of disturbing Franco-German momentum in armaments cooperation. However, the decision leaves open the question of certification for nuclear weapons. The Typhoon is not certified to carry the American-made nuclear bombs that Germany, as part of its strategic posture, is supposed to be able to carry on its jets. Competing against the Typhoon is Boeing’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet. Before the German MoD confirmed that the F-35 was officially out of the running, Reuters on Thursday reported that the ministry was considering splitting the buy between the Typhoon and either the F-35 or Super Hornet. Ordering both the Typhoon and an American aircraft would make it easier to continue carrying out the NATO nuclear mission, while also lending support to the European industrial base. However, it could complicate logistics, adding more expense and forcing the German air force to maintain two supply chains. It is worth noting that despite complaints about the cost of keeping the ageing Tornados flying, keeping around a certain number of them always has been considered a painful, but not impossible, proposition among some defense experts. That is especially the case for the nuclear mission. “There does not have to be a nuclear Tornado replacement,” Karl-Heinz Kamp, president of the Federal Academy for Security Policy, a government think tank, told Defense News last August. He noted that any German government is acutely averse to the publicity surrounding Berlin’s would-be atomic bombers. “That’s why they will keep flying the Tornados, despite the price tag and despite having asked about a Eurofighter nuclear certification in Washington,” Kamp predicted at the time. German defense officials on Thursday evening stressed that no decisions had been made besides reducing the playing field to the FA-18 and the Eurofighter Typhoon. The Defense Ministry will request additional information from the respective manufacturers, Boeing and Airbus, on the issues of operations, economic viability and timing, these officials said. Germany’s decision appears to have come at the surprise of F-35 manufacturer Lockheed Martin, which was not told by the ministry of the imminent announcement. “We have not been officially notified of a decision on Germany’s future fighter,” Lockheed spokesman Mike Friedman said in an emailed response to a query. “The F-35 delivers unmatched value as the most capable and lowest life-cycle cost aircraft, while delivering the strongest long-term industrial and economic opportunities compared to any fighter on the market. As the foundation of NATO’s next generation of air power, the F-35 is the most advanced aircraft in the world today, and includes Electronic Attack capabilities well beyond any specialized fourth generation aircraft.” Valerie Insinna in Washington contributed to this report. https://www.defensenews.com/global/europe/2019/01/31/germany-officially-knocks-f-35-out-of-competition-to-replace-tornado/

  • Iridium Awarded 7-Year, $738.5 Million Contract by the U.S. Department of Defense

    September 18, 2019 | International, Aerospace

    Iridium Awarded 7-Year, $738.5 Million Contract by the U.S. Department of Defense

    MCLEAN, Va., Sept. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Iridium Communications Inc. (NASDAQ: IRDM) today announced that it has been awarded a $738.5 million, seven-year, fixed-price contract with the United States Department of Defense through the U.S. Air Force Space Command (AFSpC) to provide unlimited satellite services from its unique Low Earth Orbit (LEO) constellation.  Through what is known as the AFSpC's Enhanced Mobile Satellite Services (EMSS) program, Iridium will continue to deliver access to global secure and unsecure voice, broadcast, netted or Distributed Tactical Communications System (DTCS) and select other services for an unlimited number of DoD and associated DoD-approved subscribers.  With an unprecedented seven-year term, this contract serves as a testament to the ongoing value Iridium provides in support of the DoD's vision for an integrated satellite communications (SATCOM) enterprise and in recognition of the significant investments the company has made into its network over the past several years. Under the current fixed-price contract, the EMSS program has continuously increased its adoption and utilization of Iridium® services at a significant rate, while the capabilities delivered have also evolved over time from simple telephone voice and data to broadcast, multicast and other Internet of Things (IoT) services.  Over the course of the previous contract period, DoD subscribers grew from approximately 51,000 to more than 125,000, a 145 percent increase.  This growth in adoption has also resulted in increased collaboration between the government and Iridium's ecosystem of partners, bringing their expertise to further enhance the capabilities of the DoD's SATCOM portfolio.  "Iridium's EMSS contract serves as a model for how commercial operators can cost-effectively and efficiently deliver critical satellite managed services to the warfighter," said Scott Scheimreif, Executive Vice President of Government Programs, Iridium. "Iridium offers the DoD unrivaled access to its unique, operational, low-earth orbiting network of 66 cross-linked satellites. When you combine our unique network, our ecosystem of dedicated partners and an innovative, fixed-price, seven-year contract, you create an optimal environment for DoD and other USG program offices to effectively plan for and budget their programs, taking full advantage of the Iridium capability." Scheimreif continued, "The program has been a great example of partnership and innovation between industry and the DoD as Iridium continuously explores ways to meet their emerging requirements. When you combine this level of network transparency, collaboration and the ease of acquisition, it results in a significant win for the DoD and their users." In support of the EMSS program over the past 20 years, Iridium and the DoD have jointly developed an operational environment that provides the critical network transparency and collaboration to enable successful execution of the warfighter's mission. In fact, Iridium was one of the initial six industry participants in the Commercial Integration Cell (CIC) to engage with the U.S. Air Force's (USAF) Combined Space Operations Center (CSpOC) in an effort to improve information sharing and network situational awareness as the DoD continues its use of commercial satellite networks. This now includes the ongoing transition of EMSS, along with all commercial SATCOM services, from the Defense Information Systems Agency to the USAF. "Iridium's relationship with the U.S. government has been the model of what a public-private partnership should look like in the satellite industry," said Iridium CEO Matt Desch. "The U.S. government has made significant investment in Iridium over the years, and likewise, we have invested billions of dollars to ensure our network remains the premier reliable, mobile satellite service with a proven ability to be deployed anywhere in the world." Desch added, "While this new contract will see continued adoption of Iridium, it will also drive ongoing innovation through collaboration between the U.S. government, Iridium, industry partners and user communities." For more information about Iridium, visit: www.iridium.com About Iridium Communications Inc.  Iridium® is the only mobile voice and data satellite communications network that spans the entire globe.  Iridium enables connections between people, organizations and assets to and from anywhere, in real time.  Together with its ecosystem of partner companies, Iridium delivers an innovative and rich portfolio of reliable solutions for markets that require truly global communications.  The company has recently completed its next-generation satellite network and launched its new specialty broadband service, Iridium Certus®. Iridium Communications Inc. is headquartered in McLean, Va., U.S.A., and its common stock trades on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the ticker symbol IRDM.  For more information about Iridium products, services and partner solutions, visit www.iridium.com.   Forward Looking Statements Statements in this press release that are not purely historical facts may constitute forward-looking statements as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company has based these statements on its current expectations and the information currently available to us. Forward-looking statements in this press release include statements regarding the value, term, services and benefits of the Company's new DoD contract. Forward-looking statements can be identified by the words "anticipates," "may," "can," "believes," "expects," "projects," "intends," "likely," "will," "to be" and other expressions that are predictions or indicate future events, trends or prospects. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Iridium to differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, uncertainties regarding the development and functionality of Iridium services, and the company's ability to maintain the health, capacity and content of its satellite constellation, as well as general industry and economic conditions, and competitive, legal, governmental and technological factors. Other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated by the forward-looking statements include those factors listed under the caption "Risk Factors" in the Company's Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC") on February 28, 2019, as well as other filings Iridium makes with the SEC from time to time. There is no assurance that Iridium's expectations will be realized. If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if Iridium's underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those expected, estimated or projected. Iridium's forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release, and Iridium undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements. Press Contact: Jordan Hassin Iridium Communications Inc. Jordan.Hassin@Iridium.com +1 (703) 287-7421 Twitter: @Iridiumcomm Investor Contact: Kenneth Levy Iridium Communications Inc. Ken.Levy@Iridium.com +1 (703) 287-7570 SOURCE Iridium Communications Inc. http://investor.iridium.com/2019-09-16-Iridium-Awarded-7-Year-738-5-Million-Contract-by-the-U-S-Department-of-Defense

  • German ministry seeks data on quicker fighter jet deliveries

    September 12, 2018 | International, Aerospace

    German ministry seeks data on quicker fighter jet deliveries

    Andrea Shalal BERLIN (Reuters) - The German military has asked potential bidders in a high-stakes competition to replace its aging Tornado fighter jets about accelerating deliveries of new warplanes before an initial target date of 2025, sources familiar with the matter said. The defense ministry posed the question in early August in a follow-up to its initial request for information from Europe’s Airbus (AIR.PA) and Lockheed Martin (LMT.N) and Boeing (BA.N), both from the United States, the sources said. The ministry had no comment on the latest twist in a tender that could be worth billions of euros. One of the sources said the request signaled concerns about the growing cost of servicing the current fleet of 85 operational Tornado jets. Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen says she favors a European solution - the Eurofighter Typhoon built by Airbus, Britain’s BAE Systems and Italy’s Leonardo SpA (LDOF.MI) - but Lockheed and Boeing still hope for a chance to bid for the work. Airbus and the U.S. government submitted data this spring about the four fighter jet models under consideration - the Eurofighter, Lockheed’s F-35, and the Boeing F/A-18E/F or F-15E. Germany is studying a number of options, including buying one type of jet to replace the Tornado jets, a split buy of two aircraft types, and a service life extension of the Tornado jets, according to multiple sources familiar with the process. Germany has also asked Washington for information about the possibility of leasing Boeing F-15 fighter jets, two sources said, although that is seen as an unlikely outcome. Von der Leyen in July said she expected a preliminary decision on the next steps by the end of the year. POSSIBLE SPLIT BUY? One proposal calls for Germany to buy 40-45 Lockheed F-35 jets to replace those Tornados that can carry nuclear bombs, and about 75 new Eurofighters to replace both the other Tornados and a first batch of Eurofighters delivered between 2003 and 2008. Buying F-35s would allow Germany to keep a mixed fleet of fighter jets, a key requirement in its military strategy, while averting costly and time-consuming modifications to the process of certifying the Eurofighter to carry nuclear bombs. Although not a nuclear power, Germany hosts some U.S. nuclear warheads under NATO’s nuclear-sharing policy and operates a number of Tornado warplanes that can deliver them. The U.S. has told Germany it could take 12 to 18 months to study the Eurofighter certification issue. German industry executives are pressing for quick answers, given that the already high cost of keeping the Tornado jets flying could rise once Britain and Italy phase out their fleets. “The cost of spare parts and operations keeps going up,” one industry executive said. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-germany-fighter/german-ministry-seeks-data-on-quicker-fighter-jet-deliveries-idUSKCN1LR24V

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