24 novembre 2021 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

''No company is immune''€™: Supply chain woes weigh on defense firms

Supply chain problems have hit all sides of the defense industry in unexpected ways -- and small businesses with narrower profit margins are particularly worried about how they can weather this storm.


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  • Pentagon expected to increase Space Force funding in coming years

    24 novembre 2020 | International, Aérospatial

    Pentagon expected to increase Space Force funding in coming years

    Nathan Strout WASHINGTON — U.S. Space Force leadership is confident the new service’s budget will increase in the coming years as the Pentagon continues to prioritize spending on space systems, according to the head of the Space Force’s main acquisitions body. “If you thought space was going to be a priority in a kind of one-and-done way, that’s not clearly what’s been happening, right?” Lt. Gen. John Thompson, commander of the Space and Missile Systems Center, said during the virtual 6th annual Schriever Space Futures Forum. “So three years in a row budgets have gone to the Hill with foundational changes to the space budget.” That’s despite the fact that space systems and their supporting equipment are very expensive. “ Everybody knows the space enterprise is a really expensive one, even with the reductions in cost that we’ve seen over the past couple decades. Launch services, space vehicles, ground segments — everybody knows they ain’t cheap, right?” Thompson said. The real shift in prioritizing spending on space came with the fiscal 2019 budget request, with the Pentagon declaring space a war-fighting domain. “I think we made some real progress. As we acknowledged space as a war-fighting domain, we had some really strong shifts in the budget,” Thompson said. For fiscal 2021, the Department of the Air Force requested $15.4 billion for the new Space Force. That’s $800 million more than the $14.6 billion the department requested for that same enterprise in fiscal 2020, according to the Air Force’s own calculations. “The ’21 [Program Objective Memorandum] was another landmark event. It was not only the first POM approved by the Chief of Space Operations … but during the cycle the Deputy’s Management Action Group, [or DMAG] … the folks that advise the secretary of defense on investment, continued to label space as one of the big strategic areas that DoD needs to address,” Thompson explained. And while the fiscal 2022 request has not been finalized or released yet, Thompson said it will include a marked increase in spending on space. “We plused up the space portfolio significantly to address users’ needs,” he explained. “I can’t give you the exact dollars and obviously it’s all pre-decisional. But the DMAG and many other DoD leaders are clearly sending a message that across the [Future Years Defense Program], the importance of the space enterprise is growing and needs to grow further.” Even further out, Thompson noted the fiscal 2023 request will continue the military’s trend of prioritizing space in the budget. “For the ’23 POM, which many of you know we’re already working, we’re trying to take an unprecedented enterprise approach to where we take the force design that we need along with the operational requirements associated with it, and we pair that up with the acquisition programs that are required to deliver the war-fighting capability that Gen. [John] Raymond and our combatant command, Gen. [John] Dickinson, are absolutely demanding,” Thompson said. He added that the Space Force’s funding strategy will balance innovation, international and commercial partnerships, and the need to rapidly provide capabilities to troops. Thompson pointed to the Space Force’s recently released planning guidance as shaping that strategy. Thompson credited the Space Force’s flexibility to maneuver within budget discussions to the service’s lean staff, something that’s been one of Raymond’s top priorities in establishing the new branch of the armed services. “That collaboration, as many of you know, within the Department of the Air Force or in any large service, is really, really hard because so much of the budget is set,” he explained. “We as a service, though, have a little bit more trade space. The chief of space operations has a smaller, more nimble team. There’s not as many spoons banging on highchairs demanding something that they’ve always been given. And so determining where to spend the next space dollar is really, really exciting, and it’s a team effort between operators, acquirers and the entire small, nimble team that is Space Force.” https://www.c4isrnet.com/battlefield-tech/space/2020/11/20/pentagon-expected-to-increase-space-force-funding-in-coming-years/

  • Turkey eyes new markets for exports

    24 septembre 2020 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité, Autre défense

    Turkey eyes new markets for exports

    Burak Ege Bekdil  ANKARA— Turkish government officials and industry executives are hoping to find new sales in what they see as emerging export markets in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan. “These are promising markets for Turkish manufacturers,” said one senior procurement official. A Turkish diplomat familiar with the three countries said that “smooth, friendly, problem-free political relations” with all three Asian countries promise export deals for Turkish companies. “As more Turkish-made systems become combat-proven [by local use], interest from those countries will increase,” he said. Hakan Kurt, chairman of Capital Exhibition, calls Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan as “hot markets” for Turkish defense and aerospace industries. Capital Exhibition organizes Defence Port Turkey South Asia. “Turkish manufacturers do not have the problem of ‘lack of sellable platforms’ like they had a decade ago,” Kurt said. Kurt expects that Turkish defense and aerospace exports to the three Asian countries could reach $5 billion in the next 10 years. Turkey’s overall defense exports stood at $2.74 billion in 2019, down from the official target of $3 billion. A defense specialist in Ankara advised caution about Asian markets. “These countries need hardware. They have good political ties with Turkey. But their economies are often cash-strapped. Turkey may also have licensing problems in any potential export deal as it depends on foreign technology for local production,” he said. In 2018, Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) signed a $1.5 billion agreement to sell a batch of 30 T129 attack helicopters to Pakistan. But the deal has not moved forward as TAI has failed to secure U.S. export licenses for the contract. The T129 is a twin-engine multirole attack helicopter produced under license from the Italian-British company AgustaWestland. It’s powered by two LHTEC T800-4A turboshaft engines. Each engine can produce 1,014 kilowatts of output power. The T800-4A is an export version of the CTS800 engine. LHTEC, the maker of the engine, is a joint venture between the American firm Honeywell and the British company Rolls-Royce. The defense specialist said that most likely Turkish hardware to go into Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan would include naval vessels and patrol boats (except Afghanistan), smart ammunition, drones and armored vehicles. https://www.defensenews.com/global/2020/09/23/turkey-eyes-new-markets-for-exports/

  • UK reveals Pyramid programme to rapidly reconfigure software across multiple aircraft types

    5 octobre 2021 | International, Aérospatial

    UK reveals Pyramid programme to rapidly reconfigure software across multiple aircraft types

    The United Kingdom has revealed a new programme, dubbed Pyramid, to rapidly reconfigure the avionics of current and future air platforms. The Tempest future fighter is set to feature the Pyramid Reference Architecture that will enable softwa...

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