6 avril 2021 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

Contracts for April 5, 2021

Sur le même sujet

  • General Dynamics Griffin Takes Lead To Replace M2 Bradley

    16 octobre 2018 | International, Terrestre

    General Dynamics Griffin Takes Lead To Replace M2 Bradley

    By SYDNEY J. FREEDBERG JR. BAE System's CV90 Mark IV is the latest upgrade of a 25-year-old vehicle widely used in Europe; the Rheinmetall-Raytheon Lynx is an all-new design, although individual components have a good track record; but the General Dynamics Griffin III is in the middle, combining a new gun and new electronics with the time-tested chassis from the European ASCOD family. AUSA: General Dynamics looks like the early favorite to replace the Army’s 1980s-vintage M2 Bradley troop carrier. That’s my personal assessment after talking at length to officers and contractors at last week’s Association of the US Army conference, where months of uncertainty finally gave way to some real clarity about both what the Army wants and what industry can offer. In brief, GD’s Griffin III demonstrator seems to hit the sweet spot between innovative and proven technologies that the Army wants to start fielding a Next Generation Combat Vehicle (NGCV) as soon as 2026. Of the three vehicles on display at AUSA, BAE System’s CV90 Mark IV is the latest upgrade of a 25-year-old vehicle widely used in Europe; the Rheinmetall-Raytheon Lynx is an all-new design, although individual components have a good track record; but the General Dynamics Griffin III is in the middle, combining a new gun and new electronics with the time-tested chassis from the European ASCOD family. The competitors do have a lot in common. All offer tracked vehicles with diesel engines — even BAE, which once touted its hybrid-electric drives as a key selling point. All three boast open-architecture electronics to ease future upgrades, an integrated Active Protection System to shoot down incoming anti-tank warheads, modular armor that can be layered on or stripped down depending on the mission, and a turret capable of mounting a 50 mm gun, the Army’s preferred caliber. Only the Griffin actually has a 50mm installed right now, however. The others currently have 35mm cannon. It’s also the only vehicle that can point its gun almost straight up, at an 85 degree angle, to hit rooftop targets in urban combat, something the Army has worried about extensively. Details like this suggest that General Dynamics has been listening more closely to the Army than its competitors. In fact, even where the Griffin III underperforms its competitors, most notably by carrying fewer infantry, it does so in areas where the Army is willing to make tradeoffs. The End of the Beginning Now, it’s still early in the NGCV race. While we only saw three contenders on the floor at AUSA, it’s still entirely possible a fourth player could jump in. My money’s on the team of SAIC and Singapore-based STK, which is already offering a modified Singaporean army vehicle for the US Army’s Mobile Protected Firepower (MPF) light tank. The other MPF competitors are BAE, with an update of the Armored Gun Systemcancelled in 1996, and GD, offering a version of the Griffin. By November, the Army will award two of the three companies contracts to build prototypes. If either GD or the SAIC-ST team wins, they’ll have at least a slight advantage for NGCV, since buying related vehicles for both roles will simplify training, maintenance, and supply. (BAE’s AGS is totally unrelated to its CV90, so an MPF win wouldn’t help it on NGCV). By contrast to MPF, the competition for NGCV is only at the end of the beginning, not the beginning of the end. The Army’s still refining its requirements, in part based on discussions with industry at AUSA. What’s the timeline? Col. James Schirmer, the program manager, said at the conference that “we are within weeks of having that requirement finalized.” Brig. Gen. Richard Ross Coffman, the Army’s director of armored vehicle modernization, said a formal Request For Proposal (RFP) based on those requirements will come out no later than January. So there’ll be time for the competitors to revise their NGCV designs before submitting them. Even after that, more than one company will get a contract to build prototypes for Army testing. What’s the objective that drives both this pace and the technological tradeoffs the Army is willing to make? Fielding the first operational unit in 2026 — nine years earlier than the original plan — to help deter Russian aggression. Deadline 2026 “All options are on the table, but the schedule will be the schedule,” Brig. Gen. Coffman told reporters at AUSA. “We would like to field this vehicle by 2026.” “If someone could develop a clean sheet design that could meet that timeline,” he said, “it’d be great, but I don’t know that’s doable.” (By contrast, the potential replacement for the M1 Abrams tank is coming later, so the service is looking for radical innovation). Schirmer offered more specifics. “We have a pretty challenging test schedule… very similar to MPF, (so) we really can’t afford a clean sheet design,” he said. The more mature the component technologies, the better, he said, but what’s best is that those individual components have been proven as an integrated system. Specifically, Schirmer said, “for the Bradley replacement, we are going to be buying vehicles that are based on a mature architecture — powertrain, track, suspension — that’s already in service somewhere in the world.” While these remarks leave the door open for the Lynx, or at least ajar, they’re not particularly encouraging. By contrast, the CV90 series entered service with Sweden in 1993, with variants now serving in Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Holland, Norway, and Switzerland. The Griffin III is the latest member of the ASCOD family — the Spanish Pizzaro, Austrian Ulan, and British Ajax — which debuted in Spain in 2002. While the Army wants a proven hull, however, Schirmer says there is one area where technology is advancing fast enough for it be worth taking some risk: lethality, i.e. the gun and sensors. In particular, while the Bradley has a 25mm chaingun, the Army really wants NGCV to have a 50mm cannon — firing shells about four times as big — that’s now in development at the service’s Ammunition Research, Development, & Engineering Center (ARDEC). That gun, the XM913, is currently integrated on just one competitor, the Griffin, although both the Lynx and CV90 turrets could accommodate it. All three vehicles, like the Bradley, also have room in the turret to mount anti-tank missiles of various types. The Griffin on the show floor also mounts a launcher for AeroVironment Shrike mini-drones, while the Lynx will have the option to launch Raytheon’s Coyote: Both mini-drones can be configured either with sensors to scout or with warheads to destroy. Even on weaponry, however, the Army is willing to make compromises to speed fielding, just as it introduced the original M1 Abrams with a 105 mm gun but with room to upgrade to the desired 120mm when it was ready a few years later. For NGCV, Schirmer said, they want the vehicle to have the 50mm gun eventually but “may settle on the 30 in the near term, just to meet schedule.” Armor & Passengers Besides gun caliber, the other easily measured aspect of an armored vehicle is its weight, which is very much a two-edged sword. There’s been no breakthrough in armor materials since the 1980s and none on the horizon, so the only way to get better armor is to make it thicker. So a heavier vehicle is probably better protected, but it also burns more fuel, wears out more spare parts, and has more trouble getting places: Bridges and transport aircraft in particular can only take so much weight. Full article: https://breakingdefense.com/2018/10/general-dynamics-griffin-takes-lead-to-replace-m2-bradley

  • China cozies up to Japan and South Korea as ties with U.S. sour over coronavirus

    28 mai 2020 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

    China cozies up to Japan and South Korea as ties with U.S. sour over coronavirus

    Chinese leader Xi Jinping is welcomed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe upon his arrival for a welcome and family photo session at Group of 20 leaders summit in Osaka last June. | POOL / VIA REUTERS BY TOMOYUKI TACHIKAWA KYODO BEIJING – While China’s tensions with the United States and Australia have been sharply intensifying over its handling of the new coronavirus outbreak, the Asian power has been apparently aiming to bolster ties with its neighbors — Japan and South Korea. As relations with Washington are expected to worsen at least until the U.S. presidential election later this year, Beijing has been making friendly overtures toward Tokyo and Seoul with an eye on economic revival after the pandemic passes, diplomatic sources said.   Many foreign affairs experts are carefully watching what kind of foreign policy China will adopt at the postponed annual session of the country’s parliament, the National People’s Congress, scheduled to be convened next Friday. Recently, the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump has accused Beijing of failing to curb the spread of the virus, first detected late last year in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, and of not sharing relevant information in a timely manner. Trump has said the United States could even “cut off the whole relationship” with China, while threatening to impose tariffs as punishment for Beijing’s alleged mishandling of the epidemic in the critical early months. Amid growing uncertainties over ties with the United States, “China is really eager to strengthen cooperation with Japan to revive the economy, which was hit hard by the virus outbreak,” a diplomatic source said. “For Japan, China is an essential trading partner. Japan also thinks the economy cannot rebound without cooperation with China. They are unlikely to be willing to ignite a controversy,” he added. In March, the Chinese Foreign Ministry abruptly announced a temporary ban on foreigners entering the country. The measure has applied even to those who hold a valid visa or residence permit. Beijing, however, has sounded out Tokyo on partially easing the restriction so that businesspeople who test negative for the new virus can travel between the countries, Japanese government sources said. China has already started to allow the entry of South Korean businesspeople meeting certain conditions in an attempt to ensure a smooth supply chain, which has been seriously disrupted in the wake of the virus spread. President Xi Jinping was quoted by the Chinese Foreign Ministry as telling South Korean President Moon Jae-in during a phone conversation on Wednesday that Beijing and Seoul “were the quickest to set up a joint response mechanism, and have maintained a track record of zero cross-border infections.” “The two sides also opened the first ‘fast-track lane’ for urgently needed travels without compromising control efforts to facilitate the unimpeded operation of the industrial chain, supply chain and logistic chain in the region,” Xi told Moon. A source familiar with the situation in East Asia said, “For the time being, China’s diplomacy may be determined by how much some countries can contribute to the economy. I’ll be paying attention to what Foreign Minister Wang Yi says at the National People’s Congress.” Tokyo has also taken a softer stand against China than other nations, as the governments of the world’s second- and third-biggest economies have been trying to improve their ties by effectively shelving bilateral rows. Japanese Ambassador to Canada Yasuhisa Kawamura was quoted by China’s Embassy in the country as telling Ambassador Cong Peiwu on May 8 that Tokyo is opposed to politicizing the pandemic and will work in tandem with Beijing to prevent infections. Earlier this month, the Japan Coast Guard said two China Coast Guard ships had approached and chased a Japanese fishing boat in Japanese territorial waters around the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea. The group of uninhabited islets, called Diaoyu in China, are controlled by Tokyo but claimed by Beijing. Relations between the two countries have been often frayed by the territorial dispute, but strains did not escalate this time. Globally, more than 4.5 million cases of infection with the new virus have been confirmed, with the number of deaths exceeding 300,000, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University. Meanwhile, China is facing some pressure over other countries regarding the virus outbreak, including Canberra that has asked for an independent investigation into the origins of the new coronavirus, prompting China to suspend beef imports from four major Australian meat processors, citing labeling and certification issues, in an apparent retaliatory move. “We will need an independent inquiry” to “learn the lessons,” Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told reporters on April 23. Australia is one of China’s largest trading partners. “Now people are aware of my view about having the sort of authorities that would enable independent public health inspectors to be able to go into areas where a virus of potential pandemic implications can be understood quickly,” Morrison added. The Chinese Embassy in Canberra released a statement on April 28 saying Ambassador Cheng Jingye has “called on Australia to put aside ideological bias, stop political games and do more … to promote the bilateral relations.” The Chinese Commerce Ministry has indicated that, following an 18-month investigation, it will impose anti-dumping tariffs on Australian barley. The punitive step would deal a stunning blow to Australia’s agricultural sector. “If an independent inquiry is conducted, China may be blamed for the virus outbreak. China is worried that the proposal will be raised at the WHO’s general assembly that will begin Monday,” a diplomatic source said, referring to the World Health Organization. China is also at odds with the United States, Europe, New Zealand and others over Taiwan’s participation in the WHO as an observer. Beijing has long considered the self-governing, democratic island a renegade province awaiting reunification. The WHO has been criticized by the United States and some of its allies for having turned a blind eye when China allegedly withheld information that could have helped limit the epidemic. The global body’s director general, Tedros Ghebreyesus, has strenuously rejected such accusations. Trump, who is believed to be attacking Beijing to gain public support ahead of the presidential election, has been one of the strongest critics of the WHO, calling it “a puppet for China.” In recent weeks he has frozen funding to the U.N. agency. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has also said Japan, along with the European Union, will seek an investigation into the WHO’s initial response to the coronavirus spread at the two-day annual meeting of its decision-making body in a virtual setting. https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2020/05/17/national/politics-diplomacy/china-japan-ties-us-coronavirus/#.Xs_4ijpKiUl

  • No surprise, cloud tops new Defense CIO’s priorities

    12 juillet 2018 | International, C4ISR

    No surprise, cloud tops new Defense CIO’s priorities

    By: Mark Pomerleau  Dana Deasy, the Department of Defense’s new CIO, said he sees four critical areas to support the national defense strategy and digital modernization: cloud, artificial intelligence, command, control and communications, and cyber. Speaking at an event hosted by Defense Systems in Arlington July 11, Deasy said those initiatives are listed not in order of importance, but rather in order of integration. Cloud is the foundation for many future warfighting capabilities as well as the other three priorities. As a result, the much anticipated Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure proposal is “not a longs ways off, [but] we have a bit more work to do before we release,” he said. Despite not committing to a specific release date for the multibillion dollar JEDI proposal, Deasy said he wants the overall JEDI effort to be comprehensive, clear and maximize responses. The proposal, he said, should be written in a way “that truly represents what any smart intelligence company in private industry would do in seeking to put an enterprise cloud in place.” Deasy, who has been on the job about two months, acknowledged the department doesn’t have a true enterprise capability that will deliver the efficiencies on the scale it needs. Since taking over the JEDI acquisition, he said there is a top down, bottom up review of the effort. deally, an enterprise solution should allow for flexibility, management of classified and unclassified data, scalable in the form of both infrastructure as a service and platform as a service, have common governance and will eventually be a multi-cloud, multi-vendor environment. he said. In his remarks, Deasy also highlighted the recently established Joint Artificial Intelligence Center. The center, he said, will advance DoD’s ability to organize AI capability delivery and technology understanding within DoD. The center will also help to attract and cultivate much needed talent in the AI space, he added, demonstrating successful intersection of human ingenuity and advanced computing to include ethics, humanitarian considerations and both short term and long term AI safety. https://www.c4isrnet.com/it-networks/2018/07/11/no-surprise-cloud-tops-new-defense-cios-priorities/

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