15 janvier 2020 | International, Aérospatial

Lockheed, Boeing enter Germany’s heavy transport helicopter race

By: Sebastian Sprenger

COLOGNE, Germany — Lockheed Martin's Sikorsky and Boeing have submitted their proposals for the German military's envisioned heavy transport helicopter program, the companies announced.

Sikorsky is offering a version of the CH-53K designed for the U.S. Marine Corps, while Boeing is pitching the H-47 Chinook. The offers, due on Jan. 13, come in response to a request for proposals published by the Bundeswehr last summer. Government officials will spend the greater part of 2020 analyzing the submissions, with a second and final request for offers pegged for the end the year.

The multibillion-dollar STH program, short for Schwerer Transporthubschrauber, is meant to replace the German fleet of decades-old CH-53G copters. Deliveries from the winning bidder are slated to begin in 2024 and last through the early 2030s — that is if the program receives budgetary support from the government and lawmakers when the time comes for a contract next year.

Both companies have assembled a group of German suppliers that would oversee areas such as maintenance, simulators and documentation in an effort to maximize domestic industry participation.

The Bundeswehr initially wanted a no-frills, off-the-shelf cargo helicopter that would be easy on the defense budget. Notably, the Germans also want to use the STH choppers for combat search-and-rescue operations, with plans to raise that mission profile throughout the Air Force's ranks.

But last year's solicitation came with an unexpected level of complexity, Frank Crisafulli, Sikorsky's director of international business development for heavy helicopters, told reporters during a company presentation in Bonn, Germany, on Monday.

“Folks were caught by surprise,” he said. The added complications are due, for example, to the Bundeswehr's goal of having the helicopters certified in accordance with European civilian aviation regulations. In addition, German officials want a weather radar better than the one offered in the Marine Corps version of the CH-53K, plus a multilayered radio communications setup," Crisafulli said.

As envisioned, the STH program would plunge the German military into a model of contractor-driven support popularized by the U.S. Defense Department under the moniker of performance-based logistics, or PBL.

The idea is that the government can save money by dictating to contractors what level of readiness it wants for its hardware, and then letting vendors figure out how to meet those objectives within a given budget. Pentagon auditors previously affirmed the basic premise of performance-based logistics, with one key caveat: The government must have enough insight and clout in the programs to be able to set sensible performance benchmarks at rates favorable to taxpayers.

According to Mike Schmidt, CEO of Rheinmetall Aviation Services, one of Sikorsky's key local partners, the concept is relatively new for Germany. At an STH industry day in 2018, “nobody knew what PBL was,” he said.

At stake for the contractors is a 40-year relationship with Germany over the life cycle of the program. Boeing has portrayed its Chinook offering as a low-risk and low-cost option because more than 950 of the aircraft are already used by 20 countries. Sikorsky has played up the aerial-refueling capabilities of the CH-53K, especially in conjunction with the Lockheed Martin-made KC-130J tanker, to increase range.


Sur le même sujet

  • Embraer’s defense head talks growth areas for the Brazilian giant

    13 août 2018 | International, Aérospatial

    Embraer’s defense head talks growth areas for the Brazilian giant

    By: Aaron Mehta FARNBOROUGH, England — When Boeing and Embraer announced a tie-up for commercial business, it left quite a few questions about how the defense side of the Brazilian firm would work with the American giant. The answer, early on, is that there will be a new partnership around the KC-390 transport aircraft; but according to Jackson Schneider, president and CEO of Embraer Defense & Security, that is just the first step. During an interview at last month's Farnborough International Airshow, Schneider laid out his hopes for the Boeing tie-up as well as potential growth for the company's border security operations and A-29 Super Tucano aircraft. How does the Boeing-Embraer commercial deal impact the discussions you'll be having on the defense side? Defense will be a different transfer. We will decide together which will be the format. But it works as a normal joint venture, normal relationship, normal partnership. The most important thing to me in this dimension is [the interest] that both companies are dedicating for the programs. It is clear Boeing and Embraer is dedicated to investigate and identify the opportunities together. A lot of analysts expect the two companies to start in on some sort of intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance/early-warning special-mission aircraft designs. Do you anticipate the same? I think that we have very interesting applications in terms of business jets — very creative. We have already had some solutions that could go to market for training, for medical evacuation, for airport inspections, but there are many other opportunities, alternatives that we can explore together, also in this joint venture. We will begin a conversation to see how we can explore together special-mission solutions for the market. Full Article: https://www.defensenews.com/industry/2018/08/03/embraers-defense-head-talks-growth-areas-for-the-brazilian-giant/

  • British F-35s train with US B-2s for the first time

    3 septembre 2019 | International, Aérospatial

    British F-35s train with US B-2s for the first time

    U.S. Air Force B-2s trained with Royal Air Force F-35s Aug. 29, the first time foreign fifth-generation fighter jets have integrated with the U.S. stealth bombers. Three B-2 bombers from the 509th Bomber Wing out of Whiteman Air Force Base, are part of a U.S. Strategic Command bomber task force and are forward deployed to RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, U.K., which is U.S. Air Forces in Europe's forward operating base for bombers. They arrived in theater Aug. 27. “We're delighted that the USAF and [the] Bomber Task Force are here in the UK and that our F-35 Lightning pilots have the chance to fly alongside and train with the B-2 bomber crews," said Group Capt. Richard Yates, chief of staff at the UK Air Battle Staff, in an RAF news release. "This is the first time that any other country has done this.” The training aims to improve the interoperability of the strategic bombers with the fifth-generation fighter aircraft of European allies and demonstrate U.S. commitment to deterring adversary aggression on the continent, according to an Air Force news release. “Our Royal Air Force friends are integral to the 509th Bomb Wing mission," said Lt. Col. Rob Schoeneberg, Bomber Task Force commander, 393rd Expeditionary Squadron, in the Air Force news release. "The beauty of our partnerships is that we get to understand how they see the world. "Working alongside international fifth-generation aircraft provides unique training opportunities for us, bolsters our integration capabilities and showcases the commitment we have to our NATO alliance.” Prior to the training in England, a B-2 from the task force flew from RAF Fairford to Keflavik Air Base, Iceland. The Aug. 28 mission involved hot-pit refueling at Keflavik AB. The purpose of the flight was to conduct theater familiarization for aircrew members and to demonstrate U.S. commitment to allies and partners. https://www.airforcetimes.com/news/your-air-force/2019/08/31/british-f-35s-train-with-us-b-2s-for-the-first-time

  • FLIR Awarded $92.9 Million Contract for Logistics Support to U.S. Army Product Manager Force Protection Systems

    18 décembre 2019 | International, Terrestre, C4ISR

    FLIR Awarded $92.9 Million Contract for Logistics Support to U.S. Army Product Manager Force Protection Systems

    Arlington, Va., December 16, 2019 ― FLIR Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: FLIR) announced that it has been awarded a five-year, firm-fixed-price Indefinite Delivery, Indefinitely Quantity (IDIQ) contract by the U.S. Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland. The IDIQ vehicle has a ceiling value of $92.9 million, with an initial order of $5.2 million. The award is for repair, refurbishment, and logistics support of electro-optical (EO) and infrared (IR) sensors used by the Army's Product Manager Force Protection Systems programs, including Base Expeditionary Targeting Surveillance System-Combined (BETSS-C), Combat Outpost Surveillance Force Protection System, and Foreign Military Sales. BETSS-C entails a combination of cameras and surveillance equipment mounted on deployable towers and used to monitor wide areas around important military locations and bases. FLIR has been part of the BETSS-C effort since 2004 when it was called RAID, providing long-range EO/IR sensors at the heart of the system. Today, the company supplies high-definition sensors for BETSS-C as well as radars capable of detecting vehicles, people, or other moving objects at range. FLIR has delivered more than a thousand EO/IR sensors to the U.S. Army as part of the BETSS-C program. This latest IDIQ maintains the service partnership and related revenues FLIR has accrued with the Army, while augmenting the company's ability to meet their needs. “BETSS-C is a critical piece of technology that supports the safety of U.S. forces and its allies at locations around the world,” said David Ray, president of FLIR Systems' Government and Defense business unit. “We value this opportunity to support the Army and optimize the capabilities of this vital surveillance system.” The contract covers a five-year period of performance starting in the fourth quarter of 2019. Work will be performed at FLIR's Wilsonville, Oregon site and international repair facilities. About FLIR Systems, Inc. Founded in 1978, FLIR Systems is a world-leading industrial technology company focused on intelligent sensing solutions for defense, industrial, and commercial applications. FLIR Systems' vision is to be “The World's Sixth Sense,” creating technologies to help professionals make more informed decisions that save lives and livelihoods. For more information, please visit www.flir.com and follow @flir. Forward Looking Statements The statements in this release by David Ray and the other statements in this release about the contract and order described above are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are based on current expectations, estimates, and projections about FLIR's business based, in part, on assumptions made by management. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict. Therefore, actual outcomes and results may differ materially from what is expressed or forecasted in such forward-looking statements due to numerous factors, including the following: the ability to manufacture and deliver the systems referenced in this release, changes in pricing of FLIR's products, changing demand for FLIR's products, product mix, the impact of competitive products and pricing, constraints on supplies of critical components, excess or shortage of production capacity, the ability of FLIR to manufacture and ship products in a timely manner, FLIR's continuing compliance with U.S. export control laws and regulations, and other risks discussed from time to time in FLIR's Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports. In addition, such statements could be affected by general industry and market conditions and growth rates, and general domestic and international economic conditions. Such forward-looking statements speak only as of the date on which they are made and FLIR does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release, or for changes made to this document by wire services or Internet service providers. View source version on FLIR Systems: https://www.flir.com/news-center/military/flir-awarded-$92.9-million-contract-for-logistics-support-to-u.s.-army-product-manager-force-protection-systems/

Toutes les nouvelles