20 juin 2018 | International, Terrestre

US Army test-fires Belgian-made gun amid plans for Stryker upgrade competition

PARIS ― The U.S. Army's test-firing of a 30mm gun turret from CMI Defence is seen by the Belgian firm as putting it in a privileged position for an upcoming tender for greater firepower for the Stryker combat vehicle, a company spokesman said.

“We're in pole position, “ Xavier Rigo, communications manager of CMI Defence, told Defense News on June 18. “That does not mean we will win the race, but it puts us in a very good position. We are very proud to have been selected for tests, a real recognition for our team and our equipment.”

That test-firing stems from a cooperative research and development agreement CMI signed in 2015 with the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center, which is seeking a lethality upgrade for the Stryker.

CMI adapted the turret to fit the U.S. requirement for linkless ammunition, he said. ATK supplies the 30mm gun, which CMI fitted to its turret.

The Belgian company also supplies a 105mm gun turret for a bid led by SAIC in the U.S. tender for the Mobile Protected Firepower program. CMI has fielded its Cockerill 3105 turret, which uses its turret and 105mm cannon, with the latter built in a factory in northern France.

A Cockerill 3105 turret was among the products on display at the CMI stand at the Eurosatory trade show, which ran June 11-15. The stand at the show two years ago used the Cockerill brand name.

BAE Systems, General Dynamics Land Systems and SAIC are the competitors in that Mobile Protected Firepower competition, Rigo said. The next step is a down-select to two bidders, which will be asked to build and supply 12 prototype vehicles for tests.

In Europe, CMI is ”in discussion with the Belgian government“ in its search for a role in Belgium's planned €1 billion (U.S. $1.2 billion) acquisition of the Griffon and Jaguar armored vehicles from the French Army Scorpion program.

Those talks are exploring the possibility for CMI to participate in local production and maintenance of the Scorpion vehicles, he said. The Belgian project, dubbed Capacité Mobilisé, or CAMO, sparked debate, as the planned acquisition boosted French contractors Arquus, Nexter and Thales, but left CMI turrets by the wayside.

CMI has delivered 130 gun turrets and is building some 20 turrets per month to supply GDLS, which has a contract with a Middle Eastern country, he said, declining to identify the client nation.

Those turrets are based on four modules, armed with 30mm, 90 mm, 105 mm, and both 105mm and 30mm guns. There are both manned and unmanned versions of the turret.

Canadian broadcaster CBC reported March 19 that GLDS Canada has sold to Saudi Arabia combat vehicles armed with 105mm and 30mm guns for ”heavy assault,” anti-tank and direct-fire support.

CMI conducted a firing demonstration of its six Cockerill gun turrets June 15 at the French Army Suippes firing range, eastern France. Some 60 representatives of foreign army delegations attended, the company said in a statement.

The Belgian company had been one of the bidders for Arquus, the then-Governmental Sales unit of Volvo Group, until the Swedish truck maker canceled the sale. Nexter had been the other bidder.


Sur le même sujet

  • Is a light attack aircraft coming to the Corps?

    11 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial

    Is a light attack aircraft coming to the Corps?

    By: Shawn Snow The Senate Armed Services Committee plans to dish out millions for a Marine light attack aircraft and the Corps' futuristic sea drone, known as the MUX. The committee voted 25-2 on May 24 to give $100 million for a Marine light attack aircraft and $100 million for the MUX sea drone in its markup of the fiscal year 2019 annual defense legislation. The Air Force is still in pursuit of a light attack aircraft. Two aircraft, Textron Aviation's AT-6 Wolverine and the A-29 Super Tucano, are currently undergoing three months of demonstrations, which kicked off in May at Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico. So, what will the Corps choose? “The Marine Corps is monitoring the Air Force-led Light Attack Experiment to procure a cost-effective, observation and attack (OA-X) air platform for employment in permissive environments, with the intent to employ such an asset as a joint force capability,” Marine spokesman Capt. Christopher Harrison told Marine Corps Times in an email. “The SASC's decision to authorize $100 million for a light attack platform is only reflected in a policy bill ― nothing has been appropriated to this program yet.” Light attack aircraft are seen as a cost-effective means to deliver close-air support in more permissive environments like Iraq and Afghanistan. The A-29 Super Tucano is already fielded by the Afghan air force. Military officials in the past have come under criticism for using expensive aircraft to destroy low key targets. For instance, on Nov. 20, 2017, an F-22 Raptor was used for the first time in Afghanistan, to destroy a narcotics lab. Gen. John Nicholson, the commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, said the F-22 was selected because of its ability to carry the small diameter bomb. As for the MUX, the Corps submitted a request for information in March that spelled out some details the Marine Corps wants in its new futuristic drone. The Corps is looking for a drone to compliment the long distances of some of its other aircraft like the MV-22. According to the March RFI, the Marines want the MUX to be able to fly 700 nautical miles and carry a 9,500-pound payload. The Corps wants its future sea drone to have strike capabilities, surveillance and electronic warfare. Military.com first reported that the Senate Armed Services Committee voted to give $100 million for a Marine light attack aircraft. https://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/your-marine-corps/2018/06/04/is-a-light-attack-aircraft-coming-to-the-corps/

  • Nuclear deterrent still the US Navy’s top priority, no matter the consequences, top officer says

    12 décembre 2019 | International, Naval

    Nuclear deterrent still the US Navy’s top priority, no matter the consequences, top officer says

    By: David B. Larter WASHINGTON — The U.S. Navy's new top officer is doubling down on the service's commitment to field the new generation of nuke-launching submarines. Adm. Michael Gilday, who assumed office as the chief of naval operations in August, visited General Dynamics Electric Boat in Quonset Point, Rhode Island, on Tuesday. He reiterated in a release alongside the visit that the Columbia-class ballistic missile submarine remains the Navy's top priority. “The Navy's first acquisition priority is recapitalizing our Strategic Nuclear Deterrent — Electric Boat is helping us do just that,” Gilday said. “Together, we will continue to drive affordability, technology development, and integration efforts to support Columbia's fleet introduction on time or earlier.” The service has been driving toward fielding the Columbia's lead ship by 2031, in time for its first scheduled deployment. Construction of the first boat will begin in October 2020, though the Navy has been working on components and design for years. Two generations of submariner CNOs have emphasized Columbia as the service's top priority. Gilday has made clear that having a surface warfare officer in charge has not changed the service's focus. In comments at a recent forum, Gilday said that everything the Navy is trying to do to reinvent its force structure around a more distributed concept of operations — fighting more spread out instead of aggregated around an aircraft carrier — would have to be worked around the Columbia class, which will take up a major part of the service's shipbuilding account in the years to come. “It's unavoidable,” Gilday said, referring to the cost of Columbia. “If you go back to the '80s when we were building Ohio, it was about 35 percent of the shipbuilding budget. Columbia will be about 38-40 percent of the shipbuilding budget. “The seaborne leg of the triad is absolutely critical. By the time we get the Columbia into the water, the Ohio class is going to be about 40 years old. And so we have to replace that strategic leg, and it has to come out of our budget right now. Those are the facts.” The latest assessment puts the cost of the 12 planned Columbia-class subs at $109 billion, according to the Congressional Research Service. Having nearly 40 percent of the shipbuilding budget dominated by one program will impact the force, which will force the Navy to get creative, the CNO said. “I have to account for that at the same time as I'm trying to make precise investments in other platforms,” he explained. "Some of them will look like what we are buying today, like [destroyer] DDG Flight IIIs, but there is also an unmanned aspect to this. And I do remain fairly agnostic as to what that looks like, but I know we need to change the way we are thinking.” Renewed push for 355 While the 12-ship Columbia-class project is set to eat at 40 percent of the Navy's shipbuilding budget for the foreseeable future, acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly has renewed calls to field a 355-ship fleet. The 355-ship goal, the result of a 2016 force-structure assessment, was written into national policy and was a stated goal of President Donald Trump. “[Three hundred and fifty-five ships] is stated as national policy,” Modly told an audience at the USNI Defense Forum on Dec. 5. “It was also the president's goal during the election. We have a goal of 355, we don't have a plan for 355. We need to have a plan, and if it's not 355, what's it going to be and what's it going to look like?” “We ought to be lobbying for that and making a case for it and arguing in the halls of the Pentagon for a bigger share of the budget if that's what is required,” Modly added. “But we have to come to a very clear determination as to what [355 ships] means, and all the equipment we need to support that.” In a memo, he said he wants the force to produce a force-structure assessment to get the service there within a decade. Modly went on to say that the Navy's new Integrated Naval Force Structure Assessment, while will incorporate Marine Corps requirements, should be presented to him no later than Jan. 15, 2020. The Navy plans to look at less expensive platforms to reach its force-structure goals, which will likely include unmanned systems. But Congress has shown some reluctance to buy into the concept because of the sheer number of unknowns attached to fielding large and medium-sized unmanned surface vessels. The newly released National Defense Authorization Act halved the number of large unmanned surface vessels requested by the service, and skepticism from lawmakers toward the Navy's concepts appears unlikely to abate by the next budget cycle. That means the 10 large unmanned surface vessels, or LUSV, the Navy programmed over the next five years seem unlikely to materialize at that rate. The Navy envisions the LUSV as an autonomous external missile magazine to augment the larger manned surface combatants. But the drive to field less expensive systems to execute a more distributed concept of operations in large areas such as the Asia-Pacific region is being pushed at the highest levels of the government. In his comments at the Reagan National Defense Forum over the weekend, Trump's national security adviser said the military must rethink how it buys its equipment. “Spending $13 billion on one vessel, then accepting delivery with elevators that don't work and are unusable is not acceptable,” O'Brien told the audience, referring to the troubled aircraft carrier Ford. “The National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy are clear: We must be ready for an era of prolonged peacetime competition with peer and near-peer rivals like Russia and China. ... The highest-end and most expensive platform is not always the best solution.” https://www.defensenews.com/naval/2019/12/10/nuclear-deterrent-still-the-us-navys-top-priority-no-matter-the-consequences-top-officer-says/

  • India ups foreign investment, but will stop importing weapons that can be made locally

    19 mai 2020 | International, Aérospatial, Terrestre

    India ups foreign investment, but will stop importing weapons that can be made locally

    By: Ashok Sharma, The Associated Press NEW DELHI — India announced Saturday that global companies can now invest up to 74 percent in the country's defense manufacturing units, up from 49 percent, without requiring any government approval. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman expressed hope that the new policy will attract foreign companies with high-end technologies to set up their manufacturing bases in India in collaboration with Indian companies. Sitharaman's announcement came as part of reforms Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government is implementing to revive India's economy, which has been shattered by the coronavirus pandemic. She also told reporters that India will stop importing weapons that can be made in the country. “We will notify a list of weapons and platforms for ban on their imports and fix deadlines to do it,” she said, adding that this will improve self-reliance on defense manufacturing. India introduced up to 49 percent foreign direct investment in defense production in 2016 to attract modern technology in the country. That attracted more than 18.34 billion rupees (U.S. $244 million) until December last year, according to a government statement. India issues defense-industrial licenses for making tanks, military aircraft, spacecraft and their parts, UAVs, missiles for military purposes, and warships. India, a major buyer of military equipment, depended largely on the former Soviet Union during the Cold War. But it has been diversifying its purchases by opting for U.S. equipment as well. During U.S. President Donald Trump's visit to India in February, the two countries signed a deal for India to buy from the U.S. more than $3 billion in advanced military equipment, including helicopters. https://www.defensenews.com/global/asia-pacific/2020/05/18/india-ups-foreign-investment-but-will-stop-importing-weapons-that-can-be-made-locally

Toutes les nouvelles