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  • Despite some opposition, US on course to deliver F-35s to Turkey on June 21

    14 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial

    Despite some opposition, US on course to deliver F-35s to Turkey on June 21

    WASHINGTON — The U.S. government is proceeding with plans to deliver the first F-35 to Turkey, with the country set to accept its first jet on June 21 despite opposition from some in Congress. A Lockheed Martin spokesman confirmed to Defense News that it's still gearing up for a rollout ceremony at its production facilities in Fort Worth next week. “The F-35 program traditionally hosts a ceremony to recognize every U.S. and international customer's first aircraft. The rollout ceremony for Turkey's first F-35 aircraft is scheduled for June 21,” the spokesman said in a written statement to Defense News. “The aircraft will then ferry to Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, where Turkish pilots will join the F-35A training pool.” The Senate is set to vote this week on the annual defense policy bill, which includes language that would prohibit the U.S. government from “transfer of title” to Turkey until the time that the Defense Department submits a report to Congress on removal of Turkey from the F-35 program. But even if that language succeeds in the Senate, the defense policy bill will proceed to conference, where a group of armed services committee members will hammer out differences between the House and Senate versions to emerge with a single, final piece of legislation. That process could take months. Congress's opposition to allowing Turkey to purchase the F-35 hovers around two points: the country's detainment of American pastor Andrew Brunson and a deal to purchase the Russian S-400 air defense system. But for now, it appears that the Defense Department has no plans to keep Turkey from getting its first F-35 or to put restrictions on its use at Luke AFB. Thomas Goffus, the Defense Department's deputy assistant secretary of defense for Europe and NATO, acknowledged during an Atlantic Council event Wednesday that Turkey's acquistion of the S-400 could present the U.S. military and NATO alliance with added technical risks. But he would not go as far to spell out what actions the Defense Department is considering or could consider later down the road — perhaps a sign that the Pentagon is waiting to see how this legislation shakes out. “We have a process to evaluate the risks to Western technology that that [procurement] would present. Our preference is that they do not acquire the S-400,” Goffus said. “Given that, they are a sovereign nation, and they are trying to take care of their defense needs,” he added. “What restrictions are placed on them and what Congress will eventually pass, I can't even speculate on it on this point.” By the time Congress passes legislation that could curb Anakara's F-35 ownership, the country will likely have already started building up its first squadron at Luke AFB. There, Turkish pilots and maintainers will train alongside U.S. ones, moving from academic courseware to live flights. NATO and U.S. Defense Department officials have warned Turkey that if it continues down the path of purchasing the S-400, it will not be able to plug it in with NATO technologies like the F-35. SASC, in its policy bill, echoed those concerns, saying that Turkey's purchase of Russian hardware would “degrade the general security of the NATO alliance [...] and degrade interoperability of the alliance.” After a meeting in Washington with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo earlier this month, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu expressed confidence that the United States would not only deliver the first F-35 to Turkey as planned, but that it would ultimately decide to continue F-35 sales to Turkey. “Turkey rejects threatening language from the U.S. on the issue, it is not constructive,” Çavuşoğlu said on June 4, according to a report from the Turkish newsgroup Anadolu Agency. Turkey plans to buy 100 F-35As. As a partner of the program, its domestic defense industry helps build the Joint Strike Fighter. Most notably, Turkish Aerospace Industries' serves as a manufacturer of the aircraft's center fuselage. It has also been chosen as a sustainment hub for the international F-35 community.

  • No more Army adviser brigades or amphib ships? This proposed report could radically change how the services fight

    14 juin 2018 | International, Terrestre

    No more Army adviser brigades or amphib ships? This proposed report could radically change how the services fight

    A Senate committee is asking for a report that could radically alter the “roles and missions” of the services — especially the Army and Marine Corps. Senate bill 2987 calls for the services to put together this report by February. However, the bill is still in draft form and would require House agreement to become law. The proposal for the report suggests the Marine Corps could take over all counterinsurgency missions from the Army, thereby eliminating the newly established and deployed Security Force Assistance Brigades. The bill's authors instead want the Army to beef up its presence in the “great power competition” against Russia and China by increasing the size and strength of its vehicle fleet. The service would also use more drones and fewer manned aircraft to support ground units in the multi-domain fight. The Senate Armed Services Committee's request also calls for the services to conduct or provide the following: An assessment whether the joint force would benefit from having one service dedicated primarily to low-intensity missions, thereby enabling the others to focus more exclusively on advanced peer competitors. A detailed description of, and accompanying justification for, the total amount of forces required to perform the security force assistance mission and the planned geographic employment of such forces. A re-validation of the Army plan to construct six Security Force Assistance Brigades, and an assessment of the impact, if any, of such plan on the capability of the Army to perform its primary roles under the National Defense Strategy. An assessment whether the security force assistance mission would be better performed by the Marine Corps, and an assessment of the end strength and force composition changes, if any, required for the Marine Corps to assume such a mission. The analysis isn't limited to ground forces either. The SASC wants an assessment of the feasibility of current plans and investments by the Navy and Marine Corps to operate and defend their sea bases in contested environments. One assessment may strike deeply into current Marine Corps and Navy projects — amphibious connectors and the ships that carry them. SASC is asking the Pentagon to conduct the following: An assessment whether amphibious forced entry operations against advanced peer competitors should remain an enduring mission for the joint force considering the stressing operational nature and significant resource requirements of such missions. An assessment whether a transition from large-deck amphibious ships to small aircraft carriers would result in a more lethal and survivable Marine Corps sea base that could accommodate larger numbers of more diverse strike aircraft. An assessment of the manner in which an acceleration of development and fielding of longer-range, unmanned, carrier-suitable strike aircraft could better meet operational requirements and alter the requirement for shorter range, manned tactical fighter aircraft. Special operations forces would join the Army's shift back to fighting big militaries, getting out of the counterinsurgency business as well, according to the Senate proposal. Senators are seeking: A detailed assessment whether the joint special operations enterprise is currently performing too many missions worldwide, and whether any such missions could be performed adequately and more economically by conventional units. A detailed assessment whether the global allocation of special operations forces, and especially the most capable units, is aligned to the pacing threats and priority missions of the National Defense Strategy. A detailed description of the changes required to align the joint special operations enterprise more effectively with the National Defense Strategy. Additional reviews include the space mission, requirements for the KC-46 tanker aircraft, and logistics in contested environments. If approved, the Senate Armed Services Committee wants the report by Feb. 1.

  • Saab’s sPAD is a tablet for the battlefield

    14 juin 2018 | International, C4ISR

    Saab’s sPAD is a tablet for the battlefield

    The smartphone is such an integral part of modern life that it's only natural to see battlefield adaptations. Today's novelty comes from Swedish defense giant Saab, and goes by “Soldier sPAD,” to give the convenience and utility of a small touch-screen computer, but make sure it can actually work in the kind of situations where soldiers might find iPhones or Androids lacking. The phone itself weighs just about six ounces, and the whole system, including battery, handheld tablet, cables between them, and pouches, clocks in at just under two pounds. The 3.7 inch pressure-sensitive screen of the sPAD is built to be used “with gloves, pens or any other item by putting pressure on the touch film.” The screen can both reflect light around it and be back-lit when ambient light is lacking. The sPAD is built to work in temperatures as cool as -22 degrees and as hot as 140 Fahrenheit, and can be safely stored in temperatures more extreme than those use parameters. There's an option of a non-rechargeable battery with 16 hours of power, rechargeable batteries, and hot-swapping of batteries so the tablet can remain in use even while changing out its power supply. As to what the tablet might actually be used for? App proliferation will invariably be constrained compared to commercial markets, but the present of a useful, touchable screen in the hands of troops means the possibilities are many and likely to be discovered through real-world use. Maps and communications are obvious. Displaying drone footage to an entire company through the tablet instead of just the drone operator could allow the formation to take advantage of real-time surveillance. Maybe tablets could even issue simple commands to mostly autonomous vehicles, allowing hunkered-down troops to play a bit of minesweeper in real life.

  • ViaSat acquisition boosts its secure networks portfolio

    14 juin 2018 | International, C4ISR

    ViaSat acquisition boosts its secure networks portfolio

    ViaSat, a global communications company that has contracts with the Department of Defense, announced its acquisition of Horsebridge Defence and Security, a UK-based firm focused on design, system integration and support of deployable secure networks. ViaSat said that the acquisition will give the California-founded company greater military communications integration expertise and access to the UK defense market through the relationships Horsebridge Defence and Security has with the UK Ministry of Defence (MOD) and UK Armed Forces. “By acquiring Horsebridge Defence and Security, we hope to accelerate the trajectory of our ability to support UK defence operations,” said Ken Peterman, president of government systems at ViaSat. “By combining our strengths with the deep domain expertise of the Horsebridge Defence and Security team, we intent to reliably extend commercial, military or emergency service networks to the tactical mobile edge.” The financial details of the deal will not be disclosed, ViaSat said. However, the company does not expect the transaction to materially affect its non-GAAP (adjusted) earnings for the 2019 fiscal year. ViaSat's Defense Department contracts include a $13.7 million Defense Information Systems Agency contract in 2017 to provide ground transceivers and a $33.3 million Air Force contract for anti-jam satellite technology.

  • Defence deputy minister to start sweeping procurement-rules review this summer

    13 juin 2018 | Local, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR

    Defence deputy minister to start sweeping procurement-rules review this summer

    By EMILY HAWS Department of National Defence deputy minister Jody Thomas says she'll work through the summer to review how the Canadian government buys defence equipment, with a view to paring down the procurement process to get projects out the door quicker. That could even mean more use of sole-source contracts, when it doesn't make sense to hold a competition. She says the department wants to ensure the money outlined in Strong, Secure, Engaged—the government's 20-year defence policy unveiled last year—is spent. The department took flak earlier earlier this year for not having the capacity to push procurement projects outlined in the plan through the system at the expected pace. Speaking at a June 7 conference organized by the Canadian Global Affairs Institute think-tank in Ottawa on the first anniversary of the defence policy, Ms. Thomas suggested switching up the rules around sole-source contracting. She discussed the idea on a panel with other top DND executives Gordon Venner and Bill Matthews, moderated by CGAI defence procurement expert David Perry. “I think what we want to do and what is expected of us is to have an honest conversation,” Ms. Thomas told the audience. “Where we know there's one supplier in the world that is compliant, Five Eyes-compliant, NORAD-compliant, whatever compliancy we need—to run a competition [in that case] where there is no hope of multiple bidders wastes [everyone's] time; it's kind of disingenuous and dishonest,” she said, referring to security alliances of which Canada is a member. “We have to talk to ministers about that, and ministers are open to that conversation.” Mr. Perry said in a separate interview that the change in process would be a big deal, but it would only happen if the government decides its priority is to spend money. The department is trying to determine a better balance between spending and oversight, he said, but it needs to keep in mind that the “objective is to spend money, not follow a thousand steps and do multiple dozens of reviews.” Sometimes government officials try overly hard to make the bid process competitive, said Mr. Perry, so they end up sending to Treasury Board for review some bids that clearly don't meet requirements. This leaves Treasury Board officials with only one compliant bidder, which in turn leads these keepers of the public purse to ask more questions and perhaps conduct reviews. For example, the government is looking at buying one or more tanker aircraft, and is narrowing down the list of eligible companies, said Mr. Perry. There are basically only two companies that sell tankers, Airbus and Boeing, he said. “You set it up so that everyone has a chance, but that doesn't actually mean that you can actually have a really competitive environment that have at least two bids that actually meet all of the mandatory things you need to meet to submit a bid,” he said. Depending on the extent the rules shift, they may require approval from not just Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan (Vancouver South, B.C.), but Treasury Board and the larger cabinet, he added. Conservative MP James Bezan (Selkirk-Interlake-Eastman, Man.) and NDP MP Randall Garrison (Esquimalt-Saanich-Sooke, B.C.), defence critics for their respective parties, said they support streamlining the procurement process, but Mr. Bezan said the Liberals just need to be more decisive. Industry representatives are also supportive, with the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries (CADSI) calling the move “refreshing” in an emailed statement. DND is trying to increase its procurement workforce, said Ms. Thomas, adding that the procurement process is the same regardless of whether the contract is worth $1-million or $1-billion. Ms. Thomas, who has been in her role since October, said the rules were put in place after the department received criticism from the auditor general. “We've been risk-averse and we've been criticized, so a deputy's normal reaction to criticism or recommendations from the auditor general is to put process in place,” she said. “I absolutely understand that; we need to make sure it's appropriate to the complexity of the project.” She said she's going to work through the summer to analyze the number of steps in the procurement process to determine the value they serve and where they can be reduced. Ms. Thomas said she will create “sort of a lean methodology of the number of hands something has to touch, how long do we spend in project definition, [and] how long we spend in options analysis.” Byrne Furlong, a spokesperson for the defence minister, said in an emailed statement the review will accelerate approvals and delivery. “Ensuring our Canadian Armed Forces [are] well-equipped to deliver on what Canada requires of them is a significant undertaking,” she said, adding the government is committed to doing so. New defence policy ups procurement spending Earlier this year, Mr. Perry authored a report suggesting the procurement plans laid out in Strong, Secure, Engaged could be threatened by long-standing process problems. The new policy would see procurement ramp up from about $3.5-billion to $4-billion annually, in 2018-19 dollars, to $12-billion. Defence procurement budgets were cut from about 1990 until the mid-2000s, he said. Now Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Papineau, Que.) is trying to play catch-up, but there's a bottlenecking of purchases. The government both doesn't have enough people to approve the projects, nor the quality of experience to work the larger, more technical jobs, Mr. Perry said in a previous interview. There are five critical steps to procuring defence equipment which spans from identification to close-out. Most work is done by DND to determine what it needs, said Mr. Perry, but the actual competition is run by Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC). The change in rules Ms. Thomas is contemplating would only apply to DND, she said, as that's her jurisdiction. CADSI president Christyn Cianfarani said, to her knowledge, a review in such a systematic way hasn't been done for some time. She said she sees the move as positive, allowing the government to properly balance risk and acquisition. “With the launch of SSE and the Investment Plan, the deputy minister's call to review the system is timely,” she said. “In this critical period of recapitalization, we simply cannot expect to move four times the volume of procurement through the same old procurement system.” When asked about the sole-sourcing of contracts, Ms. Cianfarani said competition is just one tool to meet policy objectives. She wants more sole-sourcing to Canadian firms and more Canadian-only competitions between companies with similar capabilities, price, and proven roots in Canada. Liberals just need to decide, says Conservative critic Mr. Bezan said sole-source contracting is almost impossible to do when the country isn't at war because one must argue it's in the best interest of national security and the taxpayer. The Liberals need to be more decisive on what equipment they want to buy, he added, saying they are risk-averse. “Fighter jets is a good example. They have punted the close of the competition—making the decision—until 2021,” he said. “Most countries run these competitions in around a year, and this was launched three to four months ago ... they should be able to close this off and make a decision within six to nine months.” The Conservative government before it tried and failed to procure fighter jets for several years too, incurring political controversy along the way, with accusations of conducting a flawed process of the purchase of billions of dollars. Mr. Garrison said the NDP welcomes efficiencies in the procurement process that benefit the armed forces and support Canadian industry, as well as meet DND targets.


    13 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial


    FORT WORTH, Texas, June 13, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Lockheed Martin [NYSE: LMT] selected Raytheon [NYSE: RTN] to develop and deliver the next generation Distributed Aperture System (DAS) for the F-35fighter jet. The result of a Lockheed Martin-led competition, the selection will enhance capability and reduce cost. The F-35's DAS collects and sends high resolution, real-time imagery to the pilot's helmet from six infrared cameras mounted around the aircraft, allowing pilots to see the environment around them – day or night. With the ability to detect and track threats from any angle, the F-35 DAS gives pilots unprecedented situational awareness of the battlespace. "The supply chain competition for the next generation F-35 Distributed Aperture System resulted in significant cost savings, reliability and performance improvements," said Greg Ulmer, Lockheed Martin vice president and general manager of the F-35 program. "We are aggressively pursuing cost reduction across the F-35 enterprise and this initiative is a clear demonstration of our unrelenting commitment to reduce costs and deliver transformational capabilities for the warfighter." Reduce Costs, Increased Performance The Raytheon-built DAS will be integrated into F-35 aircraft starting with Lot 15 aircraft, expected to begin deliveries in 2023. The next generation DAS system is estimated to generate the following results compared to the current system: More than $3 billion in life cycle cost savings Approximately 45 percent reduction in unit recurring cost Greater than 50 percent reduction in operations and sustainment cost 5 times more reliability 2 times performance capability improvement The new system will also indirectly benefit aircraft readiness and service manpower requirements "Raytheon's solution delivers next generation capability for the fifth generation F-35," said Roy Azevedo vice president of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Systems at Raytheon Space and Airborne Systems. "Our focus is on providing pilots every tactical advantage imaginable while ensuring taxpayers receive the best value possible." With stealth technology, advanced sensors, weapons capacity and range, the F-35 is the most lethal, survivable and connected fighter aircraft ever built. More than a fighter jet, the F-35's ability to collect, analyze and share data is a powerful force multiplier enhancing all airborne, surface and ground-based assets in the battlespace and enabling men and women in uniform to execute their mission and come home safe. For additional information, visit About Lockheed Martin Headquartered in Bethesda, Maryland, Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. About Raytheon Raytheon Company, with 2017 sales of $25 billion and 64,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. With a history of innovation spanning 96 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration, C5I™ products and services, sensing, effects, and mission support for customers in more than 80 countries. Raytheon is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts. Follow us on Twitter.

  • Thales et Microsoft s’associent pour développer une solution innovante de cloud de défense pour les forces armées

    13 juin 2018 | C4ISR

    Thales et Microsoft s’associent pour développer une solution innovante de cloud de défense pour les forces armées

    Thales et Microsoft ont annoncé aujourd'hui un partenariat privilégié pour le développement d'une solution commune de cloud de défense pour les forces armées. La future solution, fruit du développement conjoint des deux groupes, reposera sur la plateforme Azure Stack de Microsoft, un environnement souple et orienté services, qui sera parfaitement cybersécurisé et adapté par Thales aux contraintes de résilience militaires. Avec cette nouvelle solution, Thales, intégrateur reconnu et expérimenté, et Microsoft, partenaire et fournisseur cloud de confiance, accompagneront la transformation numérique des forces armées, dans les centres de commandement comme sur les thé'tres d'opérations. A l'avant-garde dans de nombreux domaines, Microsoft est un leader mondial reconnu en matière de solutions de productivité cloud. Thales quant à lui est leader européen dans le domaine de la défense et de la cybersécurité. Forts de leur leadership, les deux groupes annoncent aujourd'hui la signature d'un partenariat privilégié pour le développement d'un système cloud destiné aux forces armées. Cette solution modulaire permettra aux forces armées de conserver leurs données sensibles dans le cadre de leurs propres infrastructures. Les forces armées du monde entier investissent massivement dans la transformation numérique, en particulier dans la numérisation des systèmes de communication utilisés pour le commandement et le contrôle ou bien encore sur les champs de bataille, avec le développement croissant des combats dits collaboratifs. L'équipement actuellement en phase de développement résulte de l'adoption de technologies numériques pour la Défense, mais aussi de l'émergence de plateformes mixtes (militaires et civiles), capables d'interconnecter les systèmes des champs de bataille et les réseaux numériques situés en dehors de l'environnement tactique. Dans ce contexte, après le récent lancement de son système d'infrastructure de cloud privé hautement isolé Nexium Defence Cloud, Thales devient aujourd'hui partenaire privilégié de Microsoft pour le développement d'une technologie cloud adaptée aux clients les plus exigeants. Ensemble, les deux groupes seront les premiers à proposer une solution complémentaire adaptée aux différents besoins des forces armées, des centres de commandement nationaux aux divers thé'tres d'opérations, en offrant une sécurité maximale. Pour ce faire, la solution s'appuiera sur Microsoft Azure Stack, livré en tant que système intégré, sera utilisé comme système de base, un système dans lequel Thales intègrera ses solutions de connectivité, de chiffrement et de cybersécurité intégrale. Le système gérera les données les plus sensibles, hébergées dans les quartiers généraux des Ministères de la Défense ou déployées sur le terrain. In fine le système associera la puissance du cloud computing et les fonctionnalités d'Azure Stack aux fonctionnalités robustes et résilientes de Thales en matière de cybersécurité, pour garantir la sécurité de toutes les données considérées comme sensibles et confidentielles par les forces armées, avec, à la clé, une interopérabilité et une excellence opérationnelle accrues. Les solutions Thales et Microsoft ainsi associées apportent le meilleur des deux mondes et offriront aux forces armées une plateforme d'applications cloud souple et des fonctionnalités bien plus avancées que les fonctionnalités basiques de stockage et de gestion des données : des capacités que les clouds de défense sécurisés n'offrent pas aujourd'hui. Dans le cadre de futurs développements d'applications, la plateforme Azure Stack pourrait offrir aux utilisateurs la capacité d'analyser de gros volumes de données en temps réel, gr'ce à l'expertise Guavus Reflex en matière de collecte de renseignements, mais aussi la capacité d'utiliser des applications IoT militaires, avec différents types de capteurs sur le terrain, voire même d'échanger des données avec des applications mobiles (soldats augmentés). La dernière pièce du puzzle est apportée par l'expertise de Thales en tant qu'intégrateur terrain. Et comme cette plateforme cloud sera utilisée dans un environnement très particulier (thé'tres d'opérations, bases opérationnelles avancées et lointaines...), elle devra être configurée différemment d'un système commercial. Chaque système intégré nécessitera un certain niveau d'autonomie et sera capable de fonctionner « hors ligne » en cas de perte de connexion due aux conditions sur le terrain. Il faudra également que les systèmes soient mobiles et renforcés pour assurer leur résistance lorsqu'ils sont déployés sur le terrain. Toutes ces configurations et adaptations spécifiques sont au cœur du rôle de Thales en tant qu'intégrateur de terrain et développeur de systèmes électroniques pour les forces déployées. Cet effort collaboratif offrira une synergie plus forte que jamais. Les forces armées pourront exploiter les atouts de la plateforme Azure de Microsoft en matière de taille et de périmètre, tout en bénéficiant d'un cloud robuste et sécurisé pour les informations confidentielles dont elles ont besoin pour accomplir leur mission de défense nationale, avec, à la clé, une souplesse et une sécurité maximales. « Nous sommes ravis d'annoncer notre partenariat unique avec Thales pour accélérer la transformation numérique dans le secteur de la défense. Notre solution, Microsoft Azure Stack aidera les forces armées dans l'analyse de grands volumes de données sensibles pour permettre des développements innovants. Avec Thales, nous serons en mesure de fournir une plate-forme cloud flexible avec un niveau de sécurité inégalé qui aidera à surmonter les défis de l'industrie de la défense », Jean-Philippe Courtois, président des ventes mondiales, Microsoft. « Ce partenariat privilégié reflète l'état d'esprit et la passion pour les technologies innovantes que nos deux groupes et équipes partagent incontestablement. Nous nous réjouissons, à travers cette nouvelle aventure, de renforcer encore un peu plus notre relation déjà forte avec Microsoft. Ensemble, nous créerons cette nouvelle offre technologique, adaptée aux besoins changeants des forces armées modernes en matière de sécurité, pour les accompagner dans l'accélération de leur transformation numérique », Philippe Keryer, Directeur général adjoint Stratégie, Recherche et Technologie, Thales. À propos de Microsoft Microsoft (Nasdaq « MSFT » @microsoft) facilite la transformation numérique, pour une nouvelle ère : celle du cloud intelligent et de la périphérie intelligente. Sa mission consiste à donner à chaque entreprise et à chaque individu les moyens d'aller plus loin. À propos de Thales Ceux sur lesquels nous comptons tous pour faire tourner le monde font eux-mêmes confiance à Thales. Nos clients s'adressent à nous pour atteindre des objectifs ambitieux : améliorer la vie de chacun, renforcer la sécurité. Gr'ce à l'association d'expertises, de talents et de cultures multiples et variés, nos architectes conçoivent et livrent des solutions de haute technologie véritablement exceptionnelles. Des solutions du futur pour le présent. Du fond des océans jusqu'aux profondeurs de l'espace et du cyberespace, nous aidons nos clients à réfléchir plus efficacement et à agir plus vite, en maîtrisant un environnement toujours plus complexe et en optimisant chaque moment décisif. Avec quelques 65 000 collaborateurs, répartis dans 56 pays, Thales a réalisé 15,8 milliards d'euros de chiffre d'affaires en 2017.

  • Rafale International et Thales s'allient en Belgique

    13 juin 2018 | International, C4ISR

    Rafale International et Thales s'allient en Belgique

    La France poursuit activement sa campagne afin de convaincre la Belgique d'opter pour le Rafale et ainsi moderniser son aviation de combat, composée de F-16 américains vieillissants. Rafale International, le GIE qui regroupe Dassault Aviation*, le constructeur de l'avion de combat français, Thales, son électronicien, et Safran, son motoriste, a signé, mardi 12 juin, un accord de partenariat avec Thales Belgique. L'objectif est d'ouvrir un centre d'excellence industriel en cybersécurité outre-Quiévrain.

  • As European defense evolves, here’s how industry is responding

    13 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR

    As European defense evolves, here’s how industry is responding

    WASHINGTON — As priorities in Europe evolve, particularly with the threat of Russia growing more profound, industry partners are left to adapt. Defense News spoke to Kim Ernzen, vice president of land warfare systems in Raytheon Missile Systems, to find out the company's approach to meeting customer expectations. EU and NATO cooperation on defense is evolving. As they work out roles, is it challenging for industry? From an international or global footprint, we are looking to continue to expand in international marketspaces. As we look particularly to EU and NATO starting to cooperate more, the EU brings some capabilities to the table. Obviously NATO is typically backed more from the U.S. [But] it's how we merge the capabilities together so the fighting forces have what they need when they go into harm's way. From a U.S. defense industry perspective, we like to make sure we protect the latest and greatest. When we look to international, we work through the normal releasability channels to make sure we can release our products. I think there is going to be increased opportunity, because the threats are continuing to evolve. From a pure RMS perspective, we're well positioned to support [combatting] those threats. We continue to work closely not only with the U.S.-based customer, but through them, the international partners to look at the capabilities they may need. Missile defense remains a huge priority in Europe, but how have hybrid warfare tactics, particularly from Russia, influences defense strategies and as a result the investments? As we as a nation look at how to pivot from urban warfare of the last two decades to what many would consider more traditional warfare, but with added complexities of things like cyberattacks, EW. So now you go into overmatch capability, a long-range standoff capability. Army is focused on how to get long-range precision fires that supports the [combatant commands] in the international footprints, being able to protect the European front against advancing Russia threats. And it's got to have that standup capability, they also have to be able to see further. From a company perspective, we're involved in the PRSM [program] — the new Long Range Precision Fire competition between us and Lockheed Martin. And we're also working to enhance the sighting capability on the vehicle, so they can see farther and identity threats sooner. We see a lot of exercises in Europe. Does industry have enough of a seat at the table? We don't necessarily engage one-on-one with the exercising activities that go on; we'll get feedback through customer communities. This is something we talk with our customers about continually: the more we can be engaged, the more we can bring to bear, whether company investments, a spin on the product; the more we can partner with the customer community, sooner, the better it is for them and us as well. We just haven't necessarily always done that. We've seen a great deal of emphasis on increased defense spending of our European allies. Have you seen a bump up? Or if not, where do you see them focusing in on in terms of spending? We have seen a modest increase, particularly across the munitions fronts. Everyone [is looking] in the cupboard drawer, wanting to make sure they have the right stockpiles should they need to go into any engagement with the enemy. We're also continuing to see internationally more system integrated solutions. Not just coming forward with a product, but how a system would work and operate so they can be more nimble in the battlefield. That's a transition we're seeing. The FMS system can be painful to work through. Have their been improvements? We need to look at [whether we] can start converting more programs to direct commercial sales, depending on where we're at in a lifecycle of a product, and what it is we're trying to protect or throttle. FMS is a slow an laborious process. It hinders industry from capitalizing on market opportunities. The more we can change the paradigm and partner with the government side to do more [direct sales], the more they will benefit long term because they get the volume to drive down prices, and allow us to recoup funds to invests in future technology. But there are challenges, because each branches has organizations that support foreign military sales. There's a balance. As more and more countries seek indigenous capacities as well as a return on defense investments domestically, has the nature of partnership changed? Part of partnering with some of these countries involves offset requirements. Often as we start to partner with indigenous capable industries, it used to be ok to [offer up] basic machining. But there is more pull for being able to put high levels of noble work into these countries. Some are more advanced in capabilities, and as we look to partner, how to do we strike that balance, leveraging some technology they may bring to bear, with what we're trying to keep domestically and protected? It's an interesting paradigm. And a tipping point with how U.S. industry deals with going international.

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