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  • House panel unveils $674.6B Pentagon spending bill

    11 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

    House panel unveils $674.6B Pentagon spending bill

    BY REBECCA KHEEL - 06/06/18 12:39 PM EDT The House Appropriations Committee on Wednesday unveiled its $674.6 billion Pentagon spending bill for fiscal 2019. The bill would provide $606.5 billion in base discretionary funding, which is about $900 million less than the Trump administration requested but $17.1 billion more than this year’s spending level. The bill would also provide $68.1 billion for a war fund known as the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) account. “With the changing global dynamics and ever-growing threats to our security, it is absolutely imperative that our military is properly trained, equipped and fully supported in order to do their jobs,” Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-N.J.) said in a statement. “This legislation does all of this by including robust funding for our troops, the defense programs and activities necessary to accomplish our national goals and ideals, and to continue to rebuild our military.” The money would pay for a boost of 15,600 troops across the military and a 2.6 percent pay raise for service members, both matching what was requested by the administration. The bill would also provide $145.7 billion for equipment purchases and upgrades. That’s split $133 billion for base requirements — or $2.5 billion more than requested — and $12.7 billion in OCO. The procurement money includes $22.7 billion for 12 new Navy ships, two more ships than the administration requested. The two extra ships are littoral combat ships, which Congress continues to support buying — despite the Navy’s plan to transition away from the ship — so that shipyards keep working and will be able to keep pace on future orders. The bill would also fund a slew of aircraft, including $9.4 billion for 93 F-35 fighter jets and $1.9 billion for 24 F/A-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft. The bill includes funding for the procurement of 16 more F-35s than requested. The plane is built by Lockheed Martin in defense appropriations subcommittee Chairwoman Kay Granger's (R-Texas) district. Granger said the bill is an extension of last year’s efforts to address readiness shortfalls. “It is a product of countless meetings and briefings with our military leaders and demonstrates our commitment to ensuring the U.S. military is the strongest, most capable military in the world,” she said in a statement. “Our military must have the resources it needs to respond to and deter threats from countries like Russia, China, Iran and North Korea, and also counter violent extremists throughout the world.”

  • This Army unit will be first to test an exoskeleton that lightens combat load

    11 juin 2018 | International, Terrestre

    This Army unit will be first to test an exoskeleton that lightens combat load

    By: Todd South Soldiers with the 10th Mountain Division will be the first to test the long-awaited exoskeleton that developers say can reduce injuries, carrying loads and help troops move around the battlefield with ease. The U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center partnered with the division in February to identify, evaluate and transition exoskeleton technology to the Army. NSRDEC has led exoskeleton efforts for the Army for a number of years. One of the more advanced products that will soon hit the division is made by Lockheed Martin. Army Times spoke recently with company officials about the ONYX device, which will go through phases of testing, beginning as early as this fall. The first phase will include a six-month “development effort” in which researchers work on “quality of life” portions of making the knee- and hip-focused device fit comfortably and correctly to the soldier’s body, said Keith Maxwell, senior program engineer for the company’s exoskeleton technologies. That will be done with 10th Mountain soldiers later this year. And that’s not the only high-tech gear that 10th Mountain soldiers will be testing. They’re one of two units, along with the 101st Airborne Division, that will take robotic vehicles to act as gear mules into the formations later this year. That’s part of the Squad Multipurpose Equipment Transport program. The program has four vehicles being evaluated by those Army units and a yet-to-be identified Marine Corps unit at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. For the ONYX, 10th Mountain soldiers will evaluate the changes as they develop an exoskeleton “concept of operations.” A second phase will include a cycle that starts in early 2019 to add in faster, quieter actuators to the device; those will also be tested by 10th Mountain soldiers. Then a third round will test for ruggedized operation before the Army decides if or when the tech will be fielded. Officials estimate the device could be ready for fielding as early as 2021. The most challenging movements of climbing, especially with a load, up stairs or mountain faces, present strain on the endurance and strength of a soldier but also put them in a position for significant injury to their back, hips or knees. The exoskeleton allows a soldier to transfer the weight of the load from his or her frame to the device. Much of the work began years before with the Human Universal Load Carrier, or HULC. But that system was too bulky and required more power, which meant more batteries. More batteries meant more weight, which could cancel out the benefits of transferring load bearing, Maxwell said. So, with the ONYX, developers incorporated changes made in systems that came after HULC – removing added power requirements and adding technology that had been used in the medical field by B-Temia for people with extremity injuries. Last year, a University of Michigan study by their Human Neuromechanics Laboratory showed reduced fatigue using the knee-stress relief device that is part of the ONYX exoskeleton called the FORTIS. The university had four participants carry a 40-pound backpack at different speeds on a treadmill at a 15-degree incline. All showed reduced exertion when using the exoskeleton, according to the study. While the ONYX device has shown considerable promise in clean environments, the big step will be ruggedizing it for fieldwork, Maxwell said. “That’s the hardest part of all, ruggedization,” Maxwell said. And that’s a matter of time and investment. “None of the stuff we’re facing is insurmountable,” Maxwell said. Waterproofing the device is paramount, he said. The standard is for it to be submersible to three feet of water for 15 minutes. While the current device focuses on the lower body, which carries most of the load and presents most soldier injury problems, there are technologies that are coming from this research that could eventually work their way into upper body support and possibly the TALOS suit that is being developed by Special Operations Command.

  • DND unable to spend billions in equipment funds, pushing projects beyond next election

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

    DND unable to spend billions in equipment funds, pushing projects beyond next election

    Murray Brewster National Defence fell $2.3 billion short in its plan to re-equip the military in the past year — a failing that one defence analyst says guarantees many important decisions on warplanes, ships and vehicles will be pushed beyond next year's election. Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan revealed the figure Wednesday as he launched the department's long-anticipated investment plan at a major defence industry trade show in Ottawa. The plan is the Liberal government's spending roadmap for its defence policy, released a year ago, which pledged $6.2 billion in new capital spending in the first year. New figures show $3.9 billion was spent. Later in the day, the chair of the Liberal government's council of economic advisers underscored the importance of investment in the defence sector and how it will drive innovation in other sectors. "If we want to grow — and we can in Canada, and we want to grow more significantly — the defence sector is going to play an essential part in doing that," Dominic Barton said. Leading-edge military technology and the possibilities for its commercialization can transform the broader economy, he added. However, the investment plan presented by the Liberals on Wednesday leans heavily on refurbishing existing technology and equipment — mostly aircraft — in the coming decade. The Defence Capabilities Blue Print will see the air force's CF-18 fighter jets, C-140 Aurora surveillance planes, C-144 Challenger executive jets, C-150 Polaris refuellers and transports, CT-114 Tutor trainers and demonstration jets, C-149 search and rescue helicopters and CH-146 Griffons all given life extensions and upgrades. New aircraft, including drones, won't be introduced until the mid-2020s — or later. A defence analyst said that's no surprise since many major decisions will be pushed past the 2019 election. That means it will be up to the next government to make the tough decisions on how much to buy and how much to spend. "Unless we see an extremely busy June with a lot of announcements on milestone projects, a lot of the work is going to be left until later," said Dave Perry, an expert in procurement at the Canadian Global Affairs Institute. "They're not moving ahead as quickly as they suggested in the defence policy." The government could leave even more money on the table this year. Figures compiled by Perry, using the federal government's own budget documents and records, suggest as much as $3 billion could go unspent on military equipment in the current fiscal period. The former Conservative government was repeatedly criticized for promising the military big things in terms of equipment, but rarely delivering and allowing allocated funds to lapse. That cash was eventually kicked back to the federal treasury and used for deficit reduction. DND gets to keep money, spend it later Sajjan said defence spending is now guaranteed in the fiscal framework, the government's long-term financial plan. That means National Defence gets to keep the money and spend it later. "We always know we might not need the extra funds, but they have to be there just in case," Sajjan said. "Rest assured, the unspent $2.3 billion dollars is protected. Those funds remain available when we need them." He defended the spending "delta," saying that 30 per cent of it comes because projects came in under budget. Another 42 per cent was because of delays by defence contractors. Approximately one-third, though, relates to the department's inability to make a decision — or develop specifications on time. Sajjan took a shot at the government of former prime minister Stephen Harper, which used to regularly publish its defence spending plans, but never had specific funding attached to individual projects. Conservative defence critic James Bezan said there is a disconnect between the government's defence policy and its spending plans as outlined in federal budget documents. "Nothing seems to match," said Bezan, who treats the federal budget as the last word in spending. There was no mention of National Defence in Finance Minister Bill Morneau's latest fiscal, presented in February. Defence officials insist that is because the department's spending is already accounted for in the fiscal framework. The federal Treasury Board, however, must approve funding on a project-by-project basis — and Bezan said that hasn't been done. "There's no money to do the things Sajjan is out there talking about," he said. "We are still dealing with the problems of getting procurement done in a timely manner and getting it done on budget." The head of a defence industry group — Sajjan's audience as he made the announcement — said the government does deserve credit for consulting more about projects ahead of time, but there are obvious shortcomings. "Any time funding moves to the right, it is a predictability problem for us. We want as as predictable and as stable funding as we can get," said Christyn Cianfarani, the president and CEO of the Canadian Association of Defence and Security Industries. "I still think, systemically, there is a problem and if we don't turn it upside down and shake it — the whole procurement system — and do things differently ... many, many things differently, we'll still see sluggishness in the procurement system." He said the Liberal investment plan is not "aspirational" and states clearly where the cash is coming from. The Conservative guidebook in the end "did not deliver for the men and women in uniform," Sajjan told the audience of defence contractors.

  • A Bourges, la DGA se prépare aux nouvelles formes de combat

    11 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Terrestre

    A Bourges, la DGA se prépare aux nouvelles formes de combat

    Mini-drones, véhicules blindés collaboratifs, neutralisation des engins explosifs… La Direction générale de l’armement prépare les matériels aux nouvelles formes de combat. Des mini-drones et des robots attendent, posés sur les tables et sur le sol dans un grand hangar. Au centre technique d’armement terrestre de Bourges (Cher), les experts de la Direction générale de l’armement (DGA) disposent d’une habitation avec ses pièces, ses cloisons, ses meubles, son escalier… De quoi tester en grandeur nature la maniabilité de ces équipements et surtout leur capacité à dénicher un individu dans un local inconnu. Discrets ou volumineux, sur roues ou sur chenilles, destinés au grand public ou directement conçus pour un usage militaire, les produits testés sont très variés. "Leurs caméras embarquées agissent comme des yeux déportés. Cela évite de mettre les vies des soldats en danger", explique le chef du laboratoire robotique de la DGA, à la tête d’une équipe de 16 experts. Avant de les mettre dans les mains des militaires, ils s’assurent que ces robots ont les capacités prévues, notamment en termes d’autonomie, de résolution et de transmission[…]

  • Marines want a better way do force-on-force tactical shooting training

    11 juin 2018 | International, Terrestre

    Marines want a better way do force-on-force tactical shooting training

    After decades of using laser-type devices for shooting simulations and force-on-force tactical warfighting, the Marine Corps is asking for a new way to do fake shooting. A recent request for information is asking the commercial industry to bring ideas to the Corps that would help it make simulated shooting more realistic for up to a battalion-size force and improve current systems. Some versions of those systems have been in operation since Nintendo’s Duck Hunt video game was considered high-tech shooting and laser tag advertisements dominated Saturday morning cartoons. This won’t hit every Marine Corps installation but many will have it. Based on the RFI, the systems would be employed “to provide turnkey instrumented exercises with After Action Review (AAR) at 29 Palms, Camp Lejeune, Camp Pendleton, MCB Hawaii, MCB Okinawa or MCB Quantico within 3 weeks of notice, as well as support additional exercises upon request at Camp Fuji, Japan, Marine Corps Mountain Warfare Center, MCB Yuma, and specified reserve locations.” And the Marines are not doing this alone. They will be leveraging the Army’s Live Training Engagement Component software. That’s a tactical training framework so that simulations can be on the same standards and work jointly with other services and potentially foreign partners. One of the key cross functional teams that the Army formed last year included simulated training environment work. The goal is to incorporate better simulations for training at all levels, beginning in the design and procurement of future weapons and other equipment systems. The Corps wants a system that would be able to simulate all weapons and vehicles typically seen in a battalion, which would include at least: M4/M16; M9 or sidearm, the M27 Infantry Automatic Weapon; hand grenades; rocket propelled grenades; Light Anti-Tank Weapon; 60mm mortars; 81mm mortars; Claymore antipersonnel mine; Mk-19 grenade launcher; Russian machine gun; AK-47 variants; M41 TOW; Javelin missile and the Carl Gustaf recoilless rifle. It would distinguish between a hit, wound or miss and record information for after-action reviews. Marine Corps Times first reported news of this initiative last year following an interview with then-program manager for Training Systems at Marine Corps Systems Command, Col. Walt Yates. At the time, Yates described some of the shortfalls of using lasers when gauging accuracy and real-world effects. “A laser is at the speed of light, and the bullet is not,” he said. Yates previously said that though the current shooting systems are a generational change from old MILES, or multiple integrated laser engagement system, lasers have fundamental flaws for realistic battle scenarios. For example, laser-based systems shoot line-of-sight, making arcing weapons such as mortars and grenade launchers more difficult to simulate. Lasers can also be deflected by light concealment such as tree leaves and thin walls. And the number of troops and shooting ranges will change with new systems. The first generation ITESS accommodated 120 Marines and opposition forces, the second generation expanded to 1,500 with a communication radius of 5 to 8 km. The third seeks to track up to 2,500 Marines, making it capable of battalion on battalion exercises envisioned by the commandant, Yates said in the November interview. A new simulator must act more like a real bullet, requiring Marines to lead their moving targets, fire rifles on semi, burst and fully automatic modes and ensure the bullet travels in the realistic path, which is not perfectly line of sight, he said.

  • Army Wants Manned-Aircraft Airworthiness Levels From Future UAS

    11 juin 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Terrestre

    Army Wants Manned-Aircraft Airworthiness Levels From Future UAS

    Graham Warwick | Aviation Week & Space Technology Its appetite Fueled by the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the U.S. Army is a big user of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), from thousands of hand-launched RQ-11 Ravens to hundreds of tactical RQ-7 Shadows and medium-altitude MQ-1C Gray Eagles. And the service has made progress in how it uses UAS, including manned-unmanned teaming between Shadows and AH-64 Apache helicopters in the reconnaissance role. But as it looks to the future, the Army is less than happy with some aspects of its UAS ...

  • État de l'industrie canadienne de la défense 2018

    25 mai 2018 | Local, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR, Sécurité

    État de l'industrie canadienne de la défense 2018

    Innovation, Sciences et Développement économique Canada (ISDE) s'est associé à l'Association des industries canadiennes de défense et de sécurité (AICDS) pour diffuser publiquement un nouveau rapport sur l'industrie canadienne de la défense à l'intention des décideurs. Le rapport aborde notamment le renforcement de la capacité d'analyse par la recherche collaborative, les retombées économiques, l'innovation, les exportations et l'analyse des chaînes d'approvisionnement.

  • Dépenses militaires mondiales toujours en hausse, le Canada à un record historique

    14 mai 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR

    Dépenses militaires mondiales toujours en hausse, le Canada à un record historique

    Selon les nouveaux chiffres du Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), le total des dépenses militaires mondiales a atteint 1 739 milliards $US en 2017, une augmentation de 1,1 % en termes réels par rapport à 2016. L’organisation explique dans son rapport que les dépenses militaires de la Chine ont de nouveau augmenté en 2017, poursuivant une tendance à la hausse des dépenses qui dure depuis plus de deux décennies. Les dépenses militaires de la Russie ont diminué pour la première fois depuis 1998, tandis que les dépenses des États-Unis sont restées constantes pour la deuxième année consécutive. En 2017, les dépenses militaires représentent 2,2 % du produit intérieur brut mondial (PIB) soit 230 $US par personne. «L’augmentation des dépenses militaires mondiales de ces dernières années est largement dues à la croissance substantielle des dépenses des pays d’Asie et Océanie et du Moyen-Orient, tels que la Chine, l’Inde et l’Arabie Saoudite», précise Dr Nan Tian, chercheur au programme Armes et Dépenses militaires (AMEX) du SIPRI. «Au niveau mondial, le poids des dépenses militaires s’éloigne clairement de la région Euro-Atlantique». Dans le détail Les dépenses militaires en Asie et Océanie ont augmenté pour la 29ème année consécutive. La Chine, deuxième plus grand dépensier au monde, a augmenté ses dépenses militaires de 5,6 % à 228 milliards $US en 2017. La part des dépenses chinoises dans les dépenses militaires mondiales est passée de 5,8 % en 2008 à 13 % en 2017. En revanche, les dépenses militaires en Afrique ont diminué de 0,5 % en 2017, soit la troisième baisse annuelle consécutive depuis le pic des dépenses enregistré en 2014. Avec 66,3 milliards $US, en 2017 les dépenses militaires de la Russie sont inférieures de 20 % à celles de 2016, première baisse annuelle depuis 1998. Poussées, en partie, par la perception d’une menace croissante de la part de la Russie, les dépenses militaires en Europe centrale et occidentale ont augmenté respectivement de 12 % et 1,7 %. De nombreux États européens sont membres de l’Organisation du Traité de l’Atlantique Nord (OTAN) et, dans ce cadre, ont convenu d’augmenter leurs dépenses militaires. Le Canada n’est pas en reste puisque pour la première fois le pays intègre le Top 15 mondial (14e place) avec plus de 27 milliards $ CAD dépensés en Défense, comparativement à environ 24 milliards $ CAD en 2016. C’est donc une hausse de 15% en une seule année ! Dans une déclaration envoyée à, le ministre de la Défense nationale Harjit Sajjan indique: «Nous respectons notre engagement d’accroître les dépenses de défense grâce à notre politique de défense nationale, Protection, Sécurité, Engagement. Tel qu’énoncé dans notre politique de défense, nous augmentons les dépenses annuelles de défense au cours des 10 prochaines années pour les porter à 32,7 milliards de dollars en 2026-27, soit une augmentation de plus de 70%. Je suis fier des investissements historiques que notre gouvernement réalise grâce à Protection, Sécurité, Engagement, et le Canada est fier d’être parmi les meilleurs pays qui investissent dans ses forces armées».

  • Budget de l'UE : Bruxelles propose une enveloppe conséquente pour la défense

    14 mai 2018 | International, Aérospatial, Naval, Terrestre, C4ISR

    Budget de l'UE : Bruxelles propose une enveloppe conséquente pour la défense

    La Commission européenne propose un budget de 20 milliards d'euros pour la défense entre 2021 et 2027, dont 7 milliards pour le Fonds européen de défense. SOURCE AFP Publié le 29/04/2018 à 10:07 | Le L'Union européenne de la défense se concrétise financièrement avec une dotation conséquente de près de 20 milliards d'euros dans le projet de budget préparé par la Commission européenne pour la période 2021-2027, selon des documents de travail vus par l'Agence France-Presse. Sans surprise, le Fonds européen de défense se taille la part du lion avec une dotation pour l'ensemble de la période de 7 milliards pour l'industrie de la défense et une autre de 3,5 milliards pour la recherche et le développement conjoints de technologies et d'équipements. Une seconde enveloppe de 6,5 milliards d'euros est consacrée à la mobilité militaire en Europe. L'espace n'est pas en reste avec un financement programmé de 13 milliards d'euros pour les systèmes de navigation par satellites Galileo et EGNOS. « Cela correspond exactement à ce qui est annoncé depuis le lancement du Fonds de défense avec une dotation de 1,5 milliard d'euros par an », a déclaré à l'Agence France-Presse l'eurodéputé français Arnaud Danjean, spécialiste des questions militaires. Le Fonds doit permettre de financer des projets montés en coopération, a souligné Arnaud Danjean. Lire aussi - Pourquoi l'Europe de la défense ne parvient pas à décoller La dotation pour la mobilité vise pour sa part à renforcer les capacités logistiques avec des infrastructures routières et ferroviaires utilisables pour déplacer des unités et des équipements militaires de l'Italie à la Pologne, de la France à l'Estonie. « Tout cela relève du symbole plus que d'une capacité crédible », a toutefois jugé sous couvert de l'anonymat un eurodéputé membre de la commission des Budgets. L'objectif de l'Union européenne est de se renforcer en tant qu'acteur mondial, mais également de se préparer à un éventuel désengagement des États-Unis. Des économies potentielles L'effort financier demandé est aussi justifié par les économies potentielles. « En procédant à des acquisitions communes, nous pouvons économiser près d'un tiers des dépenses actuellement consacrées à la Défense », soutient le président de la Commission européenne Jean-Claude Juncker. « L'UE compte actuellement 178 systèmes d'armes différents contre 30 seulement aux États-Unis », se plaît-il à rappeler. « Lorsque les chefs d'État et de gouvernement déclarent que l'Europe doit à l'avenir se mobiliser encore plus fortement pour protéger la population et assurer sa sécurité, ils doivent traduire leurs paroles en actes, répondre aux questions par des moyens financiers concrets », a estimé M. Juncker en février. Compétence des États membres, la Défense est un poste budgétaire nouveau dans le budget européen. Aucun euro n'avait été budgétisé pour la mobilité militaire sur l'exercice 2014-2020 et la dotation du Fonds européen de Défense était de 590 millions d'euros.

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