On the night of 27-28 February, two suicide drones hit the Russian refinery in Tuapse. One building appears to have been hit by one of the two drones. This is the second drone attack identified in this time frame against energy targets and located at a very long distance from the front line in Ukraine.
Force projection for Orion 2023: 600 paratroopers jump over Castres, commandos off Toulon and the Navy lands in Hérault
During the first two phases of the Orion 2023 joint exercise, various assets were projected to simulate several missions that could be repeated in future high-intensity operations: tarpon to get to a ship in the open sea, mass parachuting to quickly control an area and amphibious operations to deploy numerous assets from the sea.
A Russian A-50 radar plane was damaged in Belarus
An air attack reportedly took place in Belarus, damaging or destroying a Russian Beriev A-50 airborne surveillance and command aircraft. The attack was allegedly carried out by opponents of the Belarusian regime.
The first Leopard 2s are in Ukraine
During a visit to Ukraine by the Polish Prime Minister, Ukraine received its first Leopard 2A4 battle tanks, delivered by Poland. Ukraine should soon receive many tanks, including a majority of Leopard 2s, allowing it to complete its mass of battle tanks.
726 million euro order for Saab
Saab has just announced the purchase of MANPADS, short-range radars, recoilless rifles and other equipment from an undisclosed country. The 8 billion Swedish krona order represents one of the largest military contracts for Saab since the end of 2022.
Russia deploys BTR-50 APCs produced between 1954 and 1970
Two images circulating on social networks confirm that the Russian Armed Forces have moved antediluvian BTR-50s to Ukraine. Their arrival is not yet explained, as these armored vehicles represent many challenges and few advantages over other retired but much newer vehicles.
Stratospheric selfie: U-2 Dragon Lady and Chinese balloon
During the follow-up flights of the first Chinese balloon, one of the pilots of U-2 Dragon Lady took a photograph with the balloon in question. The high resolution of this one allows to have some additional information on the U-2 and the Chinese balloon.
Indonesia takes delivery of its first C-130J-30 Super Hercules
Indonesia continues to modernize its Air Force with the arrival of its first C-130J-30 Super Hercules. The IDAF has been a loyal customer of the Hercules, with numerous purchases and buybacks of C-130s in various versions since 1959.
Rafale in Serbia: Serbian President ready to invest 3 billion euros
At IDEX, the Serbian President announced that his country was ready to spend 3 billion euros to buy Rafale fighter jets.
The Black Hawk flies in Ukraine!
A photo released by a Ukrainian intelligence service confirms that the Ukrainian Armed Forces have at least one Black Hawk transport helicopter in service.
Saab's GlobalEye enters the competition for NATO's future AEW&C
The AFSC is one of NATO's biggest projects as it plans to replace the Atlantic Alliance's E-3A Sentry aircraft. Via a response to the NSPA, Saab's GlobalEye forward airborne warning and command aircraft (AEW&C) is now among the future contenders.
Germany restarts production of 35 mm shells for Ukrainian Gepard
In order to ensure a steady flow of ammunition for the Ukrainian Flakpanzer Gepard, Germany has decided to restart production of 35 mm shells. The first of the 300,000 German shells should be delivered by July 2023. This decision follows Switzerland's policy of neutrality, prohibiting the export or re-export of ammunition to Ukraine.
First flight of an NH90 with sustainable fuel
The DGA has confirmed that it has successfully flown an ALAT NH90 with an engine powered by 84 percent sustainable fuel. In addition to reducing the helicopter's CO2 emissions by 75 percent and analyzing the effects of this biofuel, the DGA is also marking a world first in terms of the biofuel percentage used.
Poland receives its first MQ-9A Reaper
The first Polish Reaper UAV is now in service with the Polish Air Force. It should help fill a capability gap that has become urgent with the increase in tensions in Eastern Europe. This capability gap should definitely be filled by a probable future purchase of MQ-9B UAVs.
USAF F-22 shoots down a flying object over Alaska
On February 9, NORAD detected an object flying at an approximate altitude of 43,000 feet. The next day, while it was over the coast of Alaska, the President of the United States ordered it shot down. The target in question had already been identified by two fighter patrols the day before. The Pentagon confirmed that the object was not of the same size as the recently shot down Chinese balloon but did not specify the type of flying object destroyed in flight.
Iranian underground base: between propaganda and reality
Several videos from Iran confirm that the Eagle 44 air base has recently been put into operation. Its underground complex is used to protect fighter planes against possible air attacks. However, several details suggest that this base is only used for propaganda purposes and that its usefulness in case of war is very limited.
War economy: the 5 mains actions to "produce more and faster" for the French Defence industry
At the weekly press briefing of the Ministry of the Armed Forces, the head of the DGA's industrial affairs and economic intelligence department presented an initial assessment of the actions carried out to promote the war economy. Alexandre Lahousse unveiled the five projects underway to accelerate production rates.
FCAS : Hensoldt awarded a 100 M€ contract by French procurement agency DGA
HENSOLDT has been awarded a contract worth approximately 100 million euros by the French procurement authority DGA for the development of demonstrators of the novel sensor network in the German-French-Spanish armament project Future Combat Air System.
Two U.S. U-2 Dragon Lady and a very secret RC-135U spied on the Chinese balloon
The USAF has confirmed that the Chinese balloon was tracked by at least two U-2 Dragon Lady reconnaissance aircraft. The aircraft tracking sites on the lines and the balloon's position also confirm that a very rare and secretive RC-135U Combat Sent electronic reconnaissance aircraft had been deployed in the balloon's path.
Hensoldt jamming system proves effectiveness in flight tests
Hensoldt has proven the effectiveness of its jamming system "Kalaetron Attack" against air defence radars of various types for the first time in extended flight tests.
10 billion dollars for 486 Polish HIMARS
The Pentagon has just authorized the signing of a contract with Poland for the purchase of 486 HIMARS. This contract, estimated at 10 billion dollars, includes various munitions but also and above all 18 M142 HIMARS and 468 launchers to be placed on Polish trucks. This Polish purchase request was made in order to increase the firepower and modernize the capabilities of its Armed Forces. It has also recently ordered South Korean K239 Chunmoo rocket launchers, which will be used alongside the American-made HIMARS.
A Chinese sixth-generation tailless fighter
A recent promotional video seems to confirm that China is focusing on a tail-less, sixth-generation fighter aircraft project in the form of a flying wing. Another flying wing project is also underway and involves a strategic bomber, but this concept is fairly new to China's defense industry, which is used to aircraft with a more conventional configuration.
Force projection capacity : French Rafale over Romania
Early this morning, the French Air Force sent two fighter jets and two tankers into Romanian airspace and the Black Sea. The objective of this eight-hour mission is not known, but it demonstrates once again the force projection capabilities of the Air Force: the fighters flew more than 1,900 kilometers before arriving at their patrol area.
Unidentified stratospheric balloon flies over Montana
An unidentified stratospheric balloon has flown over the American state of Montana. The nationality of this balloon has not been confirmed, but the American media seem to lean towards a balloon of Chinese origin. The theory that the balloon took images of intercontinental missile silos in the state is highly unlikely.
Leonardo : Guardia di Finanza opens Air-Naval Operations Simulation Centre in Italy
Guardia di Finanza (Italy’s Police Force, with general capability in economic and financial matters, is the only maritime Police Force in Italy) opened its Air-Naval Operations Simulation Centre.
105 new surveillance drones for the Ukrainian army
Germany's Quantum-System GmbH has agreed to deliver 105 Vector long-endurance reconnaissance drones to the Ukrainian Ministry of Defence. This contract follows a delivery of 33 Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) of the same model in August 2022.
DARPA launches Phase 1 of its strategic transport seaplane
DARPA has officially appointed two teams of industrialists to propose a seaplane concept with transport capabilities of over 100 tons. Both teams have already released an image of their concept, which turn out to be very different from each other.
Hensoldt and Fraunhofer work together on space surveillance radar
Hensoldt has agreed to cooperate with the Fraunhofer Institute for High Frequency Physics and Radar Technology FHR with the aim of transforming the technology demonstrator GESTRA (German Experimental Space Surveillance and Tracking Radar) into a series-production ready.
Indra develops the third NH90 helicopter simulator for the Spanish Armed Forces
Indra has been awarded an 19.2 M€ contract for the development and supply of a new NH90 FMS (Full Mission Simulator) for the Spanish Air and Space Force.
Another military contract for Saab
Saab has been awarded a new contract to support and maintain the Swedish Armed Forces' ground-based anti-aircraft systems. This latest contract joins a series of contracts with Sweden and other countries in a wide range of military fields. These contracts bring Saab more than €841 million in contract value in a month and a half.
Ukraine orders short-range anti-aircraft system from Thales
Ukraine, represented by Defense Minister Reznikov, has signed a contract with France and Thales for the future delivery of a short-range anti-aircraft system. Although specific details of the system are not yet known, the contract already specifies that the system will include a Thales Ground Master 200 medium-range radar.
One of the latest versions of the M2 Bradley for Ukraine
The U.S. DoD has released images of the first batch of M2 Bradley armored vehicles for the Ukrainian Forces and on their way to Europe. The images confirmed that the Ukrainians will not be receiving an older version, but one of the latest variants of the armored infantry fighting vehicle.
Airbus launches European Defence Fund R&D projects
Airbus has launched two defence research and development projects that it is coordinating as part of the 2021 European Defence Fund (EDF).
Pentagon identifies problems with KC-46A cargo capability
While the KC-46A had already been investigated for defects in its refueling cameras, a new comprehensive report points to other defects. These all concern the cargo-carrying capacity of the Pegasus; non-compliant load guidance system, problems with the system allowing the calculation of the aircraft's weight and balance point, etc.
700 Aster anti-aircraft missiles for France and Italy
On 30 December, OCCAr awarded a contract to the EUROSAM consortium for the purchase of 700 Aster family anti-aircraft missiles. These missiles will equip the French and Italian armed forces. The contract includes Aster 15 and 30 missiles, as well as the future Aster 30 B1NT.
First international deployment for the new American "nuke-sniffer" aircraft
The first example of the new version of the Constant Phoenix is currently deployed from the island of Puerto Rico. This WC-135R, accompanied by a tanker, makes very long flights along the national airspace of South American countries.
Certification test : CH-53K sling-loads an F-35C
The CH-53K continues to confirm its lifting capabilities by slinging the CF-01 prototype of the Lightning II's naval air version. The King Stallion, in addition to transporting troops and equipment, must also be able to serve as a flying crane to evacuate equipment damaged by the enemy or simply crashed. The CH-53K has already performed one such mission, recovering a crashed MH-60S in Nevada.
New Zealand's P-3 Orions take a well-deserved retirement
New Zealand has just retired its last P-3K2 Orion aircraft. These aircraft have flown just under 150,000 hours in 57 years of service. They have patrolled many seas, oceans and continents. One of the New Zealand P-3 Orions even holds the record for the longest flight in the world P-3 Orion fleet. These six P-3K2s will be replaced by four P-8A Poseidons.
First liftoff of the Electron microlauncher from Virginia
The small launcher from the U.S.-NZ company Rocket Lab flew its 33rd mission on January 24. It was launched for the first time from the Wallops Island base.
HENSOLDT and 21strategies collaborate on next-generation artificial intelligence for defence systems
Sensor solutions provider HENSOLDT and AI company 21strategies agree on a strategic collaboration. The aim is to jointly drive the development of next-generation artificial intelligence (AI) for defence systems.
Defence : Indra concludes modernization of Brazilian Air Force air traffic radars
Modernization by Indra gives radar systems greater capacity to detect aircraft, thanks to the integration of new digital systems for receiving and processing ADS-B signals, and reduces maintenance costs.
Defence: a high level of cyber threats in 2022
In its "Panorama of the cyber threat 2022", the French Agency ANSSI reports on the main trends of the cyber threat in 2022. The trends observed the previous year have been confirmed, despite the intensification of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and its effects in cyberspace.
Defence : Airbus to provide satellite communications for Belgian Armed Forces
Airbus has signed a contract with the Belgian Ministry of Defence to provide tactical satellite communications services for a 15 year period.
France to spend €413 billion on Defence between 2024 and 2030
After the "repair", the head of the French armed forces wants to launch the "transformation" of the armed forces, announced Emmanuel Macron during his wishes to the armed forces, on the 118 Air Base of Mont-de-Marsan.
Hensoldt develops SIGINT pod demonstrator for Eurodrone
Sensor solutions provider Hensoldt is developing sensor equipment that can be integrated into a pod to give the recently commissioned Eurodrone a signals intelligence (SIGINT) capability
Space Defence : creation of a NATO space Centre of excellence (COE) in Toulouse
On 18th January 2023, the signing of the “operational” memorandum of understanding in Paris marked the creation of the NATO space Centre Of Excellence (COE) dedicated to space defence.
Austria to exercise options for 18 additional helicopters Leonardo AW169M LUH
The 304 M€ contract for additional 18 helicopters follows the Italy-Austria Government-to- Government (G2G) Agreement amendment signed in December 2022 and brings to 36 the total number of AW169M LUH for the Austrian MoD.
HENSOLDT delivers more air surveillance radars to Ukraine
Hensoldt is supplying two more of its TRML-4D high-performance radars to strengthen Ukraine's air defence. The two radars will already be delivered in the next three months.
The cyber weapon in Ukraine: three lessons to be learned
At a press briefing of the French Ministry of the Armed Forces, the head of the Cyber Defense Command analyzed the use of cyber in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict, identifying three main lessons on the role of this "stealthy and discreet weapon, with a lightning effect".