BAE conteste un contrat de l’US Navy octroyé à Raytheon


BAE Systems conteste la décision de la marine américaine d’accorder un contrat de brouillage électronique à Raytheon, a déclaré jeudi un porte-parole du groupe de défense britannique.

Brian Roehrkasse a dit que BAE avait décidé de protester auprès du Government Accountability Office (GAO), l’équivalent de la Cour des Comptes, car « il s’interroge sur l’évaluation que la Navy a faite de notre offre ».

« La solution que nous avons soumise donnerait à l’US Navy un moyen efficace et abordable d’améliorer sensiblement nos capacités et de protéger nos avions, navires et forces armées », a-t-il ajouté.

Raytheon a décroché le 8 juillet ce contrat de développement de 279 millions de dollars, mais susceptible de représenter au final des milliards de dollars de dollars, de l’avis d’analystes, l’emportant sur BAE et sur Northrop Grumman.

Le nouveau système de brouillage doit en principe être opérationnel d’ici l’exercice budgétaire 2020.


BAE Confirms S. Korea F-16 Upgrade Deal

Aug. 6, 2012 – 10:41AM   |

TAIPEI — BAE Systems confirmed Aug. 6 that South Korea has selected the company to perform an upgrade to the avionics and electronics systems for its fleet of 130 KF-16 Block 52 fighters.

South Korea has not yet delivered the Letter of Request for BAE to be the sole source systems integration contractor, but the letter is expected shortly. The work will be contracted through the U.S. Department of Defense’s Foreign Military Sales program.

BAE Systems will perform a range of services, including systems engineering and integration, software and electronics engineering, obsolescence management, and logistics support. The work will be performed primarily at BAE Systems’ facilities in Florida, Georgia and Texas.

“This is a strategic international win for us, significantly expanding our aircraft upgrade and modification business,” said Dave Herr, president of BAE Systems Support Solutions. “We have extensive capabilities that span across BAE Systems, and I am confident that our team offers the best value to the customer.”

“This selection further demonstrates that we are a leading provider of integration, avionics and mission computers for F-16s, and we will continue to offer our capability to customers across the globe,” said Gordon Eldridge, vice president and general manager of Support Solutions’ Aerospace Solutions business area.

The total estimated addressable market for F-16 avionics upgrades is valued at greater than $3 billion internationally, covering more than 3,000 aircraft. BAE Systems supports 270 of the U.S. Air National Guard’s upgraded F-16s and 50 of the Turkish Air Force’s upgraded F-16s.

The company is now focusing on securing the upgrade contract for Taiwan’s 146 F-16A/B Block 20 fighters. BAE will be engaging Lockheed Martin for the contract valued at $3.7 billion.

Lockheed appears to have a strong lead in winning the competition. The company has a long relationship with Taiwan’s state-run Aerospace Industrial Development Corporation (AIDC) and Taiwan’s Air Force. AIDC and Lockheed signed a memorandum of understanding July 11 to form a strategic partnership to facilitate the F-16 upgrade program.

Source: DefenseNews

Denmark Seeks Bids for Armored Personnel Carriers

Aug. 10, 2012 – 09:56AM   |

LONDON — Eight European armored vehicle builders have been invited by the Danish Ministry of Defence to submit tenders for a family of armored personnel carriers to replace its fleet of aging M113s.

In a tracks versus wheels competition, the Danes have named four potential suppliers from either side of the mobility argument.

Only General Dynamics European Land Systems (GDELS) has a contender in both wheels and tracks sectors.

FFG Flensburger, BAE Systems Hagglunds, Rheinmentall Landsysteme and the Santa Barbara arm of GDELS are representing the tracks sector.

Wheeled vehicle suppliers ARTEC, the Mowag arm of GDELS, Nexter and Patria have also been asked to submit bids.

The companies emerged from a pre-qualification effort mounted by the Danes earlier this year.

Denmark has a requirement for between 206 and 450 vehicles, although around 360 machines is expected to be the most likely procurement number, depending on how many of the M113s the military opts to replace.

The winning vehicle could be under contract before the end of 2014, industry executives said.

The Danish military is looking for six different configurations of the winning design: infantry, command and control, ambulance, mortar, engineering, and mechanical.

The Danes are already operators of BAE’s CV-90, and the Swedish arm of the company is likely to focus on its new Armadillo version of the tracked machine in its upcoming bid.


Lockheed’s F-35 fighter jet under renewed pressure

By Andrea Shalal-Esa

WASHINGTON | Tue Feb 7, 2012

(Reuters) – Key U.S. senators raised fresh questions about Lockheed Martin Corp’s $382 billion F-35 fighter program on Monday as the Pentagon’s top weapons buyer underscored deep flaws in the way the multinational arms program was set up from the start.

The unusually blunt talk about the most expensive U.S. arms program came a week before the release of a fiscal 2013 budget plan that is expected to postpone funding for 179 warplanes until after 2017, a move that has Australia and other international partners questioning their own procurement plans.

Cuts to the F-35 program are part of the Pentagon’s plan to start implementing $487 billion in defense spending reductions over the next decade.

The leaders of the Senate Armed Services Committee blasted Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s decision to lift a « probation » imposed on the Marine Corps variant of the F-35 a year ahead of schedule, saying the move appeared premature and was not vetted with Congress.

Senator Carl Levin, the committee’s chairman, and Senator John McCain, its top Republican, cited continuing cost overruns on the F-35 program and said Panetta had wasted a chance to « focus Lockheed Martin’s attention and disrupt ‘business as usual’ in this multibillion-dollar effort. »[ID:nL2E8D6IKK]

They said Lockheed’s fourth production contract for 32 F-35 jets was expected to overrun its target cost of $3.46 billion by $245 million, and that the cost of retrofitting planes already built would add $237 million more to the program’s budget.

Panetta last month threw his support behind the F-35B model, which takes off from shorter runways and lands like a helicopter, during a carefully orchestrated visit to a Maryland military base where the warplanes are being tested.

But a week later, he told reporters the Pentagon would further slow procurement of new F-35s to allow more time for development and testing — news that could prompt the eight international partners to cut or delay their orders as well.

Australia has already said it is rethinking its plans to buy 12 jets, Turkey has put off buying two jets, and Italy may follow suit, according to FlightGlobal. The other partners are Britain, Denmark, Norway, the Netherland, and Canada.


Frank Kendall, the Pentagon’s acting acquisition chief, said the U.S. military was committed to the program, but he told industry executives at a Washington think tank that the United States was clearly « paying the price » for starting production of the new jets years before their first flight test.

« Putting the F-35 into production years before the first test flight was acquisition malpractice. It should not have been done, » Kendall said in remarks after a speech at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Initial development work on the fighter began in 1996 under the Clinton administration. Lockheed then beat out Boeing Co to win the program in 2001, early in the administration of former President George W. Bush.

Kendall said the plane’s problems so far were typical of those seen with other fighter jets and there was nothing that would prevent continued production at the current low rates.

The F-35 has completed about 20 percent of its required testing and should accomplish an additional 15 to 20 percent of testing in each of the coming years, Kendall said.

Lockheed, which says the F-35 will account for 20 percent of its revenues once it reaches full production, insisted that the program was continuing to make good progress, citing Panetta’s decision to lifted probation for the Marine Corp variant and better than expected flight test results for 2011.

Lockheed spokesman Michael Rein said the U.S. government’s plan for concurrent production and development would have affected any winning bidder. He noted that most fighter plane programs had some degree of this concurrency.

« Lockheed Martin has worked hard during the past decade to cost effectively meet government procurement requirements, » he said, noting that each successive batch of F-35 jets had less « concurrency » costs — the cost of retrofitting already built planes to deal with problems found during testing.

Kendall said the Pentagon had counted on improved design and simulation tools to catch possible problems before jets went into low-rate production, but those design tools failed. He said he hoped no more serious issues came up in coming years, which would allow Lockheed to increase output and cut costs.

« The key to getting the cost down on the F-35 is getting the production rate up and we need to do that as soon as we’re ready to do it, but we’re not ready to do it yet, » he said.


President Barack Obama last month nominated Kendall, who has held a series of jobs at the Pentagon since 1982, to permanently take over as chief arms buyer. The Senate must approve the nomination, but no hearing date has been set.

Kendall, who had been the deputy chief arms buyer for the past two years, said he was already working on various initiatives to rein in chronic cost overruns and schedule delays on other major weapons programs, as well as service contracts that comprise about half of Pentagon procurement spending.

He discussed measures to train acquisition officials, review and analyze requirements to understand the full cost of programs before they are launched, and underscored the Pentagon’s commitment to maintaining the defense industrial base.

Kendall also warned that there were no simple, single-point solutions, including the fixed-price contracts favored by lawmakers and Pentagon officials on the F-35 program and others.

He said the United States was not facing another « procurement holiday » and cuts to weapons programs would not be as steep as after the end of the Cold War.

But he said the cuts would approach those post-Cold War levels if lawmakers did not reverse another $500 billion in spending cuts that are due to take effect in January 2013.

Source: Reuters

(Reporting By Andrea Shalal-Esa; Editing by Tim Dobbyn and Richard Chang)

General Dynamics and BAE Systems Team to Develop Affordable ‘Smart’ 81mm Mortar Round

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla., Feb. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/

General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems and BAE Systems have teamed to develop, demonstrate and produce the 81mm Roll Controlled Guided Mortar (RCGM), an affordable 81mm precision mortar round. The companies have been maturing the guided mortar technology over the last 12 months and will be conducting tactical demonstrations early in 2012.

The teaming arrangement between General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE: GDNews) and BAE Systems’ Munitions business, will leverage their respective strengths to provide a low-cost, highly affordable, precision mortar. The 81mm RCGM uses the current UK L41 round and US M734A1 fuze, but incorporates GPS guidance and General Dynamics’ patented Roll Controlled Fixed Canard (RCFC) technology to provide a precision strike capability.

RCGM will put, for the first time, a low-cost indirect precision system into the hands of the front-line soldier, dramatically increasing his combat effectiveness, » said Ian Anderton, managing director of BAE Systems’ Munitions business. « The system’s increased accuracy will help bring effective fire on target quicker and the reduced number of rounds required for a typical mission will mean an approximate 30 percent reduction in logistics demands – an important consideration at the end of extended supply lines in theater. »

Michael Wilson, President of General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems said, « Our teaming with BAE Systems will provide the infantry with a lightweight, portable, precision strike capability based on General Dynamics’ innovative Roll Control Guided Mortar technology. By using existing warheads and fuzing with our low-cost control and guidance system, we can offer a truly affordable precision mortar round to the US, UK and allies across the world. »

Drones : vers une collaboration France / Allemagne

Le 24 novembre 2011 par Rémy Maucourt

Le secrétaire d’Etat allemand à la défense affirme jeudi qu’il est favorable à des programmes d’armement communs entre les deux pays. Le projet le plus urgent reste le développement de drones européens.

« De la concurrence sur des programmes du passé, nous devons passer à des projets communs pour le futur. » Stéphane Beemelmans, secrétaire d’Etat à la défense allemand, s’affiche dans un entretien à La Tribune favorable à de nouveaux projets de défense entre les deux pays.

Le responsable allemand a précisément évoqué les projets de drones actuellement à l’étude en France et en Allemagne. « Je ne crois pas à deux projets de cette envergure au niveau européen », a-t-il expliqué, affirmant travailler « pour aboutir à un projet unique ».

Deux projets avancent en parallèle en Europe pour mettre au point une nouvelle génération d’appareils sans pilotes. Le drone Telemos est proposé conjointement par Dassault Aviation et le britannique BAE Systems, auxquels pourrait aussi s’associer le groupe italien Finmeccanica. En face, EADS développe son drone Talarion. Le groupe européen a récemment signé un accord de coopération avec Turkish Aerospace Industries.

Stéphane Beemelmans estime que la poursuite de ces deux projets concurrents ne se justifie pas, pour des raisons d’interopérabilité, de prix, d’entretien, d’emploi, et de budget. Cette situation rapelle un scénario déjà connu : l’Europe a développé parallèlement deux avions de combat, le Rafale (Dassault) et l’Eurofighter (EADS/Alenia/BAe Systems). Ces deux avions sont aujourd’hui en concurrence pour équiper les armées indiennes et émiraties.

Source: L’Usine Nouvelle

BAE Systems et General Dynamics sélectionnés pour le futur blindé américain

Le 19 août 2011 par Rémy Maucourt

Le Pentagone a sélectionné ces deux groupes pour un projet très ambitieux : le développement du prochain blindé de l’armée américaine.

Ce futur véhicule de combat terrestre (GCV pour l’acronyme anglais) doit équiper l’armée dès Etats-Unis à partir de 2018. Dans les deux prochaines années, BAE Systems et General Dynamics doivent définir un projet « compétitif, abordable et réalisable », selon les termes du Pentagone.

Pour cette phase de mise au point du projet, le Pentagone a alloué 450 millions de dollars à la filiale américaine de BAE Systems et 440 millions à General Dynamics. Le futur engin blindé devra pouvoir embarquer neuf fantassins, et remplacera à terme les véhicules Bradley et Stryker.

Le Pentagone s’attend à des coupes sévères dans son budget, qui a doublé depuis 2001. Lancer ce projet aujourd’hui permet de le sanctuariser, avant que des économies ne soient annoncées.

« Etant donné l’environnement économique auquel est confronté le pays, l’armée de Terre reconnaît qu’il est impératif de continuer à répondre au cahier des charges et de construire un véhicule de combat d’infanterie de prochaine génération polyvalent mais abordable », a déclaré le secrétaire à l’armée de Terre, John McHugh.

Source: L’Usine Nouvelle

DoD Might Cut Jets from 5th F-35 Batch

Published: 8 Aug 2011 16:01

The Pentagon might have to cut the number of F-35 Lightning II fighters it purchases in an upcoming buy to cover increased development costs in early model jets, unless Congress approves a $151 million funding transfer, according to U.S. Defense Department documents.

DoD asked Congress to approve the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) money transfer in a 91-page, June 30 omnibus reprogramming. Congress has yet to OK the measure.

The cost overruns surround 31 of the single-engine jets purchased over the past five years, according to a Pentagon acquisition document. The aircraft were part of the first three low-rate initial production (LRIP) buys.

« If the reprogramming request is not approved, additional funding within the JSF program will be diverted to cover these costs, » the document said.

The additional funds would cover development cost increases involving « both airframe and propulsion contracts, » the reprogramming document said.

In addition to F-35 prime contractor Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman and BAE Systems build parts of the fuselage. Pratt & Whitney builds the engine that powers the stealth jet.

The cost increases came before then-Defense Secretary Robert Gates restructured the multiservice F-35 program earlier this year, according to the acquisition document.

« The JSF program is already working to cover most of the cost overruns internally, » the document said.

Last year, the Pentagon and Lockheed negotiated an LRIP-4 contract for jets that caps the government’s vulnerability to cost increases and rewards the contractor for controlling cost growth. DoD plans to use a similar fixed-price structure during LRIP-5 negotiations later this year.

But if Congress does not approve the $151 million reprogramming, the Pentagon might have to shrink the number of jets purchased in LRIP-5.

« The diversion of additional JSF funds could result in the purchase of fewer aircraft in LRIP 5 and result in future cost increases for the JSF program, » the acquisition document said.

The F-35 is the Pentagon’s largest acquisition program ever, with a total price tag estimated at more than $380 billion, which includes development and production. An updated program cost is expected this fall.

The Pentagon plans to buy 2,443 F-35s, which will be flown by the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps. Hundreds of foreign sales are also expected.

The Air Force jet flies from traditional runways and the Navy jet from aircraft carriers. The Marine Corps version can take off from short runways or smaller amphibious ships and land vertically.

The jet will replace a number of combat aircraft, including the F-16 Fighting Falcon, F/A-18 Hornet, AV-8B Harrier and A-10 Warthog.

After years of development issues, the program had gained steam in recent months, completing flight test objectives faster than most recently planned. However, all 20 F-35 test jets were grounded Aug. 2 following a failure of the aircraft’s power system.

Source: defensenews