The defence industry briefing

The news and numbers you need to know about this month

News in numbers


US defence budget passed by Congress - the biggest increase in 15 years


Additional budget confirmed for the UK MoD for financial year 2018-19


Spain's planned investment in weapons systems over 15 years


The Netherlands' planned investment in armed forces modernsation to 2033

Equipment updates

Lockheed Martin has announced its industry partners for the unmanned MQ-25 tanker drone. It will incorporate the General Electric F404 turbofan engine, United Technologies landing gear and internal structures by Triumph Aerostructures.

The US Navy has added $57m to the repair bill for USS Fitzgerald, which was damaged in a collision with SS John S. McCain. The total repair costs for both could reach $600m.

The weaponisation of the US Navy's MQ-8C Fire Scout unmanned helicopter has been put on hold until 2023 while questions surrounding integration with the Littoral Combat Ships' armoury are addressed.

 The US Marine Corps is close to awarding a contract for its new Amphibious Combat Vehicle after conducting opearational tests of BAE Systems and SAIC's prototypes. The contract for 204 vehicles to be deliveredy by 2020 could amount to $1.2bn.

Around the world

News from militaries and defence departments around the globe 

Germany's debate on armed drones goes into the next round

German lawmakers are considering proposals for an armed drone for the German military.  The defence ministry is expected to  place a petition for a €1bn project to lease Heron-TP drones from Israel. The aircraft would be stationed in Israel and managed by Airbus and initially used for surveillance with future strike options. Previous plans to use Israeli armed drones were blocked by the  Social Democratic Party last year. 

Source:  DefenseNews

Orbital ATK tests partially 3D printed hypersonic weapon warhead

Orbital ATK has tested a partially 3D printed warhead for hypersonic weapons on a test range in Texas. The warhead, which has three out of its five major components 3D printed, was created for the US Department of Defense and taken from idea to test in 60 days. The use of additive manufacturing technology is expected to reduce cost and time in the production of future equipment.


France and Germany agree future fighter jet requirements

France and Germany plan to unveil advances in two combat aircraft projects at the ILA air show in Berlin later this month, according to French Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly. The two projects are the Système de Combat Aérien Futur (Future combat air system, SCAF) which aims to replace Eurofighter and Rafale jets for the German and French air forces; and the EuroDrone MALE programme, on which Dassault, Airbus and Leonardo are cooperating.


India launches $19.5bn fighter jet programme - or did it?

The Indian Air Force has 'launched' a $19.5bn programme for fighter jets; however, the Ministry of Defence has pointed out it is only seeking information, with no government commitment. The request for information was issued to all major aviation companies, asking for 110 fighters but lacking detailed specifications. Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Dassault, Eurofighter, Saab and United Aircraft Corporation are expected to submit bids in the coming months. 

Source: DefenseNews

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