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Category Archives: Air

F-35 vs F-18: It’s child’s play

Breaking a complex problem down to its lowest common denominator is often an effective method for solving said problem. In the case of the F-35, what if a child were given a toy F-35 to play fighter planes with his brother, who has 3 F-18 Super Hornets? Well, funny you should ask…

The Great Libyan Gold Rush

With the official bilateral visit of UK Defence Minister Philip Hammond to Libya last week, there comes the news of the “reborn” nation finally opening up its defence coffers with reports of a $4.7 billion budget approval designed specifically to modernise the rusting armed forces, following decades of underfunding and the overthrow of a paranoid regime.

While the British defence industry is certainly on the books to help begin the rebuilding of air defence infrastructure taken out by NATO two years ago, other nations are also being consulted on delivering rapid upgrades to Libyan forces during this time of vulnerability. Defence IQ confirmed with the Libyan Air Force that consultations with Russia and Italy are underway to provide new trainer aircraft. Meanwhile, the fleet of Libyan C-130s that have been embargoed in the US for over 40 years are finally being discussed, but the Libyans are veering away from the offer to trade them in for a C-130J replacement.

Those involved in air systems would do well to keep their ears open as other ministers book flights to the Middle East over the coming months. A country that once commanded one of the biggest forces in the region wants to return to its old glory, and unlike many nations across the world today with similar dreams, Libya has the resources to make it happen.

Read more on this development.

Interested in the integration of modern military air weapons and systems? Network with decision-makers in London this May at Air Integration 2013.

Air-weapons-integration

‘ARGO’: The other side of the story

personnel-recovery-argo

Despite the latest cinematic adventure celebrating a successful joint personnel recovery operation thanks to the collaborative work of Canadian and U.S. agencies, we must not forget the far less successful endeavour to rescue others during this time.

In this article, James P. Farwell explores the long-term impact of Operation Eagle Claw, the aborted personnel recovery effort that cost lives and careers, including that of President Jimmy Carter. Could a single question that went unasked have turned this tragic story into a Ben Affleck worthy sequel?

Decades may have passed since this misstep, but personnel recovery remains a burning issue today with recent experiences in Afghanistan and the Horn of Africa demonstrating the importance of effective planning.

As such, many in the global personnel recovery field will be gathering in London for the annual Joint Personnel Recovery conference this May, where topics of discussion will range from training operators in isolated situations and developing the capability to rescue military and non-military alike from behind enemy lines.

For more information on how to be a part of this important conference, visit www.JointPersonnelRecovery.com

joint-personnel-recovery

Join Senior Military Representatives and Industry Heads at Airborne Early Warning

Press Release:

Defence IQ, London UK 15/01/2013

Senior military decision makers and industry heads will be gathering in Paris at the end of the month to discuss how operating environments are shaping new platform and upgrade requirements for both emerging and established military powers within the airborne early warning and battle management environment.

Defence IQ’s 12th annual Airborne Early Warning & Battle Management conference is widely regarded as the most well respected and independent forum targeted at the AEW&BM community. Each year provides the top military speakers, cutting edge themes and industry solution developments. This year’s agenda is no different and is available at http://www.airborneearlywarning.com.

Ahead of the conference, programme leaders from the US Navy and Northrop Grumman Corporation have detailed the progress on the E-2D Hawkeye in an exclusive interview ahead of the company’s involvement in Paris. Listen to the full interview with Bart LaGrone, Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems vice president for the Airborne Early Warning and Battle Management Command and Control (AEW/BMC2) programmes, and the new USN programme manager for the E-2D, Captain John “Chet” Lemmon at http://www.airborneearlywarning.com.

See who you could meet at Airborne Early Warning & Battle Management by viewing the 2013 delegate list, which is available to download now from the event website.

Notes to editors:

If you would like to attend Airborne Early Warning as press, please get in touch with Samantha Tanner at defence@iqpc.co.uk.

Airborne Early Warning & Battle Management 2013 is sponsored by Northrop Grumman and Saab.

About Defence IQ:

Defence IQ is an authoritative news source for high quality and exclusive commentary and analysis on global defence and military-related topics. You can join the 65,000-strong community now for free: http://www.defenceiq.com/join.cfm

Prince Harry arrives in Afghanistan, show some respect

by Andrew Elwell, Editor, Defence IQ

Captain Wales has arrived in Afghanistan for a four month tour of duty as an Apache helicopter pilot five years on from his first stint at Camp Bastion.

It’s been 47 minutes since media outlets were allowed to report on the story after being given permission to do so by the MOD following an agreement to keep it under wraps until the Prince had safely landed in Afghanistan. All of them (that I’ve read, so far) have made reference to his antics in Las Vegas and Twitter has come alive with “chopper” jokes.

This is poor form, surely?

It’s difficult to ignore the furore that Harry created a few weeks ago in Nevada, and it would be naïve to think it wouldn’t get a mention following today’s news, but taking a more responsible tone should be the order of the day.

Regardless of background, Harry is a Captain in the British Army.

He is a highly trained soldier with skills invaluable to the mission in Helmand Province. It’s not cheap to train an Apache pilot – last year he said, “You become a very expensive asset, the training’s very expensive and they wouldn’t have me doing what I’m doing (otherwise).”

Over the last decade the British Armed Forces have come to be seen as a highly prized institution by the public, achieving a level of admiration not seen since 1945. Harry is a part of that institution and he should be afforded the same respect we would endow to any other soldier serving in Afghanistan.

So please, no jokes. Nor sniggering.

Good luck Captain Wales.

We’re keen to hear your thoughts – do you agree or disagree with this post? Email comments or article submissions to: haveyoursay@defenceiq.com or comment below.

Questions answered about the Dutch F-35 debacle

After former Dutch defence chief Dick Berlijn, and defence expert, Peter Wijninga, wrote an article espousing the argument FOR the Dutch government to acquire the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Defence IQ’s Yousuf Malik casts a critical eye over the article and asks: are there better alternatives to the F-35?

The pair were recently interviewed [in Dutch] by the popular news website NU for a well-meaning article meant to counter The Hague’s dismay with the growing cost of the stealthy aircraft.

But the argument has holes like Swiss cheese…..or perhaps gaping spaces like slow-moving windmill blades is more a more appropriate description.

The F-35 is more expensive and isn’t as fast or manoeuvrable as has been claimed – it’s hugely delayed and questions have been raised about it’s stealth capabilities. These are the arguments we look at – please read the article in full here.

We’re keen to hear your thoughts – do you agree or disagree with this article? Would you like to write a follow-up article in response? Email comments or article submissions to: haveyoursay@defenceiq.com

F-35: B vs. C

ITEC: The top 5 technologies

Falklands dead honoured at National Memorial Arboretum

Today the National Memorial Arboretum, the UK’s centre of rememberance based in Staffordshire, had a ceremony to officially open its newest memorial – this time to remember the brave that fell during the 1982 Falklands conflict. Here’s a few pictures:

Crowds gather for the unveiling

The Falklands memorial

The Vulcan bomber fly past

Information: The military’s greatest asset

As a decade of operations begin to wind down in Afghanistan, it is clear that the military’s insatiable demand for timely, secure and high quality information will continue to grow exponentially. Some estimates forecast a near 1000% rise in information generation before 2020.

One thing is clear: More than bullets or bombs, information will remain militaries’ greatest force multiplier.

Afghanistan has shown that severe challenges exist in how information is gathered, exploited and shared in the global battlespace. While recent multinational and national networks have gone some way in alleviating a number of these challenges, it is far from certain that future mission networks will not suffer from the same problems.

The solution does not then lie in the military, political or industrial realms alone. A balanced approach will be required so that nations can make the most of the information that is out there.

Industry needs to provide solutions that are simple for people to use, can handle and exploit increasing volumes of data, and not cost the world. Militaries and their political superiors must start to take a serious look at the organisational structures and procedures they employ on operations.

Read the full article here.

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