UAE’s Potential Mirage 2000-9 Upgrade Expected to Include RDY-3 Radar and TALIOS Pod

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

A Mirage 2000 fighter from the United Arab Emirates. Source: USAF

During Dubai Airshow 2017, held from November 12-16, Thales and the UAE armed forces announced their intention to sign a contract to modernize the UAE Air Force’s Dassault Mirage 2000-9 fighter jets.  Under the potential contract, Thales would upgrade the Mirages’ complete electronics package, including mission computers; fire control radars; electronic warfare suites; optronics systems; communications, navigation, and identification systems; cockpit displays; and helmet-mounted displays. Continue reading

With Rockwell Collins in the Mix, Can Brazilian Firms Penetrate the International Airborne Defense Electronics Market?

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Brazilian companies Savis and Bradar announced the signing of a cooperation agreement to evaluate joint business development for defense applications at the LAAD Defense & Security 2017 conference.  Both companies are affiliated with Embraer Defense & Security and U.S.-based flight deck specialist Rockwell Collins. Continue reading

The ALQ-99, Nearly Finished in Production, Will Receive O&M Funding for Years to Come

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

The AN/ALQ-99 system on EA-6B Prowler Aircraft. EA-6B in foreground carries 3 under-wing jamming pods for transmitting and a single fixed pod on its tail for receiving.

Production of the airborne tactical jammer is expected to end in 2018, with a final 34 units produced from 2017 through 2018.  The ALQ-99 will be superseded by the Next Generation Jammer (NGJ), will start to enter service with the U.S. military in 2020.

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U.S. Defense Electronics Market to Top $135B in Next 10 Years

By Richard Sterk, Defense Electronics Analyst, Forecast International.

America’s political landscape experienced a tectonic shift with the November 8, 2016 election of Donald Trump as President of the United States.  Add to that phenomenon the Republican capture of a monopoly in the legislative branch.  The result is a configuration of power in Washington that will play a serious role in shaping the U.S. defense budget as well as the overall defense market. Continue reading

E-3 AWACS Block 40/45 Pushed Back Two Years

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

An E-3G Sentry (AWACS) patrols the skies over the U.S. on a recent homeland defense mission. (U.S. Air Force photo)

Production of the E-3 AWACS Block 40/45 aircraft, also known as the E-3G, will be delayed by another two years. The delay was announced in the U.S. Director, Operational Test and Evaluation report for FY16. The E-3G completed initial operational test and evaluation (IOT&E) in 2010. Continue reading

Poland’s Wisla Air Defense Competition Could Prove Lucrative for Embattled MEADS

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

MEADS air defense system

Until recently, Poland’s Wisla medium-range air defense contest appeared to be locked up, with the Raytheon Patriot and its re-engineered 360° AESA radar looking poised to win. Now, the competing MEADS team has been granted a renewed opportunity.  Poland recently invited the MEADS International consortium, of which Lockheed Martin is a member, to present an updated offer for the Wisla program. MEADS followed through with a presentation in the final week of January. Continue reading

Could Saudi Arabia Be the First International EMARSS Customer?

by C. Zachary Hofer, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Artist’s rendering of the Enhanced Medium Altitude Reconnaissance and Surveillance System now under development. (Photo by U.S. Army PEO IEWS)

Artist’s rendering of the Enhanced Medium Altitude Reconnaissance and Surveillance System (EMARSS). (Photo by U.S. Army PEO IEWS)

On April 1, the U.S. Department of Defense announced the sale of two King Air 350ERs to Saudi Arabia. Typically, that would not be a very noteworthy occurrence, but this particular contract was awarded to Sierra Nevada of Hagerstown, Maryland, a significant provider of defense electronics and a partner with the U.S. Army on a high-profile King Air 350 program. Continue reading

Financial Fog Inhibits Development of Technology Allowing U.S. Soldiers to See through Obscurants

by Richard Sterk, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Honorable Mention Combat Camera ÒGas...Gas...GasÓ by Sgt. Matthew H. Starling, U.S. Army. A soldier hastily dons his protective mask after an NBC attack literally brings him to his knees.  The attack was part of a unit expert field medical badge course conducted near Camp Humphreys, Korea.

Credit: ‘Gas…Gas…Gas’ by Sgt. Matthew H. Starling, U.S. Army,
  via Wikipedia.

In the midst of sequestration, the United States Army’s Chemical, Smoke and Equipment Defeating Technology program is experiencing budget woes.  Continue reading

U.S. Defense Electronics – Signs of Growth as Budgets Remain Tight

by Richard Sterk, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

US Navy’s C4ISR Systems. Source: CACI

US Navy’s C4ISR Systems. Source: CACI

Defense electronics spending continues to emphasize the development of new technologies, but tight budgets are still restricting R&D.  Militaries are having a difficult enough time getting funding for required items, much less for “pipedream” acquisitions based on advanced concept development – no one is willing to risk the limited money available to flesh out a new and unproven idea. Continue reading

Strong Demand Expected for Critical U.S. Navy Test Equipment

by Andrew Dardine, Electronic Systems Analyst, Forecast International.

Reconfigurable Transportable Consolidated Automated Support System (RTCASS). Source: Naval Air Systems Command.

Reconfigurable Transportable Consolidated Automated Support System (RTCASS). Source: Naval Air Systems Command.

Variants of the U.S. Navy’s Consolidated Automated Support System, in particular the Reconfigurable Transportable CASS (RTCASS) and electronic CASS (eCASS), are expected to be produced in steady numbers over the next several years, driven by the need to maintain military electronics at their highest level of effectiveness. Continue reading