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March 2018 news

Naval Forces, Defense Industry, Navy Technology, Maritime Security

Practically invulnerable underwater combat robots with intercontinental range have been created for the Russian Navy to operate in oceans and at adversary coast. They can be engaged both against warships and strategic coastal facilities. A unique compact nuclear power plant has been created for them and special submarine carriers are being constructed. The vehicle is called Status-6. President Vladimir Putin presented its capabilities to parliament. Experts believe the underwater vehicles are a major deterrence and retaliatory weapon, the Izvestia daily writes.

Lockheed Martin Canada has signed a formal contract with the New Zealand government for ship installation and trials to complete the upgrade and modernization of the ANZAC class frigates. The first of two frigates, Her Majesty's New Zealand Ship (HMNZS) TE KAHA arrived in Victoria yesterday.

The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) appointed for the first time a woman as commander of a warship squadron, the First Escort Division. 44 years old Commander Ryoko Azuma will command four ships including JMSDF flagship Izumo helicopter carrier.

The French Navy (Marine Nationale) announced that the 34F air wing has started flying on the first upgraded Lynx helicopters. The Lynx upgrade program, initiated in 2011, was conducted between the various players in the military aeronautics industry: the Aeronautical Industrial Service (SIA), the French procurement agency (DGA) and the French Navy. It consists in particular of a renovation of avionics and tactical parts of the aircraft in the field of the above surface warfare.

A P-8A Poseidon from the "Mad Foxes" of Patrol Squadron (VP) 5 supported maritime operations in U.S. 5th Fleet under Commander, Task Force (CTF) 57, Feb. 24 - March 3. The first time a P-8A had deployed to U.S. 5th Fleet since 2016, the aircraft conducted missions spanning the area of operation in the Arabian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, Gulf of Oman, Red Sea and Arabian Sea.

Lockheed Martin received a $481 million contract for long-lead-time material in support of the construction of four Multi-Mission Surface Combatant (MMSC) ships. The MMSC is a lethal and highly-maneuverable surface combatant capable of littoral and open-ocean operation. This contract involves foreign military sales to the kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). The vessels, based on the Freedom-class LCS, will be built at Fincantieri Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin.

The Italian Navy (Marina Militare) will get Ballistic Missile Defence (BMD) capability in 2024 with the delivery of its first PPA (Pattugliatore Polivalente d'Altura or Offshore Multipurpose Patrol Ship) vessel in the "Full" configuration. Captain Francesco Gennaro Esposito, Italian Navy General Staff (MARISTAT 7°) future vessels ship design and CMS department, confirmed the information to Navy Recognition during a recent visit at the Leonardo naval test and integration facility near Rome.

A detachment of F-35B Lightning II's with Fighter Attack Squadron 121 (VMFA-121) arrived aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) March 5, marking the first time the aircraft has deployed aboard a U.S. Navy ship and with a Marine Expeditionary Unit in the Indo-Pacific.

The U.S. Navy's 10th Expeditionary Fast Transport (EPF) vessel, Burlington (EPF 10), was launched at Austal USA's shipyard, March 1. The launching of an EPF is a multi-step process at Austal. The ship is constructed in a modular manufacturing facility and is translated to a docking barge and then transported to a dry dock where it can then be submerged into the water and launched. All of this takes place over the course of two days.

A group of Royal Australian Navy submariners have developed an innovative solution to providing temporary accommodation on board submarines.The sailors from Fleet Support Unit - West at HMAS Stirling understood the need to replace the out-dated wooden accommodation beds currently used in the Navy’s Collins class submarines and developed the Submarine Accommodation Capsule.

Austal delivered the seventh vessel in the Independence-variant littoral combat ship (LCS) class to the U.S. Navy. The future USS Manchester is the second LCS delivered to the Navy by Austal in less than six months, following the USS Omaha (LCS 12) commissioning, which took place in San Diego earlier this year.

The AQS-24B, the only deployed and operationally proven, high-speed mine hunting system in the world, with operational speeds of up to 18 knots, will be exhibited at the 2018 Undersea Defence & Security Conference in Portsmouth, U.K., March 20-22. It uses a high-resolution, side scan sonar for real time detection, localization and classification of mines at high coverage rates and a laser line scanner to provide precision optical identification. The AQS series minehunter is used both domestically and abroad and has logged thousands of hours of operation.

BAE Systems awarded Lockheed Martin a contract to equip the Royal Navy's new Type 26 Global Combat Ship with the MK 41 Vertical Launching System (VLS). The MK 41 VLS is the only system capable of launching anti-air, anti-submarine, surface-to-surface and strike-length missiles. Once integrated with the Type 26, the MK 41 VLS will offer the Royal Navy unparalleled flexibility and capability.

Turkish company STM will modernize a second Agosta 90B submarine for Pakistan. The contract signing ceremony for the second submarine under the Pakistan Navy’s Agosta 90B Class Submarine Modernisation Project was held at the premises of Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production, with the attendance of representatives from Pakistan’s Ministry of Defence Production and the Pakistan Navy.

Boeing has been awarded a contract to modernize the U.S. Navy F/A-18 fleet, extending the life of existing Super Hornets from 6,000 to 9,000+ flight hours. In the early 2020s, Boeing will begin installing initial updates to the aircraft that will convert existing Block II Super Hornets to a new Block III configuration.

The Polish Nauta Shipyard has today cut the first steel for the Swedish Navy’s SIGINT ship, officially beginning the production phase of the vessel. The ceremony was also attended by officials from Saab, the Swedish defence group, which awarded the ship construction contract to the Nauta Shipyard, a part of the Polish Armaments Group (PGZ), in 2017.

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