Sunday, November 30, 2014

Norinco Red Arrow 12 / HJ-12 Multi-Purpose Missile System

The latest addition to the Red Arrow missile family from Norinco, the multi-purpose Red Arrow 12 / HJ-12 is comparable to the American FGM-148 Javelin. The HJ-12 can be operated by a single person or mounted on vehicles.

Using its fire-and-forget mode, the HJ-12 can guide itself autonomously towards the designated target. This removes a key weakness in comparison to previous generations, which relied on input from the operator through wire guidance or laser beam riding.

The shoulder-fired Red Arrow 12 supports two flight modes, top-attack or direct-attack. The top-attack mode is useful against armored vehicles where armor is usually weakest at the top. The direct-attack mode is preferable against regular buildings.

The HJ-12 must be locked on before launch (LOBL) and uses two different seekers. The first version relies on electro-optical / television (TV) for clear-weather / daylight conditions and the second more expensive version uses a imaging infrared (IIR) seeker to give the HJ-12 the ability to be used in all-weather, day or night conditions.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Brazil Signs Contract to Purchase 36 Gripen E/F Fighter Aircraft

Brazil has signed the contract for the purchase of 36 Gripen E/F, the latest version of the JAS 39 Gripen from Sweden's SAAB. While Brazil had earlier reported that it had chosen the Gripen over other contenders such as the French Rafale and the American F-18, the signing of the contract worth around $5.4 billion makes it official.

This makes Brazil the first export customer of the Swedish Gripen E/F, also known as the Gripen NG. Brazil thus joins Sweden, South Africa, Thailand, Hungary and the Czech Republic as countries that have either purchased on leased Gripen aircraft.

Brazil also becomes the first country to purchase the dual-seat Gripen F by including eight Gripen F on top of 28 single-seat Gripen E in the order for 36 aircraft. Sweden, the first to buy the latest Gripen, had only included the single-seat Gripen E in its purchase of 60 aircraft.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

South Korea to Buy 40 F-35A CTOL Fighter Aircraft

The Defense Acquisition Program Administration (DAPA) has announced that South Korea will buy 40 F-35 fighter aircraft. South Korea is the third country to acquire the F-35 after Israel and Japan, besides the United States and eight other countries that are part of the F-35 program.

A contract is expected to be signed soon and will be worth 7.3 trillion South Korean won or about $7 billion for 40 of the F-35A Conventional Take Off and Landing (CTOL) variant to be delivered starting in 2018. They are to replace the F-4 and F-5 aircraft in service.

The F-35, the F-15 Silent Eagle and the European Typhoon were the three candidates that had submitted a bid to be awarded a contract for the F-X III project, which originally sought 60 aircraft for no more than 8.3 trillion won. Only the F-15 managed to stay under the budget allocated.

However, South Korea decided not to select the F-15 despite being the only candidate to meet the original requirements. Instead, the F-35 was selected at the cost of reduced numbers with only 40 to be acquired and not 60 as originally planned.