This week the Swedish chief prosecutor, Christer van der Kwast, decided to close the preliminary investigation into alleged illegal methods concerned with the sale of Gripen aircraft. Saab’s communications director, Cecilia Schön Jansson, commented that, “the decision is fully in line with what we have claimed all along. We can now put this behind us.”
Rolls-Royce has signed a jointly funded research and technology contract with the UK ministry of defense.
Civil certification of unmanned aerial vehicles has taken on new momentum over the past few years with the realization that there could be a large number of potential uses for them–from law enforcement to, eventually, air cargo. A UK-based European consortium now claims to be leading the world to get UAVs approved for flights in civil airspace in conjunction with Britain’s Civil Aviation Authority.
Professor Terry Knibb, former chief scientist at BAE Systems and a member of the ACARE Integration Team, told delegates at the RAeS conference that while ACARE’s 2020 goals are “still valid,” ACARE recognized that aircraft designs haven’t changed much. For this reason, “Out of the Box” was initiated “to look at the wild ideas, for things with a kernel of possibility that could stimulate step-changes in air transport,” said Knibb.
This promises to be a milestone year for BAE Systems’ growing unmanned air systems business with the first flights of both the demonstrator for the Mantis persistent ISTAR (intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance) aircraft and of the production-standard Herti. On top of this, the UK group will complete manufacturing of its new Taranis demonstrator.
BAE Systems has lined up a half dozen prospective applications for Q-HUD, a compact and lightweight head-up display for smaller business airplanes where space limits the use of overhead projection equipment. A firm commitment from one or more airframe makers could be imminent as BAE Systems works to complete certification of the product before the end of next year.
BAE Systems is working on half a dozen prospective applications for Q-HUD, its new compact and lightweight head-up display that it launched last October for lighter business aircraft for which existing HUD systems might not be suitable. It expects the next level of commitment from one or more airframers could come within a few weeks and says that it is on track to complete certification of the product before the end of 2010.
The four Eurofighter partner nations (Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK), reached an agreement early this month on a course of action concerning the third tranche of Eurofighter production. Tranche 3 covers the final 236 aircraft of the 620-aircraft umbrella contract.
The United Arab Emirates has selected the Alenia Aermacchi M-346 Master to fulfill its advanced trainer and combat support requirement. The UAE Air Force and Air Defense (AFAD) plans to acquire 48 Masters for lead-in fighter training and light attack duties.
BAE Systems has its helmet/headset mounted Q-Sight head-up display (HUD) in its booth here (No. 110) and will start making customer deliveries later this year. Initial deliveries will be made to military customers, who are expected to comprise the bulk of demand, but the company will be making the system available to civil operators as well. BAE sees a significant market for Q-Sight with HEMS operators and law enforcement agencies.