Potomac Solutions (Stand 2177) and Phoenix Heliparts have entered into a multi-year agreement to provide maintenance and repair organization (MRO) capabilities in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
A General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper crashed into Lake Ontario November 13 after a satellite link to the drone failed. The Reaper was being operated by the 174th Attack Wing from Wheeler Sack Army Airfield at Fort Drum, N.Y., in military controlled airspace above 18,000 feet when control was lost. Another drone, an MQ-1B Predator, crashed at Holloman AFB New Mexico a month ago.
Any potential thaw in U.S.-Iran relations is unlikely to relax long-standing economic sanctions that have hobbled the latter’s commercial and defense aviation sectors for decades. Most recently, United Nations’ Resolution 1696, in force since 2006 and in response to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, has limited Iran’s ability to obtain approved spare and replacement aircraft components and to conduct international financial transactions.
Lockheed Martin’s Missiles and Fire Control division (MFC) is a major supplier of defense equipment to the Middle East and that business is about to arise to a new level thanks to an anticipated sale of its Terminal High-Altitude Air Defense (THAAD) to Qatar.
The U.S. is “gently prompting” the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries to integrate their air- and missile-defense systems, according to American strategic defense consultant Ian Brzezinski.
Last week Iraq took delivery of the first batch of Mil helicopters from the Rostvertol factory. Four Mi-35Ms were delivered to Iraq, their arrival being announced by Iraqi prime minister Nouri Al-Maliki. Iraqi managers, crews and technicians have been training at the Russian army’s Torzhok center, with the first group completing its course in late September. Following the delivery of the initial batch will be at least two more Mi-35Ms, and a sizeable batch of Mil Mi-28NE Night Hunter attack helicopters.
CFM International announced on the eve of the show that it had closed the sale of Leap-1A engines to Pegasus Airlines for its Airbus A320neo/A321neo orders. The Snecma-GE joint venture also gave an update on Leap-1A testing. Separately, the French state has announced a divestiture of at least 3.6 percent of shares in Safran (Snecma’s parent company).
Rolls Royce (Stand 1845) celebrated last week the completion of the 1,500th AE 2100 engine, destined for installation on a Lockheed Martin C-130J and scheduled for delivery to the U.S. Air Force next year. The engine is manufactured and assembled at the company’s Indianapolis, Indiana facility. More than 300 of the four-engined C-130J military transports have been delivered or are on order to customers in 15 countries, according to Rolls-Royce. The company’s firm and announced order book stood at over $110 billion on June 30, 2013.
Airline industry organizations have welcomed new legislation introduced in the U.S. Congress that would prevent the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agency from opening a customs preclearance facility in the UAE.
Military cooperation between Russia and Middle East will certainly be boosted with the recent appointment of Alexander Mikheyev, formerly deputy general manager at arms vendor Rosoboronexport, as the general manager at the Russian Helicopters holding company (Chalet C9). The decision was made on September 24, and is understood to be a move aimed at boosting sales of Russian military helicopters in the global market.