In the era of “smart weapons” a lot can still go wrong, not the least at the interface between the combat aircraft and the missile or bomb. Here at the Paris Air Show, the EDO Corporation is displaying new “solutions” in the specialized and surprisingly complex business of weapons carriage and release.
One set of options for MiG-29 operators involves the cockpit modernization packages offered by Israel’s Elbit Systems. The modular approach allows for the integration of new sensors, systems and weapons, along with an improved man-machine interface.
Russia’s RSK MiG continues to offer new members of the MiG-29 family of multifunctional fighters, including the MiG-29K/KUB, the-29M/M2 and the -29SMT. They feature digital multichannel fly-by-wire systems, color liquid-crystal multifunction displays and hands-on throttle and stick controls.
Unless you have stood next to a Bell/Boeing V-22 Osprey tiltrotor–and you won’t be able to at Le Bourget this week because it’s not here–it is difficult to fully comprehend what an impressive piece of engineering it is and what a struggle of wills it must have taken to bring it to this stage.
Celebrating the fifth anniversary since its formation, Rosoboronexport has successfully promoted the sale of Russian aerospace products, valued at more than $5 billion, for the last couple of years. The company manages about 90 percent of Russian defense exports and current orders totaling some $12 billion will keep the country’s factories busy into at least 2008.
CMC Electronics has completed the avionics systems integration of the cockpit upgrade for the Dubai Air Wing’s L100-30 Hercules, one of which is on static display here. The operator has also selected CMC’s PilotView electronic flight bag (EFB) for installation on its L100.
A Royal Air Force Merlin helicopter is the leading hardware item in a major participation at the Dubai show by the UK Ministry of Defence and its associated Defence Export Services Organisation (DESO).
As competition to meet demands for advanced jet trainers in the region intensifies, Irkut is promoting the Yak-130 now entering production to meet a Russian Air Force requirement. Selected in 2002 as the principal aircraft for basic and advanced training, the Yak-130 has only recently begun rolling off the Irkut production line against an initial order for 12.
Canada has selected the Herc Solutions team to provide ongoing support services for its aging 31-strong Lockheed CC-130 Hercules fleet. Herc Solutions is a team of four major global C-130 support players, with Cascade Aerospace of Abbotsford, Canada, as prime contractor. The other team members are Derco Aerospace, Marshall Aerospace and Standard Aero.
Rolls-Royce is seeking to add the Middle and Far East to its rapidly growing military engines support portfolio, and says significant deals are likely to be forged “in the medium term.”