The Dassault group is set to sell its 5.7- percent share in Thales, the defense electronics group. “Is there any interest in staying in? My reply is no,” Dassault Aviation chief executive Charles Edelstenne told journalists on Friday.
BAE Systems has all but abandoned Europe. The British defense conglomerate is putting its money into North America, where the budgets are large and the risks are low. But the U.S. government has imposed major bureaucratic controls on all foreign entities that seek to share defense technology. So can BAE ever become a truly integrated transatlantic company?
For more than a decade Italy’s Alenia Aeronautica dreamed of joining Airbus only to have its advances rejected by the group’s French, German and British shareholders. So the subsidiary of the diverse Finmeccanica group has taken to courting partnerships in other countries such as Russia, Greece and Turkey, while increasing its commitment to serving as a Tier 1 supplier to Airbus’ rival Boeing.
While AgustaWestland (Booth No. 1320) continues the integration of its two ancestral helicopter companies–Italy’s Agusta and the UK’s Westland, joined together under Italian industrial giant Finmeccanica in 2000–it is also concentrating on presenting a single corporate face in the marketplace.
Alenia CEO Giovanni Bertolone said that his company’s partnership with Sukhoi for the Superjet 100 regional airliner could expand to include other businesses within the Finmeccanica group and a potential support role for the EADS/Alenia-owned Avions de Transport Regional (ATR).
Selex Sensors & Airborne Systems (Outside Exhibit 2) has flown its new PicoSAR synthetic aperture radar, demonstrating the system’s ability to map both urban and rural areas at altitudes ranging from 3,000 to 9,500 feet.
AgustaWestland is not relocating all its military helicopter manufacturing to the UK, as had been assumed by some in the wake of last month’s dual announcements of a UK Ministry of Defence order for 70 Future Lynx helicopters and the news that the firm’s AW149 model will be built at its facility at Yeovil in southwest England.
The recent announcement that the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has signed a strategic partnering agreement (SPA) with AgustaWestland marks a new chapter in the development of the widely used Lynx helicopter. For, at the same time of the agreement, AgustaWestland was awarded a contract, which launches the Future Lynx program.
Selex Sensors and Airborne Systems UK has become the first major tenant at the new West Wales UAV Centre (WWUAVC) at the ParcAberporth technology park. On July 7, during the ParcAberporth Unmanned Systems 2006 exhibition, Andrew Davies, the Welsh Assembly Government’s Minister for Enterprise, Innovation and Networks, officially opened the center.
PowerJet, the 50/50 partnership between France’s Snecma and Russia’s NPO Saturn, successfully ran up the first SaM146 engine for the Sukhoi Superjet 100 on July 9 at the Rybinsk test and assembly facility.