Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Metal Shark Announces Partnership with Damen Shipyards


Boat manufacturer Metal Shark has reached an agreement with Damen Shipyards to market Damen designs, which the company will construct at its Franklin, Louisiana, shipyard. “We are proud to offer globally proven Damen designs as we expand our footprint in new markets”, said Metal Shark's President Chris Allard. “Damen’s impressive portfolio serves as the perfect complement to our own designs, and our location on the Gulf of Mexico puts us within easy reach of many of the most important players in the offshore commercial sector.”
The Damen announcement caps off a busy year for Metal Shark, which announced the acquisition of its new Franklin shipyard in January 2014. In April, Metal Shark hired marine industry veteran Carl Wegener, previously of AUSTAL USA and Kvichack Marine, as its Director of Commercial Sales. The company’s new yard, which became operational in July, is currently producing multiple 45’, 55, and 75’ monohull and catamaran vessels. “We intend to aggressively market a wide range of Damen designs, including fast crew suppliers, harbour and terminal vessels, wind farm support vessels, offshore patrol boats, pushers and tugs, barges, and other specialty vessels”, explained Carl Wegener. “Our new Damen designs, along with the Metal Shark designs that we’re producing at both of our facilities, give us an incredibly diverse product offering that will make Metal Shark uniquely appealing to number of commercial operators.”
Metal Shark’s Franklin yard is capable of producing aluminum and steel vessels up to 250’ in length.
Established in 1986, Gravois Aluminum Boats LLC, and its government/commercial boat entity Metal Shark, are leading suppliers of custom boats for defence, law enforcement, and commercial entities. Key customers include the US Coast Guard, Navy, Air Force, Army, foreign militaries, port operators and pilot associations, fire departments, and commercial entities worldwide. From its two fully self-contained facilities in South Louisiana, Metal Shark produces a wide range of custom monhull and catamaran centre console and pilothouse patrol boats, fireboats, skiffs, and speciality vessels ranging from 16’ to 250’.
For more information on Metal Shark please visit the yard's website at www.metalsharkboats.com.

Thursday, 4 December 2014

EXPONAVAL 2014 Round-Up

Our Chilean Correspondent, Luis Vásquez, reports directly from Viña del Mar, Chile.


Airbus Helicopters trajo sus aeronaves a la EXPONAVAL 2014

La empresa Airbus Helicopters es otra de las compañías que se dan cita en la EXPONAVAL 2014. Esta versión de la feria chilena se desarrolla en la base aeronaval de Viña del Mar, ubicada a 120 kilómetros de Santiago, y en un entorno aéreo como este no podían faltar algunos de los 14 tipos diferentes de aeronaves que ofrece Airbus Helicopters. Entre estas destacan tres que prestan servicio en las fuerzas armadas de Chile:
El AS532 AL: puede transportar hasta 25 soldados de combate y puede ser equipado con lanzadores de cohetes o cañones de disparo lateral. Es capaz de realizar misiones tan variadas como el transporte de tropas, búsqueda y rescate, evacuación médica, transporte aéreo y misiones de apoyo de fuego.
El AS350 B3: conocido por su capacidad de volar en condiciones de altura extremas. Extremadamente versátil, potente y seguro, esta aeronave es también adecuada para el transporte de cargas pesadas y goza del costo de operación directo más económico del mercado en su categoría.
El modelo DAUPHIN: aeronave que posee excelentes prestaciones en cuanto a velocidad, alcance, carga útil y fiabilidad. Su capacidad, de hasta 12 personas, así como sus numerosos equipos de última generación, le permiten tener un alto desempeño.
Alexandre Ceccacci, Gerente General de Airbus Helicopters Chile, declaró que “para Airbus Helicopters es importante estar presentes nuevamente en EXPONAVAL 2014, para poder compartir con este gran operador que es la Armada de Chile los adelantos tecnológicos y soluciones en cuestiones de soporte, los que ofrecemos siempre con el afán de entregar un mejor servicio y contar con productos que sean de última tecnología”.

The Chilean Navy's HA-1 shipborne attack helicopter squadron operates five AS532SC COUGAR helicopters.
(All photos: Luis Vásquez)

IAI destaca el misil BARAK-8 en la EXPONAVAL 2014

La compañía Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) tiene su stand en la EXPONAVAL 2014 y en el exhibe varios de sus productos aunque el que más llamó la atención de los visitantes fue el misil de defensa aérea y anti-misil BARAK-8. Este artefacto es una evolución más potente del BARAK-1 que equipa, por ejemplo, a la fragata Tipo 22 FF-19 “Almirante Williams” de la Armada de Chile. Tiene un alcance de hasta 70 kilómetros y está dotado de un radar de búsqueda activo, en tanto que es impulsado por un motor cohete de dos etapas alimentado con combustible sólido. La primera etapa de la unidad de impulso provee una velocidad de crucero tras el disparo del misil, en tanto que la segunda etapa provee mayor impulso, velocidad y energía cinética en la fase final de aproximación al blanco, reduciendo al mínimo las posibilidades de evadirse de este último. En el stand de IAI también es posible apreciar otros de sus productos estrella, como son el sistema de radar de UAV de patrulla marítima EL/M-2022U que se encuentra en servicio, por ejemplo, en los aviones de patrullaje y exploración aeromarítima P-3A y C-295 de la Armada de Chile; el sistema de radar de ordenamiento en la fase naval liviano ALPHA EL/N/2258; el sistema de misiles guiado por láser con alcance de más de 8 kilómetros NIMROD-SR y que puede ser lanzado de una variedad de plataformas; y hasta el satélite de observación de alta resolución y agilidad OPTSAT3000.


The BARAK-8 air and missile defence system attracts the interest of an increasing number of international customers.

L-3 muestra su ASW Sonar ORION en la EXPONAVAL 2014

En la EXPONAVAL de hace dos años, la compañía L-3 Communications, con su división Ocean Systems, hizo noticia por los cinco sets de sonares sumergibles de baja frecuencia HELRAS para lucha antisubmarina (ASW) que fueron integrados en igual número de helicópteros AS 332 SUPER PUMA. Y este 2014, en la presente versión de la EXPONAVAL 2014, L-3 Ocean Systems ratifica su condición de experta en sonares y tiene en exhibición el ASW Sonar ORION. Se trata de un sonar antisubmarino para uso en buques pequeños, por lo general menos de 300 toneladas, como botes inflables de casco rígido o pequeñas lanchas patrulleras. ORION se puede utilizar para detectar submarinos pequeños que operan en aguas poco profundas, de hasta 10 metros. Su misión principal es la vigilancia activa y pasiva en las zonas oceánicas de poca profundidad cerca de zonas terrestres y de tránsito. Las capacidades de procesamiento y visualización modernos del ORION permiten una fácil operación con una formación mínima. El estado del procesamiento de señales ofrece una amplia gama de FM en pulso único y múltiple, y procesamiento CW para la detección y el seguimiento. También cuenta con cobertura completa de 100 a 3,200 Hz de banda ancha continua. L-3 Communications está integrada por 103 empresas en todo el mundo y es el principal contratista en comando, control, comunicaciones, inteligencia, vigilancia y reconocimiento en los servicios de modernización y mantenimiento de aeronaves, y en la entrega de soluciones de seguridad nacional. Además, L-3 es un proveedor líder en una amplia gama de sistemas electrónicos utilizados en plataformas militares y comerciales.

Omnisys, subsidiaria de THALES en Brasil, ofrece sus desarrollos en la EXPONAVAL 2014

Omnisys, empresa brasileña de tecnología, está presentando sus soluciones innovadoras para el sector naval en la EXPONAVAL 2014. La empresa  integra en la feria el pabellón de la Asociación Brasileña de Defensa y Seguridad de Materiales (ABIMDE), espacio exclusivo para las empresas de Brasil en el sector naval. Omnisys exhibe en la feria naval chilena varias soluciones, entre ellas: Defensa (que es un soporte a equipos de guerra electrónica diseñado para interceptar e identificar señales electromagnéticas alrededor del buque), Sistema de control de la máquina Timón, SCML (que es un sistema de control, en modo manual o automático, de la maquinaria del timón). Pero eso no es todo porque también en el ámbito de los radares, Omnisys es la única empresa brasileña capaz de ofrecer soluciones completas para radares de vigilancia de espacio aéreo, basado en  tecnología avanzada y gran capacidad industrial. Esto se debe a que Omnisys forma parte de la red internacional de centros de excelencia en investigación y desarrollo del Grupo THALES, recibiendo tecnologías y  conocimientos técnicos para mejorar la producción local y expandir sus operaciones en los mercados nacionales e internacionales y  la exportación desde Brasil. Desde su fundación en 1997, Omnisys (subsidiaria de THALES en Brasil) se convirtió en un socio importante de la Marina de Brasil, en el desarrollo de proyectos de alta complejidad como el Sistema de Control de Máquina de Timón (SCML) para la corbeta “Barroso”, Sistemas de Apoyo a  la Guerra Electrónica y radar autodirector (Buscador) MANSUP, proyecto en última fase de desarrollo.

ASMAR exhibe su consolidación en la Exponaval 2014

El Astillero y Maestranza de la Armada de Chile (ASMAR) juega de local en la EXPONAVAL 2014. Y no sólo por ser una empresa del país donde se organiza la feria. También porque atraviesa por un gran momento tras la entrega de dos nuevos buques para Chile. En el 2013 entró en servicio el navío de investigación oceanográfica AGS-61 “Cabo de Hornos” y en 2014 lo hizo el tercer OPV de 1.800 toneladas, construido bajo un diseño basado en el OPV-80 del constructor alemán Fassmer, bautizado como el OPV-83 “Marinero Fuentealba”. Ambas embarcaciones fueron construidas completamente por ASMAR en sus astilleros de Talcahuano. Y en la inauguración de la EXPONAVAL 2014, la Presidenta de la República, Michelle Bachelet, le dio un respaldo al astillero chileno al anunciar que “he dispuesto la construcción de un nuevo patrullero de zona marítima”, con lo que se llegará a cuatro embarcaciones de este tipo. Bachelet también anunció el inicio de “los estudios de factibilidad de un nuevo dique, el número 3 de ASMAR, que permitirá satisfacer la necesidad de mantenimiento de buques post Panamax en la región del Pacífico Sur Oriental”. El tercer anuncio presidencial que dejó por los cielos a ASMAR fue que “se ha dispuesto que se encarguen todos los estudios de ingeniería para poder asumir la construcción de un nuevo buque antártico y así contar con un buque dotado de todas las capacidades necesarias para desarrollar todas las operaciones en el área antártica”. El plan de ASMAR es construir este rompehielos. Por ahora, uno de los buques en exhibición en la EXPONAVAL 2014 es el OPV-81 “Piloto Pardo”, el primero de su clase que construyó el astillero de la Armada de Chile.

ASMAR - the Chilean Navy's high-tech partner with a heritage of nearly 120 years in naval shipbuilding and ship repair.

DCNS muestra su capacidad en la EXPONAVAL 2014

Entre las 140 empresas expositoras que se dan cita en la EXPONAVAL 2014, que se realiza en la base aeronaval Viña del Mar, destaca la compañía internacional DCNS, un actor relevante del mercado en materia de construcción naval e integración de sistemas. En el stand de DCNS en la feria naval chilena se pueden ver u obtener información de varios de sus productos:
El submarino de mediano tamaño SCORPENE, que opera en la Armada de Chile y otras marinas del mundo. Se trata de un submarino que posee, entre otras virtudes, gran capacidad para tareas de patrulla oceánica extendidas. El SCORPENE 1000, un submarino compacto diseñado para operar en aguas costeras, un teatro de creciente importancia para todas las naciones marítimas. SUBTICS, un sistema de combate de submarinos que combina eficiencia operacional, sensores de alto rendimiento y armas de largo alcance. El GOWIND 2500, que es un buque de combate diseñado para vigilancia y combate de las operaciones navales tanto por encima como por debajo del agua, y las misiones de protección y escolta, en particular en el entorno litoral. El GOWIND 1000, un navío de alta velocidad capaz de intervención rápida contra las amenazas emergentes, con una autonomía significativa para el despliegue del litoral a los ambientes oceánicos profundos en tiempo de crisis. El OPV 90 “L'Adroit”, un buque que ha rendido bien en las misiones de seguridad marítima con la Marina de Francia. POLARIS, un sistema de misión compacto y actualizable para la vigilancia litoral optimizado y en servicio operativo desde 2012 a bordo de la OPV 90 “L'Adroit”.

DCNS' world-class naval ship portfolio, encompassing destroyer- and frigate-size combatants, frigates, patrol ships (OPV) and large amphibious landing ships.

Damen anuncia nuevo contrato en la EXPONAVAL 2014

Se sabe que las ferias internacionales son excelentes lugares para que las empresas anuncien sus nuevos contratos como una forma de mostrar su capacidad industrial y de negocios. Es el caso de Damen Shipyards Group, que en la EXPONAVAL 2014 anunció un acuerdo con el fabricante de barcos Metal Shark Aluminum Boats para comercializar los diseños Damen que la empresa construirá en su nuevo astillero localizado en Franklin, Louisiana (Estados Unidos de Norteamérica). “Tenemos la intención de comercializar agresivamente una amplia gama de diseños Damen, incluyendo buques de transporte rápidos, embarcaciones de servicios de puertos y terminales, buques de apoyo para parques ecológicos, patrulleras de alta mar, remolcadores, barcazas y otras embarcaciones de especialidad”, explicó Carl Wegener, director de ventas de la compañía. “Nuestros nuevos diseños de Damen, junto con los diseños de Metal Shark que producimos actualmente en nuestras dos instalaciones, generan una oferta de productos muy variada para operadores comerciales y fuerzas militares de todo el mundo”, agregó. Pero Damen Schelde Naval Shipbuilding (DSNS), parte de Damen Shipyards Group, también exhibe, en su stand en la EXPONAVAL 2014, las maquetas de su serie de buques de combate (corbetas y fragatas) SIGMA. Esta tecnología ha sido aplicada en unidades de distintos tamaños, con esloras que van desde los 50 a los 150 metros y desplazamientos de entre las 600 y las 1.500 toneladas, diseñadas bajo un concepto modular. Se trata de buques de combate que podrían interesar a más de alguna marina sudamericana, en especial a aquellas que centran el poderío de sus escuadras en las fragatas.

MBDA luce sus sistemas de misiles en la Exponaval 2014

MBDA, la compañía de los sistemas de misiles, está presente en la EXPONAVAL 2014 y entre el material que exhibe se encuentran algunos productos en servicio en la Armada de Chile. Por ejemplo, dentro de la línea EXOCET se puede apreciar tanto el AM39, que cargan los helicópteros SUPER PUMA, como también el SM39, que es el armamento de los submarinos SCORPENE. También es posible apreciar el modelo MARTE, que se trata de un misil antibuque de mediano alcance de última generación (puede ser lanzado desde plataformas aéreas con alas fijas/rotatorias, desde buques de 30 a 50 metros de largo o montado en vehículos para batería de costa). Otro de los productos es el MISTRAL, que es un misil de defensa antiaérea de corto alcance y que es compatible con varios sistemas de lanzamiento. Siempre en el mismo stand se ven misiles antiaéreos de mayor alcance como el ASTER (sistema antimisiles superficie-aire) y el CAMM (misil de defensa antiaérea de última generación). El CAMM es el misil que la marina real británica está usando para reemplazar el SEA WOLF en sus fragatas tipo 23 (como las que tiene Chile). MBDA acompaña desde hace tiempo a la EXPONAVAL y en la presente versión de la feria el trofeo de la regata a vela tuvo el nombre de Copa Itaú-MBDA. “Exponaval es la única feria naval internacional en la región y entonces tenemos que tener una presencia. También Chile es un cliente de MBDA, un país donde tenemos varios productos en operaciones y estamos proponiendo otros nuevos. Entonces, para nosotros, la presencia en Exponaval es fundamental”, dijo Patrick de La Reveliere, vicepresidente de ventas y exportaciones de la compañía.

MBDA's Vice President Sales & Export, Patrick de La Reveliere, presenting the EXOCET MM40 Block 3 anti-ship missile. 

Rolls-Royce exhibe sus diseños en Exponaval 2014

Una de las particularidades que se pueden ver entre los diferentes stands de las 140 empresas que se dan cita en la Exponaval 2014 es apreciar la maqueta de un buque construido en ASMAR, el astillero de la marina chilena, que fue encargado por una empresa europea: Rolls-Royce. En efecto, se trata del patrullero multipropósito THOR – Rolls-Royce UT512 L, construido en Chile por ASMAR para el servicio de guardacostas de Islandia, y que es una embarcación que incluye cubierta de vuelo y sistemas para combate de incendios, abastecimiento de combustible a helicópteros en vuelo, recuperación de hidrocarburos e investigación submarina. Pero Rolls-Royce no sólo muestra con orgullo el THOR: también promueve el diseño de guardacostas MPV 55 Tipo SEADI. La empresa también aprovecha de difundir otros productos de su cartera como ingeniería, sistemas de propulsión, sistemas eléctricos, sistemas de control y automatización y turbinas. “Nuestros productos están en servicio en setenta marinas del mundo”, es uno de los lemas que se puede leer en la carpeta de presentación de la compañía. En lo que a turbinas de Rolls-Royce se refiere, hay fragatas de la escuadra chilena que cuentan con ese producto por lo que el tema es relevante en esta parte del mundo. En la EXPONAVAL la marina británica confirmó que hay un acuerdo para modernizar las fragatas tipo 23 del Reino Unido para que operen hasta el 2020 lo que tiene relevancia para la Armada de Chile ya que tiene en su escuadra tres fragatas de ese mismo tipo y el soporte que se entregará a las unidades británicas también debe servir para los navíos chilenos. Y Rolls-Royce es una de las empresas que dará ese soporte.

Saab muestra entrenamiento e integración de sistemas en la Exponaval 2014

Saab, una compañía de tecnología para los sectores de defensa y seguridad con sede en Suecia, y una de las pocas en el mundo capaz de desarrollar, producir y entregar los sistemas de defensa de las tres ramas de las fuerzas armadas (terrestre, aéreo y marítimo), entrega soluciones para la defensa naval y las comunicaciones durante la EXPONAVAL 2014. Entre las soluciones se expondrán RBS 15 Mk3, la última versión del misil antibuque de la compañía; el AUV-62, un sistema de formación para guerra antisubmarina (ASW) rentable; la ERIEYE AEW radar aerotransportado de vigilancia marítima y aérea; y Tacticall, una solución para la integración de los diferentes sistemas de comunicación. “Estamos muy contentos de participar una vez más en Exponaval para presentar nuestras últimas soluciones para el ámbito naval y el dominio marítimo. Hemos demostrado nuestra capacidad para ofrecer productos de clase mundial y soluciones asequibles para América Latina y esperamos poder mantener relaciones a largo plazo con nuestros clientes”, informó, en un comunicado de prensa, Bo Torrestedt, vicepresidente senior de Saab en América Latina. Durante la EXPONAVAL 2014, que se realiza entre el 2 y el 5 de diciembre en Concón (en la base aeronaval Viña del Mar, a 120 kilómetros de Santiago), los visitantes al evento ferial tendrán la oportunidad de aprender más acerca de la división de sistemas marinos de Saab, que además de diseñar, construir y mantener sistemas navales tales como los submarinos y buques de superficie, tiene sistemas de propulsión independientes, vehículos de rescate de submarinos y sistemas de contramedidas de minas.

Saab Group showcasing Double EAGLE MkIII, the company's high-tech ROV for the disposal of naval mines. 

Kongsberg despliega sus medios en la Exponaval 2014

Al mirar los productos que puede ofrecer el grupo industrial noruego Kongsberg, presente en la EXPONAVAL 2014, se aprecia la misma excelencia que en la versión anterior de la feria en el 2012. Por ejemplo, el vehículo autónomo subacuático (AUV) HUGIN que puede ser construido en diferentes tamaños, de acuerdo los requerimientos de las organizaciones interesadas en comprarlo. También destaca el NASAMS, el sistema de defensa antiaérea que fue encargado por Chile el 2010 al fabricante noruego y del cual ya la Fuerza Aérea chilena cuenta con dos batería activas desplegadas en las bases aéreas del norte del país, mientras que una tercera batería móvil de NASAMS apoya a una de las brigadas acorazadas del Ejército. También están los sonares de guerra antisubmarina ST2400 y SS2030 y el misil NSM (Naval Strike Missile) que fue protagonista en un ejercicio de hundimiento en el marco de las maniobras del RIMPAC 2014. Y no se puede olvidar al misil PENGUIN. Pero lo que más impresiona es la bella imagen de un rompehielos con un equipamiento capaz de “operaciones en el hielo más duro”. Esto justo en un momento en que la Armada de Chile necesita reemplazar su buque polar “Almirante Viel”, próximo a cumplir su vida útil, por una embarcación con capacidad para ir a la Antártica en cualquier época del año. “Estamos muy satisfechos con la organización de esta nueva versión de la EXPONAVAL. Aquí podemos reunirnos con las personas que nos interesan, con las organizaciones, con las tres ramas de la defensa nacional de Chile y también con el mundo civil de Chile”, dice Kyrre Lohne, vicepresidente de comunicaciones estratégicas de Kongsberg.

Established on 20 March 1814, Kongsberg Group (KOG), originally Kongsberg Våpenfabrikk, celebrated 200 years in business in March 2014. Over the years, Norway's high-tech firm has grown to represent the best of Norwegian and international product and technology development.

THALES presenta soluciones navales en la EXPONAVAL 2014

La compañía francesa THALES Group es líder mundial en los mercados aeroespacial, de transportes, defensa y seguridad. Ofrece soluciones y servicios para plataformas como submarinos, navíos de superficie, helicópteros, aeronaves de patrulla marítima y sistemas navales no tripulados. En Chile tiene presencia desde 1968 tanto en las fuerzas armadas, como en la dirección general de aviación civil y en el sistema de transporte urbano (Metro de Santiago). En el caso de la Armada chilena, bajo un contrato con Thales se integró el sistema de radar remolcado 2087 en las fragatas del Tipo 23 y también las fragatas antiaéreas están equipadas con radares para la defensa aérea de largo alcance provistos por THALES. En la presente versión de la EXPONAVAL 2014 (la feria naval y marítima organizada por la Armada de Chile junto a la empresa FISA en la comuna de Concón, a 120 kilómetros de Santiago), esta compañía asiste como la principal empresa auspiciadora y presenta diversos equipos y soluciones, principalmente en las siguientes áreas: guerra de superficie, guerra submarina (es el mayor exportador mundial de sonares), sistemas de vigilancia marítima, servicios y sistemas de comunicación totalmente integrados. El grupo también proporciona equipos y sistemas de última generación: radares, optrónica, comunicaciones y guerra electrónica. “THALES ha establecido una relación de larga data y se ha constituido en un socio de confianza para las Fuerzas Armadas de Chile a lo largo de los años. Exponaval es una gran oportunidad de estrechar estos lazos y presentar cómo THALES puede continuar contribuyendo con la Armada de Chile por medio de su experiencia internacional y sus innovadoras soluciones, productos y servicios”, explica José Antonio Pellegrini, director general de THALES en Chile.

THALES provides support to Chile's ASMAR for the maintenance of THALES equipment on-board the Chilean Navy's four frigates received from Royal Netherlands Navy surplus.

Friday, 28 November 2014

ATLAS Elektronik GmbH at IDEAS 2014 in Karachi

Submarine Technology from ATLAS Elektronik Influences Events in the Maritime Battlespace

ATLAS Elektronik GmbH from Germany participates in the IDEAS 2014 International Defence Exhibition and Seminar in Karachi, Pakistan, by presenting two key products: the ISUS 90 submarine combat management system (CMS) and the SEAHAKE DM2A4 torpedo system, according to Steffen Leuthold, the company’s Head of Communications.
Variants of the ISUS 90 CMS can be found on diesel-electric and fuel cell submarines of 10 different countries, including Chile, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, South Africa, South Korea, and Turkey. According to the company, the fully integrated sensor, C2, and weapon engagement system is scalable depending on the weapons (torpedoes, anti-ship missiles) carried by the submarine. Additionally, to cope with a customer’s individual requirements, variants of the ISUS 90 CMS can consist of four, five or six consoles. As a ‘low cost, low risk’ solution, the ISUS 90 CMS will be in a strong position if selected for other international submarine programmes.

The ‘tried and tested’ ISIS 90 CMS can easily be adapted to suit individual customer requirements and diverse operational scenarios.
(All photos: ATLAS Elektronik GmbH)
The SEAHAKE is a dual-purpose, fibre-optic wire-guided heavyweight torpedo (HWT), featuring a modular battery system and an electric propulsion motor with very low self-noise. The HWT has been sold to a number of countries, including Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Germany, Greece, India, Indonesia, Israel, Norway, Peru, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Turkey, and Venezuela. The latest success includes deliveries for the Pakistan Navy’s AGOSTA 90B and Spain’s “Isaac Peral” class (S-80A) submarines. ATLAS Elektronik developed a 300µm wire for the torpedo weapon selected by the German, Pakistan, and Spanish Navies.
The SEAHAKE HWT features eight sections containing the homing head with conformal transducer-array and wide panorama angle; the electrolyte-activated, fully-capsulated battery section with up to four primary batteries with cooling system; the warhead with large explosive charge and impact and proximity fuses outfitted with safety and arming devices; the electric high-frequency permanent magnet motor with very low self-noise and planetary gear box; asymmetric skew propellers with a nine blade front and a seven blade rear propeller; the electronics section with wake sensor and central computer for all torpedo functions; the guidance section with fibre-optic guidance wire; and the rear section. The HWT offers fully digitised, jam-resistant signal processing. ATLAS Elektronik also markets the SEAHAKE Mod 4 ER torpedo. It is designed for network centric warfare, littoral warfare, and coastal defence. Its maximum combat range is quoted at 140km (76nm). The torpedo can be launched from surface ships and attack submarines.

Above: The SEAHAKE Mod 4 ER long-range torpedo was first test-fired in March 2012 in the Eckernförde Bay with cooperation of the German Armed Forces’ Technical Centre for Ships and Naval Weapons (WTD 71); in the background is the SEAHAKE DM2A4 HWT.
Below: The high-frequency permanent-magnet AC motor of the SEAHAKE DM2A4 HWT provides a 50% increase in maximum speed and a 400% increase in energy content compared with the DM2A3 while the weapon is 50% quieter. 





Tuesday, 25 November 2014

EURONAVAL 2014 Post Show Report

Innovative Re-Thinking 
EURONAVAL 2014 expected over 350 exhibitors from nearly 30 countries, including 90 government delegations from 65 countries. The exhibition highlighted a number of new products and concepts, among them THALES’ SEA FIRE 500 multifunction naval radar; AUTOPROTECTION, an integrated, non-lethal anti-piracy system developed by an industrial consortium composed of Amefo, Bureau Veritas, Eca Robotics, ENSM, Lacroix, SAGEM, Sofresud, SeaOwl, and THALES; MTU’s 6R166 M20 six-cylinder marine engine; THALES’ new SEARCHMASTER multirole surveillance radar with AESA technology. Also, MBDA’s SIMBAD RC ship self defence system has now entered the qualification phase, with first deliveries of series production units expected in 2015. Some of these innovations are detailed below.

Admiral Osama el-Gendy (centre), Chief of the Egyptian Navy, visiting the stand of ThyssenKrupp Marine Systems on 28 October 2014.
(Photo: Stefan Nitschke)

Integrated Above and Underwater Security System Unveiled

ATLAS Elektronik UK and Signalis and have jointly developed an interface for the CERBERUS Mod 2 Diver Detection Sonar (DDS) into Signalis’ STYRIS Integrated Maritime Surveillance and Security System. The latter is a single, common software solution for the collection, processing, fusion, and display of data from a wide range of external sensors such as radars, AIS, RDF (radio direction finder), cameras, weather stations, and the CERBERUS Mod 2 DDS. CERBERUS Mod 2 is ATLAS Elektronik’s latest generation diver detection sonar designed to detect and classify open and closed circuit divers, swimmers, swimmer delivery vehicles (SDV), and UUV. It is proven, flexible, and has been qualified for military use. CERBERUS, which is provided in a lightweight, easy-to-deploy package, can be configured for various environments and applications such as permanent seabed installation for 24/7 port and harbour security and surveillance.
Carl Stone, ATLAS Elektronik’s Maritime Security Product Manager, said, ”this has been a really exciting development for [ATLAS Elektronik UK] as it not only solidifies our group relationship with Signalis but it adds another dimension to the capability of our DDS. By integrating [the CERBERUS Mod 2 DDS] into Signalis’ STYRIS system, we now have the ability to combine our DDS underwater picture with above water sensors to provide a fully comprehensive security system.” Both STYRIS and CERBERUS enable multiple sonar head integration. “STYRIS is able to carry out diver track fusion which enables us to operate multiple, overlapping sonar heads simultaneously and display their tracks in one single user display along with multiple above-water sensors”, Stone explained. STYRIS has been thoroughly tested to ensure seamless integration of ATLAS Elektronik’s CERBERUS Mod 2 DDS, which means that integration into existing systems can be carried out with minimal additional cost. “This really is a step forward for our CERBERUS product and brings with it a number of new opportunities”, he noted.
Signalis’ Director of Sales and Marketing, Mark Pearson, commented, “It is very satisfying when two companies are able to ‘fast track’ a solution to meet a market need. Together we have expedited the integration of the CERBERUS Portable [DDS] into our new STYRIS product, providing operators a complete solution for the surveillance and tracking of both surface and subsurface targets.”

STYRIS provides seamless integration of above and underwater sensors, including the CERBERUS Mod 2 Diver Detection Sonar.
(Graphic: Signalis/ATLAS Elektronik UK)

Rafael’s Innovation Triumphs

The very latest presented by Rafael in Le Bourget has been the TYPHOON MLS-ER weapon system. It includes SPIKE-ER missiles, launchers, an EO director, and a fire control system. The lightweight, stabilised system can be installed on a variety of naval platforms, ranging from RHIB to larger boats and ships. According to Rafael, TYPHOON MLS-ER features fire-and-forget, as well as fire-and-observe and update modes of operation, enabling the gunner to switch between targets after launch, avoid friendly fire, conduct surveillance/damage assessment, and attack hidden targets. There also is a fire-and-steer mode, in which the gunner can launch the missile without pre-locking onto the target and manually steer it to the target.
Also, Rafael showcased its C-DOME Naval Point Defence System. It is designed to effectively protect surface combatants against the spectrum of modern threats, handling saturation attacks by engaging multiple targets simultaneously. Reaction time is very short and enables automatic and semi-automatic engagements. Components include a multi-round launcher assembly loaded with vertically-launched, canisterised IRON DOME; the latter achieved more than 1,200 successful interceptions during the recent Israel-Gaza conflict. Up to 10 interceptors can be loaded into the multi-round launcher. Installed under the ship deck, C-DOME utilises the ship’s own surveillance radar and does not require a dedicated fire control radar. Weapon system C2 is seamlessly integrated with the ship’s CMS, facilitating system operation.

TYPHOON MLS-ER draws on the proven SPIKE-ER, an EO-guided multipurpose missile exceeding a combat range of up to 8km (4.3nm) with pinpoint accuracy.
(Photo: Rafael)

Showdown of the Sea deFNder Remote Weapon Station

FN Herstal’s presence in Le Bourget was highlighted by the launching of the new Sea deFNder Remote Weapon Station (RWS), the third model in the deFNder range developed and engineered for use by maritime forces. Its high modularity allows it to be mounted on a wide variety of naval and Coast Guard platforms, ranging from speed boats and patrols up to frigates and destroyers. Sea deFNder provides the advantage of firepower in any scenario, including territorial waters surveillance, self defence, anti-piracy, anti-terrorism, and the interception of drug or weapon smugglers. Its universal cradle can hold any machine gun, from the FN MINIMI 5.56 to the .50-calibre that can be either the FN M2HB-QCB or FN M3R. Also, Sea deFNder can be equipped with 40mm grenade launchers for additional firepower. Prior to its official unveiling in Le Bourget, an order has been placed for a number of Sea deFNder RWS, bringing the total number of units ordered across the deFNder range to over 1,300 for both land- and sea-based applications.


The Sea deFNder (seen here equipped with the FN M2HB-QCB heavy machine gun) shares many features of the deFNder Medium used on combat vehicles, including a sight module (CCD plus IR uncooled or cooled), one-hand or game pad control handle, and ammo box.
(Photos: FN Herstal)

OTO Melara Unveils HITROLE Sea Cat 20mm Naval Weapon

The Italian manufacturer OTO Melara surprised the international maritime community with its newly developed HITROLE Sea Cat 20mm naval weapon. Featuring a high capacity ammunition storage (750 20mm rounds), high operative flexibility, and autonomy for close-in protection against sea-based threats and air targets, the new weapon system is an “enabler of power” in high threat areas. OTO Melara told NAVAL FORCES in Le Bourget that the 20mm Gatling rotating machine gun can be used for “combating airborne and land-based targets”. On 28 October, OTO Melara signed a Memorandum of Understanding with SAKT in the United Arab Emirates to develop, co-produce, and promote the weapon system.

OTO Melara’s HITROLE Sea Cat 20mm is an ultra-modern, fully stabilised, electrically-operated, and remotely-controlled naval weapon system that can be fitted with a multi-barrel cannon capable of encountering the spectrum of asymmetric threats.
(Photo: Stefan Nitschke)

GRIFFIN C Demonstrates In-Flight Re-Targeting Capability

Raytheon’s new GRIFFIN C missile (formerly SeaGriffin) will counter swarming boat threats. The company successfully completed flight tests of its GRIFFIN C increased capability missile during a series of tests at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona. The missile highlighted its In-Flight Target Update (IFTU) capability when it was redirected to a new target in mid-flight. IFTU is vital for naval forces facing swarming boat threats that often intermingle with friendly and neutral shipping.
Also, Raytheon and L-3 Communications completed the second successful firing of the Rocket Remote Weapon Station (RRWS) outfitted with 70mm guided rockets. Missile compatibility includes the TALON, DAGR, APKWS, and HYDRA-70 rockets. According to L-3 Communications’ Integrated Optical Systems business unit, the laser-guided rocket scored direct hits. Multiple sensor options are on offer for detection, tracking, and targeting.


Raytheon has completed the development phase of the GRIFFIN C multi-platform, multi-service weapon linking the new dual-mode (imaging IR/semi-active laser) seeker, data-link, and In-Flight Target Update (IFTU). Pictured here is the life firing test of the Mk60 Griffin Missile System (GMS) from the “Cyclone” class fast patrol boat USS “Typhoon” (PC 5) in the Persian Gulf on 20 March 2014.
(Photos: US Navy)

IAI Adds Two New Maritime Surveillance Radars to its Heritage

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has expanded its best-selling Maritime Surveillance Radar family. The manufacturer presented models of two new additions to this family, the ELM-2022ES radar and the ELM-2022ML lightweight radar, in Le Bourget. The ELM-2022ES radar, developed by IAI’s subsidiary Elta Systems Ltd., provides optimal maritime and ground surveillance and imaging capabilities, in addition to simultaneous air surveillance. The system implements the proven operating modes and processing algorithms of the ELM-2022 family, while using the unique capabilities of AESA technology. Over 250 ELM-2022 radars have been sold to customers in over 25 countries worldwide, with the radar currently operated on many platforms: the P-3 ORION; Bombardier DASH-8; Airbus Military C-295 and C-235; Dornier 228 Maritime Patrol Aircraft; maritime helicopters; and IAI's HERON 1 maritime UAS. The ELM-2022ML radar uses a unique front-end design in which most of the radar components are installed directly on the mechanical antenna array. Weighing only 50kg, this radar is suitable for the growing market of small to medium UAV/UAS, as well as light reconnaissance aircraft and helicopters. All modes and capabilities of the existing radar are retained. This radar is especially suitable for maritime law enforcement and HomeLand Security (HLS) missions. Nissim Hadas, IAI’s Executive Vice President and Elta’s President, noted that the company is monitoring developing market requirements for performance and size, and continues to add new versions and modes of operation to extend the capabilities of its radars.


The ELM-2022ES can be installed on various mission aircraft (e.g. IAI’s Q-400 MPA; pictured), and be operated for a variety of military and maritime law-enforcement missions, such as Maritime Surveillance and ASW, EEZ surveillance, ISR, HomeLand Security (HLS), and search and rescue (SAR) missions. It is the subject of growing interest by leading customers worldwide.
(Photos: Israel Aerospace Industries)

NCMI Maximises Cost Effectiveness of Naval Training

IAI’s MLM Division developed NCMI, a distributed, full-scale, ready-to-run naval embedded naval training and simulation system that utilises high-fidelity simulation of virtual seaborne and airborne platforms. NCMI (Naval Combat Manoeuvring Instrumentation) provides a solution for sailors which need frequent exposure to dynamic environments containing multiple surface, airborne, and subsurface assets that may be friendly, hostile, neutral or unknown, complex rules of engagement and state-of-the-art equipment. According to IAI, interfaces with various combat systems allow for realistic scenarios, including C4I, EW, radar, sonar, and weapon systems. Also, there are interfaces with other training systems to ensure complete warfare simulation, by interfacing with other On-Board Training Systems (OBTS); Air Combat Manoeuvring Instrumentation (ACMI) systems; or Naval Tactical Trainers (NTT). According to Uri Shenfeld, IAI’s Business Development Manager, Training & Simulation, NCMI takes into account reduced manning levels on modern warships, meaning that individual crew members have multiple roles and tasks. Whilst a warship remains in its operational area, crew exchanges require a number of additional crews on land that must have follow-on training and practical preparation before deployment aboard. As a consequence, additional training slots are required. Training capabilities must therefore be fully independent of the ship and other training hardware. More complex knowledge must be absorbed than on current ships, for which NCMI draws on the latest high-fidelity weapon simulation models and kill assessment algorithms. “The simulation itself is Knowledge Base-driven”, said Uri Shenfeld. The coherent exercise situation is distributed via dedicated multi-layer simulation data-link that distributes the tactical situation to all participants both at sea and ashore. “The present solution for training and both ashore and at sea was developed in cooperation with Elbit Systems”, Uri Shenfeld told NAVAL FORCES in Le Bourget. It enables a wide range of capabilities: control over the environment; introduction of new virtual forces; tactical picture; compilation analysis; 3D mission rehearsal; and debriefing. The latter can be on a PC-based ground station and aboard a naval platform. According to Uri Shenfeld, NCMI also addresses asymmetric threat scenarios that are becoming to dominate the scene.

NCMI (Naval Combat Manoeuvring Instrumentation) provides a proper response to naval terrorism scenarios that are often described as situations similar to civil war and without the existence of well-defined frontline parties.
(Photo: Israel Aerospace Industries)

CNIM Expands Landing Craft Portfolio

CNIM Systèmes Industriels presented the concept of the MPC coastal patrol and landing vessel. It is a 40m long catamaran with a loading area of 130m2, including two 11m RHIB. For roll-on/roll-off logistical support, the craft has a truck/car lane of 2x18.5m. The propulsion system consists of four diesel engines delivering 950-1,081kW each. Each hull is equipped with one pump-jet unit. The MPC’s operating speed is quoted at 19-21 knots.

Hull and superstructure of the MPC multipurpose patrol craft are made of aluminium.
(Photo: CNIM Systèmes Industriels)

New Integrated, Non-Lethal System Protects Seafarers and Ships

At a press briefing in Le Bourget, SAFRAN-owned SAGEM presented AUTOPROTECTION, which, as an integrated, non-lethal anti-piracy system, controls all sensors and effectors from a single, intuitive and portable user interface. Designed by AUTOPROTECTION, an industrial consortium consisting of Amefo, Bureau Veritas, Eca Robotics, ENSM, Lacroix, SAGEM, Sofresud, SeaOwl, and THALES, the new solution enables automatic threat detection (by using radar processing techniques and accurate identification by EO/IR sensors); warning and deterrent responses (by utilising search lights and sound cannons); anti-boarding actions (by employing remote-controlled water cannons and smoke generators); and vessel and crew protection. The latter draws on a full set of sensors, effectors, and resources for protecting both the vessel and the crew. Key features of the latter include ballistic and anti-RPG (Rocket-Propelled Grenade) protection for the vessel‘s vulnerable areas plus a range of devices to hinder incoming assailants, according to SAGEM.

MTU Completes Marine Genset Portfolio...

Rolls-Royce’s MTU brand presented the 6R1600 M20 six-cylinder engine that has been especially developed for on-board power generation. Delivering 269kW at 1,500rpm (50Hz) and 232kW at 1,800rpm (60Hz), the engine sets new standards in terms of low total running costs and eco-friendliness. CommonRail fuel injection and the electronic engine control system help to keep fuel consumption under 200g/kWh, with very low exhaust emissions. According to Rolls-Royce Power Systems AG, major overhauls are initially required only after 15,000 hours, while injector service life is 7,500 hours. Knut Müller, MTU Friedrichshafen’s Vice President, Propulsion & Power Generation, and Head of Governmental Business, told NAVAL FORCES that two 6R1600 M20 marine engines were selected for two mine countermeasures vessels built under the auspices of the KORMORAN programme of the Polish Navy.

The MTU 6R166 M20 six-cylinder marine engine meets IMO Tier II and EPA Tier III emission standards.
(Photo: Stefan Nitschke)

...Automation Gets More Important in the Future

Automation will be the technology driver in the future. In a briefing on 28 October, Oliver Haller, Senior Manager Automation at MTU Friedrichshafen GmbH, gave an overview of the CALLOSUM automation system, one of the world’s most advanced monitoring and control systems for naval ships, including corvettes and frigates. “It is a tailor-made solution; some “300 CALLOSUM ship automation systems have been sold since [the system] has been introduced at EURONAVAL [in 2008]”, he said. CALLOSUM is composed of four modules: the basic CALLOSUM MC monitoring and control systems; CALLOSUM DC (identifying and controlling the damage incurred by collisions or weapon impacts); CALLOSUM TS (simulating a variety of scenarios to prepare naval personnel, with crews trained either on-board the ship or at a land-based training facility); and CALLOSUM MT (the maintenance support system designed for long-term assignments at sea). The latter has been selected for the German Navy’s Type F125 frigates. CALLOSUM MC, which is at the core of the capabilities, controls the propulsion plant, from fixed propellers to complex drive systems. CALLOSUM takes into account that automation is extending to all areas of warship operation, monitoring, and maintenance, gaining leverage from developments in commercial shipping.

CALLOSUM DC identifies and controls the damage incurred by collisions or weapon impacts.
(Photo: Stefan Nitschke)










IDEX-NAVDEX 2015

More Than Just a Port of Call



From 22-26 February 2015, the International Defence Exhibition and Conference (IDEX) will feature the third edition of the NAVDEX Naval Defence & Maritime Security Exhibition at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC) in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, along with the first edition of UMEX, an unmanned systems technology event designed to promote and showcase the modern era of defence. NAVDEX quickly became the largest naval defence exhibition in the region. It is a unique platform to establish and strengthen relationships with government departments, businesses, and maritime forces.
IDEX participated in the EURONAVAL 2014 exhibition this October. In Le Bourget, NAVDEX, as a key pillar of IDEX 2015, held high-level meetings with industry experts and major maritime defence sector companies in order to facilitate a mutually beneficial dialogue surrounding the latest industry trends and technological advancements.


The partnership agreed between IDEX LLC and TDC Takamul on 8 September 2014 will help continue to uncover and support world-class new ideas in science and technology pioneered from around the United Arab Emirates, bridging the gap toward a knowledge-driven economy; according to H. E. Ahmed Saeed Al Calily, Director General of TDC.
(Photo: TDC Takamul)

IDEX Chief Executive Officer Saleh Al Marzooqi noted in Le Bourget: “Our attendance at EURONAVAL is representative of the type of relationship we strive to foster with other industry counterparts. In line with IDEX and NAVDEX 2015 strategies and objectives, we work to bring the global defence industry the best possible platform to showcase ongoing initiatives and future ambitions in defence from around the globe.” He added: “Participating at an established event like EURONAVAL and conducting conversations about naval defence helps both add to the value of discourse at EURONAVAL, while setting the stage for continued conversation and collaboration in February at NAVDEX 2015.”
NAVDEX 2015 provides unparalleled access to the innovative and cutting edge technology that is defining the modern naval defence industry. “The exhibition provides exhibitors the opportunity to showcase the growing capabilities of the naval defence and maritime security industry”, according to the organiser of the event, IDEX LLC (an ADNEC Group company).
On 8 September 2014, IDEX LLC has entered a partnership agreement with The Abu Dhabi Technology Development Committee’s (TDC) Takamul innovation support programme for the upcoming event. The new partnership between IDEX and TDC complements their continuous efforts to support and evolve innovation, raise awareness specific to intellectual property, and provide business with the correct advice and opportunity to patent their innovations. IDEX CEO Saleh Al Marzooqi said: “This partnership with TDC is a testament to our shared commitment to both protecting and commercialising innovative ideas offered by businesses at IDEX 2015.” The partnership will see Takamul provide their expertise and support to the Emirates Innovations Campaign at IDEX 2015.
IDEX takes place biennially under the patronage of HH Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, and is organised in association with the United Arab Emirates Armed Forces GHQ. In 2013, IDEX and NAVDEX attracted 1,112 exhibiting companies and over 80,000 visitors.

Germany’s Defence Procurement under Attack


Errors in Defence Management Must be Resolved Quickly
The dismissal of the former Secretary of State in the German Ministry of Defence, Stéphane Beemelmans, as well as the director of the Procurement Department on 20 February 2014 highlights the inherent problems the German Bundeswehr has with realising major defence procurement projects. The process also shows how mismanagement of projects and a lack of transparency lead to a sudden decline in Germany’s reputation and reliability during recent multinational military missions. This situation is not new. Problems with major defence procurement projects in Germany have been known for many years.
Defence Minister Dr. Ursula von der Leyen, successor of Dr. Thomas de Maizière, who had worked since 2011 on developing and implementing one of the biggest reforms to the Bundeswehr and the Ministry of Defence in recent years, received the long awaited report into the state of the German MoD procurement processes on 6 October 2014. The report was commissioned in June 2014 and finalised by a consortium consisting of the independent auditors KPMG, P3 Group, and TaylorWessing.
The report provides a comprehensive inventory and risk analysis of main procurement projects. Nine major ongoing or planned procurement programmes with a total worth of over €50Bn were assessed: PUMA armoured infantry fighting vehicle (AIFV); A400M transport aircraft; Eurofighter multirole fighter; NH90 medium-size helicopter; TIGER combat support helicopter, Type F125 frigate, MEADS medium-range air and missile defence system (also known as TLVS (Taktisches Luftverteidigungssystem); EuroHawk long-range SIGINT system (in German parlance also known as Signalverarbeitende Luftgestützte Weitreichende Überwachung und Aufklärung; abbreviated SLWÜA); Interconnectable Joint-Services Radio Equipment project (known as SVFuA; Streitkräftegemeinsame Verbundfähige Funkgeräte-Ausstattung). The report delineated 140 problems and risks. They have been found to be responsible for serious delivery delays. A striking example is the A400M programme that resulted in a five-year delivery delay, forcing the German Air Force to embark on the fleet of legacy and decrepit C-160 transport aircraft. Some other projects – namely MEADS – did not result in the Bundeswehr taking delivery of ready-to-use systems. Some programmes, however, fell victim to problems associated with the certification process, or because international partners like the US (in the MEADS programme) withdrew from the project. The report states that most of the problems and risks are typical of an arms-purchasing bureaucracy, overworked officials, imprecise contracts, and confused responsibilities. It came to the conclusion that the MoD should review all of the programmes’ contracts to adjust their logistical and maintenance terms to fit the current state of each project. Additionally, the auditors recommend a critical re-evaluation of the EuroHawk programme.
The report comes after a series of embarrassing technical failures with vehicles, aircraft, and ships that have been caused by delays in introducing new equipment and spare parts. For instance, Germany’s first shipment of arms to Iraq’s Kurds in Erbil to help in the fight against the self-designated Islamic State (IS), was delayed when the designated transport aircraft broke down. Also because of shortages of spare parts, only 24 out of the inventory of 43 TRANSALL transport aircraft were declared as operational during the last week of September. The same problems have been identified with the 43 shipboard helicopters in German Navy inventories, of which only four SEA KING Mk41 aircraft were found to be operational on 18 September 2014. At that time, the German Navy was not able to support the EU mission around the Horn of Africa, involving the German Navy frigate “Lübeck” (F 214), by two promised SEA LYNX Mk88 shipboard helicopters. “This failure means a significant incapacitating for the task force and mission accomplishment”, according to the Ministry of Defence in a report to Secretary of State Dr. Katrin Suder on 18 September 2014.

The ability to reform defence procurement procedures will be viewed as a key political test for Defence Minister Dr. Ursula von der Leyen pictured here with Member of Parliament Ingo Gädechens.
(Photo: Courtesy of German Parliament)


The Value in Believing
According to Member of Parliament Ingo Gädechens of the Christian Democratic Union of Germany (CDU), the attacks of the opposition to Minister von der Leyen is baseless: “The responsibility for errors is the result of mistakes and bad planning, which in part has been building up for decades. [The] policy, Ministry, and industry are now required to correct the issues in the defence management quickly.”
Gädechens said the in-depth inventory and risk analysis provided to the Defence Committee “represents a…foundation to correct serious errors in the defence management quickly.” According to him, Minister von der Leyen has done well to clearly analyse the problems in order to remedy the structural weaknesses in the Defence Ministry and subordinate authorities. “It is clear, in order to meet our security policy responsibility and to equip our soldiers with the best [available] material, defence products must be on budget and on time”, he said. The results of the report highlight the problem of the defence management: A systematic risk management in the Ministry and subordinate authorities (BAAINBw; Bundesamt für Ausrüstung, Informationstechnik und Nutzung der Bundeswehr) is not or only insufficiently available. “Risks are either ignored, or the information about it seep in the reporting chain up to the management level. There is a lack of clear roles and responsibilities, as well as an honest reporting.
Furthermore, there are still too many technical mistakes in contract management”, noted Gädechens. “There is still a great need for improvement.”
Money is always a factor. As heard at the ‘Celler Trialog 2014’ in Celle, Germany, on 17 September 2014, Germany’s defence budget, which is currently at 1.3% of its GDP (Gross Domestic Product), has to be increased to the agreed NATO’s 2% target. This figure is fulfilled only by Estonia, Greece, the UK, and the US. The twist to the story is that, in 2013, nearly €1.3Bn of the approximately €4Bn equipment budget went unspent. A figure of roughly €400M has been quoted for 2014. Secretary of State Dr. Suder warned that “we need a defence industry 4.0”. “In conjunction with the report [commissioned by the MoD], key technologies have to be defined and answers to be given for two important questions: What is working well? What does not work?

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The Chilean Navy

Naval Defence Without Depth
Some countries have an unfavourable territorial situation that does not help establish a line of defence and, instead, requires a comparably higher amount of resources and assets. The very same concept applies for peacetime activities, namely presence, security patrol, and sovereignty. This commentary looks at the Chilean Navy that falls under this category.

The control of Chile’s territorial waters and EEZ has been significantly improved by two 1,800 tons OPV of the “Piloto Pardo” class.
(Photo: Chilean Navy)

Chile’s Territory is Long
In naval warfare, the term ‘depth’ is usually associated with ASW; instead, in land warfare, the same expression indicates the choice of a military strategy trying to delay, rather than stop an attacker, or, in other words, the willingness to spread the deployment of its own forces over a larger territory or a longer time.
Chile has a very long coastline, spreading from tropical waters down to Antarctica. On land, this territory is just a ‘thin layer’ between the Andes and the Pacific Ocean, mostly as thin as some 200km, or even less. In order to control the wide area of interest, called Mar Presencial, Chile developed a capable naval fleet, one of the most important and most proficient on the Latin American continent. The Mar Presencial is a unique concept, sometimes referred to as oceano-political (rather than geopolitical), much larger than the 200nm EEZ, where Chile does not claim sovereignty, yet declares an area of interest. Chile’s maritime territory cover some 17 million square kilometres, over 20 times its entire land surface.


Powerful Surface Assets Come of Age
The current Chilean fleet was created and commissioned following a three-stage approach. Submarines were procured abroad, exploiting new and effective designs: two Type 209/1400 boats in the mid-1980s, then greatly modernised in Chilean shipyards with a new SUBTICS combat system, EXOCET SM-39 anti-ship missiles, and new torpedoes; followed by two SCORPENE submarines.
All major surface combatants were procured second-hand. In this way, the Chilean Navy acquired some modern and capable vessels at a bargain price. The result is the deployment of a combat capability without comparison in the area. Under the revised TRIDENTE Plan, the fleet acquired and upgraded a total of eight modern frigates expected with a long lasting life: two “Almirante Blanco Encalada” class (ex-Dutch “M” class) frigates; two “Almirante Latorre” class (ex-Dutch “Jacob van Heemskerck” or “L” class) air defence frigates; one “Almirante Williams” class (ex-HMS “Sheffield” Type 22 Batch 2 type) frigate; and three “Almirante Cochrane” class (ex-UK Royal Navy Type 23) frigates. The latter were recommissioned, following a major overhaul, in the 2006-2008 timeframe. They are now to be fitted with the THALES 2087 Low Frequency Active Sonar (LFAS).
The two “Almirante Latorre” class air defence frigates were received in 2006. The 3,750 tons (full displacement) ships could be upgraded and armed with long-range SM-2 air defence missiles in due time. Her principal air defence weapon system is the SM-1MR effector. Accompanied are eight NATO SEA SPARROW air defence missiles and THALES Nederland’s GOALKEEPER 30mm CIWS. The single Type 22 Batch 2 frigate “Almirante Williams” (19), received in 2003, has been upgraded with the indigenously designed SISDEF SP21K CMS; her armament consists of eight HARPOON anti-ship missiles, one OTO Melara 76mm naval gun, and four Israeli BARAK vertical launch air defence missiles, replacing SEA WOLF missiles. The ship also received a new EW system and a hangar and flight deck for operating two COUGAR helicopters.
The Chilean Navy’s amphibious capability has been significantly enhanced following the receipt, in December 2011, of the landing ship LDHS  “Sargento Aldea” (91), a former French Navy “Foudre” class LSD.

Accelerated Acquisition
Chile is also expanding its national shipbuilding capability, mostly thanks to the experience principally gathered following the procurement of three “Piloto Pardo” class patrol vessels designed by Germany’s Fr. Fassmer. Selected for the Regional Patrol Vessel Initiative, the vessels were built within time and budget. After delivery of the first three units, an additional two are expected to be procured. These OPV are destined to perform in a wide range of missions, including Coast Guard duties; protection of fishing activities; search and rescue (SAR); salvage and pollution control; and support and training. Another class of six offshore patrol craft (“Contramaestre Micalvi” class) have been constructed by the Astilleros y Maestranzas de la Armada (ASMAR) in Talcahuano.
By Massimo Annati



Euronaval Press Event Disclosed New Realities

Emphasis on French Technology
France owns the second largest maritime territory worldwide, and as a result, it has “the need for a complete Navy”, said Rear Admiral Hervé Bléjean, Head of International Relations of the French Navy. Speaking with international defence correspondents during the pre-EURONAVAL press conference in Paris on 30 September 2014, the Admiral explained that the French Navy has three core tasks: providing deterrence; conducting expeditionary operations; and maintaining good order at sea. Due to the ongoing modernisation of the fleet, France’s naval industry has a healthy order book: four “Suffren” class (BARRACUDA) nuclear-powered attack submarines; six FREMM multimission frigates; three new 65m long, 2,300 tons multimission vessels (Bâtiments Multi-Missions; abbreviated B2M); light patrol vessels (Patrouilleurs Légers Guyanais; PLG); and support vessels (Bâtiments de Soutien et d’Assistance Hauturiers; BSAH). Eight units of the latter are expected to replace a wide range of aging auxiliary vessels currently in service with the Marine Nationale. Also, the requirement for a new double hulled fleet replenishment tanker/support vessel (Bâtiment Ravitailleur d’Escadre; BRAVE) is being finalised.

The second FREMM frigate, “Normandie” (D 651), pictured in the dry dock at DCNS shipyard in Lorient in October 2014. She underwent a series of sea trials during the summer. (Photo: Pieter Bastiaans)

Other equipment on order include NH90 CAÏMAN Marine helicopters and F21 ARTEMIS heavyweight torpedoes. Additionally, the Navy’s single aircraft carrier “Charles de Gaulle” (R 91) is destined to undergo a service life extension programme, starting in 2015. Procurement of a second aircraft carrier is being ruled out due to a lack of funding.
Two Anglo-French procurement projects are underway: the new comprehensive mine countermeasures (MCM) system (Système de Lutte Anti Mines Futur; SLAMF) and the Anti-Navire Léger (ANL) Future Anti-Surface Guided Weapon (Heavy) or FASGW(H). The latter, a medium-range naval strike missile replacing the French AS15TT and Royal Navy SEA SKUA systems, is also known as SEA VENOM in the UK.
As part of the SLAMF programme, the ESPADON (Évaluation de Solutions Potentielles d’Automatisation de Déminage pour les Opérations Navales) subsystem is currently being developed by an industrial consortium consisting of DCNS, THALES, and ECA Robotics. It is a demonstrator consisting of an optionally manned surface vessel acting as a mothership for autonomous underwater vehicles like ECA Robotics’ ALISTER 18 twin-body AUV or the same company’s K-STER mine disposal vehicle. A follow-on to the current “Tripartite” class of MCM ships, SLAMF will likely be launched by the European OCCAR in 2016 or 2017.
Concurrently, the French MoD has allocated research & development (R&D) funds to the Topside programme that is destined to provide a combined EW, radar, and communications capability, using integrated multifunction arrays for all RF functions. Money is also being spent on new fast raiding craft for France’s naval special operations forces (Embarcation Commandos à Usage Multiple Embarquable Nouvelle Génération; ECUME NG).
According to Zodiac Milpro, the Defence Ministry has confirmed its acceptance of the first advanced ECUME RIB and has placed an order for nine craft. The purchase is the first part of an investment option that will ultimately result in the delivery of another 10 of the advanced new craft by the French RIB manufacturer.

The second “Aquitaine” class frigate “Normandie” (D 651) is the first FREMM unit to get Nexter’s NARWHAL 20B 20mm remote controlled weapon station. (Photo: Pieter Bastiaans)

The Marine Nationale received all three “Mistral” class LHD ships, named Bâtiments de Projection et de Commandement (BPC) in French Navy parlance, and no additional units are being envisaged. The deal with Russia for two “Mistral” class ships remains in limbo though. The French Navy still operates a fourth amphibious landing ship, the older “Foudre” class “Siroco” (L 9012); however, Admiral Bléjean explained that she will be decommissioned in 2015 and put up for sale. New catamaran-type fast landing craft (Engins de Débarquement Amphibie Rapide; EDA-R) have also been introduced to enable over-the-horizon amphibious operations from the Navy’s LHD ships.
The procurement of the HORIZON air defence destroyers fitted with the Principal Anti-Air Missile System (PAAMS) and EMPAR multifunction radar – also dubbed PAAMS (E) – ended after the delivery of a mere two ships; so, the new FREMM frigates will form “the backbone of the French Navy”, according to Admiral Bléjean. On loan from DCNS, the patrol vessel “L’Adroit” (hull number P 725) is being used by the Navy under the auspices of Project HERMES as a precursor to the BATSIMAR (Bâtiment de Surveillance et d’Intervention Maritime) requirement for a series of OPV.
Speaking about the future prospects of the FREMM programme, Admiral Bléjean said: “We need at least two anti-air warfare ships.” These are the so-called FREDA (Frégate Défense Aérienne) frigates that have been envisaged to replace the two aging “Cassard” class air defence destroyers. Just like the two “Forbin” class (HORIZON) ships, they also will be fitted with PAAMS (E). This air defence system is capable of contributing to NATO’s Active Layered Theatre Ballistic Missile Defence (ALTBMD) programme, with its MBDA ASTER 30 missiles being launched from the ships’ SYLVER A50 vertical launch systems (VLS).
The spearhead of French naval innovation is formed by DCNS. Designing and building submarines and surface combatants as well as associated equipment and infrastructure for France and numerous export customers, this company is also increasingly involved with providing in-service support and naval MRO services to the Marine Nationale. DCNS’ current product portfolio includes the DCNS Evolved Aircraft Carrier (DEAC), which, depending on its propulsion system, has a displacement of 52,000 tons (COGAG) or 55,000 tons (CODLAG). When addressing international customers, the DEAC package can be accompanied by the transfer of certain items of technology. It is a heavily automated carrier design featuring an updated SETIS (Ship Enhanced Tactical Information System) CMS and the capability to accommodate up to 40 aircraft and a crew of 900.
DCNS now offers two variants of its Mistral family of amphibious warfare ships: the Mistral 200 LHD and the smaller Mistral 170 LPD (formerly known as Mistral 140). The high-end Mistral 200 was developed in cooperation with STX France, and has a displacement of 22,000 tons. DCNS also promotes its CTM NG (Chaland de Transport de Matériel de Nouvelle Génération) small landing craft that can be used from the Mistral series of ships. Providing multipurpose support, the 30,000 tons BRAVE 200 fleet replenishment tanker/support ship design features a POLARIS CMS, and is offered for the French Navy’s new AOR requirement.

Capable of hosting 25 crewmembers, instructors, and trainees, the first MST 400 vessel, “Almak”, provides practical training at sea for students from foreign countries. (Photo: Pieter Bastiaans)

Depending on the specific requirements with regard to system performance and displacement by potential customers, DCNS markets various types of multipurpose OPV, corvettes, and frigates. At the high end, ordered by the Navies of France and Morocco, the company’s SETIS-equipped FREMM frigate has a displacement of 6,000 tons, a length of 142m, and is manned by a crew of 108. Designed for AAW, ASW, ASuW, and land attack, the highly modular Franco-Italian FREMM design features a stealth architecture that includes low radar cross section (RCS) characteristics and a reduced IR signature. It also features optimised means for passive detection including ESM and panoramic IRST, of which the latter augments THALES’ HERAKLES multifunction radar, while relying on tactical data-links to help build-up a Common Operational Picture (COP). Silent operation is enabled by the ship’s CODLOG (Combined Diesel Electric or Gas) propulsion system. While the generic FREMM design is capable of accommodating various VLS, the French ASW-configured “Aquitaine” class is fitted with two eight-cell SYLVER A43 VLS carrying MBDA ASTER 15 effectors as part of the ship’s SAAM-FR air defence system. Also installed are two eight-cell SYLVER A70 VLS that will accommodate MBDA’ MdCN naval cruise missile. Armament also includes MBDA’s 200km (108nm) range EXOCET MM40 Block 3 anti-ship missile system, OTO Melara’s 76/62 Super Rapid Gun, Nexter’s NARWHAL 20B 20mm remote controlled weapon stations, and EuroTorp MU90 lightweight torpedoes. The ship’s sonar equipment consists of THALES Underwater Systems’ 4110 CL hull-mounted sonar and the same company’s CAPTAS 4 (UMS 4249) combined active and passive Variable Depth Sonar (VDS). The third FREMM frigate, “Provence” (D 652), conducted her first at-sea testing while the fourth unit, “Languedoc” (D 655), was floated out in mid-July.
DCNS’ SETIS-equipped GOWIND 2500 corvette, with a length of 103m, has been ordered by Malaysia and Egypt. Manned by a lean crew of 65, the multirole combatant has a displacement of 2,700 tons, whereas the 80m GOWIND 1000 design displaces 1,500 tons, accommodating a crew of 56. The latter is well-suited for EEZ patrols although the vessel’s capabilities can be further enhanced by adding mission modules, including ASW.
DCNS’ FX4 programme should result in a new frigate design aimed at fulfilling the Frégates de Taille Intermédiaire (FTI) requirement. FTI will eventually replace the current five “La Fayette” class light frigates.
The Kership joint venture between DCNS (45%) and Piriou (55%) has led to a series of multipurpose OPV designs that are optimised for less-demanding maritime security operations. The OPV range includes the OPV 50, 75, and 90 designs, while the new B2M (Bâtiments Multi-Missions) multimission vessel forms part of the multipurpose range together with the MPV 80. Manned by a crew of 30, the POLARIS-equipped OPV 90 has a length of 87m, displacing 1,000 tons.
Construction of three B2M units has commenced at Piriou’s shipyard in Concarneau. All units will be delivered to the French Navy in 2015 and 2016, while the contract also includes in-service support during a six-year period. Armed with two .50-calibre (12.7mm) heavy machine guns and two water cannons, the 65m B2M has a wide stern deck that can accommodate up to six 20-ft containers. Manned by up to 40 personnel, the B2M can also carry two 7m RHIB.
Piriou also offers a separate range of fast coastal patrol vessels, the CPV 82 (25m) and CPV 105 (32,5m), as well as the MST 44 (Bâtiment de Formation Maritime; BFM 44) maritime training ship and the LCT 50 landing craft; the latter two designs through the Kership partnership. One MST 44 vessel (named “Almak”) is operated under a performance-based contract for the French military by the navOcéan alliance since late 2013. This joint venture comprises the service provider company Defense Conseil International or DCI (70%) and Piriou (30%). With the French Navy lacking an adequate organic training capacity, it is not unlikely that more of these MST 44 ships might be needed in the near future to enlarge the navOcéan programme. Sources quote a total of 10 units.
In addition, Piriou has considerable expertise in providing in-service support as it has supported more than 120 French Navy vessels since 2004, including more than 100 launches from the Brest Naval Base, as well as sail training ships, hydrographic vessels, ocean-going tugs, and more. The Brittany-based company has also been involved in refitting French Navy training ships, including a full re-engining of eight vessels.
In November 2013, Piriou conducted an unorthodox move as it acquired the P400 type patrol vessel “La Tapageuse” (P 691), the last of the “L’Audacieuse” class patrol vessels, from the French Navy without any client identified beforehand. Once the ship had been refitted, it was to be offered as a short-term, cost-effective solution for operators that are looking for an operational vessel of this sort. However, as heard at the EURONAVAL 2014 exhibition in Le Bourget, Piriou’s approach has already paid off as it has managed to sell the vessel to the Gabonese Navy. Also included in the deal is the delivery of an OPV 50 from the Kership range while DCI’s naval component will be involved in providing initial crew training. It is likely that Piriou is planning to do similar deals involving surplus P400 class patrol ships in the future.
Despite being very pleased with its nuclear-powered submarines, the French government sees a need to maintain the country’s know-how on conventionally-powered submarines. DCNS has now launched the new conventional SMX Ocean attack submarine that will augment its range of SCORPENE diesel-electric submarines (1000 and 2000 series). Equipped with VL tubes, the submerged platform carries a maximum of 34 weapons, offering a strike capability against land, sea, and air targets. The SMX Ocean will be able to deploy a torpedo tube-launched UAV as well as unmanned underwater vehicles that can be accommodated in a specially designed docking bay. Designed for ISR tasks, the discrete VIPERE buoy provides digitally stabilised imagery both a day and night. Operated from the submarine by using a 2km long optical fibre glass cable, VIPERE can be recovered by using a winch.
By Pieter Bastiaans
Europe Correspondent


Leveraging technology from the BARRACUDA SSN design, the newly designed concept of the SMX Ocean submarine features a surface displacement of 4,750 tons, a length of 100m, and an endurance of up to three months. (Photo: Courtesy of DCNS)