September's top stories: Egypt-France Mistral deal, US Navy’s $1.49bn P-8A order

Egypt agreed to buy two Mistral-class helicopter carriers from France for €950m ($1bn), the US Navy awarded a $1.49bn contract for P-8A Poseidon, and Saab began construction of the Swedish Navy's A26 next-generation submarine. Naval-technology.com wraps up key headlines from September 2015.


Top sep

Egypt to buy French helicopter carriers built for Russia

Egypt

Egypt agreed to purchase two Mistral-class helicopter carriers, which France had built for Russia, in a €950m ($1bn) deal.

Last month, France and Russia terminated a €1.2bn ($1.3bn) contract for these carriers over the Ukraine crisis.

According to a French defence ministry source, the deal also includes training for 400 Egyptian Navy personnel and delivery of the warships is expected to be in March next year.

US Navy awards $1.49bn contract to Boeing for P-8A Poseidon aircraft

The US Navy awarded a $1.49bn contract to Boeing for the delivery of 13 P-8A Poseidon aircraft to Australia and the navy.

Under this contract, the company will be responsible for providing nine aircraft for the US Navy and four Poseidon aircraft for the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

The new development marks the delivery of the first P-8A Poseidon to Australia and the construction of the US Navy's second lot of full-rate production aircraft.

Saab begins construction of Swedish Navy's first A26 submarine

Saab officially started the construction of Swedish Navy's A26 next-generation submarine, following a steel-cutting ceremony held at the Saab Kockums shipyard in Karlskrona, Sweden.

Claimed to be the world's most modern submarine programme, the new A26 will be capable of operating in all oceans and across a broad spectrum of conflict environments.

In addition to the load of mines and torpedoes, the new submarine will be equipped with missiles.

Finland to build modern vessels to strengthen naval fleet

The Finnish Defence Forces received a mandate from the Ministry of Defence to start the Flotilla 2020 project, in bid to strengthen the country's capabilities with modern vessels.

Currently, the country is planning to build four vessels with a capability to monitor maritime areas above and under the water surface, as well as in the air space.

Planned to be carried out within the financial framework granted through a separate decision, the Flotilla 2020 project is estimated to require a funding of €1.2bn.

UK to invest £500m in Royal Navy's HM Naval Base Clyde

HM Naval Base

The UK Chancellor George Osborne committed £500m of funding for the Royal Navy's flagship submarine base HM Naval Base Clyde at Faslane.

Due to begin in 2017, the new developments will take ten years to complete and are expected to secure 6,700 jobs and create thousands more.

The new investment will be spent on ship lifts, sea walls and jetties, as well as other major projects.

Lockheed introduces its new amphibious combat vehicle

Lockheed

Lockheed Martin introduced its new amphibious combat vehicle (ACV) 1.1 at the Modern Day Marine trade show in Quantico, Virginia, US.

The new armoured, eight-wheel-drive vehicle will be capable of carrying up to 13 Marines between land and water also offer high levels of blast protection.

Lockheed's ACV programme aims to allow the US Marine Corps to replace its aging fleet of Amphibious Assault Vehicles, which have been in service since the 1970s.


US Navy conducts first SeaRAM missile firing from its LCS

LCS

The US Navy successfully fired a tactical missile for the first time from a SeaRAM launcher on board its second Independence-class littoral combat ship (LCS), USS Coronado, during a live-fire exercise.

Conducted at the Naval Air Warfare Center Weapons Division sea range off the coast of California, the trial saw the navy's LCS firing a rolling airframe missile from a SeaRAM anti-ship defence system.

During the test, Raytheon's SeaRAM was able to detect, track and engage an inbound threat target, and fire a RAM Block 1A, intercepting the target successfully.

Orbital secures $260m contract for fourth and fifth AARGM full-rate production

Orbital ATK secured a contract worth up to $260m from the US Navy for the fourth and fifth full-rate production lots of the advanced anti-radiation guided missile (AARGM).

The latest contract covers all-up round missiles and captive air training missiles for the US Navy and the Italian Air Force as well as the second foreign military sales order for the Royal Australian Air Force.

An upgraded version of the AGM-88 HARM, the AARGM supersonic air-launched tactical missile system can perform destruction of enemy air defence missions, in addition to engaging conventional and superior defence land and sea-based air-defence threats and non-radar time-sensitive strike targets.

India and Australia conclude first Ausindex15 bilateral maritime exercise

India and Australia successfully completed the first bilateral maritime exercise, Ausindex15, at Visakhapatnam in India, which aimed to strengthen the defence co-operation between the countries.

The latest exercise was part of the framework for security cooperation announced by the Australian and Indian Prime Ministers in 2014.

Ausindex15 exercise saw the participation of three RAN ships, HMA Ships Sirius, Arunta and Sheehan, and a Royal Australian Air Force AP-3C aircraft.

It also involved the Indian Navy warships, including Shivalik, Ranvijayi and Shakti, as well as its P-8I maritime patrol aircraft.

BAE successfully completes first in-water trial of new Spearfish Torpedo

Spearfish

BAE Systems successfully completed the first in-water trial of the next-generation Spearfish heavyweight torpedo prototype at the UK Ministry of Defence's (MoD) British Underwater Test and Evaluation Centre, Scotland.

The trial was conducted as part of a five-year programme aimed to develop an upgrade to the Spearfish Mod-0 heavyweight torpedo.

With the upgrade, the next-generation Spearfish will feature enhanced data links between the weapon system and the launching vessel, offering better capability, as well as a reduction in through-life operating costs for the Royal Navy.