April’s top news stories

6 May 2019 (Last Updated May 9th, 2019 09:59)

The US Navy awarded a $3.2bn contract modification to Northrop Grumman to supply an additional 24 E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft, and the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) launched a competition to develop an autonomous version of an existing large underwater vehicle (UUV). Naval-Technology.com wraps up key headlines from April 2019.

April’s top news stories
The E-2D Advanced Hawkeye provides advanced early warning capability to the US Navy. Credit: US Navy.

US Navy awards $3.2bn contract to Northrop for extra E-2D aircraft

The US Navy awarded a $3.2bn multi-year procurement (MYP) contract modification to Northrop Grumman to supply an additional 24 E-2D Advanced Hawkeye aircraft.

The fixed-price-incentive-firm contract is for the full-rate production of the aircraft for fiscal years 2019-23.

According to Northrop, the contract includes an option to deliver nine more foreign military sales aircraft.


UK MoD invites proposals for development of autonomous UUV

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) launched a competition to develop an autonomous version of an existing large underwater vehicle (UUV).

The MoD is seeking proposals to develop a platform to address the Royal Navy’s need to understand the utility and operational boundaries of an autonomously operating unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) system.

According to the competition announcement from the Defence, Science and Technology Laboratory (Dstl), the MoD has: “An enduring requirement for an increased presence within the underwater battlespace and is looking to address the lack of current options in order to increase the number of delivery ready platforms.”


HII wins $727.4m mod contract for Virginia-class Block V submarines

Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) Newport News Shipbuilding division secured a contract modification worth $727.4m to continue procuring long-lead-time material for Virginia-class Block V submarines.

The latest award from General Dynamics Electric Boat is a modification to an existing contract for long-lead-time material to support the construction of the Virginia-class Block V submarines.

With the current contract, the overall contract value has increased to $1.04bn.


Leonardo to deliver four AW101 helicopters to Polish Navy

Italian defence company Leonardo reached a €380m deal to supply four AW101 helicopters to the Polish Navy, as well as a comprehensive integrated logistics and training package.

The company will execute the contract through its wholly owned Polish subsidiary PZL-Świdnik.

As the prime contractor, PZL-Świdnik will assume responsibility for the execution of the entire contract.


Indian Navy launches third Project 15B guided-missile destroyer

The Indian Navy launched the third Project 15B Visakhapatnam-class stealth guided-missile destroyer, the future INS Imphal.

The domestically designed vessel was unveiled by Indian Chief of the Naval Staff admiral Sunil Lanba during a launch ceremony at Mazagon Dock Shipbuilders Limited’s (MDL) facility in Mumbai.

MDL is under contract to build four warships under Project 15B for the Indian Navy.


US Navy tests technology to keep sailors out of minefields

Engineers at Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division (NSWC PCD) tested a drone designed to ensure the protection of navy personnel during mine hunting and clearing missions.

Known as the Airborne Surface Quad Thruster Interface Device (ASQUID), the device will eliminate the need for personnel to enter a minefield during mine hunting and clearing missions.

The NSWC PCD team performed a flight test using the device, which attaches to the side of an MH-60 helicopter.


Lockheed Martin chooses Saab’s Sea Giraffe AMB radars for Canada’s JSS

Lockheed Martin Canada awarded a contract to Saab to deliver Sea Giraffe AMB naval radars for the Royal Canadian Navy’s new Protecteur-class joint support ships (JSS).

Seaspan’s Vancouver Shipyards is the prime contractor for Canada’s JSS programme. The company selected Lockheed Martin Canada to provide the command management system and integration for the JSS.

The Sea Giraffe AMB radars to be supplied by Saab will be part of the command management system for the new ships.


Naval Group launches multi-mission FREMM frigate for French Navy

Naval Group launched the seventh multi-mission FREMM frigate for the French Navy from a specialist facility in Lorient.

Known as Alsace, the vessel is the first of the two air defence frigates under the FREMM programme for the French Navy and the ninth multi-missions FREMM frigate.

The vessel was ordered by the OCCAr on behalf of French procurement agency DGA and is equipped with antisubmarine warfare capability and offers increased capacities in terms of air defence using the Aster 15 and 30 missiles.

US Navy public shipyards to get $21bn modernisation boost

The US Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) started work on a $21bn project to modernise four public naval shipyards to support the combat readiness of the navy.


Russia unveils Belgorod nuclear-powered submarine at Sevmash shipyard

Russia launched a modern special-purpose nuclear-powered submarine called Belgorod that is designed to carry thermonuclear-armed robot torpedoes and underwater ‘Poseidon’ drones.

Belgorod is expected to be delivered to the Russian Navy by the end of 2020, news agency TASS reported.

The submarine was unveiled at the Sevmash Shipyard in Severodvinsk, northern Russia.