Saab receives Carl-Gustaf order from US Army: Saab has received an order for Carl-Gustaf ammunition and AT4 systems from the US Army. The order value is approximately US$100 million and deliveries will take place in 2021. The order was placed within an indefinite delivery and quantity agreement signed in 2019, enabling the customer to place orders for Carl-Gustaf ammunition and AT4 systems during a five-year period to a value of up to US$445 million. The AT4 systems and the Carl-Gustaf munitions in this order will be operated by the US Army, Marine Corps, and Special Forces Command. Since 1987, Saab has delivered more than 600,000 AT4s, both directly and under license, to the US armed forces. The Carl-Gustaf system has been a programme of record in the US since 2013 and in 2018 the US Army announced it would acquire the latest version of the system – the Carl-Gustaf M4 (designated M3E1 in the US) with a reduced weight of less than 15 pounds (7 kilos).

Orbital UAV hosts minister for Defence: Orbital Corporation welcomed Australian Minister for Defence Linda Reynolds on a tour of its headquarters in Balcatta, Perth on 16 July. The visit of Senator Reynolds comes two weeks after the launch of the Australian Government’s 2020 Defence Strategic Update and 2020 Force Structure Plan outlining a new strategy for Defence and the capability investments to deliver it. The Force Structure Plan highlighted potential investment of up to A$700 million in tactical unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) over the next decade and up to A$1.3 billion in Maritime Un-crewed Aerial Systems between 2020 and 2040. The proposed investments outlined in the FSP represent key areas of Defence capability development, in response to rapid changes in the global strategic environment. According to the new plan, “Defence needs to ensure it is alert and adaptable to opportunities presented by new emerging technology.” This includes adoption of remotely piloted or autonomous systems such as tactical UAVs to carry out intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions, and support operations. With contracts with some of the world’s largest Defence Prime Contractors, including Boeing subsidiary Insitu, Textron Systems and Northrop Grumman, Orbital UAV has built a global reputation as a leader in the design and manufacturer of propulsion systems and flight critical components for tactical UAVs. The company is exporting products and associated technologies to US-based UAV customers and is targeting further growth through involvement in global Defence tactical UAV tenders, including the US Army’s Future Tactical Unmanned Aircraft System Program, and the Australian Defence Force’s LAND129 programme.

New milestone for F-35 maintenance in Australia: Australia’s defence industry reached a new milestone in the maintenance of the Royal Australian Air Force’s new F-35 fighter jets. The first Australian F‑35A engine fan module has undergone routine maintenance at local Queensland business TAE Aerospace, based at Bundamba in Ipswich. Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price said it highlighted the growing capability of Australian defence companies. “By maintaining and repairing the F-35 engines in Australia, we can get these planes back in the air quicker, while also creating skilled jobs for many Australians,” Minister Price said. “And in a world first, this type of engine work was the first to ever be completed outside of the United States, representing a significant new step for TAE Aerospace and the Australian defence industry.” This proves to be a year of milestones for the 100 percent Australian-owned TAE Aerospace, which in May celebrated its 20th year in the aerospace industry. TAE’s recent achievements are a testament to the importance of defence industry in contributing to our economy, and our footprint in the global F-35 programme.”

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