- The Air Force has taken delivery of the third and final KC-135 air tankers it purchased from U.S. stockpiles in 2009.
- The Army introduced a lightweight UAV. The Lascar has a two-hour endurance and maximum ceiling of 11,500 feet. It would be used primarily for observation purposes.
- Boeing is in early talks with the Army for the acquisition of AH-6i attack helicopters. A report says the Army could use the AH-6i to replace 17 MD530 helicopters that Chile has armed with rockets and guns. An earlier report noted that Bell is pitching its 407 light helicopter as the Army considers an attack helicopter with anti-tank capabilities.
- Fighter jet manufacturers are hoping the Air Force will launch a competition for a replacement for Chile's F-5 fighters, which are nearing retirement age. The deal could be for 12-15 planes, but the government has done nothing yet to seek a replacement.
- Brazil's Embraer announced orders for its Super Tucano turboprop trainer and attack airplane worth $180 million.
Saturday, March 31, 2012
The biannual Fidae air show is in full swing this weekend, with nearly 500 exhibitors and 75 aircraft on display. Here's a roundup of developments in this year's show.
Friday, March 30, 2012
made an emergency landing after part of its landing gear failed. The jet landed with two its three wheels, sustaining some damage. The plane was in a training mission when the accident occurred around 1 pm on Friday, March 30. The two pilots were unhurt. Judging from the plane's markings and its home base, it was a F-16B MLU. The plane was part of a batch acquired second hand from the Netherlands in 2005.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Three Puma SA-330L helicopters just back from a major refurbishment are being put up for sale. The Army has had a change of heart and instead of using the helicopters now wants to standardize its transport copter fleet with AS-532 Cougar helicopters, according to El Mostrador. The Army already has purchased eight Cougars. The $20 million upgrade included new digital communications and control systems, GPS navigation, LCD cockpit displays, night vision gear and defensive countermeasures. El Mostrador blames intermediaries for Eurocopter for a program that ultimately served no purpose and diverted funds from other Army programs. Still, funds fromthe sale of the helicopters could be used on new material, possibly a Super Puma helicopter.