European Military News, Reports, Data, etc.


Re: European armed forces

100 million euros UNIT PRICE?! That's about as expensive as a Raptor.
Well, I assume that unit price refers to the whole system. Wich, as mentioned in the article, is comprised of 3 vehicles, 1 ground station and spares (=spare parts ...?). I think that's more reasonable.

Are they attempting to produce an air-to-air UCAV? [...] It sounds like some sort of ultra-long range/endurance full spectrum recon platform just based off the price (we know its sexy) and the numbers (single digits = not for combat or even tactical frontline use; this system will be operated at a strategic scale)
It's about a HALE UAV to be used in the recce role mainly, I think. A recce version for lower altitudes, wich may follow later on, is already incorporated in the modular design.
Pretty close to the Global/Euro Hawk, IMO. I was rather exspecting someting along the Barracuda / Neuron UCAV lines.
The german EuroHawks will get a SIGINT packages, AFAIK. Maybe these new one will also use SAR / EO sensors.

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Finn McCool

Registered Member
Re: European armed forces

Well, I assume that unit price refers to the whole system. Wich, as mentioned in the article, is comprised of 3 vehicles, 1 ground station and spares (=spare parts ...?). I think that's more reasonable.
Alright, I just skimmed the article, I didn't quite catch that it was an entire system. That does make more sense. Thanks for clearing that up and posting it in the first place.


Junior Member
Re: European armed forces

Bad news. I heard this week that Germany would split its Tranche 3 order... I will try to find a german article on this soon.


Re: European armed forces

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German Puma Order Is Biggest Ever, Firms Say

Published: 7 Jul 2009 00:00

Germany's government placed an order Monday for 405 Puma armored fighting vehicles from a joint venture of Rheinmetall and Krauss-Maffei Wegmann (KMW), according to a KMW statement.

The series production order is worth about 3.1 billion euros ($4.3 billion), and both of the German companies said it is the largest order they have ever received. The contractor is PSM GmbH, Kassel. KMW and Rheinmetall each hold a 50 percent stake in the joint venture.

The Puma, a tracked armored personnel carrier equipped with a 30mm cannon, is designed to resist land mines, rocket-propelled grenades and improvised explosive devices, and to be quickly airlifted to conflict zones. Deliveries to the German Army are scheduled to begin next year.


Re: European armed forces

Ok, at least Tranche 3 gets started now. Hopefully they'll complete it later on. And also upgrade older models to the latest standart.

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Eurofighter Partner Nations To Buy 112 Typhoons

By andrew chuter
Published: 31 Jul 2009 08:55

Eurofighter partner nations Britain, Germany, Italy and Spain have signed a 9 billion euro deal to purchase a 112 more Typhoon combat aircraft.

The contract covers just less than half of the original commitment to acquire 236 fighters under the Tranche 3 element of the pan European program.

The second part of the Tranche 3 order is planned to be signed later.

The deal has been split into two parts to help ease the pressure on defense budgets, principally in Britain, where a cash-strapped government dragged its feet for months before finally committing to a Tranche 3 contract only after a series of compromises by the other partners.

The Tranche 3A deal brings total production orders for Typhoon to 559, including the export of 15 for Austria and 72 for Saudi Arabia.

The first Saudi aircraft was handed over by BAE Systems last month.

As part of the arrangements to keep the British onboard the program the other partner nations have allowed the Saudi fighters to be counted as part of the U.K. order. ...

Jeff Head

Staff member
Super Moderator
European Airbus' A400M Transport has maiden flight

It flies! Airbus' A400M Transport has maiden flight
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SEVILLE, Spain — The A400M military transport plane that has been causing Airbus and European defense ministers budgetary and logistical headaches finally took to the skies for its maiden flight on Friday.

But even as the hulking gray airlifter took off from the Spanish city of Seville, defense officials are meeting on the sidelines of the event to decide how to continue with the much delayed and over budget project.

Louis Gallois, head of Airbus parent EADS, said he found the takeoff "more moving than I expected. It's enormous. We've been waiting a long time."

The 127 ton (140 short tons) plane took off 15 minutes late after a few glitches with the flight instruments, said Fernando Alonso, head of Flight Operations at Airbus. It headed southwest, over the Spanish region of Extremadura.

At a briefing an hour after lift-off, Alonso said that "everything is going fine" and the crew "feel very comfortable with the airplane."

The crew, dressed in orange jump suits, are equipped with parachutes and helmets just in case.

"It's only after they land that we will be able to party," Alonso said.

They have 184 orders so far, including 60 for Germany, 50 for France, 27 for Spain, 25 for England, etc.

There will be cargo transport, troop transport, Medical evacuation, aerial refuelling, and electronic surveillance versions.

Nice aircraft.


Re: European armed forces

It really finally flew, and now the problems start:

The problems have caused a considerable cost increase, Airbus wants that money from the customer.

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A400M remains in limbo

By Peter Felstead - 14 January 2010

The future of the Airbus Military A400M transport aircraft programme remains in limbo, with the top management at Airbus and parent company EADS admitting that no meetings have yet been scheduled with the programme's partner nations at which crucial price renegotiations could take place.


"We are spending between EUR100 million and EUR150 million [USD145 million and USD217 million] per month. We just cannot continue beyond the end of January without knowing where we are going financially," said Gallois. "Today, I am sending a message of urgency to the governments: we are ready to negotiate at any time. ... After 31 January a decision will have to be taken anyway. We will take our own decision. Our duty is to protect as much as possible the interests, capacity and sustainability of EADS and Airbus."


And now there seems to be a solution ahead for that as well., however, a stupid one as I think. The partner nations buying that plane might agree on just not demanding all the handling characteristics anymore the military sought, to keep the cost down. So, not more money, but less value.

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EADS calls A400M buyers' signals positive-report

FRANKFURT, Jan 17 (Reuters) - The chairman of Airbus parent EADS (EAD.PA) on Sunday welcomed signs by its partners in the Airbus A400M military plane project that they are ready to talk about additional costs which threaten the deal.

"That its a very positive sign," Louis Gallois said in an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung (FAS), confirming he had knowledge of a planned meeting.

"We are ready to work constructively towards a solution that is acceptable to all sides," he said.

The buyers of the 180 Airbus troop transporters, seven European governments, pledged this week to seek a joint deal with Airbus [ID:nLDE60E0WP].

EADS had complained it was been left out of crucial meetings and had set a Jan. 31 deadline for an agreement to avoid scrapping the plane.

"The A400M even at a higher price is cheaper, more modern and more flexible than the (U.S.) American competition," Gallois said in the FAS story.

The Handelsblatt business daily in pre-release abstracts of a story due to be published on Monday said that the meeting between governments and Airbus was likely to take place at the end of the week in Berlin, citing government sources.

The paper added that the governments are ready to offer a compromise under which they would be willing to forego some of the handling characteristics sought by the military -- a step which could significantly reduce the plane's production costs.

There was no comment immediately available from the German Defence Ministry, which has been negotiating on the project.

The A400M's future has been threatened by an 11 billion euro ($15.87 billion) or 55 percent blow-out in development and production costs, overshadowing a successful maiden flight carried out last month.

The planes had been due for delivery in 2009 but the maiden flight only took place last month and delivery is now set for 2012. [ID:nGEE5BA0E6]

Gallois said the planned development schedule had been too tight initially and no comparable plane had needed less than 12 years to come to fruition.

"...with about 10 years for the A400M, we will be ready in very good time," he said.

He said that 40,000 jobs depended on the plan, including 11,000 in Germany.

He also said a civilian plane, the long-haul A350, was planned to be delivered from 2013 onwards and while there were no delays at this stage, the schedule was ambitious.

(Reporting by Vera Eckert; Editing by Erica Billingham)


Re: European armed forces

Touching some of the biggest projects in the Luftwaffe.
Upgrading the C-160 will probably happen, since it's relevant to current operational needs, as is upgrading the Eurofighter for an extended CAS role.
However, with the current financial dilemma, and the MoD's need to save a billion Euros a year, plans like further Typhoon upgrades and MEADS as a whole are probably still in perill.

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Luftwaffe Eyes C-160, Eurofighter Upgrades

Jun 4, 2010 - By Robert Wall

LONDON — Delays in the A400M military transport and operational experiences in Afghanistan are starting to shape German air force modernization ambitions.

Because Germany’s Transall C-160s have more airframe life remaining than France’s, the delay of the A400M is placing less strain on the country’s existing transports, but that does not mean the service can stand still.

There is concern about the technical viability of the aircraft while the Luftwaffe waits for its first A400M. Therefore, “an enhancement of operational capabilities, for example the implementation of night vision goggles, is under investigation,” says the service’s chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Aarne Kreuzinger-Janik.

But dealing with the C-160 situation is only one of several priorities for the service. Upgrade plans for the Eurofighter also are being shaped by the country’s operational experience in Afghanistan. “Equipping Eurofighter for close air support is of special importance,” the Luftwaffe chief says. That includes development of a modified GBU-48 with a new bomb body with lower yield but increased penetration capability.

Furthermore, the service wants to assure that the laser-designating pod can provide full motion video and that aircraft can communicate with ground personnel via Rover or Rosetta terminals.

Adding an active electronically scanned radar and reconnaissance pod also remains a long-term ambition. Those would be pursued in concert with upgrades being made by other Eurofighter partner countries to cut costs.

Kreuzinger-Janik also wants to make sure the government sticks with its commitment to the Medium Extended Air Defense System (Meads) being developed in conjunction with Italy and the U.S. The commitment is currently under parliamentary review, with Raytheon officials urging the government to simply upgrade existing Patriot batteries and forego Meads. But the air force chief believes that would be a mistake.

“Patriot’s growth potential is, due to the system design and architecture, limited to the capabilities currently provided,” he argues, adding that Meads “has capabilities beyond existing systems such as radars with greater range providing a greater engagement and protection envelope, more sensitivity and an advanced [identification friend or foe] subsystem that guarantees better protection for allied aircraft.”

Credit: Airbus Military


Junior Member
Re: European armed forces

Did this Eurofighter Typhoon crash after an engine failure?! Some report this problem, at a very sensible take-off phase around 200-300 km/h.