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Germany, Norway join aerial tanker project
by Richard Tomkins
Washington (UPI) Sep 27, 2017

Australian firm to assemble GE engines
Washington (UPI) Sep 27, 2017 - GE's Marine Solutions' LM2500 gas turbine modules are to be manufactured in Australia by RJE Global in support of a Royal Australian Navy frigate program.

Under a recent Memorandum of Understanding by the two companies, RJE Global will also manufacture a number of components for the gas turbines.

"Through this MOU, GE provides RJE access to manufacturing and assembly knowledge as well as other GE resources that have been used with similar local manufacturers globally to produce our reliable LM2500 marine gas turbine modules," said Brien Bolsinger, vice president and general manager of GE in Evendale, Ohio. "Teaming with RJE is a natural choice that makes the LM2500 engine the low risk, in-country solution for the RAN's next-generation frigate program."

RJE, which designs and builds plant and power solutions for industry, has a history of working with several GE businesses. It is located in the State of South Australia.

The LM2500 gas turbines will be for the RAN's nine-ship SEA 5000 Future Frigate Program. The new frigates will replace the navy's aging Anzac-class frigates.

GE's LM2500 gas turbines are operational on two of the short-listed, qualified ship designs for the new vessels -- Fincantieri's FREMM and Navantia's F100 frigates.

Germany and Norway have joined the European Defense Agency's Multinational Multi-Role Tanker Transport Fleet project.

The joining of the two, with Luxembourg and the Netherlands in the project, was accompanied by an order for five Airbus A330 MMT aircraft, bringing the number of aircraft ordered by members to seven, and leaving the potential for it to increase to 11.

EDA said the order was placed on behalf of Germany and Norway by the L'organisation conjointe de cooperation en matiere d'armement, or OCCAR, which acts as a contracting agent for the NATO Support and Procurement Agency.

"This new order further demonstrates the A330 MRTT's position as the world's premier tanker/transport aircraft," Fernando Alonso, head of Airbus Defense and Space's Military Aircraft, said in a press release. "But it also firmly establishes the MMF as one of Europe's most important collaborative programs and a model for the future European defense projects which are expected to be launched in the coming years."

The seven aircraft now ordered by participants in the MMF program is expected between 2020 and 2022.

Representatives of the countries and agencies and an amendment for the additional aircraft weere signed on Monday.

"The contract amendment signifies an important evolution of the MMF Program as a key capability for NATO and European Air Forces, demonstrates the increasing confidence of European nations in the cooperative solution achieved by the European Union and NATO, and recognizes the A330 MRTT product," EDA said. "Further nations are expected to join the MMF in the future and to exercise the available contract options."

The seven aircraft are to be operated in a pooling arrangement and will be configured for inflight refueling, the transport of passengers and cargo, as well as for medical evacuation.

Patria Helicopters to maintain Norway's Bell 412 fleet
Washington (UPI) Sep 27, 2017 - Patria Helicopters AB is to maintain Bell 412 helicopters flown by the Norwegian armed forces under a contract with the Norwegian Defense Logistics Organization.

The award is for four years with an option for three additional years. Contract value: nearly $8.4 million.

"We are very proud and happy for this contract which shows the trust we have gained with the NDLO," said Peter Orjes, managing director at Patria Helicopters AB.

Patria Helicopters AB, based in Sweden, is part of Patria Group. Patria is owned by the government of Finland and Norway's Kongsberg Defense and Aerospace AS.

Thee Norwegian armed forces' fleet of Bell 412 helicopters are based at Rygge and Bardufoss, Norway.

Additional details of the contract were not disclosed.

A beautiful wing design solution inspired by owl feathers
Bethlehem, PA (SPX) Sep 27, 2017
Many species of owl are able to hunt without being heard by their prey by suppressing the noise of their wings at sound frequencies above 1.6 kilohertz (kHz) - including the range at which human hearing is most sensitive. Owl wing porosity (the quality that allows air to pass resistively through the wings) helps in suppressing noise. Numerous aero-acoustic studies have examined the effect ... read more

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