World 

Defense News , China :-  China has declared a groundbreaking achievement in military technology with the development of a system named "Golden Veil," designed to cloak its cruise missiles and render them indistinguishable from regular passenger planes on enemy radar.The innovation, hailing from a research team in northwest China, operates by manipulating a missile radar cross-section to imitate the appearance of large commercial aircraft like the Boeing 737 or Airbus A320. Described as functioning similarly to an umbrella, the Golden Veil provides the capability for an airborne weapon to seamlessly transition between visibility and stealth modes mid-flight.The technology, as reported by the South China Morning Post, not only disguises the missiles but also aims to cut down the response time available to military commanders facing the threat.Referred to as a potential game-changer in warfare, the Golden Veil comprises gold-plated fine metal threads intricately woven to form a web that reflects radar signals. Weighing in at approximately one kilogram (2.2 pounds), this versatile technology is compatible with various missiles within the People Liberation Army arsenal. Moreover, it is said to be crafted from low-cost materials, suggesting a high demand in the future.This development is seen as part of China efforts to bolster its military capabilities, particularly in the context of an apparent "technology race" with the United States. The Golden Veil, with its potential to significantly impact aerial combat strategies, represents a transformative leap forward, according to the scientists responsible for its creation.However, despite its promising capabilities, the Golden Veil may encounter hurdles during mass production. Ensuring consistent performance will be crucial, prompting suggestions that China might need to invest further in advanced automation and production techniques to meet the challenges of large-scale manufacturing.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 15:32:16
 Space & Technology 

Space News ,China :- China Shenzhou-17 astronauts conducted their inaugural extravehicular activity on Thursday to address minor damage to a solar array on the Tiangong space station. The spacewalk, lasting approximately 7.5 hours, involved mission commander Tang Hongbo and Tang Shengjie, who reentered Tiangong through the Wentian science module EVA hatch at 8:35 a.m. Eastern on December 21, as reported by the China Manned Space Engineering Office (CMSEO).One of the crucial tasks during the Shenzhou-17 spacewalk was a repair test on a solar array of the Tianhe core module, which had incurred minor damage from micrometeoroid hits. The success of this experimental repair work signifies a significant milestone for China in its efforts to maintain the operational status of the Tiangong space station for at least a decade.Inside Tiangong, crewmate Jiang Xinlin played a role in assisting the operation using the space station robotic arm. Notably, Tang Shengjie, at 34 years old, became China youngest astronaut to undertake an extravehicular activity.Tang Hongbo, reflecting on the spacewalk, emphasized its extraordinary significance and extreme challenges. He shared his profound experience, stating, "At that moment, being there, I deeply felt the vastness of the starry sky and the profound meaning of infinite space exploration," according to CCTV.A highlight video released by CMSEO showcased the astronauts conducting close-up examinations of the solar array, aided by the station robotic arms.The extravehicular activity presented new challenges, according to Dong Nengli, deputy chief designer of China human spaceflight program. Unlike previous spacewalks focused on installation and checks, this one involved experimental servicing, operating on a flexible and thin solar wing, posing operational space limitations.The successful spacewalk is seen as a significant achievement, laying a solid foundation for future extravehicular repairs, ensuring the space station safety and reliability. The precision required in the repair work demanded high levels of coordination between the astronauts and ground control, verifying accuracy in position and operation proficiency.Looking ahead, China has completed the construction of Tiangong in October 2022 and is actively developing plans for its utilization. CMSEO plans to launch an additional module to expand the orbital outpost, and the selection process for the first international astronauts to visit Tiangong is underway.Furthermore, the evolving Tiangong plans include the participation of civilian astronauts and non-state-owned enterprise (SOE) companies, potentially altering the global image of the Chinese space program. Gui Haichao made history as the first Chinese civilian in space during the Shenzhou-16 mission earlier this year.Commercial launch firms may also play a role in a new low-cost cargo system to supply Tiangong. The arrival of components for a Long March 7 rocket at the Wenchang spaceport on December 21 signals preparations for the Tianzhou-7 cargo mission to Tiangong in mid-January.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 14:57:08
 India 

Defense News , India :- In a tragic incident on Thursday, heavily-armed terrorists ambushed two Army vehicles in the Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir, resulting in the loss of five soldiers and leaving two others injured, according to officials from news agency PTI. The attack unfolded at Dhatyar Morh, situated between Dhera Ki Gali and Bufliaz, around 3:45 pm.Sources revealed to India Today TV that the terrorists strategically chose the Dhatyar Morh location for the attack, exploiting a blind curve and rough road to force the Army vehicles to slow down. Perched atop a hill at Dhatyar Morh, between Dhera Ki Gali and Bufliaz, the assailants unleashed a hail of bullets upon the two Army vehicles.Reports suggest that the terrorists might have conducted reconnaissance at the attack site, where a truck and a Maruti Gypsy were ambushed. It is believed that three or four terrorists were involved in the assault, taking advantage of the vulnerability created by the blind curve.The assailants targeted the Army vehicles precisely when they decelerated at the blind curve, demonstrating a calculated and ruthless approach.Notably, the People Anti-Fascist Front (PAFF), an offshoot of the terror group JeM, was involved in this attack and had been banned by the Union Ministry of Home Affairs earlier in the year. PAFF, formed in 2019, has a history of engaging in terror activities in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of the country.The Home Ministry, in response to a question in the Rajya Sabha, outlined PAFFs involvement in radicalizing youth for recruitment and training in handling weaponry, issuing threats to Indian security forces, political leaders, and civilians in Jammu and Kashmir, and actively conspiring, both physically and on social media, to carry out violent terrorist acts.Citing various acts of terrorism committed by PAFF in India, the Home Ministry, through a notification, declared PAFF a banned organization under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967. Notably, PAFF had previously claimed responsibility for a terror attack in April, resulting in the death of five Jawans in Poonch.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 14:19:11
 World 

Defense News ,North Korea :- The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is expressing concerns over North Korea potential launch of a new operational nuclear reactor at the Yongbyon site. This move could lead to the production of additional plutonium, a critical element in the development of nuclear weapons.Evidence suggests that Pyongyang is actively using the 5-megawatt reactor at the facility to burn fuel for the production of plutonium. Recent observations by the IAEA reveal that the reactor cooling system is discharging warm water, indicating its sustained operation over the past few months. IAEA Chief Rafael Grossi stated that the warm water discharge aligns with the commissioning process of a new reactor, emphasizing that such a process takes time.Despite these observations, the IAEA has been denied access to the Yongbyon reactor since 2009 when North Korea severed ties with the agency and its inspectors. The UN relies on satellite imaging to monitor the site, making it challenging to obtain accurate information about the reactor operational status.Grossi highlighted the importance of nuclear safety in the commissioning of a new reactor, emphasizing that it is the sovereign responsibility of the state. However, without access to the facility, the IAEA cannot confirm the reactor operational status or assess its safety.North Korea actions related to its nuclear program are viewed by the IAEA as a threat to international peace and security. Grossi reiterated that the development and operation of the Light Water Reactor (LWR) violate UN Security Council resolutions, emphasizing the need for North Korea to cooperate with the IAEA and address outstanding issues.Grossi called upon North Korea to promptly cooperate with the IAEA in the full implementation of its Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty Safeguards Agreement. He urged the country to resolve all outstanding issues, especially those arising during the absence of agency inspectors. The IAEA expressed readiness to engage with North Korea on various issues, including nuclear safety.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 14:09:08
 Space & Technology 

Space News , India :- Lt Gen (retd) AK Bhatt, the Director General of the Indian Space Association, underscored the pivotal role of the impending Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) policy in shaping the trajectory of the space sector development. Anticipating the finalization of the government FDI policy, Bhatt expressed confidence that it would play a crucial role in garnering funds from prominent Indian corporations once they achieve profitability.Envisioning a transformative impact, Bhatt highlighted the financial incentives that the FDI policy would offer to private players, enabling them to not only secure funds domestically but also tap into international sources. This optimistic outlook for 2024 sets the stage for a significant boost in the space sector financial landscape.The Indian Space Association (ISpA) sheds light on the forthcoming FDI policy, suggesting the possibility of permitting 100 per cent foreign investment in satellite operations, launch vehicle manufacturing, and subsystem production. A notable shift from the existing FDI policy, which limits foreign investment in satellite establishment and operations to the government route, the proposed changes aim to facilitate up to 74 per cent overseas ownership through the automatic route and up to 100 per cent through the government route.The impetus behind this policy revision is rooted in the ambition to attract global investors to contribute to the burgeoning field of satellite communications. Recognizing the potential of the Indian space startup ecosystem, the government seeks to surpass the $110 million investments garnered last year.The achievements of 2023 set a compelling backdrop for the anticipated developments. India successful landing of Chandrayaan-3 and the launch of Aditya-L1, the nation inaugural solar mission, not only solidified India position in the global space economy but also fueled the momentum for the private space sector within the country.Amidst noteworthy milestones in the government sector, the private domain also witnessed significant events, such as the ISRO/NSILs launch of the second batch of 36 OneWeb satellites in March 2023. OneWeb India, having secured approval from the Indian space regulator IN-SPACe, is poised to become the pioneer in offering satellite broadband services, marking a noteworthy stride in space-based communication services within India.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 14:01:27
 India 

Defense News , India :- Bhanu Prakash Srivastava, the Chairman and Managing Director of Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), is optimistic about surpassing the ₹25,000-crore mark in order inflow for the financial year 2024. Currently, the order book stands at approximately ₹23,200 crore.Srivastava highlighted that the anticipated fruition of the defense and aerospace major ₹2,000-crore order for the Early Warning (EW) system for ships is expected in the ongoing financial year.In a significant development on December 15, BEL, headquartered in Bangalore, inked a substantial contract with the Ministry of Defence for the procurement of electronic fuses for the Indian Army. Valued at ₹5,336.25 crore over a 10-year period, the contract aligns with the "Aatmanirbhar Bharat" vision and falls under the government initiative for the "Manufacture of Ammunition for Indian Army by Indian Industry."This strategic project aims to bolster ammunition stocks, reduce dependence on imports, attain self-sufficiency in ammunition manufacturing, acquire critical technologies, and safeguard against disruptions in the supply chain.The robust order book is evidently reflected in the remarkable stock performance of BEL, with shares witnessing a remarkable gain of over 70% year-to-date.Looking ahead, the company has set ambitious targets, with a revenue growth guidance of 15% for FY24 and a margin guidance ranging between 21% and 23%.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 13:54:17
 India 

In the fiscal year 2023-24, the cumulative electricity output from nuclear power facilities in India stood at approximately 32,017 Million Units, marking a notable shortfall from the targeted Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) goal of 52,340 Million Units. Over the preceding decade (2013-14 to 2022-23), these power plants played a pivotal role in generating around 411 Billion Units (BUs), preventing the release of approximately 353 million tons of CO2 into the atmosphere.Official government data reveals that concerted efforts are underway for the construction and activation of ten reactors, collectively yielding 8,000 megawatts (MW) spread across states including Gujarat, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Karnataka, and Madhya Pradesh. Simultaneously, pre-project initiatives for these reactors, endorsed by the governing authority, have been set in motion, with a slated completion date of 2031-32. Moreover, the government has given in-principle approval for a collaborative 6×1208 MW nuclear power plant with the USA at Kovvada in Srikakulam district, Andhra Pradesh.To ensure adherence to schedules and minimize the risk of unscheduled shutdowns, the Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited has implemented substantial measures for the timely closure of operational reactors. Presently, India boasts 22 nuclear power reactors spanning seven states, collectively possessing an installed capacity of 6,780 megawatts electric (MWe). This includes 18 Pressurized Heavy Water Reactors and four Light Water Reactors. Additionally, eight reactors, including the 500 MW Prototype Fast Breeder Reactor (PFBR) spearheaded by BHAVINI, are in progress, contributing a cumulative 6,000 MW and currently at various stages of development.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 04:23:32
 World 

Defense News , Ukraine Russia war :- In the course of its 22-month-long invasion, Russia has launched an extensive aerial campaign against Ukraine, firing approximately 7,400 missiles and deploying 3,700 Shahed attack drones, according to statements from Kyiv on Thursday. The sheer magnitude of Moscow aerial offensives underscores the ongoing intensity of the conflict.Air force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat revealed that Ukrainian air defenses successfully intercepted and brought down 1,600 missiles and 2,900 drones. In a televised statement, Ihnat emphasized Ukraine resilience in the face of a formidable aggressor, stating, "We are faced with an enormous aggressor, and we are fighting back."The lower success rate in intercepting missiles was attributed to the deployment of supersonic ballistic missiles, which are inherently more challenging to counter. Additionally, the delayed provision of advanced Patriot air defense systems by Western allies during the later stages of the war contributed to the challenges faced by Ukrainian forces.Throughout the invasion, Ukraine has received critical support in the form of advanced air defense systems, including multiple Patriot systems, empowering them to effectively counter incoming missiles.Conversely, the Iranian-made Shahed drones, known for their low-cost production and distinctive noisy petrol engines, have become increasingly prevalent in Russia aerial attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure beyond the war front lines in the east and south.Air force spokesperson Ihnat revealed that nightly engagements involving ten to fifteen regions have become routine in shooting down Shahed drones. Despite Russia claims of exclusively targeting military objectives, evidence indicates that civilian infrastructure, including energy facilities, has been affected, leading to thousands of documented civilian casualties.The use of Shahed drones began in September 2022, initially confounding Ukraine air defenses due to their stealthy nature, making them harder to detect than traditional missiles. This prompted Kyiv to adapt its defensive strategies to effectively counter the new threat.Facing the economic impracticality of using expensive air defense missiles against the cheaply-produced drones, Ukraine has resorted to employing vehicles with mounted machine guns to counter the aerial threat. Ihnat recalled the initial challenges, stating, "We were shooting at them with everything we could find, with pistols, submachine guns. Well, even then it became clear that the target is not simple, there are many complications, mistakes. You need to prepare."Evidence, including satellite imagery, has surfaced indicating that Russia has established its own Shahed production facilities, underscoring the evolving dynamics of the conflict and the ongoing technological adaptations by both parties.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 04:18:20
 India 

Defense News , India :- In response to a recent piracy incident, the Indian Navy has strategically deployed an indigenous guided missile destroyer in the Gulf of Aden region. The decision, outlined in a statement from the Defence Ministry, aims to bolster anti-piracy efforts in the area and underscores the Indian Navy unwavering commitment to safeguarding merchant shipping and assisting mariners as a primary responder.The incident in question occurred on the night of December 14, involving a Malta-flagged vessel named MV Ruen, which was reportedly boarded by six unknown individuals. The UKMTO portal raised the alarm, prompting swift action from the Indian Navy. On December 15, a Maritime Patrol Aircraft was dispatched to investigate, establishing communication with the vessel"s crew. Fortunately, all 18 crew members, none of whom were Indian, were found safe in the citadel.In tandem with this response, INS Kochi, engaged in anti-piracy patrol in the Gulf of Aden, was immediately diverted to provide assistance. Subsequent events unfolded as the destroyer intercepted MV Ruen on December 16, deploying its integral helicopter to assess the situation. Disturbingly, it was revealed that the pirates had breached the citadel and were holding the entire crew hostage. Despite refraining from armed intervention to ensure crew safety, INS Kochi took necessary measures to ensure the pirates treated the crew appropriately.The international response to the incident saw a Japanese warship arriving in the area on December 16, later relieved by the Spanish warship ESPNS Victoria. These vessels closely monitored the hijacked vessel"s transit towards Somalia, engaging with the pirates and coordinating actions. Eventually, the hijacked vessel entered Somalia territorial waters off Bosaso on December 17.Crucially, INS Kochi efforts resulted in the release of the injured crew member by the pirates in the early hours of December 18. Although the crew member received initial medical attention onboard, the severity of the injuries necessitated urgent medical care beyond the ship capabilities. Consequently, the injured crew member was transferred ashore to Oman on December 19 for further medical management.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 04:10:51
 World 

Defense News , Spain :- In a significant move, Spain has committed €1.7 billion (U.S. $1.9 billion) to acquire 16 Airbus C295 aircraft tailored for maritime patrol and surveillance applications, Airbus announced on Wednesday.The procurement includes six maritime patrol variants designed for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare missions, set to replace the retired Spanish P-3 Orion fleet from the end of 2022. Outfitted with advanced technology such as magnetic anomaly detectors, sonobuoys for submarine detection, and a multimode radar for long-range target detection, these aircraft will also feature satellite communications capabilities. The aircraft will serve as "highly connected" flying command-and-control centers, equipped with torpedoes for added defensive capabilities.Simultaneously, the remaining 10 C295 aircraft, configured for maritime surveillance, are slated to replace Spain aging CN-235 fleet, which has been in operation since 1988. Airbus plans to equip these aircraft to combat illegal activities such as smuggling, illegal migration, and drug trafficking, as well as conduct search and rescue missions.Spain, already operating a fleet of 13 C295 aircraft in a transport configuration, anticipates a seamless integration with the two new maritime versions. Assembly of the aircraft will take place at Airbus military facilities in Seville, with the first C295 in the maritime patrol configuration expected to be delivered in 2027, followed by the surveillance configuration in the subsequent year, and the final aircraft in 2031. The C295, originally designed and manufactured by CASA, a predecessor company of Airbus, boasts an impressive track record with a total of 283 planes ordered by the end of November, 216 of which have already been delivered.The contract encompasses comprehensive training systems, including a full flight simulator, along with an initial logistics support package. The government, having approved the budget for the C295 aircraft in June, officially signed the contract in September. This move further solidifies the C295s export success for Airbus, with notable orders from the Indian Air Force as well.Powered by two Pratt & Whitney turboprops, the C295 has a maximum takeoff weight of 23 metric tons. According to Airbus, the armed maritime patrol version can operate for two and a half hours at a distance of 800 nautical miles from takeoff and up to six and a half hours at a distance of 400 nautical miles. This strategic investment reflects Spain commitment to enhancing its maritime capabilities with cutting-edge technology.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-22 04:05:49
 World 

Defense News , Austreia :- In a significant stride toward enhancing its military capabilities, the Austrian Army has extended its contract with joint venture company Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles (RMMV) for the delivery of 300 trucks, valued at €300 million ($329 million). This development is part of the broader Austrian Army Build-up Plan 2023 initiative, reflecting a substantial investment in bolstering the nation defense capabilities.The expanded agreement builds upon a pre-existing contract that encompassed up to 1,375 military vehicles, with an estimated total value of €525 million ($574 million). The two-year project timeline allows for flexible call-offs of vehicles, providing adaptability to the Austrian Army evolving requirements.RMMVs HX truck range will play a pivotal role in this venture, offering robust off-road support through wear-free shock absorbers and stabilizers. With a gross train weight capability of up to 120 tons, these trucks serve as versatile cargo and troop carriers. The six-cylinder MAN D2066 engine propels the vehicles to an operational range of 300 miles (483 kilometers) at a maximum speed of 62 miles per hour.Highlighting the strategic significance of this collaboration, RMMV Managing Director Michael Wittlinger emphasized that these new capabilities will significantly enhance the resilience and sustainment of the Austrian Army. Wittlinger stated, "The expansion of the framework agreement with Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles GmbH is another strong sign that the Austrian Army is modernizing, but this applies all the more so to the Austrian economy."This partnership underscores RMMVs commitment to supporting the Austrian Army modernization efforts, as evidenced by the previous collaboration involving military vehicles from the company TGM, TGS, and HX lines. The joint efforts aim to facilitate the integration of cutting-edge technology and capabilities into the Austrian military, ensuring it remains well-equipped for contemporary defense challenges.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 15:48:09
 World 

Defense News ,Sri Lanka :- In a recent development, Sri Lanka has decided to impose a one-year moratorium on allowing foreign vessels to conduct research in its territorial waters, according to statements by Foreign Minister Ali Sabry. This decision comes amidst a surge in docking requests from Chinese surveillance ships, raising concerns in New Delhi about potential espionage activities targeting Indian defense installations.Sabry conveyed that the Sri Lankan government has communicated this decision to relevant countries, citing the need for capacity development to ensure the nation active and equal participation in future research activities. The move comes in response to China request to berth another research vessel in Sri Lanka waters in January next year.China has regularly dispatched research and surveillance vessels to Sri Lanka, with instances such as the arrival of the Chinese People Liberation Army Navy warship HAI YANG 24 HAO in August this year. Notably, the Chinese Survey and Research Vessel "Shi Yan 6" docked at Colombo port in October, conducting research activities in the Indian Ocean despite objections from India.Past incidents, such as the port call of the Chinese ballistic missile and satellite tracking ship "Yuan Wang 5" in Hambantota, have triggered strong reactions from India due to concerns about sophisticated tracking systems potentially compromising Indian defense installations.Sabry emphasized that the 12-month moratorium is aimed at enhancing Sri Lanka capacity for meaningful participation in research endeavors. The government is also navigating geopolitical considerations, especially with upcoming elections, to maintain diplomatic ties without antagonizing any specific country.In addition to the moratorium, Sri Lanka has developed a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for foreign military vessels and aircraft arriving in the country. Sabry highlighted that the guidelines under the SOP have been shared with all countries deploying their vessels to Sri Lankan waters over the past decade, ensuring a standardized approach in such interactions.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 15:38:21
 World 

Defense News , China :- In the latest development of the ongoing South China Sea sovereignty dispute, China Foreign Minister Wang Yi has emphasized the country commitment to maintaining military pressure on the Philippines. This announcement comes in the wake of a phone conversation between Wang and his Philippine counterpart, Enrique A. Manalo, during which Wang warned against any misjudgments or collaboration with external forces by the Philippines.Wang comments follow China recent mobilization of its coast guard and maritime militia to impede Philippine supply missions aimed at supporting its soldiers and fishermen. The South China Sea dispute involves conflicting territorial claims by China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Taiwan, and Brunei, all vying for control over islands, reefs, and undersea resources in the region.Accusing the Philippines of altering its policy stance and reneging on promises, Wang declared that the bilateral relationship is at a critical juncture. Wang urged caution on the part of the Philippines, emphasizing the need to handle the maritime situation responsibly. However, he provided no details on the agreements that Manila allegedly abandoned.The conversation between Wang and Manalo was described as a "frank and candid exchange," leading to a "clearer understanding of respective positions on a number of issues," according to Manalo office. Territorial tensions have escalated as China seeks to solidify its claims, challenging the US and its allies, including the Philippines.Notably, the head of the Philippine military encountered aggressive actions by Chinese coast guard ships, including a water cannon blast and dangerous maneuvers, adding to the growing tensions. China accused the United States of encouraging provocations by its treaty ally, the Philippines, without providing direct evidence.As Washington is bound by a 1951 treaty to defend the Philippines from attack, the situation has become more precarious with the recent election of President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. He highlighted the urgency of the South China Sea issue as China expands its presence, expressing concern about China increasing interest in atolls and shoals close to the Philippines.The geopolitical standoff continues, with the Philippines urged to exercise caution, and China reiterating its determination to defend its rights in accordance with the law. The international community watches closely as tensions rise in one of the world most crucial waterways for shipping.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 15:37:05
 Space & Technology 

Space News :- In a strategic move, Karim Michel Sabbagh, former SES CEO and E-Space Managing Director for Europe and the Middle East, is set to lead the innovative venture, Space42. The proposed merger, valued at approximately $4 billion, combines the strengths of regional satellite operator Yahsat and geospatial intelligence provider Bayanat.Yahsat, a subsidiary of Mubadala, the UAEs state-owned investment company, originally transformed Bayanat from a UAE Armed Forces entity into a commercial powerhouse over a decade ago. Currently majority-owned by G42, a UAE-based AI and cloud provider partially owned by Mubadala, Bayanat and Yahsat shareholders are poised to hold 54% and 46% stakes, respectively, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals in the second half of 2024.Mansoor Al Mansoori, former Bayanat chairman and current chair of the Abu Dhabi Department of Health, is slated to lead Space42 as its chair. Bakheet Al Katheeri, CEO of Mubadala UAE Investments platform, is set to be the vice chairman of the merged group.Described as the Middle East and Africa first AI-powered space technology company, Space42 aims to leverage the synergies between Bayanat geospatial analytics and AI algorithms and Yahsat satellite infrastructure backbone. The two entities had previously collaborated on ordering five synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellites from Finnish Earth observation operator Iceye, with the first launch targeted for the first quarter of 2024.E-Space, under Sabbagh leadership, had initially focused on advancing AI technology to enhance connectivity services, particularly for its constellation of satellites. Despite being in stealth mode until February 2022 and securing $50 million in seed financing, specific details about the proposed constellation remained limited. E-Space had partnered with Emirati telco e& to develop AI technology for managing data traffic across its planned space-based network.Sabbagh, confirming his departure from E-Space, expressed his dedication to spearheading efforts to establish Space42. As both Bayanat and Yahsat are listed on the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, a crucial shareholder meeting is anticipated in the first quarter of 2024 to seal the merger deal.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 15:19:04
 World 

Defense News , Germany :- The German Parliamentary Budget Committee has given the green light to a substantial investment exceeding three billion euros for the acquisition of guided missiles. This significant funding includes 3.01 billion euros ($3.30 billion) for 500 Patriot air defense system guided missiles and approximately 108 million euros ($118 million) for 120 IRIS-T air-to-air guided missiles, intended to replace munitions supplied to Ukraine.Delivery timelines have been established for these acquisitions, with Patriot interceptors scheduled for deployment between 2027 and 2033, while the IRIS-T missiles are set to be dispatched by 2026.In a bid to maintain air combat superiority through the 2040s, the German military has initiated studies for an enhanced version of the Meteor air-to-air guided missile. The MBDA beyond-visual-range missile, currently integrated into the German Air Force Eurofighter aircraft, will undergo examination with a focus on potential modifications to the radar homing head, propulsion system, data link, and warhead. The German Ministry of Defense has allocated 34.9 million euros ($38.19 million) for these studies, which are slated to commence next year. Reports outlining adaptation options are anticipated to be available in 2025, with the participation of five other countries in the collaborative project.In addition to these advancements, the German Ministry of Defense is exploring the development of a successor to the Gepard anti-aircraft gun tank, retired in 2010. Following the outbreak of the conflict in 2022, Germany has supplied Ukraine with 80 Gepards to bolster defenses against low-flying aerial threats, including drones.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:35:32
 India 

Defense News , India :- In a recent revelation, an Indian defence agency has been identified as a buyer of surveillance equipment from Cognyte Software Ltd, an Israeli spyware firm often touted as an alternative to the controversial Pegasus software. Trade data, examined by The Hindu, exposes the transactions, raising concerns about the potential misuse of such technology. Notably, Cognyte is currently entangled in a class action lawsuit in the United States filed by investors.Allegations against Cognyte include the unauthorized targeting of journalists, dissidents, critics of authoritarian regimes, opposition families, and human rights activists globally. The U.S. law firm Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check LLP referenced a "threat report" by Meta Platforms, the parent company of Facebook, shedding light on the "Surveillance for Hire" industry.Despite anonymous claims from defense sources asserting that the Indian Army lacks equipment capable of monitoring endpoint communication devices like smartphones, trade data paints a different picture. For more than three years, Cognyte and its parent company, Verint Systems Inc., have been supplying computer gear to the Signal Intelligence Directorate (SID) under the Ministry of Defence , Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA). Notably, the SID has not recorded any other imports in recent years, and the latest product, received in January, pertains to communication equipment cards, not encrypted devices.Cognyte has remained silent on inquiries regarding these imports. Recent reports from the Financial Times suggest that the Indian government is exploring spyware options to rival the NSO Group Pegasus, with Cognyte being one of the firms under consideration.The controversial Pegasus spyware had reportedly targeted Indian activists, journalists, and politicians, as revealed by the Forbidden Stories consortium of journalists. While the Indian government neither confirmed nor denied purchasing the spyware, trade data reviewed by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) indicated that the Intelligence Bureau (IB) imported gear from the NSO Group in 2017, a fact independently confirmed by The Hindu.In 2019, an SID official, speaking anonymously to The Week magazine, disclosed the agency use of spyware. The official claimed that a malicious link sent via WhatsApp played a crucial role in apprehending Mudasir Ahmed Khan, the alleged mastermind behind the Pulwama terror strike that claimed the lives of 40 Central Reserve Police Force personnel.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:28:51
 World 

Defense News , Canada :- General Dynamics has successfully clinched contracts totaling 1.68 billion Canadian dollars ($1.3 billion) to fortify the Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (C4ISR) system of the Canadian Army.Under the first contract, General Dynamics is tasked with providing a comprehensive architectural and design framework for the C4ISR system, ensuring that all stipulated army requirements are meticulously met. This contract also encompasses the seamless integration of land C4ISR capabilities, spanning from mobile units to headquarters domains and simulation assets.The second contract is geared towards furnishing essential core network support for the Canadian Army C4ISR system across diverse domains. This endeavor aims to establish the C4ISR system as the digital backbone, fostering effective operation throughout the entire land C4ISR capability.Addressing the imperative of securely delivering information to end-users, the third contract mandates General Dynamics to provide support for user-facing services and software. These services and software play a pivotal role in transporting crucial data to the military through the C4ISR system.Devoting attention to Intelligence, Surveillance, Target Acquisition, and Reconnaissance (ISTAR) capability, the fourth contract underscores the augmentation of the Canadian Army ISTAR capabilities. General Dynamics is set to deliver standalone systems, integrated sub-systems, and other specialized products to enhance ISR services. These systems will empower the army to control, manage, and distribute intelligence efficiently, supporting data gathered by sensors across land, airborne, and naval domains.Joel Houde, Vice President of General Dynamics, affirmed the company commitment to supporting the Canadian Armed Forces, citing over 75 years of collaboration marked by superb engineering and technical prowess. Houde expressed confidence in General Dynamics ability to innovate and excel in the evolving battlespace, emphasizing the company dedication to the ongoing digitization of the Canadian Armed Forces.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:18:07
 Space & Technology 

Defense News , U.S :- Defense contractor L3Harris has recently received the green light from the Space Development Agency (SDA) to advance into the production phase for 16 satellites designed to detect and monitor hypersonic missiles aimed at the United States and its allies. The approval follows the successful completion of critical design and production readiness reviews for L3Harris satellite technology.The SDA, a key entity within the U.S. Space Force, is actively constructing the Proliferated Warfighter Space Architecture, a layered network of satellites. This architecture includes a Transport Layer comprising interconnected communication satellites that will transmit data collected by the Tracking Layer, which consists of sensor satellites.In 2022, L3Harris secured a substantial $700 million contract to design and manufacture 16 Tracking Layer Tranche 1 satellites. Additionally, the contract involves providing ground systems and support services. The satellite bus supplier for this ambitious project is Maxar Technologies, as selected by L3Harris.Highlighting the significance of this initiative, Bob De Cort, Director of Program Management at L3Harris, emphasized, “Hypersonic missiles are the most destabilizing kinetic weapons in our adversaries arsenals due to their dim flight profiles, varied launch points, and high maneuverability. To deter their use and, when needed, to defeat them, the United States requires a resilient sensor platform to remove the veil from their flight paths.”L3Harris satellite production facilities in Melbourne, Florida, and Fort Wayne, Indiana, are actively contributing to the project. The company has already delivered four prototype tracking satellites under a previous $193 million contract for Tranche 0, though they have faced some delays in launching this year.The Tracking Layer Tranche 1 satellites are currently slated for launch in 2025. Its worth noting that Northrop Grumman and Raytheon RTX are also engaged in the production of Tracking Layer Tranche 1 satellites under separate contracts.This initiative to deploy reliable hypersonic detection capabilities comes at a crucial time, as nations like China, Russia, and others are advancing their development of maneuverable high-speed weapons designed to evade conventional defensive systems.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:12:57
 India 

Defense News , India :- In a recent update to a parliamentary standing committee, the government revealed that the procurement of 114 multi-role fighter aircraft (MRFA) is actively progressing under the Make-in-India framework. The committee, led by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Jual Oram, recommended exploring the option of acquiring fifth-generation fighter aircraft "over the counter" if delays persist in the MRFA project.The parliamentary panel report, presented in Parliament on Wednesday, highlighted concerns over delays in the supply of 40 light combat aircraft (LCA) to the Indian Air Force (IAF) and setbacks in the Kaveri jet engine project. Given the challenges faced by the IAF, the committee suggested that the government should consider swift procurement of advanced fifth-generation fighter aircraft to maintain a robust defense force.The IAF initiated the MRFA procurement with an RFI in April 2019, aiming to acquire 114 aircraft at a cost of approximately USD 18 billion. However, the committee expressed apprehension about potential delays, pointing to the challenges faced in previous projects such as the LCA and Kaveri engine.The Kaveri project, aimed at developing an indigenous fighter jet engine, has encountered significant delays, contributing to the concerns raised by the parliamentary panel. The government informed the committee that the IAF currently operates with 31 fighter aircraft squadrons, falling short of the authorized strength of 42. Despite this, the government assured that the IAF remains fully capable of defending the nation.To address the dwindling strength of fighter squadrons, the IAF plans to induct the MRFA in a phased manner, with the procurement process aligned with the Make-in-India provisions of the Defence Acquisition Procedure 2020. The government emphasized its commitment to implementing multi-pronged approaches to overcome challenges and ensure timely and budget-friendly realization of the Make-in-India initiative.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:06:37
 World 

Defense News , Philippines :- In a significant stride toward enhancing its air surveillance capabilities, the Philippines has successfully acquired an advanced radar system from Japan. The Mitsubishi-manufactured FPS-3ME radar was officially handed over to the Philippine Air Force (PAF) during a ceremony at the Wallace Air Station in the northern part of the country.The state-of-the-art surveillance system is designed to cover vast distances, spanning hundreds of miles, thereby playing a crucial role in safeguarding the sovereignty of the Philippines. "With over 7,000 islands to guard, the PAF needs the radar system to keep watch over the entire archipelago with greater accuracy and efficiency," emphasized PAF chief Lt. Gen. Stephen Parreno during a press briefing. He underscored the heightened importance of such technology given the evolving security landscape in the region.The Mitsubishi FPS-3ME radar is a long-range, active electronically scanned array radar renowned for its simultaneous detection and tracking capabilities for multiple aerial targets. With an impressive range of 330 nautical miles (611 kilometers), the radar system is set to significantly augment the PAFs ability to monitor and respond to potential threats.Describing the acquisition as "a major leap in our capability to protect our sovereign territory and ensure the safety of our citizens," Lt. Gen. Parreno highlighted the transformative impact of this advanced radar on the country defense infrastructure.As part of a 5.5-billion-peso ($98.7-million) deal, three more Japanese radar systems are anticipated to arrive in the Philippines, further fortifying the nation air surveillance capabilities.The strategic placement of the surveillance system in the northern part of the country, at the Wallace Air Station, aligns with the vision of Philippine Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro. He pointed out that this location serves as the exit point of international airspace and the entry point of Philippine airspace. Additionally, it strategically overlooks the West Philippine Sea, where reports suggest unauthorized operations by Chinese ships."We will have a clear picture, not only in the West Philippine Sea but also in other parts of the Philippines sea and air domains [to detect] those who are entering our [exclusive economic zone]," affirmed Defense Secretary Teodoro, underscoring the comprehensive coverage and strategic importance of the newly acquired radar system.

Read More → Posted on 2023-12-21 14:00:46