Friday, January 27, 2012

Exercise Bold Alligator 2012

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (Jan. 25, 2012) Landing Craft Air-Cushion (LCAC) 53 speeds from the French navy projection and command ship FS Mistral (L9013) to the shoreline during a well deck certification. Mistral will participate in Exercise Bold Alligator 2012, the largest naval amphibious exercise in the past 10 years. The exercise will take place Jan. 30 through Feb. 12.

India gets its first Russian nuclear submarine

Representatives of the Russian Navy handed over on lease the naval forces of India, the nuclear-powered submarine Nerpa . Ceremony was held on the morning of January 23 in the port of Bolshoi Kamen in Primorye region (Russian Far East).

The event was attended by Indian Ambassador in Russia, the Commander of the Eastern Military District, Admiral Konstantin Sidenko as well as representatives of the command of the Indian Navy and the Ministry of Defense of Russia.

Agreement whereby the submarine Nerpa was transmitted to the leasing of India for 10 years, the parties had signed in December 2011. The right to use the submarine to India paid more than $ 900 million. The submarine was raised the Indian flag. In addition, he received a new name - the Chakra .

K-152 Nerpa attack submarine is a nuclear-powered classified by NATO as Shuka-B or Akula, can lead torpedoes into cruise missiles. It was launched on June 24, 2006. The crew of the submarine is 73 people and maximum diving depth - 600 meters, the maximum speed under water - 32 knots. The submarine can remain up to 100 days at sea without returning to port.

The tragedy in Nerpa occurred on November 8, 2008 in the Sea of Japan during testing of fire extinguishing system. Caused the death of three soldiers and 17 civilians. After this incident, the submarine has been repaired and only day December 28, 2009 was introduced to service the Russian navy.

This contract is held in January in the first place in the ranking Russian military of commercial operations in 2011, according to the Center for Analysis of Global Arms Trade (CACM), told RIA Novosti the member of the CACM, Igor Korotchenko. Next year, India remains the most important partner for Russia, because 60% of exports of Russian arms (7, 7 billion) in 2012 will be destined for this country.

According to the CACM biggest transfer the Indian Navy will be held in December 2012 with delivery of the aircraft carrier Vikramaditya (formerly the aircraft carrier Admiral Gorchkov class "Kiev"). The updated cost, changed several times, finally came to 2.34 billion dollars. The carrier should be completely renovated equipped with 20 MiG-29K.

Also planned is the provision of two frigates type 1135.6 Talwar class worth about $ 1 billion. The frigates will be equipped with this type of cruise missile BrahMos, developed by a bilateral Russian-Indian company. The missiles have a range of up to 300 km.

Thirdly Russia will sell India some 40 Mi-17V-5, 21 Su-30MKI fighters, 12 Su-30MKI (contract 2007), and fighters MiG-29K/KUB, variant for naval aircraft carrier to India modern electronic control systems, less visible to radar and able to carry more fuel. This version has folding wings, hook retention and reinforced landing gear. Other innovations are the integration of the navigation system Frances Sigma-95, a GPS module and a targeting system Topsight helmet. The MiG-29 KUB is aversion of the two-seater MiG-29K.

The MIG-29 is more maneuverable than any aircraft west, performing a maneuver called a "flip up" in the MIG-29 without changing its course, comes at an angle of attack high in the range of 80 °, with the possibility to shoot an enemy in the course crossed.

"Russia, according to 2011 data, ranks second worldwide in terms of military exports. Last year he sold weapons to 11.29 billion dollars, representing 16.1% of the global market. Forecast for 2012-is $ 11.3 billion, which represent 17.3% said Korotchenko. "U.S. ranks first, the volume of arms exports in 2011 of them was 28.76 billion dollars (41% of the overall market). In 2012, with the basis of existing contracts, the sale of American weapons will fall to $ 25.58 billion (39.3%), "he said.

Carrier Ready for India After Eight Year Wait

A Russian aircraft carrier which is being refurbished for the Indian Navy will begin sea trials in May for the first time in two decades and is to be handed over to India by December 2012, a shipyard official said on Tuesday.

The purchase of the Soviet-built Admiral Gorshkov was agreed in 2004 with delivery initially due for 2008. The delivery date slipped on numerous occasions and the final price for the ship has more than doubled.

The cost of refurbishing Gorshkov, to be renamed INS Vikramaditya, has gone up from $947 million to $2.3 billion.

“The vessel is expected to undertake sea trials at the end of May,” Sergei Novosyolov, deputy director of the Sevmash shipyard in the far northern port of Severodvinsk, which is refitting the 45,000-ton ship which Russia took out of service in 1992.

Russia is one of India’s largest suppliers of military hardware.

Ninety-six Indian specialists are currently being trained to operate the ship, Novosyolov said, adding that the final number of those to be trained is 1,401.

Last week, a Russian military source said Russia would hand over the nuclear-powered Nerpa submarine to India by the end of the month.

Russia’s Bulava Carrying Sub to Enter Service by June

Russia’s newest nuclear-powered submarine, the Yury Dolgoruky, will be put into operation in the second quarter of the year, the United Shipbuilding Corporation said on Friday.

The Borey-class Project 955 sub will be armed with the Bulava intercontinental ballistic missiles but a USC representative said it was yet to be decided when the troubled missile will enter service.

The sub’s construction began in 1996 at the Sevmash shipyard and was completed in 2008. It has a crew of 130 and will be armed with 16 Bulava SLBMs and six SS-N-15 cruise missiles.

President Dmitry Medvedev said in late December that the flight tests of the Bulava SLBM were completed and it will now be adopted for service with the Russian Navy.

Russia successfully test launched two Bulava missiles on December 23.

They were the 18th and 19th test launches of the troubled Bulava. Only 11 launches have been officially declared successful.

But some analysts suggest that in reality the number of failures is considerably larger. Russian military expert Pavel Felgenhauer said that of the Bulava's first 12 test launches, only one was entirely successful.

Despite several previous failures, officially blamed on manufacturing faults, the Russian military has insisted that there is no alternative to the Bulava.

The Bulava (SS-NX-30) SLBM, developed by the Moscow Institute of Thermal Technology (since 1998), carries up to 10 MIRV warheads and has a range of over 8,000 kilometers (5,000 miles). The three-stage ballistic missile is designed for deployment on Borey-class nuclear submarines.

Friday, January 20, 2012

The second production model F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft to be delivered, BF-8, arrives at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

The second production model F-35B short takeoff/vertical landing (STOVL) aircraft to be delivered, BF-8, arrives at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. on Jan. 11, 2012. BF-8 was delivered to the U.S. Marine Corps 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing's Marine Fighter/Attack Training Squadron 501 at Eglin. BF-8 followed the first production model STOVL, BF-6, which was delivered earlier the same day.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

India rejoins the nuclear submarine league

NEW DELHI, (UPI) -- India officially rejoined the nuclear submarine operators' club when the Russian manufacturers handed over to an Indian crew the Nerpa, in Russia's far east.

The crew will set sail for India toward the end of January in the 8,000-ton submarine that will be renamed Chakra, The Times of India said.

Nuclear submarines are operated also by the United States, Russia, Britain, France and China. India briefly operated a nuclear submarine form 1988-91 when it leased a Charlie class vessel from Russia. It, too, was called the Chakra while in service with the Indian navy.

The Akula II class Nerpa submarine will be with the Indian navy under a 10-year lease from the Russians, The Times of India report said.

Handover of the Nerpa was completed during a signing ceremony at the Bolshoi Kamen shipbuilding yard in Bolshoy Kamen, a small coastal town whose main activity is construction and repair of nuclear subs.

Bolshoy is around 25 miles from Vladivostok in the isolated Primorsky Krai region and is off-limits to foreigners.

The Nerpa leaves Russia after a controversial history, including a fatal on-board fire in November 2008 just after the vessel was made operational by the Russian navy.

The vessel was sailing through the Sea of Japan when the firefighting system was accidentally activated, Russian media reported at the time. Three naval personnel and 17 civilian specialists died after inhaling chemical gases, Russia's Defense Ministry said.

Amur Shipbuilding began construction of the Nerpa at their plant in Komsomolsk-on-Amur around 1993. The ship was intended for the Russian navy but delays and financial problems lengthened the construction schedule.

A $650 million deal with Indian government in 2004 rescued the program which by then had been stopped. The Nerpa finally was launched in October 2008 and entered service with the Russian navy in late 2009, pending handover to India.

The Chakra will be joined by another nuclear submarine, the Arihant, built by the Ship Building Center in Visakhapatnam. A launch ceremony for the 6,000-ton, 365-foot Arihant was in July 2009 and the ship with a crew of up to 100 is expected to be operational by the end of this year.

A report by the defense news Web site Defense Professionals in July 2009 said the Arihant design possibly is based on the older 5,000-ton Russian Charlie-II class submarine. Russia decommissioned it last Charlie class sub in 1994.

Vizag: N-powered attack sub to arrive by Jan 31

VISAKHAPATNAM: India’s first nuclear-powered attack submarine is expected to reach Visakhapatnam by the end of this month after final test trials in Russian waters. A sophisticated vessel of the Akula class, the sub, bearing the name Nerpa in the Russian Navy, has been leased to the Indian Navy initially for a period of 10 years. It is likely to be renamed INS Chakra at its commissioning programme to be held shortly.

The lease will cost the Indian government an estimated 920 million US dollars. Nerpa was commissioned into the Russian Navy in Dec. 2009. After refitting it to meet India’s needs, the Russian Navy trained a team of Indian naval officers on it in early 2010 and handed it over to its Indian counterpart on Dec. 30.

As per an earlier schedule, the submarine was expected to join the Indian Navy in late 2011 but this was delayed by an accident on the submarine, Indian Navy sources told Express.

Though a dispute arose between India and Russia consequent to the accident, they resolved that the agreement will hold good and the transfer will be implemented as per schedule. “Chakra will in all likelihood be commissioned into the Indian Navy in the first week of Feb.

“This will make India the sixth nation in the world to have a nuclear-powered attack submarine,” sources said.

The submarine has a dual hull and sails at a speed of 10 knots on surface waters with a maximum speed of 30 knots under water, sources said.