Page 88 - Australian Defence Magazine Dec 2018 - Jan 2019
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systems that shorten the kill chain and im- prove situational awareness.
An initial industry day was held in Feb- ruary combining both Land 907 Ph 2 and Land 8160, which involves upgrades to the M88 Hercules recovery vehicle and a new capability for breaching battlefield obstacles. First Pass for each program is scheduled for 2019-20, with Second Pass for Land 907 Ph 2 anticipated in 2021-23 and for Land 8160 in 2021-22, with IOC for both in 2023-24.
Under the Land 155 Enhanced Gap Crossing Capability project, final delivery was completed in September of UK com- pany WFEL’s rapidly-deployable military bridging, including Dry Support (DS) and Medium Girder (MG) bridges.
The double-storey, link-reinforced MG bridges can span up to 49 metres. Supple- mented by additional portable pier and span equipment, bridges of up to 76 metres can be constructed.
July saw government approval under Proj- ect 121 Phase 5B for the purchase of 1,044 additional new-generation medium and heavy Rheinmetall trucks, 812 modules and 812 trailers, worth a total of $1.4 billion.
Delivery of some 2,146 4x4 and 6x6 un- protected Mercedes Benz G-wagons was completed under Land 121 Ph 3A in 2016, whilst Land 121 Ph3B acquired 2,536 trucks and 3,858 modules from Rheinmetall. Un- der Land 121 Ph 4 some 1,100 Hawkei light protected vehicles are replacing the balance of the Land Rover fleet through a $1.3 bil- lion contract with Thales Australia. First deliveries began in early 2018 and full pro- duction will get under way in 2019.
The primary purpose of Exercise Hamel 2018, held in the Shoalwater Bay Training Area in June and July, was to certify the 7th Brigade based in Brisbane as the cur- rent ‘Ready’ combat unit under the Army’s ‘Ready, Readying and Reset’ force genera- tion cycle as outlined in Plan Beersheba.
Hamel is also an important training ex- ercise in the Joint space and the exercise has seen major growth in this area, recognising that a single service will rarely fight on its own in future conflicts, but will operate as part of a Joint Force in conjunction with other elements of the ADF, other govern- ment agencies, and coalition partners.
Brigadier Ben James, Director General Training at Army Headquarters, said that 7 Brigade came through its certification “with flying colours”.
The Thales Hawkei will see full rate production in 2019.
Other significant outcomes involved working through the process of integrat- ing the ADF and coalition participants into the Joint Force and ensuring that informa- tion could be moved around the entire bat- tlespace – Air, Sea and Land – in a seamless and timely manner.
A further outcome was the validation of the Townsville-based 2nd Battalion to form the nucleus of a Joint Pre-Landing Force (PLF).
The PLF essentially comes ashore ahead of the main landing to initially provide in- telligence, surveillance and reconnaissance to the Task Force commanders and later to conduct battlefield shaping activities.
The first delivery of Assegai 155mm muni- tions arrived in Australia in August, eight months after a contract with NIOA was executed in December 2017. The ammuni- tion is destined for use in the Army's fleet of M777A2 ultra-light howitzers under Land 17 Phase 1C.2 Future Artillery Am- munition. The new shells will supplement the ADF’s existing ammunition stock and provide increased range, lethality and first- round-on-target accuracy.
Including the qualification lots and war reserve stocks, the order is worth around $100 million. It also represents the first time that a nation using M777A2s has opt- ed for the Assegai projectile family.
Delivery of the third tranche of EF-88 rifles to replace the long-serving Steyr F88 began in late 2018 to 1st Brigade in Darwin and Army training institutions, most nota- bly the Army Recruit Training Centre and the Royal Military College - Duntroon.
Tranche One delivered the EF-88 to units in north Queensland and Tranche Two de-
livered the rifle to southern Queensland, in- cluding 7th and 17th Brigades and some of their reinforcing Reserve units, along with the RAAF and Navy. Tranche Four will equip remaining units and provide repair and attrition sticks, with final operating ca- pability being reached in 2022.
Production of the venerable Browning 9mm self-loading pistol that entered ADF service in the 1960s ended early in 2018 and the Original Equipment Manufacturer, FN Herstal of Belgium, will cease providing ongoing support. The requirements-setting phase is currently underway for a replacement that will be acquired under Project Land 159.
Risk mitigation activities (RMA) under- taken by Raytheon Australia for Project Land 19 Phase 7B (Short Range Ground- based Air Defence) were completed in Sep- tember on schedule and on budget.
Raytheon’s proposal for Second Pass con- sideration in mid-2019 will be based on the proven Raytheon/Kongsberg NASAMS (National Advanced Surface to Air Mis- sile System) that is fielded by seven nations, including the United States, and is being acquired by Indonesia and probably India.
Option 1 involves a fire distribution cen- tre in a truck-mounted shelter, Raytheon’s Sentinel high resolution, three-dimensional surveillance radar, and a standard six-mis- sile canister launcher placed on the tray of medium-weight trucks equipped with inte- grated load-handling systems.
Option 2 is an upgraded version of Op- tion 1 and includes the potential integra- tion of Canberra company CEA’s cueing and tactical radars to replace the in-service Sentinel radar. Both options include the po- tential integration into NASAMS of ADF trucks and Hawkei.
Particular focus was placed during the RMA on assessing the capability benefit, trade-offs, risk and limitation of alterna- tive counter-rocket, artillery and mortar (C-RAM) interceptors, given that the large and very expensive AMRAMM (Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile) stan- dard effector is not optimised to combat small, non-manoeuvring targets.
In September Leidos was awarded a $243.5 contract under Land 2110 Phase 1B to supply and support for five years a range of chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) defence capabilities for the ADF.
The company will supply approximately 70,000 equipment items to support De- fence’s capability to detect and protect itself from toxic industrial chemicals and weap- onised CBRN agents.
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