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News Archive 2006

Headlines and summaries of available news stories from 2006.
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08 SepChile Receives First Six ex-RNLAF F-16s
The first six of 18 ex-RNLAF F-16 MLU fighters were delivered to the Fuerza Aérea de Chile (FACh) on September 4, 2006.
06 SepBrazilian Air Force Mirage 2000s Enter Service
The Força Aérea Brasileira (FAB - Brazilian Air Force) received the first two Mirage 2000 fighters, out of a total of 12 acquired from France. The aircraft officially entered service on September 4, 2006, with the 1º Grupo de Defesa Aérea (1º GDA), in Anapolis.
31 AugFirst Phase of CF-18 Modernization Project Completed
On 31st of August, Boeing delivered the 80th modernized CF-18 aircraft to the Canadian Department of National Defence during a ceremony at L-3 Communications MAS in Mirabel, Quebec. The delivery marks the completion of Phase I of the CF-18 Modernization Project.
24 AugFirst Cougar Helicopter Delivered to Bulgaria
In a ceremony at the 24th Air Force Base in Krumovo, Bulgaria, in the presence of several Bulgarian and French officials, Eurocopter handed over the first Cougar helicopter to base commander General Stefan Petrov.
16 AugFirst Flight Boeing EA-18G Growler
The first EA-18G, known as aircraft EA-1, successfully completed its maiden flight from Lambert International Airport in St. Louis.
11 AugFirst AW139 Helicopter Delivered to Irish Air Corps
The first of four AgustaWestland AW139 helicopters for the Irish Air Corps was handed over to the Irish Air Corps at Vergiate in Italy yesterday.
10 AugVC10 Celebrates 40 Years in RAF Service
‘Forty years of RAF service’ is emblazoned across the fin of XV104, a Vickers VC10 CMk1K, of 101 Squadron RAF Brize Norton.
06 AugRoyal Air Force gets fifth C-17
The Royal Air Force will get a fifth C-17 transport aircraft,to be delivered in 2008, in a deal announced on August 4th by Under-Secretary of State for Defence, Tom Watson.
05 AugFirst flights C-27J Spartan for the Italian Air Force
On August 2nd, Alenia Aerospace announced that the first C-27J Spartan destined for the Italian Air Force made its first few flights.
04 AugBoeing Rolls Out First EA-18G Growler
On August 3rd, 2006, Boeing rolled out the first EA-18G Growler at its St. Louis facilities.
31 JulNew-Zealand Places Order for 9 NH90 Helicopters
The government of New-Zealand announced today a firm order for 9 NH90 to provide 8 operational helicopters to the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).
29 JunU.S. Army selects Eurocopter UH-145 for LUH requirement
On 29 Jun 2006, the U.S. Army’s selection for its next-generation Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) was announced, it will be Eurocopter's UH-145 helicopter.
28 JunBoeing awarded B-52H SWING contract
On June 28th, 2006, Boeing was awarded a U.S. Air Force contract worth up to USD 150 million to support new weapons integration efforts on the B-52H bomber.
24 JunCroatia to acquire 10 Mi-171Sh helicopters from Russia
Russian Federation will deliver 10 brand-new Mi-171Sh transport helicopters to the Croatian Air Force (Hrvatsko Ratno Zrakoplovstvo - HRZ) as a part of a Russian debt repayment to the Republic of Croatia.
23 JunUK orders 70 Future Lynx helicopters
On 22 June 2006, the UK Mnistry of Defence ordered 70 Future Lynx helicopters from AgustaWestland.
21 JunSecond Meteor missile firings with Gripen completed
The Meteor missile programme completed its second Air Launched Demonstration (ALD) firing on 20 June 2006. This successfully continued the first Meteor firing campaign with a Gripen fighter aircraft at the FMV Vidsel test range in northern Sweden.
20 JunAustralia orders more MRH-90 helicopters
Australia approved on 19 June 2006 the acquisition plan for 34 additional MRH-90 helicopters.
13 JunBoeing Flies EA-18G Wingtip and Jamming Pods
On May 30th, 2006, the Boeing EA-18G program test team first flew a modified F/A-18F equipped with wingtip antenna and high- and low-band jamming pods for the first time.
10 JunConformal Airborne Early Warning Gulfstream first flight
On June 5, 2006, Gulfstream Aerospace announced it had completed the first flight of its Conformal Airborne Early Warning (CAEW) special mission aircraft on May 20.
09 JunU.S. Air Force F-16 airstrike kills al-Zarqawi
Two U.S. Air Force F-16C Fighting Falcons, supporting coalition actions in Operation Iraqi Freedom, dropped precision munitions near Baquba, Iraq, on June 7, killing al Qaida’s leader in Iraq, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and other terrorists.
01 JunFirst series produced Mi-28N delivered to Russian AF
On May 29th, 2006, Rostvertol handed over the first series produced Mi-28N attack helicopter to Russia's Ministry of Defense after it completed all tests by the manufacturer.
24 MaySouth African Air Force Received First Hawk Mk.120
On Wednesday May 24th, 2006, the South African Air Force (SAAF) took delivery of its first two BAE Hawk Mk.120 lead-in fighter trainers in a ceremony at Denel's aircraft plant in Kempton Park.
17 MayUSAF Accepts First C-5M Super Galaxy
At a roll-out ceremony May 16 at Lockheed Martin’s plant in Marietta, Ga., the Air Force accepted delivery of the first C-5M Galaxy, the first of 111 that will undergo modernization at the facility, extending the fleet’s life by more than 25 years.
13 MayEurofighter First Air-to-Surface Weapon Release
On the 4th and 5th of May, 2006, EADS CASA Military Air Systems conducted the first weapon release trials for the Eurofighter.
10 MayMexico selects Sukhoi Su-27 for strategic surveillance
The Mexican navy has selected Sukhoi’s Su-27 over the Saab/BAE Systems Gripen to equip its first air defense unit.
05 MayFinland will Order two plus five C-295 Transports
On May 4th, 2006, the Finnish Air Force has officially announced that the Minister of Defence has signed the decision to select the EADS CASA C-295 as the next tactical transport aircraft.
04 MayLockheed Martin to produce 112 PAC-3 Missiles
Lockheed Martin announced on May 4th, 2006, that it received a USD 379 million contract from the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM) for the production of 112 Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missiles.
02 MayFrance to Upgrade Moroccan Mirage F-1 Fleet
Morocco has awarded France a contract worth around EUR350 million (USD420 million) to overhaul the Moroccan Air Force's fleet of 27 French Mirage F-1CH/EH fighter aircraft.
01 MayIndia Retired Last of its MiG-25s
On Monday May 1st, 2006, the Indian Air Force phased out the MiG-25 in an official ceremony at Bareilly airbase. The last four MiG-25s that remained in service were retired.
26 AprSwitzerland Orders 20 EC635/EC135 Helicopters
The Swiss procurement agency, Armasuisse, and Eurocopter signed a contract for 20 helicopters on April 25th in Berne, Switzerland.
25 AprSouth African Super Lynx 300 First Flight
The first of four Super Lynx 300 helicopters for South Africa took to the air for the first time on 24th April 2006 at AgustaWestland’s Yeovil factory in the UK.
24 AprFirst Four Upgraded MiG-29s Delivered to Slovakian AF
Recently, MiG corporation handed over the first batch of four upgraded MiG-29s to the Slovakian Air Force. The aircraft are upgraded to meet NATO and ICAO standards, in cooperation with BAE Systems and Rockwell Collins.
23 AprLockheed Martin Delivers 4,300th F-16
On April 21th, 2006, Lockheed Martin announced it had delivered the 4,300th F-16 fighter aircraft. F-16 number 4,300 will be in service for Oman, which has purchased 12 Advanced Block 50 F-16s in the Peace A’sama A’safiyah (Clear Skies) Foreign Military Sales program.
22 AprB-1B Bomber Radar Upgrade
Under a $180 million contract Boeing will upgrade AN/APQ-164 fire control radar on the U.S. Air Force's fleet of 67 B-1B long-range bomber aircraft.
21 AprJordan to buy Dutch and Belgian F-16s
On April 20th, 2006, the Netherlands and Belgium signed a letter of intent for the sale of a total of 20 F-16 fighters to Jordan.
14 AprFirst British-built Sentinel in formal flight testing
The first Sentinel R Mk1 aircraft to be completed in the UK recently left Raytheon's Broughton facility in North Wales for Greenville, Texas, where it will join the U.S.-built aircraft to undertake formal flight testing.
13 AprKorean Helicopter Program (KHP) Final Go Ahead
On April 12, 2006, the Korean Government announced its decision to give the final go-ahead to the Korean Helicopter Program (KHP) during the 2nd Defense Program Promotion Meeting. Under the program Korea will buy 245 utility helicopters to be developed by Korea Aerospace Industries Limited in partnership with Eurocopter, and produced as from 2011 onwards.
12 AprSixth RQ-4 Global Hawk Delivered to U.S. Air Force
On April 5, 2006, Northrop Grumman delivered the sixth RQ-4 Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to the U.S. Air Force.
11 AprUSMC orders Sikorsky CH-53K
Sikorsky has received a billion contract to develop the CH-53K shipborne heavylift helicopter for the US Marine Corps. First flight is scheduled for 2011, with service entry planned for 2015.
10 AprThailand Wants Six MH-60S Helicopters
The Government of Thailand has requested a possible Foreign Military Sale of six MH-60S helicopters, including 14 T700 engines, spare parts, and support. The total value, if all options are exercised, could be as high as 6 million.
08 AprThird Boeing 767 for Italian Air Force Ferried to Naples
On April 4, 2006, Boeing test pilots took off from Everett en route to Naples, Italy, in the third Boeing 767 destined for the Italian air force.
07 AprWashington Offers F/A-18E/F Super Hornet to Bulgaria
The US Government has officially offered the purchase of new F/A-18E/F Super Hornet fighter aircraft to the Republic of Bulgaria, this being the first time that Washington has offered this fighter abroad.
06 AprMyanmar Interested in More MiG-29s From Russia
In a report published on April 4th, Russian daily Kommersant revealed that the high-level delegation from Myanmar has visited Russia in order to discuss purchase of a wide variety of Russian arms and other military equipment. According Kommersant, listed on Myanmar wish-list among others were MiG-29 fighters as well as short range Tor-M1 and medium-range Buk-1M mobile air defense systems.
05 AprMiG-29UB detained in Hong-Kong was heading for US
On April 4th customs officials at Kwai Chung container terminal in Hong Kong revealed that they have foiled an attempt to smuggle an armament and engines-less MiG-29UB (Fulcrum-B) two-seat fighter through the territory.
04 AprGermany to Supply Albania with 12 Bo-105 Helicopters
On April 3, 2006, the final contract for the delivery of 12 Bölkow-Blom (MBB) Bo-105 lightweight twin-engine multi-role helicopters to the Republic of Albania was signed in Tirana between the Albanian Ministry of Defense and Eurocopter Deutschland GmbH.
03 AprA109 Enters Service With 32 The Royal Squadron
Three AgustaWestland A109 Power helicopters have entered service the 1st of April with the Royal Air Force 32 (The Royal) Squadron at RAF Northolt to the west of London. The aircraft will be used for military and government communications flying.
02 AprFirst Operational RAF Typhoon Squadron Formed
On 31 March 2006, the first operational Typhoon squadron, No. 3(Fighter) Squadron, forms at RAF Cottesmore, just a day before the Royal Air Force marks its 88th Anniversary.
31 MarRoyal Navy Sea Harriers Retired
A ceremony held at RNAS Yeovilton on Tuesday 28 March 2006 has marked the withdrawal from service of the Royal Navy's famous Sea Harrier FA.2 Jump-Jets.
26 MarChilean Navy receives first HH-65 Dauphin helicopter
On March 23, 2006, the first AS-365 Dauphin helicopter (military designation HH-65) for the Chilean Navy arrived at Base Aeronaval de Torquemada.
25 MarNATO Strategic Airlift Interim Solution
On March 23, 2006, NATO celebrated the start of a multinational contract on a Strategic Airlift Interim Solution in an event hosted by the German Defence Minister Franz Josef Jung, since Germany has taken the lead on this initiative.
24 MarEADS Casa rolls out first CN-235 for US Coast Guard
EADS Casa rolled out the first of the CN-235 Medium Range Surveillance Maritime Patrol Aircraft (MRS MPA) it is supplying to the US Coast Guard’s (USCG) Deepwater re-equipment programme at a ceremony at its facility in Seville, Spain.
22 MarFirst Five Gripen Fighters have arrived in Hungary
On March 21, 2006, the first five Saab Gripen fighters for the Hungarian Air Force arrived at Kecskémet Air Base.
21 MarFirst Poland-destined F-16 Completes Maiden Flight
Lockheed Martin announced the successful completion of the maiden flight by the first Polish F-16 Block 52+.
15 MarFirst AH-64DJP Delivered to the JGSDF
Fuji Heavy Industries (FHI) today delivered the first AH-64D Apache Longbow multi-role combat helicopter to the Japanese government during a ceremony in Japan.
09 MarFirst Upgraded HH-3F Delivered to the Italian Air Force
On March 8, 2006, AgustaWestland delivered the first HH-3F with a new integrated avionics suite to the Italian Air Force. The upgrade programme is part of a multiyear programme to improve the operational capabilities of the Air Force’s helicopter fleet.
08 MarFirst MV-22 Osprey Squadron Operational
On Friday March 03, 2006, the first MV-22 Osprey squadron was established in a ceremony at New River Air Station.
05 MarFirst EH101 For Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force
Kawasaki delivered the first of 14 EH101 helicopters to the Japanese Maritime Self Defence Force (JMSDF).
04 MarBulgaria Signs Upgrade Contract for MiG-29 Fleet
Bulgaria finally signed a contract with Russia's RSK-MiG for the modernization of 16 of its MiG-29 fighters on last Wednesday, March 1.
03 MarAustralia to Acquire Four C-17 Heavy Transports
The Australian government has selected the Boeing C-17 Globemaster III aircraft to boost its airlift capacity and give the Australian Defence Force a new Responsive Global AirLift (RGA) capability to meet its operational commitments.
02 MarAH-1Z and UH-1Y Progress Report
The H-1 Program, aimed at developing the UH-1Y and AH-1Z upgraded helicopters to replace the Marine Corps UH-1N and AH-1W fleets, completed developmental testing on February 17.
01 MarScanEagle UAV Surpasses 10,000 Combat Flight Hours
Boeing announced that the ScanEagle unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has surpassed 10,000 combat flight hours in less than two years supporting U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Navy operations.
28 FebAustralia Opts for JASSM to Equip F/A-18s
The Australian Department of Defence announced today that the Lockheed Martin Joint Air-to-Surface Stand-off Missile (or JASSM) has been selected as the new long range air-to-surface missile to equip the Australian Defence Force’s F/A-18 Hornet fleet.
25 FebVenezuela Received First Batch Mi-17s
The first batch of three Mil Mi-17V-5 medium multi-purpose helicopters arrived in Venezuela on Tuesday, 21 Feb.
24 FebUSS Reagan Launches First Air Missions in Support of OIF
On February 22nd, 2006, the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) launched its first air missions in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. F/A-18E Super Hornets assigned to VFA-115 Strike Fighter Attack Squadron were launched to drop ordnance on enemy targets.
23 FebSerbia-Montenegro to Modernize MiG-29s
On February 9th, The Chief of The General Staff of Serbian and Montenegrin Armed Forces, General Ljubisha Jokich, announced that the his country will definitely overhaul and modernize its five MiG-29 fighters (four single-seat MiG-29 Fulcrum-A and one two-seat MiG-29UB Fulcrum-B) in Russia.
19 FebBrazil buys 9 F-5s from Saudi Arabia
The Brazilian Air Force (FAB) will receive nine ex-Royal Saudi Arabia AF Northrop F-5 fighters. The package consists of six F-5E single-seat and three F-5F two-seat versions.
18 FebBrazil Invests More in the A-Darter AAM
The Brazilian Air Force is investing an additional US$ 100 million for the South African Short-range AAM missile A-Darter.
14 FebBulgaria to sign delayed C-27J deal
Bulgaria’s defence ministry is to sign a delayed contract for five Alenia Aeronautica C-27J Spartan tactical transports within the next few weeks, say industry sources. Sofia selected the aircraft in April 2005, and deliveries are now expected to begin during 2007. The deal includes three option aircraft.
30 JanAERO Vodochody starts work on Bulgarian L-39ZA
AERO Vodochody has launched the life extension program for 12 Bulgarian Air Force L-39ZA jet trainers, as well as the delivery of spare parts for the aircraft, under a contract signed in 2005.
24 JanBoeing Introduces New 737 SIGINT
Today, Boeing announced plans for a new signals intelligence (SIGINT) aircraft, a variant of its P-8A Multi-Mission Maritime Aircraft which is currently being developed for the U.S. Navy.
10 JanJordan Orders Four More Eurocopter EC635s
The Royal Jordanian Air Force (RJAF) placed an order for an additional four EC635 light twin-engined helicopters. Two of the new helicopters will be delivered at the end of 2006, the other two early 2007, joining the RJAF existing fleet of EC635s.

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