Monday, 30 September 2019

The Air Force's entire A-10 Warthog fleet is getting a raft of lethal new upgrades

US Air Force/Senior Airman Cheyenne A. Powers via

The Air Force's entire A-10 Warthog fleet is getting a raft of lethal new upgrades

JARED KELLER September 12, 2019 at 12:59 PM

Fresh off a fraught decade-long rewinging effort, the Air Force's beloved A-10 Thunderbolt II fleet is poised to keep on BRRRTing in the free world for at least another decade — and the beloved attack aircraft will pick up some tasty new upgrades along the way.

Personnel at Air Combat Command are currently working to integrate the GBU-39 Small Diameter Bomb (SDB I) on all A-10 airframes as part of the Common Fleet Initiative (CFI) that, initiated in August 2018, is designed to bring the decades-old fleet "back to a common baseline" for ongoing operations.

"GBU-39 munitions have proven to be highly-desired weapons in ongoing conflicts, and the addition of this weapon to the A-10's arsenal will greatly improve the flexibility of ground commanders," Alexi Worley, an ACC spokesman, told Task & Purpose.

"Adding the GBU-39 will continue efforts to keep the A-10 relevant in ongoing and future conflicts, where versatility in weaponeering is critical to meeting ground commander needs."

Military aviation magazine Combat Aircraft first reported news of the SDB integration on Sept. 5, noting that a new "multi-target engagement capability" will make the A-10 "theoretically ... able to target 18 weapons individually" while hauling four SDBs on a single hardpoint.

The A-10 Warthog will keep on BRRRTing in the free world for at least another decade

First introduced to Air Force inventory back in 1976, the A-10 had earned a reputation as a close air support workhorse among infantry troops for the distinctive roar of its GAU-8/A Avenger gatling gun. And while Worley said that no particular weapons were "expressly covered" in the CFI, the clear focus of the initiative is on enhancing the airframe's overall lethality.

Those enhancement include a new high-definition cockpit display that will improve the A-10's ability to find and fix targets from greater distances, jam-resistant GPS, an improved communication suite, and a three-dimensional surround-sound audio system that, according to a November 2018 request for information, will "drastically improve the spatial, battlespace, and situational awareness" for pilots.

"While Air Combat Command continually seeks new and improved weapons for all its fighter aircraft, A-10 planners and programmers are also keeping an eye out for which new weapons will prove useful to ground commanders," Worley said.

While Combat Aircraft reported that the A-10 was set to receive "a Synthetic Aperture Radar pod," Worley told Task & Purpose that ACC has "only conducted initial suitability studies and [has] not yet made a final determination."

Worley did confirm, however, that A-10 pilots are now outfitted with an improved helmet mounted Hybrid Optical-based Inertial Tracker (HObIT) site that more accurately responds pilot head movements.

The first A-10 airframes are set to receive the first batch of modifications as early as fiscal year 2020.

The A-10 Warthog Is Sticking Around for At Least Another Decade

IAI delivers 100th F-35 wing to Lockheed Martin

US Air Force

IAI delivers 100th F-35 wing to Lockheed Martin - Globes

Israel Aerospace is expected to manufacture over 800 F35 wings by 2034.

Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) (TASE: ARSP.B1) and Lockheed Martin today marked the delivery of the 100th advanced combat aircraft F-35 wing delivered by IAI at a ceremony held at the company’s wing assembly line.

The wings manufacturing center of IAI’s aviation division was established in November 2014, and benefits from a strong international reputation thanks to extensive know-how and experience in making wings for the F-16 and T-38. The center is now expected to manufacture over 800 F35 wings by 2034. On December 2018, IAI inaugurated an innovative line for production of F-35 wing skins, expanding the collaboration between the two companies.

Lockheed Martin Israel country executive Joshua Shani said, “The delivery of the 100th wing is a significant milestone for the F-35 program. We take this opportunity to mark the broad cooperation Lockheed Martin holds with the local industries as a whole and IAI in particular, who play a major role in the global F-35 program. The F-35 is the leading 5th Generation fighter jet in the world, manufactured by the highest standards along the supply chain. We look forward to deepening the fruitful, strong cooperation of today and in future programs, with both the Ministry of Defense and Israeli defense industries”.

IAI president and CEO Nimrod Sheffer said, “IAI’s collaboration with Lockheed Martin has a major business and strategic importance for us. We regard it as a vote of confidence on behalf of Lockheed Martin and the US administration in IAI’s capabilities as a global leader. We are excited to deliver the 100th wing and believe our collaboration will expand even more in the future.” The F-35 wings assembly line complies with all of Lockheed Martin’s manufacturing and quality assurance requirements. Since entering the production contract, IAI has invested multiple resources in the most advanced systems and technologies, establishing a production line characterized by utmost precision, stringent humidity and temperature control, and strict quality assurance. Among others, these measures allow the development of a unique, innovative composite part for the wings’ uppermost section.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - - on September 26, 2019

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2019

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Lockheed submits proposal to supply F-21s to Air Force; to source heavily locally if wins bid

Lockheed Martin

Lockheed submits proposal to supply F-21s to Air Force; to source heavily locally if wins bid - The Economic Times

The Air Force had sought request for information from vendors from across the world to supply 114 modern fighter planes, in a contract that is pegged at USD 18 billion.

MUMBAI: American aerospace major Lockheed Martin has submitted a proposal evincing preliminary interest to supply F-21 fighter jets to the Air Force and winning the bid may result in it working with 400 local companies, a senior official has said.

The American company, which has a decade-long partnership with the Tatas on defence manufacturing, is also working on manufacturing the wings for its F-16 fighters from their JV plant in Hyderabad from and has started work on a prototype, wh rest of article

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Air Force chooses Northrop Grumman for integrated aircraft GPS and INS system for GPS-denied environments

US Air Force

INS GPS aircraft | Military & Aerospace Electronics

EGI-M is form and fit compatible with legacy military aircraft, and adds ADS-B Out to comply with the FAA NextGen air traffic control requirements.

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. – U.S. Air Force guidance experts needed system that blends the Global Position System (GPS) satellite navigation system with inertial navigation system (INS) technology. They found their solution from the Northrop Grumman Corp. Mission Systems segment in Woodland Hills, Calif.

Officials of the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center at Robins Air Force Base, Ga., announced a $1.4 billion contract to Northrop Grumman on Friday to build and sustain the airborne Embedded Global Positioning System (GPS)/Inertial Navigation System (INS)-Modernization, or EGI-M system.

Based on a modular open-systems architecture, the EGI-M system supports the rapid insertion of new capabilities into military aircraft like the F-22 jet fighter and E-2D carrier-based radar aircraft.

EGI-M technology is designed for compatibility with legacy aircraft, and adds Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out to comply with the Federal Aviation Administration’s NextGen air traffic control requirements.

ADS-B Out transmits information about an aircraft’s altitude, speed, and location to ground stations and to other equipped aircraft in the vicinity.

The EGI-M is an upgraded version of the Northrop Grumman multiservice Embedded Global Positioning System Inertial Navigation System (EGI) system that combines GPS and inertial technologies.

The EGI, manufactured by the Honeywell Inc. Aerospace segment in Clearwater, Fla., and Northrop Grumman is a navigation system that combines a GPS receiver card with an INS in one 20-pound unit that measures 7 by 11 by 12 inches.

The navigation systems are for helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft as upgrades to existing systems or as replacements for older and less capable systems.

The EGI is an Army/Navy/Air Force program that developed a small, reliable, lightweight navigation and guidance unit that contains precise position service GPS on one standard electronic module, plus a ring laser gyro inertial navigation system.

EGI provides three navigation solutions: GPS only, inertial navigation only, or a blended GPS/INS navigation solution. The EGI system has been in production since the late 1990s.
On this contract Northrop Grumman will do the work in Woodland Hills, Calif. and Salt Lake City, and should be finished by September 2032. For more information contact Northrop Grumman Mission Systems online at, or the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center-Robins at

Air Force’s advanced trainer honors Tuskegee Airmen


Air Force’s advanced trainer honors Tuskegee Airmen - Aerospace Manufacturing and Design:

T-X advanced training aircraft has officially been named the T-7A Red Hawk.

T-7A Red Hawk with a P-51C Mustang painted in Red-Tail colors - Boeing

The U.S. Air Force has announced its name for its new advanced pilot training system: The T-7A Red Hawk.

The name is derived from the Red Tails – the Tuskegee Airmen – the first unit of African-American military pilots and support personnel who fought in World War II. They became known as the Red Tails due to the distinctive red paint on the tails of their aircraft.

Acting Secretary of the Air Force Matthew Donovan made the announcement during his speech at the 2019 Air Force Association’s Air, Space, and Cyber Conference.

Donovan was joined on stage by one of the original Tuskegee Airmen, Col. Charles McGee, who flew more than 400 combat missions in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. Also seated in the audience were members of the East Coast Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen.

“The name Red Hawk honors the legacy of Tuskegee Airmen and pays homage to their signature red-tailed aircraft from World War II,” Donovan said. “The name is also a tribute to the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk, an American fighter aircraft that first flew in 1938 and was flown by the 99th Fighter Squadron, the U.S. Army Air Forces’ first African American fighter squadron.”

The Tuskegee Airmen subsequently painted their Republic P-47 Thunderbolts and North American P-51 Mustangs with red tails.

The T-7A Red Hawk, manufactured by Boeing, introduces capabilities that prepare pilots for 5th-generation fighters, including high-G environment, information and sensor management, high angle of attack flight characteristics, night operations, and air-to-air and air-to-ground skills.

Donovan said, “The Red Hawk offers advanced capabilities for training tomorrow’s pilots on data links, simulated radar, smart weapons, defensive management systems, as well as synthetic training capabilities.”

The T-7A features twin tails, slats, and big leading-edge root extensions that offer improved low-speed handling. The aircraft’s single engine generates nearly 3x more thrust than the dual engines of the T-38C Talon it is replacing.

A $9.2 billion contract awarded to Boeing in September 2018 calls for 351 T-7A aircraft, 46 simulators, and associated ground equipment to be delivered and installed, replacing Air Education and Training Command’s 57-year-old fleet of T-38C Talons.

“We are humbled to honor the legacy of the legendary Red Tail squadrons through production of the T-7A Red Hawk,” said Steve Parker, vice president, Boeing Advanced Pilot Training System. “The T-7A and the ground-based training system demonstrate a new level of performance in flight training to prepare the pilots of tomorrow.”

The first T-7A aircraft and simulators are scheduled to arrive at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, Texas, in 2023. All undergraduate pilot training bases will eventually transition from the T-38C to the T-7A. Those bases include Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi; Laughlin AFB and Sheppard AFB, Texas; and Vance AFB, Oklahoma.

In recent months, Boeing’s T-7A program has reached significant milestones, including the first official Engineering and Manufacturing Development flight test, the aircraft’s 100th flight, and the completion of aircraft critical design review.

The T-7A Red Hawk Advanced Pilot Training System is designed to evolve as technologies, missions, and training needs change.

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More Rafale Fighters for India?

Cedric Guerre

More Rafale Fighters for India? | Defense News: Aviation International News

At a time when it prepares to formally accept its first aircraft, India appears likely to sign for a second batch of Rafales in the coming months.

A new order for a further 36 Dassault Rafale fighters will be signed in early 2020, suggests a recently published report by the Indian Defence Research Wing. Moves toward ordering a second batch were first reported in early 2017 and attributed to rising tensions with China. The new order would take India’s Rafale fleet to 72 aircraft—slightly more than half of the original 126-aircraft total outlined in the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA or MRCA) requirement, an RFP for which was issued in 2007.

An order for a second batch of Rafales would likely spell the end of U.S. efforts to sell Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornets or Lockheed Martin F-21 (F-16V) Vipers to India and could help Dassault to win a place on the team developing India’s new fifth-generation AMCA (Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft).

The Rafale was selected in 2011, beating the rival Eurofighter Typhoon on cost grounds, but after cost increases, delays, and a disagreement as to the liability for 108 Indian-assembled aircraft, the requirement for 126 aircraft was officially withdrawn on July 31, 2015. In its place, India signed a €7.8 billion contract on September 23, 2016, for just 36 French-built Rafales. The order was for 28 Rafale EH single-seaters and eight Rafale DH two-seat dual-control trainers. Delivery of the aircraft was to be completed in 67 months from the date the contract was signed, beginning in September 2019 and ending in April 2022.

The aircraft for the Indian Air Force (Bharatiya Vayu Sena, BVS) incorporate a range of India-specific enhancements, including a new weather mapping mode for the RBE-2 AESA radar, an uprated onboard oxygen generating system (OBOGS), modifications to the Sigma 95N IN/GPS to allow it to use India’s NAVIC IRNSS GPS satellites, and modifications to the M88 starter for improved operation at high-altitude airfields.

The Rafale DH and EH also have provision for the Elbit Targo-II helmet-mounted display system, the Rafael Litening G4 targeting pod, Rafael X-Guard towed radar decoys, a Rafael standby radar altimeter, an upgraded Spectra electronic warfare system, a new Thales TCAS, and quadruple launchers for the SPICE 250-based DEW EMP weapons being jointly developed by India and Israel. There is provision for a range of weapons in India’s inventory, including the BrahMos-NG supersonic cruise missile.

Only one Rafale (RB008) will be delivered with all of these enhancements, the remainder having them incorporated in-country. RB008 will be used for flight testing and certification of the additions, which are expected to be available from September 2022.

The first Rafale DH for the Indian Air Force (serial RB001) made its first flight at Bordeaux-Merignac on July 17, 2019. An official, formal handover ceremony is planned for October 8, when Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will be visiting France.

The first batch of 18 Rafales will be delivered to No. 17 Squadron, the “Golden Arrows,” based at AFS Ambala, in Haryana state. The second batch will equip No. 1 Squadron “Tigers” at AFS Hashimara in West Bengal. No. 17 Squadron previously flew the MiG-21 and disbanded at Bhatinda in 2016, before being officially reformed at Ambala on September 10 this year. No. 1 Squadron is currently equipped with Mirage 2000H/THs at AFS Gwalior/Maharajpur in Madhya Pradesh.

Raytheon, Rheinmetall Defence Form Joint Venture for U.S. Army

Raytheon, Rheinmetall Defence Form Joint Venture for U.S. Army; Sam Deneke Quoted – Executive Gov:

Raytheon Company and Rheinmetall Defence have established Raytheon Rheinmetall Land Systems LLC, a joint venture with the U.S. Army to offer the Lynx Infantry Fighting Vehicle for the Army's Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) competition, Raytheon announced on Friday.

"This advanced combat vehicle will be made in America," said Sam Deneke, vice president of Raytheon Land Warfare Systems. "Our team will produce and deliver a fighting vehicle to the U.S. Army that protects our troops and gives them an overwhelming advantage on the battlefield."

The OMFV is expected to replace the Bradley fighting vehicle. The new vehicle will be optimized for urban combat and rural terrain. The Army has named the OMFV as a top modernization priority supported under the service's Futures Command structure and is scheduled for fielding in 2026.

"Lynx will be built in America by American workers," said Ben Hudson, global head of Rheinmetall's Vehicle Systems division. "By choosing Lynx, the Army has an extraordinary opportunity to provide U.S. troops with a fighting vehicle that will enable them to outmatch the threat for decades to come."

About Raytheon

Raytheon Company, with 2018 sales of $27 billion and 67,000 employees, is a technology and innovation leader specializing in defense, civil government and cybersecurity solutions. With a history of innovation spanning 97 years, Raytheon provides state-of-the-art electronics, mission systems integration, C5I products and services, sensing, effects and mission support for customers in more than 80 countries.

About Rheinmetall

Headquartered in Düsseldorf, the publicly traded Rheinmetall AG is a high-tech enterprise dedicated to the twin modern imperatives of mobility and security. Founded in 1889, the group today consists of two operational components: Rheinmetall Defence and Rheinmetall Automotive. One of the world's leading suppliers of military systems and equipment, Rheinmetall's Defence arm comprises three divisions: Vehicle Systems, Electronic Solutions and Weapon and Ammunition. The group's 23,000-strong global workforce generated sales last year of $6.9 billion.

Sunday, 29 September 2019

Greece abandons the American F-35 in favor of the modernized Russian S-300

Greece abandons the American F-35 in favor of the modernized Russian S-300:

Translated by google

Greek authorities plan to upgrade the Russian S-300 air defense systems, which are in service with this country, to the detriment of the acquisition of fifth-generation American fighters. Negotiations on the modernization of the S-300 are already underway, which suggests that Greece has decided to abandon American combat aircraft, but at the same time maintain high security of its airspace.

“In the case of the acquisition by the Greeks of F-35 and the admission of Russian specialists to the S-300 modernization process, there may be a situation where it is necessary to enter data on American fighters in the recognition systems of Russian-made radars. In the USA, they are afraid that these data “Russians will be able to count - abduct.” If Russia has access to the process of modernizing the S-300 in Greece, this country will leave the list of those who were going to put the F-35 - by analogy with the Turkish partners in NATO , ”the Military Review publication reports.

According to analysts, in reality, given the difficult economic situation in the country, the acquisition of F-35 fighters will only hit the budget of this state, but will not provide decent protection, while the modernization of S-300 systems will increase security from Turkey itself. in service with Greece, the Russian S-300s are today the most long-range air defense systems in this country.

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Israel ridiculed the American "Patriot" and recommended everyone to buy "Panstir-S"


Israel ridiculed the American "Patriot" and recommended everyone to buy "Shell-S"

Translated by google

In Israel, they spoke about the significant superiority of the Russian Panstir-S missile defense system over the American Patriot.

Despite the fact that the Israeli army was able to successfully destroy at least two Pantsir-S air defense missile systems in Syria, the former head of the Israeli missile defense organization, Uzi Rubin, recommended that Saudi Arabia rather abandon the American Patriot missile defense systems in favor of the Russian Pantsir air defense system -FROM".

Uzi Rubin emphasized that such a problem as drones and cruise missiles could well be addressed by the Russian Pantsir-S air defense missile system, and as for the American Patriot missile defense system, with such a large area of ​​Saudi Arabia, it is absolutely unpromising.

According to experts, with the comparatively high efficiency of the Russian Pantsir-S air defense missile systems, only 2-3 dozen combat vehicles could easily close the airspace over the country, while the contract would be no more than 200-300 million dollars.

Moreover, analysts draw attention to the fact that in cases with the destruction of two Pantsir-S air defense systems, Israeli electronic warfare systems were used, and in one of the cases the complex was not activated at all.

Putin trolls US by offering S-400 to Saudi Arabia after Houthi attack

Army testing modernized UH-60V Black Hawk digital cockpit

Senior Airman Patrick Evenson

Army testing modernized UH-60V Black Hawk digital cockpit | Article | The United States Army

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- Combat aviators are conducting operational tests of Army modernization efforts using three UH-60V Black Hawk helicopters.

(Photo Credit: Mr. Tad Browning, Audiovisual Production Specialist, Test Documentation Team, U.S. Army Operational Test Command)

(Photo Credit: Mr. Tad Browning, Audiovisual Production Specialist, Test Documentation Team, U.S. Army Operational Test Command)

The UH-60V Black Hawk will retrofit the Army's remaining UH-60L helicopter fleet's analog cockpits with a digital cockpit, similar to the UH-60M helicopter.

Retrofitting aircraft that are already owned by the Army is a major cost saving measure over purchasing new builds, according to Mr. Derek Muller, UH-60V IOT Test Officer, with the West Fort Hood, Texas-based U.S. Army Operational Test Command's Aviation Test Directorate.

Muller and his test team worked with aircrews from Company A, 2nd Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment, 16th Combat Aviation Brigade by applying realistic operational missions, post-mission surveys and after action reviews along with onboard video and audio instrumentation to collect data directly from crewmembers.

Testing will continue through Friday.

Instrumentation installed by Redstone Test Center (RTC), Alabama provided audio, video and position data for test team to review after each mission.

"The OTC/RTC partnership has been paramount to the successful testing and evaluation of the UH-60V," said Muller.

"The data collected during the test will support an independent evaluation by the U.S. Army Evaluation Center," he added.

The evaluation will inform a full-rate production decision from the Utility Helicopter Program Office at Redstone Arsenal, Alabama.

Aircrews flew over 120 hours under realistic battlefield conditions.

They conducted air movement, air assault, external load and casualty evacuation missions under day, night, night-vision goggle, and simulated instrument meteorological modes of flight.

"Anti-aircraft weapon simulation emitters are a valuable training enabler and reinforce much of the Air Mission Survivability training assault aircrews have received with respect to operations in a threat environment," said Capt. Scott Amarucci, A Co. 2-158 Company Commander.

"This approach permitted evaluators from the U.S. Army Evaluation Center to see and hear how a unit equipped with the UH-60V performed operational missions against a validated threat in a representative combat environment," said Muller.

"The operational environment designed by USAOTC and 16th CAB helped evaluators accurately assess the company's ability to complete doctrinal missions, when equipped with the UH-60V," said Mr. Brian Apgar, Plans Deputy Division Chief of USAOTC AVTD.

The U.S. Army Center for Countermeasures employed three types of threat simulations to stimulate the aircraft's survivability equipment and trigger pilot actions using the updated cockpit capabilities.

"The three independent threat simulation systems enhanced the quality of the test and enriched the combat-like environment," said Muller.

"2-158th aircrews reacted to threat systems they rarely have the opportunity to encounter," said Chief Warrant Officer 4 Toby Blackmon, Test Operations Officer in Charge, USAOTC AVTD.

"Using Blue Force Tracking, the test operations cell and Battalion Operations Center tracked and communicated with crews during missions," he said.

"Each day I hear feedback from the crews about the testing," said Lt. Col. Christopher Clyde, 2-158 BN Commander. "Each Soldier I talk to is glad to place a fingerprint on a future Army Aviation program."

Aircrews executed their Mission Essential Task Lists using the UH-60V conducting realistic missions against accredited threat systems.

"The UH-60V training has allowed excellent opportunities to train important tasks which enable our proficiency as assault aviation professionals," added Amarucci.

Testing at A Co.'s home station allowed the application of key expertise and resources, provided by the test team, while flying in its routine training environment.

New equipment collective training and operational testing caused A Co. to focus on several critical areas, including mission planning, secure communications, aircraft survivability equipment, and internal/external load operations, improving its overall mission readiness while meeting operational test requirements, according to Muller.

"Moreover," Muller said, "the test's rigorous operational tempo provided an ideal opportunity for 2-158th Aviation Regiment to exercise key army battle command systems including, but not limited to, Blue Force Tracker (BFT), secure tactical communications, and mission planning."

Ground crews from the 1-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT) prepared and hooked up sling loads during 18 missions, allowing pilots to see how the UH-60V cockpit displays provided situational awareness while carrying an external load.

"Static load and external load training not only improved unit readiness, but fostered safe operations during day and night missions throughout the test," said Sgt. 1st Class Jason Keefer, AVTD's Test Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge.

Future operational testing will ensure Soldiers continue to have a voice in the acquisition process, guaranteeing a quality product prior to fielding.


About the U.S. Army Operational Test Command:

Operational testing began Oct. 1, 1969, and as the Army's only independent operational tester, OTC is celebrating "50 Years of Operational Testing." The unit tests Army, joint, and multi-service warfighting systems in realistic operational environments, using typical Soldiers to determine whether the systems are effective, suitable, and survivable. OTC is required by public law to test major systems before they are fielded to its ultimate customer -- the American Soldier.

The Aviation Test Directorate at West Fort Hood, Texas, plans and conducts operational tests and reports on manned and unmanned aviation-related equipment to include attack, reconnaissance, cargo and lift helicopters, fixed wing aircraft, tactical trainers, ground support equipment, and aviation countermeasure systems.

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UH-60M: Details