Air programs at a glance

A Royal Australian Air Force F/A-18F Super Hornet, F/A-18A Hornet and an A27 Hawk 127 participate in a training activity over Lake George in the ACT. Credit: Defence

The numerous major Defence acquisition projects currently underway in the Air domain are by and large on track to deliver capability against present schedules.

Innovation: Fuzzy logic for the win

RAAF Squadron Leader Andrew Jackson, F-35 Lightning II student pilot, prepares to exit his F-35A after completing his final flight at Eglin Air Force Base. Many platforms that are computing heavy could benefit from AI elements. Credit: Defence

A breakthrough in artificial intelligence is set to revolutionise aerial combat, specifically the mix of fifth generation fighters and long distance missiles which characterises modern
day air warfare.

Air-Land Integration: The evolution of Pitch Black

A Royal Thai Air Force F-16 Fighting Falcon. Pitch Black isn't just about fast jets. Credit: Nigel Pittaway

Often described as the ADF’s largest airpower exercise, the biennial Pitch Black exercise was again held in the Top End in July and August.

Airborne ISREW on the way up

Over the next decade the ADF and intelligence community will benefit
from an exponential increase in the volume
and quality of regional ISREW information.

Unmanned: Green light for armed UAS

A US Predator UAS fires a Hellfire missile. Credit: US DoD

One of the capabilities foreshadowed by the recent Defence White Paper and associated Integrated Investment Program is the acquisition of an armed Medium Altitude Long Endurance (MALE) UAS.

Air 5428 finally signed

A RAAF PC-9 together with a RSAF PC-21 near RAAF Base Pearce.

It was the contract that never seemed to end but the Commonwealth and Team 21, a joint effort of Lockheed Martin, Pilatus and Hawker Pacific, have finally signed Air 5428.

Air: Innovation & Flexibility - AMG embraces Plan Jericho

A RAAF KC-30A refuels a RAAF E-7A Wedgetail. Credit: Defence

The RAAF’s Air Mobility Group has enjoyed a busy 12 months, in which it has continued to enable and support operations in the Middle East, introduce new aircraft and roll-out an ongoing series of upgrades aimed at maximising existing capability.

Air: Underpinning operations - Air Force engineering capability

E-7A Wedgetails are less likely to operate from airfields in a contested area but require flexibility and agility to deliver the desired effect, so a military OM workforce is retained. Credit: Boeing

Most stories about Air Force capability tend to focus on either the platforms themselves, or in the case of the combat elements, the weapons they employ, but underpinning all of this capability is the engineering and maintenance system.

Air: MRH90 Taipan - reaching for 2016 milestones

Australian Army soldiers from 6th Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, disembark Army MRH-90 Taipan multi-role helicopters after completing a mission in Shoalwater Bay training area, near Rockhampton, Queensland, during Exercise Blue Dog 2. Credit: Defence

Delays in the introduction of the MRH90 Taipan multirole helicopter have triggered a second life extension for more than half the Army’s Black Hawk fleet, the last of which will now remain in service in the special operations role until 2021.

Project Review: a busy year for Air programs

The C-27J Spartan has entered service with the RAAF. Credit: Defence

The past 12 months have been a busy time for Air projects and there are further milestones ahead in 2016.

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First Australian visit by Italian Defence Minister

ITS Carabiniere during her earlier visit to Fremantle. Credit: Bahnfrend (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Roberta Pinotti met with Minister for Defence Marise Payne in Sydney yesterday to discuss Australia-Italy defence cooperation before speaking at a reception hosted by the Italian Ambassador to Australia