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Navy Starts Conventional Prompt Strike Missile Program Evidence of the growing Pentagon interest in hypersonic missiles, several exploratory programs have been shifted into engineering development over the past year. In 2019, DARPA relinquished control over the Conventional Prompt Global Strike program, with the effort transferred to the Navy’s Strategic Systems Program.
In terms of aerospace, the market for civil UAS promises to be one of the most dynamic growth sectors for the next decade, emerging from a $5 billion annual market in 2019 to almost triple to $14.5 billion by 2028. That represents a 12.5% compound annual growth rate in constant dollars. Over the next 10 years the market totals $97.6 billion.
The US Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) has been designed to operate one of three major interchangeable Mission Modules (MM) or Mission Packages (MP): Mine Countermeasures (MCM), Surface Warfare (SUW), and Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW). Mission modules include weapons and sensors launched and recovered from LCS seaframes and operated from MH-60 helicopters and Fire Scout VTUAVs.
Last year, Japan upped its order for F-35s from 42 planes to 147 (making it the biggest single export customer), it also proposed shutting down the Mitsubishi FACO (Final Assembly and Check Out) line, along, presumably, with the associated component assembly arrangements.
Teal Group’s Military Electronics Briefing covers a multitude of Raytheon’s primary airborne FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared) sensor ball systems for helicopters and slow-flying fixed wing aircraft, including UAVs. Recent updates include the AN/AAS-44 MTS/MTS-N & AAS-52 MTS-A & DAS-1/4 MTS-B & AAS-53/DAS-2 CSP Multi-spectral Targeting Systems, as well as speculative forecasts for MTS/CSP-scale Future MALE UAV EO/IR Sensors and Future Manned EO/IR Sensors
Teal’s 2019/2020 study provides forecasts for a wide range of UAV payloads, including Electro-Optical/Infrared Sensors (EO/IR), Synthetic Aperture Radars (SARs), SIGINT and EW Systems, and C4I Systems, forecast to grow in overall value from $5.5 billion in FY19 to $8.3 billion in FY28. Steady growth will occur in the “default sensor” EO/IR market, following a funding downturn in recent years as several legacy endurance UAV sensor programs ended.
The total number of rockets launched in 2018 is 112, including the three failed launches. That’s an increase of 19.6% over 2017, and it is the first time in the past quarter of a century that the number has surpassed 100. For most of the last 25 years, the number of attempted launches ranged between 55-90 annually.
In March 2019 in the US Navy’s FY20 budget, the MH-60R Seahawk Multi-Mission Maritime Helicopter was stated to be the primary ASW (Anti-Submarine Warfare) sensor in the Carrier Strike Group. But despite its crucial importance, production for the US Navy will be ending soon, and some electronics suppliers face an uncertain future. There may soon be no companies left outside the “Big Three” of Raytheon, Northrop, and Lockheed to maintain a competitive military radar market.