29th April 2016

SISPEO: simulating Scorpion

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SISPEO is the French acronym (which stands for SImulateur SPécialisé dans les Etudes d’Organisation d’équipages) for the “Specialised Simulator to Study Crew Organisation” that allows France’s armed forces to virtually test the vehicles in the Scorpion programme. FOB got a chance to see it during the pre-Eurosatory press tour this week. Set up in 2014 […]

CAESAR LoI signed with Malaysia

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Denmark, Norway, India, and now Malaysia: possible export contracts are becoming clearer for Nexter’s self-propelled gun, CAESAR. The latest success: the signature on 20 April at the DSA show in Kuala Lumpur, of a letter of intent (LoI) between the French systems manufacturer and Malaysia’s Advanced Defence Systems (ADS). Under the terms of this proposal, […]

No Scorpion without SMEs

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The Scorpion programme, considered by the French Army as its counterpart to the Navy’s “Charles de Gaulle” aircraft carrier, clearly deserved its own press trip. For three days, and at the invitation of the GICAT French land armaments industry grouping, FOB was able to discover a bit more about this programme to renew the tactical […]

French special ops air-droppable vehicle

The vehicles tried out by the US Army's 82nd Airborne Regiment last summer

France’s special operations forces will have their work made slightly easier once they get the Fardier, an air-droppable, lightweight all-terrain vehicle designed to transport all the “impedimenta”: bags, reserves of food, water and ammunition that special forces personnel today have to carry with them and which can weigh upwards of 50kg a man. It basically […]

Busy 2016 ahead for EDA

EDA is managing another 22 projects in 2016 worth a total €71m

Since its foundation 11 years ago the European Defence Agency (EDA) has received almost €1bn from its 27 member states (all European Union member states except Denmark) to manage 160 research projects. Jorge Domecq, the Agency’s executive director, told defence ministers on 19 April that in 2015 it had managed 22 new research projects worth […]

Griffin Strike, cont.

The Griffin is a mythical creature with the head, wings and fangs of an eagle and the torso, tail and hind legs of a lion; it has horse's ears

On 12th April we wrote about the Anglo-French Griffin Strike exercise that will have demonstrated when it is over that the concept of the Combined Joint Expeditionary Force (CJEF) adopted in the framework of the Lancaster House Treaties in 2010 is “validated and credible.” We were slightly ahead of the armies’ press services as we’ve […]

The art of camouflage, part 2

Invisibility technology is still in its infancy so snipers will have to make do with this kind of camouflage for quite a while yet

FOB spoke to Professor Andrea di Falco, head of the Synthetic Optics research group at Scotland’s University of St Andrews who published a paper in 2010 about these “metamaterials” which absorb or bend light and/or radar waves. “Perfect invisibility is not practically possible,” he explained. “We can reduce colours and reduce the direction of the […]

The art of camouflage, part 1

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A few days ago The Mail on Sunday, a British tabloid, announced with great excitement that “British troops have been testing an ‘invisibility cloak’ that makes them disappear on the battlefield.” Well, obviously this intrigued us at FOB so we decided to investigate. And, as often, what lies behind the headline is not quite as […]

Norwegian concerns

Admiral Haakon Bruun-Hanssen is warning that Norway can no longer defend its borders

Norway’s armed forces are not sufficiently prepared to defend their country should it be attacked. This alarming comment from Admiral Haakon Bruun-Hanssen, chief of staff of Norway’s defence forces (Forsvaret), appears in the annual report of the country’s armed forces published on 11 April. Bruun-Hanssen warns that the multiplication of missions abroad and successive international […]

New driving simulator for Spanish Army – update

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Spanish company Indra has launched international marketing of a new driving simulator for 4×4 military vehicles initially developed for the Spanish Army in 2014 to harmonise training and to try and cut down on the number of accidents and collisions. Developed as a generic cabin with multiple vehicle simulation capabilities it currently can simulate the Spanish […]