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[*] posted on 6-6-2017 at 08:28 PM
Australian Defence Capability and Strategic Matters


Australia, Singapore sign cybersecurity MOU

Zachary Fryer-Biggs - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

06 June 2017

Australia and Singapore have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) meant to aid information sharing and lead to joint exercises for cybersecurity, the countries announced on 2 June. The agreement was signed during a summit between leaders of the two countries and is intended to last two years.

For Singapore, the co-operation will be managed by Cyber Security Agency of Singapore (CSA), with this marking the sixth such agreement signed by the agency with a foreign government. France, India, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, and the United States had previously signed agreements.

During the two years, information on cybersecurity threats – particularly tied to critical infrastructure – will be shared by the two countries, in addition to joint training and exercises slated to help improve both countries’ cyber expertise being held.

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[*] posted on 20-6-2017 at 12:32 PM


A$500 Million for Enhanced Satellite Capability

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued June 17, 2017)

The Turnbull Government has announced a $500 million investment to improve Australia’s space-based intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities, to support ADF operations around the world and at home to secure our borders.

Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP and Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne today committed $500 million to improve Defence’s access to commercial satellites to provide information to government agencies.

This information will be used to support Australia’s defence priorities including defence operations, border protection and humanitarian missions.

Minister Payne said that Defence Project 799 was introduced in the 2016 Defence White Paper to enhance Australia’s geospatial-intelligence capabilities.

Phase 1 of the project will provide Australia with direct and more timely access to commercial imaging satellites to support a wide range of Defence and national security activities.

“Defence’s enhanced access to these satellites will increase Australia’s capacity to maintain surveillance and improve situational awareness for the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and other national security agencies through the provision of high-quality imagery,” Minister Payne said.

“This means imagery from high-end commercial satellites, now in orbit, will be integrated directly into the Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation’s imagery dissemination systems, reducing the time it will take for satellite imagery to get to a member of the ADF or the officers of Australia’s national security agencies.”

Minister Pyne said these contracting arrangements will provide improved value for money for the Australian Government when accessing commercial imagery.

The investment will immediately create 22 new jobs in Defence and industry across Australia in direct support of the establishment and maintenance of the capability, with many others created in the supply chain as the project matures.

“The Turnbull Government is committed to maximising Australian Industry content, with this project forecasting over $144 million to be spent in Australia, creating jobs and generating economic growth.”

“Australian industry will benefit with around $14 million spent locally to build the ground infrastructure to collect imagery from commercial satellites”, Minister Pyne said.

A total of $130 million will be spent on support contracts over the 13 year life of the project providing commercial opportunities for Australian companies - including in the Northern Territory and South Australia.

This investment will also create opportunities for Australian companies interested in satellite technology and imagery analysis.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 28-6-2017 at 03:59 PM


ADFHQ Standing Up 01 July

(Source: Australian Army; issued June 27, 2017)

THE new ADF Headquarters structure will be fully implemented on July 1 as an important outcome of the First Principles Review.

The ADFHQ’s establishment relates to the First Principles Review’s intent that Defence operate as one integrated system, called the One Defence approach. Its main aim is to bring about the four Cs – a coordinated, coherent, comprehensive capability.

It capitalises on legislative changes recommended in the FPR that have made clear CDF’s position as commander of the ADF, as well as greater clarity for One Defence roles more broadly.

“If we have a more concept-led and integrated approach to delivering capability, over time our units will experience less of the issues we have had in the past,” AVM Hart said. “Issues such as equipment turning up that isn’t fully compatible or interoperable with our networks, or with the other services or groups. There has been a lot of effort in the past on workarounds in the field, and a kind of retro-fitting of joint capabilities.”

The key change in terms of operating, exercising and preparing new capabilities is they will arrive as comprehensive packages. This will be done through One Defence’s Capability Life-Cycle approach, which covers everything from planning to maintaining Defence capability. This process will also consider requirements for equipment to be integrated and interoperable parts of the joint force.

“This will allow units to spend more of their early effort during the introduction to service on training and tactics development, rather than so much effort being spent just on making the system work and integrating or developing workarounds,” AVM Hart said. AVM Hart uses the analogy of buying a new phone to explain what he hopes the new ADFHQ will avoid.

In explaining what the new headquarters will look like, AVM Hart cited the evolution of HQJOC as a model, and as a great success story of ‘jointery’. “In directing the development of the ADFHQ model, CDF often pointed to the joint approach to planning and teamwork at HQJOC,” he said.

“HQJOC has evolved significantly over the last 15 years or so, moving us from stove-piped service planning, to the integrated approach to joint planning and operations we now have.

“The arrangements at JOC put us in a fantastic place operationally, as a result of being an integrated entity that is not just joint, but also better supports us working with our friends and partners from across government, such as AFP, Border Protection and Foreign Affairs, and in coalitions.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 29-6-2017 at 08:34 PM


Australia ready to roll out new tender template

Jon Grevatt - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

29 June 2017

Key Points

- New procurement template intended to boost local involvement
- Exporters will face greater demands to demonstrate commitment

Australia's Department of Defence (DoD) has announced the expansion of a procurement method through which it aims to bolster Australian industrial involvement in major acquisitions.

Announcing the move on 29 June, Australia's Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne said the template will be framed around the Australian Industry Capability (AIC) scheme, the mechanism through which foreign defence contractors are committed to engaging with local companies, particularly small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Pyne said the new 'AIC plan template' has already been used in request for tender (RFT) processes supporting Royal Australian Navy programmes to procure offshore patrol vessels under project SEA 1180 Phase 1 and Future Frigates under project SEA 5000.

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[*] posted on 29-6-2017 at 09:53 PM


All new bids must outline in full detail how they are going to (exclusively) help Christopher Pyne's re-election chances...



In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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Mood: Resignedly Sceptical

[*] posted on 30-6-2017 at 01:48 PM


Cynical, excrutiatingly honest, but cynical.

I like it :thumbup:




It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
It is by the juice of sapho that thoughts acquire speed,
the lips acquire stains,
the stains become a warning.
It is by will alone I set my mind in motion
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[*] posted on 5-7-2017 at 11:12 AM


ADF to receive CBRN equipment worth USD230 million

Gabriel Dominguez, London - IHS Jane's Defence Weekly

03 July 2017

As part of Project LAND 2110 Phase 1B the Australian Defence Force (ADF) will receive equipment worth AUD300 million (USD230 million) for protection against chemical/biological/radiological/nuclear (CBRN) threats, the Department of Defence (DoD) in Canberra announced on 3 July.

The equipment will include detectors, suits, masks, protection tents, decontamination systems, containers for contaminated equipment, warning and reporting software and simulation systems, said Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne and Minister for Defence Marise Payne in a joint statement.

"The new equipment enhances the Australian Defence Force's ability to detect, identify, monitor and warn others of CBRN hazards, protect personnel from exposure and decontaminate affected personnel and equipment safely," said Payne.

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[*] posted on 13-7-2017 at 11:37 PM


Australia urged to improve sustainment of military equipment

Jon Grevatt - IHS Jane's Defence Industry

13 July 2017

Key Points
- Australian audit office points to shortcomings in management of equipment support
- Improvements needed to support expected increased investment in support activities, it says

The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) has called upon the Department of Defence (DoD) to improve its monitoring, reporting and evaluation processes to support more efficient and effective sustainment of military equipment operated by the Australian Defence Force (ADF).

In a report published on 11 July, the ANAO said the DoD’s governance and organisational framework for managing materiel sustainment is “fit for purpose”. However, the report pointed to shortcomings in the system and said there remains scope for improvements to “better support the management and external scrutiny of materiel sustainment”.

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[*] posted on 21-7-2017 at 01:23 PM


Cutting-Edge Data Centre Installed In the Middle East

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued July 20, 2017)

The latest piece of equipment for the Middle East region (MER) Communications and Information System (CIS) Upgrade Program has arrived at Australia’s main operating base in the Middle East.

The start of the Containerised Data Centre’s (CDC) construction marks another key milestone in Force Installation Team 31’s (FIT 31) progress refitting Australia’s CIS systems in the MER.

The CDC is a state-of-the-art deployable, modular data storage and processing facility, designed by Datapod, an Australian company specialising in CIS facilities built for harsh environments.

FIT 31 Team Leader Captain (CAPT) Ryan Pitt said the CDC formed one of the key pillars of the project at Camp Baird, Australia’s main operating base in the region.

“The CDC is a modular data centre which enables infrastructure support as a precursor to the delivery of the Enhanced Deployable Local Area Network (EDLAN),” he said.

“It’s all part of the MER CIS Upgrade Program, which will deliver a bespoke network throughout the MER. It’s like a tree with its roots spreading out.”

Despite being modular, the site for CDC installation has been subject to extensive preparatory work carried out by the JTF633 Engineer Support Element (ESE) alongside FIT 31.

“This can only be done with the support from a number of enabling agencies, and will see the JTF633 personnel across the MER utilising a brand new infrastructure, which runs out of this high-speed data centre,” CAPT Pitt said.

The network design and development has been coordinated by the MER CIS Upgrade Program Management Office (PMO), in conjunction with Thales, CASG’s Joint Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence Systems Project Office (JC4ISPO) and a number of other agencies.

“The PMO has worked hand-in-hand with personnel from the Defence Communications Master Station Australia and the greater CIOG organisation for strategic support to the Wide and Base Area Network,” CAPT Pitt said.

“To procure all of the EDLAN equipment, they also worked extensively with JC4ISPO and Thales.

“Throughout the whole program we have been liaising with the Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC) Signals Branch and the Head of ICT Operations (HICTO) to ensure everything is on track.”

Building a custom-designed facility which can be transported by either air or sea offers its own advantages over a traditional fixed data centre, but presents its own challenges as well.

The data centre is able to be moved by tactical aircraft, like a C-17 Globemaster, so everything in the containers needed to be reinforced to prevent movement during flight.

“Getting the certification for air transportability was a huge effort for us,” Datapod’s Services Manager for the project, Richard Blundell, said.

“This is the first build we have flown, so we had to remove all of the cabling and brace all of the cabinets before it went on the plane,” Mr Blundell said.

“Once you put some fairly heavy cabinets and uninterruptible power supplies in a container, any movement can cause some significant damage.

“We used a fairly substantial amount of steel framing to make sure everything was braced inside of the container.”

The multi-million dollar CDC project has not only taken Datapod outside of Australia for the first time, but according to Mr Blundell, presents “a huge opportunity for an Australian business”.

“For an Australian company to get a gig like this with Defence is huge,” he said.

“It’s not the first project we’ve done for Defence and I think they’ve seen that we are a company who can get in and get the job done as the requirements dictate.

“We’re pretty adaptive and agile in the way we get things done, so if there are slight modifications which need to be made, we’ll take them on board and use them to develop our product for other clients.”

For the CDC project, there was 95 tonnes of equipment flown into the Middle East.

According to CAPT Pitt, that amount of equipment would have taken more than 10 C-17 Globemasters to move into theatre.

So why not use something a bit bigger? “The Antonov 124 is one of the largest aircraft in the world, second only to the Antonov 225,” CAPT Pitt said.

“HQJOC, the PMO and JC4ISPO, along with the Middle East Joint Movements Control Office, worked an absolute wonder to get that plane on board for the project.

“They managed to fit the entire load of equipment onto it.”

Senior Program representatives, including HICTO, were on site at Australia’s main operating base in the MER to witness the early stages of CDC build and meet with members of the specialist installation team.

“Through speaking with both local commanders and FIT 31 members throughout the visit, representatives of a number of stakeholders were provided with a comprehensive update of the operational challenges of the project.

At the completion of the CDC, FIT 31 will move onto setting up the Deployable KU/X Band Earth Terminal satellites at Camp Baird, as well as conduct a number of installations across the MER.

The new satellite terminals make use of Australia’s investment in the WGS constellation.

Each of the dishes being installed at Camp Baird measure 6.3m across, larger than any other deployable satellite currently in use within Defence.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 9-8-2017 at 02:32 PM


New findings on suicide prevention

Published on 08 August 2017 Department of Defence (author), LSIS Bradley Darvill (photographer)


HMAS Ballarat in company with the Royal Canadian Navy ships HMCS Ottawa and Winnipeg conduct Officer of the Watch manoeuvres during HMAS Ballarat's South East Asia Deployment.

A report on suicide issued on 30 June, has revealed that Defence personnel serving full-time or in the Reserves are far less likely to take their own lives compared to the general population.
 
In recent years there has been concern expressed about suicide among serving and ex-serving members of the Australian Defence Force, and public criticism about the inability to accurately report on the incidence of suicide once members have left the service.
 
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare conducted the study to give Defence and Department of Veterans’ Affairs a full picture on suicide among service and ex-serving Defence members.
 
Commander Joint Health Air Vice Marshal Tracy Smart said the report’s findings were positive.
 
“The findings from this report help to confirm what we have suspected for some time, that protective factors put in place by Defence are working to reduce the risk of suicide among current serving members of the Australian Defence Force,” Air Vice Marshal Smart said .
 
The study found there were 325 confirmed suicides of serving and former personnel between 2001 and 2015.
 
As only seven per cent of suicides were made up of women, the report only had enough data to focus on men.
 
The suicide rates were shown to be 53 per cent lower for men serving full-time and 49 per cent lower for Reservist men when compared with all Australian men, and after adjusting for age.
 
“This data really says a lot for the systems we’ve got in place across Defence; in terms of command and welfare systems, our suicide-prevention initiatives and the access to quality healthcare that is available to all Defencemembers,” Air Vice Marshal Smart said.
 
Unique stressors are associated with military life, and a range of programs have been implemented by Defence in recent years aimed at building resilience, improving awareness of suicide prevention, addressing the stigma felt by Defence members, and encouraging them to seek help as early as possible.
 
However, the study also indicates that once members leave Defence and these protective factors are reduced, they can become more vulnerable.
 
The suicide rates of ex-serving men were more than twice as high as for those serving full-time or in the Reserves.
 
They were also 14 per cent higher than their counterparts in the general population.
 
Young ex-serving men aged 18 to 29 were shown to be at particular risk.
 
They were twice as likely to die from suicide than Australian men of the same age.
 
In addition, the institute found certain service characteristics – such as involuntary discharge, particularly if discharged for medical reasons, or leaving the Defence Force with less than one year of service – were associated with higher suicide rates among ex-serving men.
 
There was very little difference between those who had operational service and those who did not.
 
These results highlight the importance of the transition process out of Defence, and emphasises the need to focus on improving support for individuals leaving Defence.
 
“The media and public opinion in recent years has tended to focus on the impact of service in Afghanistan, or experience of PTSD, as the main reasons for people taking their own lives,” Air Vice Marshal Smart said.
 
“But this data shows that’s not the full picture.
 
“As important as it is that we pay attention to those who have operational service, it now appears that some of those most at risk may be people leaving Defence very early, or they have had their careers cut short, and that’s quite a different story.
 
“We might find people aren’t temperamentally suited to being in Defence but all their lives they’ve wanted to be a soldier.
 
“They could still be in a training establishment and are being discharged for a physical reason; that could be a loss of their identity and who they wanted to be.”
 
This research provides Defence and Veterans’ Affairs with strong evidence to better target their efforts to those most at risk.
 
It will be used to inform not only suicide-prevention projects already underway, but also the development of future policy and services to support serving and ex-serving Defence personnel.
 
Air Vice Marshal Smart said it was also important to get the message out to people to seek help as early as possible for any mental health concerns, particularly if they or someone they knew was experiencing thoughts of suicide.
 
“Defence has a wide range of mental health services available for current Defence members,” Air Vice Marshal Smart said.
 
“This is enhanced by the range of services and initiatives available through Veterans’ Affairs.
 
“So for anyone who has served a single day in the Defence Force they can now access unlimited mental health services for any mental health condition through the non-liability healthcare arrangements with Veterans’ Affairs.”
 
With a new Defence Mental Health and Wellbeing Strategy due for release in October, Air Vice Marshal Smart said Defence would not become complacent about the issue.
 
“We have a much lower suicide rate but we can’t rest on our laurels,” she said.
 
“Suicide is just one measure. We want to have an operationally fit and ready force, so the earlier we can intervene, the more chance we’re going to keep these valuable people.”
 
If you or someone you know is troubled by thoughts of suicide or self-harm you can seek help in emergency situations by calling 000.
 
Defence members are also encouraged to visit the Wellbeing portal on the Defence

website: http://www.defence.gov.au/Health/HealthPortal/
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[*] posted on 19-8-2017 at 01:01 PM


Projects of Concern Update

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Aug 18, 2017)

Project AIR 5431 Phase 1 Deployable Defence Air Traffic Management and Control System and Project AIR 5431 Phase 3 Civil Military Air Traffic Management System have been added to the Projects of Concern list.

Although the projects are under the same program, there is no dependency between the two and their inclusion on the Projects of Concern list is unrelated.

AIR 5431 Phase 1 was awarded to Indra Australia in 2014 to deliver a mix of mobile and transportable air traffic control radars and supporting equipment to allow Defence to control and monitor air traffic while deployed on operations.

The project has experienced schedule delays since approval, and initial delivery is expected almost two years later than originally planned.

AIR 5431 Phase 3 was approved in 2014, to deliver the Defence aspects of a harmonised civil/military air traffic management system under the OneSKY banner—collectively being led and managed by AirServices Australia.

This is a highly complex, inter-departmental project of national significance that has experienced some substantial challenges getting into contract. The challenges revolve around issues with ensuring value for money for the taxpayer.

The Projects of Concern process has delivered proven results through the remediation of 17 troubled projects with a combined value of around $17 billion.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 30-8-2017 at 01:48 PM


Trump eyes admiral for Aust ambassador

AAP

Peter Mitchell



© TORU HANAI/AFP/Getty Images Admiral Harry Harris, head of the US Pacific Command, is reportedly being considered for the post of the next ambassador to Australia.

US President Donald Trump is considering naming America's top military commander in the Pacific, Admiral Harry Harris, as US Ambassador to Australia.

The coveted position in Canberra is one of many diplomatic posts across the world Mr Trump has failed to fill despite moving into the White House seven months ago.

The Washington Post, citing US officials, reported on Tuesday the Australian government "is growing more and more concerned that President Trump has yet to appoint an ambassador there".

Admiral Harris, head of the US Pacific Command and heavily involved in dealing with China and North Korea, has a strong relationship with Australia.

He appears well credentialed to be the conduit between Australia, traditionally one of America's closest allies, and Mr Trump who has had tense relations with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull over the controversial asylum seeker deal.

Mr Turnbull met with Admiral Harris in New York on May 4.

Later that night Admiral Harris spoke glowingly of Australia at an event attended by Mr Trump, Mr Turnbull and other dignitaries to honour the 75th anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea.

Admiral Harris still has a year to go on his three-year tour.

"Admiral Harris is a frequent visitor to Australia," Andrew Shearer, senior adviser on Asia-Pacific security at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, told the Post.

"He's well-known to Australians, highly respected.

"I'm sure his appointment would be welcomed by both sides of politics.

"He's a straight talking, engaging kind of bloke and that's how Australians like it."

Mr Trump's former chief-of-staff Reince Priebus favoured Trump fundraiser and alleged slum lord Rod Gidwitz for the post, officials said according to the Post.

Admiral Harris has openly challenged China's island building in the South China Sea.

China reportedly requested Mr Trump remove Admiral Harris as PACOM commander.
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[*] posted on 1-9-2017 at 03:40 PM


Strengthening Opportunities for Local Industry

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Aug 31, 2017)

Local industry will have more opportunities to participate in major Defence infrastructure projects as part of a pilot program announced by Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, today.

The Local Industry Capability Plan pilot will ensure that local industry has the best possible opportunity to be involved in the Turnbull Government’s unprecedented $200 billion investment in Defence capability over the next decade, including approximately $7.7 billion to upgrade Defence facilities in the Northern Territory.

The pilot projects will require tenderers bidding for major capital facilities projects to state clearly how they have engaged with local industry in providing their tendered solution, and how local industry will specifically be involved in delivering the work packages that underpin the project.

The pilot program was discussed with industry and business leaders in Darwin during a productive meeting today, Minister Payne said.

“I have recognised both the contribution local companies make to our defence capability and that we can, and should, do more to maximise those opportunities,” Minister Payne said.

The framework will be piloted by three projects that will go to market in the next few months:

-- The Explosive Ordnance Logistics Reform Program, an around $230 million project covering 12 defence sites;
-- The Shoalwater Bay Training Area Redevelopment, an around $135 million substantial infrastructure upgrade project; and
-- The Townsville Field Training Area Mid-Term Refresh, an around $24 million project to ensure the Training Area is fit for purpose, safe and environmentally compliant.

“This is fundamentally about ensuring that local companies in the vicinity of our Defence bases, facilities and training areas are properly considered and provided the opportunity to compete and win work,” Minister Payne said.

The pilot projects will inform the development of a Defence Industry Participation Policy the Minister for Defence will release in the first half of 2018. The Policy will provide a more consistent approach to maximising Australian and local industry involvement in Defence procurement of $4 million and above, recognising that Defence procures a range of different equipment, services, and support across many sectors of the Australian economy.

“I will consider further major capital facilities pilot projects while the Policy is being developed,” Minister Payne said.

Another initiative the Government will be undertaking to maximise local industry involvement is to change the way that Managing Contractors sub-contract.

“At present, the typical arrangements are for sub-contracts to be based on ‘trade packages’. Defence has considered feedback from Northern Territory enterprises and will instead trial the use of smaller ‘work packages’ for the upcoming Larrakeyah Redevelopment and Naval Operations in the North projects,” Minister Payne said.

Under this approach, buildings or work elements may be tendered separately, rather than by individual trade. It is expected that this initiative will provide greater opportunity to local industry in the Northern Territory.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 12-9-2017 at 06:32 PM


Joint Standing Committee on the National Capital and External Territories

The strategic importance of Australia's Indian Ocean Territories

August 2017

http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Join...
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[*] posted on 21-9-2017 at 03:37 PM


Investment Priorities for the Defence Innovation Hub

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Sept 20, 2017)

Minister for Defence Industry, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP today announced the Government’s investment priorities for the Defence Innovation Hub for the coming year.

Minister Pyne said the Government invested $1.6 billion into defence industry and innovation over the next decade, including $640 million to support the development of innovative technologies through the Defence Innovation Hub.

“The Defence Innovation Hub was established as a robust program to facilitate and explore the development of leading-edge technology and ideas in support of Defence capability,” Minister Pyne said.

“Research and development (R&D) fuels innovation, so understanding our investment priorities up front will allow industry and research organisations to plan their R&D investments accordingly.

Since its launch in December 2016, the Defence Innovation Hub has seen a positive response from industry to the existing capability priorities which have been reconfirmed by Defence’s Force Gaps and Opportunities Analysis.

In the 2017–18 financial year, the Defence Innovation Hub will seek proposals aligned with the six capability streams identified in the Defence Integrated Investment Program:
-- intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, electronic warfare, space and cyber
-- key enablers
-- air and sea lift
-- maritime and anti-submarine warfare
-- strike and air combat
-- land combat and amphibious warfare

Within these six capability streams, the top three priorities for investment in the 2017–18 financial year in priority order are:

-- Priority 1: Intelligence, Surveillance, Reconnaissance, Electronic Warfare, Space and Cyber
These capabilities are critical to maintaining the Australian Defence Force’s decision-making superiority and ability to conduct operations safely and effectively.

In 2017–18, there will be an increased focus on ISREW enabling joint decision support, cyber and joint capability edge.

-- Priority 2: Key Enablers
Key enabling capabilities include critical infrastructure (such as bases, training ranges, ports and airfields), information and communications technology, logistics, science and technology, health services, and future energy resilience (including national and Defence fuel management).

Defence is seeking innovative proposals for new technologies, improved methods or practices, and better ways of integrating systems to strengthen these enabling capabilities.

In 2017–18, key enablers adds a focus on autonomous identification technologies.

-- Priority 3: Land Combat and Amphibious Warfare
Land forces require the mobility, firepower, protection and situational awareness capabilities to deploy quickly, achieve their objectives, and return home safely. Defence is seeking innovative submissions for leading-edge equipment to bolster our land forces in these capability areas, including amphibious warfare.

In 2017–18, land combat and amphibious warfare will add an increased focus on special operations capabilities.

The Defence Innovation Hub complements the Next Generation Technologies Fund as the two core initiatives of the new Defence Innovation System outlined in the Government’s Defence Industry Policy Statement.

These two signature innovation research and development programs, together with the Centre for Defence Industry Capability, deliver on the Government‘s $1.6 billion commitment to grow Australia's defence industry and innovation sector.

-ends-
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 01:35 PM


Watching the National Press Club speech now with Hugh White and Michael Keating.

Apparently the new subs are too risky, extravagantly expensive and might leave us without any sub capability for a decade.

So their plan is to buy 6 new Scorpene submarines right now, forgoe the Collins life-extension and any planned upgrades and then contract ‘Germany’ and France (presumably they mean ThyssenKrupp and DCNS but who the hell knows?) to design a new submarine, maybe even nuclear powered from scratch...

Oh and they want the RAN to buy a submarine tender to alleve the range issues for Scorpene...

Apparently this will be cheaper and in-service sooner with no capability gap for the RAN... Will link in the Insight Economics report when it goes up on the site, they reference...




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 01:45 PM


The report is up here:

http://www.insighteconomics.com.au/reports/2017_Insight_Econ...

So yep Hugh White garbage at it’s worst. A life extension for Collins will allegedly cost $15b, new Scorpenes only $750m - $1b each, in their opinion.

Shortfin Barracuda is likely to have development problems, Scorpene is all good now (ignoring every Scorpene program in the world has massive development issues).

They also want all capability investment decisions removed from defence...





In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 02:08 PM


Mindless twaddle in extreme.............I've thought for a long time that Hugh White has wandered off with the fairies, this just goes to show he's leading the fantasists!
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 02:28 PM


Quote: Originally posted by bug2  
Mindless twaddle in extreme.............I've thought for a long time that Hugh White has wandered off with the fairies, this just goes to show he's leading the fantasists!


So this is the dude behind all this - Gary Johnston. Apparently he owns the Jaycar chain across Australia.

This is his website:

http://www.submarinesforaustralia.com.au

These guys are even more delusional than Air Power Australia... At least Goon was (once) a US Navy qualifiied Flight Test Engineer. This is coming from a guy who sells cheap arse civilian electronics...

The idiots just mentioned in the Q&A they have costed their 6x Scorpene plan based on Wikipedia article listed costs... :lol:




In a low speed post-merge manoeuvring fight, with a high off-boresight 4th generation missile and Helmet Mounted Display, the Super Hornet will be a very difficult opponent for any current Russian fighter, even the Su-27/30
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 04:46 PM


Morons..............:no: :no: :no:
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[*] posted on 27-9-2017 at 08:36 PM


There are not one, but two articles about this in The Australian! WTF happened to that newspaper? It seems to have really gone downhill over the past 12 months or so.



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[*] posted on 28-9-2017 at 10:56 AM


We are all talking about it and sending eyeballs their way – bitching and moaning counts – so mission accomplished.

They'll probably line up a couple of counterarguments next week and pat themselves on the back for being balanced. No matter that more than half of the knuckleheads that read the first article (or the headline) will miss that much more boring article.
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[*] posted on 13-10-2017 at 08:53 PM


F-35 data stolen in Australian hack...but no classified info

By: Valerie Insinna   11 hours ago


Two Lockheed Martin Corp F-35 stealth fighter jets flies during a display at the Avalon Airshow in Victoria, Australia, March 3, 2017. (Australian Defence Force via Reuters)

WASHINGTON — The 2016 hacking of an Australian company, which resulted in the theft of data from military programs like the F-35 and P-8 surveillance aircraft, did not compromise any classified information linked to the joint strike fighter, the F-35 program office has confirmed.

“The F-35 Joint Program Office is aware of this supplier cyber breach that compromised non-classified data in the summer of 2016,” Joe DellaVedova, spokesman for the F-35 joint program office, told Defense News. “No classified F-35 information was compromised.”

During an interview with Australian Broadcasting Corporation radio cited by Reuters, Christopher Pyne, Australia’s minister for defense industry, confirmed that about 30 gigabytes of data had been stolen during the attack, and said that the Australian government still does not know who the attacker was.

The intrusion was first reported by technology news site ZDNet on Wednesday, which cited the recently released the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s 2017 threat report.

“In November 2016, the ACSC became aware that a malicious cyber adversary had successfully compromised the network of a small Australian company with contracting links to national security projects,” the ACSC stated in the report. “ACSC analysis confirmed that the adversary had sustained access to the network for an extended period of time and had stolen a significant amount of data.”

“Analysis showed that the adversary gained access to the victim network by exploiting an internet-facing server, then using administrative credentials to move laterally within the network, where they were able to install multiple webshells — a script that can be uploaded to a webserver to enable remote administration of the machine — throughout the network to gain and maintain further access,” the report continued.

Other defense products impacted by the hack include the C-130 Hercules transport plane, the Joint Direct Attack Munition and several unnamed Australian naval vessels, ZDNet stated.
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[*] posted on 28-11-2017 at 03:38 PM


Successful Launch of Australian Satellite

(Source: Australian Department of Defence; issued Nov 28, 2017)

Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, today announced the successful launch of an Australian miniature satellite from the United States.

The Buccaneer cube satellite, developed by Defence and the University of New South Wales, was launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on a Delta-II rocket and communications have now been established.

Minister Payne congratulated the team on the successful launch.

“Small, low-cost satellites like Buccaneer provide a unique opportunity to support Australian Defence Force capabilities and to rejuvenate Australian space research,” Minister Payne said.

“Buccaneer is designed to improve understanding of the outer atmosphere, in particular the Ionosphere, which plays a key role in Australia’s world-leading Over-the-Horizon radar capability.”

Buccaneer’s first mission is to test key technologies in preparation for the main mission in a few years when it will perform calibration activities for the Jindalee Over-the-Horizon Operational Radar Network.

Minister Payne said the 2016 Defence White Paper highlights space research and space-based systems as an important part of Australia’s Defence capability and national security.

“The Government will invest significantly in space-related projects for Defence over the next two decades and it has made a commitment to establish a national space agency to drive Australia’s involvement in space,” Minister Payne said.

The successful launch of the Buccaneer cube satellite coincides with the 50th anniversary of Australia’s first satellite, the Weapons Research Establishment Satellite (WRESAT).

-ends-
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[*] posted on 12-12-2017 at 03:40 PM


Australia’s Domestic Navy Programs Burden Defense Budget

Political demand for local production inflates Canberra’s defense spending

Dec 12, 2017

Bradley Perrett | Aviation Week & Space Technology

Australian Banquet

Imagine three people dining Asian style, with the dishes in the middle of the table. One of the diners persists with bad chopstick technique and repeatedly drops food—but keeps going back for more—so at the end of the meal no one has enjoyed quite the feast that was expected.

In Australia, that willfully sloppy eater is the navy. A strengthening political consensus, supported by the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), holds that defense equipment should be built domestically. This policy applies especially to warships and comes with a cost penalty that is so high the government dares not disclose it. More money would be available to the Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) if warships were acquired more economically.

A banquet is indeed on the table. The defense budget is rising fast and its equipment component even faster. For a few years early in the decade, the former Labor government pared defense spending in an unsuccessful attempt to produce a budget surplus amid the global economic slowdown; it let the armed forces’ funding slide to 1.6% of GDP. But the Liberal-National government elected in 2013 is determined to drive the share up to 2%—obviously because of the rising threat from China.

Not only is the defense slice of the national pie growing fast, but the pie itself also is expanding markedly. Australia’s economy, driven by high immigration, usually advances at a pace that is fast by the standards of developed countries. The result is that defense spending, adjusted for inflation, is scheduled to grow at an annual average of 5.8% in the nine fiscal years ending in June 2026. Within that, the equipment budget is due to surge 7.8% a year, calculates the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI), a Canberra think tank.



It is an eye-catching number for international arms suppliers. But they will need to show how they would perform development and production work in Australia. Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said in 2016 that the defense white paper of that year would “ensure that as far as possible, every dollar that can be spent in Australia—in our own advanced manufacturing, innovation and technology—will be spent here.” Boeing got the message. In April 2017, it opened a research and development center in Adelaide, the center of political pressure to use the defense budget to create local jobs.

Australia cannot build complete military aircraft, so the RAAF must be equipped almost entirely with imports. Its big current program is the purchase of 72 Lockheed Martin F-35As. Canberra will pay basically the same price as the U.S. government plus the costs of bringing the aircraft into service.



The army can and will buy domestically, but it is the RAN that has huge domestic projects. A program to build three air-defense destroyers in Adelaide is budgeted at A$9 billion ($6.8 billion) in 2007-19, enough to pay for four much larger and superior ships of the U.S. Arleigh Burke class at 2018 prices (but not the onetime costs of service introduction). The next major ship program—for nine so-called frigates that in fact will be air-defense destroyers with strong antisubmarine capability—is budgeted at more than A$30 billion plus A$5-7 billion for systems. Again, they will be built in Adelaide.

Then the government has penciled in more than A$50 billion to build 12 large diesel submarines in Adelaide. The government knows but will not disclose how much extra it is paying for local construction rather than importing.

The premium is obviously embarrassingly large, says ASPI budget analyst Mark Thomson. The Japanese could guess how large. They plan to order a big diesel submarine next year for ¥71.5 billion ($637 million), a fifth of the average unit price of the Australian program. Neither the development costs and greater size of the Australian boats nor the effect of inflation can explain anything like that difference.

The RAN is happy with the shipbuilding policy, despite the cost, because it brings political support that ensures programs proceed, says Thomson. The army should be most worried by the waste, he says, since naval cost blowouts could threaten its program.

By contrast, funding for the RAAF’s upcoming acquisitions is assured. Still, the RAAF, already growing, could be even larger if less of the ballooning defense budget were spent on the premium for local warship construction.

The target of spending 2% of GDP on defense should be achieved by 2020-21 but then exceeded. By ASPI’s calculations, Australia is on target to allocate 2.2% of its economy to its armed forces by 2022-23.
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