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Die australische Ministerin für die Verteidigungsindustrie, Melissa Price, verkündete am Freitag, dass die australische Rüstungsindustrie einen wichtigen Meilenstein zur Verbesserung der Fähigkeiten der F-35A Joint Strike Fighter erreicht habe. Hierbei handelt es sich um die neue BLU-111, die die gleiche Reichweite und Leistungskennziffern wie die derzeitigen Mehrzweckbomben hat, dabei aber wesentlich sicherer zu lagern, zu transportieren und zu betreiben ist. Thales Australia Limited hat nun das erste Produktionslos dieser neuen, rein in Australien produzierten Munition für die australische Luftwaffe fertiggestellt.

The BLU-111 has emerged from the collaboration of 15 Australian companies, including five small companies. "It is a practical example of the government's continued commitment to the domestic manufacture of ammunition," Price said. "Manufacturing ammunition is one of the top ten priorities for maintaining sovereign industrial capabilities in the defense sector as part of the 2018 industrial defense capability plan."

In this plan, Australia defined as the first priority projects to preserve key national industrial capabilities as follows:

- Collins class submarine maintenance and technology upgrade

- Continuous shipbuilding programs

- Modernization of land combat vehicles and technology

- Improved active and passive phased array radar capability

- Combat clothing, survivability and technologies to reduce signatures

Steigerung australischer Fähigkeiten

- Advanced signal processing skills in the areas of electronic warfare as well as cyber and information security

- Collection of surveillance and intelligence data, dissemination of analyzes and integration of complex systems

- Testing, assessment, certification and system security

- Research, design, development and manufacture of ammunition and small arms

- Maintenance of aerospace platforms

Dorothee Frank