UAE: ATK announced it has received a contract from the King Abdullah II Design and Development Bureau (KADDB) of the Kingdom of Jordan to modify two of the country’s CASA-235 transport aircraft into highly-capable and cost-effective special mission aircraft, according to the combined modification designs of both KADDB and ATK.
Subject to U.S. government export licensing approval, the modified aircraft are expected to be delivered by the late spring of 2013. Terms of the contract were not announced.
ATK’s special mission aircraft offerings integrate intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) sensors, fire control equipment, and a LW30mm link-fed gun system. These capabilities are controlled by ATK’s STAR Mission System which provides both day and night reconnaissance and fire control capabilities, and the ability to acquire, monitor and track items of interest. The CASA-235 gunship provides customers an enhanced capability to conduct responsive defense, counterinsurgency, and border surveillance and security missions.
“Weaponized aircraft is an emerging international opportunity specifically tailored for ATK’s unique capabilities,” said Mike Kahn, President of ATK Missile Products Group. “Our expertise in mission systems architecture and design, and aircraft integration and certification of complex subsystems positions us well for growth in this area.”
“Since its inception, KADDB has established itself as the preferred global partner in the Middle East for the defence industry, initially in land systems, and most recently in aircraft modification. KADDB is well situated and experienced with all the required technical knowledge and infrastructure to move into this field,” said “Shadi Ramzi” Majali, KADDB Chairman and CEO. “We are proud to embark with our well recognized and esteemed partner ATK to modify aircraft for the Jordan Armed Forces and the MENA region, and look forward to establishing this capability in Jordan.”
“We are pleased to partner with the King Abdullah II Design and Development Bureau of Jordan to develop and enhance the military aircraft capability for the Jordan Armed Forces,” said Robert Faille, ATK Director of International Business Development for the Middle East & Africa region.
For the KADDB on behalf of the Jordan Armed Forces, ATK will install and integrate electro-optical targeting systems, a laser designator, aircraft self-protection equipment, and an armaments capability that includes Hellfire laser-guided missiles, 2.75-inch rockets, and a M230 link-fed 30mm chain gun. ATK’s M230 family of guns serves on the Apache helicopter.
ATK’s scope of work includes development, systems integration, aircraft modification, and testing. Work will be performed in Jordan and at ATK facilities in Fort Worth, TX, Mesa, AZ and Pelham, AL.
Although the light gunship represents KADDB’s first endeavor in aircraft modification, it lays the foundation for further potential growth with experienced partners to accommodate Jordan and the MENA region’s requirements.
The light gunship capability package is the latest addition to ATK’s Special Mission Aircraft product portfolio, which provides affordable, responsive and advanced capabilities to customer-preferred platforms. ATK’s expertise includes outfitting various aircraft — including Cessna Caravans, Lockheed Martin C-130s, Bombardier Dash-8s, Hawker Beechcraft King Airs and others — with integrated intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities.
The King Abdullah II Design and Development Bureau (KADDB) was established by Royal Decree on the 24th of August 1999 to provide an indigenous capability for the supply of independent, high quality, efficient and cost-effective scientific and technical services to the Jordan Armed Forces (JAF). KADDB is an independent government entity within the JAF that acts as the Jordanian research and development facility created to provide a one-stop solution for the supply of defence and commercial equipment. KADDB aims at harnessing science and technology to fulfill Jordan’s defence needs and, in the process, assist the nation in creating a sustainable defence industrial base.
ATK is an aerospace, defense, and commercial products company with operations in 24 states, Puerto Rico, and internationally, and revenues of approximately $4.8 billion.