Monday, February 24, 2014

+2 AW109 Helicopters for PH Navy, Separate ASW Helicopter Project Announcement Expected Soon

AgustaWestland recently confirmed the contract signing with the Philippine Navy (PN) for the order of 2 additional AW109 Power naval helicopters for the PN Naval Air Group (PN-NAG), as an extension of an earlier contract for 3 units. The contract includes training and intergrate logistics This will bring the PN-NAG AW109 fleet to 5 units, which they will be using for a variety of naval missions including maritime surveillance, search and rescue, and maritime security. These helicopters are configured to operate from ships or from shore bases.


One of the PN's AW109 Power naval helicopters.
Photo taken from AgustaWestland website.

The PN confirmed that these 2 additional units will be armed, although no specific mention on how different they are from the 1st batch of naval helicopters delivered in 2013. There were previous indication that they will be more capable than the first 3 units, and due to this they are expected to be the specific units that will be embarked aboard the 2 Gregorio del Pilar-class frigates.

MaxDefense expects that the only difference these 2 helicopters will have with the earlier 3 units delivered will be in terms equipment installed, with a possible electronic counter-measures (ECM) system and armaments launching capability, possibly rocket launchers or gun pods, which can also be installed on the earlier 3 birds already in service with the PN. MaxDefense believes that these 2 helicopters may still not be able to carry torpedoes or missiles due to the absence of detection capabilities.


The initial 3 AW109 Power naval helicopters during commissioning rights. 2 more additional units was recently ordered by the PN from AgustaWestland, with expected delivery within this year.


Besides these helicopters, the PN is expected to announce updates on its procurement plans for an initial of 2 anti-submarine warfare (ASW) helicopters that will be embarked on the future new-built PN frigates that may enter service starting in 2017. The helicopters are expected to be larger and more capable than the AW109 Power naval helicopters, and will be able to conduct anti-submarine and anti-ship warfare missions. Previous DND and PN procurement plans indicate that the ASW helicopter project will have a budget of around Php 5.4 billion (around $120 million, or $60 million per helicopter). The budget itself indicates that this would be far capable than the AW109 Power.



Both the Sikorsky MR-60R Seahawk (above) and AgustaWestland AW159 Lynx Wildcat (below) may be considered for the PN's future ASW helicopters. 

MaxDefense believes that at the price range and capability required by the PN, this  may be a competition between the Sikorsky MH-60R Seahawk, AgustaWestland AW159 Lynx Wildcat, Airbus Helicopters (formerly Eurocopter) AS565MB Panther, and the AgustaWestland-Airbus Helicopters NH90NFH. But MaxDefense sources have indicated the PN's preference for the MH-60R Seahawk due to compatibility and interoperability with US and allied naval forces. The US, Australian, and Japanese navies all use the Seahawk series as their embarked ASW helicopter, as well as other Asian navies like that of Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand.

MaxDefense will be updated on both the additional AW109 and the upcoming frigate-based ASW helicopters as more information comes.

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UPDATES:
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June 9, 2014:
The PN announced that the delivery of 2 armed and navalized AW-109 helicopters will be made before the end of the year. This will bring the PN Naval Air Group's AW109 inventory to a total of 5 helicopters. These armed helicopters are expected to be deployed with the 2 Gregorio del Pilar-class frigates, PF-15 and PF-16.

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122 comments:

  1. Yes that's a great news....

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  2. I also believe that the PN wil select the Romeo (MH-60R) to take advantage of our Balikatan and other exercises with the US Navy.

    People commonly forget that training is also expensive.

    It will also make it easy for the USN to "help" us in HDAR and "other" situations.

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  3. Though MH60 is more preparable for the AFP but the budget may only suit for the lynx. Anyway it is still a work in progress, but, I hope they would expedite this project the soonest. The Chinese are again harassing our fishermen in our own backyard. Thanks for the new info. Gerry

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    1. Reportedly, the budget is enough to get MH-60Rs, subject to how the government will purchase it. If it intends to order together with another country's bulk order like that of the USN, then it can get the birds cheaper.

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    2. I think MH-60R is not designed on littoral environment warfare threats. The US is using another variant of helo for littoral warfare because the Pacific is composed of mass of Island.

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    3. ASW helicopters are designed to operate on any naval environment, not just specifically on littorals or open seas. Maybe you mean to say the difference between the SH-60B and SH-60F, and the newer MH-60R. SH-60B doesn't have dipping sonar but have surface search radar and towed MAD. It's the other way around for SH-60F. The MH-60R has both, except for the MAD. That's why the MH-60R is more capable than the SH-60 series, although all 3 are based on the same H-60/S-70 platform.

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    4. I know there are series of modification for SH and MH ASW. We are talking here what is the threat in pacific ASW so that our future ASW helo has the capability for defense and offense capability in.littoral ASW. Do you know the choke point on the Pacific for ASW?

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  4. MH60R is the logical choice if it will be G-to-G aquisition..it is capable of ASW with MAD sensor and RADAR for ASuW.....I hope sir Max it will be on the pipeline by 2015 timing with arrival of two brand new frigates...

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  5. They should get at least one as soon as possible on parallel procurement with ASW training and ASW ship systems. What good will it be without a well equipped mother ship. The Philippine navy should start training abroad ASAP so that when the unit arrives they can use it immediately. All of the future procurements would be useless if we don't train even before the unit arrives or else we risk making them white elephants.

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    1. That's the reason why the AW109 Power was ordered first - to train the PN NAG on more capable and modern helicopters that the BO-105 can't provide. Pilots which have sufficient training with the AW109 especially on ship operations will be prioritized for ASW helicopter training in the future.

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  6. I think when it comes to cost, I think the Philippines are best served with the AgustaWestland AW159 Lynx Wildcat, AS565 MB or the NH-90 NFH. The MH-60R is too expensive, and I highly doubt the Philippines have the capability to operate one. Though I think The Philippines should look at the NH90 because they have two versions the NH90 TTH & NH90 NFH. If they get both, they have common systems and simplified maintenance. The PAF can have the NH90 TTH and the Navy can have the NH90 NFH.

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    1. Nicky, the NH90NFH is more expensive than the MH-60R. Besides, the cost of the MH-60R may only be secondary as the PN wanted the interoperability and compatibility with US naval forces, even if it means a little more expensive.

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    2. Aside from that, the PN has a requirement for LPD-based helicopters in the near future, and it appears that the PN is also leaning on the MH-60S. The SSV was specified to be able to accommodate specifically Black Hawk helicopters.

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    3. But then again, if you want a Medium lift Helicopter than can transport your Marines to the fight from your LPD then NH90 TTH is the way to go. I also think the NH90 NFH and the NH90 TTH would be a good option because diplomatically, they don't come with strings attached that the MH-60R has from America. Something to think about if you want to be an Independent Nation and not relying on American Military aid. As for MH-60R, the price tag for one MH-60R is $42.9m per helicopter and this is how much Australia paid for their MH-60R http://www.abc.net.au/news/2011-06-16/smith-announces-3b-chopper-deal/2760424

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    4. Why is interoperability and compatibility with US naval forces so important? Isn't commonality of eqpt. within the AFP impt. also?

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    5. Nicky, the SSV requirement may not necessarily be the MH-60S. It could even be a marinized S-70i. The SSV was designed with the Black Hawk in mind, not the NH90. Besides, the NH90 is far more expensive than the S-70 series.

      Anonymous, interoperability and compability with US forces is very important since we will be getting most of our ASW and naval ops training, doctrine, and even joint operations with them. The PN is starting from scratch so it won't affect commonality with other PN assets, besdies the Black Hawk series is already at an advantage compared to all the possible choices for ASW and SSV-based utility helicopter since there are also plans for PAF to bring in the S-70i for its other requirements in the near future aside from the one operated by the 250th wing.

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    6. Nicky, its not entirely relying on America. But as a MNNA and because of the MDT, our forces are closely tied to those of the US when things go from bad to worse. That's the same reason why the AFP is being trained to use American equipment that are not available with the AFP, including operations from USMC and USN CH-46, CH-53, MV-22, and AAV7s, operating the M-777 howitzers, operating from USN amphibious vessels and LCAC, etc. It is inevitable that whatever major military action the PH goes in, the US military would be there directly or indirectly. You should know this as you are with the US military.

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    7. In Reality, the MNNA that the Philippines has doesn't mean that the US has to honor the Mutual defense treaty because the Philippines is not a NATO member. Here's what it means to be an MNNA http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_non-NATO_ally.

      Then does the Philippines want American gear with strings attached such as basing rights and visiting forces agreement. I think they need to think about that because even though the Philippines don't want Americans on their soil, but they want American military protection from china.

      Then again America doesn't trust the Philippines because their have been reports where the US gave Military aid and weapons to the Philippines. In turn the Philippine generals & Admirals have been known sell it on the black market to the same enemy they are fighting against. When they are captured with their weapons, we find the serial numbers traced back to the US weapons & aid we originally gave to the Philippines

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    8. It could also mean that the 10-ton requirement of our SSV will serve other allied nations' naval helis, it doesnt necessarily mean we would operate MH-60S's. I think as far as SAR naval helis are concerned, our workhorse is recognized in the AW109. Now with respect to a bigger SAR naval heli well just have to wait and see unless theres something i dont know thats already in the pipeline.

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    9. Nicky, you misunderstand this MNNA and MDT. There is no need for an MNNA agreement as there is a standing and older RP-US MDT since 1951. So even without the MNNA status, the US is bounded to honor its treaty to help defend the Philippines.

      MNNA means that the Philippines is eligible from the program's benefits, but it does not mean the US will defend the Philippines - that is covered by the RP-US MDT 1951. If the US doesn't trust the PH, then why retain the MDT and MNNA agreements? As for selling to black market, can you name any besides small arms and ammunition?

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    10. Anonymous, the 10-ton helicopter requirement on the SSV and frigate applies to any model, it can be American, European, or even Asian. But the SSV specifications already gave-away a very important detail, which is to specify the Black Hawk as the helicopter template. Why the Black Hawk? Because the President will be riding in one (or three). And there are many other projects that may include the Black Hawk in a way or two that are still in the pipeline.

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    11. when you compare other MNNA countries to PH they received more benefits from it than us like Egypt & Pakistan they received Millions or Billions of dollars in military aid from the US, specifically Egypt they used to received Brand New F-16 every year from the US until their aid was suspended. as MDT it is common knowledge that US will not go to war with China due to Spratly island. they will only defend us if China invaded parts of the mainland PH.

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    12. I believe there is a fine section in the MDT covering philippine assets in the pacific. Worth looking at it but seems vague. Meaning the shoal might not be covered, but the ships could be. It is currently US best interest to resolve the tension peacefully.

      However, things could change if US has an interest in developing oil reserves in the west phil sea for its energy security agreement with the phil.

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  7. sir max..can you clarify something to me first the modernization program
    according to republic act. no. 10348 SEC. 6. Period of Implementation. - The
    Revised AFP Modernization Program under this Act
    shall be implemented over a period offi.fteen (15) years
    effective upon the date of the approval of this Act:
    Provided, however, That payments for amortization
    of outstanding multi-year contract obligations
    incurred under the Revised AFP Modernization Act
    may extend beyond this period."

    it means at least 75billion pesos every 5 years will be pour on AFP modernization? and no one will againts it unless they going to revise it again..

    the phillipines will going to spend at least 200billion/4.5dollar on afp modernization??

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    1. The 1st 5 years covers 2013-2017. Php 75 billion was earmarked, although the government always has the option to provide supplementary budget, like what it has done to purchase the WHECs, additional C-130s, etc. The 2nd 5 years should be allocated with more than Php 75 billion, but that would be dependent on the next administration if it fully supports the AFP Modernization program.

      The new program actually pales in comparison with the original 1995 AFP Modernization Act, which should have provided the AFP Php 330 billion (US$13 billion in 1995).

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    2. Max, are the MPAC armed with missile is also part of the supplementary budget?

      http://www.zambotimes.com/archives/news/85493-Missile-armed-MPACs-now-on-the-way.html

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    3. No, it is part of the original allocated budget for the MPAC as part of the 1st 5 years of the revised AFP Modernization act.

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  8. If the 2 additional helis are specific for the Gregorio del Pilar - class frigates, the navy should have chosen a more heavily armed type to sort of make up for whatever is lacking on the ships.

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    1. The MH-60 or SH-60 can't fit the Gregorio del Pilar-class frigates. Also, if the PN waits for the budget to purchase more capable helicopters, it may not be able to get any helicopter by now. This AW109 will also be used as a training platform for ship-embarked helicopters, as what the NAG has been doing since December.

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    2. Max is correct, MH-60s are a little big for the 15 and 16 but can still do it if needed. The key is training - it is very dangerous to land a helicopter on rough seas.

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  9. $60 million for ASW helicopter? Bakit di nalang dinagdag sa budget ng frigate yun para mas capable yung new warship natin?

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    1. A frigate is more capable with an embarked helicopter, which is an integral part of the frigate's system, and is the primary ASW weapon of the ship. It is also capable of over the horizon targeting, anti-ship missile launching, and other capabilities that a naval helicopter should have. Besides, the budget for these 2 projects are separate.

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    2. With the Over the Horizon Targeting helo has a disadvantage because is an easy target. It must be a balance of putting a missile for defense or offense and a capable EW suit to counter such threat coming against the helo during ASW operation this will play the doctrine of operation.

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    3. OTHT is just part of the capability. Its use will be dependent on the threat encountered, need to activate, or any other reason. The frigates, as I discussed before, are being specified as fitted for but not with, and may even be fitted with better armaments than earlier specified due to the possibility of supplementary budgets being available during the ship's construction.

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    4. I know the OTHT is just part of the Frigate capability, what I mean here is that the Helo it must be equipped with defense and offense capability because once the helo is being used for OTHT of the frigate it means the helo must have a missile aside from ASW capability including passive defense. In my own opinion I do not agree with the fitted for but not with for our frigate platform. First is the displacement on the written technical specifications for the bidding documents is in line with existing and proven designed frigate or because of our PHP18B pesos I think this amount is only for two platforms with minimal weapon systems if the hull is a stealth design. Second is the frigate is a proven modular designed because this is feasible with fitted for but not with. Third there have been problems on fitted for but not with with regard to platform stability, speed, power and cooling systems design? We have a meager resources because fitted for but not with is tantamount to have a proto type design platform. This is our country we must think for the good of our nation. Real threats is out there. Do our future frigate platform is ready to counter the threts from laser and rail gu weapons including Electromagnetic Pulse weapons? if we are not ready to have a frigate because of our meager resources it is better to have a corvette. Even south korea their frigate is not capable to anti-air mission that is why US naval platform is out there. Compare South Korea GDP to our country GDP, our leaders it must think for the good of our country for future Filipino generation is really a frigate or corvette or OPV. I am a Filipino and a formerly a Naval Officer. Let us be true to our countryman.

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  10. 120 million dollars for 2 helis? im not impressed. with just 2 helis, looking for a sub in our vast backyard is like finding needle in a haystack. i'd rather they buy additional land based anti ship missiles and radar to deter the surface combatants of the enemy. we should have redundant missile systems in place first before we move on to the next level. redundancy is the key. on the other hand, getting a few of everything will never work.

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    1. The PN will only get 2 for now, because it only ordered 2 frigates for now. The original plan is to get 6 frigates and 12 corvettes, and that includes 1 ASW helicopter for each ship. A total of 18 ships with 18 ASW helicopters.

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    2. Mast-mounted and land-based surface-search radars don't really have that much range to detect targets because of the horizon. Other than ASW, naval helicopters are also supposed to provide over the horizon targeting information for their own side's surface assets. $60 million per chopper is actually very decent compared to what capability you're getting -- there was a white paper by a US-based think tank that proposed MH-60Rs as a sort of poor man's AWACS for the philippines, to be used to detect both air and surface targets, then have land-based AShMs and SAMs based in palawan engage them.

      here's the white paper, by the way: http://www.fpri.org/pubs/2012/Chang.TransformingPhilippinesDefenseArchitecture.pdf

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    3. In todays real warfare is a matter what is the doctrine and concept of operation. Yes, the Helo is an easy target for ASW warfare and that is why some of the G7 countries is using AWACS and Poseidon P8 orion because P3 system is not capable to the present threats in battle space warfare unless its system will be upgraded in the current and future threats. The fix wing with complete system for battle space warfare for defense and offense with better speed than helicopter. But commonly now in new frigate doctrine of operations they have helo and with fix wing UAV for surveillance and ASW capability and unmanned sub surface vessel. Is a matter what we need in the doctrines and concept of operation of our beloved Navy.

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    4. Contrary to what you find in the internet, one MH-60 cost more than $80M.
      Max, 6 frigates and 18 corvettes? How will the Philippine Navy maintain such a fleet? Do they have a port to dock these things?

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    5. That is what the PN wanted, a fleet of 6 AAW frigates and 12 ASW corvettes. Of course it can't be done in an instant, so does docking, financing and manpower requirements. It will take time, but that is the target number.

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  11. 60 M each for 2 heli's?? NH 90 and MH 60 cost around 42 Million each.. so, just dont know the price of AW 159... But great Job, hope the next President will arm the AFP much better than the Aquino Admin...

    Whatever they choose between AW 159 and MH 60 would be better... These two has a lot of arms it could carry... But as Sir Max said, he much prefer to MH 60...

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    1. The budget will include spares and ILS, associated equipment like dipping sonar and surface search radar, data links, etc. I am just not sure if armaments like torpedoes and ASM are included in the budget, or will be a separate program.

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    2. According to Naval-technology.com, the MH-60 R is the best ASuW helicopter, Next is the NH-90 then the Kamov ka 27/28 and then the AW159 Wildcat... So if it is the MH 60R then 60 Million each is really worth it...

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  12. So besides from additional arm 2- AW109 which was already on the pipeline your saying sir Max that 2-ASW chopper will be acquired soon?

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  13. just a fast question why not sub first then ASW

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    1. Submarines are much more expensive to operate and it would take time for the PN to learn how to use those...

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    2. What PH needs is presence. Frigates, along with their helos will bring that to the table because they can patrol our domain. We want to let the world know that this area is ours.

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    3. Yeah.. we need presence.. Have you heard in the news that a chinese coast guard ship fired water canons on our fishermen?

      Sir Max, Do you have any news about the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar? What happened to that ship and are there updates about what upgrades it underwent?

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    4. The WESCOM is now in charge for the patrol in WPS, if they use our 2 cutters to patrol there, i think china will also send some frigates or destroyers to match our frigate..

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    5. If we have at least two subs and the Chinese know it, they will think twice before venturing inside our territorial waters. Right now we don't know if Chinese subs are already lurking under those contested waters because we are incapable of detecting them. The big deterrence offered by a submarine is stealth.

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  14. The cost of the sixth submarine ("Kokuryu") was estimated at 540 million USD.
    90 dollar each I think it better the a 60m dollar ASW..

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S%C5%8Dry%C5%AB-class_submarine

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    1. Sixth, not six, so 540 million each...

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    2. I don't think there is a 90 Million Submarine? and Japan does not export there military hardware since after the WWII they became a Pacifist Nation...

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    3. for the subs, if the DND wan't it before 2020 i'm sure they will buy the 2nd hand submarine, like sauro of italy or the retiring submarine of spain, if we're lucky that the japanese govt. approve their plans to export military equipment, we can buy Oyashio-class because we have a good relation from them.

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  15. I think we could get the MH-60R for about $50M based on costs in wiki and that could include ils, training, etc. but I doubt it for the armament. The wildcat is also a good platform but it is smaller compared to the romeo. A european country had ordered the NH90, I think netherlands? But there were issues esp the delivery w/c took years so I think the PN won't go for that. The MH-60R is just right. Sir max how about the AW101 Merlin? It also has ASW capability right? Used by the Italian and Royal navy. It has a bigger payload and I think it would be suited for naval transport from the LPD's. Considering also that we ordered aw109 maybe we could get some support there.

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  16. Max, i think these 2 ASW heli's will be used by 2 brand new frigate, and if our budget for the SSV is complicated, i think CH-135 Twin Huey is enough for it..

    and by the way the US starting to retire their CH-46 Sea Knight.. i think this will be fit for our MRV or air force.. and japan is still selling spare parts of it..

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    1. As I said in the blog content, the ASW helicopters are for the new frigates, as they are the ones tasked with ASW, not the SSV. The Twin Huey is already old, and are out of production. Maybe you mean the Bell 412? The CH-46, I believe, is out of the question due to age, availability of better alternatives, and other reasons.

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  17. wow hope we get heli gunships real soon, 30 of them luzvimin, PILIPINAS "ONE".

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  18. sir max just want to make sure, these units would be brand new right?? just for the benefit for everybody.

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    1. The AW109 will be brand new. The ASW helicopter will be new as planned, but can still change depending on the requirements of the PN, or if there will be better alternatives that may include EDA from friendly countries.

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  19. question to all max blogger? the new frigate will deliver in the nxt 2 or 3 years. my question is what is the name of 2 frigate? what do you think brp corazon aquino or brp noy noy aquino.

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    1. The two frigates will probably be named after war heroes. While the SSVs will probably be named after a place/province in the Philippines

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    2. yep, it will be a war hero name, i think the first one will be BRP Vicente Lim and the 2nd one is BRP Alfredo M. Santos...

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    3. Frigates and corvettes will probably be named after heroes or historical Filipinos. The SSV, being an amphibious assault vessel, will be named with Philippine provinces or cities. This is a standard naming system used by the PN.

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    4. maybe brp napoles.. or brp estrada o brp enrile.. but seriously, my pick is brp Cabangbang (don"t remember the first name) but according to what I've read, he provided a great amount of intelligence to the Allies during ww2 as commander of a guerilla unit somewhere in luzon. he is also the mediator between the guerilla units and Huks(communists) to unite powers against the japanese.

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    5. The name 'Andres Bonifacio' is quite popular and was one of our previous patrol frigate. I wouldn't also be surprised if they would be named after pre-Spanish heroes or as new 'Datu Sikatuna' or 'Datu Lakandula'.

      Sometimes names of ships are political expression of sitting adminstrations. It would not be far off if one of the SSV would be named as 'BRP Tarlac'.

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  20. what the Fa-50/T50ph will be called?blue diamonds or something new?

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    1. Blue Diamonds is the PAF's premier aerobatic team. It's not an aircraft's name, as mistakenly labelled by 1 radio reporter when talking about the F-5A/B Freedom Fighter.

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  21. Max Sorry if this is out of Topic, the korean signed contract with raytheon for nine Phalanx Block 1B for their FFX Batch II frigates, the cost for 9 CIWS are $123 million, it's quite cheaper than what i expected, i hope we can make the same deal for our 2 hamilton class and 2 brand new frigate..

    http://raytheon.mediaroom.com/index.php?s=43&item=2527

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    1. The Koreans are ordering in bulk (yes, 9 is already bulk for this kind of weapons system). In the Philippines' case, we can avail of lower costs by riding our order together with a bulk order of another country, much like what the PN did when it ordered 2 Mk.38 Mod.2 guns together with the USN's order.

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    2. oh.. i didn't know we can make that kind of order, thanks for that info.

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    3. Why didn't the PN order 4 Mk.38 Mod.2 gun for both hamilton class?

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    4. @AnonymousFebruary 27, 2014 at 2:13 PM

      maybe because of the price or PN want it only for training...

      just a guess :P

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  22. yeah that's approximately the price for South Korea's new Wildcats
    $66 million each. Anyway, good for the Philippine Navy :)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X0Mc0ezSyIw

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  23. did you read chuck hugel cancel litoral ship in favor of small ship but with huge fire power. wonder why PN go for large ship but "fit but not with" policy.you may as well install water cannon on that "fit but not with" so you can at least shoot back at china ship. yeah frigate arm with water cannon. san kapa.....

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    1. Budget limitations. It allows the PN the option of getting weapons on a separate budget at a later date.

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    2. The upcoming light frigates are not large at all. They are relatively small.... small as they can get actually.

      If the Philippines go smaller than that, they won't be able to fit future weapon systems. So no, in fact the PH is going for SMALL ship with potential HUGE firepower

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  24. OOT a bit. I notice something in the Flag Counter for this blog. No visitor from China ever? Not one? Hehe....

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    1. Blogspot is blocked by China's firewall. Anyone from China who wishes to access Blogspot (and Facebook, and Twitter, and many others) will have to use a proxy of some sort to fool China's firewall. Since this proxy is located in another country, the counter will think that it came from that other country, not China.

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  25. sir max. how much is the supplementary budget for defense, if the aquino administration is very serious for modernization of afp? and the supplementary budget is yearly?

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    1. No definite amount yet. But it would definitely be far lower than the Php 75 billion allocated for the first 5 years under the revised AFP Modernization act.

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  26. Hi sir Max! Thanks for this info. In relation to helicopters, it was still reported in Jane's World Air forces 2014 that 4 AS550 Fennec is on order/ordered. How true is this? Do you have any idea? Hoping for your response.Thank you.

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  27. It is here sir Max: http://img.en25.com/Web/flightglobal/%7B88f2f053-6c3d-4ab4-a297-0b453358a560%7D_FC055_PREM_201312.pdf?elq=bb2c625e12d24da09b4a8b3081f1e98e

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    1. Flight International's report is not updated, and there are several mistakes on their listing not only for the Philippines but for several air arms as well. The Fennec did not materialize, instead the AW109 was ordered by the PAF.

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  28. @Alvin-Jr - Anyone can mask their location...China pa.....
    They have the capability to hack US Defense contractors...

    That is why as much is possible, AFP capabilities..should not be fully disclosed for security reason... Paul

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  29. sir max are you in the united states or uk....if you don't mind

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  30. Sir Max Sorry, my question is off topic. I've read from japantimes.co.jp that Japan will revise their self imposed banned for arms export. and it will benefit other friendly nations like Philippines. it said that the new rules would enable the Japanese government provide defense equipment. if ever they will offer to us their decommissioned ships. would it be possible that the PN can maintain its operating cost? some of their ships uses IHI boilers.

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    1. There are some Japanese ships that are within reach of the PN's capability, like the Abukuma-class destroyer escort which are CODOG. The most possible destroyer the Japanese can offer is the Hatsuyuki-class, which is their oldest class in operation. These are actually COGAG. If the PN is really in need of warships and these are given for free, the government should adjust to the PN's financial requirements.

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  31. OT: with P-3 Orion is being replace by the P-8 Poseidon, does PN plan to acquired some EDA P-3s ?

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    1. EDA's again? We could acquire the CN 295 ASW version...

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  32. Sir Max Thanks for the reply.. I'm waiting for your New Topic! your blog is very informative :-)

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  33. this afp modernization should continue until further notice wether refurbished or brand new weapons systems and aircrafts and ships, just keep it going to protect the archipelago both for domestic and foreign threats. Local defense industries should also be developed.

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  34. the AFP modernization finally is moving but not enough. its kind of late actually now that China which is the main threat has now an aircraft carrier and 3 more being built locally. The AFP unfortunately will not be able to catch up with China. Its just a matter of time when shooting starts. this is the result of the politicians neglecting the AFP..

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    1. I don't know why the DND is not yet posting a Bid for Anti-Aircraft and Shore Based Anti-ship missile systems to counter Aircraft and Aircraft carriers of china.. Ang tagal...

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    2. And if Binay and his cohorts are elected expect a monkey wrench being thrown to the modernization effort. That's not only my opinion but others as well in other defense blog site.

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  35. With the 2 additional AW109s for the GDP light frigates being armed , the next question is how and what type of armaments since it has limitations on weight and sensors. Can these 109s be armed with light missiles like sea skua or penguins sea skimming anti ship missiles. In the event the GDP be armed with anti ship missiles can these Helos performes as an over the horizon targeting system . Since these Helos would be providing additional capabilities with the GDP class does this mean that additional sensors would be added on these ships. One of the bloggers asked or addressed a question why only 1 ship of the GDP would be suited w/ the mk 38 mod 2 remote controlled gun system . Is the PN trying to do its on test analysis whether these system would serve its purpose for the GDP class . At the current pace the rearming of these ex Hamiltons the PN has not surpassed the armaments when it was serving the USCG not to mention the sensors it was equipped with during its time as a cutter. On a diffrent note the AFP are leaning towards the Israel defense contractors for a modern sensors and SAM systems , hopefully they would be able to assist them with the modernization of the GDP class to be the first missle armed ship of the PN . I recently read an article on how the US navy has recently found out base on a hypothetical electronic naval scenario with their littoral ships being under armed and the current modern vessels of the PN of having inadequate sensors and anti ship missiles pitted against the PLAN corvettes and frigates. Hopefully the Philippine congress would be able to comprehend the current situation and state of the AFP and the pace it's been doing to undertake the reforms it need to accomplish against an insurmountable task ahead of them . On the horizon with China being overly aggressive in their quest to dominate and extend their borders Japan might be the white horse the Philippines is waiting if the Japanese Constituition be ratified in allowing them to export their excess defense article . Let's wait and see with time against us.

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  36. In my understanding if i may the upgrades of GDP class frigates will depend or base on what sensors/radar and weaponry will be installed to new frigates currently under bidding by PN/DND. let's say if in the two brand new frigates now in the pipeline got a harpoon AShM then I think and logically the GDP class will have the same AShM.

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  37. The Anti-Access and Area Denial with Air-Sea Control concept of operation is now the trend in warfare of the powerful naval and aerial forces. The threat in warfare now a days is very complex even the US is continuously.upgrading their warfare system. For us third country what is the Policy, Strategic Doctrine and Concept of operation. The trend now.is the.acquisition.of submarine, with.more displacement for.Multi-role.frigate with stealthy designed because sensors and.weapons.now.a days.can.hit the target at 300Km with.supersonic and.stealthy design. In my own humble opinion let us really have to study if this.P18B is really for frigate platform. Let us tell our leaders the real score out there.and.also tell the truth to our country man that P18B is not enough for Multi Role Frigate. Let us be honest.

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    1. tsk tsk the frigate that DND bidding was not actually a multi role frigate or something its a light frigate..because the bugdet limitation

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  38. is this article accurate that PN is buying Anti-Sub Heli AW-159 for the Hamiltons? I thought this project is for the upcoming brand-new firgate that PN is currently bidding.

    http://www.interaksyon.com/article/82880/dnd-earmarks-p5-4b-for-anti-submarine-choppers

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    1. Not for the GDP-class, but for the 2 new incoming frigates. The GDP's prohibitive hangar dimensions won't allow for the Wildcat and Seahawk to be serviced and kept inside. But these ASW helicopters can operate from them. That's why the PN opted the AW109 for the GDP-class. It would be best to note that these ASW helicopters may be delivered earlier than the new frigates so its possible that the GdP-class would also become training platforms for ASW helicopter pilots operating from ships.

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  39. Hi SIr Max!! I've read from InterAksyon.com. DND said it has allocated P5.4 billion for the acquisition of two brand-new ASW Helicopter and the process is expected to be completed by this year. and they are considering the AW 159 wildcat FOR THE GDP CLASS.. is it true?, if Yes" it will boost the capability of the GDP's embarked with AW 159

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    1. Please see my reply to the post above yours.

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    2. I hope PN will select MR-60R. Based on the budget, I think 3 ASWs can be acquire. Can PN do a govt to govt acquisition with US for Romeos? After all the US is giving us peanuts of military assistance compared to Pakistan.

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    3. The MH-60R and S-70B are actually somewhere within or near the budget allocated by the DND. It is possible that these ASW helicopters will be procured via negotiated bid or G2G, so I don't expect a public tender. The US is willing to sell as long as we are willing to pay. That's the way it is with the US and with any supplier.

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  40. Thanks a lot Sir Max.. well explained".. the news that are posted today, seems very confusing.

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  41. Hi Max, we are buying new CUHs, the Bells but why relegate them to VIP transport roles and not use the Sokols instead. I just feel that we need every new CUH in the front line. What will happen to the old Bells bought during the Ramos time? By the way, in your estimate, what should be the ideal CUH and Attack Helicopters should we have? Freddie

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    1. The 4 Bell 412EPs "bought" during the Ramos administration were actually "leased" from a Japanese company. So technically the PAF doesn't own them. 1 of the 4 helicopters crashed in Ifugao or Mountain Province a few years back. This 8 units are the initial orders, more are to be procured in the next few years.

      The PAF has its own study wherein they can better replace the UH-1H in a 1:1 basis using a similar-sized CUH like the Bell 412. They find it more practical than going for bigger but more expensive to buy and operate helicopters like the Black Hawk. There is an incoming APEC summit this year, which is why the PAF is prioritizing VIP roles for now. Another VVIP helicopter is on the way soon aside from the Bell 412, for use by the President himself.

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    2. Thanks Max for the clarification but I hope the PAF accelerates the modernization and expansion of our helicopter fleet. I understand that once upon a time we had 120 Hueys. Freddie

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    3. I got corrected by one of our readers. There were actually 6 Bell 412EP helicopters purchased during the Ramos administration. One of them crashed, so there are 5 remaining.

      It might be possible that some of these Bell 412EP with the Presidential Airlift Wing will be converted to combat utility helicopters after refurbishing, while at least 3 of the new Bell 412s from Canada will be in VIP configuration to replace the elder PAW helicopters.

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  42. Hi Max, we are buying new CUHs, the Bells but why relegate them to VIP transport roles and not use the Sokols instead. I just feel that we need every new CUH in the front line. What will happen to the old Bells bought during the Ramos time? By the way, in your estimate, what should be the ideal CUH and Attack Helicopters should we have? Freddie

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  43. Max, please enlighten us on the planned acquisition of 8 Bell 412 combat utility helicopters from Canada amounting to 4 Billion plus. Why get them when we could buy new Sokols combat utility helicopters twice the number noting the 2 Billion acquisition price we paid Swidnick in the past.

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    1. Please look for my other blog entry regarding the Sokol from several months ago.

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    2. If you read the news in Philstar that congressman from Isabela - Albano commented that the purchase of the Anti Sub helicopter must be investigated. And if you read down the line his logic is twisted. Must be a third column of the Chinese to throw a monkey wrench at the project.

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    3. This congressman is either stupid, looking for media mileage, or is a Chinese lapdog. I am so sure that he is at least one of the 3. If he's stupid, it can still be cured by letting him know his stupidity and correct him with proper information. If he's the other 2 reasons, then the government should investigate his connections as it is detrimental to national security. If a senator can be arrested in the US, so does a congressman in the Philippines.

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    4. The chinese may have something on him.

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    5. That is why, the people should vote wisely. Scrap those politicians that are only pain in the ass...this people have dark agendas and are conspiring with the enemy of the state. Oppositionist like this congressman is detrimental to the modernization of the AFP Modernization program.

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  44. Let us all forget those politicians. Most of them have greencard and houses in US or Europe. If war erupts they are the first one to run away and come back later when thing back to normal. And remember politicians are behind this insurgents.

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  45. hi to all, nakita ko na po yang aw-109e attack helicopter nung blessing at turn over ceremony nitong august. ok sana kaya lang bakit tig iisang hardpoint lang meron sa each sides e nung sinabi sa specified requirements ng paf bago bumili ng attack helicopter dapat 2 hardpoints in each sides. e parang md 520 pa rin ang pay load pala nito.. sana yung bagong model ng md helicopter ang pinili nila yung md540A or ah 6i ng boeing dahil meron talagang 2 hardpoints sa each sides. kaya nitong magkarga ng hellfire missile, dagr missile ng lockheed martin, raytheon antenna missile guided and unguided rockets tapos may naka install na rin ito ng tig iisang mini guns sa magkabilang sides. puro porma lang aw109 e passenger helicopter na ginawang armed variant. pinili ng paf kasi may retractable landing gear daw, e hindi naman magagamit sa combat yun. ano ba naman yan. maganda gamitin tong aw109 sa mga rescue mission.

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