Researchers of STRIDE have developed an unmanned surface vessel (USV) prototype which measures water quality. Such role is currently being undertaken by RMN vessel and requires huge amount of human resources to implement such task. Furthermore, current method employed is only suitable for operations in deep water rather than shallow water.
The prototype uses low cost acoustic transducer integrated with GPS receiver for localization. It is also being equipped with digital compass for heading as well as water quality system.
The USV uses GRP composite material which gave its lightweight yet strong characteristic. To provide stability, it embodies catamaran concept as its design platform.
Last Friday I’ve saw a unique EC-225 (9M-SPE) which belongs to MHS Aviation at the new Eurocopter Malaysia facility at Subang Airport. The Super Puma Mk II helicopter wore a special ” EC-225″ decal on its fuselage.
EC-225 is one of the first Super Puma Mk II helicopter delivered to MHS Aviation, one of Malaysia’s leading air transport provider for oil and gas industries. The company had collaborated with Vietnamese Southern Helicopter Co last year, for the operation of the latter’s EC-225 (9M-STK), along with its two pilots and mechanics, in support of offshore oil and gas exploration activities in Malaysia for a period of two years.(here)
Southern Helicopter Co owns the largest EC-225 fleet in ASEAN region.
The first time RMN vessels were applied with camouflaged colour scheme was in the 1960’s during the operation of six Perkasa class Fast Patrol Boat (FPB) built by Vosper. Six of these FPBs uses two tone South East Asia colour scheme similar to those applied on US combat aircraft during Vietnam War. Nevertheless, the FPBs service in the RMN were short-while since they were retired from service and subsequently replaced by six FAC (G) vessels also designated as the Perkasa class.
When the RMN was tasked to support the Malaysian Army’s counter insurgency operations along the Rajang river, its LCM and LCP were also applied with the two tone camouflage colour scheme. As the communist threats diminished in the 1990’s, it seems that there has been no operational requirement whatsoever for the application of camouflage on RMN’s vessels.
Some of Malaysian Army’s assault boat also adorned standard Harimau Belang camouflage scheme.
As means to distinguished the identity of vessels operated respective maritime law enforcement agencies such as the Marine Police and the Customs, unique camouflaged scheme were applied on their respective vessels. The Marine Police has introduced three tone blue camouflaged on its vessels similar to the previous camouflaged uniform worn by the RMP’s GOF personnel. The Royal Malaysian Custom Department also applied multi tone camouflaged scheme on its boats especially its Perantas interceptor boats.
Royal Custom Department’s boat
Marine Police boat
Realising the benefit of having a camouflaged pattern which allows patrol vessels to blend with their environment so as to avoid detection, STRIDE researchers have embarked on the development of camouflaged pattern suitable for patrol vessels. Several digital and artistic camouflaged template are being proposed for possible usage as being shown as follows.
Artistic pattern template
Digital pattern template
RMAF personnel were given tours on the participating P-3C Orion operated by VP-26 “Trident” squadron from NAS Jacksonville, Florida. The RMN Aviation Branch (CUT) did not operate any maritime patrol aircraft (MPA), since the responsibility falls under the RMAF ever since the latter acquired DH-114 Heron. Following the retirement of Herons, the RMAF has operated other MPA such as HU-16 Albatross and PC-130HMP Camar. With the disbandment of No 4 Skn which transferred its Camar (subsequently converted to KC-130H standard) to No 20 Skn, the Subang based No 16 Skn has assume such role with four Beechcraft B-200TMP Super King Air.
Meanwhile, RMN sailors were given exposures on US Navy’s ROV and UUV.
Whole wide range of Jetpods
The AVCEN Jetpod was definitely a tragic story. One man’s ambition to create quick and reliable air travel much like an air taxi was destroyed in his tragic and abrupt demise following his prototype’s first and only test flight in August 16, 2009.
The Jetpod was Mr Michael Robert Dacre‘s solution to provide a very quite short take off and landing aircraft that only needs relatively short runways approximately 125 meters. Having such aircraft would not only benefited commercial markets. It also befits several other roles such rural transport, MEDEVAC as well as military function.
The Jetpod prototype prior to its tragic end
The fact that the unfortunate aircraft did fly was an astounding proof that the concept might work and that the aircraft do have great potential should it has had made a successful flight during the August 16 incident. Malaysia would probably made some gains too because there has been plans that production of the aircraft will be made here. AVCEN even had an office at Kuala Lumpur’s Technology Park just to prove that it is serious to do business.
The Jetpod crashed and burst into flame
Having said that however, it has been nearly four years since the incident and there has been no indication that Mr Dacre’s work will be continued by any interested parties or individuals.
Weststar Maxus Sdn Bhd, the automotive arm of Weststar Group aims to increase its contribution to the Group’s revenue by 40% within the next 2 years compared to 20% last year. The targeted contribution is supported by the strong sales growth in the domestic market as well as the company’s move to expand its operations abroad.
The company is the supplier of Weststar 4×4 GS Cargo, several of which have been deployed to Lahad Datu, Sabah as part of Ops Daulat. It also supplies Weststar Maxus V80 to the Malaysian Army consist of 100 Passenger Vans and 40 Ambulances supplied in 2010. Weststar is also proposing its Weapon Platform to MINDEF.
Weststar Maxus V80 during Indo Defence
Weststar GS Cargo
Weststar Weapon Platform