MLS scores in China
Written by Leon Engelbrecht, Friday, 05 November 2010
MLS CE Dewald Hattingh says indications are that China may need as many as 10 000 MRAP vehicles to cover their internal needs and equip peacekeeping missions. The PLA is the largest military in the world mustering some three million soldiers, sailors and airmen, of whom some 2.5 million are in full-time service. It is said to operate over 8500 main battle tanks but just over 1000 infantry combat vehicles and 3500 armoured personnel carrier of various designs – and none mine protected.
Hattingh says he was invited by Poly Technologies to talks on the fringes of the DSEi defence exhibition in London in September last year. “After negotiations and a formulated RfP [request for proposal], we drafted a MoU [Memorandum of Understanding] on the 14th of September 2009 in London. I changed the design to accommodate the special requests for China and after a few visits to Beijing and the Chinese industry, the design was signed off,” Hattingh says.
Poly Technologies decided on Changan Industries, a major manufacturer of vehicles and ammunition in China, as MLS' Chinese manufacturing partner. Eight engineers visited South Africa in the first quarter of the year and some changes were made to the design and finally signed off. During this visit of three weeks, two hulls were build and the process demonstrated to the visiting engineers.
MLS next sent a prototype hull and component parts to Changan's Chong Qing facility and a team consisting of three South African engineers led by Tos Visser followed to assemble and transfer skills to their Chinese counterparts. The South Africans stayed for six weeks. Andre van Eeden chief designer at MLS partner Laser Sprint also visited China for a week to oversee aspects of the the process. “The first prototype vehicle was a huge success and a major achievement if one takes the distances and language barriers into consideration,” Hattingh says.
Hattingh notes Poly Technologies will be sending more engineers to be trained in the MRAP manufacturing process. Nine more vehicles will be part-manufactured in South Africa under the contract and exported to China in kit form for assembly there. Changan will take over manufacture at that point and is licenced to build 289 more vehicles. “We are committed to give close support and quality control assistance to secure our royalties,” Hattingh says. After that intellectual property will be handed over to Changan against a fee. “Our commitment is to assist with transfering of skills, providing parts and constant support for the project.”
Students from Cameroon start on-the-job training at Denel
by Denel Corporate, 3 August 2015
A group of aviation technicians, trained by Denel, have begun their on-the-job training within the aerospace and defence technology group.
Skynet 5A satellite starts move eastwards
by AIRBUS Defence & Space, 28 July 2015
The relocation will extend the Skynet constellation coverage and services, providing near-global military X-band and UHF coverage.
Strong order book, growing profit, diversified product offering confirm Denel as Africa's hi-tech powerhouse
by Denel Corporate, 24 July 2015
The company has an order book of over R35 billion, triple the value of secured orders of a few years ago, and a six-fold annual revenue cover.
Southern African Shipyards leads cost management in African shipbuilding
by 6Sigma Naval Architects, 22 July 2015The company is taking part in two tenders for the South African Navy, and has selected the CostFact system to cover its calculation demands.
Paramount Group supports orphanage, homeless shelter for Mandela Day
by Paramount Group, 21 July 2015The Paramount team assisted the Thusong Children's Orphanage and the MES Kempton City Homeless Shelter.
Denel dogs to sniff out rhino poachers in Kruger
by Denel Corporate, 16 July 2015
Specially trained dogs will be deployed in the nature reserve for the next 18 months, in terms of an agreement between Denel and SANParks.