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Montevideo, April 12th 2024 - 11:01 UTC

 

 

Argentina develops ejector seat cartridge tester, aims to counter British embargo

Monday, February 26th 2024 - 21:59 UTC
Full article 4 comments
The new test bench offers the potential to bring these jets back into service without relying on foreign suppliers, particularly the United Kingdom. The new test bench offers the potential to bring these jets back into service without relying on foreign suppliers, particularly the United Kingdom.

Argentina's Scientific and Technical Research Institute for Defense (CITEDEF) has successfully certified its own ejector seat cartridge tester to extend the life of the Super Etendard/SEM of the Naval Aviation Command (COAN), a key development in the country's efforts to achieve self-sufficiency in the defense sector. Since their acquisition in 2019, these jets have been grounded due to the British veto on the supply of essential ejection seat pyrotechnics, effectively rendering them inoperable.

“The project has been in the works for over a year,” reported Pucará Defensa magazine, highlighting the potential to replace British-made cartridges and achieve greater autonomy in maintaining Argentina's air defense capabilities.

The new test bench, operational since April 2023, marks a major breakthrough for CITEDEF. It allows the institute to conduct various critical tasks, including:

Evaluating performance of new systems: This enables Argentina to assess the capabilities of newly acquired ejector seat systems, ensuring they meet safety and operational requirements.

Extending the lifespan of existing cartridges: This approach, already employed by several countries like the US, India, and others, can significantly improve cost-effectiveness and operational readiness by delaying the need for expensive replacements.

Developing indigenous pyrotechnic/propulsive components: This is the ultimate goal, allowing Argentina to manufacture its own ejector seat cartridges, a complex technology currently mastered by only a few nations. This achievement would not only break Argentina's dependence on foreign suppliers but also potentially position the country as a regional supplier of these critical components.

This development holds particular significance for Argentina's fleet of Super Étendard Modernisé (SEM) fighter jets.

“With this certification, the scenario changes for SEM aircraft,” Pucará Defensa reported. While the final decision on deploying the SEMs rests with the Argentine Armed Forces, the new test bench offers the potential to bring these jets back into service without relying on foreign suppliers, particularly the United Kingdom.

CITEDEF's achievement underscores Argentina's commitment to technological independence in the defense sector. The ability to test, extend the lifespan, and potentially manufacture its own ejector seat cartridges strengthens the country's self-reliance and opens doors for future partnerships in the region. This development not only addresses the immediate challenge of grounding the SEM jets but also paves the way for Argentina to potentially become a regional leader in the production of this technology.

CITEDEF will need to successfully navigate the complex process of developing and manufacturing its own cartridges, ensuring they meet the stringent safety and performance standards required for military aviation.

Additionally, the institute may face ongoing political and diplomatic hurdles, particularly if it seeks to export its technology to other countries. 

Last week, former chief of CITEDEF, Pablo Bolcatto, told DERF News Agency that “With [Javier] Milei we are going backwards in Defense and Sovereignty.” Bolcatto reffers to the cut of budget of many State-owned agencies.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Zaphod Beeblebrox

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Feb 27th, 2024 - 12:39 pm +1
  • rule_britannia

    Ejector seat cartridges to be fitted to all seats in Argentine Congress and the Senate by order of President Milei so that Peronists can “go through the roof” over public spending cuts.

    Feb 28th, 2024 - 04:43 pm +1
  • imoyaro

    Live testing?

    Feb 28th, 2024 - 08:30 pm 0
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