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Defence news and features

Big year for GA-ASI Remotely Piloted Aircraft

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

At the half-way mark of 2018, it’s already shaping up to be a banner year for General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA-ASI). In April, the Predator family of aircraft surpassed five million flight hours, the majority of which have occurred in combat. 

The KC-390 and E2: a fleet mix fit for New Zealand

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

Triple type certification for the E190-E2 sets a new international benchmark as Embraer highlights the credentials of the E2 as a potential passenger/VIP option for the RNZAF. A worthy complement to the KC-390 air lifter?

CJDS Charlie Lott: Engagement, innovation and ‘failing forward’

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018 

In this exclusive interview, CJDS Charlie Lott updates editor Nicholas Dynon on progress made since the launch last year of the NZDF Framework for External & Industry Engagement and what we can expect over the coming 12 months.

Into the Blue – Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies, Chief of Air Force

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

At a time of significant change for the RNZAF, Dr Peter Greener, Senior Fellow at the Centre for Strategic Studies (VUW), asks Chief of Air Force, AVM Tony Davies, what are the most important challenges that the RNZAF needs to address?

Defence Strategic Policy Statement released

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

The just-released Defence Strategic Policy Statement, writes editor Nicholas Dynon, is a stark rendering of the strategic environment, a front-footed articulation of where New Zealand stands, and a manifesto for strong investment in Defence.

Defence Minister: Big decisions not taken lightly

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

Defence Minister Hon Ron Mark suggests that the time taken scrutinising P3 replacement options has been time well spent, and that we can expect similar rigour in relation to procurement proposals to Cabinet going forward.

Defence short-changed as decisions delayed

Line of Defence Magazine, Winter 2018

Hon Mark Mitchell, National Party Spokesperson for Defence and former defence minister, writes that the recent Budget indicates major defence procurements, such as the P8 Poseidon programme, are facing an uncertain and slow-motion future.

New lease on life for RNZAF aircrew training

Defsec, 14 May 2018

New Zealand Minister of Defence Ron Mark has announced the first of four leased KingAir KA350 aircraft has been certified for use by the Royal New Zealand Air Force, marking a change in the future of aircrew training.

Chief of Army: The New Zealand Army – Present and Future

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

In this exclusive interview with New Zealand's Chief of Army, Major General Peter Kelly, Centre for Strategic Studies (VUW) Senior Fellow Dr Peter Greener asks what are the current and future challenges Army faces out to 2035?

Climate change presents multiple challenges for NZDF

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

Dr Egemen Bezci, Visiting Scholar at Massey University’s Centre for Defence and Security Studies, argues that addressing climate change poses massive challenges for the NZDF, not least climate change’s threat-multiplier effect.

Australia's defence export strategy: solid centre wrapped in hyperbole

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

Nicholas Dynon writes that Australia's recently released Defence Export Strategy is a bold statement of intent to lift the capabilities of an industry of critical national importance - and to this extent Canberra has stepped up to the plate.

Mark Mitchell: Cutbacks, Capabilities, and Acknowledgements

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

Mark Mitchell, National Party Spokesperson for Defence, writes that defence funding earmarked in the 2016 Defence White Paper is vital, yet there are ominous indicators, and avoiding cuts may prove an ongoing ‘arm wrestle’ for MINDEF Ron Mark. 

Leonardo’s C-27J Spartan: when capability matters

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

In this article, Leonardo argues the case for its multi-mission tactical airlifter, the C-27J Spartan. Designed as a true military tactical/battlefield airlifter, the C-27J is a short, austere airstrip specialist - it’s an aircraft that can reach places others can’t.

Rocket Lab’s Peter Beck and the launch of a New Zealand space age

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

In this exclusive Line of Defence Magazine interview, editor Nick Dynon chats with founder, CEO and CTO of Rocket Lab, Peter Beck, about launching satellites, thinking globally, and flying for business with no meetings planned.

Q&A: Jackson Schneider, President Embraer Defense & Security

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

In this exclusive interview with President and CEO of Embraer Defense & Security, Jackson Schneider, Line of Defence seeks an update on the KC-390 and asks what sets the swept wing turbo fan aircraft apart from its competition?

Protected Mobility Capability update

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

At a recent NZDIA member meeting in Wellington, Gillian Rodger, Ministry of Defence Integrated Project Team Lead for the Protected Mobility Capability project, outlined work packages associated with the first of the project’s three phases.

Towards an effective joint force: Joint Support Component Command

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

Dr Colin D Robinson, Visiting Scholar at Massey University's Centre for Defence and Security Studies, charts the evolution towards an NZDF Joint Support Component Command. It's an unfolding journey, requiring both structural and cultural change.

Kiwi Unicorn in the Hyatt: NZDIA attends ADM Congress 2018

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

NZDIA CEO Jennie Vickers writes that Australia’s Defence market presents massive opportunities but also risks for suppliers within New Zealand’s defence industry. How do we chart a course for success while avoiding the potential pitfalls?

Minister: cross-party support and reassurance in procurement

Line of Defence Magazine, Autumn 2018

In this exclusive article, Hon Ron Mark, Minister of Defence, writes that re-examining the Defence procurement programme is about avoiding rash purchases and making the right calls – and it will not affect P3 replacement.

KC-390: The New Generation Multimission Transport Aircraft

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

Embraer is offering their new generation multi-mission aircraft, the KC-390 Military Tactical Airlifter, as the solution to New Zealand’s Future Air Mobility Capability needs. In this profile, Embraer outlines why this new jet aircraft is a game changer.

Exclusive Interview: Ron Mark, New Zealand's Minister of Defence

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

In this exclusive Line of Defence Magazine interview, New Zealand’s Minister of Defence, Ron Mark, outlines the new Government’s priorities for Defence and how it plans to work with the New Zealand defence industry going forward.

NZDIA Looks back with satisfaction and forward with anticipation

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18 

The NZDIA's new Chair, Andrew Ford, looks back over a successful and paradigm-shifting year, providing insight into how the Association will deliver increased value to its members within New Zealand’s national security sector in 2018.

Interview: Opposition Defence Spokesperson Mark Mitchell

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

In this exclusive interview, former defence minister and current opposition defence spokesperson Mark Mitchell talks with Nicholas Dynon about his concerns over softening on defence spending, and why he’ll be keeping Government to account.

GA-ASI SeaGuardian: The flexible air surveillance solution

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

In this profile of the MQ-9B SeaGuardian, Director of International Strategic Development for Australia, NZ and South-East Asia for General Atomics Aeronautical Systems Inc (GA-ASI), Warren Ludwig, shares his perspectives on this FASC contender.

Tightening purse strings for New Zealand's defence force?

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

Robert Ayson, Professor of Strategic Studies at Victoria University Wellington's Centre for Strategic Studies, argues that a lack of cross-party consensus within the Arden government places big defence capability projects on shaky ground.

Chief of Navy Interview: The future for the Royal New Zealand Navy

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

In this exclusive interview with Dr Peter Greener, Rear Admiral John Martin, Chief of Navy, notes that it is important to turn to the future – a future focused on building a Navy that will serve the interests of the nation for decades to come.

AI and machine learning: A new kind of military intelligence

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

Evan Butler-Jones, Director, Defence Product Line, Aviation & Defence for IFS, writes that although the defence applications of artificial intelligence is a hot – and often hyped – topic, AI is more about enabling safe and efficient missions than ‘Terminator’ robots.

NZDIA Board elections: Meet the new Board

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

With elections on 6th December bringing about significant changes to the board of the New Zealand Defence Industry Association, we provide a brief profile of each member of the board for 2018 - some familiar faces and some new ones.

Victoria University expertise to benefit the NZDF

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

A new partnership between Victoria University of Wellington and the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) will see the university’s lecturers assisting the development of the country’s military leaders in the Advanced Command and Staff Course (ACSC).

Sonar technology set to expand as Callaghan R&D grant pays off

Line of Defence Magazine, Summer 2017/18

ENL Group is eyeing international defence contracts as a government grant helps its research and development programme. Callaghan Innovation says more New Zealand defence sector manufacturers have the potential to benefit from a similar R&D focus.

ADOD Industry Day a resounding success

Line of Defence, Summer 2017/18

By all accounts the first-of-its-kind Australian Department of Defence (ADOD) Naval Shipbuilding Industry Briefing in Auckland on 5th December was a great success, and it could be the first of many ADOD events held this side of the Tasman.

Contracting strategy in a Mega Project environment

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

Claire Negus, MD of Primary Delta Consulting, presented on contracting strategy at the recent NZDIA Annual Forum. In this exclusive interview, Line of Defence asks her about contracting strategies for high-stakes, big-budget, long-term infrastructure projects.

Defence updates Estate Regeneration timetable

Line of Defence, November 2017

The MoD yesterday updated its timeframe for the procurement of an NZDF Estate & Infrastructure Alliance Partner, anticipating the appointment of a Partner in November 2019. An industry engagement session is to take place this December.

The US lowers cost of military system development through COTS

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

Tim Marshall, Engineer/Sales Manager for rugged computing systems provider Unitronix writes that military commercial-off-the-shelf electronics are delivering cost-effective solutions and supporting innovation in new capabilities.

Auckland Industry briefing by Australia's CASG

Line of Defence, November 2017

In collaboration with the NZDF, NZTE, MOD and the Australian Defence Department, the NZDIA has yesterday announced that New Zealand industry is invited to attend a briefing about opportunities for involvement in Australian Defence programs.

NZ First handed Defence portfolio

Defsec Media, 25 October 2017

There has been much commentary on the New Zealand government-elect’s likely policy mix. With plenty of chatter on regional development, education, poverty, housing, the environment, etc, we’ve heard very little on Defence.

C-130J Super Hercules: Multi-mission master

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

In this profile of the C-130J Super Hercules, senior Lockheed Martin figures provide their perspectives on this latest iteration of the world’s most iconic tactical airlift platform and what it offers in the New Zealand context.

New Defence Auckland Business Hub opens doors

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

The Defence Auckland Business Hub opened its doors in September, providing Defence with a crucial foot on the ground in Central Auckland. The Hub is now home to a number of Ministry of Defence and NZDF personnel with industry-facing roles

Fuel disruption response role for new Defence Relationship Manager

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

Located at the new Defence Auckland Business Hub, NZDF Defence Relationship Manager Auckland GPCAPT Glenn Gowthorpe has been getting to know Auckland businesses and helping to resolve a ‘once in a lifetime’ fuel disruption, writes Nicholas Dynon.

Loop Technologies: beyond techn obsolescence

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

Loop Technologies has seemingly come from nowhere to gain a high profile in New Zealand’s defence industry, having been a finalist in the Minister of Defence Awards for Excellence to Industry in 2016. Line of Defence caught up with director Roger Hurst.

New sniper and anti-materiel weapons for NZDF

Defsec Media, 19 October 2017

The New Zealand Defence Force has announced that as part of its In-Service Weapon Replacement/Upgrade Programme it is buying two new weapons, the Barrett M107A1 anti-materiel weapon and the Barrett Multi Role Adaptive Design (MRAD) sniper rifle. 

Cyber Warfare: Offence, Defence and Deterrence

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

We ask Dr Joe Burton, Senior Lecturer in political science and public policy at Waikato University, about how New Zealand is positioned in relation to cyber warfare and find that among the challenges there are opportunities.

2017 Awards of Excellence to Industry Winners

Defsec Media, October 2017

The annual Minister of Defence Awards of Excellence to Industry presentation took place in Wellington on 11 October, following the NZDIA Defence, Security and Industry Forum. Defence Minister Mark Mitchell was on hand to present the awards.

A new framework for Defence – Industry partnerships

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

NZDF Chief Joint Defence Services Charlie Lott spoke at a 23 August New Zealand Defence Industry Association members meeting in Auckland about managing Defence-Industry relationships and the NZDF Framework for External & Industry Engagement.

The transformation of in-service support over the next decade

Line of Defence, Spring 2017

Military assets are getting more complex, but for some roles they are actually becoming much simpler, while delivery and support is increasingly globalised. Evan Butler-Jones of IFS looks at five changes set to transform the in-service support model.

Comment: New Zealand's defence industry unfairly targeted

Defsec Media, 13 September 2017

Activists plan to disrupt the NZDIA annual forum in October. Protest can be a blunt and disproportionate weapon, and by targeting the forum and its main sponsor, activists inflict collateral damage on the members of a vitally important New Zealand industry.

Minister Mitchell addresses defence industry

Defsec Media, August 2017

At a parliamentary reception on Thursday 10 August, Defence Minister Mark Mitchell gave addressed members of the defence industry. Senior MoD and NZDF leaders mixed with industry invitees as a further sign of increasingly open government – industry relations.

Interview: Aerostats and persistent surveillance

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

In this exclusive interview, Matt McNiel, Vice President of TCOM, a global ISR solutions provider of Lighter-Than-Air Persistent Surveillance Tethered Aerostat platforms, puts the case forward for aerostatic surveillance in the New Zealand context.

GA-ASI Celebrates 25 Years

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

General Atomics Aeronautical Systems (GA‑ASI), the leading manufacturer of Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) systems, radars, and electro-optic and related mission systems solutions, celebrated its 25th year anniversary recently at the Paris Airshow.

What can NZ’s Defence Estate Regeneration learn from Australia?

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

David Barnes, Client Director Defence & National Security at Aurecon, observes that there are worthwhile defence estate investment lessons to be learnt from across the Tasman. Among other things, early stakeholder engagement is key.

US in the spotlight during Minister Mitchell’s first Asia foray

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

A high-profile speech at the Shangri-La defence forum and a positive rapport with his Indonesian counterpart highlight Mark Mitchell’s first trip to Asia as Defence Minister, writes VUW Centre for Strategic Studies' David Capie,

Standardisation and industry engagement: Meet the new COMLOG

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

Three months into his new role, Commander Defence Logistics Command (COMLOG) BRIG Rob Krushka addresses an NZDIA Members Meeting to lay out his plans for greater efficiencies within Defence logistics and enhanced industry engagement.

New NZDIA Executive Director: Jennie Vickers

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

NZDIA's new ED sees the Association as providing the safe environment for industry and Defence to learn from each other and to build levels of trust, and that early engagement is a critical part of that trust building and supplier-customer experience. 

Update - New Zealand Defence Industry Association

Line of Defence, Winter 2017

New NZDIA Chairman Scott Arrell provides an update on the activities of the Association and some insight into its premiere event, the Defence, Industry & National Security Annual Forum, due to take place in Wellington on 10-11 October.

SurfZoneView goes operational in Kaikoura

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017

Taranaki-based oceanography company MetOcean Solutions' award-winning SurfZoneView solution was thrust into an operational role last November to aid naval beach landings as part of the evacuation of people from quake-hit Kaikoura.

Storing sensitive data securely with Synology

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017

Synology’s innovative products provide enterprise, government and military clients with secure storage, offsite replication and near-immediate data recovery, its FlashStation securing Best Choice Award at Computex 2016 in Taipei.

Project management lessons from the cold

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017 

Carlton Ruffell reviews Project Management, Denial and the Death Zone, Lessons from Everest and Antarctica by Grant Avery, and finds important project management lessons.

Shaping NZ’s airlift force for the next 40 years

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017

Dr Robert C. Owen, Professor of Aeronautical Science at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, offers his thoughts on the airlift options available to the RNZAF. 

Airbus A400M: Far side of the world

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017

It’s big, it’s quiet, and it stops on a dime. A Royal Air Force Airbus A400M Atlas is in New Zealand, flown from its home in Oxfordshire to the far side of the world in a long-haul bid to woo potential customers, including the RNZAF.

A cyber security capability for NZDF

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017 

The Defence Capability Plan earmarks an investment on new cyber warfare capabilities for the NZDF. But with laws of cyber conflict remaining unclear, all is quiet on the ‘offensive’ capability front. 

Reading Between the Lines – Capability Plan 2016

Line of Defence, Autumn 2017

Dr Peter Greener, Senior Fellow at Victoria University Wellington’s Centre for Strategic Studies, looks at what the Defence Capability Plan tells us about ANZAC frigate replacement and airlift.

OPV a new option for maritime surveillance

Line of Defence, November 2016

Due for delivery in early 2017, Reiner Stemme Utility Air-Systems' radically innovative optionally piloted vehicle is set to change the face of medium-altitude long endurance surveillance.

Defence White Paper a constructive way forward

Line of Defence, November 2016

Former Defence Minister Hon Dr Wayne Mapp places the 2016 Defence White Paper within strategic context, observing that it represents continuity but also recognises a changing environment.

DWP – What does it mean for future capability?

Line of Defence, November 2016

Dr Peter Greener, Senior Fellow at Victoria University Wellington’s Centre for Strategic Studies breaks the New Zealand 2016 Defence White Paper down into possible capability purchases.

Opportunities for Industry: NZDIA Annual Forum

Line of Defence, November 2016

NZDIA Chair Bernie Diver talks 2016 DWP, positive partnering between Defence and industry, the opportunities to flow from increased Defence funding, and the 2016 NZDIA Forum.

Defending NZ: The heart of the 2016 White Paper?

Line of Defence, November 2016

Robert Ayson, Professor of Strategic Studies at Victoria University Wellington, argues that the 2016 Defence White Paper provides for a projection of power beyond NZ’s maritime domain. Read more

New ice-strengthened RNZN tanker announced

Defsec SitRep, 18 July 2016

HMNZS Endeavour to be replaced with new ice-strengthened tanker. Built by South Korean firm Hyundai Heavy Industries, the new ship is expected to be delivered in 2020 at a cost of $493 million. Read more

What to Expect from the Defence White Paper

Line of Defence, April 2016

Dr Peter Greener comments that the White Paper's intent is to focus on the more expensive capabilities with govt. remaining committed to maintaining current levels of capability into the future. Read more

NZ's Defence White Paper playing catch up

Defsec SitRep, 17 June 2016

Line of Defence Magazine editor notes media commentary in relation to the level of spending earmarked in the DWP, arguing that cyber warfare is one area where we're playing 'catch-up'. Read more

Strategic relationship - Defence and Industry

Line of Defence, April 2016

NZDIA Chair Bernie Diver says that significant progress has been made to improve the working relationship between Industry and Defence in both the acquisition and through life support spectrums. Read more

Nightfox Virtual Terrain Image System for RNZAF

Line of Defence, April 2016

Aircraft pilot systems training company AMST was recently awarded a contract to provide the NZDF with a cutting-edge training solution for night operations for its helicopter and transport aircrews. Read more

Optimising NZ Industry in NZ Defence

Line of Defence, April 2016

Debbie Howarth, Director of NZDF Industry Engagement, says future successful partnering between with industry will enable alternative ownership and operating models for provision of Defence capabilities. Read more

SRM and Australia’s Guided Missile Frigates

Line of Defence, April 2016

Managing contractual relationships according to SRM is about putting charters in place, looking at behaviours, building trust, putting the right structures in place, says Jennie Vickers, Chair of IACCM. Read more

Understanding the dark art of drone detection

Line of Defence, April 2016

As military-developed drones have paved the way for the harnessing of drone technology by nefarious actors, this in turn has fuelled the frantic race to operationalise and commercialise drone detection. Read more

Hi-Tech Award recognition for MAS Zengrange

Line of Defence, April 2016

MAS Zengrange has been selected as a finalist in the New Zealand Hi-Tec awards for its Mini-DRFD POP π M4.0 Remote Initiation (RI) capability for explosive events within the maritime environment. Read more

Launch of a new force in NZ business media

NEWS: Nov 11, 2015

DEFSEC media announces the launch of its new defence and national security business magazine, Line of Defence, in late February 2016. Read more

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