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Advancing the Use of Beryllium Bearing Materials for Unmanned Platforms

Aerospace and defense platforms are often regarded as the earliest adopters of new materials and processes technologies. Materials test programs provide validations of material supplier property claims, as the physical tests are performed and data is analyzed. Resultant material “design allowables” are developed and compared to the performance envelopes for the intended application(s). The quality of simulation software and the developed knowledge base that design and strength engineering personnel use for analyzing materials in the intended product design and environments have improved dramatically in the last decade. This has primarily been based on the efficiency and availability of computing capacity for complex simulations.

Posted in: Articles, Simulation Software

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Testing Reality in an Increasingly Complex Design Space

Digital simulation tools have transformed the designing and testing of new aircraft, as well as the way they are manufactured and sustained. by Richard Gardner The universal adoption of digital 3-D design tools has truly changed forever the way that advanced products are created, from original concept studies, development, testing, and manufacturing, right through the lifecycle to maintainability, future enhancement, and long-term support. The ability to share detailed specifications and test data between all partners worldwide, but with controlled access as required throughout the supply chain, enables large and small suppliers to work to common standards and requirements, maintaining the same data accuracy across the network. This has not only saved valuable time, helping to reduce costs, but has brought about higher standards of product quality and, importantly, more traceability, providing a clear picture for project managers who have access in real time to progress at all levels.

Posted in: Articles, Simulation Software

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Unlocking the Power of Ceramic Matrix Composites

Faster, lighter, stronger, hotter – words anyone working on military product development is all too used to hearing. In a world where advanced computer modeling and simulation packages are helping engineers optimize new product designs to increase performance, oftentimes the limiting factors to meeting spec are the mechanical and thermal restrictions inherent to currently available engineering materials. Ceramic matrix composites, or CMCs, provide an entire world of new thermo-mechanical properties, allowing engineers the ability to unlock the potential of some of their most advanced high temperature and high speed designs.

Posted in: Articles, Ceramics, Composites

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Wireless Sensing — the Road to Future Digital Avionics

A look at the comparative performance of wired and wireless sensors, type of wireless sensors & interfaces, frequency performance, protocols, network topologies, and qualification standards. The performance of avionics systems is dictated by the timely availability and usage of critical health parameters. Various sensors acquire and communicate the desired parameters. In current scenarios, sensors are hardwired and the number of sensors are growing due to automation, which increases the accuracy of intended aircraft functions.

Posted in: Articles, Aviation, Sensors

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New RF Strategies for Software Radio

Software defined radio system engineers can now exploit new technology to perform digital signal processing much closer to the antenna than ever before. Various strategies include the latest wideband data converters, monolithic receiver chips, compact RF tuners, new FPGA families, and remote data acquisition modules using gigabit serial interfaces. Each approach presents benefits and tradeoffs that must be considered in choosing the optimal solution for a given application.

Posted in: Articles

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Tracking WiFi Signals to Passively See Through Walls

University College London (UCL) researchers are investigating passive radar technologies that can see through walls using WiFi radio waves. The novel research required a real-time, passive (non-cooperative) wireless target detection demonstration system capable of tracking moving bodies through walls and obstacles. Much like traditional radar systems, the approach still relies on detecting the Doppler shifts in radio waves as they reflect off moving objects. However, unlike traditional radar systems that actively transmit radio waves, the passive system relies on the existing WiFi signals that already swamp our airwaves. The complete lack of spectrum occupation and power emission ensures the radar is undetectable, making it ideal for military or security surveillance in urban settings.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Articles, Wireless

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Detecting Trace Levels of Explosives Using Vibrational Sum Frequency Spectroscopy

VSFS technology can also be used to check for explosive traces on packages and suitcases. Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Virginia The threat of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) to human life is grave, and countering this threat is a high priority for force protection during military operations. Remote, standoff detection of in-place IEDs would be a significant step forward in mitigating the threat posed by these weapons.

Posted in: Briefs

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