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Sandia Labs Takes Modern Approach to Evaluating Nuclear Weapons

Sandia National Laboratories is transforming how it assesses nuclear weapons in a stockpile made up of weapons at different stages in their lifecycles — some systems that have existed for decades alongside those that have undergone life extension programs. Back when the United States was developing new nuclear weapon systems, weapons typically were either in production or were retired before they aged much more than about 10 years. The U.S. today is no longer designing new systems, so scientists and engineers refurbish weapons to ensure the stockpile will function as intended and that weapons are safe, secure and reliable.

Posted in: News, Defense, Monitoring, Test & Measurement

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Next-Generation Fire Support Systems Boost Lethality

Soldiers view live-stream full-motion video from unmanned aerial vehicles via a smartphone. They access 3-D digital maps to send precision target coordinates. Soldiers are now relying on these advanced technologies to improve lethality and maintain battlefield dominance. These are among the improvements that will be embedded in future fire-support capabilities because the Army has started testing four upgraded systems for its Field Artillery units to provide more accurate and timely fire support to maneuver formations.

Posted in: News, Communications, Wireless, Data Acquisition, Defense, Electronics & Computers

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Navy Chemists Develop Field-Repairable Transparent Armor

Research chemists at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) have developed and patented a transparent thermoplastic elastomer armor to reduce weight, inherent in most bullet-resistant glass, while maintaining superior ballistic properties. Thermoplastic elastomers are soft, rubbery polymers converted by physical means, rather than a chemical process, to a solid. Consequently, the solidification is reversible and enables damaged armor surfaces to be repaired ‘on-the-fly’ out in the field.

Posted in: News, Defense, Composites, Materials, Plastics

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Radar Signal Generation with a High-Performance AWG

Radar ensures the safety and security of the skies, and lives depend on it. That’s why radar design measurements call for high frequency, realistic stimulus signals. You need to create these complex radar test signals at high frequencies, but what’s the best solution?

Posted in: White Papers, White Papers, Aerospace, Defense, Electronics & Computers, RF & Microwave Electronics

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The 3D Printing Landscape: Then and Now

Frequently used as a design validation and prototyping tool in its early days, the 3D printer now supports a much wider range of applications, from shape-conforming electronics to the creation of printed living tissue. Tech Briefs spoke with industry expert Terry Wohlers about 3D printing's emerging possibilities.

Posted in: News, News, News, Aerospace, Consumer Product Manufacturing, Custom & Contract Manufacturing, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling, Implants & Prosthetics

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Commando Helicopter

Leonardo-Finmeccanica Rome, Italy +39 06 32473313www.leonardocompany.com/Leonardo-Finmeccanica announced recently that the first AgustaWestland AW101 Merlin Mk4 successfully completed its maiden flight at its Yeovil facility in southwest England. Leonardo is upgrading 25 Royal Navy Merlin Mk3/3A aircraft to Merlin Mk4/4A standard as part of the Merlin Life Sustainment Programme (MLSP) contract. The MLSP contract is valued at £330 million and was awarded in January 2014 by the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD). Deliveries of aircraft will start in 2017 and continue through to 2020 with the work being performed at Leonardo’s Yeovil facility.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense

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Touchscreen Tablet Mission System

Inzpire Lincolnshire, UK +44 1522 688 231www.inzpire.comGECO, from UK-based Inzpire, is a military grade rugged touchscreen tablet mission system that is currently in frontline operational use with the British Armed Forces, and is also fielded internationally on 15 different aircraft types including fighter planes and attack and support helicopters.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense

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M1 Abrams Tank Engine Updates

Honeywell Aerospace Phoenix, AZ 602-365-3099https://aerospace.honeywell.comThe Honeywell-powered M1 Abrams tank has been a mainstay of the U.S. military’s heavy armored forces for more than 25 years. Over that time, global defense strategies and battlefield engagements have changed, meaning the M1 Abrams now requires more power, extended mission range, and greater dependability.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense

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Aircraft Automation System

Aurora Flight Sciences Manassas, VA 703-369-3633www.aurora.aeroAurora Flight Sciences is breaking ground in the world of automated flight through its work on the Aircrew Labor In-Cockpit Automation System (ALIAS) program. Aurora recently demonstrated automated flight capabilities with ALIAS flying a Cessna Caravan through basic maneuvers under the supervision of a pilot.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense

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Pulse Analysis Techniques for Radar and Electronic Warfare

Pulsed signals are widespread in radar and other electronic warfare (EW) applications, and they must be accurately measured for manufacturing, design of countermeasures, and threat assessment. Pulse measurements are an especially challenging area for signal analysis due to a combination of factors. Fortunately, many of the improving signal processing and analog-digital conversion technologies behind the generation of complex pulse environments also enable new techniques for effective pulse analysis.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Mathematical analysis, Measurements, Radar, Military vehicles and equipment

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