Test & Measurement

AMRDEC Technologies to Improve Air and Missile Defense

From Left to Right: Keith Godwin, Sam Curtis, Tony Rainoldi (Photo Credit: Joseph Mendiola)

Engineers at the U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC) are working on a trio of technologies to explore improving existing air and missile defense designs at lower costs and in less development time. Each of the technologies was developed out of a demand from the warfighter. Investment in current missile weapons is high so the Army prefers to improve what is in use instead of fielding new items. Also, soldiers have more trust in machinery they have used and experienced.

Posted in: News, Aerospace, Defense, Software, Test & Measurement
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Drop of Mock Nuclear Weapon Is First of New Flight Tests

An F-16C makes a pass over Nevada’s Tonopah Test Range after a March test of a mock nuclear weapon as part of a Sandia National Laboratories life extension program for the B61-12. Teams will spend months analyzing the data gathered from the test. (Photo by John Salois)

From a distance, the drop of a mock nuclear weapon — containing only non-nuclear components — was a mere puff of dust rising from a dry lake bed at Nevada’s Tonopah Test Range. However, it marked the start of a new series of test flights vital to the nation’s B61-12 weapon refurbishment program. Initial data showed the test was a success, said officials at Sandia National Laboratories, which runs Tonopah. For months, teams will be analyzing a wealth of data they collected from this first of a qualification test series planned over the next three years.

Posted in: News, Defense, Test & Measurement
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NASA Puts Dummies to the Test for Airplane Safety

Engineer Greg Dean checks dummies before a fuselage drop test at NASA Langley. (NASA Langley/Kathy Barnstorff)

Ten crash test dummies buckled into seats in a cut-out section of a regional jet fuselage will soon help NASA and the FAA develop new crashworthiness guidelines for future airplane designs. It is part of the FAA's efforts to address how to better assess the airworthiness of new transport planes that contain nonmetallic components. The test also included baggage in the cargo hold to see how the luggage interacts with the subfloor separating it from the dummies.

Posted in: News, Defense, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Test & Measurement
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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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Pressure Mapping as a Research & Development Tool

Discover how pressure mapping technology can help drive ROI in your R&D process. The R&D process often involves making significant investments on test & measurement technology, like pressure mapping, to discover new opportunities for advancement. This new eBook explains how pressure mapping can be used to capture actionable interface pressure data in a variety of R&D applications.

Posted in: White Papers, White Papers, Sensors, Test & Measurement
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New Lab Helps Boeing Detect Aircraft Flaws

Missouri S&T researchers installed this microwave and millimeter-wave laboratory at Boeing’s South Carolina R&D center. (Boeing/Missouri S&T)

Researchers at Missouri University of Science and Technology and The Boeing Company established a new nondestructive evaluation (NDE) laboratory that uses millimeter-wave technology to improve the detection of potential flaws in coatings, surfaces, and materials.

Posted in: News, Aerospace, Defense, Instrumentation
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Simulating and Analyzing Flow for an Air-to-Air Refueling System

Long-range bombers may have missions halfway around the world. Fighter jets may have to stay in the air longer than their relatively small fuel tanks will allow, or may find they have exhausted their fuel unexpectedly, such as during supersonic flight or evasive maneuvers. In these situations, large tanker aircraft are deployed that carry sufficient fuel to refill several smaller aircraft in a single mission (Figure 1). The task of injecting volatile jet fuel from one aircraft to another while both are moving at high speed and altitude is fraught with risk.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Test & Measurement, Computer simulation, Refueling, Aerodynamics, Freighter aircraft
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Using High Bandwidth Oscilloscopes to Analyze Radar and Electronic Warfare Systems

Whether for multi-channel analysis, or for wider analysis bandwidth in a measurement, high bandwidth oscilloscopes offer an alternative to traditional spectrum and signal analyzers for both pulsed RF aerospace/defense and I/Q vector modulated communications application measurements. Signals with spectral content beyond 1 or 2 GHz are now being created to support the higher resolution requirements in radar systems and to move the vast amounts of information in new communications systems.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Communications, Wireless, Defense, RF & Microwave Electronics, Test & Measurement, Data exchange, Oscilloscopes, Radar, Military vehicles and equipment
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Developing and Testing Electronic Control Units for Electric Drives

Air framers are looking to build more eco-friendly and economical aircraft, and they are turning to electric drives. One growing trend is to build more electrical aircraft by replacing pneumatic and hydraulic systems with electric actuators. Electric drives, therefore, will play an important role in the aircraft of the future. This paper examines the current state of technology for developing and testing electric drives.

Posted in: White Papers, White Papers, Aeronautics, Electronics, Electronics & Computers, Test & Measurement
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The Effect of Substrate Emissivity on the Spectral Emission of a Hot-Gas Overlayer

Analytic model demonstrates the impact of emitted background radiation on the molecular gas spectrum.

Recently, in operando optical investigations of high temperature solid oxide electrochemical cells (SOECs) have gained significant traction with several research groups motivated by a need to directly correlate electrochemical performances of SOECs with their associated and complex electrode processes. These techniques (including Raman spectroscopy, ambient x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy, near-infrared thermal imaging, and Fourier transform infrared emission spectroscopy) have demonstrated a significant advantage over traditional, indirect experimental methods by providing direct, non-invasive information in real time along with high temporal, spatial, and/or molecular resolution.

Posted in: Briefs, TSP, Aerospace, Defense, Test & Measurement, Spectroscopy, Emissions, Test procedures, Thermal testing
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