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Covert Infrared Battlefield Combat Taggants

Modern warfare often involves poorly defined battle lines accompanied by multilevel fire support systems that can deliver firepower with high precision and devastating lethality from a long distance. The ability to immediately and accurately discriminate through sight between friend and foe is of great importance to military operations for effectively destroying hostile forces while preventing fratricide. This ability is even more crucial for irregular and unconventional warfare such as anti-terrorism operations where US forces often engage enemy combatants well entrenched in urban settings or rugged terrains at night. In such battlefield conditions, using conventional daylight and thermal imagery often exceeds the ability to accurately identify targets as friend or foe, and more reliable battlefield identification methods are needed.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Photonics, Imaging, Identification, Military aircraft, Military vehicles and equipment
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Small Form Factor Strategies for Military Embedded Systems

The proliferation of unmanned military vehicles tasked with critical communications and radar requirements drives the need for powerful data acquisition and signal processing products that must fit into increasingly tighter spaces. New industry standards meeting these needs offer smaller circuit boards and enclosures, optical gigabit serial links, and advanced thermal management strategies. With new resources found in the latest processors and FPGAs, system designers can now create powerful, compact systems surpassing performance levels achievable only a few years ago.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Electronics & Computers, Electronic equipment, Radar, Thermal management, Data acquisition, Autonomous vehicles, Military vehicles and equipment, Unmanned aerial vehicles
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Toward Smarter Manufacturing and Materials

At the U.K.’s new Advanced Manufacturing Research Center, engineers and innovators have at their disposal some of the world’s most advanced design and manufacturing assets for precision engineering.

by Richard Gardner

For well over a century the word “Sheffield” has been synonymous with high-quality steel products, ranging from cutlery to heavy engineering products for bridges, railways, and aircraft. Following many years of industrial decline as much traditional large-scale manufacturing departed in the direction of low-wage Asian economies, the region suffered accordingly.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Production engineering, Composite materials
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More Electric, Integrated Fuel Systems

Global warming and environmental friendliness considerations have recently been key for multiple global industries. In the commercial aviation industry, reduction of aircraft emissions, including CO2 and noise, is an urgent priority. Both aircraft and aircraft engine manufacturers are striving to improve design to accommodate the needs of commercial airlines. Engine manufacturers in particular have worked long and hard to improve each engine component, e.g., compressors, turbines, combustors, etc.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Emissions control, Electric motors, Engine components, Fuel pumps, Commercial aircraft
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RF FPGAs for Multi-Function Systems

A dynamically reconfigurable, wideband programmable RF FPGA transceiver will provide reduced lifecycle cost, reduced redesign cost, and service for multiple DoD platforms, while maintaining near-optimal performance for each application.

State-of-the-art RF integrated circuits (ICs) achieve high performance via custom circuit elements with dedicated signal paths for application-specific functions, but long design lead times and non-recurring fabrication costs increase time-to-market for new applications and limit reuse. The key to developing an RF FPGA (radio frequency field-programmable gate array) is to provide RF switching components with very low insertion loss and high isolation that can be integrated with high-performance RF circuits in silicon germanium (SiGe) and gallium nitride (GaN) technologies, and integrating these circuits in a reconfigurable topology to allow an RF FPGA to perform a wide variety of functions.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, RF & Microwave Electronics, Radio equipment, Switches
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3D Software Helps Development of Vehicle-Mounted Defense Systems

L-3 Communications Linkabit (Melbourne, FL) develops defense communications and electronic warfare systems to protect soldiers and save lives on the battlefield. A division of L-3 Communications, the sixth-largest defense company in the United States, Linkabit focuses on developing systems that safeguard troops in the field by obscuring visibility, jamming radar signals, intercepting communications, and disrupting infrared transmissions.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Computer software / hardware, Product development, Protective systems, Military vehicles and equipment
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Vacuum Regulators to Simulate Altitudes

Equilibar
Fletcher, NC
828-650-6590
www.equilibar.com

To support air assets, the US Navy’s Altitude Laboratory in Maryland is tasked with testing On-Board Oxygen Generating Systems (OBOGS). The lab has three hypobaric chambers to assess mechanical breathing simulators at altitudes up to 60,000 feet. The altitude in the chambers is simulated by precisely regulating the vacuum pressure.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Scale models, Aircraft operations, Aerodynamics
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Electronic Attack Capability on Unmanned Aircraft

Northrop Grumman Corp.
Falls Church, VA
703-280-2900
www.northropgrumman.com

Northrop Grumman Corporation has integrated and employed an internal miniature electronic attack payload on the Bat unmanned aircraft, marking the first time that such a system was used in operation on a Group III (small, tactical) system.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic equipment, Cyber security, Unmanned aerial vehicles
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Armored Response Vehicle for Bomb Disposal Teams

Lenco Industries
Pittsfield, MA
413-443-7359
www.LencoArmor.com

Lenco Industries has introduced the BearCat® EOD “BombCat” armored response vehicle for bomb disposal teams and EOD and IEDD first responders. Designed with input from veteran explosive ordinance disposal experts, the Bomb- Cat accommodates a large tactical robot like the Andros F6A, which can be readily accessed using a fold-down ramp at the curb side door or deployed from a hydraulically controlled platform located at the front of the vehicle.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Hazards and emergency management, Military vehicles and equipment
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Software for Material/Structural Characterization Across Length Scales

Synthetic and natural micro-architectures occur frequently, and multiphase functionally graded composites are becoming increasingly popular for applications requiring optimized/tailored material properties. When dealing with such materials computationally, one issue that immediately arises is the analysis of the mechanical properties of macroscopically inhomogeneous multi-scale structures. The bulk response of these structures can be determined by performing full finite element analysis (FEA); that is, with the entire geometry discretized at a resolution high enough to accurately model the smallest length scale of interest. However, these full models may easily exceed hundreds of millions, or potentially billions, of degrees of freedom, and solving problems of this magnitude may only be possible with the use of supercomputing facilities.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Information Technology, Computer software / hardware, Composite materials, Materials properties
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