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Warhead Life-Extension Program Passes Key Milestone

The program to extend the life of the W80 nuclear warhead recently achieved a significant milestone when the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) gave passing grades to the plans to refurbish certain components and the proposed approach to developing component cost estimates. Passing the milestone confirms that the life extension program (LEP), dubbed the W80-4 LEP, remains on track. The refurbished warhead will be paired with a new cruise missile that is being developed in parallel by the U.S. Air Force, making this the first life extended warhead to be implemented in a new delivery system since the start of the Stockpile Stewardship Program more than 25 years ago.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Materials, Monitoring, Test & Measurement
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AgilePod Flies on U.S. Air Force MQ-9 Reaper

In March 2018, the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center’s Sensors Program Office, working jointly with the AFLCMC Medium Altitude Unmanned Aerial Systems Program Office, sponsored three demonstration flights of an MQ-9 Reaper with AgilePod. The flights were a first for AgilePod on an Air Force major weapon system, and were the result of collaboration between AFLCMC and the Air Force Research Lab.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Data Acquisition, Defense, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors
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Army Researchers Teach Robots to be Better Teammates for Soldiers

Researchers at the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Research Laboratory and the Robotics Institute at Carnegie Mellon University developed a new technique to quickly teach robots novel traversal behaviors with minimal human oversight. The technique allows mobile robot platforms to navigate autonomously in environments while carrying out actions a human would expect of the robot in a given situation.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, Robotics
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Heavy Ground Testing Puts Airbus’ BelugaXL On Track for First Flight

In preparation for its upcoming maiden flight, Airbus’ first BelugaXL is now in its heavy ground test phase – which focuses on the highly modified airframe for this next-generation oversize cargo airlifter.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense, Test & Measurement
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Researchers Push Limits in High-Temp, Polymer Additive Manufacturing

Researchers at the Air Force Research Laboratory’s Materials and Manufacturing Directorate are “turning up the heat” in the field of polymer additive manufacturing. In conjunction with researchers at NASA’s Glenn Research Center and the University of Louisville, the team successfully printed the highest-temperature capable, reinforced polymer composite parts using additive manufacturing. Consisting of a high temperature thermoset resin infused with carbon fiber filaments, this state-of-the art material breakthrough sets the stage for next generation, cost-efficient Air Force manufacturing needs.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Defense, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Composites, Materials, Plastics
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Superstrong Al Alloys May Change Aerospace Manufacturing Processes

Purdue University researchers have developed a superstrong material that may change some manufacturing processes for the aerospace and automobile industries.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Metals
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Laser-Made Parts Could Transform Aircraft Industry

Researchers are manufacturing steel and titanium aircraft parts using laser metal deposition technology. It can be used to 3D-print parts from scratch or to fix existing parts with a bond that is as strong as, or in some cases, stronger than the original.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Defense, 3 D Printing & Additive Manufacturing, Rapid Prototyping & Tooling
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NASA UAV Flies Alone in Public Airspace

NASA’s remotely piloted Ikhana aircraft successfully flew its first mission in the National Airspace System without a safety chase aircraft on Tuesday. Flying these large remotely piloted aircraft over the United States opens the doors to all types of services, from monitoring and fighting forest fires, to providing new emergency search and rescue operations. The technology in this aircraft could, at some point, be scaled down for use in other general aviation aircraft.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense
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Streamlining Machinery and Production Lines With HP Multi Jet Fusion 3d Printing

Machinery and production line component production has typically been served with traditional processes such as CNC machining and injection molding. However, as industries strive to find greater efficiencies and add more value for their customers, machinery and production line manufacturers and runners are looking for ways to enhance and optimize how they produce components–in order to offer unique/customized solutions at low cost to their internal or external customers, drive greater production line efficiencies with lightweight, high performance parts, and maximize equipment uptime. 3D printing opens up a world of new opportunities for machinery and production line component production–both for original and spare parts.

Posted in: White Papers, White Papers, White Papers, Aeronautics, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Robotics
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NASA CubeSats Head to Mars

NASA has achieved a first for the class of tiny spacecraft known as CubeSats. The MarCO-A and MarCO-B CubeSats are designed to trail InSight on the way to Mars, aiming to relay back data about InSight as it enters the planet's atmosphere and attempts to land.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Communications, Defense
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