NASA Funds All-Electric Aircraft Research

The University of Illinois is leading a NASA-funded project to develop an all-electric aircraft. The project, called the Center for Cryogenic High-Efficiency Electrical Technology for Aircraft (CHEETA), focuses on electrically driven propulsion systems for commercial aircraft.

Posted in: INSIDER, News, Aviation, Defense

Broadband 1.2- and 2.4-mm Gallium Nitride (GaN) Power Amplifier Designs

The US Army Research Laboratory (ARL) has been working with Raytheon to design efficient, broadband, linear, high-power amplifiers and robust, broadband, low-noise amplifiers for future adaptive, multimodal radar systems. Raytheon has a high-performance, W-band, gallium nitride (GaN) fabrication process and a process design kit (PDK) that ARL used to design low-noise amplifiers, power amplifiers, and other circuits for future radar, communications, and sensor systems. After the first set of ARL and Raytheon designs was submitted for fabrication, test designs of broadband Class A/B power amplifiers were developed. While these designs did not get fabricated in the initial effort, they serve to demonstrate the performance, bandwidth, and capability of this GaN process and could potentially be fabricated in the future.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic Components, Power Management, Power Supplies, Mechanical Components, RF & Microwave Electronics, Semiconductors & ICs

Electrical Characterization of Crystalline UO2, THO2 and U0.71TH0.29O2

Tracking and identifying radiation sources in the age of nuclear proliferation and well- resourced non-state actors is a national priority. Current neutron detection methods favor large detector volumes and long data collection times. Additionally, portable neutron detection methods have persistent problems with low signal-to-noise (small pulse height) and require large applied voltages.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Semiconductors & ICs, Data Acquisition, Detectors, Sensors

The FACE™ of Military Modernization

U.S. rival countries have been rapidly modernizing their militaries, with publicized advances that pose credible challenges to U.S. supremacy in all aspects of warfare: air, land, sea, space and cyberspace. On January 19, 2018 Secretary Mattis discussed the National Defense Strategy and emphasized the need to modernize key capabilities to address these threats. He stated: “To keep pace with our times, the department will transition to a culture of performance and affordability that operates at the speed of relevance. Success does not go to the country that develops a new technology first, but rather, to the one that better integrates it and more swiftly adapts its way of fighting. Our current bureaucratic processes are insufficiently responsive to the department's needs for new equipment. We will prioritize speed of delivery, continuous adaptation and frequent modular upgrades.”

Posted in: Articles, Aeronautics, Aerospace, Aviation, Data Acquisition, Defense, Mechanical Components, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Software

ONR Short Pulse Research, Evaluation and non-SWaP Demonstration for C-sUAV Study

The OSPRES (ONR Short Pulse Research, Evaluation and non-SWaP) program performed fundamental work in the areas of Silicon (Si) and Gallium Nitride (GaN) based photoconductive switch development, measurement of HPM waveform dependent effects on small unmanned aerial vehicle (sUAV), adaptive design of experiments, noise injection, RF coupling to sUAV's, minimally dispersive wave theory, and positive feedback non-linear transmission line (NLTL) development.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Electronic Components, Power Management, Power, Antennas, RF & Microwave Electronics

Coating Technology Enables Effective Missile Countermeasures

Heat-seeking missiles have been in use against both rotorcraft and fixed wing aircraft since the mid-1950s, and countermeasures to deceive their guidance systems have been employed for nearly as long. Typically, countermeasures operate by generating a strong infrared signature which confuses the missile tracking system. At the heart of these systems is some form of powerful infrared emitting source. Often this source requires optical coating(s) to perform wavelength filtering needed for optimum operation. However, both the mechanical configuration of the thin film filter coatings used and the operating extremes to which they are subjected present challenges for the manufacturer.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Manufacturing & Prototyping, Coatings & Adhesives, Materials, Machinery, Mechanical Components

Multi-Agent RF Propagation Simulator

A desirable interface between multi-agents is through over-the-air RF connections that include not only the intended direct RF communications paths but also highly variable multi-ray propagation, range attenuation, external RF influences, and near-earth influence. These influences are all difficult to predict, control, and repeat in an outdoor environment. This outdoor testing, as has traditionally been done, is extremely expensive while simultaneously providing fewer data points than more controlled events and the testing events are generally not repeatable.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Communications, Data Acquisition, Antennas, RF & Microwave Electronics, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Simulation Software, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement, Testing Procedures

Helicopter Load Sensor

Sensor Technology Ltd.
Banbury, Oxon, UK
01869 238400

A newly developed intelligent wireless helicopter load sensor has a choice of two displays, offering simple or comprehensive data read outs, so that users can select the best option for their operational needs.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aeronautics, Aviation, Communications, Defense, Batteries, Power Supplies, Displays/Monitors/HMIs, Imaging, Optics, RF & Microwave Electronics, Data Acquisition, Sensors

Active Protection System

RADA Electronic Industries Ltd.
Netanya, Israel

RADA Electronic Industries Ltd., a company that specializes in the development and production of tactical land radar for force and border protection, recently announced that following the announcement by General Dynamics of a positive Army Requirements’ Oversight Council (AROC) decision, Phase II of the Iron Fist Light (IFL) Active Protection System (APS) for the Bradley Fighting Vehicle is moving forward. The project is a joint venture between General Dynamics’ subsidiary, General Dynamics Ordnance and Tactical Systems, together with Israel Military Industries (IMI), which was recently acquired by Elbit Systems. RADA is the provider of the radars to the Elbit/IMI IFL system.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, RF & Microwave Electronics

Matrix-Free Assisted Laser Desorption Ionization Using Metal-Organic Frameworks

Matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization (MALDI) is a soft ionization technique that is widely applied in the characterization of large biomolecules using various mass spectrometry (MS) analyzers, specifically, time-of-flight (TOF) analyzers. The MALDI process involves the deposition of an analyte solution onto a metal substrate before the addition of a matrix. The matrix/analyte dry spot is exposed to a UV laser, and the laser energy that is absorbed by the matrix/analyte is converted into heat energy that initiates charge transfer, which results in the desorption of the matrix and analyte molecules in ionized form. The positive ions are then accelerated through a vacuum into MS analyses.

Posted in: Briefs, Aerospace, Defense, Materials, Metals, Mechanical Components, MEMs, Data Acquisition, Sensors, Inspection Equipment, Instrumentation, Measuring Instruments, Monitoring, Test & Measurement