Touch and Go

Avionics developments are changing life in the cockpit and at airborne work stations.

by Richard Gardner

Since the digital revolution changed forever the pilot’s working environment, innovators and suppliers of cockpit systems have strived to provide a continuous stream of new developments and products that offer increasingly automated solutions to what has to be done to fly and land an airplane safely.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Human machine interface (HMI), Displays

Sandwich Cores for the Future

The search for lighter weight, stronger materials to construct airplanes and spacecraft remains as important as ever. But it takes a long time for new materials in aerospace structures to make their way into production designs. Capital is one reason; it is harder to take risks when it costs so much to develop new composites. Another is the long approval process from regulatory agencies due to safety constraints.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Composite materials, Foams

Making AESA Radar More Flexible

A modular, building-block approach brings greater design flexibility to Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar technology, simplifying system integration, and permitting rapid first-line repair with no downtime using standard off-the-shelf components.

Until recently, AESA radar was utilized almost exclusively by prime aerospace contractors within their own proprietary systems. These customized solutions were relatively costly and time-consuming to manufacture, and not reconfigurable to alternative uses.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Radar

Developing Secondary Surveillance Radar Automated Test Equipment

Unlike primary radars, Secondary Surveillance Radar (SSR) calculates the range and azimuth of a target, such as an aircraft, using a bidirectional communication link to gather information. Engineers use SSR in both military and civil aviation, with the former incorporating an identifying friend-or-foe system.

Posted in: Articles, Aerospace, Defense, Radar

Aircraft Casting Alloy

IBC Advanced Alloys Corp.
Wilmington, MA

IBC Advanced Alloys Corp. will continue production of components for Lockheed Martin's F-35 Lightning II Electro-Optical Targeting System (EOTS).

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, Casting alloys, Aircraft

War-Game Simulation Software

MASA Group
Paris, France
+33 1 55 43 13 20

Military training tools must work effectively with reduced staff numbers and simulate a large variety of situations. Following 12 years of collaboration, the French Armed Forces have expanded their use of SWORD, a constructive simulation software package developed by MASA Group.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, Computer simulation, Computer software / hardware, Education

VPX Chassis for Missile System

Manchester, NH

Using a hit-to-kill approach, a US Army anti-ballistic missile system called Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) is designed to shoot down short, medium, and intermediate ballistic missiles in their terminal phase. The interceptor missile, developed by Lockheed Martin, carries no warhead, but relies on the kinetic energy of the direct impact to destroy the incoming threat.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, Missiles