12 Oct 22. Echodyne Showed Longer-Range 4D Radar, EchoShield at AUSA. Echodyne, the radar platform company, showed the newest addition to its market-leading portfolio of radars – EchoShield at AUSA. Designed from the ground-up to set a new price-performance standard for mid-range radars, EchoShield is an advanced software-defined multi-mission radar for a wide variety of commercial, defense, and government use cases.
EchoShield’s development has been informed by hundreds of customers and applications across multiple industries. The radar’s architecture builds upon the field-proven success of Echodyne’s proprietary metamaterials electronically scanned array (MESA®) radars that are in use across a wide range of applications, such as counter-UAS, border and base security, force protection, critical infrastructure security, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance, UAV detect and avoid, and autonomous ground vehicles.
A pulse-Doppler cognitive 4D radar, EchoShield combines ultra-precise electronically scanned array (ESA) beamforming and real-time dynamic waveform synthesis to deliver sub-degree tracking accuracy on hundreds of objects across a broad 3D field of view. EchoShield’s cognitive search capabilities integrate onboard or offboard data stores to adapt and direct radar resources when and where required in order to deliver the right data and detail at the right time. Whether using the radar’s significant onboard processing capabilities or ingesting data-rich range-doppler spectrograms into offboard compute, EchoShield’s SDK enables deep integration and multi-sensor fusion.
EchoShield is designed to be software-optimized to mission profiles that align powerful dynamic radar resources with unique customer requirements to deliver superior radar performance. Based on market demand, the initial software release prioritizes a counter-UAS mission and excels at detecting, tracking, and classifying any uncrewed aircraft, including low slow and small drones even in dense urban environments. Further releases will match radar resources with customer demand in dozens of applications and markets.
“Radar is a fundamental sensor for a wide range of commercial and government applications, but achieving high performance at reasonable cost, size, weight and power (C-SWaP) has always been a challenge,” said Eben Frankenberg, CEO of Echodyne. “Our customers have challenged us with certain radar performance attributes and EchoShield has been designed to meet these demanding requirements. Our customers are lining up for first units and already discussing production volume, so we’re very pleased with the market reception.”
EchoShield is designed to operate in the Ku band, with radiolocation service at 15.7-16.6 GHz and radionavigation at 15.4-15.7 GHz, and is commercially exportable. Its features include:
- 130° azimuth x 90° elevation field of regard (fully customizable)
- 0.5° tracking accuracy in azimuth and elevation, with very low track splitting/dropping
- Powerful UAV classification with low false-alarms and near-zero false-negatives
- Cognitive search capabilities integrate onboard or offboard data
- Average tracking ranges for counter-UAS mission:
- Group 1 (-20 to -10 dBsm): 2.7 to 4.8 km
- Group 2 (-10 to -5 dBsm): 4.8 to 6.4 km
- Group 3 (-5 to 5 dBsm): 6.4 to 11.4 km
“Our breakthrough Metamaterial-ESA technology unlocks a level of beamforming previously only available with large ultra-expensive AESA’s with hundreds of channels,” said Tom Driscoll, CTO of Echodyne. “EchoShield combines this precise beamforming with modern fully-adaptive cognitive-radar approaches and intelligent control software, and the result is a radar with best-in-class detection, tracking, and classification performance.”
Eben Frankenberg, Founder and CEO of Echodyne was voted BATTLESPACE Businessman of The Year 2022.
10 Oct 22. Hellfires find life-support as US Navy surface-ship weapon. As the US Army moves away from its stalwart AGM-114 Longbow Hellfire missile to make way for the Lockheed Martin AGM-179 Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM), the Hellfire is finding continued life in the US Navy (USN) Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) programme.
While the army approved the JAGM for full-rate production on 30 August, Northrop Grumman has remained on track to deliver weapons package sets to the USN LCS programme that include the Longbow Hellfire, company spokesperson Fernando Catta-Preta confirmed to Janes ahead of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) 2022 conference held in Washington, DC, from 10 to 12 October.
Northrop Grumman delivered one of the weapon packages earlier in 2022 to the USN, Catta-Preta said, and four more missile packages are under contract for deliveries during 2023. (Source: Janes)
12 Oct 22. ABRAMS-X Next-Generation MBT Technology. General Dynamics Land Systems is presenting a preview of what the next-generation Main Battle Tank may look like and its capabilities in its Abrams-X technology demonstrator being debuted at AUSA (Booth 800).
Tim Reese, Director General Dynamics AUSA US Business Development, shared that “Abrams-X represents what is possible today that could be incorporated into a possible follow-on to the latest current M1A3 SEP V3 and V4 updates”.
This future design replaces the manned turret and locates the entire crew of three (reduced by one crewman) forward in the hull. This move is facilitated by the incorporating an automatic loader for the XM-360 derived 120mm main gun with a ported muzzle brake. Observation and targeting relies on two 360 degree panoramic roof mounted sights which include multi-sensor next generation day, thermal, and laser ranging.
It is likely the demonstrator takes advantage of digital networking and integration of platform sensors and data interlacing to offer crewmen , access to panoramic situational awareness including helmet mounted displays. Given the common crew location and the digital backbone of the KATALYST Next Generation Electronic Architecture (NGEA) information from the sights and, in fact, all sensors and data inputs can be accessed by each crewman.
“KATALYST”, Reese explained, “is designed as an open architecture that can more easily accept upgrades and the incorporation of new systems and technologies into the platform as they become available. It also allows the platform to act as a key node on a networked battlefield and to integrate with manned and unmanned, both ground and air assets.
An obvious lethality upgrade over current MBT’s is the mounting of a 30mm chain gun remote weapon station on the turret roof rather than the traditional .50 heavy machine gun. The XM914 30mm not only enhances the ability to engage a range of soft and light armored targets but, using Programable Airbust ammunition, offers both a more effective response to anti-tank teams and a counter-UAS capability.
In addition, ABRAMS-X uses a modular configuration which can incorporate situational-awareness enhancements, threat-detection/warning, counter-measures, active-protection and other sub-systems. The approach permits the application of various capabilities including the adoption of future technologies with relative ease.
Another major change in ABRAMS-X is the adoption of a hybrid power pak. It employs an advanced Cummings diesel engine at the primary power source with the addition of electric batteries in a parallel configuration. Here electric supplies power in low demand periods like stationary operation, in silent watch as well as offering exportable power. Diesel drives the tank with electric available to augment power needs at high demand periods. The vehicle as configured meets current range demands with 50 percent less fuel but the design could be altered to increase this range. The new power approach also contributes to reducing the overall tank weight, reversing a trend in MBT’s which potentially impacts on their suitability where transportation infrastructure, particularly roads and bridges, is less developed.
Reese suggested “Our objective in presenting our technology demonstrators is to provide the Army with a true physical hardware representation that they can see, touch, and evaluate representing capabilities that can be provided today.” (Source: Armada)
11 Oct 22. Northrop-Grumman Jackal UAS for Penetrating Defenses. The limited air speed of most current Unmanned Aerial Systems, both ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance) and Loitering Munitions (LM), have limited capability to respond rapidly to a mission which is at a distance. Northrop-Grumman’s Jackal UAS/LM, part of the company’s exhibit at AUSA (Booth B460) is being developed and is designed to address this.
“Jackal, unlike other drones,” a company spokesperson explained “is equipped with a turbojet engine that allows it to reach air speeds of over 300 mph (482 kmph) with an operational range of over 100 km. A typical mission profile would allow Jackal to be launched toward an area of interest or against a target of opportunity with assurance that it will be able to be on target in minutes. The drone payload capacity of 10 lbs (4.5 kg) can accept a range of mission options including ISR, EW (electronic warfare), or a precision warhead. Its use of a “tube-launcher” allows it to be employed from various ground, naval, or airborne platforms
The internally funded research and development is being conducted in association with AeroVironment. Jackal can be programmed prior to launch using the most appropriate track including low-level waypoint navigation to reduce possibility of detection. Even at its maximum operational range Jackal has fifteen minutes loiter time. It is designed for day or night use and adverse weather operation.
In addition to being able to quickly respond to the need to gain eyes-on a distance are the Jackal’s high-speed and low flight profile makes it ideally suited for penetrating an opponent’s forward defenses to observe and/or attack deeper priority targets. It is feasible in this role for IRS Jackal’s and LM Jackal’s to cooperate in identifying and neutralizing radar, air defenses, and command systems.
Currently, Jackal flight testing and demonstration is proceeding with emphasis on validating command, control and communications. (Source: Armada)
12 Oct 22. US Army seeks defense against ‘kamikaze’ drone threats seen in Ukraine. The U.S. Army wants ideas from industry on how to protect against attacks from so-called kamikaze drones, a loitering weapon that is featuring heavily in the war in Ukraine. Russia and Ukraine have used thousands of loitering munitions since the start of the war. The explosive-carrying drone is known as a kamikaze weapon because of its one-way mission. One of the more well-known examples is AeroVironment’s Switchblade, which the Pentagon has supplied to Ukraine.
Col. Mike Parent, division chief for acquisition and resources in the Army’s Joint Counter-Unmanned Aircraft System Office, said the threat of loitering munitions is a high concern for his team.
“The one-way attack is something that we have been told again and again by [combatant commands] and the services that this is something that is evolving,” he said during an Oct. 12 briefing at the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual conference in Washington. “We must, therefore, evolve with it.”
The service is poised to issue a formal request for ideas, or white papers, from industry in the next week or two, Parent said, noting that the aim is to move quickly to respond to proposals and demonstrate the technology. The work will focus on countering threats from Group 3 drones, a class of small UAS that weigh between 55 and 1,320 pounds.
“We have an aggressive timeline,” he said. “We’re going to put that request for white papers out and we’re going to expect industry to come back very quickly.”
The Army is the U.S. Department of Defense’s executive agent for counter-UAS work and the Joint Counter-Small Unmanned Aircraft Systems Office, created in 2019, works closely with the other military services to shape requirements.
Maj. Gen. Sean Gainey, JCO director, said during the same Oct. 12 briefing that defending against one-way attacks is just one piece of the Pentagon’s layered approach to countering threats from UAS. The war in Ukraine has validated the strength of that approach, he added.
“I think what we’re learning is pretty much what we already knew . . . it takes a layered approach,” he said. “You leverage your air defense systems, you leverage your counter-UAS [electronic warfare systems] and you leverage whatever counter-UAS kinetic effectors you have to be able to get after the threat. Because the threat ranges.” (Source: Defense News Early Bird/C4ISR & Networks)
11 Oct 22. SAFRAN Optics One and Orolia – Advanced Optics & Rescue Location Devices. SAFRAN Optics One and its recently acquired subsidiary Orolia Defense and Security are presenting their product expertise in advanced electro-optics, Personnel Recovery Beacons and Resilient Position, Navigation and Timing (PNT) technologies at AUSA 2022 (Booth 2209).
Optics One has been providing the US Army its Laser Target Locator Module (LTLM) II since 2016. The system offers enhanced performance, reliability and is both simpler to operate and, at 3.1 pounds, lighter than previous systems.
The company is also a reliable teammate with major US platform integrators like BAE Systems, Raytheon, Bell Boeing and others supplying its technologies in both aerospace and a range of defense applications. Its product line encompasses systems like CTAM compact rail-mounted multi-functional laser, night vision enhancement and visual augmentation, and targeting and reconnaissance systems like STENNA/JTAC for precise fires direction.
Orolia, recently joining the SAFRAN Group, has just received initial production authorization to provide its PRSS1b Personnel Recovery Devices to the US Army, shared Michael Stout Director of Government Program.
PRSS1b, which will be exhibited at AUSA, is the first rescue recovery beacon to utilize Second Generation Cospas-Sarsat signaling which offers faster and more accurate location for downed aircrews or other personnel. The PRSS1b provides Army personnel access to the space-based international, humanitarian search and rescue system which is effective in even the most remote regions.
10 Oct 22. RIPSAW M3 RCV-Light. Textron Defense, which supplied its M5 RIPSAW to the US Army for its concept trials using Remote Combat Vehicles – Medium (RCV-M), is now focused on the upcoming requirements for a Remote Combat Vehicle – Light (RCV-L).
Dave Phillips, Senior Vice President explained that “M3 RIPSAW capitalizes on not only the M5 experience but also Textron’s Unmanned Aerial Systems and Naval Unmanned Surface Vessels.” An M3 Tech Demonstrator will be exhibited at AUSA (Booth 3024).
Reflecting its projection of the Army requirements M3 is intended to emphasize adaptability to mission kits to take-on various roles. With this in mind it has a flat-deck of 85 sqft that can accept a range of payloads within its 5000 lb capacity. Its hybrid diesel-electric power offers both optimum range and exportable power capabilities.
In its view and experience an important capability which a RVC must include is the ability to negotiate “wet-gaps”. Doing so enhances it utility to the ground commander and expands the operational options. With this in mind M3 RIPSAW is able to traverse water obstacles without preparation.
Demonstrating its mission flexibility Phillips shared “during the exhibition we will change the mission package on the M3 each day. These will include on Day 1 the EOS R400S 30mm auto-cannon (forward) and CACI Counter-UAS system (aft). Day 2 will see the Kongsberg CROWS-J with capability to launch a VTOL UAS aft. Finally, Day 3 with find the CROWS with the Arnold 2.75 inch FFAR rocket launcher. (Source: Armada)
12 Oct 22. For the first time the WB GROUP presented the FONET MK2 digital vehicle communication platform and the SILENT NETWORK low-emission military communication system at AUSA exhibition in Washington D.C. At AUSA, a number of advanced solutions of the WB GROUP in the field of unmanned aerial vehicles are shown: the FlyEye reconnaissance system and Warmate loitering munitions. The WB GROUP shows also and TOPAZ integrated combat management system, PERAD tactical MANET radio, which is the base of its low-emission SILENT NETWORK communication system, and the COMP@N software-defined radio.
The U-GATE dismounted observation and command system presented at AUSA uses augmented reality technology, which increases the situational awareness. It can be used to visualize the battlefield and enables full control over the loitering munitions or an unmanned weapon systems.
FONET MK2 is a modified and new multi-core variant of one of the most popular and most dynamics vehicle integration platform system. FONET MK2 is a set of modular and scalable devices and software that integrates the vehicle’s electronic equipment and enables the internal voice communication or complete data quality of service for battlefield management system deployment. FONET MK2 is compatible with every radio available on the market and enables communication and data exchange with other vehicles.
Vehicles equipped with the WB GROUP system can operate in automated command or fire control systems. The modular concept of the system allows you to choose the configuration for each vehicle. FONET MK2 is backward compatible with all existing FONET systems. The new modules and terminals can be used in vehicles already equipped with the WB GROUP’s system.
FONET MK2 features enhanced security and configuration, faster data processing which increases the number of available functions: radio channels, security protocols, voice control or data streams from unmanned systems.
Along with the FONET MK2 system, a family of modular terminals, configurable and equipped with graphic displays were introduced, including single or dual domain crew stations. FONET MK2 has been adapted to operate in multi-clause environments that connect networks with different levels of secrecy. This is particularly important in the case of command vehicles, including those with the NATO Secret clause.
SILENT NETWORK is also presented at AUSA. It is a low-emission, distributed and scalable combat communication network. It complements or replaces interoperable communication based on high-emission tactical radios.
SILENT NETWORK ensure communication and information advantage while significantly reducing the electromagnetic signature. By using unmanned aerial vehicles the range and impact of the communication system can be increased. The low power and range of the personal radio is compensated by UAV onboard routers.
SILENT NETWORK provides an information advantage while reducing the electromagnetic signature. By using an airborne router the power of the radio can be reduced by more than 70%. SILENT NETWORK allows to ensure communication in any area (buildings, forests or mountains) via the UAV-equipped transmitter. The introduction of FlyEye-based SILENT NETWORK provides users with simultaneous air reconnaissance, communication node and access to combined fire. SILENT NETWORK reduces the load carried by soldiers on the battlefield by eliminating of backpack radios.
11 Oct 22. Guns of Ukraine draw eyes at Washington arms fair. For years, the war on terror dominated displays at the massive Association of the U.S. Army trade show with heavily armored vehicles and ways to protect soldiers from makeshift explosives. But this week, Ukraine’s fight to repel Russia’s invasion highlights new stars of the battlefield, such as small drones or in-demand artillery.
Those weapons aren’t just symbols of Western support and Ukraine’s resistance. They’re also big business for defense firms who have their sights set on the multibn-dollar plans at a time when capitals around the world want to bolster their arsenals following the invasion. About 23,000 attendees of the annual conference, some from foreign military procurement agencies, came to the show floor to network and check out the products on display.
At AeroVironment’s booth, one noteworthy weapon was the Switchblade 300, the 6-pound, tube-launched kamikaze drone that the Ukrainian army for months has used to strike Russian targets. Since the U.S. placed Switchblades in Ukrainian hands this spring, its soldiers have used it to batter Russian troops and equipment. That includes fuel trucks, personnel carriers, machine gun nests, trench positions and dismounted infantry.
A few feet away sat its bigger brother: the Switchblade 600, boasting a longer range, greater loitering time and a larger warhead capable of taking out armored targets. When the heavier-duty loitering munition reaches Ukraine in the coming weeks, the two weapons could give the embattled nation another boost — and even more firepower to drive invading Russian troops from their territory.
“They’re hitting Ukraine very, very soon,” said Charlie Dean, AeroVironment’s vice president of sales and business development. When Switchblade 600s arrive in significant quantities in Ukraine, “this battlefield is going to change significantly. It’s going to turn quickly.”
AeroVironment’s hand-launched RQ-20 Puma, a drone used by the U.S. Army that Dean said Ukraine is also using to conduct reconnaissance before artillery strikes, was also on display.
As the war enters a new phase, the American company is preparing to ship its Telemax robots to Ukraine, which can conduct bomb disposal missions or perform other jobs too dangerous for humans.
The U.S. and its Western allies are sending bns of dollars’ worth of equipment that Ukrainians can easily use, and they are training Ukrainian forces on the more sophisticated technologies. Former Warsaw Pact countries have shipped off aging Russian-made materiel from their arsenals, which has put them in the market for modern replacements.
Because the M777 howitzer’s performance on Ukraine’s battlefields is spurring interest from overseas, talks to restart production are ongoing between its manufacturer BAE Systems and the U.S. Army, the Wall Street Journal reported. That wasn’t one of the armaments BAE had on display at AUSA, but it did show off the Advanced Precision Kill Weapon System, a slim, four-barreled launcher for laser-guided rockets that the U.S. used in Afghanistan and is now sending to Kyiv.
“Based on what we’re hearing, it’s very effective over there, doing better than we thought it might in some ways,” said BAE’s Jim Miller, vice president of business development for combat mission systems.
L3Harris Technologies mounted the launcher on a pickup truck and dubbed it Vampire, which, Miller said, sparked attention and inquiries about what other vehicles could host it.
The proliferation of drones on the battlefield is putting a sharper focus on efforts by the U.S. Army and firms like BAE, which makes armored vehicles, to add protection from top-attack threats. BAE’s engineers are working on technologies to spot, track and recognize drones as well as “new armor solutions,” according to Miller
“There is an increasing threat of unmanned aerial systems — everything on the battlefield can be seen and attacked,” he said. (Source: Defense News Early Bird/Defense News)
10 Oct 22. Epirus, General Dynamics unveil integrated counter-electronics system Stryker Leonidas. Technology company Epirus has joined with General Dynamics Land Systems to introduce an integrated mobile high-power microwave array ground combat vehicle, unveiled at the Association of the U.S. Army’s (AUSA) Annual Meeting & Exposition in Washington, DC. The Stryker Leonidas vehicle was recently field demonstrated at a US government testing site, successfully disabling individual drone targets and swarms of drones, says a joint press release.
The integration of Leonidas, a powerful HPM phased array, with Stryker, the US Army’s largest combat vehicle fleet, brings counter-electronics capabilities to the frontlines by offering a layered defense solution for the manoeuvre force.
Leonidas’ counter-swarm effectiveness fills a pressing short range air defense (SHORAD) capability gap for the joint force as the threat of swarming drones continues to endanger troops and civilians overseas and in the homeland.
The continued evolution of adversaries’ swarming drone capabilities is matched by Epirus’ software-weaponeering capabilities, which allows the system to continually intake new data, rapidly update its waveforms and expand its magazine depth for enhanced SHORAD mission assurance across all domains. With its open architecture, Leonidas can integrate with a range of Command-and-Control (C2) platforms to detect, track and defeat the increasing deployment of drone technology by adversaries and non-state actors.
“Adding Leonidas’ counter-electronics capabilities to the Stryker combat vehicle provides the joint force with unmatched mobile protection from the continuously evolving threat of weaponized drones,” said Gordon Stein, Vice President of U.S. Operations at General Dynamics Land Systems.
“The integration of Epirus’ Leonidas system with General Dynamics Land System’s Stryker vehicle provides the U.S. Army a cost-effective, maneuverable and tested defense capability against current and emerging threats to the warfighter,” said Leigh Madden, Chief Executive Officer of Epirus.
Stryker Leonidas is the latest edition to Epirus’ suite of HPM systems – along with the company’s ground-based Leonidas system for surface-to-air defense and Leonidas Pod, a first-of-its kind, mobile and compact HPM system. When deployed in tandem, the Leonidas family of products create a layered counter-swarm and counter-electronics field of protection. Epirus is also actively exploring future capabilities to defend against next-generation threats. For more information visit: www.epirusinc.com (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
10 Oct 22. Honeywell 360 Display to Provide Vehicle Operators with Greatly Enhanced Situational Awareness. The wearable display provides seamless situational awareness for rugged ground vehicle operators and pilots in low-visibility conditions. Honeywell: HON) today introduced the Honeywell 360 Display, a head-mounted display that provides significantly enhanced situational awareness for operators of military vehicles used in hazardous conditions with reduced visibility. The Honeywell 360 Display simulates natural vision with a high-resolution, ultra-low-latency view of what is happening around the vehicle, allowing users to safely maneuver around potential risks.
The Honeywell 360 Display is a wearable, stereoscopic, mixed-reality head-mounted display that uses a series of sensors and exterior cameras to feed information directly to the headset. It improves the user’s situational awareness by increasing visibility and reducing the need to consult additional instruments. It combines outside camera feeds with sensor and tactical information to provide a 360-degree field of view that can integrate multiple databases including terrain, traffic and weather. The lightweight Honeywell 360 Display has been designed for comfortable, extended use, and in testing has shown to not cause the type of nausea sometimes experienced in other head-mounted systems.
“The advanced situational awareness the Honeywell 360 Display provides helps enable the battlefield of the future, providing operators and pilots with real-time data to improve their reaction time and to make timely, well-informed decisions when needed most,” said Ricky Freeman, president, Defense and Space, Honeywell Aerospace. “This focus on innovation and user experience reflects our commitment to modernize defense capabilities and improve the safety of the men and women who use this equipment.”
For operators of ground vehicles often used in challenging environments, the Honeywell 360 Display improves overall situational awareness and reaction speed by increasing visibility and reducing the need to consult fixed displays. Operators can use the lightweight helmet-mounted display to combine a seamless real-time, mixed-reality outside view with critical sensor augmentation.
The Honeywell 360 Display has been tested extensively on ground vehicles, including in rough terrain. Future applications of the technology may include use in aircraft, to provide the capability of a heads-up display (HUD) in wearable form. The 360 Display includes a wearable visor or helmet-mounted display that uses augmented reality to provide civilian or military pilots with a high-resolution 360-degree view of terrain and visual cues outside the cockpit.
10 Oct 22. Curtiss-Wright Introduces SOSA™ Aligned NVIDIA Ampere GPU Processor with a Configurable Gen4 PCIe Switch 3U OpenVPX™ VPX3-4936 GPU module delivers 17.7 TFLOPS and 68 dense/136 sparse Tensor TOPS, expanding Curtiss-Wright’s family of high-performance AI/ML solutions
Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a leading supplier of rugged ISR and EW processing modules and systems, introduced the VPX3-4936, its first 3U OpenVPX GPGPU processor module to feature the combination of NVIDIA’s Ampere GPU and a configurable Gen4 PCIe Switch. The NVIDIA Ampere architecture offers a significant boost in performance and efficiency over the previous NVIDIA Turing™ generation, including more flexible concurrent execution of floating point and integer streams. The Ampere device’s third generation Tensor cores deliver up to 4x acceleration of AI/ML algorithms and its next generation RT cores and CUDA core architecture provide 2x performance compared to the previous generation. While delivering close to 18 TFLOPS FP32 peak performance and 68 dense/136 sparse Tensor TOPS, the NVIDIA Ampere also significantly improves power efficiency, yielding an extremely efficient 154 GFLOPS per Watt. The module’s PCIe Gen4 architecture also doubles the host interface bandwidth, eliminating data throughput bottlenecks. Pin-compatible with Curtiss-Wright’s Turing architecture VPX3-4935, the VPX3-4936 enables system designers to boost math-intensive processing algorithms without increasing size, weight, and power (SWaP). The board’s PCIe architecture also supports Non-Transparent Bridging (NTB) and daisy chain options for system flexibility.
The rugged VPX-4936 module is designed in compliance with the U.S. Army’s C5ISR/EW Modular Open Suite of Standards (CMOSS) and is aligned with the SOSA Technical Standard to support compute-intensive ISR and EW systems. This module is ideal for use in applications that require significant computational performance, such as the accelerated processing of tensor/matrix computations needed for deep learning neural network inferencing used in deployed artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) systems. Example applications include ISR, EW, High-performance RADAR, SIGINT, EO/IR, sensor fusion, and autonomous platforms
“The VPX3-4936 enables system developers to leverage more complex AI and signal processing algorithms and applications to support compute intensive ISR applications on deployed MOSA systems,” said Chris Wiltsey, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions. “We continue to expand our SOSA aligned product portfolio to deliver the most comprehensive range of open standards based system elements for EW and ISR applications, with the highest performance GPU, DSP, and FPGA modular solutions.”
Complete System-Level HPEC Solutions
The VPX3-4936 module is fully interoperable with Curtiss-Wright’s broad family of SOSA aligned and non-SOSA aligned 3U OpenVPX solutions. For example, SWaP-constrained systems can pair a single VPX3-4936 with the Intel® Xeon® D processor-based CHAMP-XD3 DSP engine, which together can augment the powerful sensor processing capabilities of Curtiss-Wright’s Xilinx® FPGA-based transceiver modules.
To download the VPX3-4936 product sheet go to https://www.curtisswrightds.com/products/computing/gpgpu/3u-vpx/vpx3-4936.
10 Oct 22. Apache Version 6.5 concept would feature ITEP engine.
Boeing is looking at what capabilities the Apache could field in the future, with the type expected to stay in service for years to come. US defence prime Boeing showcased its next-generation Apache Version 6.5 concept model during the AUSA 2022 event in Washington, DC, as the company continues the development path of a platform that first entered military service 36 years ago. The Version 6.5 concept would feature the Improved Turbine Engine Program (ITEP) engine being developed by the US Army for aviation assets, providing an increase in power generation and output, allowing for improved loadouts for emerging weapons sets and sensors.
In 2019 General Electric‘s aviation subsidiary won a potential $517.4m engineering and manufacturing development contract to provide a new turbine engine for the US Army’s Apache and Black Hawk helicopters.
Providing an update into its range of fixed and rotary-wing wing programmes on 10 October, Boeing officials said that the Apache would be the US Army’s “principle attack helicopter” over the next 25-30 years, with the most recent ‘E’ variant numbering 650 units manufactured to date. Around 1,260 Apache models of all variants are operational around the world.
The Version 6.5 concept, previously known as the V6X, is Boeing’s step towards seeing what sort of capabilities the variant beyond the E model could feature, which would also seek to take advantage of the so-called Modular Open Systems Approach to enable rapid upgrades to platform and sub systems during service.
Boeing officials told Army Technology that the Version 6.5 Apache concept would be envisaged to be networked through the Link 16 system, a NATO standard. In early October, US defence satellite communications company Viasat sold its Link 16 tactical data link business for L3Harris Technologies for $1.96bn.
Apache export successes
In September, Poland announced plans to acquire 96 AH-64E Apache attack helicopters as part of continued efforts to modernise its armed forces. The move is part of the country’s Kruk programme to update its rotary attack capabilities. (Source: army-technology.com)
12 Oct 22. Elma’s Successful Demonstrations of SOSA Aligned Systems Emphasize Significant Growth in Open Standard Ecosystem. Elma Electronic recently demonstrated several successful examples of SOSA aligned platforms that incorporate multiple industry partner products, showcasing the progress and success that open standards are achieving to support true innovations of the Department of Defense’s (DoD) directive of a modular open standards approach (MOSA).
These multi-partner platform initiatives help to show how open standards, and in particular SOSA, are helping to accelerate system development, thereby meeting the goals of faster time to deployment. Available for viewing during AUSA 2022 are the following live demonstrations aligned to the SOSA Technical Standard 1.0:
- A CompacFrame development platform with 10, 40 & 100 Gb Ethernet throughput for true high-speed Ethernet performance across the entire system
- AI-based object detection and recognition platform showing the power of the SOSA architecture to perform very fast processing of streaming video as well as enable deep learning through NVIDIA technology
- A rugged CMOSS ATR platform supporting VICTORY and MORA architectures, with a standard A-kit vehicle envelope (SAVE) mounting tray and a 12-slot 3U OpenVPX backplane
Some of the demos, which debuted at the 2022 FACE & SOSA Technical Interchange Meeting in September, will also be on display during the AOC 2022 show, from October 25-27, in Interface Concept’s Booth #107. Other successful SOSA aligned demonstrations that have been developed with Elma and its partners include a VITA 48.8 air flow-through development platform and a 12-slot E-Frame platform that greatly accelerates EW and SIGINT system development.
Partner companies included across the different demonstrations include Antara Teknik, Behlman Electronics, Concurrent Technologies, EIZO Rugged Solutions, Interface Concept, Kontron and Spectranetix.
Also on hand at AUSA will be prototypes of a new SOSA aligned VNX+ card and backplane. VNX+ (VITA 90) is the emerging open hardware standards for smaller footprint applications where VPX is not small enough and ruggedization is still required.For more information, please visit https://www.elma.com/en/capabilities/architectures/sosa, contact sales at or call (510) 656-3400.
12 Oct 22. Sensor solutions for future equipment successfully presented . To show customers, suppliers and partners what innovative approaches HENSOLDT has in the field of Artificial Intelligence (AI) supported and networked sensor solutions, the company hosted a series of hands-on demonstrations and presentations as part of its Innovation Day this year. Topics such as information superiority in contested and complex scenarios through integrated signals intelligence, the digitisation of land forces and HENSOLDT’s contribution to the Eurofighter’s new capabilities and roles showcased HENSOLDT’s role as a technology driver and platform-independent sensor solutions house.
“The Russian invasion of Ukraine marks a turning point in the history of the European community of values. German foreign, security and European policy must now change in order to further secure our freedom, our democracy and thus also our prosperity in the future. We also want to make our contribution here,” said Celia Pelaz, Board Member, Chief Strategy Officer and patron of the Innovation Day. “In order to support our customers in fulfilling their mission under the new conditions, HENSOLDT must not only permanently drive innovation. We also have to make sure that, for all our innovative strength, we work cost-efficiently in order to remain competitive.”
For a long time, HENSOLDT has been using intelligent algorithms and artificial intelligence in its sensors and at the platform sensor fusion level, such as in the area of digital radar and SETAS 360-degree all-round vision and is therefore able to ensure data sovereignty and permanently increase sensor performance. For this, data sparsity is continuously improved and latency reduced. With system-level cloud AI, information superiority is ensured with multisource and multi-intelligence applications and solutions.
10 Oct 22. Curtiss-Wright Introduces First SOSA Aligned A-PNT Module with Integrated ALTNAV and Support for the pntOS Operating Environment. New VPX3-673A OpenVPX™ module delivers MOSA solution for trusted PNT information in environments with limited or denied GPS.
Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a leading supplier of Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) based solutions engineered to succeed, today introduced the VPX3-673A, the first rugged module that delivers an Assured Position, Navigation and Timing (A-PNT) solution that includes both Alternative Navigation (ALTNAV) and the pntOS architecture. ALTNAV, a space-based commercial system, is currently being evaluated by the U.S. Army as an alternative/complementary source of PNT information on the battlefield. As an open source, government-owned plug-in architecture for building integrated PNT sensor-fusion applications, pntOS significantly reduces the time and effort required to develop algorithms and add support for new sensors. The VPX3-673A is a rugged 3U OpenVPX form factor module compatible with the U.S. Army’s CMOSS suite of standards and aligned to the SOSA Technical Standard 1.0.
“Curtiss-Wright is a leader in the development of high performance MOSA based solutions that deliver complementary A-PNT sources in the battlefield,” said Chris Wiltsey, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions division. “With the introduction of the VPX3-673A module, the first CMOSS/SOSA aligned solution to support both ALTNAV and pntOS, we reinforce our commitment to fielding the highest performance, most cost-effective technologies for providing trusted position, navigation, and timing data in a GPS contested or denied environment. This rugged CMOSS/SOSA aligned A-PNT card is designed to ingest positioning and timing data from multiple sensors and output consistent and trusted timing and navigation information to the warfighter.”
At the heart of the VPX3-673A is a low noise Chip Scale Atomic Clock (LN-CSAC), with intelligence provided by a Xilinx® MPSoC. These devices are complemented by an ALTNAV receiver and a 10-degree of freedom Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU). The board supports an internal GPS module capable of both SASSM and M-CODE, or an external GPS via an easily accessible front panel connector. The VPX3-673A communicates PNT information using standard VICTORY data messages in compliance with the CMOSS Mounted Form Factor (CMFF) architecture.
Designed to meet the SOSA radial clock profile SLT3x-TIM-2S1U22S1U2U1H-14.9.2-1, the VPX3-673A also acts as system wide timing master by producing and distributing reliable, phase aligned, clock signals. The source is user selectable from multiple options, including the LN-CSAC, GPS, ALTNAV or external sources via the Ethernet backplane or coax connectors. Additionally, this module supports NTP/PTP protocol. In compliance with the SOSA radial clock profile, the VPX3-673A is capable or outputting 11 radial clocks on the backplane and one radial clock on the coax connector. If more clock channels are required, multiple VPX3-673A modules can be daisy-chained together.
To download the VPX3-673A product sheet please visit https://www.curtisswrightds.com/products/computing/a-pnt/vpx3-673a.
10 Oct 22. Innovative 5-Slot VPX Chassis Delivers Integration “Glide Path” for SOSA Aligned Solutions. New PacStar® VPX Smart Chassis is designed to fit into SAVE enclosure alongside a PacStar 400-Series 4-Slot Smart Chassis comms system, facilitating future transition to full CMOSS/SOSA aligned hardware solution.
Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a leading developer and supplier of advanced Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) communications solutions for the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), has debuted an innovative MIL-rugged 3U OpenVPX™ 5-slot chassis enclosure that shares a common mounting solution with its popular PacStar 400-Series 4-Slot Smart Chassis for PacStar 400-Series Modules, widely used today in numerous U.S. Army deployments.
With ~50,000 PacStar 400-Series Modules and Chassis currently fielded by the DoD, the new PacStar VPX Smart Chassis enables system designers to rapidly and cost-effectively integrate CMOSS/SOSA aligned OpenVPX plug-in-cards via the same transportation and mounting solutions used by PacStar 400-Series tactical battlefield communications products. The PacStar VPX Smart Chassis is designed to fit into half the space claim of a Standard A-Kit Vehicle Envelope (SAVE) enclosure, the Army’s standard approach for fielding communications systems at the tactical edge. This innovative “glide path” solution for easing the deployment of SOSA aligned and CMOSS based solutions provides the system designer with the flexibility to transition to CMOSS/SOSA hardware as needed. For example, a SAVE enclosure can today be populated with two individual 4-slot PacStar 400-Series Smart Chassis hosting 400-Series network and communications modules, or the enclosure can be populated with a combination of one 4-slot PacStar 400-Series Smart Chassis and one 5-slot PacStar VPX Smart Chassis. Later, as CMOSS/SOSA VPX equivalents become more readily available, both halves of the SAVE enclosure can be populated with PacStar VPX Smart Chassis. Whether on current ground vehicles, air frames, or platforms of the future, this approach also enables each chassis in the SAVE enclosure to support separate networked security enclaves.
What’s more, Curtiss-Wright MOSA solutions, including CMOSS/SOSA aligned OpenVPX hardware, can be supported with PacStar IQ-Core Software, a comprehensive management software application designed for secure, tactical, and distributed network management. This single-pane-of-glass software is ideal for managing wide area networks (WAN), edge devices, and CMOSS systems, especially in disconnected, intermittent, and limited (DIL) environments – providing a comprehensive tactical infrastructure view that enables the U.S. Army’s Data-Centric vision.
“U.S. Army leadership is seeking a physical architecture for rapidly and cost-effectively deploying MOSA solutions and is increasingly turning to rugged MOSA-based hardware standards, such as CMOSS and SOSA, to speed communications and processing capabilities at the tactical edge while meeting performance and environmental requirements,” said Chris Wiltsey, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Curtiss-Wright Defense Solutions division. “Our new PacStar VPX Smart Chassis represents a breakthrough solution that complements tactical communications and CMFF missions. It enables our customers to leverage the advanced CMOSS/SOSA aligned technologies – for which Curtiss-Wright is a recognized industry-leading supplier – and deploy them alongside our latest PacStar tactical communications technologies at the tactical edge. This approach delivers a significant cost savings to the system integrator as they migrate to CMOSS, while also reducing program risk for the DoD.”
About the PacStar Smart VPX Chassis
The PacStar Smart VPX Chassis provides the highest level of SOSA alignment available today. Its 5 slots support SOSA Technical Standard 1.0 profiles, including but not limited to the following:
- 3U Radial Clock PICP: SLT3x-TIM-2S1U22S1U2U1H-14.9.2-n
- I/O-Intensive SBC: SLT3-PAY-1F1F2U1TU1T1U1T-14.2.16
- 3U Data / Control Plane Switch PICP: SLT3-SWH-6F1U7U-14.4.14
- I/O-Intensive SBC: SLT3-PAY-1F1F2U1TU1T1U1T-14.2.16
- 3U Payload PICPs: SLT3-PAY-1F1U1S1S1U1U2F1H-14.6.11-n
Ensuring flexibility for future systems upgrades is key to the design of the PacStar Smart VPX chassis.
10 Oct 22. Anduril Industries, a leader in AI, autonomy, and unmanned systems, today announced its Mobile Sentry, a ruggedized, mobile platform that uses artificial intelligence for highly accurate, persistent autonomous ground or air awareness, anywhere. Mobile Sentry is among the tech on display at Anduril’s AUSA booth, #4443 Hall C.
Mobile Sentry leverages AI-enabled edge processing, continuous 360 monitoring and a variety of radars and sensors to autonomously identify, detect and track objects of interest in a given environment. It can be positioned and set up in under 20 minutes by one operator, and is easily transportable.
Mobile Sentry builds on the success of the Sentry Tower, which is deployed along U.S. borders for autonomous surveillance and on military installations for integrated base defense systems and counter UAS.
10 Oct 22. General Micro Systems (GMS) Redefines Military Electronic System Architectures with X9 Spider. Instead of a constrained ATR-style box, the X9 modular, scalable product line enables defense acquisition programs to modernize the battlefield with plug-and-play rugged modules.
General Micro Systems (GMS), the world’s leading technology-independent supplier of computing engines in small form factors (SFF), boards and servers, today announced the launch of its X9 Spider family of distributed, ruggedized computing modules to support the demanding needs of next-generation warfare. Through its innovative inter-locking mechanical design, MOSA Thunderbolt™ interfaces, OpenVPX cross-platform compatibility, and patented LightBolt™ connectors, the X9 Spider family empowers designers to decentralize, distribute and rapidly upgrade computing, networking, storage, artificial intelligence (AI) and video resources wherever and however the program demands.
“Next-generation platforms like aircraft, vehicles, UAS and sensor systems require next-generation capabilities to maximize computing resources in lean, flexible and cost-effective ways,” said Ben Sharfi, chief architect and CEO, GMS. “By breaking the outdated and needlessly expensive, centralized ATR-style board-and-chassis paradigm into Thunderbolt™ technology-connected distributed compute modules, the X9 Spider family gives designers ruggedized, as-needed capabilities to solve any compute problem in any environment—from the smallest enclosure to the largest C5ISR system.” Rugged X9 Spider modules are small and modular, plug-and-play, and emphasize flexibility over ATR chassis’ physical and electrical constraints. An X9 module literally fits in the palm of your hand like a cell phone.
Built for limitless expandability, the X9 Spider family is based on brand-new, patent-pending mechanical features that allow devices to stack and connect together electrically, physically and thermally but at light speed (literally) with minimal signal bottlenecks. As well, X9 Spider connects directly to next-gen sensors without intermediate electronics—simplifying their connection to the electronic system—making the sensors themselves equally scalable and modular. This kind of upgradeability gives the DoD, primes and system developers limitless possibilities with very low upgrade costs.
No one in the rugged industry has anything like X9 Spider because much of the technology was invented and patented by GMS. The revolutionary family includes:
- Interconnectivity via the COTS open standard Thunderbolt™ 4 technology, developed by Intel® and Apple®. As well, 100Gb Ethernet over fiber connects X9 Spider modules to each other and to other high-speed systems
- Two “Host” modules with a range of storage and network capabilities powered either by Intel’s® latest 11th-generation Xeon W (Tiger Lake-H) 8-core CPU, or by NVIDIA’s® Jetson AGX Orin GPGPU with ARMcore engine, plus GPGPU CUDA and Tensor cores
- Six (6) companion X9 modules including: “Workstation” with removable storage and up to 14 sites for add-in I/O like MIL-STD-1553; Network “Switch” with four 100Gb and eight 10Gb Ethernet ports; “Storage” with removable canister and up to eight high-density M.2 or U.2 SSD storage devices; “GPGPU” with NVIDIA™ RTX-5000 GPGPU and custom I/O module such as video frame grabber for autonomous driver sensors; and utility X9 Spider modules for “Power” and “Cooler”
- Improved reliability and robustness through the patent-pending QuadroLock™ active wedge lock technology, enabling X9 Spider modules to interlock to withstand severe noise, vibration and harshness while simultaneously transferring heat between modules for maximum cooling
- Cutting-edge, long-range and cost-efficient interconnects through the patent-pending LightBolt™ connector, supporting Thunderbolt™ 4 fiber or copper and 100W power in one cable
The Achilles heel of a traditional ATR-style box using VME or OpenVPX cards is the lack of flexibility. The box can’t be opened or modified without a requalification; changing the cards requires I/O and backplane rewiring; upgrades can only be done using the box’s same card style (as opposed to choosing the market’s best technology choice); and the box is an expensive single point of failure. As well, with all functions centralized in one box, the whole system’s electrical power and heat is concentrated in one location.
“X9 Spider’s interoperability not only lowers acquisition costs, but it enables modernization and upgrade programs to move past restrictive single-box architectures like VME and OpenVPX and instead uses plug-and-play standards like Thunderbolt™ 4, 100Gigabit Ethernet and USB4 that are deployable anywhere on the platform,” Sharfi said. “This decentralizes computing, power distribution, and heat dissipation while improving fault tolerance through redundancy or merely by physically separating critical functions. These capabilities required new mechanical and electrical innovations to achieve a truly modular, distributed and scalable system that designers will love.”
The GMS X9 architecture includes 22 patents either filed for or granted.
Roll Out Begins Now for X9-Based Computing Engines, Designed and Made in America
The X9 Spider-based computing modules will be available in different variations to meet the unique needs of each application. The first module is the “X9 Spider Wearable”, also announced this week at AUSA2022. GMS will introduce other X9 Spider family products by the end of the year.
GMS has proudly designed and built X9 Spider in America—with the same design ethos as the company’s successful MIL-SPEC small form factor (SFF) computers, conduction-cooled servers, VME and VPX single-board computers, and rugged smart displays.
10 Oct 22. SNC Advances New Vertical Takeoff & Landing Platform
SNC Acquires Volansi Portfolio to Deliver UAV Solutions that Fly Anywhere,. Anytime. Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) today announced it has acquired the portfolio of assets and intellectual property related to the Voly-50 and Voly-T series of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) produced previously by Volansi. The move reaffirms SNC’s commitment to delivering a next-generation, multi-role, long-haul, vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) platform to customers across the DOD and establishing SNC as a leading solution provider in the UAV space.
“SNC is committed to delivering a future unmanned system with the payload, range and endurance that our military needs,” said Tim Owings executive vice president of SNC’s Mission Solutions and Technologies (MST) business area. “Adding the Volansi capabilities to the existing SNC portfolio was a perfect fit. Our complementary technologies will create a world where mission-tailored VTOL drones make it possible to support any industry, to deliver anything, anywhere, anytime.”
With the close of the deal, SNC also acquired Volansi’s production facility in Bend, Oregon and retained key personnel.
The Voly-50 and Voly-T series of infrastructure-independent aerial drones can take off and land vertically, leveraging the sky for unlimited possibilities and endless connections. Combining the Voly technology with SNC’s exceptional open architecture systems, sensor integrations, and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities results in a rapidly deployable unmanned ISR VTOL solution for multi-domain operations.
Utilizing the Voly-50 series design as the foundation, SNC’s VTOL offering has a small operational footprint and can easily operate in difficult terrain and contested spaces for tactical resupply missions. It is built for endurance, with the ability to handle heavy payloads, while a turnkey ISR system gives users the ability to see, track and understand the battlespace more completely.
SNC also leverages the extensive expertise of its subsidiary, Kutta Technologies Inc., in its VTOL offering. Kutta – a respected leader in safety-critical unmanned systems software – contributes to the redundancy and durability required to complete even the toughest DOD missions by ensuring DO-178 compliance and adherence to interoperability standards.
“SNC wanted to keep the dream alive by bringing to fruition the ability to support both ISR and humanitarian aid missions, reaching locations that were once unreachable to deliver survival kits, blankets, food, and water,” said Josh Walsh, vice president of programs for SNC’s MST business area. “The Volansi systems are unique because they offer the military a new generation of flexible UAVs that provide long-haul aircraft with superior flight range, flexible payload capacity and the ability to fly beyond visual line of sight.”
For many years, SNC has invested heavily in internal research and development of emerging technologies, shifting its product development approach to smaller SWAP, open architecture systems and platform-agnostic solutions that allow for faster modification and integration based on customer mission needs. SNC has a proven, 60-year heritage of creating complex technology solutions, including more than 30 years of experience in developing, integrating and engineering unmanned systems to reduce warfighter casualties in combat ISR scenarios. As a leader in unmanned systems, SNC has made significant strides in emerging technologies including artificial intelligence and electronic warfare.
10 Oct 22. At the 2022 AUSA, Honeywell (NASDAQ: HON) reaffirmed its commitment to helping the U.S. Army modernize its armed forces. Over decades of service, Honeywell has contributed to key U.S. Army modernization programs, including upgrades to the battle-proven T55 engine for Chinook helicopters and Honeywell’s new HTS7500 turboshaft engine for the DEFIANT X®, currently a contender to win the U.S. Army’s Future Long-Range Assault Aircraft (FLRAA) competition.
“Today’s gray zone conflicts and advances in military technology by near-peer adversaries require our armed forces to rapidly modernize its capabilities and technologies across all domains of sea, air, land, space and cyber to ensure force readiness against emerging threats,” said Ricky Freeman, president, Defense and Space, Honeywell Aerospace. “The battlefield of the future will not be defined by who has the largest army or even the greatest firepower but rather the ability to employ advanced technologies, speed, range, scale, maneuverability and interoperability across all domains to enable the joint force to achieve overmatch against any near-peer threat.”
“Honeywell has a longstanding relationship with the U.S. Army that spans more than 50 years, and we have a strong understanding of its operational needs,” said Dave Marinick, president, engines and power systems, Honeywell Aerospace. “We are working with the U.S. military and our partners to modernize our armed forces so that their platforms remain relevant for the next generation of warfighters. Additionally, we are confident that the T55 engine, HTS7500 turboshaft, GTCP 36-150 auxiliary power units and other technology will exceed the expectations of the U.S. Army.”
Supporting US Army modernization efforts
Honeywell is focused on supporting each of the U.S. Army’s six modernization priorities. Beyond our work on the T55 and HTS7500 engines, we are also providing the following support:
- Honeywell’s rugged new series of inertial measurement units (IMUs) offers best-in-class accuracy along with the durability to survive high-shock environments of up to 40,000 G-force. These IMUs, which provide motion, position and navigational sensing, can be used for a variety of defense applications by the U.S. Army, including in unmanned aerial vehicles.
- Since the mid-1990s, Honeywell has produced and delivered more than 60,000 embedded global positioning system/inertial navigation systems (EGIs). Designed to provide maximum flexibility, the EGIs are used by the U.S. Army to meet challenging military requirements along with civil interoperability capabilities.
- Honeywell’s TALIN, which has over 20,000 units fielded, offers a proven, battle-tested, best-value technology solution for precise, reliable inertial navigation system (INS)/global positioning system (GPS) navigation, pointing and weapons stabilization.
- Honeywell is investing in alternate position, navigation and timing offerings such as Celestial Navigation, Vision Navigation and Magnetic Navigation that can support near-term anti-access/area denial (A2AD) environments. Honeywell stands ready to support the U.S. Army’s needs for navigation beyond the bounds of GPS.
- Honeywell recently provided an update to the U.S. Army with the next-generation APN 209 Radar Altimeter, introducing state-of-the-art capabilities, reducing installation and integration changes, maximizing reuse and reducing sustainment costs.
The next era of US Army aviation
Early this year, Lockheed Martin Sikorsky-Boeing selected a variety of Honeywell engine and power systems technology for the DEFIANT X® helicopter. That included Honeywell’s HTS7500 turboshaft engine, its GTCP 36-150 auxiliary power units (APUs) series, and its main engine generator and APU generator for the DEFIANT X®. The HTS7500 is the newest, most advanced model in Honeywell’s family of military engines, which includes the iconic T55 engine that has powered the CH-47 Chinook fleet for over 60 years.
Honeywell’s APU for the DEFIANT X® is based on the existing, highly successful GTCP 36-150 APU series. The 36-150 APU series operating today delivers compressed air for main engine starting air-conditioning, anti-ice and heating systems. More than 20 proven variations modified for military and commercial aircraft are flying today.
An unmatched legacy of success
In late 2021, Honeywell reached a significant modernization milestone by completing the first engine to test (FETT) of the next-generation T55 engine as part of its Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the U.S. Army for the next-generation T55 engine for Chinook helicopters. CRADA supports U.S. Army modernization efforts and will allow it to evaluate the capabilities of the newest rendition of Honeywell’s battle-proven T55.
With 6,000 horsepower, Honeywell’s upgraded engine is projected to be 23% more powerful and consume 8% less fuel than the current T55, even in demanding operating conditions. New modifications also make the next-generation T55 easier to maintain with lower operating costs, delivering increased readiness for the warfighter.
In 2020, Honeywell won a competitive repair and overhaul contract for T55 engines already in service. In addition, Honeywell completed a new world-class engine repair and overhaul facility in Phoenix, a move that allowed the repair and overhaul work on the T55-GA-714A engine to be fulfilled in the same location as new engine production.
10 Oct 22. Rheinmetall at AUSA 2022 – American Rheinmetall Brings Next-Generation Technologies that meet the U.S. Army’s Highest Priority Modernization Challenges, Now.
The AUSA Annual Meeting & Exposition takes place in Washington, DC from 10-12 October. This year’s motto is “Building the Army of 2030”. The American Rheinmetall family of companies along with key partners from Rheinmetall’s global enterprise will be on-site (booth #1439) showcasing some of its most recent activities, achievements and innovative solutions aimed at providing the U.S. Army with the critical, next-generation technologies it needs and deserves.
The OMFV Concept Demonstrator
American Rheinmetall Vehicles and the exceptional U.S. defense companies of Team Lynx – Textron Systems, Raytheon Technologies, L3Harris Technologies, Allison Transmission, and Anduril Industries, are designing a transformational next-gen infantry fighting vehicle – The Lynx OMFV – for the Army’s Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle (OMFV) Program. Featuring a US-designed new, lethal, unmanned 50mm turret with 3rd GEN FLIR, a highly maneuverable and powerful right-sized chassis, advanced on-board protection systems including active protection, and an open systems architecture, ensuring overmatch today and overmatch tomorrow.
On the Rheinmetall booth, visitors can see American Rheinmetall Vehicles’ OMFV Concept Demonstrator, a life-size display that represents the physical appearance of the Lynx OMFV’s design, complimented with augmented reality highlighting technologies for the OMFV program. Visitors can learn more about the Lynx OMFV’s transformational capabilities at Rheinmetall booth #1439. Additional information on next-gen technologies that are part of the Lynx OMFV delivered by Team Lynx is available on their individual exhibition booths: Textron (#3024), Raytheon (#2304), L3Harris (#6627), Allison (#8409), and Anduril (#4443).
The HX3-CTT – The Next-Gen Tactical Truck that Delivers
The HX3-CTT, offered to the Army for its Common Tactical Truck (CTT) program by American Rheinmetall Vehicles and GM Defense features proven commercial technology alongside impressive tactical capabilities. Delivering exceptional commonality across a family of tactical trucks, the HX3-CTT brings the benefits of common parts and high commerciality that enable rapid, efficient incorporation of advanced technology insertions in the future, including those developed by the commercial marketplace with clear benefit to the military vehicle segment. The next-generation tactical truck offers modern capabilities, such as advances in safety (including extensive ADAS features), demand reduction with improved fuel efficiency and reduced carbon emissions, and leverages commercial content to maximize the benefits of a streamlined, validated global supply chain.
American Rheinmetall Vehicles and GM Defense formed a strategic collaboration to bring together two powerhouse companies that can leverage commercial technologies, robust engineering, and world-class manufacturing to answer the Army’s call for the next-generation CTT program. The HX3-CTT is a derivative of Rheinmetall MAN Military Vehicles’ globally successful and fielded HX family of military off-the-shelf tactical trucks already in service with 8 allied countries. See the HX3-CTT at the GM Defense booth #7901!
Airburst Lethality – Fight. Survive. Win.
On display at AUSA, visitors will see a range of world-class, medium caliber airburst munitions, a field of technology in which Rheinmetall specializes. The airburst munitions produce lethal effects against personnel in open and defilade positions, defeat unarmored/lightly armored vehicles and provide layered counter-UAS defense. The improved MK93 heavy weapon mount – designed and produced by American Rheinmetall Systems – will also be on display. The improved mount reduces recoil and improves accuracy of medium caliber weapon systems, to enable the integration of Rheinmetall’s airburst munition and lethality capabilities that require high precision. Rheinmetall is also leveraging its extensive systems expertise to provide high performance programmers that increase first round hit probability for airburst systems. American Rheinmetall Munitions coordinates Rheinmetall’s work to ensure these systems deliver optimal interoperability and game-changing combat performance for the Army.
The 155mm L52 Howitzer Cannon Barrel and Advanced Artillery Technologies
Rheinmetall‘s expertise as an Artillery Systems House will be on full display, starting with the combat proven, in-service 155mm L52 howitzer cannon barrel – JBMOU compliant and NATO compatible. Also featured is Rheinmetall’s most advanced artillery technologies including Extended Range Charge (ERC) propellant, providing significant range increase across operational temparature profiles, the precision Velocity-enhanced Long-Range Artillery Projectile (V-LAP) 155mm ammunition which have recently set world-records, and SMArt®155, the intelligent and autonomous sensor-fused, fire-and-forget artillery projectile. ERC is protoyping a L58 ERCA charge for the Army and V-LAP recently demonstrated extremely high accuracy with course-correcting fuzes in a live fire in Yuma. The technology combination of 155mm L52 with ERC and either V-LAP or SMArt®155 provide game-changing lethality and range dominance desired for the Army’s tactical fires.
Rheinmetall’s Mission Master CXT Autonomous Unmanned Ground Vehicle
Rheinmetall is proud to introduce the Mission Master CXT, the latest member of its successful Mission Master family of Autonomous Unmanned Ground Vehicles (A-UGV), at this year’s AUSA exhibition. The Mission Master CXT is a new autonomous ground vehicle capable of tackling extreme terrain with a world-class weapon, the M134D, providing rapid suppression of any target and putting friendly military forces in positions of advantage. Stay tuned for more info!
Electronic Mission Systems Including Unmatched EO/IR 360° Vehicle Situational Awareness Technology
Rheinmetall’s U.S. electronics division, American Rheinmetall Systems, will display its broadened product portfolio at this year’s AUSA exhibition. In addition to soldier lethality systems such as laser aiming, pointing and illuminating devices and fire control systems, the company offers world-class vehicle electronic mission systems to the U.S. market. On display at AUSA will be an interactive commander’s and gunner’s display of a TRL 9, fully integrated, modular and scalable combat vehicle system for EO/IR 360° Situational Awareness and Drivers Vision Enhancement.
StrikeShield Active Protection System: Modular Protection with Lower Risk of Detection
Rheinmetall will demonstrate its expertise in vehicle survivability with an exhibit of StrikeShield, a next-generation Hardkill Active Protection System that integrates APS components within a modular armor package. StrikeShield’s hybrid design provides optimal performance while minimizing system weight and power consumption. In addition, StrikeShield offers superior protection when engaged by multiple or simultaneous threats, even from very close range. The system emits a very low electronic signature that significantly reduces the risk of detection by adversaries, and its defeat of threats in close proximity to the platform make StrikeShield much safer for dismounts.
Visitors to Rheinmetall’s booth also learned about the company’s Rapid Obscuring System (ROSY), a 40mm non-lethal grenade launcher that is currently fielded on both vehicle and naval platforms. ROSY produces an instantaneous smokescreen for effective obscuration across the visual and IR spectrum, and the system’s lightweight modular design is suitable for virtually all ground vehicles.
Rheinmetall welcomes visitors to AUSA booth #1439 to experience the Group’s offerings fitted for the Army’s future fighting force.
10 Oct 22. General Micro Systems (GMS) today introduced a new product family of 3U and 6U OpenVPX computer boards, peripherals and ATR-style chassis for use in U.S. Army ground, air, communications and weapons systems. The “X9 Venom” family of 21 products will be available by early 2023, starting first with the 3U and 6U single-board computers (SBCs) based upon Intel® and NVIDIA® processors and GPGPUs. All products follow ANSI/VITA 65 standards, meet the Department of Defense (DoD) requirement for modular open standards approach (MOSA) electronic systems, and are IEEE 1101.2 conduction cooled. X9 Venom products are also SOSA™ (Sensor Open Standard Architecture) aligned and ready to meet C4ISR/Electronic Warfare Modular Open Suite of Standards (CMOSS), two standards that increasingly are requirements in U.S. Army programs and platform upgrades.
X9 Venom product family brings over 20 new 3U and
6U modules and chassis with SOSA™ and MOSA approach
based upon Thunderbolt™ 4 and 100Gb Ethernet
Interoperability. The TVPX3XD Host here is a 3U Xeon D
(Ice Lake) single board computer, one slot in 3U form.
The OpenVPX standard is a common upgrade from widely deployed legacy VME-style boards and chassis. Unlike VME, however, OpenVPX modules have limited space for electronics and input/output signals, offering little differentiation between vendors or suppliers of these modules. For system designers, OpenVPX systems have fewer functions per slot and need more boards in the chassis, require complex wiring between the slots as functions “spill over,” and generally use more power, generate more heat and cost more.
GMS’ X9 Venom product line is different, relying on GMS’ modular and super-dense X9 architecture and patented I/O, through-board and external connectors, signal conditioning, power management and cooling to drastically increase the functionality of each X9 Venom single board computer—better called a single-board system.
“Each of Venom’s 3U and 6U single-board systems have more functionality, more memory, higher-performance processors, and much greater amounts of data I/O bandwidth—up to 455 Gbps—than any competing OpenVPX vendor,” said Ben Sharfi, CEO and chief architect, GMS. “With all of these unique capabilities, if a customer chooses OpenVPX or SOSA™-aligned OpenVPX over more efficient implementations like our small form factor (SFF) X9 Spider modules, it only makes sense to choose one of our X9 Venom OpenVPX single-board systems.”
According to Sharfi, GMS accomplishes what was once deemed impossible by “folding” a larger computer board with many functions into multiple 3U-sized boards that fit into either one or two 3U slots. In addition, patented GMS connector technology and know-how routes high-speed PCI Express 4 signals (16Gbps) between the stacked boards without signal degradation. Traditional PCI Express and Ethernet data is sent to the backplane, but high-speed I/O—including 100Gbit fiber optic data and Thunderbolt™ 4 signals—is sent to the front panel.
GMS 3U and 6U ATR-PLUS chassis are designed to handle both backplane and front panel copper and fiber data. The 6U-sized X9 Venom boards are all single slot but essentially take the 3-board X9 architecture and place it onto a single 6U board. All boards or chassis use GMS patented “clamshell” heat sinks, wedgelocks, RuggedCool™ or Diamond RuggedCool™ hot spot cooling and stiffeners, and have available LightBolt™ front panel connectors for copper, fiber, or fiber with up to 100W Power Delivery.
A New MOSA Perspective: Interoperability via Thunderbolt 4
Unique to GMS’ X9 architecture, which includes the X9 Spider SFF modules and X9 Venom OpenVPX boards and chassis, is Thunderbolt 4 technology. This Intel®/Apple® 40Gbps interface provides USB 4/3/2, DisplayPort, PCIe, 10Gbits/s Ethernet, and up to 100W Power Delivery (when equipped). With Venom single-board systems, Thunderbolt 4 ports and 100Gb Ethernet allow data movement between cards and outside of the ATR box without loading up the limited bandwidth OpenVPX backplane. In addition, externally connected Thunderbolt 4 systems provide simple modularity, scalability and a very easy upgrade path without having to modify an OpenVPX chassis.
“Thunderbolt 4 ports and 100Gbs Ethernet give GMS’ Venom boards the ability to scale well beyond the ATR chassis,” Sharfi said. “We’ve solved the board real estate problem by ‘folding’ the boards to maximize functionality per slot. With Thunderbolt 4 ports and 100Gbps Ethernet added, we’ve also solved the limitations of the VPX backplane.”
Thunderbolt 4 technology and 100Gbps Ethernet provide the MOSA interoperability, scalability and vendor independence that SOSA is trying to accomplish, without having to define the interface at the card edge all the way down to the individual pins. Any product with Thunderbolt 4 technology or Ethernet ports will interoperate and can be replaced by any other product.
X9 Venom Product Offering
Available in single-slot or dual-slot versions, in 3U or 6U sizes, and in air- or conduction-cooled versions, X9 Venom SBCs are available with Intel®’s 8 core Xeon W (Tiger Lake H), Intel’s 20 core Xeon D-2700 (formerly Ice Lake D HCC), or NVIDIA®’s Jetson AGX Orin GPGPU machine image vision/AI processor. Each SBC comes fully featured, and can also be available with network-oriented functions (“NET” version), network-attached storage functions (“NAS” version), or artificial intelligence functions (“AI” version). Options are many, including up to 48TB of on-board storage, 4-6 100Gb Ethernet ports, supplemental NVIDIA RTX5000 GPGPU co-processor, and up to six Thunderbolt 4 40Gbps ports for out-of-band data movement without relying on the backplane.
3U Processor Modules
CPUs are either Intel® Xeon W Core i7 or Intel® Xeon D Ice Lake as single-board system, or as network-centric (“NET”) with 2-6 RDMA 100GbE and 2-4 Thunderbolt 4 ports, or as network-attached storage (“NAS”) with up to 48TB VROC RAID storage, and 2-4 Thunderbolt 4 ports plus 2-4 100GbE ports with Intel iWRAP and RoCEv2 on Ice Lake D systems. All processor modules have multiple low-speed I/O plus legacy I/O options, along with optional NVIDIA GPGPU.
6U Processor Modules
CPUs are either Intel® Xeon W Core i7 or Intel® Xeon D Ice Lake, or as network-centric (“NET”) with 4-6 RDMA 100GbE and 2-4 Thunderbolt 4 ports, or as network-attached storage (“NAS”) with up to 48TB VROC RAID storage, and 2-4 Thunderbolt 4 ports plus 2-4 100GbE ports with Intel iWRAP and RoCEv2 on Xeon D systems. All processor modules have multiple low-speed I/O plus legacy I/O options, along with optional NVIDIA GPGPU.
Additional OpenVPX Venom modules include NVIDIA® Jetson AGX Orin GPGPU for artificial intelligence (“AI”) with image processing frame grabber inputs; 20-port Ethernet switch (“Switch”); and 1000W redundant, N+1 SOSA-aligned smart VPX power supply (“Power”).
OpenVPX ATR-style Chassis
GMS “ATR-PLUS” and “ATR-MAX” chassis come in aluminum alloy or in carbon fiber to save up to 30% in weight. Per-slot heat pipe cooling improves reliability and extends operating range. All chassis front panels are infinitely configurable and include high- and low-speed copper connectors plus fiber connectors for internal backplane and card front panel wiring. 3U chassis have six or eight slots, a removable 4-SSD canister for data storage, and two slots for dual 1000W smart power supplies. 6U chassis include two canisters for removable storage and eight slots, with two reserved for power supplies. All Thunderbolt® technology-equipped chassis offer 100W Power Delivery over fiber.
Designed in America
GMS has proudly designed X9 Venom SOSA-aligned 3U and 6U OpenVPX modules in America—with the same design ethos as the company’s successful MIL-SPEC conduction-cooled servers, VME and VPX single-board computers, and deployed conduction-cooled small form factor (SFF) chassis and systems.
10 Oct 22. HUMVEE SABER from the danger zone thanks to its superior mobility. At AUSA 2022, AM General and Hornet unveil a new HUMVEE Saber concept vehicle in a full drone warfare configuration: the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION, specifically designed for drone warfare.
Recent conflicts have demonstrated the increasing importance of drones and loitering munition, whether as offensive vectors or as reconnaissance systems. To offer a highly capable, highly mobile platform to carry these drones safely and efficiently on the battlefield, AM General, in collaboration with Hornet and Aerovironment, has developed the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION, presented for the first time at AUSA 2022. This new HUMVEE SABER version features AeroVironment’s Switchblade® loitering missiles, and a Hornet Air Guard Remote Controlled Weapon System with Counter-UAS solution by Hornet.
The loitering munitions on the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition include the Switchblade 300 and Switchblade 600 that provide rapidly deployable, loitering precision strike missiles for use against non-line-of-sight targets. Switchblade 300 is small and has a quiet motor, making it difficult to detect, recognize, and track even at very close range. Switchblade 600 missiles are also integrated on the truck. The Switchblade 600 represents the next generation of extended-range loitering missiles and features high precision optics and over 40 minutes of endurance. Switchblade 600 provides unprecedented RSTA (Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition) and precision strike capabilities against larger, hardened targets via an anti-armor warhead.
The HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION was designed to operate close to front line battlefields and launch its drones to engage enemy high-value targets such as HQ, tanks and artillery. Modern battlespaces can also be very easily filled by a large variety of small, short-range drones, both armed and non-armed, some of which originate from the civilian market. Combat areas will thus be more and more subjected to threats of detection, acquisition and/or engagement by smaller drones at very short distances.
To answer that emerging problem, the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION is equipped with a Hornet RCWS by Hornet in an Air Guard configuration, which ensures short-range detection and neutralization of hostile drones around the vehicle.
The Hornet Air Guard is a secondary anti-drone capability, first presented in 2022, which complements the Hornet RCWS and its native functions: surveillance, fire, and self-protection thanks to an independent smoke grenade launcher ring. The Hornet Air Guard adds a Gonio RF (Hydra from Cerbair) and a radar which are fitted on the Hornet’s independent smoke grenade launcher ring. Both systems constantly scan the area while the RCWS can still be used normally for observation or combat missions.
Upon detection of a hostile drone, the operator is automatically warned of the threat and can validate an RCWS rally with identification via optronics. The drone can then be neutralized with the automatic 40mm grenade launcher and an air-burst grenade. Such a feature can also engage and destroy an armed or suicide drone attacking the HUMVEE SABER before it can get too close.
Most importantly, the detection of enemy drone presence in the vicinity warns the crew of a possible detection and allows for a swift extraction of the HUMVEE SABER from the danger zone thanks to its superior mobility. Such an information is vital in current-day operations, with highly efficient counter-battery procedures, where drones have critically reduced decision time as well as inter-arms communication and coordination.
In addition to its anti-drone function, the Hornet Air Guard’s radar can also contribute to the surveillance and intelligence gathering in the zone of operations.
The detection of hostile drones is done independently and automatically. Thus, there is no need for the operator to be an anti-drone trained specialist. The system retains the independent GALIX smoke grenade launcher of the Hornet RCWS, effectively protecting the vehicle during combat operations. The Battlenet system by Arquus coordinates all these functions together.
With its Switchblade loitering missiles and the Hornet Air Guard from Hornet, the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION brings highly efficient surveillance and aggression capabilities on the battlefield, on and beyond the front lines, while ensuring its own self-protection against close-range air threats in full autonomy. With the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION, AM General and Hornet present a versatile, coherent solution, adapted to modern warfare, bringing unprecedented tactical and strategic effect with a very light footprint and reduced team.
The integration of the Hornet Air Guard on AM General’s HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION shows once again the industry’s full confidence in Hornet, now a very well-established name in a very fast-moving industry, and the cutting-edge innovation and performance it brings together.
05 Oct 22. Black Sage exhibited new modular counter drone capability at US Army show. Counter Unmanned Aerial Systems (C-UAS) company Black Sage is to unveil a new modular capability at the Association of the US Army (AUSA) Expo in Washington 10-12 October 2022.
The company’s range of drone detection solutions includes a trailer-mounted version of its Sawtooth hardware platform, a customisable C-UAS solution. SawtoothTM is trailer-mounted for towing by a standard pick-up truck or equivalent vehicle to allow for swift transfer from one location to another. For more information visit: www.blacksagetech.com (Source: www.unmannedairspace.info)
10 Oct 22. Curtiss-Wright Showcases New Rugged MOSA-based Solutions for Ground Vehicles and Live System Solution Demonstrations at AUSA 2022.
Curtiss-Wright will display its latest Modular Open System Approach based system solutions designed to deliver transformational capabilities for the Army of 2030
Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions division, a leading supplier of Modular Open Systems Approach (MOSA) based solutions, will showcase its latest rugged system solutions designed to deliver transformational capabilities for the Army of 2030 at this year’s AUSA Annual Meeting Exposition. One of the most important drivers fueling new and innovative capabilities for future mission success and sustained overmatch is the DoD’s mandate for open standards based MOSA solutions. During the AUSA 2022 Annual Meeting and Exposition (Booth 1309), October 10-12, 2022, Curtiss-Wright will showcase its latest products designed in compliance with the U.S. Army CCDC C5ISR Center’s CMOSS standard and aligned with the Sensor Open Systems Architecture™ (SOSA) Technical Standard 1.0.
Curtiss-Wright will present innovative, integrated technologies for next-generation systems and platforms, including modular open system architecture approaches for next-generation combat vehicle agility and sustained overmatch capability. On display will be a wide range of solutions for embedded computing, communications/networking, data storage/recording, video management/displays, motion control, enclosures/consoles and fully integrated systems. These solutions ease and speed the deployment of such capabilities as secure transport-agnostic and data-centric network operations at the tactical edge.
The Curtiss-Wright HMMWV Demonstration Vehicle
Curtiss-Wright’s U.S. Army M998 HMMWV demonstrator vehicle will host live demonstrations of its latest MOSA-based CMOSS and SOSA aligned processing and tactical networking communications capabilities. This compelling demonstration platform provides real-world examples of Curtiss-Wright’s ability to enable rapid innovation and integration of military ground vehicles.
The integrated demo also highlights Curtiss-Wright’s leadership position in enabling the seamless sharing of information between platforms, connecting the battlefield with Secure Wireless Network Solutions. All of the live demonstrations featured on the HMMWV Demonstration Vehicle are connected over the vehicle’s network backbone using the PacStar® IQ-Core® Software secure communications management solution.
1) A “Glide Path” Approach for Integrating SOSA Aligned Solutions on Ground Vehicles
The latest addition to Curtiss-Wright’s PacStar family of advanced communications solutions for the DoD is the new 5-Slot PacStar VPX Smart Chassis, which provides the highest level of SOSA alignment available today. The chassis is designed to fit into a SAVE enclosure alongside a PacStar 400-Series 4-Slot Smart Chassis comms system, facilitating the future transition to a full CMOSS/SOSA aligned hardware solution.
The PacStar Hybrid MOSA Solution, which houses both the new PacStar VPX Smart Chassis and PacStar 400-Series 4-Slot Smart Chassis in a single SAVE enclosure, will host the Secure Wireless Mesh Remote Endpoint (SWMRE) Demo Kit and PacStar IQ-Core Software secure wireless network.
2) CMOSS/SOSA Ruggedized Universal Software-Defined Radio (USRP)
The SOSA aligned VPX3-E320 USRP Ruggedized Universal Software-Defined Radio module, the first fully rugged OpenVPX variant of technology partner NI’s popular Ettus Research USRP E320 SDR solution, will be shown running 3dB Labs SCEPTRE software to show live RF spectrum and demodulation.
3) Low SWaP Command & Control Platform
With technology partner REDCOM, Curtiss-Wright will demonstrate a rugged deployable MOSA solution for voice, video, chat and radio interop featuring REDCOM Sigma SRI running on the CMOSS compliant VPX-1260 single board computer in a virtual environment. This compact single platform solution will feature the REDCOM Sigma C2 Console unified interface for controlling all IP and RF comms on the C2 network.
4) Tactical Data Links for Battlefield Communications
Curtiss-Wright’s TCG HUNTR Tactical Data Link (TDL) Hub and Network Translator will be shown supporting Link 16 and other TDLs for situational awareness. Simulation software providing visibility into real world links with air, sea and ground platforms on a local map will be shown running on the Parvus DuraCOR 8043 ultra-small form factor mission computer.
5) A Deployable Network Backbone
The Parvus DuraNET 3300 Cisco Switch will host PacStar IQ-Core Software to map and manage all networked nodes in the HMMWV Demonstrator Vehicle, connecting equipment and virtual machines, and providing access to information from a single workstation. Three Parvus DuraCOR small form factor mission computers on the HMMWV will display data on Curtiss-Wright rugged AVDU (Audio Visual Display Unit) and GVDU (Ground Vehicle Display Unit) touchscreen displays.
6) CMOSS/MOSA Solutions
Also featured on the HMMWV are the 3-slot 3U OpenVPX™ CMOSS/SOSA Starter Kit system and 5-slot and 8-slot CMOSS/SOSA Chassis. The CMOSS/SOSA Starter Kit hosts a VPX3-687 VICTORY Network Ethernet switch module, VPX3-A-PNT module with CSAC, IMU and GBGRAM Type-II SAASM/M-Code receiver, and VPX3-1260 Intel 8th Gen Xeon Processor single board computer (SBC). The 5-slot and 8-slot CMOSS/SOSA Chassis highlight Curtiss-Wright’s expansive CMOSS/MOSA product portfolio relative to ground vehicles, and its ability to support the highest functional density using natural convection cooling. Curtiss-Wright’s new CMOSS chassis are designed to meet the U.S. Army PEO Ground Combat Systems (GCS) Standardized A-Kit / Vehicle Envelope (SAVE), a new standard that defines internal mounting and physical interfaces for connecting CMOSS systems and radios to platforms. These fan-free chassis are ideal for use in Ground Combat Vehicle, and Tactical Wheeled Vehicle Platforms, as well as high-performance ground or rotary wing processing applications.
7) Tactical Battlefield Communications
In the vehicle PacStar IQ-Core Software will be demonstrated running in dashboard mode. Also, a SAVE-compliant enclosure housing a 4-slot PacStar Smart Chassis with Secure Wireless Command Post Extension (SWCP-X) for vehicle-to-vehicle communications will be demonstrated. The hybrid CMOSS OpenVPX™ chassis shows Curtiss-Wright CMOSS/SOSA modules integrated with existing PacStar 400-Series modules for the first time.
A Leader in Open Standards
Curtiss-Wright is an active contributor to the definition and advancement of the open standards included in CMOSS and those being defined in The Open Group Sensor Open Systems Architecture™ (SOSA). Curtiss-Wright has been a leading participant in the development of the CMOSS and SOSA standards since the inception of both initiatives and is a key participant in several SOSA™ Consortium working groups (including holding a chair position in the SOSA Consortium). In addition, the company has been a leading contributor to the VITA Standards Organization (VSO) that oversees the definition of the OpenVPX, PMC, XMC, and FMC form factor standards that provide the foundation of both CMOSS and SOSA technical standards. This makes Curtiss-Wright ideally positioned to work with customers to help guide the development and success of their CMOSS and SOSA-aligned applications.
10 Oct 22. Textron unveils its ground robot — that can swim. Textron Systems is bringing its latest unmanned ground vehicle with amphibious capabilities to the Association of the U.S. Army’s annual conference.
The company is displaying the aquatically inclined Ripsaw M3 ground robot technology demonstrator at its booth during the show, which runs Oct. 10-12. Textron will demonstrate the robot’s flexibility to accommodate a variety of payloads by swapping them in and out each day of the show, according to David Phillips, the company’s senior vice president of land and sea systems.
Textron debuted its Ripsaw M5 at AUSA in 2019, and the Army selected the system for the Robotic Combat Vehicle-Medium prototyping evaluation program shortly thereafter. The company has built for the Army five prototypes, including an all-electric version released in 2020.
The service has put these vehicles into soldiers’ hands over the last several years for operational experiments, most recently a five-week event at Fort Hood, Texas.
At 8 tons, including payloads, the M3 robot is smaller than the M5 version, Phillips told Defense News, but is still a bit larger than what the Army has evaluated in an Robotic Combat Vehicle-Light category. The size of the robot is meant to show how Textron can scale the system, Phillips said. The Army has not settled on the exact size required for any of its ground robots, but Textron’s system can fit in a CH-47 cargo helicopter, Phillips said.
The M3 “incorporates a lot of maturity and a lot of the learnings from the M5 product and the several thousand hours of operational experience that we have garnered through it,” Phillips said. “We’re not trying to necessarily presuppose what the Army is going to come up with. We’ve put this technology demonstrator together to position ourselves to de-risk, eventually delivering these bid samples that they’re eventually going to want for an RCV-Light.”
Most noticeable on the new ground robot is its visible water jets, which allow it to swim, Phillips said. The technology is derived from the Cottonmouth Advanced Reconnaissance Vehicle Textron is delivering to the Marine Corps, Phillips added.
While the Army doesn’t have a swimming requirement, “we just wanted to get out ahead of that,” given the service navigates wet gap crossings, he said. The effort is more challenging because the robot is tracked rather than wheeled, Phillips noted, so it’s important to demonstrate the capability and learn from it.
At AUSA, M3 is expected to first feature Electro Optics Systems’ R400S remote weapon station with a 30mm armament on the front, as well as CACI International’s expeditionary mobile air defense integrated system, which is a kinetic counter-drone weapon, and a non-kinetic electronic attack module at the rear.
On the second day, the company plans to swap in Kongsberg’s Common Remotely Operated Weapons Station with Javelin missiles, or CROWS-J, on the front; the back is expected to feature Anduril’s Area-I Altius air-launched effects system.
The third day is expected to feature a Kongsberg CROWS in the front, with an Arnold Defense modular lightweight Hydra system — a high-capacity, 2.75-inch multiple rocket launcher — on the back.
The M3 is designed with enhanced mobility in mind, Phillips said, with a 14-inch ground clearance. “It needs to keep up with the manned systems, it needs to stay ahead of the manned systems,” Phillips said.
Textron also ramped up the robot’s ruggedness after learning from M5 evaluations. (Source: Defense News)
10 Oct 22. Hanwha showcased next-generation artillery, unmanned capabilities at AUSA 2022 – Hanwha Defense USA will display the world’s most popular K9 Self-Propelled Howitzer, alongside with the K10 Ammunition Resupply Vehicle, proving the artillery package’s operational efficiency – The K9 and K10 artillery solution have successfully proved the compatibility with various US munitions during a live-fire demonstration at Yuma Proving Ground – The state-of-the-art ‘Arion-SMET’ multipurpose UGV will be presented for the first time in the United States October 10, 2022 – The world’s most proven artillery system already in service with nine countries, the K9 Thunder Self-Propelled Howitzer (SPH) will be in the spotlight at this year’s land power exposition hosted by the Association of the US Army (AUSA). The 155mm/52-calibre gun will be on show alongside with the K10 Ammunition Resupply Vehicle (ARV) at AUSA 2022, to be run on October 10-12 at Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington D.C. The display of K9 family vehicles follows their successful demonstration of compatibility with various US munitions at Yuma Proving Ground, Arizona, in September. The latest live demonstration was conducted under the Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) framework signed between Hanwha and US Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Armaments Center (DEVCOM AC) in 2021, with the aim of assessing the feasibility, performance and capabilities of carrying and firing the US munitions by Hanwha’s artillery platforms.
“The demonstration successfully met all of its CRADA objectives, having shown the full interoperability of K9 and K10 vehicles with US munitions and charges, in addition to the extended range, shoot and scoot and high rate of fire of the K9 system,” said John Kelly, President and CEO of Hanwha Defense USA. “The collaboration with DEVCOM AC and US Army Test and Evaluation Command at Yuma has been excellent.” The K9 Thunder is a best proven tracked platform, allowing genuine, sustained 360-degree firing solutions, delivering consistent, accurate, rapid effects at +40km range with high rates and volumes of fire. The K10 is a fully automated ammunition resupply vehicle designed to be used in conjunction with the K9. Based on the same chassis of the K9 SPH, the ARV carries a total of 104 rounds and possesses the same mobility as the K9. At Yuma, Hanwha’s gun crew demonstrated the capabilities of K9A1 SPH and K10 ARV by loading and firing different types of US ammunition, such as 155mm M795 projectiles, XM1113 Rocket Assisted Projectiles (RAP), and Modular Artillery Charge System (MACS) charges. Through the live capability test, the K9A1 successfully proved its “Shoot and Scoot” capability, firing multiple rounds and moving out of the position immediately to negate the danger of counter-battery fire. In addition, the artillery showed high levels of burst fire and rate of fire with the firing of three rounds in 16 seconds, and six rounds in 45 seconds, respectively. During the show, Hanwha will also present the growth potential of K9 artillery system, which is being upgraded to the K9A2 version equipped with a fully automatic ammunition handling system. With the automated turret, the K9A2 can attain a fire rate of at least nine rounds per minute, only with three crewmembers. Further down the line, more futuristic K9 version, codenamed K9A3, will be developed to feature an extended firing range and remote controlled/autonomous driving modes. Arion-SMET On the Hanwha booth, visitor can see the company’s futuristic unmanned ground vehicle (UGV) _ Arion-SMET _ and related technologies. The Arion-SMET is a state-of-the-art UGV to carry out multiple missions in support of infantry troops in the battlefield.
The 6×6 UGV features a range of innovative capabilities including autonomous off-road driving; remote-controlled manoeuvres; and tether devices for following soldiers. The Arion-SMET can carry out missions such as reconnaissance, communication relay, logistics/casualty transport, and close combat. In particular, the next-generation vehicle has been designed to be optimized for supporting manned and unmanned teaming (MUM-T) operations. “Along with those great, legacy weapon systems such as K9, Hanwha Defense has striven for delivering robotics and autonomous systems with superb and tailor-made capabilities since 2006,” said Seo Youngwoo, Executive Vice President of Hanwha Defense’s Department of Defense Robotics and Autonomous Systems Development. “Arion-SMET is the latest edition to this effort that would stand strong at the era of ushering in Manned-Unmanned Teaming (MUM-T), and recently gets lots of attentions from the domestic and international market as its functionalities are easily expandable and its capabilities are very competitive.” The vehicle is armed with a Deep Neural Network (DNN)-based remote-controlled weapons station (RCWS), which can detect the sound of gunfire and fire back in the direction of the origin of the sound. It can travel at road and cross-country speeds of up to 43kph and 34 kph, respectively, offering a payload capacity of 500kg. TAipers Hanwha will also display the TAipers tactical guided rocket, jointly developed by the Agency for Defense Development. Also known as Cheongeom, the TAipers is an enhanced air-to-ground guided missile designed to be launched from a light attack helicopter. The missile is equipped with an advanced visual and infrared dual mode seeker for day-and-night operations, and its fiber optic data link and Man-InThe-Loop (MITL) operation enable the operator to conduct both Line-of-Sight (LOS) and NoneLine-of-Sight (NLOS) target striking missions. Hanwha Defense USA welcomes visitors to AUSA booth #1405 to catch up with Hanwha’s latest technologies and innovative solutions meeting the U.S. Army’s future fighting force.
10 Oct 22. Hornet Air Guard at AUSA: Providing short-range drone detection and neutralization capabilities to AM General’s new HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition At AUSA 2022, AM General and Hornet have unveiled a new HUMVEE Saber concept vehicle in a full drone warfare configuration: the HUMVEE SABER BLADE EDITION, specifically designed for drone warfare. Recent conflicts have demonstrated the increasing importance of drones and loitering munition, whether as offensive vectors or as reconnaissance systems. To offer a highly capable, highly mobile platform to carry these drones safely and efficiently on the battlefield, AM General, in collaboration with Hornet and Aerovironment, has developed the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition, presented for the first time at AUSA 2022. This new HUMVEE Saber version features AeroVironment’s Switchblade® loitering missiles, and a Hornet Air Guard Remote Controlled Weapon System with Counter-UAS solution by Hornet. The loitering munitions on the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition include the Switchblade 300 and Switchblade 600 that provide rapidly deployable, loitering precision strike missiles for use against non-line-of-sight targets. Switchblade 300 is small and has a quiet motor, making it difficult to detect, recognize, and track even at very close range. Switchblade 600 missiles are also integrated on the truck. The Switchblade 600 represents the next generation of extended-range loitering missiles and features high precision optics and over 40 minutes of endurance. Switchblade 600 provides unprecedented RSTA (Reconnaissance, Surveillance, and Target Acquisition) and precision strike capabilities against larger, hardened targets via an anti-armor warhead. The HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition was designed to operate close to front line battlefields and launch its drones to engage enemy high-value targets such as HQ, tanks and artillery. Modern battlespaces can also be very easily filled by a large variety of small, short-range drones, both armed and non-armed, some of which originate from the civilian market. Combat areas will thus be more and more subjected to threats of detection, acquisition and/or engagement by smaller drones at very short distances. To answer that emerging problem, the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition is equipped with a Hornet RCWS by Hornet in an Air Guard configuration, which ensures short-range detection and neutralization of hostile drones around the vehicle. The Hornet Air Guard is a secondary anti-drone capability, first presented in 2022, which complements the Hornet RCWS and its native functions: surveillance, fire, and self-protection thanks to an independent smoke grenade launcher ring. The Hornet Air Guard adds a Gonio RF (Hydra from Cerbair) and a radar which are fitted on the Hornet’s independent smoke grenade launcher ring. Both systems constantly scan the area while the RCWS can still be used normally for observation or combat missions. Upon detection of a hostile drone, the operator is automatically warned of the threat and can validate an RCWS rally with identification via optronics. The drone can then be neutralized with the automatic 40mm grenade launcher and an air-burst grenade. Such a feature can also engage and destroy an armed or suicide drone attacking the HUMVEE Saber before it can get too close. Most importantly, the detection of enemy drone presence in the vicinity warns the crew of a possible detection and allows for a swift extraction of the HUMVEE Saber from the danger zone thanks to its superior mobility. Such an information is vital in current-day operations, with highly efficient counter-battery procedures, where drones have critically reduced decision time as well as inter-arms communication and coordination. In addition to its anti-drone function, the Hornet Air Guard’s radar can also contribute to the surveillance and intelligence gathering in the zone of operations. The detection of hostile drones is done independently and automatically. Thus, there is no need for the operator to be an anti-drone trained specialist. The system retains the independent GALIX smoke grenade launcher of the Hornet RCWS, effectively protecting the vehicle during combat operations. The Battlenet system by Arquus coordinates all these functions together. With its Switchblade loitering missiles and the Hornet Air Guard from Hornet, the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition brings highly efficient surveillance and aggression capabilities on the battlefield, on and beyond the front lines, while ensuring its own self-protection against closerange air threats in full autonomy.
13 Oct 22. GM Defense displayed ISV for US Army Rangers. GM Defense is continuing to deliver its standard nine-person Infantry Squad Vehicle (ISV) to the US Army while also showing ways the vehicle can be modified for different mission sets, including one for army rangers.
At the annual Association of the US Army (AUSA) 2022 conference in Washington, DC, held on 10–12 October, the company displayed its traditional ISV, an all-electric version of the standard ISV, along with one that integrates changes based on what rangers want.
“US Army Rangers [with the 75th Ranger Regiment] evaluated the vehicle for their needs,” Stephen duMont, president of GM Defense, told Janes during a 5 October interview. “We provided them with a couple of ISVs to take out to Fort Irwin, California … and they gave us some great feedback.” (Source: Janes)
07 Oct 22. AM General At AUSA. “We are extremely excited to participate in this year’s AUSA, which is the perfect venue to introduce new and innovative products to support our most important customer – the Warfighter,” said John Chadbourne, AM General EVP – Chief Business Development Officer. “With the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition, we continue to push the boundaries of lethality and protection on the battlefield, and we’re proud of the collective effort we fostered with AeroVironment and Hornet to bring this concept to life.”
The company will display various vehicles with increased levels of lethality integrated onto its iconic and battle-proven mobile platforms. The HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition is a game changer on the modern battlefield with offensive and defensive capabilities – all in a vehicle that is rugged, responsive, and reliable. The HUMVEE Saber Blade edition integrates AeroVironment’s Switchblade® loitering missiles and a Hornet Air Guard Remote Controlled Weapon System (RCWS) with Counter-UAS solution by Hornet. The loitering munitions on the HUMVEE Saber Blade Edition include the Switchblade 300 and Switchblade 600 that provide rapidly deployable, loitering precision strike missiles for use against non-line-of-sight targets. The Hornet Air Guard offers anti-drone detection & neutralization capabilities to the Hornet RCWS which provides surveillance, fire, and self-protection thanks the use of air-burst ammunition and the addition of an independent drone detection ring.
“The current conflicts have demonstrated the increasing importance of drones, whether to target vehicles or for reconnaissance missions. Being able to detect and defeat such threats while maintaining the vehicle’s primary protective capacity is the ultimate capability for a Remote Control Weapon Station. That’s Hornet Air Guard ambition,” explains Jean Boy, Managing Director of Hornet.
Through continuous improvement, the HUMVEE Saber contains leap-ahead technology in a redesigned vehicle that offers increased levels of protection in a truly agile light tactical vehicle. The proprietary cabin design is redefining survivability that allows for 360-degree kinetic energy threat protection as well as blast threat protection. Built off the HUMVEE vehicle platform, the HUMVEE Saber offers maximum commonality, simplified maintenance, and streamlined fleet sustainment.
Also on display is the HUMVEE 2-CT Hawkeye Mobile Howitzer which is revolutionizing mobile artillery fires with the integration of the patented Soft Recoil Technology (SRT). SRT is a disruptive technology that will reduce the firing loads for direct and indirect weapons systems, enabling combat systems to meet emerging requirements. The vehicle can emplace, fire with higher precision, and displace in fraction of the time versus conventional towed Howitzers. The 2-CT Hawkeye is undergoing characterization testing by the US Army.
AM General will also have representatives available to provide in-depth information on engineering and logistics services, their award-winning global supply chain management, field service support, as well as parts and equipment warranty support. (Source: PR Newswire)