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* BAE plans to spend £15m to transform its Newcastle Works journalists were told at DSEI. We have stated before that hourly costs at Newcastle are £70.00 compared to £45.00 for ABRO’s Donnington Plant. This money would form an addition to a total of £40m. BAE will use this money to bring the plant to a suitable state to win the role as Systems Integrator for FRES. However when questioned by the Editor, BAE Systems admitted that the money would only be spent in the event of a win on FRES. However, observers at DSEI suggested that the Integrator role contract has been delayed and may not even happen as the three vehicles bidders, GD, Nexter and Artec may supply the vehicles in a state which does not require a separate integrator. This is particularly true of GDUK where the company is already the integrator for the Bowman system and has the in-house capability at Ashchurch to undertake the whole job in-house, thus saving time and money. Given that the Utility Vehicle supplier will be chosen by late November at the earliest, if a single down-select is made, which some observers now see as less likely, then the Integrator will be chosen in mid-2008. As work is going through the plant until at least 2010, BATTLESPACE assumes that the upgrade will happen after that. Sources believe that BAE supremo, Mike Tuner, whose contract renewal is believed to be in the pending tray, was fighting BAE’s corner in hard-man style on Friday with Lord Drayson.

* LINE-X Corporation, well known among millions of truck owners for its durable spray-on truck bedliners, is steadily gaining recognition for its revolutionary PAXCON® brand of blast-resistant coatings, currently being used at the Pentagon as part of a multi-year reconstruction project following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. LINE-X exhibited PAXCON at DSEI.

“What we’re doing now has the potential to save lives,” Steve Decker, LINE-X Vice President of PAXCON and Special Applications, told Fox 5 News. “In a typical bomb blast, 80 percent of the casualty comes from fragmentation of the building. The whole concept behind the PAXCON product is to mitigate that fragmentation by containing it, and increasing the exit time for the occupants of the building.”

The application of LINE-X’s revolutionary product provides a seamless, flexible and ultra strong super-powerful coating to wood, metal, brick, mortar, block and virtually any other surface. The polymer coating remains flexible from -40º to 160ºC, is abrasion-resistant, chemical-resistant, fire retardant, and meets all EPA emission levels for V.O.C’s. Tests performed by the company using 200 pounds of TNT detonated at a 30-foot distance were shown to substantially reduce disintegration of building materials. In a separate test, a wall coated with the LINE-X industrial product remained intact up to a detonation equivalent of 1,000 pounds of TNT.

Today, LINE-X is focused on expanding applications of its PAXCON polymer coatings to include a wide range of blast mitigation applications, including helicopter pads, HMMWV (Humvees), and the coating of small-arms protective inserts for military ballistic vests currently being used by military personnel in high-risk areas such as Iraq and Afghanistan.

Naval applications include boat and submarine decks, and marine gangways. In addition, LINE-X polymer coating products have been demonstrated to provide effective protection for numerous civil and peacetime applications such as flight simulators, storage cases and UAV launch trailers. Because of the increased emphasis on homeland security and anti-terrorism initiatives in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, PAXCON coatings have been recognized by the U.S. military and the defense industry for their high levels of protection.

In 2001, the Air Force Research Laboratory released technical specs for using a LINE-X proprietary product for blast mitigation. A year later, LINE-X’s product was statistically shown to outp

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