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20 Dec 06. The reception of the first A400M Horizontal Tail Plane took place today at the EADS CASA final assembly line in San Pablo (Seville). This Horizontal Tail Plane was sent from the EADS CASA facilities in Tablada where it is produced, to the structural test facilities of the Final Assembly Line, where it will undergo a series of tests before its assembly on the aircraft.
Today’s event represents a special milestone for EADS CASA since this Horizontal Tail Plane is the first A400M component delivered to the Final Assembly Line where assembly, final integration, and flight test of the A400M will take place. This is a further demonstration that the A400M programme is continuing to fully meet its targets. The Horizontal Tail Plane is constructed mainly of Carbon Fibre Composite Material and incorporates the most advanced materials, technologies and manufacturing processes resulting from the vast experience of EADS CASA in developing stabilizers. It has been designed and manufactured by EADS CASA in collaboration with Airbus Spain together with a number of other industrial partners including SACESA, SK10 and ICSA CTRM. The assembly and installation of the various systems is undertaken at Tablada using the most advanced jig systems, tooling and assembling processes.

19 Dec 06. Validating performance and reliability of the Excalibur Block 1a-1 production configuration, Raytheon Missile Systems and BAE Systems-Bofors successfully fired 25 GPS-guided Excalibur projectiles during an extensive First Article Test series in November.

18 Dec 06. Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. Ltd. aims to mass-produce spark-resistant batteries, eyeing a potential sales opportunity following incidents involving rivals’ battery packs. The Panasonic brand maker said it has boosted its production capacity of batteries insulated with heatproof layers to five million units per month, up from 100,000 in April. Japanese rivals and battery market leaders Sony Corp. and Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd. have been hit by recalls of high-power batteries for PCs and cellphones, following much-publicized incidents in which batteries ignited. Matsushita hopes to raise production of heat-resistant batteries for laptops first, and aims to raise production of insulated batteries to half of all lithium-ion batteries it makes in 2009, said spokesman Akira Kadota. (Source: Reuters)

07 Dec 06. General Dynamics NASSCO Starts Construction of Sixth T-AKE Ship. General Dynamics NASSCO, a wholly owned subsidiary of General Dynamics, today announced the start of construction on the sixth dry cargo-ammunition ship in the U.S. Navy’s T-AKE program. The ship is scheduled to be delivered to the Navy in the fourth quarter of 2008. The lead ship of the class, USNS Lewis and Clark (T-AKE 1), was delivered to the Navy last June. The second ship, USNS Sacagawea, will go to sea for Builder’s Trials on December 14 and will be delivered to the Navy in the first quarter of 2007. The third ship, USNS Alan Shepard, was launched on December 6, and is scheduled to be delivered in the second quarter of 2007. The fourth and fifth T-AKE ships, currently under construction, are the Richard E. Byrd and Robert E. Peary, respectively. The T-AKE ships are 210 meters (689 feet) in length and 32.2 meters (105.6 feet) in beam, with a design draft of 9.12 meters (29.9 feet) and a displacement of 41,000 metric tons. NASSCO has incorporated international marine technologies and commercial ship-design features into the ships, including an integrated electric-drive propulsion system, to minimize operating costs over their projected 40-year service life.

15 Dec 06. NetFires LLC, a company composed of Raytheon Company’s Missile Systems business and Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, successfully passed a joint critical design review (CDR) for the Non Line-of-Sight-Launch System Precision Attack Missile and C

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