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10 May 13. Astro Pak Corporation developed new and improved processes and techniques that will significantly improve its ability to reduce non-volatile residue (NVR) on a variety of componentry and hardware. Astro Pak was honored to be included in aiding the teams from MIT and California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and JPL on the multi-billion dollar advance LIGO project to achieve critical, and previously difficult to attain NVR levels on the project’s critical hardware. For the past 2 years Astro Pak has been working to support the prestigious research institutions by developing a chemical cleaning process that could attain the target NVR residue criteria of 50 nanograms (50 billionths of a gram) per square centimeter. The hardware for this particular project consisted of Stainless Steel and Aluminum hardware/plates that weighed over 700 pounds, and included many square feet of surface area along with complex geometries and thousands of drilled holes — including threaded holes, blind holes, and holes that transitioned from one diameter to another. Astro Pak faced a considerable challenge of developing a chemical cleaning process that would reliably produce acceptable residue limits on such difficult to clean substrate materials. Through careful experimentation and process development based on knowledge gained by over 50 years in the precision cleaning business, Astro Pak successfully delivered a cleaning solution that was less harmful to the environment than the typical solvent-based precision cleaning agents commonly used in the past. (Source: Yahoo!/Marketwired)

15 May 13. DRS Technologies, Inc. received certification for its mobile X46-V Communications On-the-Move Terminal to operate on U.S. Department of Defense high-capacity communication satellites. The certification will allow users of these mobile terminals to connect to the U.S. military’s Global Information Grid, giving warfighters greater flexibility and global support. DRS received the first X-Band On-the-Move certification by the Department of Defense’s Joint SATCOM Engineering Center and the Army Strategic Command for its mobile X-Band system. The certification enables access to the Wideband Global SATCOM (WGS) satellite constellation, allowing users a direct connection to voice, data and video capabilities for collecting, processing, storing, disseminating and managing information. The X46-V is mission ready in a deployable package and has completed MIL-STD-461 and MIL-STD-810 certification. Utilizing U.S. government wideband communications satellites, DRS’s X46-V allows a data transfer rate of up to 6Mbps. The system also operates on Ku and Ka bands, giving users additional flexibility to access both commercial and military satellite constellations. (Source: Yahoo!/PRNewswire)

15 May 13. Singapore Army commissions upgraded battlefield communications system. The Singapore Army has commissioned a domestically manufactured wide area communications (WAC) system, designed to enhance its battlefield communication capabilities, during an official ceremony at Stagmont Camp in Choa Chu Kang, Singapore. Jointly manufactured by the army’s Signal Formation, Defence Science Technology Agency and Singapore Technologies, the system is expected to transform the Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) into a third-generation integrated fighting force. Speaking during the ceremony, Singapore State Defence senior minister Chan Chun
Sing said the powerful and responsive system would enable development of a networked fighting force capable of conducting a broad spectrum of operations. The upgraded WAC system is made up of a Ku-Band Satellite Communications (SATCOM) system and Digitised Trunk Communications System (D-TCS), which is capable of linking fighting forces to the command headquarters through a high bandwidth data network in the battl

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