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22 Dec 05. DRS EW & Network Systems unit in Buffalo, New York, has been appraised as fully compliant at Maturity Level 3 with the Software Engineering Institute’s (SEI) Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI). The CMMI rating, a more comprehensive successor to the Capability Maturity Model (CMM) rating, is being used as a prerequisite and critical evaluation factor for the acquisition of military programs with significant systems and software engineering content. The Maturity Level 3 rating confirms that the company’s DRS EW & Network
Systems unit has established effective, well-defined systems and software development processes that meet all of the requirements for providing products for both Department of Defense (DoD) mission-critical and industrial applications.

04 Jan 06. General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems announced today that its Maritime Digital Systems operations in Florham Park, N.J., Greensboro, N.C., and Pittsfield, Mass., have achieved the Software Engineering Institute’s (SEI) Capability Maturity Model (CMMI®) Level 5 rating, the highest rating attainable.

27 Dec 05. JCB is counting on tough new anti-pollution standards set by European and North American regulators to spur demand for a new generation of diesel engines it is developing. It believes they improve on the environmental performance of many engines made by competitors. The engines are being made in a plant set up by JCB in Church Broughton, Derbyshire. This follows an £80m development programme considered unusual in the construction equipment industry because JCB had never before made its own engines, but had bought them largely from Caterpillar of the US, one of its biggest rivals. These engines had been sold to the privately-owned UK company by Perkins, a subsidiary of Caterpillar that is a leading engine supplier and is based in Britain. JCB is developing the new engines primarily for its own needs, although it will agree to sell them to others as well. They are designed to help comply with new regulations governing the output of potentially hazardous by-products of engines such as nitrogen oxides and carbon particulates. Sir Anthony Bamford, JCB’s chairman and main owner, disclosed to the Financial Times that he had offered Caterpillar the chance to participate in the development of the new family of JCB engines, possibly in exchange for the US company putting up some of the development costs. Sir Anthony said: “We felt that our engines would be an advance on whatever Caterpillar was able to build and it troubled me that they were trying to find an answer [to the technical task of developing new environmentally friendly engines] using old ideas.” The JCB chairman said Caterpillar did not react “favourably” to his idea and that it never went any further. Commenting on Caterpillar’s relationship with JCB, Hans Haefeli, chief executive of the company’s Perkins Engines subsidiary, said: “No-one likes to lose business with a customer. However, the impact on us [of the loss of JCB business] is small and we expect to maintain a strong working relationship with JCB in the future.” It is likely that Perkins will supply a few thousand relatively small engines a year to JCB in the coming years, because these are outside the size range of the new engines made by the UK company. However, Perkins has been used to selling to JCB up to about 25,000 engines a year, about a quarter of the output of its main plant in Peterborough. The Church Broughton plant has been designed to make about 45,000 engines a year and in 2006 is expected to make 25,000 of the devices. It is thought Sir Anthony would ultimately like to make 50,000 engines a year and sell at least a fifth of these to outside customers. The rest would be used internally for installation in products such as JCB back-hoe loaders and excavators. (Source: FT)

03 Jan 06. Troops conducting urban operations

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