Sponsored By Oxley Developments
16 Apr 20. Oxley makes a switch to back NHS with PPE. Ulverston’s Oxley Group is helping the fight against Covid-19 by designing and making vital equipment for frontline health workers across the North West. The group, which usually makes LED lighting for the aerospace and defence industries, responded to a call from local NHS staff. It designed a visor and has set up an assembly line so it can produce thousands of them for free for people on the frontline. It has also donated more than 6,000 items of PPE to the NHS and is investigating the potential of supplying ventilator components. It is also actively engaged in other Covid-19 technology challenges that its world leading designers and engineers may be able to solve, it said.
Jayne Moorby, marketing manager at Oxley, said the firm was happy to help.
She added: “Following the urgent request, our design team set out to create a face visor with a simple design focusing on wearer comfort and rapid manufacturing to ensure we could get products out to the front line very quickly. Sourcing was a challenge as there is a global shortage of some materials due to high PPE demand. We created a prototype in regular dialogue with our NHS contacts to ensure this met their requirements. Our Ulverston production team set up a dedicated facility and the whole on-site team will work in shifts – following Government guidelines – to produce 800 visors a week. Our first batches left the factory this week and will be supplied into the local NHS as well as to care homes and hospices across Cumbria and Lancashire.”
Supervisor Liam Williams set up the assembly facility on site.
He said: “It has been a pleasure to be part of this project and to give my support, to know where the final product is going to be used gives us a great feeling as we know it will benefit the NHS heroes. Our shift system ensures that everyone can share in the achievement and be a part of making this happen.”
Darren Cavan, Oxley chief executive, said: “Oxley has been in Ulverston for almost 80 years, we are committed to supporting the local community. We have all been impacted by this crisis and we’re all very grateful to the health care workers doing so much to keep us all safe and well. When we were approached with this problem, we were committed to find a solution and deliver products quickly. Oxley has innovation and creativity at its heart, flexibility and the ability to respond to changing circumstances are also key values. Leading edge design and excellent quality are second nature to us as we operate in the highly demanding aerospace and defence sector.” (Source: Google/https://www.nwemail.co.uk/)
16 Apr 20. The SignalShark Real Time Spectrum Analyzer from Narda Safety Test Solutions is designed to be an open platform. By integrating a powerful computer with the Windows 10 operating system, the RF testing specialists have decided to get rid of nothing less than the system limitations of this measuring instrument. In contrast with the closed systems of its competitors, the flexibility of the SignalShark’s open platform provides test technicians and systems integrators with almost unlimited possibilities. That is because the software for most applications runs exclusively on Windows computers – and therefore runs on the SignalShark, too. One of the unique features of this high performance instrument is this on-board computer.
Almost unlimited in scope
Users can analyze and archive, visualize and export measurement results, regardless of any prescribed, specific file formats. If required, this can be done automatically, in a chosen format, and with presentation quality without the need for intermediate processing on an external PC. Users can simply load their own software packages on to the analyzer to handle user-specific services. There is an immense degree of freedom to connect additional sensors or measurement modules for the special parameters that may be encountered in infrequent measurement tasks, for example. Users can also add on almost any number of peripherals such as printers, displays, or a mouse, along with the associated drivers.
Standard languages and popular formats
“Open” means that the SignalShark family communicates in standard languages, and uses and supports the popular formats in common use in the scientific field. Naturally, this also means that the range of expansion modules can include products that are not Narda-branded devices. But, this exceptional degree of freedom does not mean that users have to make do with a sort of construction kit that needs to be put together. Not at all. In fact, this spectrum analyzer can be put into service straight from the factory without any complicated setting up or configuration, and full use made of its optimum speed, real time bandwidth, dynamic range, and sensitivity.
The “unbeatable operating system” strategy
Narda’s thinking behind the open platform strategy is simple: Because of the huge number of potential applications, it would be a complete illusion to think of providing test engineers with a universal solution that would cover 100% of all practical situations in the form of a “closed box”. So, it has to be made as easy as possible to process the measurement results and add on peripheral equipment. The logical step for Narda’s engineers was to embed windows into the system. This operating system is currently “unbeatable” when it comes to docking components or installing software modules.
So much freedom in practice
Having virtually no system limitations basically means that users can integrate and utilize things that they have become familiar with over a long time. As well as the convenience of flexibility, this primarily also means that time is saved in the daily routine, and, not least, that all those sources of error due to complicated reconfiguration can certainly be avoided. For example, one of the main tasks for the SignalShark family is to provide support for the authorities that are keeping radio networks free of interference. Technicians often have to decode the interference signals detected in the spectrum in order to accomplish this task. The open platform makes it possible to install specific decoder software for specialized services directly on the measuring instrument to cope with the rising number of digital communications channels. In the area of radio communications used by emergency services like the police and fire departments, such services include Tetra, Tetrapol and P25 to name just three.
The thoroughly open philosophy is further shown by the use of Python. This universally applicable and – thanks to its clearly structured syntax – easily learned programming language comes pre-installed on the SignalShark. It is thus a simple matter to create scripts, or smaller programs, with the aid of a popular script editor. These scripts are ideal for auto-controlling the device or for running routine jobs so the technician doesn’t have to.
The advantages of an open platform can perhaps best be illustrated using the example of the so-called “screen recorder”, one of the many possible features that can be installed on the SignalShark as needed. This application allows the actual measurement process, i.e. what is happening live on the instrument, to be recorded and this record to even be annotated with a simultaneous audio commentary by the technician using the built in microphone. These recordings can then simply be replayed on the SignalShark itself or exported as documents. These have the potential to even replace parts of the traditional operating manual in the form of modern tutorials or practical teaching videos, due to the extremely high density of information that they contain.
15 Apr 20. Teledyne e2v HiRel Unveils Family of High Power PIN Diode Limiter Modules. Limiter modules are designed for high reliability EW, radar applications. Teledyne e2v HiRel today announced a new addition to its family of high power limiters, the TDLM202402, a quasi-active S-band SMT PIN Diode Limiter that offers “always on” high power CW and peak protection.
Packaged in a small 8mm x 5mm form factor for demanding electronic warfare and radar applications, the TDLM202402 utilizes proven hybrid assembly technology. It has 50dBm (100W) CW power handling capability and 60dBm (1,000W) peak power from 2 to 4 GHz (25 µsec pulse width at 5% duty cycle). Parts are screened and qualified for high reliability applications. These power limiters have an operating temperature range of -65°C to 125°C.
The new limiter also boasts excellent thermal management features, with a proprietary design methodology that minimizes thermal resistance from the PIN Diode junction-to-base plate (RTHJ-A). The limiter design employs a two-stage detector circuit which enables ultra-fast turn-on of the high-power PIN Diodes.
“This is Teledyne e2v HiRel’s first high power limiter for military applications, and we have more in the development pipeline,” said Erik Everett, VP of Worldwide Sales at Teledyne HiRel. “We support Source Controlled Drawings, and devices are tested and shipped from our certified facility in Milpitas, California, one of the industry’s most trusted production locations.”
The TDLM202402 is designed for optimal small signal insertion loss, permitting an extremely low receiver noise figure while simultaneously offering excellent large input signal. Other key features and specifications include:
- Low insertion loss (typ): 0.5dB
- Return loss (typ): 17dB
- Low flat leakage power (typ): 14dBm
- Low spike energy leakage (typ): 0.5ergs
- Input/Output DC blocking capacitors
- RoHS compliant
(Source: BUSINESS WIRE)
14 Apr 20. Technology alliances will help shape our post-pandemic future. There’s no question the post-corona world will be very different. How it will look depends on actions the world’s leaders take. Decisions made in coming months will determine whether we see a renewed commitment to a rules-based international order, or a fragmented world increasingly dominated by authoritarianism. Whomever steps up to lead will drive the outcome.
China seeks the mantle of global leadership. Beijing is exploiting the global leadership vacuum, the fissures between the United States and its allies, and the growing strain on European unity. The Chinese Communist Party has aggressively pushed a narrative of acting swiftly and decisively to contain the virus, building goodwill through ‘mask diplomacy’, and sowing doubts about the virus’ origin to deflect blame for the magnitude of the crisis and to rewrite history. Even though the results so far are mixed, the absence of the United States on the global stage provides Beijing with good momentum.
Before the pandemic, the world’s democracies already faced their gravest challenge in decades: the shift of economic power to illiberal states. By late 2019, autocratic regimes accounted for a larger share of global GDP than democracies for the first time since 1900. As former U.K. foreign secretary David Miliband recently observed, “liberal democracy is in retreat.” How the United States and like-minded partners respond post-pandemic will determine if that trend holds.
There is urgency to act — the problem is now even more acute. The countries that figure out how to quickly restart and rebuild their economies post-pandemic will set the course for the 21st century. It is not only economic heft that is of concern: political power and military might go hand in hand with economic dominance.
At the center of this geostrategic and economic competition are technologies — artificial intelligence, quantum computing, biotechnology, and 5G — that will be the backbone of the 21st century economy. Leadership and ongoing innovation in these areas will confer critical economic, political, and military power, and the opportunity to shape global norms and values. The pre-crisis trajectory of waning clout in technology development, standards-setting, and proliferation posed an unacceptable and avoidable challenge to the interests of the world’s leading liberal-democratic states.
The current crisis accentuates this even more: it lays bare the need to rethink and restructure global supply chains; the imperative of ensuring telecommunication networks are secure, robust, and resilient; the ability to surge production of critical materiel, and the need to deter and counteract destructive disinformation. This is difficult and costly — and it is best done in concert.
Bold action is needed to set a new course that enhances the ability of the world’s democracies to out-compete increasingly capable illiberal states. The growing clout of authoritarian regimes is not rooted in better strategy or more effective statecraft. Rather, it lies in the fractious and complacent nature of the world’s democracies and leading technology powers.
In response, a new multilateral effort — an alliance framework — is needed to reverse these trends. The world’s technology and democracy leaders — the G7 members and countries like Australia, the Netherlands, and South Korea — should join forces to tackle matters of technology policy. The purpose of this initiative is three-fold: one, regain the initiative in the global technology competition through strengthened cooperation between like-minded countries; two, protect and preserve key areas of competitive technological advantage; and three, promote collective norms and values around the use of emerging technologies.
Such cooperation is vital to effectively deal with the hardest geopolitical issues that increasingly center on technology, from competing economically to building deterrence to combating disinformation. This group should not be an exclusive club: it should also work with countries like Finland and Sweden to align policies on telecommunications; Estonia, Israel, and New Zealand for cyber issues; and states around the world to craft efforts to counter the proliferation of Chinese surveillance technology and offer sound alternatives to infrastructure development, raw material extraction, and loans from China that erode their sovereignty.
The spectrum of scale and ambition this alliance can tackle is broad. Better information sharing would yield benefits on matters like investment screening, counterespionage, and fighting disinformation. Investments in new semiconductor fabs could create more secure and diverse supply chains. A concerted effort to promote open architecture in 5G could usher in a paradigm shift for an entire industry. Collaboration will also be essential to avoiding another pandemic calamity.
Similar ideas are percolating among current and former government leaders in capitals such as Tokyo, Berlin, London, and Washington, with thought leaders like Jared Cohen and Anja Manuel, and in think tanks around the world. The task at hand is to collate these ideas, find the common ground, and devise an executable plan. This requires tackling issues like organizational structure, governance, and institutionalization. It also requires making sure that stakeholders from government, industry, and civil society from around the world provide input to make the alliance framework realistic and successful.
No one country can expect to achieve its full potential by going it alone, not even the United States. An alliance framework for technology policy is the best way to ensure that the world’s democracies can effectively compete economically, politically, and militarily in the 21st century. The links between the world’s leading democracies remain strong despite the challenges of the current crisis. These relationships are an enduring and critical advantage that no autocratic country can match. It is time to capitalize on these strengths, retake the initiative, and shape the post-corona world. (Source: C4ISR & Networks)
14 Apr 20. As the U.S. and the world take on the challenge of combating the novel coronavirus, General Atomics (GA) and its affiliates are leveraging their expertise in manufacturing and innovation to meet the urgent needs of our communities. At GA facilities in San Diego and across the country, test kit development, 3D printing of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and ventilator component manufacturing are underway to assist in the fight against COVID-19 at a local, state and national level.
- GA, Diazyme is offering a COVID-19 Antibody test from blood draws (serum or plasma). Under the FDA’s policy for Public Health Emergency for COVID-19, Diazyme utilized the notification process as outlined in Section IVD of the policy and is now listed on the FDA’s FAQ site dedicated to serological (Antibody) testing. The Diazyme’s sensitive test is run on a fully-automated Diazyme DZ-Lite 3000 chemiluminescence analyzer. Diazyme is already working with multiple clinical laboratories around the country, including the UCSD Medical Center to perform these serological tests. Serological tests are not for sole diagnosis of the COVID-19 disease but are valuable in understanding community spread of the disease.
- Diazyme has also notified the FDA of a rapid COVID-19 Antibody test. This point-of-care test requires only a single drop of blood and provides results within 10-15 minutes. Rapid tests tend to be less sensitive than the lab run tests but are easy to use and can be performed at the point-of-care (doctor’s office, community clinics) and is useful in identifying people who may have been exposed to COVID-19, as well as those who have already recovered, but were unaware that they had been infected.
- More information about Diazyme’s tests including regulatory statutory statements can be found at http://www.diazyme.com/dz-lite-sars-cov-2
- GA, Electromagnetic Systems (GA-EMS) group is pursuing component manufacturing and integration services to help scale up production of ventilators. With extensive manufacturing facilities located across the U.S., GA-EMS provides a convenient, US-sourced option to help companies rapidly increase their production capacity to meet the high demand for critical medical equipment. GA-EMS has also tested their first generation mechanized bag valve mask. The system would fit into a backpack and could replace human interaction with the bag enabling more controlled and repeatable tides for infants, children and adults.
- GA-EMS, GA-Energy group, and GA-ASI adapted their prototyping and production capacities to produce 3D-printed face shields to meet local demand for PPE. Since late March, the joint team has manufactured and shipped over 5,000 face shields in the greater San Diego area and across the nation.
- GA-EMS is accelerating the development schedule of its MATCHBOX™ Point-of-Care molecular diagnostic platform responding to the growing need for COVID-19 testing. MATCHBOX is expected to have the capability to test and diagnose for a wide range of known respiratory infections, including COVID-19, within 30-60 minutes using a single patient sample using a portable point-of-care instrument.
“The health, safety and well-being of our employees and our communities at large is a top priority for GA,” said Neal Blue, GA Chairman and CEO. “GA has been delivering solutions in support of public health for decades, and with so many in need during this unprecedented time, we have concentrated our collective efforts to address the current pandemic. I salute colleagues as they continue to innovate and look for creative solutions to the current crisis.”
14 Apr 20. Covid-19: Microsoft, C3.ai lead effort to leverage AI for battling pandemic. Microsoft is one of several players in a new consortium of government, private, and academic institutions created to leverage recent advances made in artificial intelligence (AI) to develop strategies and technological responses to help curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19).
Led by California-based software development firm C3.ai, the newly-formed consortium, dubbed the Digital Transformation Institute, issued a call for proposals in late March, offering research and development (R&D) grants for initiatives focusing on the application of AI-centric technologies to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.
C3.ai has been the recipient of several Pentagon acquisition contracts, issued by the department’s Defense Innovation Unit (DIU), focusing on the use of AI to improve aircraft operations, maintenance, and overall readiness within the US fleet. (Source: Jane’s)
13 Apr 20. Sky Sapience introduces its newest generation tethered UAV platform, HoverMast- Lite (HM-L1 and HM-L3.) Designed to function as smaller, light-weight versions of their flagship HoverMast platform, the HM-L systems will be used in tandem with small robotic vehicles participating in the RCV/SMET programs. The HM-L systems maintain the impressive capabilities of the original HoverMast product line; such as 100m hovering, 24/7/365, autonomous, on the move, bad weather operations, fiber optic communication, cyber immunity and operation in GPS denied environments, while also meeting the size, weight and electric power requirements of the RCV and SMET programs.
The unique design concept behind the HoverMast-Lite enables the tethered drone and sensors operation without limiting the vehicle’s continuous work. Moreover, the HM-L does not occupy the vehicle’s bed, allowing it to remain available for additional equipment and sensors. The HM-L concept is internationally patent protected. The HoverMast-Lite has the ability to incorporate most payloads weighing up to 6.0 kg; including CCD/IR cameras, radars, lasers, cellular and mesh communication devices, hyperspectral sensors and cyber systems. The HM-Lite and its payload are both easily and intuitively controlled and monitored from a single ruggedized Human- Machine Interface (UHMI.)
Gabriel Shachor, founder and CEO of Sky Sapience said, “We’re excited to be offering a fully compatible tethered UAV platform for the RCV and SMET programs. As the sole producer of mobile, operational experienced tethered machines, Sky Sapience has a unique advantage when answering the governments’ calls for increasingly innovative and adaptive technologies to support their endeavors in robotics and beyond. We hope to serve the leading forces with the HoverMast-Lite innovative technology.”
13 Apr 20. USAF awards Lockheed Martin Avionics Tech Refresh contract to advance U-2’s capabilities for the Future Battlespace. Lockheed Martin Skunk Works® continues to evolve the U-2 Dragon Lady to support future battlespace needs under a recent contract award from the U.S. Air Force valued at $50m.
The contract includes the following upgrades to the Dragon Lady:
- An updated avionics suite that modernizes the U-2’s onboard systems to readily accept and use new technology.
- A new mission computer designed to the U.S. Air Force’s open mission systems (OMS) standard that enables the U-2 to integrate with systems across air, space, sea, land and cyber domains at disparate security levels.
- New, modern cockpit displays to make everyday pilot tasks easier while enhancing presentation of the data the aircraft collects to enable faster, better informed decisions.
“As a proven, agile and reliable aircraft, the U-2S is the most capable high-altitude ISR system in the fleet today. The Avionics Tech Refresh contract will continue our commitment of providing a premier aircraft to our warfighters, ensuring global security now and into the future,” said Irene Helley, U-2 program director.
Under this contract, Lockheed Martin will lead the design, integration and test of the new advanced aircraft components, which will enable the U-2 to be the first fully OMS-compliant fleet. Interim fielding is anticipated to begin in mid-2021, with fleet modification expected in early 2022.
Connecting the Future
The U.S. Air Force’s ability to operate anytime, anywhere is essential. The proven, agile and reliable U-2S Dragon Lady flies 24/7/365 to ensure global security with unparalleled performance.
With a unique, modular design, the U-2S demonstrates and proves new technologies in weeks – not years – enabling the rapid fielding of next generation capabilities for the warfighter today while furthering technology needed for the future.
Superior Battlespace Awareness
The future is all about speed and data – getting the right information to the right person at the right time. Advancements to systems onboard the U-2S will allow the aircraft to simultaneously collect, analyze and share data, providing a complete battlespace picture in the not too distant future.
New Capabilities Now
The modularity of the U-2S allows the aircraft to quickly adapt to dynamic mission needs and respond to emerging threats anytime, anywhere. The modernized multi-role aircraft coupled with long-range standoff sensors and onboard processing enables the U-2S to operate in and around contested areas with ease while rapidly enabling 4th and 5th generation systems. Its unique design and open architecture allows for the latest sensors and equipment to be added to the aircraft quickly and cost-effectively.
Path to the Future
The U-2S is transforming the future battlespace by proving emerging technologies and rapidly fielding new capabilities that help our armed forces envision a new way to fight. This enables enhanced capabilities for the warfighter today, while advancing critical technologies needed for the future.
Keeping the U-2S Mission Ready
As part of a longstanding partnership with the U.S. Air Force, Lockheed Martin provides critical sustainment services in support of the U-2S’ 24/7/365 operations. A thorough interval extension program for maintenance activities continues to enhance the affordability of the U-2S throughout its life cycle. (Source: Aerospace Daily & Defense Report)
Oxley Group Ltd
Oxley specialises in the design and manufacture of advanced electronic and electro-optic components and systems for air, land and sea applications within the military sector. Established in 1942, Oxley has manufacturing facilities in the UK and USA and enjoys representation worldwide. The company’s products include night vision and LED lighting, data capture systems and electronic components. Oxley has pioneered the development of night vision compatible lighting. It offers a total package incorporating optical filters, equipment modification, cockpit and external lighting along with fleet wide upgrade services including engineering, installation, support, maintenance and training. The company’s long experience of manufacturing night vision lighting and LED indicators, coupled with advances in LED technology, has enabled it to develop LED solutions to replace incandescent and fluorescent lighting in existing applications as well as becoming the lighting option of choice in new applications such as portable military hospitals, UAV control stations and communication shelters.