26 Mar 12. GKN Aerospace is harnessing leading-edge laser technology to automate the repair of composite structures. The repaired structure has the strength of the current manual repair but is achieved with greater consistency and up to 60 percent lower cost. With programme partners SCLR Lasertechnik GmbH (SLCR), GKN Aerospace has installed the first prototype robotic machine using laser technology to remove damaged composite structure on aircraft. The new robotic cell, housed at GKN Aerospace’s composites research centre in the UK, replaces the time consuming, manual grinding away of damaged structure with a precise, contact and vibration-free laser removal process. The new process uses lasers to remove damaged material, leaving the remaining fibres and resin intact. The technique applies no force or vibration onto the structure and so has no detrimental impact on its overall strength or integrity. The affected area is left clean and ready for repair using a replacement patch which is cured in place using a localised heating mat.
29 Mar 12. Raytheon Company has started procuring components required to build the Munitions Control Units for 126 of the Indian Air Force’s Jaguar Darin II attack aircraft. The MCU enables integration of modern weapons on legacy aircraft with minimal to no modifications to aircraft wiring and the flight or stores management software. The MCU’s compact size enables it to be located in a weapons pylon or avionics bay of a legacy aircraft. From there, it interfaces between “smart” weapons and the existing software of a legacy aircraft. “Providing the IAF the capability to enhance their Jaguar fleet is the latest chapter in Raytheon’s six-decade history of trusted partnership in India,” said Harry Schulte, Raytheon Missile Systems’ vice president of Air Warfare Systems. “MCU will give the Jaguar the capability to employ ‘smart’ or ‘advanced’ weapons like the Joint Standoff Weapon, Maverick missile, Paveway™ precision-guided munition and AIM-9M Sidewinder air-to-air missile.”
Raytheon was awarded a contract to build the MCU in 2011, and funding was authorized for the system in 2012. In anticipation of the contract, Raytheon began preliminary work to integrate MCU on Jaguar in 2008.
28 Mar 12. Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) and KONGSBERG hosted an event on Capitol Hill celebrating delivery of the 10,000th PROTECTOR CROWS from KONGSBERG’s Johnstown, PA factory. The event marks a significant achievement for this successful five-year U.S. Army program of record providing key equipment that protects troops in combat. “KONGSBERG is proud to supply the U.S. Army with the PROTECTOR CROWS, an affordable and proven system that reduces risk, increases survivability and offers the flexibility to meet the needs of future requirements” (Source: Yahoo!/BUSINESS WIRE)
30 Mar 12. As part of its continuing quest to provide customers with cutting-edge solutions defence and security company Saab has successfully tested a 3rd generation High Speed Directed Launcher (HSDL-306). The directed launcher is an important sub-system of the Land Electronic Defence System (LEDS) that enables the system to guarantee hemispherical coverage and multiple shot capabilities to the installed platform. The tests were carried out mid March inCenturion,South Africa, and mark an important milestone in enhancement of Saab’s active protection offer for ground vehicles. The tests included deployment of GALIX 13 multispectral smoke from Etienne Lacroix, France. The tests included a combination of coverage angles and different dispensing sequences. The HSDL was mounted on a Piranha protected vehicle variant to also test integration design and monitor aspects like recoil and power consumption reduction. The primary benefits offered by this next-generation launcher are the reduction in power consumption, size and weight. It also offers future design flexibility in terms of different payload options and operational mission applications. The HSDL-