TERRY MURPHY TAKES THE HELM AT DRS RSTA
By Julian Nettlefold
26 Feb 09. BATTLESPACE met up with Terry Murphy the new President of DRS Technologies’ Reconnaissance, Surveillance and Target Acquisition (RSTA) segment which manufactures all the Company’s electro-optic products. RSTA has 1800 employees based at three main facilities in Melbourne, and Palm Bay, Florida, and Texas.
Terry took over from Jimmy Baird as part of the recent re-organisation at DRS. He joined DRS Technologies in 2001 and has held a variety of positions within the RSTA business unit including Vice President and General Manager of the Infrared Technologies Division and Vice President of Technical Operations for the RSTA Group. His background has centered on the development and production of EO/IR systems and components where he has held several leadership positions. These efforts have led to product found across today’s battlefield on the Abrams tank, Bradley Fighting Vehicle, Apache helicopter, Javelin Command Launch, and other 2nd generation EO/IR systems.
Prior to joining DRS, Terry worked for Texas Instruments in a variety of design, development and management positions in the area of infrared imaging components and has a record of accomplishment in advanced product development with transition to production. In addition, Mr. Murphy worked in the commercial automotive and computer products areas for Texas Instruments and Motorola where he developed a variety of sensor systems for airbags and hard disk drives. He currently holds eight patents and is co-author of several papers covering infrared products.
He served four years in the United States Navy where he was an instructor at the Naval Nuclear Power School. He earned both a B.S.E in Electrical Engineering and a M.S. in Mathematical Science from the University of Central Florida and a M.S.E.E. from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
“Where does DRS RSTA come in the rankings of EO Companies?” The Editor asked.
“The Company holds leading market positions in thermal imaging devices, combat display workstations, electronic sensor systems. DRS’s products are deployed on a wide range of high-profile military platforms, such as M1A2 Abrams Main Battle Tanks, M2A3 Bradley Fighting Vehicles, Stykers OH-58D Kiowa Warrior helicopters, AH-64 Apache helicopters. We have the best sensor portfolio of any Company in the world and we are the Number One provider of uncooled technology sensors having produced 55,000 systems to date.”
“How did you acquire this expertise?”
“We originally made the uncooled products under licence from Honeywell, DRS has had the IP for the last seven to eight years. We have a wide range of sensors and we are sole source for the Apache under sub-contract to Lockheed on the SATO 1 system and we also supply Aerovironment and Insitu for the Scan Eagle. We are also a major supplier of the mast mounted systems for the OH-58D Kiowa Warrior. In vehicles are a main sub-contractor to Raytheon for the M1A2 IBAS sight as we are to BAE Systems on the Bradley ‘A’ kit. Our infantry Thermal Weapon Sight (TWS) is a world-beating product and we have supplied 20,000 to the U.S. Army and 800 Heavy TWS to the British Army as well as some to Turkey under FMS. At the height of production requirements we were supplying 2000 TWS per month and 2400 DVE kits.”
“How are you carving up the world now that DRS is part of Finmeccania which also has a strong showing in EO systems through its Selex Galileo Company?”
“The markets are still being decided, it will take time to bring about an understanding of who does what where. We will develop synergies very early in developing this relationship. At DRS we are concentrating on our new Company structure which will give more focus to the customers.”