Definitely Not First
An article titled "Resourceful Rafale" appeared in the September 2000 issue of Avionics Magazine (page 16) and included the following statement on page 21: "The Thomson-CSF SB25A is said to be the first combined interrogator/transponder to use electronic scanning technology." In fact, the SB25A was not the first IFF interrogator/ transponder to utilize electronic scanning technology. It was, at best, the fourth such system.
The French government authorized Thomson-CSF to develop the SB25A interrogator/transponder system for the Rafale in 1993. Prior to that development by Thomson, there were already in production at least two other IFF interrogator/transponders utilizing electronically scanned interrogator antennas. These are manufactured by the Advanced Systems unit of BAE Systems:
The AN/APX-111 (V) developed for the Boeing F/A-18 Kuwait FMS program in 1987; and
The AN/APX-113 developed for the NATO MLU F-16 in 1991.
Both of these BAE Systems combined interrogator/transponders are currently in production for various fighter aircraft applications worldwide. More than 1,000 systems have been produced to date.
I read your Editor’s Note in July 2000 issue (page 4) entitled "Aircraft for Everyone." I am creating a nonprofit organization, Skyaid, to save 100,000 lives per year, which will be using "aircraft for everyone." I realize that conventional wisdom says that new aircraft designs will not be available for 20 to 25 years. Skyaid will be pushing the technology development so as to save lives with new aircraft by 2005.
By the way, I have been on the technical advisory board for Moller International for most of the past decade, while working at Boeing. Our Website, www.skyaid.org, has lots of details.
A visit to the Skyaid Website indicates that the organization was set up to develop "rapid emergency response," primarily for victims of heart attacks, strokes, fires and accidents. Moller International is a California-based company that developed a concept for a personalized air vehicle. –Editor
An Errant "S"
On page 31 of the August 2000 article on the C-5 modernization, Lockheed Martin Federal Systems is mentioned as being in Oswego, N.Y. We are actually in Owego, N.Y., a different city from Oswego, which is located north of Syracuse.
Also note that our official site name has been changed to Lockheed Martin Systems Integration-Owego.
Manager, Processor Subsystems
Lockheed Martin Systems Integration-Owego, N.Y.
Having lived in Syracuse, I should have known the difference. Oswego is north, while Owego is south of Syracuse. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. –Editor