Thursday, August 1, 2002
Boeing Nabs JTRS
A Boeing team won an $857-million U.S. Army contract to develop the Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS), a software-based communications system that will form the basis for all future U.S. military tactical radios. The contract covers initial system development and demonstration, plus low-rate initial production (LRIP) phases for the Cluster 1 package. Cluster 1 includes radios for ground vehicles, helicopters–such as the AH-64 Apache and the RAH-66 Comanche–Army and Air Force tactical air control parties and Marine Corps ground units. Boeing’s team includes TRW, Rockwell Collins and BAE Systems, partnered with Harris. Boeing defeated a team led by Raytheon, including General Dynamics, ITT, SAIC, a separate unit of TRW, Thales and ViaSat.
As Cluster 1 prime, Boeing is to design and integrate the JTRS architecture, integrate new and legacy waveforms, develop a new wideband networking waveform and qualify two hardware production sources to provide up to 10,000 vehicle and airborne systems through LRIP. Boeing team members, BAE-Harris and Collins will compete against each other for radio production.
U.S. military forces are expected to replace today’s 750,000 tactical navigation, positioning, location, identification, air/ground, air/air, ground/ground and satcom radios–25 to 30 families in all–with 250,000 to 750,000 JTRS units. The system will provide software-loadable waveforms and bridging capability to connect different channels together, permitting interoperable voice, data and video. Visit www.boeing.com.
Thales Onboard H-1
Bell Helicopter has selected the TopOwl helmet-mounted sight and display (HMD) system produced by Thales Avionics to equip 180 U.S. Marine Corps Cobra AH-1Z and 100 Huey UH-1Y helicopters, a major U.S. win for the French company. Thales is to deliver 16 pre-production units, starting in November this year, and to begin production of 560 units in early 2004. The TopOwl system’s visor projection technology includes both image intensifiers and forward-looking infrared (FLIR). The Thales offering was chosen after a trade study of manufacturers worldwide.
The HMD already has been ordered by the armed forces of France, Italy, Germany, Portugal, Australia, Sweden, Norway, Finland and South Africa. More than 1,000 will be used on the Tiger, NH 90 and Rooivalk military helicopters, according to the company. TopOwl provides a binocular display with a 40-degree, visor-projected field of view. Visor projection can include FLIR or video imagery, as well as stroke symbology. Operational applications of the HMD include piloting, navigation, target designation, and weapon aiming and firing. Visit www.thalesgroup.com.
Honeywell’s Weather Information Network (WINN) service has been made available to air transport, regional and cargo carriers, following a four-month trial on an Airbus 320. WINN permits pilots and operations centers to view weather patterns in full-color graphics or text to assist them in routing aircraft around adverse weather. Near-real time, worldwide weather data is collected and processed at the Honeywell Data Center and transmitted to pilots at specified intervals. Honeywell served as the system integrator on the NASA cooperative research project, which included organizations such as ARINC, SITA, the National Center for Atmospheric Research, United Airlines, Kavouras Inc. and the National Weather Service Aviation Weather Center. Honeywell also provides the airborne server and displays. Visit www.honeywell.com.
Garrett Aviation has received supplemental type certification (STC) for reduced vertical separation minima (RVSM) operation on the Gulfstream G-IIB. The company earlier earned RVSM certification on the Cessna 500-series aircraft. The G-IIB RVSM package includes dual Honeywell AZ-960 digital air data computers, dual BA-250 altimeters and an AL-860 altitude alerter. The installation uses existing pitot-static sources and plumbing and fully coupled autopilot (SP-50G or SPZ-800). RVSM reduces minimum vertical separation above flight level 290 from 2,000 to 1,000 feet. The RVSM deadline for the domestic United States and southern Canada is 2004. Visit www.garrettaviation.com.
Black Hawk EW
Israel’s air force has selected the electronic missile warning system produced by Elta Electronics, a wholly owned subsidiary of Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), for its new fleet of Black Hawk helicopters. The electronic warfare system detects missile approach, warns the crew and automatically activates countermeasures. The contract is valued at $5.6 million. Visit www.iai.co.il.
F/A-18 Recon Pod
Raytheon has delivered to the U.S. Navy the first engineering and manufacturing development (EMD)-version unit for the SHAred Reconnaissance Pod (SHARP) program. The service plans to introduce SHARP on the F/A-18F for deployment on the USS Nimitz in mid-2003. The system is multifunctional and adaptable to several airborne platforms for tactical, manned airborne reconnaissance. It can conduct airborne and ground screening simultaneously. It is also a replacement for the Tactical Airborne Reconnaissance Pod System on the F-14. Visit http://pma265.navair.navy.mil.
Estonian air navigation services has inaugurated a civil air traffic management (ATM) system provided by Thales ATM and located in the Estonian capital, Tallinn. Air traffic in Estonia has grown by more than 16 percent per year in the last 10 years, and there were more than 85,000 flights last year, according to Thales. The new system includes a Eurocat 2000 ATC center for en-route control of airspace and approach tower control for the Tallinn airport. The center is equipped with nine ATC workstations, including radar controller and planning positions, one air traffic generator position, one technical monitoring and control working position, a simulator with positions for two pseudo pilots and one trainee, and an offline system. Visit www.thalesatm.com.
Delta Air Lines has tapped Teledyne Controls of Los Angeles to supply the carrier’s Controller Pilot Data Link Communications (CPDLC) avionics for the Build 1 trial in Miami en-route airspace. Four Delta Boeing 767-400 aircraft will be equipped with Teledyne ARINC 758 communications management units (CMUs) and Thales-designed ARINC 750 VHF data radios (VDRs).
The CMU in this aeronautical telecommunications network (ATN)-compliant installation serves as the ATN router of the aircraft subnetwork and hosts the CPDLC message set and Delta-specific airline operational control (AOC) applications software, providing traditional aircraft communication addressing and reporting system (ACARS) functions. Delta is scheduled to operate its first CPDLC-equipped aircraft in the Miami airspace in the first quarter of 2003. Visit www.teledyne.com.
Lockheed Martin Aeronautics Co., Marietta, Ga., has begun installing new digital cockpit systems on a C-5B aircraft under the development, integration and test (DIT) phase of the engineering and manufacturing development (EMD) contract for the Air Force’s C-5 Avionics Modernization Program (AMP). Lockheed Martin also will install the new avionics on a C-5A during EMD. The new aircraft systems include seven 6-by-8-inch, flat panel liquid crystal displays; dual, embedded, 12-channel GPS/INS; multimode communications receivers, including Aero-I satcom and HF data link; enhanced ground proximity warning system (EGPWS); and traffic alert collision avoidance system (TCAS). The two aircraft will be used to prove out the kit designs and installation plans in preparation for the eventual modification of the entire C-5 fleet, according to the company.
The second phase of the modernization effort, known as the reliability enhancement and re-engining program (RERP), aims at increasing fleet availability and decreasing total ownership costs. Lockheed Martin won a $1.1-billion RERP award in December 2001. Visit www.lmaeronautics.com and www.lockheedmartin.com.
Danish ATC Simulator
Raytheon Canada has completed work on the Copenhagen air traffic control (ATC) simulator for NAVIAIR, in Denmark. The milestone marks the culmination of system deliveries, resulting in the completion of a large ATC training capability. The simulator includes radar simulation–with 34 controller and pseudo pilot positions–and tower simulation. Tower simulation includes a three-dimensional tower and five two-dimensional tower trainers. Overall, nearly 60 trainee and pseudo pilot positions are provided. Visit www.raytheon.com.
Park Air Systems received a contract extension to expand the scope of existing installations of the company’s NOVA surface movement guidance and control system at Paris’ Charles de Gaulle (CdG) and Orly airports. After a fourth runway is activated at CdG, Park Air’s NOVA system will link a fourth surface movement radar (SMR) into the network to assure universal coverage.
The installation combines video mosaic tracking of aircraft and vehicles from all four radars and interface information on aircraft movements on arrival and departure. Signals from a second SMR will provide similar services at Orly.
Aeroports de Paris, which extended the contract, plans to improve the NOVA 9000 by adding Mode S multilateration for aircraft tracking, as well as the ability to predict runway and taxiway conflicts. Park Air is a subsidiary of Northrop Grumman. Visit www.northgrum.com.
Goodrich Corp. has agreed to acquire TRW’s Aeronautical Systems businesses for $1.5 billion in cash. The deal is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2002, subject to the regulatory approval. Aeronautical Systems, formerly Lucas Aerospace, is active in areas, such as flight controls, cargo systems, engine controls, power and utility systems and missile actuation. More than 50 percent of the unit’s product sales are in Europe, with manufacturing and service operations in the UK, France, Germany, Canada, the United States and Asia/Pacific. Visit www.goodrich.com.
Rockwell Collins has signed an agreement to acquire Airshow, known for its cabin electronics systems, including networking and "moving map" displays for business and commercial aircraft, and environmental controls, passenger information and entertainment offerings for business aviation. The purchase price is $160 million. Visit www.rockwellcollins.com.
CMC Electronics agreed to acquire Flight Visions, a U.S. company that designs and manufactures military aviation systems and products, including head-up displays (HUDs), mission display processors and control panels for fighter, fighter trainer and rotary-wing aircraft. Flight Visions also produces head-down displays and mission software. Visit www.cmcelectronics.ca and www.flightvisions.com.