Boeing, US demonstrate airborne networking


In this World Wide Wrap: Boeing, US demonstrate airborne networking, ATK tests Precision Guidance Kit, Lockheed in $3m deal to continue missile study, and SAIC unveils commercial tsunami buoy.

Boeing, US demonstrate airborne networking

Boeing and the US Air Force have demonstrated for the first time how – with advanced airborne networking and information management technology – a near-space vehicle can be used as a flexible, low-cost, theatre-wide information broker that provides real-time tactical information to ground forces to enhance their effectiveness and survivability.

The concept seeks to combine the wide-area coverage and loiter time of a near-space vehicle with the sensing ability and agility of lower-altitude unmanned air systems.

The goal is to provide information over a large geographic region, beyond the reach of a single low-altitude asset, without the need for expensive space-based assets that are often reserved for higher priority missions.

ATK tests Precision Guidance Kit

Alliant Techsystems (ATK) recently conducted a successful divert flight test of its low-cost Precision Guidance Kit (PGK). The PGK round was fired from a 155mm Howitzer at the Yuma Proving Grounds, Yuma, Arizona.

The round maintained aerodynamic stability throughout its flight and demonstrated an in-flight divert capability in excess of the company`s design requirements for Increment 1, which is a 50m CEP.

The divert flight test is the first in a series of tests designed to demonstrate how ATK`s PGK solution can manoeuvre to, and defeat its intended target.

Lockheed in $3m deal to continue missile study

Lockheed Martin has received a $3 million contract from the Missile Defence Agency to continue the Air-Launched Hit-to-Kill initiative, which would enable fighter aircraft to carry and launch Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missiles to intercept hostile ballistic and cruise missiles.

“This study matures the concept of operations for launching the hit-to-kill PAC-3 Missile from tactical fighter aircraft and prepares us for the next phase, a proposed system demonstration of the capability,” said Mike Trotsky, VP of air and missile defence at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

“Lockheed Martin is focused on delivering reliable advanced technologies and systems for the US government and its allies,” said Trotsky. “When the stakes are highest, our customers rely on proven hit-to-kill technology to assure protection of troops and assets.”

SAIC unveils commercial tsunami buoy

Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) has completed testing of a buoy developed to provide early warning detection of tsunamis. The SAIC tsunami buoy (STB) was deployed on 25 October 2006, approximately 200 nautical miles west of San Diego in 3 876m of water.

The genesis of SAIC developing a tsunami warning capability began after the 26 December 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami tragedy and has continued to build and mature since that catastrophe.

With the goal of developing an end-to-end tsunami warning capability that can be integrated into international disaster warning systems, SAIC engineers determined that the cornerstone of this effort would be the development of a technically advanced, commercially available, deep-ocean sensor.