Northrop Grumman

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Northrop Grumman
« em: Janeiro 12, 2005, 12:26:17 am »
Northrop Grumman Encapsulation Technology Enables New Submarine Capability
 
 
(Source: Northrop Grumman; issued Jan. 10, 2005)
 
 
 SAN DIEGO --- Northrop Grumman Corporation has successfully demonstrated a new technology, which will allow weapons and vehicles to be released from submarines even if they were not originally designed for undersea use.  
 
During the U.S. Navy's recent Silent Hammer exercise, a simulated unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) was successfully released from a submerged submarine to the sea surface using a low-cost, disposable encapsulation system. The demonstration was conducted on board the USS Georgia off the southern coast of California.  
 
Developed by Northrop Grumman's Electronic Systems sector, the so-called Stealthy Affordable Capsule System, or SACS, is a modular encapsulation system that enables "non-marinized" UAVs and weapons to be launched from a submerged submarine. Without such technology, weapons and vehicles must be specifically designed to withstand underwater conditions.  
 
"We are very pleased with the demonstration's results," said Navy Capt. (SEL) David Duryea, Silent Hammer program manager, Naval Sea Systems Command. "New technology demonstrated during the experiment will allow the U.S. Navy's submarine force to explore the feasibility of deploying an expanded set of weapons and UAVs, while significantly reducing the cost of developing ones specific for submarine use."  
 
During the tests, Northrop Grumman successfully completed two commanded releases of the SACS from the submarine's missile tube and demonstrated the required capsule ascent and broach dynamics to launch a UAV from the surface. Another key achievement was that the vehicles' environments were maintained during release and travel to the surface.  
 
"This is a major milestone in the SACS program," said Randy Yates, Northrop Grumman's Silent Hammer program manager. "SACS offers long-term storage capability, variable release depth, as well as the ability to encapsulate off-the-shelf small and large non-marinized equipment. Additionally, it provides the ability for UAVs to launch upon surface broach or to loiter before launch, increasing operational flexibility."  
 
The demonstrations were conducted as part of the Navy's Silent Hammer sea trial, which evaluated the potential improvements to warfare capabilities offered by a clandestine sea base of networked undersea, surface, air and ground forces. During the exercise, joint forces conducted intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance in coordinated strike operations against a simulated enemy force on land and in a littoral battle space.  
 
Northrop Grumman initially developed SACS with internal research and development funds. Further development of SACS is being conducted under an agreement from Naval Sea Systems Command for the Submarine Payloads and Sensors program. The company is a member of the Team 2020 Consortium that develops and demonstrates potential new technologies to maximize future submarine effectiveness.  
 
Headquartered in Baltimore, Northrop Grumman's Electronic Systems sector is a world leader in the design, development and manufacture of defense and commercial electronic systems including airborne radar, navigation systems, electronic countermeasures, precision weapons, airspace management systems, communications systems, space sensors, marine and naval systems, government systems and logistics services.  
 
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« Responder #1 em: Janeiro 18, 2005, 09:14:53 pm »
Northrop Grumman Develops Technologies to Deliver Better Real-Time Reconnaissance Information to Soldiers in Urban Battle Zones
 
 
(Source: Northrop Grumman; issued Jan. 17, 2005)
 
 
 EL SEGUNDO, Calif. --- Soldiers in urban battle zones could receive more timely and complete information about enemy forces from low-flying unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) with technologies being developed by Northrop Grumman Corporation under a U.S. Department of Defense contract.  
 
This work could lead to an autonomous system that coordinates the delivery of data from UAVs and other military reconnaissance assets and intelligence sources. For example, a soldier with a handheld computer would request information about suspected enemy positions, and the system would prioritize the requests and direct individual UAVs to obtain the information and deliver it. These technologies could someday be adapted for other military applications and missions.  
 
Currently, soldiers engaged in urban warfare have no direct access to reconnaissance and surveillance data, nor can they control the high-altitude aircraft and satellites that collect it. In addition, those platforms cannot provide information with the detail and timeliness required in a rapidly changing urban combat zone.  
 
HURT technology would allow the warfighter to directly request information critical to individual needs. Northrop Grumman begins work this month on an $11.6 million contract awarded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to lead the so-called "HURT" program. HURT stands for heterogeneous urban RSTA (reconnaissance, surveillance and target acquisition) team.  
 
"A HURT system would give the warfighter the ability to ask for reconnaissance imagery unobtainable by high-altitude or fixed sensors," said H.R. Keshavan, Northrop Grumman's HURT program manager. "Low-flying UAVs could see around or even inside buildings to provide more up-to-date information."  
 
During the program's first phase, Northrop Grumman's Integrated Systems sector will serve as prime contractor to demonstrate that "coordinated autonomy" can be achieved. For example, the HURT system must be able to simultaneously order the UAVs to conduct wide-area surveillance while dispatching an individual vehicle to a location requested by a soldier for a close-up look.  
 
Northrop Grumman also will conduct two engineering flight tests during the first phase to demonstrate further capabilities. While these flights will utilize small UAV systems, the technologies developed under HURT could eventually be used with larger unmanned systems such as Northrop Grumman's RQ-4 Global Hawk, RQ-8 Fire Scout vertical takeoff and landing tactical UAV and X-47B Joint Unmanned Combat Air Systems (J-UCAS).  
 
Key members of the HURT development team include Honeywell Laboratories, SRI International, Teknowledge Corporation and AeroVironment as well as researchers from NASA, the U.S. Army and academic institutions.  
 
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« Responder #2 em: Março 09, 2005, 12:52:56 pm »
Wing Warping Could Change Shape of Future Aircraft
 
 
(Source: US Air Force; issued March 8, 2005)
 
 
 WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio --- An experimental flexible-wing jet has embarked on a final phase of flights over Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., to demonstrate wing warping performance advantages for future aircraft.  
 
During the final phase, which began in December and is expected to be completed in April, a modified Navy F/A-18A will fly about 30 test flights from NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards. Scientists will evaluate the flight control system designed to twist the wing and control the airplane.  
 
The goal of the Active Aeroelastic Wing program is to demonstrate the design process, philosophies and concept, focused on taking advantage of the aeroelastic effects of the wing, said Dryden's project manager Larry Myers.  
 
"To control the aeroelasticity of this wing, we have designed control laws that take advantage of the different inboard and outboard leading edge flaps to control them separately, to exploit the aeroelasticity of the wing," Mr. Myers said.  
 
Since it began in 1996, the program has sparked the imagination and energy of its creators and onlookers alike. For the Air Force, the new technology represents a revolutionary approach to designing wings and is applicable to a wide variety of future air vehicle concepts under study -- from fighter aircraft to high altitude, long endurance concepts and high speed, long range vehicles, Air Force Research Laboratory officials here said.  
 
"AAW is about managing the aeroelastic shape of the wing and represents a new philosophy for designing highly efficient wings in terms of structural weight, aerodynamic efficiency and control effectiveness," said Pete Flick, Air Force program manager assigned to the laboratory’s air vehicles directorate.  
 
Mr. Flick said the benefits of the program depend on the specific application.  
 
With wing warping, the control surface deflections can be chosen to produce an aeroelastic shape that minimizes the load on the structure which results in reduced structural weight, he said. It also minimizes the drag of the aircraft, improving range, or maximizes the maneuver rates of the aircraft, enhancing maneuverability, Mr. Flick said.  
 
The research advances work by the Wright Brothers, who used a wing-warping control system on the 1903 Wright Flyer. Like the Wright Brothers, the program’s inventors recognize that today's aircraft could benefit from wing twist.  
 
In 2002, during the first phase of testing, the team flew the aircraft through 50 parameter-identification flights to collect data and refine the team's aerodynamic and structural loads models of the aircraft, officials said.  
 
"In Phase 1, our primary objective was to characterize the aeroelastic nature of the wing," Mr. Flick said. "We determined the effect of deflecting each of the four wing control surfaces (two leading edges and two trailing edges) across the flight envelope on structural loads, the degree of wing twist under those loads and vehicle maneuvering rates. With this data, we developed the (wing warping) control laws that we are now testing, which will demonstrate that aeroelastic wing twist can be effective in improving vehicle maneuverability and controlling structural loads," Mr. Flick said.  
 
NASA's test pilot Dana Purifoy is flying the final phase of flights, and has defined 18 test points that start at 15,000 feet and Mach 0.85, going out to 25,000 feet and Mach 1.3, officials said.  
 
Now about half-way through the flights, Mr. Purifoy said the aircraft is performing well.  
 
"The flying qualities of the airplane are very good," he said. "From a piloting standpoint, the airplane is very predictable. I'm able to control it very precisely throughout all the envelope expansion maneuvers that we've done. From a performance standpoint, the simulation experience that I had prior to the flight was very close to what we saw in flight and that the airplane continues to perform flawlessly as we go through the final phase."  
 
As the jet continues to prove the flexible wing concept, program officials are poised to call the program a success.  
 
"We are extremely pleased with our final phase results to date," Mr. Flick said. "For the maneuvers and flight conditions evaluated, we have demonstrated that (wing warping) technology works. We are anxious to complete the remaining flight research to prove the technology over the entire research flight envelope."  
 
Once the flight research is successfully completed, Mr. Flick said the inventors will turn toward spreading the design philosophy to the technical community.  
 
"Transitioning (wing warping) will likely be a relatively long process since it represents a design philosophy. The application to future Air Force vehicles will depend on specific design requirements of those future systems. The benefits are greatest when a vehicle design is initiated with (wing warping) in mind, and limited when applied to an existing vehicle. We look forward to presenting the results of our successful program," Mr. Flick said.  
 
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