Features & Analysis

Air Force brings 1950s-vintage B-52 bomber into the network-centric 21st century

September 28, 2015

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio, 28 Sept. 2015. U.S. Air Force avionics experts are preparing to upgrade 28 Boeing B-52 eight-engine strategic jet bombers to enable the venerable aircraft to log-in to the network-centric battlefield.

Unmanned interference: UAS ground aircraft used to fight wildfires

Unmanned interference: UAS ground aircraft used to fight wildfires

September 9, 2015

HOWARD'S TOWER BLOG. Washington State is on fire, quite literally. Fires have ravaged more than 600,000 acres in the Pacific Northwest – including Oregon, Idaho, Montana, and most severely, Washington. Thankfully, Washington State is a hub of aerospace activity.

Sikorsky moves forward with aircraft automation and optionally piloted helicopter technologies

September 7, 2015

ARLINGTON, Va., 7 Sept. 2015. Avionics designers at Sikorsky Aircraft Corp. in Stratford, Conn., are moving forward with a U.S. defense research program to develop and insert new aircraft automation into existing planes and helicopters to enable operation with reduced onboard crew.

Reducing cost of Defensive Code – the Ada 2012 approach

Reducing Cost of Defensive Code – The Ada 2012 Approach

September 4, 2015

By Quentin Ochem and Martyn Pike, AdaCore

We’ve heard that a million times already, and are getting ready to hear it a million times again: software development is more and more important in industrial processes, and software reliability is becoming more and more of a key concern. The cost of software failure is not restricted to any specific market or limited to purely financial penalty with serious impact also eroding reputation and brand names. Developing reliable software involves many things, from qualified personnel to development tools, programming guidelines, requirements definition and quality assurance. The ultimate goal is either to reduce the probability of software error, or reduce the impact of said software errors.

Companies move forward with effort to repackage Joint STARS radar for smaller aircraft

August 31, 2015

HANSCOM AIR FORCE BASE, Mass., 31 Aug. 2015. Three U.S. defense prime contractors are moving forward with a cost-cutting program to redesign the sophisticated ground-monitoring radar system of the U.S. Air Force Joint Surveillance and Attack Radar System (Joint STARS) for a business jet or other relatively small aircraft.

Wearable technology drives aerospace efficiency and productivity

Wearable technology drives aerospace efficiency and productivity

August 20, 2015

Seventy-two million wearable devices will be shipped this year, up a 173 percent from 26.4 million units shipped in 2014, according to International Data Corporation (IDC) analysts in Framingham, Mass., in the company’s Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker. 

Industry to build 26,676 large passenger jetliners worth $4.23 trillion through 2029

August 17, 2015

NEWTOWN, Conn., 17 Aug. 2015. Global production of large airline commercial aircraft will total 26,676 worth a cumulative $4.23 trillion in the 15-year time period from 2015 through 2029, predict analysts at market researcher Forecast International in Newtown, Conn.

FL Technics: F-35 not prepared to run the show despite being officially ‘ready’

FL Technics: F-35 not prepared to run the show despite being officially ‘ready’

August 14, 2015

By FL Technics staff
After being developed for more than 14 years, costing more than $400 billion to make, and being 7 years too late, the Lockheed Martin F-35 fighter jet has finally been officially approved ‘ready for combat’ by the U.S. Marine Corps.

Manufacturing Day Builds Futures for Many

Manufacturing Day builds futures for many, industry

August 5, 2015

In October, thousands of manufacturers, colleges, and trade schools across the country will celebrate Manufacturing Day by opening their doors and inviting young people to experience modern manufacturing. The annual national event, executed at the local level, is designed to dispel the prevalent misconceptions about our industry and also address the serious skilled labor gap that now exists.

A case for airports: management confronts challenges

A case for airports: management confronts challenges

July 24, 2015

Kroll Bond Rating Agency (KBRA) has reviewed the current state of play of ratings for U.S. publicly owned airports, which we believe to be an underrated sector. This sector has experienced no defaults, and airport management, which KBRA believes is underemphasized by others, has performed a critical role in confronting the challenges this sector has faced over a prolonged period.

Digital aircraft, 3D printing

Why digital is flying high in aerospace and defense

July 23, 2015

Throughout the aerospace and defense industry, executives are capitalizing on a wide range of digital business and technology opportunities. Their aim is to become across-the-board, digitally enabled extended enterprises.

Army considers multispectral and radar sensor fusion for helicopter pilots

July 20, 2015

FORT BELVOIR, Va., 20 July 2015. U.S. Army electro-optics experts are reaching out to industry to find companies able to develop multi-spectral sensor fusion with a distributed aperture system (distributed aperture system) to help helicopter pilots fly fog, dust, smoke, darkness, and other degraded visual environment (DVE) conditions.

How can high tech generate more service revenues?

How can high tech generate more service revenues?

July 16, 2015

By Christian Kelly
Many high tech companies, such as aerospace and software manufacturers, are looking for ways to grow their businesses. Growth may be attainable by managing their information technology in new ways.

Air Force awards $21.1 million to General Atomics for UAS crew simulators

July 13, 2015

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB, Ohio, 13 July 2015. Flight simulation experts at General Atomics Corp. will provide the U.S. Air Force with UAS simulators crew and spare parts to help combat drone pilots practice their skills and rehearse missions.

General Dynamics upgrades Marine Corps AV-8B jump jet avionics computers

June 29, 2015

FAIRFAX, Va., 29 June 2015. Avionics software experts at General Dynamics Corp. have delivered the third software release involved in a program to upgrade the mission systems computer (MSC) systems aboard the U.S. Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier II jump jet.

Three technologies and trends to watch at Paris Air Show 2015

Three technologies and trends to watch at Paris Air Show 2015

June 9, 2015

Executives with Accenture’s aerospace and defense industry practice have identified three stories to watch during the Paris Air Show that will begin June 15th. They are: growth in digital technologies, such as wearables and 3D printing; uptick in defense market; and new competition for engineering talent.

Navy prepares Boeing to build nine new P-8A Poseidon maritime patrol aircraft

June 8, 2015

PATUXENT RIVER NAS, Md., 8 June 2015. U.S. Navy aviation authorities are giving the green light to the Boeing Co. to start building nine new P-8A Poseidon military plans under terms of a $21.3 million contract.

Air Force asking industry for enabling technologies for future hypersonic munition

June 1, 2015

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla., 1 June 2015. U.S. Air Force researchers are moving forward with a program to develop a hypersonic munition able to attack and destroy targets quickly over long distances, and pose lethal threats to many different targets in many different locations all at the same time.

Is NASA-developed distributed electric propulsion key to future ultra-quiet UAS?

May 25, 2015

ATLANTA, 25 May 2015. U.S. government researchers are experimenting with what could be the key to ultra-quiet unmanned aircraft for a wide variety of uses ranging from covert military surveillance and reconnaissance to package deliveries that don't annoy the neighbors.

Strike or surveillance: GAO says Navy needs to settle on role of future combat drone

May 18, 2015

WASHINGTON, 18 May 2015. The role of a future U.S. Navy aircraft carrier-based combat drone remains unclear, which leaves Navy leaders uncertain of the program's long-term costs, congressional investigators have found.

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