Defense

May 3, 2013

AEDC supports SBIR commercialization readiness program project on pyrophoric fuel valve

Tags:
Philip Lorenz III
Arnold AFB, Tenn.

AEDC engineers ran a series of tests on a Towed Airborne Plume Simulator at the U.S. Air Force’s Arnold Engineering Development Complexís Rocket Prep Area 4.

A threat to commercial and military aircraft posed by surface-to-air and more recently, air-to-air missiles is being addressed by a collaborative effort between the Arnold Engineering Development Complex and Active Signal Technologies, Inc., on a Small Business Innovative Research project on a programmable pyrophoric fuel and valve system.

The objective of the SBIR project is to refine surface-to-air and air-to-air missile plume simulation with the new system to improve the capabilities of Towed Airborne Plume Simulators (TAPS) to ensure airborne sensors will have the ability to detect and mitigate those threats.
Plume is the missile’s exhaust.

“TAPS has been used in the past for Large Aircraft Infrared Counter-Measure (LAIRCIM) system tests [at AEDC], “said Dr. Taylor Swanson, AEDC’s space and missiles technology program manager. “We have conducted tests on the ground in our RPA4 facility where we have the high speed fan and also in flight tests out of Naval Air Station Pensacola, Fla.”

Swanson said, “We have a very good ability to simulate the threat that we want to, namely, surface-to-air missiles. However, there are other, newer surface-to-air missiles and air-to-air missiles. In order to make TAPS a better test asset with more realistic threat representation, there are certain things we would like to do to the plume, which we refer to as the missile’s signature.”

The new pyrophoric fuel valve system, if proven effective, would become an additional test capability at AEDC.

Pyrophoric fuel is comprised of fuels that ignite when exposed to oxygen.

“This is a more representative plume that simulates the infrared signature of a man-portable air defense system, a shoulder-launched surface-to-air missile weapon,” Swanson said. “The overall intensity of the TAPS-generated plume throughout the ‘missile’s trajectory,’ from launch to target acquisition, is controlled by varying the flow rate of the fuel.

“If this new pyrophoric fuel valve allows us to modulate that plume signature over a wider dynamic range – we could go brighter or we could go dimmer and we can modulate that very quickly, what we term frequency content – if this new valve works as planned, TAPS would then be an even more useful test asset.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Courtesy photograph

Upgrades ‘new normal’ for armor in uncertain budget environment

Courtesy photograph The current Paladin is severely under-powered and overweight so its speed of cross-country mobility is pretty restricted. The Paladin Integrated Management program is designed to address a number of these we...
 
 

ISR: A critical capability for 21st century warfare

The progressive adaptations and breakthroughs made in the intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance arena have changed the way wars are fought, and the way commanders think about the battlespace. “Whether we have airmen exploiting full motion video data or serving downrange in the (Central Command) area of responsibility, these individuals make up an enterprise of 30,000...
 
 

Army Operating Concept expands definition of combined arms

The Army Operating Concept, published Oct. 7, expands the idea of joint combined-arms operations to include intergovernmental and special operations capabilities, said Gen. Herbert R. McMaster Jr. The new concept includes prevention and shaping operations at the strategic level across domains that include maritime, air, space and cyberspace, he said. It’s a “shift in emphasis,”...
 

 

Future of AF helicopter fleets discussed at conference

Air Force Global Strike Command’s Helicopter Operations Division hosted the Worldwide Helicopter Conference at Barksdale Air Force Base, La., Oct. 7-9, to discuss the current and future state of the Air Force’s helicopter fleets. The conference promoted cross talk among the Air Force’s helicopter forces, which are principally operated by Air Combat Command, Pacific Air...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Marleah Robertson

First F-35A operational weapons load crew qualified

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Marleah Robertson Airmen with the 58th Aircraft Maintenance Unit crew one, prepare to load a GBU-31 Joint Direct Attack Munition on to an F-35A Lightning II during a qualification load on Eglin Air...
 
 

Dragon ‘fires up’ for flight

The Air Force and NATO are undergoing a cooperative development effort to upgrade the avionics and cockpit displays of AWACS aircraft belonging to the 552nd Air Control Wing at Tinker Air Force Base, Okla., and the NATO E-3 Sentrys from Geilenkirchen, Germany. The Diminishing Manufacturing Sources Replacement of Avionics for Global Operations and Navigation, otherwise...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>