Back in February, the Office of Naval Research (ONR) test-fired
a prototype electromagnetic railgun that had been built by BAE Systems for the U.S. Navy. BAE isn’t the only game in town, however – this Tuesday, ONR announced that it is now evaluating a second
railgun prototype, made by San Diego-based General Atomics.
In an attempt to combine the vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) capabilities of a helicopter, with the speed, range and altitude capabilities of a fixed wing aircraft, tiltrotor aircraft, such as the AgustaWestland AW609
and the Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey
rely on powered rotors mounted on rotating shafts or nacelles at the end of a fixed wing. But the tiltrotor design isn’t the only option for aircraft looking to get the best of both worlds. Like Aerovironment’s SkyTote
, the Flexrotor is designed to transition from vertical to horizontal flight without any pivoting of its rotor.
Piracy on the high seas of the 21st century requires 21st century solutions. As part of the on-going effort
to curb attacks on shipping, the United States Navy will use a UAV helicopter to test a new sensor system in the waters off California during the summer of 2012. This new 3D sensor package in combination with new computer algorithms will allow the Navy to more accurately identify pirate vessels hiding among innocent shipping on the sea lanes with much greater speed and much less manpower.
Two years after BAE Systems was awarded a US$21 million contract from the Office of Naval Research (ONR) to develop an advanced Electromagnetic (EM) Railgun
for the U.S. Navy, the company has delivered the first industry-built prototype demonstrator to the Naval Surface Warfare Center (NSWC) Dahlgren. The prototype launcher is now being prepared for testing which is scheduled to take place in the coming weeks.
Currently being developed by defense contractor QinetiQ in collaboration with the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR), "Blackfish" is a robotic jet-ski designed specifically to patrol harbors and search for underwater intruders. The remote-controlled craft carries an array of sensors that allow it to "see" under water and can travel at speeds of 40 mph (64 km/h) as well as tracking at lower speeds than conventional jet-skis.
The Office of Naval Research (ONR) has unveiled a new weapons technology designed to give helicopters, such as the MH-60
and the AH-1 Cobra, the ability to combat the threat of a small boat swarm. The Low-Cost Imaging Terminal Seeker (LCITS) system equips existing unguided Hydra-70, 2.75-inch rockets with a low-cost guidance capability that allows pilots to essentially "fire-and-forget," thereby allowing them to engage multiple, fast attack seaborne targets in a shorter period.
Solid-state laser weapons are a step closer to operational capability with the U.S. Office of Naval Research (ONR
) reporting that it has successfully disabled a small target boat during testing off the Californian coast. Stemming from the Defense Department's Joint High Power Solid State Laser (JHPSSL
) program, the Northrop Grumman
developed Maritime Laser Demonstrator (MLD) was installed on the deck of the Navy's test ship the USS Paul Foster for the demonstration, making it the first time such a system has been integrated with a ship's radar and navigation system and the first time a high-energy laser has been fired at sea from a moving platform.
As the technology to support wearable electronics advances, researchers are investigating new ways of making our clothing more "intelligent" – from smart shirts for theater ushers
to the development of clothing that can respond to the wearer’s emotive state
. So would it surprise you to learn that your humble underpants could one day save your life? A new study has shown that printed sensors on the elastic band of your underpants could monitor biomarkers in your sweat and tears, make autonomous diagnoses and even administer life-saving drugs.
With its ability to handle any rope thrown at it with ease, the Powered Rope Ascender would’ve been the perfect device for those torturous rope climbing activities in gym class. Although they’ve been around since 2004, the Office of Naval Research (ONR) threw down the gauntlet to Boston-based Atlas Devices to create an Ascender for naval use that is lighter, smaller, more functional, and includes a removable, rechargeable battery. The device the company came up with is currently on display at Fleet Week New York.
It is estimated there are approximately five nonillion (that’s 5x10 to the power of 30) bacteria on Earth, and although they generally get a bad rap, there are actually many beneficial bacteria that are vital to life on our planet. As we’ve seen previously, scientists are now looking to harness bacteria to produce electricity through microbial fuel cells
. These microbial fuel cells (MFCs) convert chemical energy to electrical energy to offer a clean, efficient and reliable alternative to batteries and other environmentally harmful fuels. Recognizing their potential the Office of Naval Research (ONR) has developed an MFC that could revolutionize naval energy use by converting decomposed marine organisms into electricity.