The Boeing Co. in Chicago has selected Smiths Aerospace of Grand Rapids, Mich., to supply remote interface units (RIU) for the U.S. Navy’s V-22 tiltrotor aircraft. The $6 million contract for engineering units could translate to $30 million in sales over the next 20 years, Smiths officials say.
The V-22 program involves several upgrades, requiring new hardware and software additions to be flexible and forgiving. Smiths RIUs enable rapid design modifications with minimal disruption and cost to the aircraft program. The RIU, located in the engine nacelle, the wing, and the avionics bay on the V-22 aircraft, provides digitized sensor data over the V-22’s MIL-STD-1553 databus.
Smiths’ RIU digitizes such signals as voltage, current, frequency, and temperature and delivers the information to aircraft systems over the aircraft’s communication network.
The standardized unit’s ability to interface with a variety of aircraft sensors and to communicate with different computing resources supports the industry’s transition to integrated-modular-avionics architectures. Additionally, the RIU is expected to meet the V-22 cost-reduction initiative by providing cost and weight savings, says a Smiths representative.
The remote interface system is to be designed and developed at Smiths facility in Cheltenham, England. Smiths officials say they anticipate delivering engineering units in December 2007, and beginning production in 2008.For more information, visit www.smiths-aerospace.com.