Army wants ideas from industry on new avionics for manned and unmanned helicopters

Sept. 1, 2005
U.S. Army aviation experts are asking industry for ideas on new avionics technologies for manned and unmanned helicopters.

By John Keller

FORT EUSTIS, Va. - U.S. Army aviation experts are asking industry for ideas on new avionics technologies for manned and unmanned helicopters. This request was announced on Aug. 15.

The Army is also asking industry for ideas on how companies and Army agencies could work together to develop and demonstrate new helicopter avionics concepts. The solicitation number of this request for information is W911W6-05-05-R-0005.

This request for ideas is coming from the Army Aviation Applied Technology Directorate (AATD) at Fort Eustis, which typically works with basic and applied research (6.2 and 6.3) levels of funding.

The Army is interested in technologies that will be ready for demonstration from 2006 through 2013.

Army officials primarily are interested in manned and unmanned helicopter avionics technologies involving communication, navigation, IFF (identify friend/foe), displays, mission processing, high-bandwidth data links, data buses, digital maps, air traffic management, networked systems, antennas, embedded systems, on-board wireless communications, and photonics.

Ideas on helicopter avionics displays may involve heads-up or helmet-mounted versions. Avionics that involve vehicle management systems (VMS) are not part of the Army’s request for information.

AATD experts also are considering new technologies to help develop and maintain avionics and mission equipment for helicopters.

These technologies would involve electromagnetic interference and electromagnetic compatibility suppression, new bonding techniques, new cabling methods, and new materials testing.

Army experts are asking for technologies that involve microelectromechanical systems and nanoelectromechanical systems (MEMS/NEMS) devices and other microcircuits that are not currently fielded or widely fielded in the military avionics industry but that could be used in military helicopters.

Army researchers caution that this request for information is not necessarily a commitment to move ahead with the research outlined.

Researchers are asking for industry responses no later than Sept. 30. Address responses to Commander, U.S. Army AATD, AMSRD-AMR-AA-I (Allen Walker), Bldg. 401, Lee Blvd, Fort Eustis, Va. 3604-5577.

Contact Allen Walker by phone at 757-878-2516 or by e-mail at [email protected]. A secondary contact is George Logan, whose phone number is 757-878-4526 and e-mail is [email protected].

More information is online at

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