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BAE Systems Navigation System Passes Extreme G-Force Tests

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by Staff Writers
Plymouth, UK (SPX) Sep 26, 2006
BAE Systems' ultra-miniature SiNAV02(r) inertial guidance system recently completed its first full-caliber test firing, surviving a launch shock of 20,000g - 20,000 times the force of gravity. The solid-state silicon sensors are designed for use on guided artillery shells.

The SiNAV02 units, which integrate a micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) inertial measurement unit (IMU) with a Global Positioning System receiver, were integrated into 155mm rounds specially designed for the trials by Singapore Technologies Kinetics (ST Kinetics) which has teamed with BAE Systems to conduct the trials. The units survived even the highest-force, 20,000g firings.

Both the IMU and the GPS receiver were tested post-firing and found to be fully operational; the GPS had maintained its stored data and the unit showing no signs of physical damage. Earlier this year, three SiNAV02 units were also successfully fired multiple times at between 12,100 and 22,200g at BAE Systems' Aerobutt facility in Ridsdale, Northumberland, U.K.

"With the ability of these devices to withstand such extreme forces, BAE Systems can now provide the military with the capability to fire longer-range inertial navigation and GPS-guided weapons from a gun," said Stuart Cooper, SiNAV02 program manager at the company's inertial products facility in Plymouth, U.K., where the system was developed. "Availability of accurate mid-course guidance and navigation for gun-launched weapons is a major advance in improving the effectiveness of ground forces."

SiNAV02 and its primary components, SilMU02(r) and the GPS receiver, are based on BAE Systems proprietary designs to meet the military's needs for all-weather precision-attack. The MEMS IMU measures angular rate and acceleration that, when integrated with GPS data, provides accurate guidance and navigation information for precision attack systems such as rockets and munitions.

BAE Systems has the only silicon IMU in volume production and service in the world, proven in more than 40 live firings on 10 different missile systems.

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