REVEALED: The BAE-HAL Joint ‘Advanced Hawk’




Hindustan Cables Limited is now Naini Aerospace

Now Naini will also contribute to the Indian Security. In coming days parts of Air force aircrafts will be manufactured in Naini Aerospace. Hindustan Cables Ltd. which is acquired by Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd will manufacture various aircraft parts here.

Hindustan Cables Limited was on the verge of closure and the employees had not been paid for two years. Due to workers unrest and movement which started in early September 2016, Central Government sealed the takeover of Company.

That`s when Hindustan Aeronautics Limited began the process of acquiring. On Monday, New Delhi CMD of Hindustan Cables and MD of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited which comes under the defence ministry went to complete the formalities of the acquisition. HAL named the new company Naini Aerospace Limited.

Naini Aerospace Limited will be the subsidiary of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. 125 employees of Hindustan Cables Limited will join the new company on 1st February. Hindustan Cables labour union head Rama Kant informed the staffs about the merger. The staffs are happy with the news.

In a Bid for Defense Exports, India is Giving Contracts to the Private Sector



The Indian government has signed a sizable contract with Reliance Defense and Engineering Ltd (RDEL) a company promoted by Reliance Infrastructure, in a major boost for private defense manufacturing. The company claimed that it has signed a contract with India’s Ministry of Defense for the design and construction of fourteen (14) Fast Patrol Vessels (‘FPVs’) for the Indian Coast Guard; the value of the deal is $137.68 million.

Reliance Defense and Engineering emerged as the winner through a competitive bidding process undertaken by the Defense Ministry. Almost all the private sector and public sector shipyards: L&T, Cochin Shipyard Limited, Goa Shipyard Limited, Garden Reach Shipbuilders & Engineers Ltd had participated.

“This is the first time a private sector shipyard has been awarded a contract to design and build such a class of ships for the Indian Armed Forces. RDEL will be developing the design in-house. Reliance Shipyard, which features the largest dry-dock in the country, has successfully mastered the block-construction technique through unique ‘modular construction technology’ for building large ships for both commercial usage and the Navy,” claims the first private sector company in India to obtain a license and contract to build warships.

This could prove to be a landmark decision in a bid to achieve India’s $2 billion defense export target as all the state-owned companies are burdened with domestic orders and left with little or no space for export assignments.

“The combined R&D expenditure of the government-owned companies is a mere five per cent of their turnover, in comparison of 20% for some global companies. Given such a poor focus on R&D, it is not surprising that they have designed and developed very few products. The average labor productivity of public sector defense undertakings is less than one-fifth that of that of major global defense companies. Exports, a measure of international competitiveness, account for a meager five per cent of their sales, whereas many international companies generate over 70 per cent of their revenues from international customers,” says Laxman Kumar Behera, a Delhi based expert in defense industry and military spending.

Government sources said that in order to build India’s first homemade 155mm/52-caliber towed artillery gun, it can also go to private sector’s kitty as well. The Indian Army has a requirement of more than 3000 artillery guns expected to be inducted in next decade.

Recently, the Indian government has also taken major decision to privatize government owned defense company BEML in order to boost productivity and focus on exports.

AMRC Composite Centre wins funding to help keep UK at forefront of automotive innovation




The Composite Centre of the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) with Boeing has won £360,000 in funding from Innovate UK to investigate the way composite material is developed for use in automotive components.

The AMRC Composite Centre has formed part of a UK-wide research consortium tasked with creating strong lightweight vehicle and powertrain structures to help deliver lower emissions.

Composite assemblies used in automotive manufacturing, such as side impact beams in door panels or roof panelling are created using separate carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CRFP) structural composite components.

These structures are secured by fixtures that are then ‘over moulded’ together using more composite material, this not only makes the final parts more aesthetically pleasing, but can also incorporate additional functional features and details to any completed structure.

The CRFP comes as ‘preformed blanks’ of material which are then cured to the desired shape; it is the development and production of these preformed blanks that the AMRC Composite Centre will be investigating, using state-of-the-art technologies to create a more cost effective process for manufacturing automotive composite components.

AMRC Composite Centre Partnership lead, Hannah Tew, said: “Our role within the research project is to look at how the preformed blanks can be made cheaper, faster and stronger, using less material to produce lightweight composite automotive assemblies.”

The AMRC Composite Centre will investigate the use of creating the CRFP material using 3D weaving of commingled fibres and co-weaving of carbon and thermoplastic fibres, instead of the traditional 2D weaving:

Research will also be carried out to see if the way the CRFP fibres are orientated during weaving affects the production and quality of the composite material, allowing the team to improve component geometry and lightweight the composite material more than standard composites.

Tew, added: “We hope the research will allow us to prove the technology can work for many other vehicle parts, helping the proliferation and use of composite materials in the automotive sector. This will contribute to increasing cost efficiencies and vehicles that are lighter and produce fewer emissions.”

As there are already moves in Europe to routinely use composite materials within the automotive industry, the research project is important to keep the UK on a par with the capabilities of Europe.

ISRO to launch 103 satellites at one go


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It’s not the number that matters, but preventing ‘traffic mishaps’ in space, for personnel of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) as they prepare to launch a record 103 satellites at one go by February middle.

Imagine a busy street where the trick – regardless of the number of cars, buses and motorbikes – is all about avoiding a collision. ISRO will find itself in a similar situation with the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle C-37 (PSLV C-37) mission.

‘’The number of satellites is not the big thing here. The real complexity lies in deciding with precision the actual orientation, angle and time interval of separation of the satellites. None of the satellites should collide with each other during separation in orbit,’’ K Sivan, director, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), the nodal agency for  ISRO’s launch vehicles, told Express.

The idea, in a nutshell, is to separate the satellites in stages – in different directions and at different relative velocities – to avoid a mishap in space. ‘’For the most part, it will be like any other PSLV mission. No technical changes have been made to the PSLV, for example,’’ said Sivan.

A successful mission means ISRO will set a record for launching so many satellites at one go. The space agency’s personal best is 20 satellites.

Although the launch date is yet to be declared, February 15 has been mentioned as a possible D-day.

Even in payload mass and mission duration, the PSLV C-37 mission will not be a unique one, said Sivan. The total payload mass is about 1,350 kg, which is well within the capability of the PSLV. As for duration, ISRO’s record would still stand with the September 2016 PSLV C-35 mission which put satellites in two separate orbits.

Originally, ISRO had announced an 83 satellite payload for the PSLV C-37 mission. Then the number jumped to 103.

Converting waste heat into energy – Composite material yields 10 times voltage output

Converting waste heat into energy – Composite material yields 10 times voltage output

a scanning transmission electron microscope image of a nickel-platinum composite material. At left, the image is overlaid with false-colour maps of elements in the material, including platinum (red), nickel (green) and oxygen (blue)

Engineers from The Ohio State University have used magnetism on a composite of nickel and platinum to amplify voltage output 10 times or more – not in a thin film, as they had done previously, but in a thicker piece of material that more closely resembles components for future electronic devices.

A growing area of research called solid-state thermoelectrics aims to capture waste heat, produced by electrical and mechanical devices, inside specially designed materials to generate power and increase overall energy efficiency.

“Over half of the energy we use is wasted and enters the atmosphere as heat,” explained Stephen Boona, postdoctoral researcher at Ohio State. “Solid-state thermoelectrics can help us recover some of that energy.

“These devices have no moving parts, don’t wear out, are robust and require no maintenance,” he continued. “Unfortunately, to date, they are also too expensive and not quite efficient enough to warrant widespread use. We’re working to change that.”

In 2012, the same Ohio State research group, led by Joseph Heremans, demonstrated that magnetic fields could boost a quantum mechanical effect called the spin Seebeck effect, and in turn boost the voltage output of thin films made from exotic nano-structured materials from a few microvolts to a few millivolts.

In this latest advance, the researchers have increased the output for a composite of two common metals, nickel with platinum, from a few nanovolts to tens or hundreds of nanovolts. The researchers say this smaller voltage is in a much simpler device that requires no nanofabrication and can be scaled up for industry.

Heremans, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering and the Ohio Eminent Scholar in Nanotechnology, said that, to some extent, using the same technique in thicker pieces of material required that he and his team rethink the equations that govern thermodynamics and thermoelectricity, which were developed before scientists knew about quantum mechanics. While quantum mechanics often concerns photons, Heremans’ research concerns magnons – waves and particles of magnetism.

Research in magnon-based thermodynamics was up to now always done in thin films and even the best-performing films produce very small voltages.

Previously, his team described hitting electrons with magnons to push them through thermoelectric materials. Now, it has shown that the same technique can be used in bulk pieces of composite materials to further improve waste heat recovery.

Instead of applying a thin film of platinum on top of a magnetic material as they might have done before, the researchers distributed a small amount of platinum nanoparticles randomly throughout a magnetic material – in this case, nickel. The resulting composite produced enhanced voltage output due to the spin Seebeck effect. This means that for a given amount of heat, the composite material generated more electrical power than either material could on its own. Since the entire piece of composite is electrically conducting, other electrical components can draw the voltage from it with increased efficiency compared to a film.

While the composite is not yet part of a real-world device, Prof Heremans expects the proof-of-principle established by this study will inspire further research that may lead to applications for common waste heat generators, including car and jet engines.

Composite breakthrough: nano-coating boosts electrical and thermal conductivity




A nano-coating that is claimed to enhance the thermal and electrical conductivity of composites has been developed in a project involving academia and industry.

The collaboration between Bombardier and the Universities of Surrey and Bristol demonstrates that growing carbon nanotubes at high density – via chemical vapour deposition – on the surface of carbon fibre composites allows electrical transport throughout the material.

Dr Ian Hamerton, reader in polymers and composite materials in the University of Bristol’s Advanced Composite Centre for Innovation and Science (ACCIS), said: “This will have wide-reaching benefits in the aerospace industry, from enhancing de-icing solutions to minimising the formation of fuel vapours at cruising altitudes.”

For years, the application of composites in aerospace has been hindered by inherently poor electrical and thermal conductivities.

“The aerospace industry still relies on metallic structures, in the form of a copper mesh, to provide lightning strike protection and prevent static charge accumulation on the upper surface of carbon fibre composites because of the poor electrical conductivity,” explained Dr Thomas Pozegic, research associate at ACCIS. “This adds weight and makes fabrication with carbon fibre composites difficult.”

The new research, conducted at the University of Surrey’s Advanced Technology Institute (ATI) and the ACCIS, is said to show off the potential of carbon fibre reinforced plastics to be made multifunctional, while still maintaining structural integrity. Using this technique, sensors, energy harvesting lighting and communication antennae can now be integrated directly into the structure of the composite material.

Professor Ravi Silva, director of the ATI said: “In the future, carbon nanotube modified carbon fibre composites could lead to exciting possibilities such as energy harvesting and storage structures with self-healing capabilities. We are currently working on such prototypes and have many ideas including the incorporation of current aerospace/satellite technology in automotive design.”