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US Army, Lockheed Martin Test Collaborative Robotics at Ft Benning

February 20, 2014 by · Comment
Filed under: Lockheed Martin, Syndicated Industry News 

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K-MAX Crashes on a Mission in Afghanistan

Landing support team Marines with Combat Logistics Battalion 5 rush toward a hovering Kaman K1200, "K-MAX," unmanned helicopter in Helmand province, Afghanistan, May 22. Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron 2 made history with the CLB-5 Marines by performing the first ever unmanned, mid-flight cargo hookups, also known as "hot hookups." Photo: USMC Cpl. Lisa TourtelotOne of two K-MAX unmanned helicopters supplying the U.S. Marine Corps in Afghanistan has crashed June 5th at Camp Leatherneck near Kandahar. The helicopter crashed at a landing zone when it was operating an autonomous resupply mission, as it was...

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K-MAX Crashes on a Mission in Afghanistan

Landing support team Marines with Combat Logistics Battalion 5 rush toward a hovering Kaman K1200, "K-MAX," unmanned helicopter in Helmand province, Afghanistan, May 22. Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron 2 made history with the CLB-5 Marines by performing the first ever unmanned, mid-flight cargo hookups, also known as "hot hookups." Photo: USMC Cpl. Lisa TourtelotOne of two K-MAX unmanned helicopters supplying the U.S. Marine Corps in Afghanistan has crashed June 5th at Camp Leatherneck near Kandahar. The helicopter crashed at a landing zone when it was operating an autonomous resupply mission, as it was...

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K-MAX to Stay in Afghanistan Until the 2014 Withdrawal

March 18, 2013 by · Comment
Filed under: afghanistan, Syndicated Industry News 
kmax_support_2012650The U.S. Marine Corps will keep the two K-MAX unmanned helicopters in Afghanistan 'indefinitely', at least, until the withdrawal or US troops from the country next year.

U.S. Marine Corps to Keep K-MAX Unmanned Cargo Re-supply Helicopter in Theater for Second Deployment Extension — Press Release

WEBSTER FIELD, Md., July 31, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — For the second time this year, the U.S. Marine Corps has approved the deployment extension of K-MAX Cargo UAS, the first unmanned helicopter to deliver cargo and resupply troops in a combat zone.

By supplying forward operating bases with K-MAX instead of ground convoy or manned aircraft, the Marine Corps has reduced the threat posed to personnel by improvised explosive devices by thousands of hours.

Earlier this year, the Marine Corps requested the aircraft, a joint effort by Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and Kaman Aerospace (NYSE: KAMN), stay in theater through September 30, the end of this fiscal year. Today’s announcement extends K-MAX service in Afghanistan for an additional six months and includes an option to extend its time through September 2013.

“K-MAX has proven its value as a reliable cargo resupply aircraft and an asset that saves lives,” said Vice Adm. David Architzel, commander of Naval Air Systems Command, which manages the K-MAX program for the Marine Corps. “The use of this aircraft eliminates the need for manned ground convoys, reducing the number of our warfighters exposed to improvised explosive devices.”

The K-MAX program, developed to satisfy a Joint Urgent Operational Need Statement generated by the Marine Corps in 2010, has flown 485 sorties, 525 hours and lifted more than 1.6 million pounds of cargo since it arrived in theater in November 2011. In May, the aircraft performed a historic “hot hook-up,” enabling personnel to attach cargo to the unmanned aircraft while in hover mode. That capability is now used regularly to perform retrograde missions (when cargo is carried on the return flight as well), increasing the efficiency of the K-MAX.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security and aerospace company that employs about 120,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The corporation’s net sales for 2011 were $46.5 billion.

Kaman Helicopters is a division of Kaman Aerospace Corporation, a subsidiary of Kaman Corporation (NYSE: KAMN). Founded in 1945 by aviation pioneer Charles H. Kaman, and headquartered in Bloomfield, Connecticut. Kaman conducts business in the aerospace and industrial distribution markets. The company produces and/or markets widely used proprietary aircraft bearings and components; complex metallic and composite aerostructures for commercial, military and general aviation fixed and rotary wing aircraft; safing and arming solutions for missile and bomb systems for the U.S. and allied militaries; subcontract helicopter work; and support for the company’s SH-2G Super Seasprite maritime helicopters and K-MAX medium-to-heavy lift helicopters. The company is also a leading distributor of industrial parts, and operates nearly 200 customer service centers and five distribution centers across North America.

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Lockheed and Kaman to Work on Unmanned Cargo Aircraft for Army

The u.S. military has invested heavily in Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV). These primarily perform reconnaissance and intelligence collection missions although they and the C.I.A. have used them for strike missions against limited target sets. As with lots of different countries across the globe the U.S. is looking at other roles for these systems with an eye to freeing up manpower or providing better force protection through limiting exposure of troops.

At the end of last year the U.S. Navy awarded Lockheed Martin (LMT) and Kaman (KAMN) a contract to develop the K-MAX cargo helicopter into a unmanned resupply system. That contract was worth about $45 million. Now the U.S. Army has followed suit.

They awarded the two companies a similar contract with a value of up to $47 million. This is to also look at making the K-MAX into an unmanned cargo helicopter with a goal of reduced workload and increased accuracy.

The K-MAX is a rather unique looking aircraft with twin intermeshed rotors that carries a decent load externally. It has been developed for use in logging and cargo operations.

The Army and Marine Corps are also looking at using unmanned ground vehicles to provide supply in combat areas. These include a range of vehicles from ones that accompany troops to carry their gear to bigger systems that would replace the current manned trucks carrying large amounts of fuel and cargo. This kind of technology has the potential to free up troops from these missions as well as provide a way to transfer cargo safely.

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Lockheed Martin Submits Proposal for Cargo UAS Services Request — Press Release

Lockheed Martin Submits Proposal for Cargo UAS Services Request

WASHINGTON, Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ — Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) and Kaman Aerospace Corporation, a subsidiary of Kaman Corporation (Nasdaq: KAMN), have formally offered the K-MAX® unmanned helicopter in response to a U.S. Naval Air Systems Command request for a cargo unmanned aircraft system.

Earlier this year, the unmanned K-MAX system successfully demonstrated its ability to resupply troops in a simulated environment similar to forward operating bases in Afghanistan. Under a contract with the Marine Corps Warfighting Laboratory, Lockheed Martin and Kaman successfully flew the unmanned K-MAX at Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, meeting or exceeding the requirements that were set.

“The aircraft offers significantly reduced operational and logistics costs compared to transporting cargo by convoy or manned helicopter,” said Dan Spoor, Lockheed Martin Aviation Systems vice president. “We’ve paired Lockheed Martin’s mission management system with the proven rugged K-MAX airframe to give Marines the lift and reliability they need in theater. More importantly, it keeps them out of harm’s way.”

During the Dugway flights, the unmanned K-MAX demonstrated its ability to hover at 12,000 feet with a 1,500-pound sling load, deliver 3,000 pounds of cargo well within the six-hour required timeframe in two 150 nm round-trip flights, fly remotely controlled, perform a precision load delivery by a ground-based operator in either day or night conditions and upload a new mission plan to the aircraft’s mission management system during flight.

The team also showcased the unmanned K-MAX helicopter’s four-hook carousel, which enables multi-load deliveries in a single flight. The aircraft flew to three pre-programmed delivery coordinates loaded up with 3,450 pounds of cargo, and released a sling load autonomously at each location. At the Marine’s request, the fourth load delivery was performed under manual control by the ground operator.

This demonstrated capability exceeds all of the performance requirements detailed in the request. Lockheed Martin has teamed with Kaman to offer a proven solution.

Kaman has also performed a cargo airdrop demonstration in partnership with the U.S. Army’s Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center this past April.

“Airdropping cargo as an option to placing a sling load on the ground can enhance an unmanned aircraft’s survivability while delivering critical supplies in combat environments,” said Terry Fogarty, Kaman Unmanned Systems general manager.

The manned version of the K-MAX has accumulated more than 255,000 flight hours in the commercial logging and firefighting industry. Recently, the aircraft moved 2.5 million pounds of boulders in just over 40 hours at 10,000 feet altitude. Kaman designed the K-MAX helicopter to deliver sling loads up to 6,000 pounds at sea level, and 4,300 pounds at 15,000 feet. Lockheed Martin’s mission management and control systems give the K-MAX helicopter unparalleled flight autonomy in remote environments and over large distances. The team has flown the K-MAX nearly 400 hours in unmanned mode since joining forces in 2007.

Headquartered in Bethesda, Md., Lockheed Martin is a global security company that employs about 133,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced technology systems, products and services. The Corporation’s 2009 sales from continuing operations were $44.0 billion.

Kaman Helicopters is a division of Kaman Aerospace Corporation, a subsidiary of Kaman Corporation (Nasdaq: KAMN). Founded in 1945 by aviation pioneer Charles H. Kaman, and headquartered in Bloomfield, Connecticut conducts business in the aerospace and industrial distribution markets. The company produces and/or markets widely used proprietary aircraft bearings and components; complex metallic and composite aerostructures for commercial, military and general aviation fixed and rotary wing aircraft; safing and arming solutions for missile and bomb systems for the U.S. and allied militaries; subcontract helicopter work; and support for the company’s SH-2G Super Seasprite maritime helicopters and K-MAX medium-to-heavy lift helicopters. The company is also a leading distributor of industrial parts, and operates more than 200 customer service centers and five distribution centers across North America.

For additional information, visit our web sites:

http://www.lockheedmartin.com/ms2

http://www.kaman.com

SOURCE Lockheed Martin

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