1/20/2003 - VISTA Controls, a Curtiss Wright company and a leading manufacturer of mission critical systems for military and severe environment applications, announced the award of three development contracts totaling over $2M. The contracts cover the design and development of initial production units of the 105mm cannon Autoloader Controller, Replenisher Controller and Turret System Electronic Unit (TSEU) for the advanced Mobile Gun System (MGS) from General Dynamics Land Systems, Sterling Heights, Mich.
In November 2000, a six year, $4 billion contract was awarded to equip the U.S. Army's Brigade Combat Teams with over 2,000 armored wheeled vehicles through a series of orders starting in 2001. These new Armored Vehicle, known as Stryker, are the centerpiece of the U.S. Army's effort to transform itself into a more agile and deployable force. The Stryker Mobile Gun System variant consists of a 105mm cannon mounted in a low-profile turret integrated into the LAV-III chassis. Combined, the three systems from VISTA Controls will provide fully automated loading and ammunition replenishing of the 105mm cannon to achieve sustained high fire rates needed in tomorrow's battlefield.
The Autoloader Controller works in concert with the TSEU to control loading and unloading of the MGS main gun. The autoloader also works with the Replenisher Controller to transfer the main gun munitions from the replenisher to the ammunition carousel. VISTA Controls’ initial contract is for the development of an electronic I/O controller sub-system and enclosures comprised of a combination of existing VISTA Controls’ COTS and custom products.
The Replenisher Controller and the Autoloader Controller units consist of a low profile "clamshell” enclosure/chassis, power supply, power input filters and contains a single, intelligent I/O control module. This intelligent I/O module is a key element to the VISTA Controls’ designs and is used in each of these three programs.
Based on the industry standard, extended temperature, conduction-cooled 6U VMEbus module utilizing a 166MHz Pentium RISC microprocessor, this unit performs the autoloader algorithms and control laws through various closed-loop analog and digital I/O control elements and executes BIT (Built-in-Test). The mezzanine-based I/O elements include multiple channels of A/D and D/A, RS-232/422 serial and a mix of low- and high-current 5V/28V outputs.
The TSEU is housed in a 1/2 ATR short chassis that contains the intelligent I/O module and additional standard, IEEE 1101.2-compliant VMEbus I/O boards. The program plans to equip more than 200 Stryker Mobile Gun Systems over a five-year period.
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