ESG is presenting its "flying experimental vehicle", the MAT, in the BWB pavilion at the ILA 2006.
(Berlin, 15 May 2006) -- A flying experimental vehicle that allows systems that are already in development to be tested under operational conditions – this is the dream of many development engineers that has now become reality. At the start of the year, ESG Elektroniksystem- und Logistik-GmbH completed its mission equipment carrier (MAT) after more than two years of de-velopment. Visitors at the ILA 2006 can view the MAT at the pavilion of the German Fed-eral Authority for Military Technology and Procurement (BWB).
The helicopter is used to try out mission avionics. The German Bundeswehr and industry can use the MAT to test how equipment components such as aircraft guidance systems, sensor systems, mapping modules, integrated helmet systems or the man-machine inter-face behave when used in flight. The MAT is based on a fully re-designed UH-1D. Sen-sors weighing up to 140 kilogrammes can be attached to two equipment racks on the nose. The key advantage is that because the test equipment has been clearly separated from the actual basic helicopter, the individual test components do not need to be ap-proved for use in flight. The MAT "flying laboratory" can therefore already be used to con-duct tests while the systems are being developed.
As early as 1999, the BWB approached ESG to conduct the first studies for the follow-up system to the so-called "equipment test carrier", which was used between 1991 and 1998. As a specialist in complex electronics systems, ESG developed the entire avionics of the MAT, as well as the measuring equipment.
The MAT is owned by the armaments technology service department no. 61 in Manching. The utilisation of the MAT is coordinated by ESG by order of the BWB. Until June 2006, test flights will still be conducted for the basic helicopter. Then, the MAT will be available to public sector and industrial customers.
A helicopter cell with completely equipped avionics is on show in the BWB pavilion in Hall 3. The cell is open to visiting experts so that it is possible to view the workplaces of engi-neers and pilots as well as the range of test equipment and the equipment rack.