General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, Inc. (GA-ASI) has announced that it has concluded performance testing of the arresting hook Hold Down Damper (HDD) for its proposed MQ-25 unmanned aerial refueling aircraft for the U.S. Navy. GA-ASI worked in collaboration with a team from GKN Aerospace’s Fokker business unit in Helmond, Netherlands. Fokker is slated to supply the arresting hook for the GA-ASI bid.
The test simulated dynamic conditions providing performance characteristics of the HDD, such as damping, spring rate and pressure control functionality. The test results validate modeling tools that provide quick reaction capability for completing the design and manufacturing during the Engineering and Manufacturing Development (EMD) contract.
“The tests successfully validated the dynamic simulation model for our HDD for MQ-25,” said David R. Alexander, president, Aircraft Systems, GA-ASI. “The validation of this model gives us confidence ahead of production and eventual deployment. This is part of our ongoing effort to reduce risk and accelerate capability for the Navy.”
The model verified key requirements for HDD performance testing with positive results for initial bounce, upswing and rebound, and bolter at nominal, cold, and hot operational temperatures. The preliminary design also validated construction and manufacturing methods for production use. Validation of damper modeling and construction methods in this test mitigates technical risks and met the goal of reducing the development schedule and cost of arresting hook during the MQ-25 program’s pending EMD phase.