With the recent delivery of the U.S. Army’s 250th UH-72A Lakota Light Utility Helicopter (LUH) aircraft by EADS North America/Eurocopter, the program is just over two-thirds complete, and remains on schedule and within budget. Nevertheless, there have been some recent changes to the Lakota program due to Department of Defense budget pressures. In Fiscal Year 2014, plans had called for the Army to order 31 Lakotas, with another 10 to be ordered in Fiscal Year 2015. However, President Obama’s recent fiscal 2014 Budget Request to the U.S. Congress drastically reduces those figures. The proposed cuts in the 2014 budget submitted to Congress in April would reduce production of the Lakota in 2014-2015 by 31 fewer aircraft than the Army planned to buy and calls for 10 Lakota helicopters to be ordered in 2014 and none in 2015, which would effectively end the program.
Markus Schmitz, President and General Manager, stated “We are concerned by the recent announcement by the U.S. government and the possible impact of sequestration, which calls for early termination of the UH-72 Lakota program. Becker Avionics’ DVCS6100 digital audio system is part of the avionics package on the Lakota helicopter and in support of the program we’ve built-up U.S. production capabilities at our facility in Miramar, FL” He continued, “The build-up of the local production capability required a significant capital investment by our firm and created valuable U.S. jobs to further strengthen and expand our U.S. employee base. The proposed cuts would effectively end Lakota production by the end of 2014 and endanger a significant number of U.S. jobs at Eurocopter, as well as adversely affecting the supplier base. We understand that cuts must be made to alleviate some of the strain on the national debt, but it appears counterproductive for the Department of Defense to cancel this cost-effective, highly successful program while it is so close to successful completion.”
Brett Gardner, Director of Sales and Marketing, also added “As cited in a recent news article, the U.S. DoD acknowledged the UH72-A Lakota program as a model defense acquisition program, and as one of the most cost-effective, successful rotary wing aircraft programs in recent history, so it is surprising that the program is being phased-out too early.”
Becker Avionics is proud to be supporting the Army’s Lakota mission with its highly successful DVCS6100 product. The Army selected Becker’s technology based on the following key attributes:
•Superior system capabilities
•Product reliability, maturity, and support
•Unmatched operational flexibility
•Mission tested performance
•NVG compatibility out of the box
•Proven Man-machine interface
The 250th Army Lakota delivered will be operated by the Oklahoma National Guard in Oklahoma City. The Army is using Lakota’s in multiple configurations to fulfill a wide range of missions, including medical evacuation, search and rescue operations, homeland security, VIP transport, disaster response and relief, general aviation support, combat flight training and pilot sustainment training. The Navy uses the aircraft for flight test and training purposes at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, MD.
About the DVCS6100
The DVCS6100 design provides the Army with ability to match a wide range of operational requirements with only one system. The built-in scalability and flexibility reduces not only the cost and time requirements for constant re-engineering and certification for a tailored system solution, but also reduces the learning curve for integration, maintenance and troubleshooting time. Through software programming options, the DVCS product is both easily and quickly configurable to individual customer requirements, thus saving time and money.
The DVCS’ open system architecture technology provides for operational comfort and superior voice quality, ensuring that almost any customer requirement can be met, while providing crystal clear communication for crew and passengers.
No matter what the mission; from Military to Police, EMS and passenger transport, to surveillance or utility operations; Becker’s Digital Audio system ensures a more modern and capable aerial platform.
DVCS6100 Digital Audio System Features
The DVCS6100 has been designed for both rotary and fixed-wing applications. The product fully reflects Becker Avionics’ proven know-how of more than four decades in audio system development for the aerospace industry. Since the market introduction of the 1st DVCS generation, over 1,000 systems have been delivered, with all achieving outstanding field reliability. Becker’s continuous product improvement program ensures the DVCS6100 continues to meet our customer expectations and that the product remains technologically competitive.
Becker’s Digital Audio technology is superior to any analog system, as it offers crystal-clear voice communication quality, a proven Man-Machine-Interface (MMI), outstanding reliability, scalability and flexibility, and is software configurable. The main system components of the DVCS6100 system are the Remote Electronic Unit (REU) 6100, the Audio Control Unit (ACU) 6100, and the optional Intercom Amplifier IC3100.
The product offers up to 8 communication transmit (TX) and up to 8 receiver (RX) channels, an integrated warning tone generator for up to 8 different signals, an amplifier for 2 cockpit speakers, as well as interfaces for 2 Cockpit Voice Recorders (CVR), and a Public Address Amplifier (PA). Furthermore, the comprehensive built-in-test (BIT) feature enables line maintenance crews or avionics technicians to easily diagnose/isolate failures and replace system components quickly.
Up to 6 ACU’s (audio panels) can be operated together with one REU. Each unit can be configured with the included software to give complete adjustment range across different on-board radio systems. The system also meets the highest standards for night operation under NVG and military conditions. The ACU6100 is available with NVIS green (MIL-STD 3009 Green B) and white Backlight, and offers emergency and slaved mode operation. The DVCS6100 represents a unique mission enhancement technology that easily outperforms the competition.
Becker – the leader in certified commercial off-the-shelf Digital intercoms.
About Becker Avionics
Becker Avionics is a privately held high-tech company that develops, manufactures and distributes the latest communications, navigation, surveillance and search & rescue equipment for airborne and ground applications. Becker Avionics has a longstanding history of over 50 years in providing equipment to General and Corporate Aviation, ATC, law enforcement and military organizations around the world. In order to support international market requirements the Company has established branches around the world. Becker Avionics supports an extensive customer base, such as, but not limited to Eurocopter, EADS, Airbus, Bell Helicopter, British Aerospace, ATR, CASA, RUAG, Xi’an Aircraft Corporation, AgustaWestland, Pilatus, German Air Force, Navy and Army, German Border Patrol, German Police, Austrian Army and Police, Swiss Air Force, Dutch Police, Security Civil, Irish Air Corps, Egyptian Navy, Indonesian Navy, Portuguese Air Force, U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy and U.S. Auxiliary Civil Air Patrol, etc.
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