News & Media

Alcon signs British Armed Forces Covenant at Goodwood Festival of Speed

July 8, 2019


Internationally acclaimed high-performance brake system design, development and manufacturing company, Alcon Components Ltd, signed the British Armed Forces Covenant at the Goodwood Festival of Speed on Friday 5th July 2019.

In signing this covenant, Alcon undertakes a commitment to honour the Armed Forces Covenant and support the Armed Forces communities. It provides more formal recognition of the value serving personnel, both regular and reservists, veterans and military families contribute to the business and to the country.

The Armed Forces representative at the signing, Lieutenant Colonel Chris Coton, Commanding Officer of 16 Regiment Royal Artillery said: “On behalf of the Armed Forces I am privileged to be able to sign the Armed Forces Covenant with Alcon Brakes at Goodwood’s iconic Festival of Speed. In signing today, you join over 2000 organisations in the UK who have made a similar commitment”. He added: “The Armed Forces Covenant relies on those people, communities, and British businesses to actively support it in making a difference.  So, the commitments you have made today formally enshrine what we know you have already done for many years and are doing every day – to support the employment of service leavers and reservists in your workforce, their spouses and families, the wounded, injured and sick. I thank you whole-heartedly for these commitments.”

Signing the Armed Forces Covenant has been a natural extension of the ‘Mission Automotive’ initiative, of which Alcon is a founding member. Mission Automotive helps companies to access and retain ex-forces talent and delivers sustainable and relevant employment opportunities for service leavers, veterans and their spouses. Mission Automotive is delivered by Mission Motorsport, the Forces’ Motorsport Charity in partnership with the Royal Foundation of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, and the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, with the support of the Ministry of Defence.

James Cameron, CEO of Mission Motorsport said: “Alcon are an accomplished and innovative company whose products have international impact in motorsport, in automotive and in other areas where their name is less well known – including military applications.  They have for many years been staunch supporters of Service causes, looking to make a difference through their work to help those whose lives have been impacted by military service.  A leader in their industry, their support of the wider Mission Automotive initiative, encouraging others to follow in their footsteps forms powerful advocacy and is to be celebrated.”

Alistair Fergusson, Group Managing Director at Alcon said: “We’re honoured to have been invited to sign the Armed Forces Covenant today and also, to announce our involvement in Mission Automotive. We’re committed to supporting the Armed Forces communities in any way we can. We recognise the considerable talent on offer as people leave the Armed Forces and the contribution they can make to a business environment such as ours, post-service”. He added: “Aside from our core motorsport business, Alcon has been solving braking problems in the defence and security sectors for over 10 years. We’re now the preferred supplier of bespoke performance braking systems to several major global defence vehicle manufacturers, helping to save lives across the world”.

Alcon innovation delivers bespoke braking solution to Protean Electric

June 27, 2019


Internationally acclaimed high-performance brake system design, development and manufacturing company, Alcon Components Ltd, has developed a bespoke braking solution with Protean Electric to be used in its market-leading in-wheel motor, ProteanDrive.

The challenge overcome by Alcon was to package a braking system around an advanced in-wheel motor design whilst retaining functionality for steering and suspension and maintaining a positive offset inboard of the motor. Whilst the ProteanDrive in-wheel motor supports regenerative braking, hydraulic friction brakes are also required to meet legislative requirements, and regenerative braking is also not available when the batteries are fully charged. To meet the performance and packaging requirements, Alcon effectively turned the braking system inside-out with the rotor disc mounted to the outside of the motor and the caliper mounted inside the disc. Using a cast iron caliper allowed Alcon to minimize wall thickness, pushing the disc as far outboard as possible, allowing for the largest disc possible. Amongst other innovative design tweaks, Alcon also integrated a parking brake mechanism. Working as a supplier to Protean, Alcon is able to deliver braking systems that enable future mobility solutions in low to medium volume.

Dr Chris Hilton, Chief Technical Officer (CTO) at Protean Electric, said: “Our innovative ProteanDrive in-wheel motor design required a completely different approach for braking. By teaming with Alcon we were able to source a purpose-designed system that solved a multitude of interlinked engineering challenges. Alcon has become a trusted partner, consistently delivering the flexibility, innovation and quality we require.”

Jonathan Edwards, Group Sales Director at Alcon, said: “We’re very proud of what has been achieved in delivering a bespoke braking solution to Protean Electric. It has enabled ProteanDrive in-wheel motors to be supplied to a number of customers to meet a variety of future-reaching needs”. He added: “As demonstrated on this project, if an off-the-shelf solution is not applicable then Alcon can tailor a braking system that solves all of the challenges faced in the most unconventional of vehicle system designs. As well as our established motorsport business, we’re receiving interest and achieving sales in a number of sectors, including defence, off-highway and other specialist areas where our innovative and tailored approach is solving problems.”

Arnold Defense to exhibit at the Paris Airshow for the first time with the State of Missouri

June 13, 2019


Arnold Defense, the St Louis based manufacturer of 2.75-inch rocket launchers, will be exhibiting for the first time at the Paris Airshow on the State of Missouri stand (Hall 3 #C-148). The 53rd International Paris Air Show will take place from 17 to 23 June 2019 at the Exhibition Center of Le Bourget, a few kilometers North of Paris.

Arnold Defense will be showcasing the ultra-lightweight LWL-12 rocket launcher weighing in at just over 60 pounds (27 kg) empty.  The LWL-12 is a new 12-round 2.75-inch (70 mm) rocket launcher that is designed to save weight but also deliver more firepower. The LWL 12 launcher offers a lighter weight option to the M261 which is a 19-round 2.75-inch (70 mm) launcher primarily used on attack helicopters such as the Apache. The participation with the State of Missouri is a first for Arnold Defense.

Arnold Defense is the world’s largest supplier of rocket launchers for military aircraft, vessels and vehicles; they have manufactured more than 1.2 million 2.75-inch (70mm) rocket launchers since 1961 for the U.S. Armed Forces and a number of NATO customers.  They design and manufacture rocket launchers that can be customized for any size, weight, capacity or form factor for platforms in the air, on the ground or at sea.

The State of Missouri offers many assets for companies and has recently been recognized as one of the fastest growing States in the union for technical job opportunities. It can offer a business climate that encourages growth to a highly skilled workforce and offers exceptional transportation and infrastructure. Missouri offers a variety of unique business advantages. It is considered to be first in offering corporate facilities and has won 3 awards for corporate investment. As part of an ongoing program to promote the companies based in the State, the Paris Airshow is one of many international exhibitions the State have been present at this year. All of this has helped make the State of Missouri one of the top performing states for export.

Jim Hager, President and CEO of Arnold Defense said “2019 has been a great year for Arnold Defense. Promoting our unique range of launchers at the prestigious Paris Airshow in collaboration with the State of Missouri, our home, will provide an excellent opportunity to showcase our continued innovation and dedication to providing only the best weapons systems to today’s modern warfighters”.

Meet the Arnold Defense team on stand # C-148 where you can see the LWL-12 and where Arnold Defense staff will be on hand to explain their systems to visitors and specific briefings and interviews can be facilitated.

Arnold Defense FLETCHER rocket launcher on display at SOFIC 2019 with Navistar Defense

May 21, 2019


Arnold Defense, the St Louis based manufacturer of 2.75-inch rocket launchers, will be at this year’s SOFIC exhibition taking place 20-23 May 2019 in Tampa, Florida. At the show, Arnold’s ground-based, laser guided rocket system, FLETCHER, can be seen on the Navistar Defense booth (No. 1248) mounted on their SOTV-B vehicle.

The FLETCHER system, first unveiled in 2017 at DSEi in London, has since undergone highly successful test-firing and with a first customer order now secured, Arnold has commenced initial low-rate production.  With FLETCHER, Arnold Defense has extended the utility of their proven, highly capable rocket launcher from aviation platforms into the land environment.  Using advanced rocket-guidance technology to meet the modern demands of land-based, mounted and dismounted asymmetric warfare, FLETCHER has been optimized for use by both special and conventional forces to provide surface-to-surface precision effect.

The wider concepts now being explored further expand FLETCHER’s utility into the arena of Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV), naval and littoral platforms.  The ability to mount FLETCHER on UGV will offer ground forces the capability to remotely support base or mobile defensive operations; giving considerably wider scope for the tactical siting of remotely operated, laser guided weapon systems, whilst significantly minimising exposure and risk to ground-based troops. Further to that, mounting FLETCHER on naval/littoral platforms will gift maritime troops a precision weapon system with a range of up to 5km that can be deployed and operated at a tactical level never previously available.

Jim Hager, President and CEO of Arnold Defense said “Since launching FLETCHER, Arnold Defense has exhibited the system widely on the international market, where it has garnered significant interest world-wide, especially from special operations units.  Our rocket launchers are already internationally well-established on airborne platforms, so transitioning into the land and marine environments with FLETCHER is a natural progression”. He added: “We recently announced the receipt of our first customer order for FLETCHER and we’re talking to a significant number of other users who we’re expecting to also place orders in the coming months. SOFIC is an ideal event to meet yet more potential buyers”.

See Arnold Defense’s FLETCHER on the Navistar booth No. 1248.

Spectra Group to exhibit at the SOFIC exhibition in Tampa Florida

May 20, 2019


Spectra Group (UK) Ltd will once again be exhibiting at this year’s SOFIC exhibition to be held from May 20 to 23 at the Tampa Convention centre in Florida. As a world leader and provider of high-grade information security and communication capabilities, Spectra have now secured over 3500 orders for the SlingShot systems across 4 continents.  The system is used by over 20 different organisations, in mostly NATO countries.  Globally, SlingShot is rapidly becoming the system of choice for tactical radio users needing increased range, Communications on the Move, flexibility and interoperability.  Taking part at this important showcase of Special Forces equipment further strengthens the group’s footprint in the North American market and beyond.

Spectra Group were recently announced as a winner of the highly prestigious Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Innovation Category for SlingShot and are proud to be part of the DIT DSO UK Pavilion which will also host 11 other companies from the UK. The pavilion’s booth number is 1122, Spectra can be found at pod number 9.

Designed to meet demanding Special Forces requirements, Spectra’s SlingShot system is a unique, low size, weight and power (SWaP) system that enables existing UHF and VHF tactical radios to extend their reach into the realm of Beyond Line of Sight (BLOS) Communications on the Move (COTM).  By utilising Inmarsat’s commercial L-band Tactical Satellite service (L-TAC), SlingShot allows a tactical net to be created over 1000s of kilometers to deliver a comprehensive range of tactical and operational network capabilities.

In Oct 2018, following contract successes in North America, Spectra Group (UK) Ltd established new offices in Fairfax County with Spectra Group (US) Inc.  Spectra Group’s permanent presence in the USA enables closer support for existing partners in North America, as well as dedicated product and service support directly to the end-user.  SlingShot was selected to participate in the US Army Expeditionary Warrior Experiments (AEWE 2019) by the US DoD.

Simon Davies, CEO at Spectra Group (UK) Ltd said: “We’re receiving significant amounts of interest in our products and services across North America and also from around the globe so our attendance at SOFIC 2019 is another fantastic opportunity to meet customers old and new in the SF arena. SOFIC will also give us the opportunity to discuss with our customer base the advantages of our systems. Our team will be on hand and will be more than happy to discuss your requirements so please do make contact by visiting the DIT DSO UK Pavilion”.