Metamaterial Technologies signs MoU with Airbus to defend against laser cockpit strikes

June 23, 2017
The Airbus subsidiary Satair and Metamaterial Technologies MoU will bring laser protection to civil aviation.

Airbus wholly owned subsidiary Satair Group (Copenhagen, Denmark) and Metamaterial Technologies (MTI; Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada) and its optical filters division Lamda Guard (Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will lead to an exclusive multi-million dollar global distribution agreement to bring MTI's laser protection product metaAIR to the civil aviation market.

RELATED ARTICLE: MetaAIR metamaterial film protects pilots from cockpit laser strikes

metaAIR is nanofabricated as a flexible metamaterial optical filter which can be applied to any transparent surface--such as the inner surface of an aircraft's cockpit windscreen--to control unwanted light sources while not interfering with visibility. The filter deflects harmful laser beams aimed at aircraft windscreens even at high power levels and from wide angles preventing the beam from reaching the inside of the aircraft cockpit. In addition to laser protection at night metaAIR may also feature new types of optical protections such as Ultraviolet ray protection for daytime operation at cruising altitudes, answering a long-established concern for many flight crews.

Laser strikes on commercial aircraft have risen over the years and laser pointers are increasing in power and decreasing in price. Lasers can distract and even harm pilots during critical phases of flight and can cause temporary visual impairment. Over 2000 laser incidents were recorded in the USA in the first four months alone of 2017 according to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). In 2015 there were over 10,000 laser incidents reported to the FAA, the UK Civil Aviation Authority and Transport Canada.

Satair Group's involvement follows in the footsteps of two previous agreements signed between Airbus and MTI’s Lamda Guard division over the past three years. In 2014 MTI entered Airbus Corporate Innovation's Start-Up 2 Partner program which aims at building mutually beneficial partnerships with disruptive innovators and start-up companies. While setting the ground for future business arrangements, with the support of the Airbus Aircraft Security team, the program also evaluated, tested and tailored metaAIR for potential application on to its aircraft. Earlier this year, a new agreement for the validation, certification and commercialization of the product was announced.

Satair Group is now moving this relationship to commercialization and will deploy its global presence and extended distribution and parts support services to all commercial aviation market segments with a full metaAIR service offering package.

Satair Group will choose an experienced partner for Supplemental Type Certificate (STC) development to ensure metaAIR meets airworthiness and certification requirements for different aircraft types. Certification approval initially from the FAA, European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA) is expected to be granted in early 2018 with other relevant jurisdictions following later.

The metaAIR product will be developed initially for the Airbus A320 family, followed shortly afterwards by all other Airbus and also Boeing types, as well as for other commercial airliners. Satair Group also sees demand for this product coming from business and general aviation and rotary wing customers.

SOURCE: Metamaterial Technologies; http://www.metamaterial.com/news-and-events/press-releases/press-release/satair-group-and-metamaterial-technologies-inc-sign-memorandum-of-understanding-to-bring-innovative-laser-strike-protection-to-civil-aviation-market/

About the Author

Gail Overton | Senior Editor (2004-2020)

Gail has more than 30 years of engineering, marketing, product management, and editorial experience in the photonics and optical communications industry. Before joining the staff at Laser Focus World in 2004, she held many product management and product marketing roles in the fiber-optics industry, most notably at Hughes (El Segundo, CA), GTE Labs (Waltham, MA), Corning (Corning, NY), Photon Kinetics (Beaverton, OR), and Newport Corporation (Irvine, CA). During her marketing career, Gail published articles in WDM Solutions and Sensors magazine and traveled internationally to conduct product and sales training. Gail received her BS degree in physics, with an emphasis in optics, from San Diego State University in San Diego, CA in May 1986.

Sponsored Recommendations

Request a free Micro 3D Printed sample part

April 11, 2024
The best way to understand the part quality we can achieve is by seeing it first-hand. Request a free 3D printed high-precision sample part.

How to Tune Servo Systems: The Basics

April 10, 2024
Learn how to tune a servo system using frequency-based tools to meet system specifications by watching our webinar!

Motion Scan and Data Collection Methods for Electro-Optic System Testing

April 10, 2024
Learn how different scanning patterns and approaches can be used in measuring an electro-optic sensor performance, by reading our whitepaper here!

How Precision Motion Systems are Shaping the Future of Semiconductor Manufacturing

March 28, 2024
This article highlights the pivotal role precision motion systems play in supporting the latest semiconductor manufacturing trends.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Laser Focus World, create an account today!