AIS unveils new MEMS IMU technologies

05 October 2017

Atlantic Inertial Systems (AIS), a UTC Aerospace Systems company, is introducing two new micro electro-mechanical systems (MEMS)-based inertial measurement unit (IMU) products to advance the inertial navigation system (INS) and guidance capabilities delivered to missiles and guided munitions through its legacy SilMU02 IMU system.Production of Atlantic Inertial Systems' LITIS lightweight MEMS IMU is expected to begin in mid-2018 (Atlantic Inertial Systems)Production of Atlantic Inertial Systems' LITIS lightweight MEMS IMU is expected to begin in mid-2018 (Atlantic Inertial Systems)

An IMU is a self-contained system that measures linear acceleration and angular motion/rotational rate using a combination of (typically) three gyroscopes and three accelerometers. IMUs are used as components of navigation and guidance systems to track the position, velocity, and orientation of a vehicle throughout a particular mission.

AIS has pioneered the development of an IMU based on vibrating structure MEMS sensors, and was the first company to offer a MEMS IMU for military missile and munition applications. Its first-generation system equips/equipped a number of guided weapons, including the UK Royal Navy’s legacy GWS-25/GWS-26 Sea Wolf anti-ship missile.

The SilMU02 IMU is a second-generation all-digital MEMS IMU with a silicon-based gyroscope and accelerometer sensor package, and a shock tolerance of up to 20,000 g.

With a volume of 65.5 cm3 and weighing <210 gram in a typical housing, SilMU02 has found application in a wide range of precision guided munitions, and has a stated gyro bias or ‘drift’ instability as better than 2.5°/hr and accelerometer bias as better than 1 mg (milli-G).

To deliver a more comprehensive navigation capability, the SilMU02 has also been coupled with a global positioning system (GPS) receiver, using a modular Kalman Filter in a package designed for missile, munition, and projectile guidance. SilMU02 is already in full production, and has been supplied to a number of programmes from 70 mm guided rocket applications, to 155 mm guided munitions (e.g. Raytheon’s Excalibur 1b), and for undisclosed glide bomb systems.

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