Schumer, Clinton: Key Senate Panel Backs $15.15 Million For Defense Projects To Benefit The Greater Rochester/Finger Lakes Region

Funding is part of FY 2006 Department of Defense Appropriations Approved by the Senate Appropriations CommitteeSchumer, Clinton: Defense Projects are Vitally Important for the New York State Economy and National Security

US Senators Charles E. Schumer and Hillary Rodham Clinton today announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved over $15.1 million in the FY06 Defense Department Appropriations bill for projects to benefit the Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes regions.

Projects to be funded under the bill include, $1.65 million for Oblique Angle Hyperspectral Image Fusion and Analysis for Change Detection research at Virtual Scopics, $1.5 million to Integrated NanoTechnologies for BioWarfare Testing, $4 million to RITs Defense Systems Modernization and Sustainment Initiative, $2 million to GM for Next Generation NonTactial Vehicle Propulsion, $2 million for Photon Gears Agile Laser Eye Protection project and $4 million to the National Center for Infotonics.

This is great news for the Finger Lakes," said Schumer. "Additional funds will not only boost the area economy, but also put the Finger Lakes and New York State at the forefront of defense technology. As the men and women of our military bravely serve our country all over the world, the funding for these Finger Lakes defense projects will vastly improve national security technology and will give our armed forces an even greater edge."

The Greater Rochester and Finger Lakes Regions have already proven to the world its leadership in cuttingedge defense research and technology, Senator Clinton said. This new funding will help protect our troops, both at home and abroad, and is an important investment in our local companies and the communities they support.

Photon Gear will receive $2 million in federal funds for Agile Laser Eye Protection research. Hostile use of lasers against U.S. military assets to inflict injury, damage targeting sensors, and missiondenial through dazzling of personnel / sensors are growing threats. The eyesight of aircrew and electrooptical sensors are of particular concern due to their susceptibility to damage. Currently available laser eye protection targets known, fixed wavelength laser threats. While a fieldable, dayonly Agile form of laser eye protection is nearing completion, there is an urgent need for an integrated frequency agile form of lasereye protection that simultaneously protects during both day and night operations. An intensified frequency agile device would ultimately provide cost savings to the military by eliminating the need for different protection to cover all the potential wavelengths suitable for day and night time use. Funding will go towards the development of an intensified frequency agile device that would eliminate the need for different protection to cover all the potential wavelengths suitable for day and night time use.

Virtual Scopics will receive $1.65 million in federal funds for Oblique Angle Hyperspectral Image Fusion and Analysis for Change Detection research. Current hyperspectral targeting systems must fly directly over targets and are therefore vulnerable to shootdown. They are also vulnerable to deception using twodimensional decoys. These funds will support the development of systems that will permit targeting at long range thus reducing risk to targeting system from shootdown. These systems will also develop novel image registration capabilities in order to perform change detection and threedimensional modeling.

$1.5 million is provided in the bill for Integrated Nanotechnology of Henrietta for its BioWarfare Testing program. This funding would support the development of a Special Operations Field Biological Agent Identification System, a lightweight, portable, highly reliable system for detection and identification of specific biological agents in support of Special Operations Command, would locate, identify and render safe weapons of mass destruction.

The Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) will receive $4 million in federal funds for the Defense Systems Modernization and Sustainment Initiative. The objective of this research program is to improve the modernization, readiness and sustainment of defense systems by developing processes and tools to track the status and future health of defense systems, detect, diagnose and repair material aging failures, and provide decision support systems for use in determining when and how to upgrade these systems. The Department of Defense, while developing new systems that will enable a leapahead or transformation in military capability, must simultaneously maintain and improve the capabilities of existing systems. The number and complexity of legacy systems, as well as the staggering replacement costs, demand that attention and resources continue to be effectively allocated to current systems. This research program provides DOD with a comprehensive approach to address these issues based on lifecycle engineering principles. Over the past several years, these programs have already yielded significant cost savings for the manufacture and upgrade of several platforms and systems, as well as significantly extending the life of existing systems.

$2 million in federal funds will go to General Motors for the Next Generation NonTactical Vehicle Propulsion initiative. Funding will support the design, development and demonstration of next generation nontactical vehicle propulsion technology to enhance mission performance capability, increase fuel economy and reduce exhaust emissions of U.S. military nontactical vehicles at U.S. military installations. Following on development begun last year, the initiative proposes to demonstrate two commerciallybased nontactical SUVstyle vehicles with a single front wheel drive utilizing the latest designs in the fuel cell power unit. The General Motors light truck evaluated in this demonstration will utilize fuel cells designed and built in Honeoye Falls, NY.

$4 million in federal funds will be awarded to the National Center for Infotonics. Photonics and microsystems will be the key components in many future technologies and weapons systems of the military. Funding will support research into photonics and microsystems applications for defense applications, Measurement and Control Systems, Information and Communications Systems and Power Technologies. Technologies developed at the National Center for Infotonics will also have chembio detection and health monitoring applications. The Senate Appropriations Committee included $440 billion in the bill which now heads to the floor for a full vote before the Senate. A vote is expected in the coming weeks, and after final passage a Conference Committee will reconcile the differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill before Congress gives final approval to the legislation and sends it to the President to become law.

Previous Article Next Article