11.08.18

SCHUMER, GILLIBRAND ANNOUNCE $16 MILLION FOR CUBRC LENS II FACILITY IN BUFFALO AS PART OF DEFENSE APPROPRIATIONS BILL; SENATORS SAY FUNDING WILL BE USED TO CONDUCT HYPERSONIC TESTING OF WEAPONS SYSTEMS, ALLOW UNITED STATES TO KEEP PACE WITH INTERNATIONAL COMPETITORS

CUBRC, A Buffalo-Based Independent Not-For-Profit Research Entity, Depends On DOD’s Advanced Tech Development Program For Its Large Energy National Shock Tunnel II (LENS II) Complex

Senators Say Funding Will Permit CUBRC To Execute Hypersonic Weapons Testing On The DARPA Tactical Boost Glide Program Vehicles And Hypervelocity Interceptors; CUBRC LENS Is The Only Facility In The United States With The Capabilities To Conduct Such Tests

Funding Will Support 150 CUBRC Workers In WNY And Add New High-Paying Jobs 

Schumer, Gillibrand: Funding Will Continue CUBRC’s Cutting-Edge Work & Support Western New York’s High-Tech Workforce

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer and U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand today announced that $16 million for the U.S. Department of Defense’s Advanced Technology Development program was included in the Fiscal Year 2019 Defense Appropriations bill. Schumer and Gillibrand explained that the Advanced Tech Development program is critical to the Buffalo-based CUBRC, as they depend on it for funding. CUBRC operates the unique Large Energy National Shock Tunnel (LENS) for the testing of hypersonic weapon systems for the U.S. military. Schumer and Gillibrand explained that this $16 million will fund CUBRC into 2020 and add at least 10 jobs at the company by the end of 2018. Specifically, this funding will be used to conduct hypersonic testing on the boost glide vehicles as well as on hypervelocity interceptors. The senators explained that LENS, operated by CUBRC, is the only facility in the United States that has the capability to test weapons systems at this level, and that this funding will allow the United States to keep pace with international competitors like Russia and China, which have performed successful tests of this technology in recent years.

“This is a major step forward in our quest to secure the funding needed to boost CUBRC’s world-class research and testing capabilities in Western New York. CUBRC is a critical part of both Western New York’s innovation economy and our national defense,” said Senator Schumer. “By allowing CUBRC to conduct hypersonic tests on boost glide strike vehicles as well as on interceptors, this funding will allow the United States to keep pace with foreign competitors across the world. I was proud to work on behalf of CUBRC in the Senate, and will keep fighting for this top-notch institution to protect the jobs of 155 workers at CUBRC, as well as create new high-tech jobs in Western New York.”

“CUBRC’s groundbreaking research helps keep our military’s aeronautic capabilities among the best in the world,” said Senator Gillibrand. “With this investment, CUBRC will be able to become one of the only places in the country that can conduct supersonic testing on the next generation of advanced missile technology. I was proud to fight for this funding in the Defense Appropriations bill and I will always work in the Senate to support high-tech jobs in New York.”

CUBRC was established in 1983 to find technological advancements for its customers, particularly the U.S. military through an array of research, development, testing and systems integration projects. The LENS facility consists of four shock tunnels that enable hypersonic aerodynamic flow tests, at fully-duplicated flight conditions, using full-scale vehicles, which has played a critical role in DOD’s study of hypersonic vehicles and interceptors. The LENS facility requires approximately $12 million in funding per year to support the scientists and maintain the facility, but federal funding has slipped over the past few years.

Senator Schumer and Senator Gillibrand have long fought for funding the Buffalo-based CUBRC. In 2015, Schumer and Gillibrand announced that the Omnibus spending bill included $91 million in funding for the Department of Defense’s Test and Evaluation/Science and Technology (T&E/S&T) program, an increase of roughly $9 million over 2015’s levels.  Senator Schumer also secured $16M for CUBRC’s LENS in the same T&E/S&T program last year in the FY18 Defense budget.

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