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The latest British military fast-landing craft demonstrator has been developed and built by Qinetiq using HBM’s EDAQ data acquisition system as part of the testing and analysis regime.

The Partial Air Cushion Supported Catamaran (Pacscat) Innovative Solution Demonstrator Craft (ISDC) vessel is intended for use in a variety of military roles and may be suitable for commercial applications.

The Pacscat ISDC is based on a hovercraft design with twin hulls.

Air is blown in between the two catamaran hulls to give lift, which reduces drag, increases speed and enables greater beaching capabilities.

HBM’s equipment was used as part of an onboard instrumentation system to monitor operational performance in real time.

‘We had used HBM’s equipment in the past on a trimaran project that worked extremely well and we felt that HBM’s equipment would be able to withstand the harsh operational conditions that the craft would encounter,’ said Ewan Browell, Qinetiq trials manager.

To meet the military specifications, the craft faced a large number of design constraints since a high-speed and high-payload capacity were needed to ensure a maximum military capability in conjunction with low-draught and wash characteristics to avoid detection by any enemy.

In addition, the craft has to be capable of docking in the welldock of supporting Royal Navy ships, such as HMS Albion.

Browell used HBM’s Glyphworks for the initial analysis.

‘The interface is a visual piece of software and that makes it very easy and instinctive to work with,’ he said.

Once the initial analysis was complete, Browell was able to easily export the results into Excel, which could then be distributed for additional comments.

‘This is a really effective way of working, as I can get the initial analysis done quickly while the rest of the team can work on the results in software that is familiar to them,’ he added.

The aluminium Pacscat, which is classified by Lloyd’s Register, has an overall length of 29.7m and a beam of 7.7m.

Its operational draft is 1.2m with a range of 250 nautical miles at 25 knots.

The craft is designed to carry a variety of military loads for differing operational requirements.

These can vary from five Viking all-terrain vehicles or two to four 4×4 Man trucks, to a single Hippo beach armoured recovery vehicle or a single Challenger 2 main battle tank.

The craft is propelled by two MJP 750 waterjets, each driven by an MTU 400016vM90 engine.

Two Yanmar 6LYA engines provide power to the two Witt duplex fans that lift the vessel when in action.

The hull was tested for effectiveness against the UK Ministry of Defence Fast Landing Craft operational requirements.

Instrumentation has been fitted throughout the craft to determine performance and to help optimise future vessel design.

HBM’s EDAQ data acquisition unit is stowed in the starboard store below the wheelhouse and accessed in the crew room on the port side, where the user can monitor real-time information during trials via the graphical user interface.

The EDAQ onboard instrumentation system records 49 strain gauges, two hull pressure transducers, three tri-axial accelerometers and two shaft torque transducers.

HBM UK Ltd

Our extensive range covers everything from strain gages via measuring transducers to analog and digital amplifiers. Since our amplifiers can be connected to a PC, measured values can be further processed and then meaningfully displayed with the aid of operator-friendly analysis software specifically designed for measurement technology.

Our extensive range covers everything from strain gages via measuring transducers to analog and digital amplifiers. Since our amplifiers can be connected to a PC, measured values can be further processed and then meaningfully displayed with the aid of operator-friendly analysis software specifically designed for measurement technology. Innovative new products in the field of transducer development, signal conditioning and software are witness to our competence and up-to-date product know-how.

In addition to these standard products, HBM also provides customized solutions for sensor technology and electronics as well as complete systems. Our products and solutions are used in all sectors of industry. Our subsidiary companies and over 60 branch offices and agencies worldwide are responsible for providing expert support for measurement technology solutions on site.

The “complete measuring chain from one supplier” approach has many advantages:
The complete measuring chain comes from HBM. This means that all components in a system are adapted to work with one another.
Just one point of contact for everything you need. This saves you both time and money.
Our long experience means we understand your needs. Practical solutions come naturally to us.

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