The contract with MBDA, which is owned jointly by BAE Systems, EADS and Finmeccanica, is linked to the development of an attitude control system for a range of future European missiles. Surface Transformations will characterise material design properties of carbon-ceramics in missile components, including testing at very high temperatures. It will then examine different low-cost manufacturing methods to develop test component demonstrators.
The work will be supported jointly by the UK and French Ministries of Defence as part of the Innovation and Technology Partnership (ITP) on Materials and Components for Missiles.
Kevin Johnson, chief executive of Surface Transforms, said: ‘Earlier work with MBDA over the past two years has shown that carbon-ceramic is now a strategic material which gives significant performance advantages over carbon-carbon, and huge weight savings over advanced metal alloys. We can deliver distinct cost benefits with improved performance using our proprietary technology.’