Meggitt Popup Helicopter Target
This scissor lift raises & lowers a model helicopter 40 feet
in 10 second for military target training.
This project was completed for Meggitt Defence Systems Canada in the fall of 2007. It is used for military target practice and was sold to the British Army. The target is hidden out on a range and it is programmed to raise and lower to various heights, at various intervals. The soldiers duties are to find the target with their instrumentation and shoot the fiberglass target off with live missiles! I am trying to get a video as I have heard it is quite spectacular!
The scissor lift can raise 40 feet in about 10 seconds. The fiberglass target can pan back and forth, has a rotating rotor and tail-blade and apparently blows smoke for added effect. It is also designed to emit a radar pattern that simulates an enemy helicopter.
This device was originally developed jointly by Qsine and Boeing in 1987-88. The target, scissor structure and electrical/electronic controls were designed by Boeing's team, primarily John Funk. Qsine, led by my dad Mick, detailed the drawings for the scissor and was responsible for the hydraulic power system. The trailer and lift were fabricated and welded by Raytel Equipment, led by Dave Marshall (Ernie Bush was also a instrumental in this unit).
The first unit was used as a demonstrator and for a bit of training but for most of it's life, it sat tucked away on the base at Suffield or in Medicine Hat. The target division of Boeing was sold multiple times over the years and has operated under names such as Bristol Aerospace (Rolls Royce), Schreiner Canada and now Meggitt Defence Systems Canada. Over the years we ran into John Funk on various projects and while the helicopter target never seemed to go anywhere, it never went away either.
We re-quoted the system several times over the nearly two decades that passed and interestingly enough it came back to life in 2007. This time Qsine fabricated and welded the trailer and lift. We also modernized the hydraulic power and control systems. The target, electronic controls and system integration were done by Meggitt. Interestingly enough John Funk was still on the project, consulting to Meggitt. I will write more about this project as obviously any endeavor with 20 years in the making creates an interesting story. Because the history is so long, I need to gather more facts to make the presentation more meaningful. For now I hope you just enjoy the pictures! (click on the sidebar to the left) All photo's are courtesy of Meggitt Defence Systems Canada.