Innovating the ‘future’ of military interiors

Article

When piloting U.S. Army helicopters, every detail is critical – no matter the mission.

And at Collins Aerospace, we’re on a mission to serve the warfighter -- providing them the technologically advanced solutions they need to complete their operation. Our interiors products for military applications build on our commitment to our armed service members and bring value to spaces that may have previously been overlooked. Some examples of technologies we provide to improve mission effectiveness and readiness include:

  • Lightweight, armored pilot/co-pilot seating
  • LED lighting technologies that are retractable to reduce drag
  • State of the art ice protection systems with proven reliability

And our contributions don’t end there. Collins supplies oxygen systems, cockpit and instrument panels, wired systems and more - all in support of the warfighter. Whether it’s providing humanitarian aid after a natural disaster or utilizing lethal force in today’s ever-shifting battlespace, we know pilots must be ready to take swift action in any situation, under extreme duress and uncertainty.

Our engineers have spent years developing the technology, institutional knowledge and manufacturing know-how to take care of these details so our nation’s best, brightest and bravest have what they need to keep their eyes on the big picture in service of the mission.

“The approach we take to our interiors military portfolio begins and ends with how we can positively impact the warfighter,” said President of Interiors, Troy Brunk. “We’ve identified their needs and are excited to be able to support them with solutions and systems that keep safety top of mind, improve alertness and optimize mission readiness and effectiveness,”

Those same solutions meet the standards laid out in the Future Vertical Lift program, one of the U.S. Army’s six modernization initiatives aimed at replacing its fleet of aging helicopters. The program is at a critical juncture with suppliers providing the solutions that will serve as foundational pieces in military missions for future generations of warfighters.

And Collins, along with the other Raytheon Technologies businesses, stand at the ready to help.

“Our diverse set of solutions has the ability to reach across the spectrum of military aircraft interiors,” said Brunk. “We’re working closely with our government and OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) partners, re-investing in research and development and fully demonstrating how we are effectively missionizing our market-leading commercial interiors for use on military platforms.”

And Brunk knows plenty about innovating effective technologies for the armed forces. He’s spent the last 28 years of his career supporting military products and systems across Collins. With the business making a strategic decision to expand its support of military interiors, it was a natural fit for him to take over as president of the Interiors business in April.

He recalls being briefed shortly after the acquisition of B/E Aerospace – the company that’s now at the core of the Collins Interiors business – and being stunned at the sheer scope of new opportunities available in the military market.

“It wasn’t the breadth of product lines offered - which was terrific - that sold me,” said Brunk, “it was the depth of our design and engineering capabilities that spoke to our potential for innovation. And our Interiors business is living that promise more and more every day as we follow a company-wide roadmap to missionize strategic products across the board.”

If it touches the interior of an aircraft, its likely Collins has an advanced solution or system that impacts and enhances that product. And with clear modernization paths and a robust network of global MRO (Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul) sites, the infrastructure for a military interiors endeavor of this scope is primed to support missions around the world.

“Our nation’s best deserve the absolute best service, support and products available. That’s our motivating force and how we approach innovation each and every day,” said Brunk. “It’s how we’re continuing to live out our mission of redefining aerospace every day.”


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