September 29, 2006: Summit and Portage Companies to Receive Over $22 million in Federal Research and Development Funds | Congressman Tim Ryan
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September 29, 2006: Summit and Portage Companies to Receive Over $22 million in Federal Research and Development Funds

November 20, 2006
Press Release

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - Congressman Tim Ryan (D-Ohio) announced today that Congress this week approved $22.5 million in federal earmarks which Ryan had inserted into a Defense Department spending bill. The earmarks will fund high-tech research and development projects at businesses based in Summit and Portage counties.


The funds include $17.5 million for Lockheed Martin to develop a high altitude airship, $2 million for Lockheed's Millennium Gun project, $1 million for Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company to continue research on materials for the Joint Strike Fighter aircraft, and $1 million for Alpha-Micron to continue development of visors for pilots based on state-of-the art liquid crystal technology.


"These funds represent a significant achievement in our goal of advancing technology development in the 17th District," said Congressman Ryan. "I'm very proud to have been able to secure these funds, which I believe will not only result in the development of new technologies but also new jobs and new investment for our region."


The High Altitude Airship will be designed to operate autonomously in the stratosphere for long periods of time as a stable, geostationary platform suitable for communications, sensor, and weapons.  It will be manufactured at Lockheed's Airdock in Akron.


The Millennium Gun is a multi-role, inner-layer defense naval weapon system designed to defeat threats in the air, on the surface, and during coastal and river operations. Its low weight makes it suitable for mounting on a number of ship types, including Coast Guard cutters, frigates, offshore patrol boats, and the Littoral Combat Ship.


Goodyear's research on advanced materials and new materials for combat aircraft tires as well as other aircraft tires will strengthen our domestic industrial manufacturing base for military tires and ensure a second source for the current Joint Strike Fighter. Goodyear is the only U.S.-owned tire company manufacturing for the U.S. military.


Alpha-Micron's Variable Transmittance Visor, utilizing liquid crystal technology, is a fast-acting technology that enables a fighter pilot to adjust the tint of his or her helmet visor. In addition to increasing see-through without having to raise the visor, helmet-mounted displays will retain their contrast, and the information they display will not be washed out by bright light or be too dim to read.