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Air Traffic Control Towers on the HMS Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers

Thursday 18th December 2014

This talk was given by Mike McCarthy, managing director of TEX ATC Ltd, with support from Jonathan Hazelton, senior designer of TEX ATC Ltd. TEX ATC Ltd, established in 1996 is located at Great Blakenham just outside of Ipswich, TEX ATC produces Air Traffic Control Towers for civilian and military airfields. For the first part of the talk Mike gave a company profile and then an overview of some of the projects that they had done over the years, showing examples of the control towers, some of the manufacturing involved and the assembly at site. Having established the history and capability of the company, Mike then described how TEX ATC Ltd became involved with the Queen Elizabeth Aircraft Carrier project and showed a promotional type video describing the aircraft carrier and it some key facts about it. The main body of the talk was dedicated to the control tower project for the aircraft carriers, this will be the first aircraft carrier in the world to have a dedicated control tower on board. Mike described some of the challenges involved with the project and gave an overview of the resolutions to these challenges. The final part of the talk was given over to one particular challenge, the glazing for the control tower, there was nothing already on the market suitable for the task of glazing the aircraft carrier control tower. Mike described how TEX ATC Ltd developed new glass packages to glaze the control tower. Mike brought a small cutaway example to demonstrate the special features of the glazing unit, which will now be adapted for future challenging glazing applications.

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