Textron Awards Top Innovations of 2006
Employee contributions led to noteworthy product, technology and business practice advancements
Providence, RI - Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) celebrated its top innovations of 2006 at the seventh annual “Chairman’s Awards for Innovation” ceremony in Newport, Rhode Island. The Chairman’s Award recognizes and rewards employees whose exemplary innovations have led to significant improvements in products and technology, or in the company’s business practices that result in tangible gains in sales, profitability, quality or competitive position.
“The extraordinary talent of our workforce reminds us that greatness starts with each of us, and I am incredibly proud of this year’s award recipients,” said Lewis B. Campbell, Textron’s chairman, president and CEO. “These individuals and teams directly contribute to our journey toward becoming the premier multi-industry company. Their efforts advance our products, technology and business processes in ways that better serve our customers and advance Textron’s success.”
This year’s Chairman’s Award winners were selected from a field of 136 nominations from Textron companies around the world. Of those, 35 nominations were chosen as finalists and a cross-business panel chose 15 winning innovations from Textron teams based in Germany, the United Kingdom and the United States. Highlights of these innovations include:
* Accurate Methods for Enhanced Survivability, an efficient and accurate analytical methodology to predict metallic and composite airframe vulnerability to a high-explosive projectile or a fuel cell impact - by a team at Bell Helicopter, Fort Worth, Texas.
* V-22 Bellows Face Seal, a new exhaust system that reduces the number of parts from 50 to just six that significantly reduces cost, weight and leakage, and has a better service life - by a team at Bell Helicopter, Amarillo, Texas.
* Lithium-Ion Main Aircraft Battery, a revolutionary phosphate-based lithium, nonflammable battery that is weight saving, offers service benefits and provides the necessary power - by a team at Cessna, Wichita, Kansas.
* Mustang Nose Landing Gear Shimmy Damper, a one-part damper that replaces a fluid-filled, 31-part assembly, making the damper more effective, maintenance free and designed to last for the life of the nose landing gear - by a team at Cessna, Wichita, Kansas.
* Smart Boost Flight Control System, a hybrid aircraft flight control system that provides improved handling qualities and safety, simplified flight control and supporting systems, as well as reduced cost, weight and development time - by a team at Cessna, Wichita, Kansas.
* Wind Tunnel Testing Technique for Measurement of Off-Body Pressure, a methodology developed to improve measurement accuracy and dramatically reduce the time and cost of gathering off-body pressure data needed for aerodynamic configuration analysis and development - by a team at Cessna, Wichita, Kansas.
* PowerWise QE 36 Volt Battery Charger, a new high-frequency inverter battery charger used for charging battery packs - by an employee at E-Z-GO, Augusta, Georgia.
* Compact Bladed Diffuser, a diffuser used for converting high-speed fluid into high-pressure fluid and transporting it into the subsequent pump stage, allowing for enhanced pump performance in a compact space - by a team at Fluid and Power, South Yorkshire, United Kingdom.
* Sidekick Plus, a test instrument that combines the functionality of three separate products into one, providing everything a technician may need to install and troubleshoot a phone line - by a team at Greenlee, Rockford, Illinois.
* Throwmaster Paragon, a test set capable of transferring digital systems (ADSL, T1, HDSL, HDSL 2 and HDSL 4) without interrupting customers’ service - by a team at Greenlee, Rockford, Illinois.
* InCommand, an industry-first system used for walking greens mowers that allows users to improve performance by engaging the traction system and changing forward speed without ever removing their hands from the ergonomically designed handle - by a team at Jacobsen, Charlotte, North Carolina.
* Continuous Improvement Transparency, this new business practice is designed to help develop the Textron Six Sigma Lean Culture by allowing effective partnering with both suppliers and customers to reduce cost and improve collaboration - by a Kautex team, Bonn, Germany.
* Next Generation Fuel Systems, an innovative tooling and in-tank fixation method of designing and manufacturing plastic fuel tank system components into the tank shell during the blow molding process - by a Kautex team, Bonn, Germany.
* ARAM RadTruck, a mobile radiation detection system built into a Chevy Suburban that provides Federal, State and local law enforcement with the ability to detect and identify concealed nuclear weapons as well as the radioactive material used to make such weapons - by a Textron Systems team, Wilmington, Massachusetts.
* Dual TRAPS (Tactical Rocket Propelled Grenade Airbag Protection System), an airbag protection system designed to defeat rocket propelled grenades by using non-lethal countermeasures to neutralize enemy threats against light military vehicles; the defeated rocket propelled grenade remains intact, with no collateral damage or injury from fragmented projectiles - by a Textron Systems team, Wilmington, Massachusetts.
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