Constituent Services
Congressman Higgins Attends Grand Opening of LENS XX the Newest Addition to the CUBRC Supersonic and Hypersonic Test Facilities
October 23, 2008

During the past 10 years, with significant Congressional support, CUBRC has designed, constructed and tested two of the world’s most powerful wind tunnel test facilities to support America’s defense and space research. CUBRC has in fact constructed three ground test facilities, LENS (Large Energy National Shock Tunnel) I, II and XX, each of which is the most powerful facility in its range; together they provide America with an unparalleled testing capability from Mach 3 to Mach 30. In these tunnels we can conduct ground testing with full-scale vehicles at conditions which duplicate those obtained in flight (i.e., conduct a flight test on the ground).  Clearly, this can result in cost savings because a typical flight test can cost $30 million while an equivalent set of measurements can be obtained in CUBRC’s tunnel for $300,000, and unlike other facilities, the ground test vehicle is not damaged and can be re-used for testing again the next day. The LENS tunnels have played major roles for NASA in return the space shuttle to flight, and the development of high-speed interceptors and air-breathing supersonic and hypersonic vehicles for the Department of Defense.

On October 23, 2008, we are delighted to have Representative Brian Higgins preside over the opening ceremony for the new LENS XX tunnel; Congressman Higgins has in the past two years, along with Sen. Hillary Clinton and Sen. Charles Schumer previously, obtained the major funding for this facility. Without their leadership in this area, America would not have the ground test facilities it needs which are essential to resolving the key design problems associated with the production of new defense systems and America’s space initiatives. The construction and operation of these state-of-the-art facilities has placed CUBRC and WNY at the forefront of experimental research and testing in supersonic and hypersonic flows, and has attracted world-class scientists and significant funding to the Western New York area. 

“Western New York’s changing economy is increasingly emerging from our industrial roots as a hub for exciting research and information technology and CUBRC is one of the successful companies contributing to this rising,” said Congressman Higgins.  “CUBRC’s cutting edge technology is protecting our country’s dedicated military personnel and providing quality jobs in Western New York.  I am pleased to be a part of the official unveiling of CUBRC’s latest innovation.” 

CUBRC Inc., an independent not-for-profit corporation headquartered in Buffalo NY, executes Research, Development, Testing and Systems Integration initiatives in Hypersonics, Medical Biotechnology, Chemical and Biological Defense, and Information Exploitation.

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