“We are primarily a defense subcontractor, so we make power-related electronics and magnetics that find their way into a wide assortment of defense applications,” said St. Pierre.
Those applications include providing electronics that power everything from missile-defense radars produced by Raytheon; surveillance radars made by Lockheed Martin; avionics systems in aircrafts that may alert pilots to incoming missiles and more.
“Basically, anything in weapons, ground vehicles and in aircrafts – anything that needs very high-quality power solutions that are reliable and work every time – Espey has a niche specialty in,” said St. Pierre.
One program Espey his heavily involved with is the E-2C Hawkeye aircraft (and the E-2D variant).
“Our systems are used in the E-2C Hawkeye for all kinds of applications,” said St. Pierre. “The Hawkeye is always in the air when the carrier is out at sea because it protects the whole airspace for hundreds of miles. No commander of a fleet would ever send his fleet out without that aircraft.”
The E-2 Hawkeye, a distinctive craft due to the large radar dish on its back, was first used by the U.S. Navy in 1964. The radar, built by Lockheed Martin, is powered by Espey technology, among other components. The Hawkeye program was recently renewed for another 20 years, and St. Pierre expects Espey’s continued involvement with the aircraft’s development.
“Espey is also very proud to be the only supplier of quiet transformers to the navy nuclear fleet,” said St. Pierre. “The navy submarines all carry our power transformers that power all the various systems onboard the subs.”
In the world of naval submarines – stealth is key, making Espey’s extremely quiet and reliable transformers absolutely essential to the crafts’ success.
On land, Espey is pursuing a contract with General Dynamic for their ground combat vehicles, as well as several different artillery pieces used by the military fitted with electronics that make the weapons more accurate.
“We’re a big supplier of the M777 Howitzer gun,” said St. Pierre. “That’s the biggest howitzer in the army and marine inventory, an 8-inch artillery gun. That’s all been made digital and electronic, and we power that electronic component.”
Espey powers M777 Howitzer electronics that utilize a complex GPS guidance system combined with “Smart Shells” that can pinpoint a target as far as 45 kilometers away, or approximately 27.96 miles.
“Instead of trying to adjust for the wind and the humidity and all that manually, everything has been digitized and computerized to hit the target on the very first shot,” said St. Pierre. “It’s called a Digital Fire Control System, and that’s powered by Espey.”
With the end of the fiscal year approaching June 30, Espey is reporting $30 million in sales – a record number for the company. The company also boasts a sales order backlog of, “somewhere between $48 and $49 million,” said St. Pierre. “These are pretty good indicators in an otherwise bad defense-spending economy,” he added.