Optelecom-NKF Inc. of Germantown, Md., a supplier of network video equipment including Internet protocol cameras and fiber-optic systems, yesterday announced it was granted a new patent on technology that will improve aircraft reliability and safety by making possible position-sensing transducers that are impervious to electromagnetic interference. Issued US Patent 7166833 by the US Patent and Trademark Office, Optelecom-NKF has been granted rights to technology that works by using just a few optical fibers to carry data from an aircraft actuator position sensor to a shielded enclosure containing light emitter, detector and signal-processing electronics. "Today, aircraft control systems function in extremely harsh environments and are subjected to high levels of electromagnetic interference and noise," said Ron Smith, chief researcher and director of the Optelecom-NKF Electro-Optic Systems Group. "Electromagnetic interference is a primary cause of control failures in systems using position encoders for control feedback. This patented technology can be used to improve the performance, reliability, and safety of all types of aircraft, manned and unmanned."