National Center for Manufacturing Sciences News and Views from the World of Manufacturing
Welcome to The CTMA Connector, a monthly newsletter designed to provide news and ideas about the Commercial Technologies for Maintenance Activities (CTMA) program. The CTMA program is a joint Department of Defense/National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (DoD/NCMS) effort promoting collaborative technology development between industry and the DoD maintenance and repair facilities. This newsletter highlights ongoing projects, serves as a forum for promoting new project ideas, and provides other news of interest to the program. Our goal is to stimulate your participation and solicit your input.
Feel free to submit items for the newsletter as well as any suggestions to make it more useful. More information about the program can be found at http://ctma.ncms.org/.
To subscribe or unsubscribe to the CTMA Connector, send a message to: firstname.lastname@example.org with “subscribe CTMANewsletter” or “unsubscribe CTMANewsletter” in the message body.
CTMA Annual Partners Meeting Update
The 14th CTMA Annual Partners Meeting (formerly referred to as Annual Symposium) is a combination virtual and networking event. This year’s Partners Meeting theme is “Fast Track to Collaboration” and participants will discuss methods for successfully implementing technology at maintenance facilities and to identify other technology initiatives that impact weapon system readiness.
A Deputy Commanders Panel is scheduled for Tuesday, 21 May commencing 1415. The panel session will include an in depth discussion surrounding the increasing pressures to sustain the fleet at less cost. Panel members will discuss how emerging technologies can help their operations.
Also in light of the recent DoD guidance, it is clear that the relevance and importance of innovative technology solutions has dramatically increased. Technology solutions will help enable the military Services to smartly defer maintenance without assuming undue risk and drive further efficiency into current maintenance processes to help maximize the effectiveness of greatly reduced maintenance resources.
Live keynote addresses and panel discussions will be via video-conference with rebroadcast over the internet to anyone registering for the event. Participants can tune-in to the meeting based on their interests in the agenda. Industry and local DoD personnel are invited to join us at NCMS in Ann Arbor for the Annual Partners Meeting. Project teams will be showcased during the meeting, and each team will have 30 minutes to either present their technology or conduct a demonstration for broadcast to participants throughout the sustainment community.
Announcing the winner of the 2013 $100,000 CTMA Maintenance Challenge
Industrial Human Augmentation System Prototype Re-Design for Affordability (Lockheed Martin, NAVSEA 04X)
The problem this technology addresses is the high Total Ownership Cost (TOC) of DoD assets including U.S. Navy Carriers, Surface Ships and Submarines. Labor represents the majority of costs associated with the construction, maintenance, repair and disposal of DoD assets. Technological advances are needed to reduce TOC’s through increased productivity, improved quality, and a reduction in the costs associated with worker injuries. Exoskeleton-based human augmentation can remove most of the human strain while using hand-tools during construction, maintenance, repair and disposal of DoD assets. This will increase productivity and quality while decreasing injury rates, thus significantly reducing TOC’s. Although applicable through the entire life cycle of DoD assets, this technology is initially directed at depot level maintenance and repair tasks, specifically, grinding, blasting, needle-gunning, sawzalls, using heat induction units, hydro-lancing, and painting.
A two-week iHAS productivity evaluation was successfully conducted at PSNS & IMF. Five test subjects used a low heat induction tool to remove SHT tiles and SHT tile residue from various locations on a submarine hull. The workers performed this task both non-augmented and with an iHAS.
The evaluation produced compelling results:
1. Testing indicated a high potential for significant team productivity improvements, as the iHAS enabled a two-worker team to equal the production of a three-worker team that does not utilize an iHAS.
2. Quantitative data suggests that iHAS improves overall individual productivity by demonstrating the potential to improve operational productivity by reducing the heat induction crew size of three to two, a 50% improvement. Currently operators rotate positions to avoid fatigue, but operators using the iHAS will not experience fatigue, will have greater endurance, and avoid the need to rotate positions as often.
3. Qualitative data suggests iHAS improves worker ergonomics and significantly reduces worker fatigue.
4. The iHAS performed effectively in a wide array of work environments (unstable footing, scaffolding, loose impediments, rain, wind, cold, etc.).
Using the MANTIS benefitted PSNS & IMF by reducing the required crew size from three to two, equating to a cost savings of $104K per year for one single operation, using a Heat Induction Tool to remove tiles. These savings will increase exponentially as iHAS units are deployed throughout the DoD industrial base and maintenance, repair and disposal depots and shipyards, with the units being utilized on many different tasks across the DoD Services.
Interested in participation, contact Dana Ellis, email@example.com, 360-782-1370.
Thanks as well to all the other submissions, some of which will also be funded:
Digital Pen and Paper for Capturing Maintenance Data (ADAPx, FRCSW)
The user would employ a pen that records the data being written on paper that has been printed on site with a microscopic pattern of dots. The pen can transmit the data via Bluetooth or via docking at a depot computer. Because each piece of paper is unique, and the pen knows precisely which piece of paper it is writing on, the user can fill out any form at any time, alternating among them as s/he pleases.
Automated Process & Inspection Guide (AP&IG) for B1 Bomber at Tinker, Dyess, & Ellsworth Air Force Bases (Aspire Solutions)
The team would utilize AP&IG (Automated Process & Inspection Guide) to automate the existing manual, paper based maintenance and inspection operations. AP&IG standardizes these processes by providing detailed guided work flows using actual pictures that walk the mechanic/inspector thru a set of procedures.
Product Life Cycle Management for Aircraft Sustainment and Support (FRCE, Dassault)
The team proposes a solution to enable users to access engineering, maintenance and logistics information that is required for maintenance in a common environment. This will provide users with the capability to bridge gaps between the fleet and the FRC, FRC to FRC, and internal to the FRC. The solution will provide the ability to capture and utilize complex data in a native state generated by a range of technologies and configuration management tools.
The Application of Laser Metal Deposition as a Repair and Remanufacturing Process for the Wear Surfaces of High Value Components (Focus Hope Industries)
All military vehicles (land, sea, and air) have rotating metal components (e.g. wheel spindles, engine cam shafts, or pump shafts) which exhibit wear, damage, and/or corrosion during their regular service life. When the damage reaches the extent that the relative vehicle systems’ performance is or will be affected these worn parts are typically replaced with new parts and the old part is relegated to the scrap pile. While these old parts cannot be reused in their worn condition, a significant level of useful value is lost when they are simply recycled for their metal.
The Project Team proposes to develop a pilot production remanufacturing process for a Government-selected high value component to significantly reduce its life cycle costs.
2D/3D Data Model Collaboration between FRC Southwest, FRC East and FRC Southeast (Navy FRC’s, Siemens, SIS)
The project team proposes a solution that will enable users at FRC Southeast and FRC East to access engineering and manufacturing information from the FRC Southwest via web interface. Each location will be able to utilize configuration controlled data generated by a range of technologies for acquiring the “as-is” condition for aircraft that enter the NAVAIR depot environment. The solution will provide a collaborative environment for maintenance and repair activities between the Depots. Data from the new environment will be formatted and managed to allow a team of users to access, visualize, collaborate, manipulate, and conference using engineering information, (2D and 3D) in a secure and traceable way.
Automated Rotor Blade Stripping System (ARBSS) Service and Expansion (GLC, FRCE)
The project team proposes to: 1) bring ARBSS fully on line in FY 2013 for immediate cost reductions, 2) to establish a track record of reliable performance, and 3) to extend the qualification of the process to V22 and H-1 substrate materials.
Model Based Definition for Aircraft Launch, Recovery, and Support Equipment (NAWCAD Lakehurst)
The project team proposes to formulate a MBD Technical Data Package (TDP) which will consist of engineering drawing formats that are compatible with the existing 3D PDF (PRC) solution, and embedding STEP files into these PDF files. A comparison of the PRO/E models with the new PRC and STEP model files will be conducted to ensure that these models define an identical geometry.
Reducing Unscheduled Maintenance and No Fault Found Costs with the Intermittent Fault Detection & Isolation System (IFDIS) (Universal Synaptics)
The Intermittent Fault Detection & Isolation System (IFDIS) is a tester that was specifically designed to fill the conventional ONE circuit at a time testing void. The IFDIS tests the LRU / WRA chassis wiring and identifies the precise location of each defect through the use of a hardware neural network that monitors ALL of the circuits in the Unit Under Test (UUT) individually, simultaneously and continuously (no scanning, sampling, averaging or multiplexing), detecting any intermittent event even as short at 50 nanosecond (0.00000005 seconds), that’s one twentieth of a millionth of a second. This quantum leap in test technology enables the chassis wiring problems to be easily repaired, as the root cause of the fault that drove the equipment item in for repair is accurately identified and isolated. Repairing the defect is usually trivial; finding the defect has always been, and continues to be, the problem.
Please direct any interest in any of these efforts to Chuck Ryan, firstname.lastname@example.org, 734-995-4905.
Joint Technology Exchange Group Launches New Website
The Joint Technology Exchange Group (JTEG) was created to better leverage technology improvements in depot maintenance through the collaboration of the Services, Joint Staff, OSD, and industry. The JTEG is composed of representatives from the military Services, the Defense Logistics Agency, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Maintenance Policy and Programs – (ODASD-MPP). The JTEG is a strong advocate for new technology or new equipment with cross-service potential to increase efficiency and/or effectiveness.
On 4 April, NCMS and ODASD(MPP) launched the new JTEG website. The website provides a forum for the exchange of information on new technology, processes, and equipment developments involving depot maintenance. Industry and Department of Defense (DoD) personnel can use the site to share technology ideas and needs. You can review new and exciting technology projects posted on the website, or you can submit your own projects to post to the website. Go take a look at http://jteg.ncms.org.
“Well, sometimes training doesn’t pan out……but the results (of this training) are paying off.” Commanding Officer, FRC E. This is what the user is saying about the simulation-based Experience Accelerator piloted in a CTMA sponsored project between Fleet Readiness Center East and NCMS member Pendaran.
So far, FRC-E has sent over 350 personnel, military and civilian, through the simulation. Results include a dramatic 75% reduction in OSHA recordable injuries and a 65% reduction in Lost Work Days, with similar results in quality improvement, on schedule delivery and more coming in daily.
Continuous improvement, lean, 6-Sigma, TOC, etc. have been around about for years. Most organizations have trained in at least some of them. The problem has been that few achieved lasting improvements, no matter how much training was done. Now the CTMA/Pendaran Experience Accelerator delivers an alternative, bringing all the learning together to produce sustainable results.
We learn by experience. We learn by practicing, not just listening to lectures or watching PowerPoint presentations. Yet the real world generally offers little opportunity for risk-free practice at improving operations performance. This project is producing results.
“Aside from flight school and survival school, I have not seen anything like this…. flawless.” Test Pilot, Major – US Marine Corps