Additive Manufacturing Processes for Design, Maintenance and Sustainment – Phase II

NCMS Project #: 141018

Problem: Part obsolescence can have a major impact on the maintenance and sustainment of aging and legacy equipment in many industries.  Additive manufacturing (AM) along with other advanced manufacturing techniques, has been identified as a game-changer for the DoD supply chain, primarily due the ability to recreate obsolete components, as well as improve design quality and efficiency.  However, the impact that could be realized through the widespread adoption of AM, both commercially and for purposes of the DoD, is impeded by the slow adoption and approval of additively manufactured parts.

Benefit: Showcasing a redesign of an existing system using AM processes will demonstrate increased quality, performance, and durability, as well as decreased costs due to improved designs and efficiency.

Solution/Approach: In Phase I concept development and analysis work was performed to determine viable mobility and design options for the Ground Vehicle Robotics PackBot (GVR-BOT).  All parts able to be additively manufactured have been identified and redesigned without traditional manufacturing limitations.  A materials analysis of alternatives was performed to determine ideal material candidates.  Sample parts have been printed and form, fit, and function testing is underway.  Phase II of this project will allow for the demonstration of additional mobility options, increasing the ability of the GVR-BOT to navigate various terrains, overcome obstacles, and be more reliable given additional mission utilizing design for AM principles.

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Reduce costs, weight, energy, and fottprints
  • Increase performance, durability, and environmental impact
  • Improve warfighter readiness

DOD Participation:

  • U.S. Army Ground Vehicle Systems Center (GVSC)

Industry Participation:

  • Pratt & Miller Engineering
  • NCMS

Benefit Area(s):

  • Cost savings
  • Repair turn-around time
  • Positive environmental impact
  • Improved readiness
  • Durability
  • Lightweighting

Focus Area:

  • Additive/advanced manufacturing