Complex Cable Harness Reverse Engineering and Production Process Development and Validation

NCMS Project #: 140863

Problem: Deteriorating and aging cables that need replacing are a growing concern, but simply amassing and storing varieties of cables – which might not even fulfill the specific requirements – does not solve the problem.  Instead, reverse engineering specific cables provides a faster, better solution to building just what is needed for a specific project.  

The Mine Resistant, Ambush Protected (MRAP) Product Manager is conducting a RESET and standardization of their vehicle fleet.  Many items provided to the Army during initial MRAP fielding included commercial items delivered without a detailed technical data package.  As items such as cables, harnesses, and other interconnect technologies become damaged, obtaining replacement parts through normal Defense Logistics Agency channels become hampered by the lack of a complete Technical Data Package (TDP).   

Benefit: Developing and implementing this technology on an as-needed basis will achieve improved performance, reliability and future availability of the products that no longer even have design documents.  Cables can be purchased in amounts needed and eliminate storage of extras.

Solution/Approach: To overcome obstacles, Unified Business Technologies will develop processes and tools to reverse engineer electrical cable harnesses, validate stable production of complex cabling harnesses leveraging automation to the fullest extent, and develop a cable harness TDP format that is extensible to the organic and commercial industrial base.  

Impact on Warfighter:

  • Expanded supplier base
  • Increased readiness rates of MRAP fleet
  • Reduction in costs due to more efficient maintenance pipeline
  • Elimination of part storage

DOD Participation:

  • U.S. Army – TARDEC Engineering and Industrial Base Team

Industry Participation:

  • Unified Business Technologies, Inc.
  • NCMS

Benefit Area(s):

  • Repair turn-around time
  • Obsolescence management and continued maintenance capability
  • Reliability improvement

Focus Area:

  • Reliability improvement