LIFT, the Detroit-based, Department of Defense-supported national manufacturing innovation institute, is conducting a re-engineering analysis for the U.S. Army of select critical parts, assemblies, or subassemblies that are no longer in production.
The contract was issued by the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Ground Vehicle Systems Center (CCDC GVSC), located at the Detroit Arsenal in Warren.
The pieces of equipment being studied are in the Army’s Diminishing Manufacturing Sources and Material Shortages (DMSMS) category. The selected components have an impending loss of manufacturer or a loss of suppliers for subcomponents, raw materials, and/or software.
DMSMS issues arise due to the long service life of many military components. This longevity may result in the original equipment manufacturer ceasing production of the component or serviceable sub-components, leaving the military without a source of additional parts or critical inventory.
LIFT will lead a team over the next three months to study some of the DMSMS components to determine which ones are candidates for future remanufacturing, reverse or re-engineering utilizing alternate design, 3-D printing, new materials, new advanced manufacturing, or joining methods in order to improve operational availability.
“Our mission at LIFT is to connect materials, processes, and systems to move innovations into industry and into the hands of the warfighter more quickly,” says Nigel Francis, CEO and executive director at LIFT. “By working directly with the Army on DMSMS, we will be able to modernize those potentially obsolete, but still critical, pieces of equipment.”
By potentially re-engineering equipment using modern materials and manufacturing processes, LIFT hopes to improve mission capability, lifecycle costs, fuel economy, equipment availability and readiness, and program timing.
For more information about LIFT and its work, visit here.