NCDMM has been collaborating with Ingersoll Machine Tools Inc.
With the first phase development reaching completion, NCDMM invited a select consortium of suppliers to take part in a competitive process to partner with NCDMM and Ingersoll Machine Tools in the beta site execution testing of the automated inspection system during AFP production.
NCDMM director of operations, Jim Fisher, said : "In assessing the responses, ATK clearly demonstrated extensive AFP experience and has a proven track record of supporting the production and development of AFP programs.
General manager of ATK's Aerospace Structures division, Joy de Lisser, added : "ATK is excited to work with NCDMM and Ingersoll Machine Tools to continue to develop leading-edge technology in fiber placement machines through automated inspection.
Defense contractors and military depots increasingly are seeking help from the NCDMM in areas such as worker training, machine tool upgrades and advice on how to increase the efficiency of their assembly lines, VanKirk said.
NCDMM engineers suggested a different way of using the cutting tools and reduced the number of tools per wing skin from 24 to 2.
As defense budgets and spending get cut, companies have to find faster and more efficient ways to produce the same amount of parts, if not more, with less funding," says Glenn Sheffler, manager of outreach at NCDMM.
A case in point is a retrofit kit that NCDMM developed for armored vehicles, to expedite the installation of new radios and other equipment on military platforms in the area of operations.
The work now under way at NCDMM reminds us that the United States cannot afford to lose its lead in advanced manufacturing.
We select the best ones for each program," said Mark Huston, director of the NCDMM.
The NCDMM is assisting the Army's Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center, at the Picatinny Arsenal, N.
Army engineering technician Bill Bakula said working with the NCDMM "brings us up to date with all the new techniques, which we will definitely be able to apply to other projects.