SCRA to help refurbish vehicles returning from war

Charleston Regional Business Journal
January 5, 2009

The Army’s automotive center has chosen the S.C. Research Authority to be a partner in the refurbishing of machines returning from battle.

The $1.6 million contract was awarded to SCRA for conceptual, program development and management and engineering expertise.

SCRA, a tax-exempt applied research and commercialization company, said it and other partners will develop and implement a technology that uses laser scanning to save time and money when U.S. combat vehicles return from war.

The program, called Scanning Technology for Accelerating Reset, will look for undocumented parts and test for combat damage a vehicle might have sustained to ensure specific standards and mission requirements are met.

Under the contract, SCRA will work under the direction of the Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center in Warren, Mich. Anniston Army Depot in Anniston, Ala., will implement the laser scanning technology.

“STAR illustrates the capabilities of SCRA and our partners to deliver assured outcomes to the U.S. Army and to our war fighters,” said Bill Mahoney, SCRA’s chief executive. “We are proud to see our ideas put into action which delivers both improved mission fitness and financial returns to our clients.”

Subcontractors who are conducting product data work for the STAR program are Northrup Grumman Information Technology and the Lockheed Martin and Day & Zimmermann company Defense Support Services LLC. Both companies are located in South Carolina.

The STAR program includes:
Laser scans of military vehicles to determine where any undocumented parts have been installed, along with measurement of any sustained battle damage or missing equipment.
Replacement of conventional coordinate measurement machine part inspections with noncontact scanning, which speeds the quality assurance process and enables precise measurements not previously achievable.
Scanning of existing parts for which no drawings exist, with the resulting data converted to computer-aided design models. These models can be quickly fabricated into the required parts. Damaged parts are scanned, and a direct metal deposition system is used to make repairs.

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