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    RIA-JMTC hosts AMC Summit, discuss additive manufacturing way forward

    RIA-JMTC hosts AMC Summit, discuss additive manufacturing way forward

    Photo By Debralee Best | ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. – Lisha Adams, executive deputy commanding general, U.S....... read more read more



    Story by Debralee Best 

    Rock Island Arsenal-Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center

    ROCK ISLAND ARSENAL, Ill. – As 3D printing solutions become more of a reality for Army readiness, leaders from throughout the Army’s Organic Industrial Base discussed how to move forward with roles and responsibilities for additive manufacturing.

    The Rock Island Arsenal - Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center (RIA-JMTC) hosted a Commanders’ Summit with leaders from 23 facilities that make up the Army Materiel Command-managed Organic Industrial Base Oct. 17 to 19 at Rock Island Arsenal, Ill.

    “I want everyone to leave here knowing we have a clear direction of where we’re going, that we can implement it as an enduring program and not do something because it’s the new buzzword and then it fades away,” said Lisha Adams, executive deputy commanding general, U.S. Army Materiel Command.

    “Additive and advanced manufacturing techniques have been around for a while and all of our OIB sites were using it without an integrated and synchronized strategy,” Adams said.

    The summit was held at RIA-JMTC because of its designation as the Center of Excellence for additive manufacturing. A Center of Excellence is a team or facility that provides leadership, best practice, research and support for a focus area.

    “Part of the Center of Excellence is really about having the operational additive for the Army. I know we can print. How do we operationalize that capability, how do we industrialize it for the organic industrial base and impact readiness? That’s what we’re really looking at,” said Col. Kenneth W. Letcher, commander, RIA-JMTC. “Then, how do we support that over the time and space of the battlefield? What should we be doing, where, by whom and to what extent is really what we’ve got to figure out.”
    As the Center of Excellence, RIA-JMTC is receiving funding for renovations and equipment to ensure production of additive manufactured parts progresses as planned.

    “Next spring, we’ll be able to print 3D sand molds for the foundry so we can better design and better make a mold to pour the metal,” said Letcher. “Also, we’re going to expand: we’ve got metal printing capabilities, so we’ll expand metal printing capability. We’re going to expand our polymer and our wax printing capability and add some hybrid capability, both in terms of different materials at one time and also hybrid in the sense of being able to do additive and conventional in the same machine.”

    These increased production processes are designed to assist in Army readiness from the Soldiers to the depots.

    “The arsenal is the Center of Excellence and it will print parts that either fill critical readiness drivers in the field or print parts for the depots,” said Adams.

    “By doing so, the arsenal will make sure there is a part on the shelf when somebody needs it,” she added, “whether it’s the depots needing a part in the overhaul or maintenance of equipment, or it’s a part for a Soldier who is repairing a system to keep it operational.”

    Not only will RIA-JMTC provide the parts, they will ensure quality parts.

    “It’s a team of team approach and Rock Island has that manufacturing expertise, they understand the processes that are required, so by keeping them as that center, they will be the technical experts in that capability,” said Adams. “That will enable the rest of the Army to trust they have a quality part to apply in a battle damage repair or to improve readiness and the depots to know they will get a part to keep their production lines flowing.”

    This is also a needed move forward to modernize the Army’s OIB's capabilities.

    “I see this as the organic industrial base moving to a new place … it’s the fourth industrial revolution. The military still has a lot of legacy equipment that requires the OIB to sustain,” said Adams. “We’ve got to be prepared for the future and if we don’t start looking at how we can change our processes now, then we’ll stay stuck on the legacy.”



    Date Taken: 10.22.2018
    Date Posted: 10.22.2018 09:51
    Story ID: 297208

    Web Views: 276
    Downloads: 1