Defense

March 29, 2013

Navy designs mechanized rear-door assist for Mine Resistant Vehicles

Alan Canfield and Dan Broadstreet
Panama City, Fla.

The U.S. Marine Corps’ Mine Resistant Ambush Protection Buffalo vehicles were designed to protect Marines from Improvised Explosive Devices, and the Navy is improving MRAPs this March by upgrading them with a new Rear-Door Assist mechanism.

Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division Buffalo Systems Deputy Project Engineer Steven Tate Carow said the Buffalo MRAP trucks currently do not have a power system to assist opening its rear door.

“Currently, the vehicle’s rear door requires a manual effort to open, and it weighs approximately 500 pounds. It is designed so one person can open it on flat ground. However, should there be an emergency situation like a rollover, if the vehicle has to park on uneven terrain, or even if the heat of the environment affects the door frame’s shape, the door can bind and become difficult to open,” said Carow.

The Buffalo program office provided specific requirements for the RDA system to meet. With a critical requirement to improve crew survivability, some specific requirements addressed included time-to-open, reliability and environmental protection.

NSWC PCD engineers designed the RDA solution to meet these requirements, while utilizing modified commercial-off-the-shelf hardware to reduce cost and production schedule.

The RDA system can be activated from two locations inside the vehicle and one location outside the vehicle. Multiple internal locations are provided to ensure the crew can open the door in the event of a roll-over. The external switch can be activated by first responders in the event the crew is incapacitated.

Carow said that the COTS cylinders for the RDA required only a minimal modification.

Another benefit to the team’s modified COTS solution Carow pointed out is the system is self powered.

“The system has its own battery, which is charged from the truck’s alternator, so even if the truck’s batteries become disabled, the system has enough stored energy to open the door many times,” said Carow said.

Carow explained that should the RDA battery fail for some reason, there is a backup to the normal battery-powered activation.

“If all else fails, we have a manual way to crank out the pump’s hydraulic cylinder. A Marine can pull out a handle, which fits into a slot in the integrated hydraulic cylinder, and he or she can then simply use this to jack the door open,” Carow said.

The Marine Corps Systems Command Assistant Program Manager for the Cat III Buffalo MRAP, Albert Shaw, said the collaboration with NSWC PCD was a win-win situation because the partnership is producing effective solutions that in many cases can be shared by several Department of Defense entities.

“This partnering for solutions is exemplary of the DOD acting as good stewards of taxpayer’s dollars,” said Shaw. “It’s American ingenuity at its best.”




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Navy photograph

Triton has first cross-country flight from Palmdale

Northrop Grumman photograph The MQ-4C Triton Unmanned Aircraft System takes off from Northrop Grummanís Palmdale, Calif., facility Sept. 17 for its first cross-country flight to Naval Air Station Patuxent, River, Md. PALMDALE,...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

AFRL commander describes Air Force’s technology vision

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Maj. Gen. Thomas Masiello takes a question from an audience member after discussing Air Force Research Laboratory breakthrough technologies during the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air ...
 

 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Timothy Young

F-35 on time to deliver global security, Air Force official said

Air Force photograph by SrA. Timothy Young An F-35A Lightning II, assigned to 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron, takes flight July 18, 2014, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Work leading up the completion of the multinational F-3...
 
 
Navy photograph

Navy’s Triton unmanned aircraft completes first cross-country flight

Navy photograph The Navy’s unmanned MQ-4C Triton prepares to land at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Sept. 18 after completing an approximately 11-hour flight from Northrop Grumman’s California facility.   The M...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Christopher Ruano

F-16 collision-avoidance system could save lives

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Christopher Ruano The Air Force Research Laboratory Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System will automatically take over an aircraft’s flight controls if a crash is imminent. The technolo...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>