Innovative Manufacturing Process Improvements

Period of Performance: 09/27/2005 - 09/26/2007

$750K

Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Mentis Sciences, Inc.
215 Canal Street
Manchester, NH 03101
Principal Investigator

Abstract

The projected cost for the Mentis Sciences, Inc., (MSI) prototype PAC3 radome is 1/6th of the total cost of the present system. A Pareto analysis of the current MSI process indicates that the two largest costs in radome production are the direct labor associated with fabrication and the cost of the raw materials. In Phase I MSI demonstrated that COTS paint spraying technology reduced the direct labor costs associated with fabricating a radome and improved the quality of the radome. Specifically, MSI developed an automated resin spraying system using a high-volume, low-pressure (HVLP) paint gun and a computer controlled positioning system. In Phase II, MSI proposes to utilize the automated paint spraying technology to reduce the direct labor and materials costs associated with fabricating a full-scale radome and improve the quality of the radome. This research will involve development of the hardware and software to control the process, the implementation of process control systems, and the fabrication and testing of full-scale radomes. The solution proposed within this submission is scalable, and easily implemented into current parallel efforts at MSI such as the development of a full-scale prototype Nosecone TPS and Radome for the Kinetic Energy Interceptor (KEI) platform.