Tools, Techniques and Materials for Lightweight Tracks

Period of Performance: 11/19/2008 - 02/22/2010

$120K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

GS Engineering, Inc.
47500 US Hwy 41 Array
Houghton, MI 49931
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Alternative processes, tools and techniques are required for installation and support of new lightweight segmented track systems using only two crew members. The logistical burden of the current system of using 3-4 crew members and additional heavy equipment is not feasible to support future lightweight vehicles. The new system must allow two crew members to assemble, install, disassemble, or repair segmented tracks. The proposed approach is to develop processes and a system of multi-use tools which will allow ergonomically easy movement, lifting, installation, alignment, and connection techniques of the segments and track lengths. The tools will have multiple uses to reduce the number of tools required, which will revolutionize the current manual efforts and greatly reduce the logistical burden associated with track installation. GSE has a unique background with extensive experience in track design, lightweight vehicle component design, and advanced materials development. GSE s team includes experts with specific experience in advanced lightweight track design and manufacturing, and this team is well-suited for the development of new processes and tools to install and repair segment track sections.