The Executive Control Board of the National Shipbuilding Research Program (NSRP) has awarded funding for eight new research projects as part of the Navy/Industry co-funded portfolio focusing on cost reduction in the U.S. shipbuilding and ship repair industry. These new projects, valued at approximately $16m including industry cost share, were among those proposed in response to an October 2009 Research Announcement.
Fueled by Navy funding that is matched by cost share provided by industry teams, the NSRP collaboration periodically funds major R&D projects through which new technologies and innovative processes can be developed and implemented as a means of reducing shipbuilding and repair costs for the Navy and the industry at large.
A brief description of each of the new projects, with a list of participants and funding information, follows:
Weld Shrinkage and Distortion Allowance for Neat Construction Project Lead
Team Members: Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding-Gulf Coast; Todd Pacific Shipyards; Marinette Marine; ShipConstructor USA; Gatekey Engineering; Edison Welding Institute; Hepinstall Consulting Group; Victoria Dlugokecki
Objective: To map weld shrinkage and resulting distortion for both uniform and non-uniform steel assemblies, and apply the mapping data via regression analysis. Deliverables will include a computer model of weld shrinkage data for uniform and non-uniform panels.
Program Funding: $1.9M Industry Cost Share: $1.9M
Common Parts Catalog Enhancements Project Lead:
GD Electric Boat
Objective: To analyze, identify and monitor the implementation of distinct enhancements to the current Common Parts Catalog -- a real-time, searchable inter-shipyard parts catalog currently used in production in several shipyards. This project will focus on enhancements in: Network, Software and Application Changes; Model Inclusion and Exchange; and Functional Enhancements.
Program Funding: $2.0M Industry Cost Share: $2.0M
Streamlining Shipyard Rigging Analysis
Project Lead: GD NASSCO
Objective: To develop a tool for simplified finite element analysis (FEA) of rigging and lifting, while ensuring that safety measures remain. The analysis will be verified by using strain gauges on lifts of complex blocks. Additionally, the project will evaluate the use of integrated lifting lugs in place of temporary pad-eyes.
Program Funding: $378K Industry Cost Share: $378K
Large Scale Computer Simulation Modeling System Enhancements
Project Lead: NASSCO
Objective: To expand upon the current Large Scale Modeling and Simulation project, which focuses on scheduled production workload modeling within simulated facilities subject to their constraints, with the intention of identifying production bottlenecks and enabling the user to identify improved production plans. The project will enhance the system to add the ability to: define and use statistical variances; apply learning algorithms; and define, generate and use parametrically described interim products within the system. Program Funding: $1.1M Industry Cost Share: $900K TransSystems, Inc; Atlantec ES; Penn State/ARL
ERP Integration with CAD
Project Lead: VT Halter Marine
Objective: To automate the exchange of business data contained in the Product Information Model (PIM) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) material management/procurement application by creating a non-shipyard specific tool that can be implemented throughout the industry.
Program Funding: $700K Industry Cost Share: $700K Austal USA, Todd Pacific Shipyards, Bollinger Shipyards, Marinette Marine, NG Shipbuilding-Gulf Coast, Praeses LLC, Jerry Pittman & Assoc., ShipConstructor USA
Process Oriented Visual Planning Tool (POV Planner)
Project Lead: Todd Pacific Shipyards
Objective: To develop a user-friendly production planning tool that incorporates data from three commercial software tools: a Product Modeler (ShipConstructor), a Product Visualization Tool (NavisWorks) and a Work Simulation Tool (WorkSim). The POV Planner will consist of a complete set of standard shipbuilding process templates and a suite of tools.
Program Funding: $432K Cost Share: $436K
Integrated Logistics Environment (ILE)
Project Lead: GD Electric Boat
Team Members: NG Shipbuilding-Gulf Coast, Product Data Services Corp.
Objective: To continue the efforts of the Integrated Shipbuilding Environment (ISE) series of projects by facilitating data exchange and interoperability throughout the entire life cycle of the ship. In particular, the Ship Common Information Model (SCIM), will be completed and the Ship Common Information Model Evaluation will demonstrate the effectiveness of the Navy Product Data Initiative (NPDI) by migrating the Virginia Class product model data to a Joint Team environment, focusing on piping and structural models.
Program Funding: $1.2M Industry Cost Share: $1.2M
Advanced Systems Development of the Remote Climbing Robot
Project Lead: Robotic Technologies of Tennessee
Team Members: NG Shipbuilding-Gulf Coast, Bath Iron Works, Tennessee Technological University
Objective: To develop enhancements to the current mobile robot which will increase the number of weld types, broaden the spectrum of applications and provide for remote operation. The three-phase project includes actuation and instrumentation to enable remote operation; 'close-the-loop' enhancement to provide adaptive motion control to follow geometric features of the weld seam; and efficiency gains in the welding process by offloading repetitive control tasks and allowing the operator to focus on bead setup and quality monitoring.
Program Funding: $198K Industry Cost Share: $198K