The US Army has approved an AAR-built Type V lightweight multipurpose shelter (LMS) during its first article testing, marking a significant milestone in the system's development and delivery programme.
Three LMS variations, including Type I (electromagnetic interference (EMI) shielded), Type III (EMI shielded with tunnel), and Type V (non-EMI shielded with double rear doors) were ordered by the army under a $14m five-year indefinite-delivery indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract in 2011.
Manufactured by AAR Mobility Systems, the durable LMS shelters are designed to be installed on the army's high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicles (HMMWVs).
AAR Technology Products vice-president Lee Krantz said the milestone confirmed that all three LMS variants are approved for use in multiple programmes that require HMMWV-mounted shelter systems.
"The results are a demonstration of our manufacturing innovation capability and our commitment to meeting customer requirements," Krantz said.
An empty version of the standardised integrated command post system (SICPS), LMS is lightweight, transportable, electromagnetic interference (EMI) protected shelter designed to serve as the primary platform for housing and operation of command and control equipment for situational awareness and tactical support in various theatres of operation.
The American Society for Testing and Materials' (ASTM) compliant system features a multi-panel design versus the traditional folded two-panel design, which has been developed using advanced friction stir welding (FSW) techniques.
Allowing metals to remain bonded in their natural state, without melting or the use of studs or fasteners, FSW leads to development of a shelter that provides added value, isolation and protection for critical in-theatre military and defence equipment.
Commenting on FSW technique, Krantz said the advanced manufacturing process enabled the company to improve the design and durability of the shelters, while addressing weight requirements.
''We believe friction stir welding is a breakthrough approach to building these shelters and represents the future in welding and lightweight design,'' Krantz said.
Image: AAR's LMS shelters are designed to be installed on high-mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicles. Photo: courtesy of AM General.