The US Army has developed a cold spray process to repair turret gun mounts on the M2 Bradley fighting vehicle.
The process was developed by a team of scientists and engineers from the US Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Army Research Laboratory and Ground Vehicle Systems Center.
Other team members were from CCDC Armaments Center, Bradley Product Manager and Red River Army Depot (RRAD).
The project was funded by the US Army’s Manufacturing Technology Program.
CCDC ARL materials engineer Gehn Ferguson said: “This project demonstrated the ability to apply new manufacturing technologies to bring components back into service that would otherwise be scrapped during depot maintenance operations.”
RRAD inspects Bradley vehicle gun mounts for any excessive wear.
In 2017, CCDC ARL visited RRAD to assess the wear on the turret gun mounts. Following the visit, CCDC ARL worked on the development of a process to repair the Bradley gun mounts using cold spray.
Ferguson added: “Cold spray is an emerging technology that will enable the army to reclaim worn components that were previously replaced with new parts. This new technology reduces lifecycle cost and improves systems availability.”
The cold spray repair process will deliver significant cost savings. While a new 25mm gun mount costs more than $25,000, repairing the system using cold spray technology costs around $1,000.
In addition, the process will improve the readiness of the Bradley vehicle and reduce the need for stockpiling new gun mounts.
CCDC Armaments Center’s contribution to the project included designing and engineering the turret.
CCDC ARL developed and demonstrated the cold spray repair process for the gun mounts.
The project team intends to use the process to repair four to five gun mounts in the next six-month period.
The technology’s application could be expanded to include extending the life of new gun mounts.
The team is also exploring the use of the process to repair corrosion on combat vehicle surfaces and to coat the interior of cannon barrels.