The AWSM™ technology represents a new paradigm for ship manufacturing that redesigns manufacturing processes and uses computing and wireless technologies to deliver information–activity statuses, resource availability, design and scheduling changes–to every user, work crew, or process involved in the project.
A central challenge in any large-scale manufacturing environment is to effectively adjust to production and procurement glitches that ripple across and continually threaten manufacturing schedules. The ship manufacturing industry is no exception. With manufacturing projects that stretch over years and involve numerous divisions, materials, facilities, and manpower, how can U.S. shipyards achieve the kind of proactive flexibility needed to develop and maintain the most efficient and cost-effective production schedules?
IATMS is a unified framework for geolocation knowledge that provides instant visualization of MRO assets, improving asset utilization and scheduling and MRO flow-times. IATMS also provides knowledge discovery for equipment task and resource relationships using geolocation and other data sources.
The Air Force’s Tinker Air Force Base (TAFB), Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center (OC-ALC) and the Hill Air Force Base (HAFB), Ogden Air Logistics Center (OO-ALC) are responsible for the maintenance, repair, and overhaul of billions of dollars worth of aircraft each year. In addition to the actual nuts and bolts work on aircraft, a significant undertaking in itself, MRO activities involve the coordinated planning, scheduling, and moving of not only the aircraft, but also the thousands of pieces of ground support equipment (GSE) and other assets used in MRO work. At Tinker, more than 3500 items, ranging from huge cranes and air-conditioners to wrenches and drills, are required for MRO work that is spread over an area the size of a small city. MRO planning and coordination is a tightly orchestrated endeavor: aircraft, parts, and GSE required for each step, large items that can be difficult and time consuming to stage and deploy, must be in place when and where they are needed and must accommodate the requirements of other ongoing MRO work. A lag at any step in the schedule—the result of movement conflicts or double scheduled GSE, for example—can have a ripple effect, impacting other downstream MRO work and leading to missed deadlines, snowballing cost overruns, and, most significantly, compromised mission readiness.
Test and Evaluation (T&E) at Edwards AFB involves collecting large volumes of data that must then be processed for display, analysis, and storage in the digital world of micro-controllers, processors, and computer networks. This data processing challenge is the focus of Edwards AFB’s development of a “smart transducer” framework that supports controller-to-transducer and transducer-to-transducer processing for their T&E operations. KBSI’s Framework for Intelligent Support of Smart Transducers (FIST™) initiative built a framework that allows for a plug-and-play capability for large-scale smart transducer deployments. The FIST™ technology exploits the inherent benefits of the smart transducer technology and revolutionizes the way in which flight test and instrumentation engineers design, implement, test and manage sensor networks.
The TraceLogic initiative is developing methods, processes, and algorithms to decipher the hidden rules or logic of complex flight operations aboard Navy aircraft carriers. The TraceLogic technology will help the Navy to better understand and address the technical and pragmatic problems associated with improving flight operation performance.
Operations on aircraft carriers have been described as “controlled chaos” that involve a complex, choreographed mix of flight-mission preparations, launch, recovery, and mission close-out operations. Critical activities take place on the hangar deck, the flight deck, and in the control center and these activities are performed by personnel with distinct roles, using mobile and fixed equipment, ordnance, and fuel. Missions are often in flux, and a single equipment failure can throw the entire plan of action into a tailspin.