The EPAS initiative focused on improving T-700 engine production at the Corpus Christi Army Depot (CCAD) using a comprehensive approach that combined process mapping and analysis, detailed work breakdown structures, part/material control and kitting, and shop floor decision support and scheduling systems.
KBSI, working in partnership with Army Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM) and AT&T in support of the Army’s Rotary Wing Aircraft Sustainment Program (RWASP), focused on improving T-700 engine production at the Corpus Christi Army Depot (CCAD). CCAD’s T-700 engine production was lagging far behind the Army’s mandate of 25 engines per month and engine turn around time of 120 days: T-700 production was typically averaging 10 to 15 engines per month and an engine turn around time of approximately 300 days.
The Engine Process Analysis Support (EPAS) project addressed the issue using a comprehensive approach that combined process mapping and analysis, the development of detailed work breakdown structures, part/material control and kitting, and the implementation of shop floor decision support and scheduling systems. Process mapping involves the analysis and capture of the process steps required to move an asset from induction to repair, assembly, test, and sell. This step establishes the baseline measuring and implementing improvements helps in determining the areas of focus for detailed examination analysis and potential improvements. Using these process maps and analysis results, KBSI, using feedback from CCAD domain experts, established optimal methods for engine disassembly and assembly methods that provided a focus for the remainder of the project work.
KBSI’s development of the Work Breakdown Structures (WBS) carried the process analysis to the step level by examining the Bill of Materials (BOM) and support equipment, tooling, part, and material requirements necessary to complete the individual process steps. The focus on individual component parts determines the source of supply (or suppliers) and the consumption and repair rates required per assembly-information used to drive the analysis of material supply sources for the process steps, and in the development of material control and kitting strategies.
A customized version of KBSI’s Kit Content History Reporting (KCHR) tool was configured to accommodate the CCAD shop floor requirements and systems in place in the T-700 shops. This version of the KCHR tool allowed CCAD shop floor mechanics and managers to automatically track assets in the kits and the robbing of parts among kits—a practice that gives depot workers flexibility in addressing more immediate engine production needs.
CCAD is currently producing T-700 engines at a rate averaging 40 units per month (an increase of 167%), while the moving average for turn around time has been reduced to 167 days (a reduction of 55% from its peak). The methodologies developed through the EPAS effort and the RWASP effort for the UH-60 (Airframe Process Analysis Support – APAS) have been demonstrated as methods for predictable process improvement and streamlining re-manufacturing processes in the depot environment.