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Cost Reduction of Solventless Propellants

U.S. ARMY MANTECH

Increasing the affordability of solventless propellants in an effort to increase usage. Solventless propellants are an excellent option for enhanced Soldier survivability, safety, and decreased environmental impact.

OBJECTIVE / SOLUTION

Develop a process for manufacturing solventless propellant, PAP- 8386, safely using a shear roll mill, and possibly a twin screw extruder, that would signifi cantly reduce the cost of solventless propellants manufactured using the current conventional and labor intensive Preroll and Evenspeed operations. Density, burn rate and mechanical properties will be examined and compared for propellants manufactured using the new and existing process.

ACHIEVEMENTS

• Awarded Task Order to a European company June 2010
• Awarded a second contract to a Domestic company August 2010 and a second European company in March 2011
• Successfully extruded a 5/8 inch outside diameter chord of inert propellant utilizing a 40mm twin-screw mixer/extruder

BENEFITS

• Cost reduction in solventless propellant utilizing an automated process
• Minimizes the risk of potential Soldier safety problems with residual solvent in propellant
• Improve Insensitive Munition (IM) and precision performance
• Eliminates solvent (ether) emissions during processing and propellants are environmentally friendly (green)

STATUS

• Processing of 100 pounds of inert material with a Shear Roll Mill (SRM) by the European company was completed in May 2011
• Twin Screw Extruder (TSE) to process and characterize inert material was completed in April 2011
• TSE live material to be processed by the European Company in Summer and Fall 2011

WEAPON SYSTEMS / SECONDARY ITEMS IMPACTED

• M865 and M1002 Tank Training Rounds
• AA2 Propellant for MK90 Rocket Grains
• N5 Propellant for Mine Clearing Line Charge (MICLIC) and Anti-Personnel Obstacle Breaching System (APOBS)
• JA2 Propellant for M830A1 Tank Cartridge
• RPD-380 Propellant for M829A3 Tank Cartridge
• Surface Coated Double Base Propellant for 120mm Tactical Rounds
• High-Explosive AntiTank Multi-Purpose Training (HEAT-MP-T) Rounds
• 25mm M793 Training Rounds
• M1A2 Abrams Main Battle Tank

POTENTIAL COST AVOIDANCE

• Return on Investment of 7.5 to 1 with a cost benefi t of $10-$15/lb.

POC: Army ManTech Manager, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM), Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC), Development and Engineering Center, Propulsion and Direct Fire Branch, ATTN: RDAR-MEE-W, B382, Picatinny Arsenal, NJ 07806-5000

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