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Manufacturing of Fuel Cell Hybrid Systems for Extended Mission Capabilities

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OBJECTIVE / SOLUTION

Develop a semi-automated manufacturing process resulting in decreased production costs and increased production output for compact, silent, fuel cell hybrid systems for Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV), Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), and man-portable power systems.

Achievements

• Increased reliability and production rates while decreasing costs for fuel cells used on UGV and man-portable platforms to extend mission duration
• Enabling future robotics projects that are extending the reach of the Warfighter through robotics
• Capability to have long silent watch operations
• Developed an automated system which will include improved quality control tests to verify both cell and stack consistency.
• Incorporated a flowable or formable insulation to reduce material waste
• Conducted a design of experiments to determine root cause of flaws during tube extrusion. Developed methods to control contamination, material consistency, and components.
• Improved heat exchanger performance and cost reduction
• Established a baseline Process Capability (Cpk) and improve all manufacturing process that are less than 1.33.

Benefits

• Semi-automation of fuel cell and fuel cell stack fabrication processes
• Increased production capabilities
• Improved quality control
• Heat exchanger performance and cost enhancement
• High temp insulation cost reduction and modification to accommodate domestic

Transition and Weapon Systems / Secondary Items Impacted

• TALON Robot

 

 

POC: Army ManTech Manager, U.S. Army Research, Development, and Engineering Command (RDECOM), Aviation Missile Research, Development and Engineering Center (AMRDEC), Manufacturing Science & Technology Division, ATTN: RDMR-SEM, 5400 Fowler Road, Redstone Arsenal, AL 35898-5000

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