Department of Defense (DoD) maintenance activities are committed to protecting human health and the environment while ensuring the success of their core mission. Environment, safety, and occupational health (ESOH) must be considered as part of a maintenance program’s overall cost, schedule, and performance risk reduction. Due to the inherent dangers of working in maintenance facilities which often involves operating large machines, working with solvents and coatings, or using heavy tools and equipment often in tight spaces; managers must apply risk management strategies and protective measures to reduce or eliminate mishaps, injuries, and illnesses. This forum will discuss some of the environmental/safety practices implemented at DoD maintenance activities to include advancing safe operations through advanced materials and coatings, hazardous materials removal, confined space monitoring, and worker safety through the use of robotics.
1300-1305: Welcome – Greg Kilchenstein (OSD-MR) Presentation
1305-1309: Administrative Notes – Debbie Lilu (NCMS)
1309-1330: Advancing Safe Operations through Advanced Materials and Coatings – Scott Hodges (GVSC) and Brian Kornish (PPG) Presentation
1330-1350: Hexavalent Chromium Removal – Lisa Graf (PEO Ground Combat Systems) Presentation
1350-1410: Safe Integration of Cold Spray in Mx Operations – Dr. Matthew Siopis (ARL) Presentation
1410-1430: Confined Space Monitoring – Joe Murphy (PNSY)
1430-1450: Extended Operations Using Robotics – Jim Miller (SARCOS) Presentation
1500: Wrap-Up – Greg Kilchenstein (OSD-MR) Presentation
Event: On 23 February 2021, the Joint Technology Exchange Group (JTEG), in coordination with the National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS), hosted a virtual forum on “Environmental Impacts & Worker Safety Forum”.
Purpose: The purpose of this forum was to examine and share information on environmental impacts and worker safety capabilities available to the DoD maintenance community. The forum provided descriptions of capabilities employed by the military Services as well as programs from both academia and industry.
Welcome: Greg Kilchenstein (OSD-MR) welcomed everyone to the forum and thanked the presenters and all the listeners for their attendance. He also stated how important environmental impacts and worker safety are in the DoD maintenance community.
Administrative: This was an open forum. The presentations, along with questions and answers, were conducted through Adobe Connect. Some of the presentations were available online at the JTEG website at http://jteg.ncms.org/ during the brief. A separate audio line was used. We had over 75 participants from across DOD, industry, and academia join in the forum.
Advancing Safe Operations through Advanced Materials and Coatings – Brian Kornish (PPG) provided a briefing on thermal spray powder application. He described using thermal spray equipment to apply and heat powder paint onto thick gauged and large scale parts in a single step application process that requires no oven and can be instantly returned to service upon cooling. The powder is VOC and Haps free, and 100 percent solid. Brian stated that PPG is ready to evaluate the technology at a DoD base, starting phase II level and moving out of the lab.
Hexavalent Chromium Removal – Lisa Graf (PEO Ground Combat Systems) briefed a Commercial Technologies for Maintenance Activities (CTMA) project to transition a DoD sustainment program to Zinc Nickel (ZnNi) fasteners which are replacing hexavalent chromium fasteners. The project involves creating a new MIL-SPEC for ZnNi, creating a master fastener database that looks across all of PEO GCS programs for all M109 fasteners to determine the “economy of scale” for DLA to buy volumes, provisioning new hardware, determining a valid source of supply, developing tools and efficient methods for logistics product updates, and documenting the process.
Safe Integration of Cold Spray in Mx Operations – Dr. Matthew Siopis (ARL) provided an overview of the cold spray process and described a typical spray booth configuration and characteristics. He described powder and dust combustibility and safety and detailed cold spray DHA and DOT results. He followed up with general safety practices, safe metallic powder storage, and waste management.
Confined Space Monitoring – Joe Murphy (PNSY) discussed a project to develop a monitoring system for shipyard operations that will enable real-time sensing and assessment of workers and their surrounding environment in confined spaces and other potentially hazardous areas. Phase 1: perform baseline testing and evaluation of the current system – developed for WR-AFB by Aptima, Inc., and Phase 2: Produce shipyard specific product design specifications. (Based on Shipyard requirements and work environment) are complete. The remaining phases include the development of a prototype system for shipyard with current sensors and technologies, enhance and improve the prototype by developing novel gas sensors and accommodating other new technologies commercially available, performing enhanced testing and evaluation of the new system, and implementing final modifications and updates and produce a ready to use system for the shipyard. Prepare user guide and update system documentation. The technical components include portable sensors, a data network, remote monitoring displays, and alerting and intervention.
Extended Operations and Worker Safety Using Robotics – Jim Miller (SARCOS) described the Sarcos suite of dexterous robotic solutions that are capable of supporting DoD sustainment operations while underway, forward deployed, or in the depots. These robotic solutions are designed to augment strength and endurance, reduce injuries, and optimize productivity and are capable of 100 percent load relief and near continuous run-time. They are able to perform precise tasks in dangerous environments, reduce at-height and overhead fatigue, injury, and exposure to hazardous conditions, and allow a single worker to perform heavy lifts that traditionally required several workers. Additionally, he discussed remote visual inspection robots as a complement to other inspection tools.
HVAC Sanitation – David Kopczynski (Siemens) led a discussion on needle point bipolar ionization (NPBI) which creates millions of charged ions which render pathogens inactive by disrupting their surface proteins upon contact. The presented a chart with third party testing results showing “kill rates” of various pathogens to include CoVID-19. Jay Masters (Siemens) described contaminant tracking and simulating complex airflow in a ventilated environment. Large complex interiors or detailed small confined areas can be easily modeled leading to design optimization that can aide in ventilation system performance and help establish quarantine guidelines.
Q&A – A Q&A occurred after each briefer finished their presentation. Questions and answers will be posted on the JTEG website with these minutes.
Closing Comments: Greg Kilchenstein thanked the presenters for their contributions and all the work being done to support environmental and worker safety efforts across the DoD, academia, and industry. He suggested continuing the information exchange beyond the forum and the importance of collaboration within the DoD maintenance community.
- Post remaining presentations to the JTEG website upon receiving approval.
Next JTEG Meeting: The next scheduled JTEG virtual forum is 30 March 2021, 1:00 – 3:00 pm EST. The topic is “Laser Coating Ablation”.
POC this action is Ray Langlais, firstname.lastname@example.org, (571) 633-8019
Advancing Safe Operations through Advanced Materials and Coatings – Brian Kornish (PPG)
Q1. What type of air handling considerations are necessary to use power coating equipment? How about Thermal Spray?
A1. We use a spray booth but it doesn’t have to be. There are no volatiles. You would want normal air mobile.
Q2. Has this technology been tested using any marine coatings?
A2. No, but interesting. Marine coatings are formulated very special. Probably OK with some applications.
Q3. Does the coating require cure in an oven after application?
A3. For traditional powder coating – yes. For thermal – no.
Q4. Is there a difference between traditional flame spray and thermal spray?
A4. Yes, the difference is in the application equipment. We purposely didn’t want flame coming out.
A5. NNSY would be interested in the capability.
Q6. Is your team also working on cold spray tech?
A6. No. I am familiar with cold spray, but we are not using it at this time.
Q7. Is tgic polyester thermal spray coatings now on the bad environmental list (hazmat/health)
A7. I don’t know the answer. Please provide me the contact information and I will have a SME talk directly with the person who submitted the question.
Q8. Is a dust hazard analysis required based on specific circumstances of the site?
A8. We try to work with the site environmental, Safety, Health, and Facilities people.
Hexavalent Chromium Removal – Lisa Graf (PEO Ground Combat Systems)
Q1. Did your team share the “dirty hardware” data base with DLA? And how did the analytics target dirty hardware? Is the algorithm extensible to others?
A1. The algorithm is definitely extensible to others. We have not shared with DLA at this time as their current focus is on the solution. Eventually, we will provide them the database.
Q2. How are the updated document pages provided to all the appropriate maintainers in the enterprise? On paper or electronically?
A2. Typically electronically, but sometimes on paper.
Q3. Is there consideration for plating those 80 parts with zinc-nickel vice re-procuring them? A3. Those parts at Anniston Army Depot (ANAD) that we reclaim and currently plate with hard chrome/Hex-chrome plating – Zinc Nickel cannot be plated to the thickness required for these parts (I am told by ANAD who looked into this). Additionally it is more expensive and would require investment into new equipment. What they are doing instead is, which others in the toxic metals working group are also working towards, a replacement material for this process that isn’t ZnNi. I can’t remember exactly what it is but it isn’t proven out yet. I can put them in touch with Lee Sanders from ANAD if they would like.
Safe Integration of Cold Spray in Mx Operations – Dr. Matthew Siopis (ARL)
Q1. How small of particles get trapped by the dust collector?
A1. The size is based on the requirements set by State and local jurisdictions.
Q2. How do we measure the effectiveness of the system and allowables in the exhaust?
A2. The requirements on the system will specify.
Q3. Does Solvus Global provide property results for the different materials they provide to be used in the Dust Hazard Analysis?
A3. The chart I showed are all the materials.
Confined Space Monitoring – Joe Murphy (PNSY)
Q1. Are the specific atmospheric hazards tailorable for different confined spaces?
A1. Yes. We have a compliance-based monitoring system. The sensor pack is customizable. We spent a big part of the past year defining our requirements. The final stage will be taking the lessons learned from the prototype.
Q2. Once you are successful, how will Navy approach expanding confined space monitoring across all shipyards?
A2. Per the NCMS process, this project was competed. So it will be available to anyone, from my understanding, after the pilot is complete.
Extended Operations Using Robotics – Jim Miller (SARCOS)
Q1. Will the XO be able to do lifts like mentioned in a prior slide?
A1. Yes. The intent is up to 200 lbs. maximum. The greatest benefit is in the 2-3 person lifts.
Q2. I was talking emergency lifts like for a truck etc.
A2. No, it is not for lifting trucks.
HVAC Sanitation – David Kopczynski (Siemens) & Jay Masters