The Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee today approved the Fiscal Year 2019 Department of Defense Appropriations bill and included $2 million for the Rochester Institute of Technology’s (RIT) decade-long research partnership with the Office of Naval Research (ONR) aimed at development of technologies designed to extend the service life of military combat vehicles and reduce costs associated with vehicle maintenance.
The RIT research program, led by research scientists located in the Center for Integrated Manufacturing Studies, has concentrated on the
remanufacturing into like-new condition of critical systems with a number of “legacy” Marine Corps combat vehicles including the Light Armored Vehicle (LAV).
In addition to the remanufacturing of critical components, the RIT research has also involved the development of an innovative platform design framework incorporating improved vehicle health and condition monitoring while in use to allow for greater remanufacturability of replacement vehicle components.
ONR has great interest in the RIT remanufacturing and vehicle monitoring research because of the pressing need to keep legacy vehicles in the field during current long deployments and for the long-term savings to the military in not having to replace critical components and entire vehicles early in their life-cycles.
Senator Charles Schumer championed the RIT program and requested the $2 million in funding during the Subcommittee’s deliberations, bringing to the attention of the Subcommittee RIT’s excellent research track record in partnership with ONR and the continuing need for this research.
The National Group, which has represented RIT in Washington since 1985, assisted RIT in making the Subcommittee members aware of the vehicle life-cycle extension program’s success.
The $2 million in funding must now be approved by a House-Senate conference committee on the Defense Appropriations bill which will occur in September, and then be signed into law by the President. The funding is located in the ONR research budget under the program line ‘Marine Corps Landing Force Technology”.