Meld Manufacturing Corporation, Christiansburg, Virginia, USA, has been selected for Phase III of the US Army’s Expeditionary Technology Search (xTechSearch), which it initially joined in August 2018. The xTechSearch aims to identify potential collaborators which can work with the army to address the challenges of modernisation; twenty-five technologies across all focus areas were selected by the US Army to advance to Phase III.
Meld’s focus pitch for xTechSearch involved using its patented metal Additive Manufacturing technology to manufacture and repair combat vehicle components and armour. Because Meld machines are operated in an open atmosphere, and reportedly have lower power requirements than competing processes, they can be implemented at both military depots and forward operating bases.
It is expected that the use of Meld could provide the US Army with the strategic ability to make repairs and produce components for combat vehicles as close to the battlefield as possible, while also improving overall efficiency and lowering costs. The Next Generation Combat Vehicle is one of eight US Army technology focus areas for which xTechSearch is seeking novel, disruptive concepts and technologies.
“Meld is a con-ex portable, field-ready technology capable of supporting our warfighters today,” stated Dr Chase Cox, Meld Manufacturing Corporation’s Director of Technology. “Lower-power, safer, easy-to-use equipment capable of repair in the field offers a significant advantage. Before vehicles get to the field, OEM use of Meld can reduce overall price and lead time.”