ARL chairs corrosion workshop in Virginia

March 03, 2015

By T'Jae Ellis, ARL Public Affairs Office

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. – Research scientists working to address corrosion problems on military assets met February 11–12 at the Institute for Defense Analyses' corporate offices at the Mark Center in Alexandria, Va., to discuss corrosion policies that guide science and technology.

For decades, corrosion has been the military's most formidable foe, degrading the structural health of mainly metal-based systems and components like air and ground vehicles and their support equipment. According to the 2011 study commissioned by the Department of Defense Corrosion Prevention and Control Integrated Product Team, the estimated the annual corrosion-related cost for Army ground vehicles to be $1.6 billion, or 12.6 percent of the total maintenance costs for all Army ground vehicles.

Pauline M. Smith, Deputy Branch Chief for coatings, corrosion and engineered polymers at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory, said she expects that at the conclusion of this year's event, researchers will expand ways to improve DOD interaction between policy makers and the science and technology community, especially for corrosion.

"This workshop incorporated matters that provide context and interactive panel discussions that explore and probe issues and opportunities, especially for corrosion. The primary goals of this workshop were to encourage open and frank exchange of ideas, and to stimulate a broader discussion on key corrosion issues, on strategic investment, and on policy," Smith said. "The workshop was unique because it provides a holistic look at corrosion in a national security context and enables the identification of areas in which the M&P community should focus its research efforts."

The keynote address was given by Vice Admiral William Hilarides, of the Naval Sea Systems Command. He addressed how corrosion S&T could better effect acquisition and its challenges.

Dr. Beth Ann Pearson, global manager for the Metal and Plastics Sherwin-Williams Product Finishes Division, presented a special keynote on Corrosion Technology Transition and Product Insertion: Successes and Lessons Learned – An Industrial Perspective."

In 2013, ARL approved an aerosol enhanced corrosion epoxy primer as the first epoxy technology available in aerosol form. It is used for small jobs and touch-ups away from the finishing area.

The Origin and Progress of OSD Corrosion Office Strategic Corrosion Plan was presented by Daniel Dunmire, the director of the DOD Office of Corrosion Policy and Oversight, and the principal staff assistant in corrosion, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics along with Mr. Richard Hays, Deputy Director, DOD Corrosion Policy and Oversight Office.

The second day keynote was on, "Prevention and Control of Corrosion is a Life-Cycle Activity – Design the System, Design the Product Support System, Support the Designs," presented by Dr. Roger D. Hamerlinck, senior acquisition policy specialist, Office of the Assistant to the Secretary of the Army (Acquisition, Logistics and Technology.

The luncheon speaker was Dr. David Robertson, from the Air Force Corrosion Control and Prevention Executive, who addressed the importance and vitality of corrosion control as a discipline/culture.

The workshop format incorporated matters that provide context and interactive panel discussions that explore and probe issues and opportunities.

This workshop was hosted by Reliance 21, the DOD's Science and Technology (S&T) joint planning and coordination process, which is led by the Science and Technology Executive Committee and chaired by Assistant Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering.

Dr. Jeffrey Zabinsky, ARL's Materials and Manufacturing Science Division chief, is president of Reliance 21.

"DOD weapons systems will remain vital components of our defense structure far beyond their design life, and are becoming increasingly degraded by corrosion and susceptible to its effects," Zabinsky said. "Combating and managing corrosion is paramount for keeping these aging systems safe, reliable and affordable. This workshop was timely as we prepare the path forward and bring focus to the value of science and engineering in sustainment."

The strength of Reliance 21 is demonstrated in the cross-cutting collaborative teams that provide strategic and technical leadership of the S&T workforce. The goal is to ensure that the DOD S&T community provides solutions and advice to the Department's senior-level decision makers, Warfighters, Congress, and other stakeholders in the most effective and efficient manner possible. This is achieved through an ecosystem and infrastructure that enables information sharing, alignment of effort, coordination of priorities, and support for scientists and engineers across the Department.


Last Update / Reviewed: March 3, 2015