Original Date: 02/28/2000
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Information : Shock Charge Loading and Pouring
Crane Army Ammunition Activity manufactures shock charges in various sizes for the U.S. Navy. Since there was no single dedicated facility for the loading and pouring of the shock charges, a new facility was dedicated which provided improvements in total labor for the process and additional production space for other programs.
Crane Army Ammunition Activity (CAAA) manufactures shock charges in various sizes for the U.S. Navy. The setups were different for the various sizes, and no single dedicated facility for loading and pouring the shock charges existed. There were six different multi-use pouring facilities that could be used depending on their availability. Each production run required modification of the facility to accommodate the setup, and then the setup had to be disassembled to free the facility for other purposes. The molten explosive was dry mixed, melted, and poured using kettles. The explosive is sensitive to temperature variations, which causes non-uniform consistency in the mixture resulting in quality problems.
CAAA had a facility that had been placed into the lay-away-in-place program and was previously used for Rockeye bomb pouring. Management was presented with the idea of removing the Rockeye line since it was no longer needed and dedicating the pouring facilities for the shock charges. The high set-up costs for the multi-use facilities would be eliminated with this approach, and the available equipment was compatible with all of the various shock charge sizes. Management approved the idea, and the building was modified to accommodate the shock charge pouring.
The new facility provides a higher quality product since the mixing and melting kettles are on the second floor and a direct pour of the explosive can be accomplished. The piping system for the pouring is jacketed with circulating hot water in the jacket to maintain a constant temperature of the explosive during the transfer. The new process is safer because manual transfer of the molten explosive is minimized. The dedicated facility eliminated 75% of the total labor for the process since set-up and tear-down were not required for each production run. The dedicated facility also provided additional production space for other programs.
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