Creating Tools for Simpler, Faster Airfield Repairs
Operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and other locations have highlighted a need for better methods to quickly and effectively establish or improve airfields. Craters, spalls, and other conditions that limit airfield use can create costly delays that aren't adequately resolved by old techniques. Researchers at ERDC’s Geotechnical and Structures Laboratory (GSL) have developed the Airfield Damage Repair (ADR) modernization program to ensure rapid and effective establishment and repair of airfields.
Enhancing Infrastructure for Air Support
Adequate airfield facilities are undeniably vital to the success of a mission. Creating new airfields and repairing substandard ones in critical locations can reduce the time and costs required to complete an operation.
The ADR program addresses all phases of operation: opening the base, sustaining the mission, expanding the base, and recovering the base. GSL researchers have developed and tested a range of repair kits and materials that assist in rapid damage assessment, crater repair, and ongoing maintenance.
Scalable and Uniform
The effectiveness of the ADR program is enhanced by the fact that the tools developed for it can be used in all scenarios. The equipment, methods and materials for each situation are standardized and can be used by all services. The scope of response provided can be adjusted based on variables including:
- Expected damage
- Repair time requirements
- Aircraft traffic (type and load)
- Aircraft pass levels
- Materials available/not available at site
- Equipment available/not available at site
- Equipment and material pre-positioned
The ADR modernization program has developed several efforts tailored to assisting critical aspects of airfield support.
- Repair Materials Certification Program (RMCP): Tests, evaluates and approves the materials used in pavement repair
- Sustained Pavement Repair (SuPR) Kit: Pre-packaged kits for the rapid repair of spalls and related minor pavement damage
- Critical Runway Assessment and Repair (CRATR) Joint Capabilities Technology Demonstration (JCTD): Developing automated damage assessment tools, quick-set repair materials, and lightweight equipment to better identify and repair multiple spalls and craters
- Airfield Mat Version X (AM-X): A program developing a lightweight mat system to facilitate airfield parking ramp expansion
“The SuPR kit is user-friendly and well thought out; anything that you can think of that you may need for a sustainment repair, spall repair and small jobs, medium jobs, it’s all right there.”
— Master Sgt. Tellas Johnson, work crew team leader with the 633rd Civil Engineer Squadron at Langley Air Force Base, Va.