By FATIMA FAKHREDDINE, Staff Writer
Pravansu Mohanty, a professor of engineering at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, was given about $460,000 by the U.S. Army to build technology that will help repair their military components in the field.
“I have worked with both the Army and the Navy for almost 10 years,” Mohanty continues, “The Army has funded my lab over $5M so far, the Navy has funded over $7M.”
The U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center in Warren, Michigan is working with Mohanty on his invention of a laser assisted cold spray.
“I have undertaken many high risk and high dollar volume research projects earlier.”
According to Mohanty, the U.S. Army wants him to, “Demonstrate that our laser assisted cold spray technology can effectively perform repair and maintenance on their components in the field. Demonstrate its benefits in terms of quality and cost competitiveness.”
Mohanty invented the laser technology in his lab.
“The only way to compete in federal level is to demonstrate that we have something that is unique and we can deliver. It’s a very simple formula.”
The opportunity to take this project was not overwhelming for him.
“This is a one year demonstration project,” he continues, “Based on the success, there will be follow on funding to develop prototype devices and eventually commercial arrangement for them to deploy the technology in the field.”
Mohanty will have some help during this period.
“My graduate and undergraduate students are the key members of the team. They are the ones who conduct the experiments.”
Though he worked with U.S. Army and Navy in the past he is grateful they appreciate his work.
“I was obviously happy that our research and technology is recognized and valued.”