The Air Force Research Laboratory’s (AFRL’s) Manufacturing and Industrial Technologies Division and the contractor team of Cornerstone Research Group, A&P Technology and CRG’s affiliate, Spintech LLC, conducted research to quantify the benefits of replacing legacy manufacturing processes with novel processes for the fabrication of an 11-foot long, S-shaped engine inlet duct.
The approach replaces the hand applied composite prepreg with an automated overbraid process which applies dry fiber to a mandrel. The very heavy multi-piece steel mandrel was replaced with a light-weight single-piece shape-memory polymer mandrel and the dry braided carbon fiber was processed with a low cost epoxy resin using a vacuum assisted resin transfer molding process. The team completed analysis of the overbraid architecture, fabrication of a shape memory polymer (SMP) forming tool and construction of the SMP mandrel that will serve as the tool during the preform overbraid process.
One of the primary goals of this program is to understand part cost and production time benefits from introducing the new tooling and processing solutions. The final inlet duct will be delivered to the government for further integration into the Aerospace System’s Directorate’s complementary airframe design and manufacturing program. Personnel at the Aerospace Vehicles Division will conduct static ground testing of the integrated braided fuselage and inlet duct structure. Read full article here.
On January 28, 2020 CRG acquired new facilities located on Washington Church Rd. in Miamisburg Township. Because of the company’s rapid growth last year (48% increase in staff) and growth projected over the next few years, they required more space for offices, production lines and labs. See DBJ Covers CRG’s Plans to Expand.
This new property more than triples CRG’s facility space. The building is fully climate controlled, with a total of 174,000 sq ft. Located on 60 acres, the new facility adds 126,000 sq ft of manufacturing or production space, 36,000 sq ft of warehouse space, plus 12,000 sq ft of office space. This acquisition leaves room for expansion, including space available for additional new outbuildings. Once the new building is fully occupied, the current space at Earl Blvd. will be used for composites development and manufacturing.
CEO Patrick Hood said, “I am excited to have worked with the Dayton Development Coalition, JobsOhio, Montgomery County and Farmers and Merchants Bank to acquire the property on Washington Church Road. This property will be instrumental in our expansion plans. Our team has developed several new technology platforms rapidly reaching maturity and will require space for both production and added business staff. This property has the space to expand our development and production capacity as well as plenty of acreage to build out a campus to support additional growth.”
CRG also recently leased and moved some of its aerosystems projects into 77,000 sq ft in a building next door to their current space on Earl Blvd. In addition, Advantic, a subsidiary of CRG, has moved into 55,000 sq ft of that extra space next door to support its incredible growth. They tripled their staff in the past year.
After some renovation and re-outfitting, CRG plans to begin moving some activities to their newly acquired building in June.
One of CRG’s subsidiary businesses, Advantic, is moving to a new location in Miamisburg, Ohio. After more than doubling sales in 2018 — and growing from 12 to more than 30 employees — Advantic is moving into an eleven-acre, standalone facility at 511 Byers Road in early 2020. The building is near the Byers and Lyons roads intersection, next to Cornerstone Research Group’s headquarters.
The engineering company’s new location will triple its office footprint and nearly double its production area. Advantic’s roots are in industrial and mining industries, helping companies replace conventional building materials such as steel and concrete with advanced, non-corroding structural materials for infrastructure applications.
On May 8th, 2015, the Dayton Business Journal published a cover story about CRG titled “Innovation Machine.” The article highlighted CRG’s spin-off businesses Advantic, Spintech and NONA Composites and the industries they target.
“Patrick Hood spent years trying to perfect a model to commercialize products from his research and development firm. Seems he found the right formula and now the Dayton region stands to benefit.” If you’re a DBJ subscriber, read the full article here.
On April 13th, 2015, the Dayton Chamber of Commerce FOCUS magazine released an article about NONA Composites, LLC. NONA Composites is this year’s recipient of the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce’s Soin Award for Innovation. The award, created in 2007 and named for its sponsor, local entrepreneur Rajesh Soin, recognizes a company with a unique product that exemplifies the region’s tradition of innovation and entrepreneurship.
The Soin Award is designed to identify, honor and financially assist a company in the Dayton region that demonstrates the historical innovative spirit of the community. It carries a $25,000 prize – no small matter when a company is less than two years old. “We’re still a very small business and every dollar counts,” said NONA Composites President Ben Dietsch. “This award has helped us go a long way in being able to continue to reach out from a sales and marketing perspective and do some internal product development.”
On February 23rd, 2015, the Dayton Business Journal published an article about the success of CRG’s REACH project. Last fall, Cornerstone Research Group Inc. and its subsidiaries made a 95-foot long crane-like structure for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico. A drum burst inside a storage room at the plant, causing major issues, and the room needed to be “video mapped” before it could be sealed off permanently.
Said the article, “Cornerstone’s crane was a success as the DOE recently finished the video project, which is now being reviewed by its Accident Investigation Board while plant workers dismantle the crane. That success will bolster the company’s national reputation, which should attract more high-profile work and lead to additional jobs.” Typically a project like this crane would have taken about six months to make, but Cornerstone Research did it in seven weeks. Read the full story here. Below is a video of the REACH camera boom in use.
On February 1st, 2015, Composites World published an article about CRG’s REACH project. Commissioned for the US Department of Energy’s (DoE) Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in Carlsbad, NM, this very long 32-meter camera boom for the DoE’s appropriately named REACH project was designed for and built with carbon fiber composites, and then tested in only seven weeks, enabled by No Oven, No Autoclave (NONA) technology developed by a subsidiary of CRG, NONA Composites. The beam was light enough to be cantilevered from a steel support mounted to the pictured mobile frame.
The completed REACH system was deployed and tested six times by week seven, including tests of the camera transport rover. It was then transported to WIPP, assembled and used for training before deployment in following months. Read the Composites World article here.