Corpus Christi Army Depot
Pictured left to right: Jamie Felgenhauer (CCAD), Pierre Harter (WSU-NIAR), Scott Phillips (ALC), Cindy Ponder (FVL-CFT), Brian Brown (WSU-NIAR), Keith Small (LEAD), Phuong Do (LEAD)


Leaders and technical experts from the U.S. Army’s Future Vertical Lift Cross-Functional Team (FVL CFT), Wichita State University’s (WSU) National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) and experts from the U.S. Army’s Aviation and Missile Command (AMCOM) visited The Corpus Christi Army Depot recently. 

The group explored several areas of on-going and potential future research in collaboration with FirePoint Innovations Center and toured UH-60 hangars and maintenance and logistics/supply chain areas.  Existing opportunities that are analogous to future FVL sustainment challenges are being chosen where applicable to help demonstrate new technology for FVL while also making an impact on today’s existing fleets. 

“As new technology evolves to support sustainment on the future fleet, the enduring fleet will receive these benefits in the near term”, said Cindy Ponder, FVL CFT senior sustainment advisor. “Partnering with WSU and the Organic Industrial Base allows FVL to focus on a ‘Bridging Strategy’ for sustainment between the enduring and future fleets.”

“We are excited to work with the FVL CFT team as well as the Letterkenny and Corpus teams to develop and adapt technologies that can prepare these sites for future FVL sustainment, while making an impact on today’s fleets,” said Pierre Harter, WSU associate VP of research operations and NIAR director of R&D.

About NIAR
NIAR provides research, testing, certification and training for aviation and manufacturing technologies. Established in 1985, NIAR has a +$125 million annual budget; 850 staff and nearly one million square feet of laboratory and office space in four locations across the city of Wichita, the Air Capital of the World. NIAR laboratories include Additive Manufacturing, Advanced Coatings, Advanced Manufacturing, Aging Aircraft, Ballistics/Impact Dynamics, CAD/CAM, Composites/Advanced Materials, Crash Dynamics, Environmental/ Electromagnetic Test, Full-scale Structural Test, Nondestructive Test, Reverse Engineering, Robotics/Automation, Virtual Engineering, eXtended Reality and the Walter H. Beech Wind Tunnel.