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Inspection confirms perfect performance for Composite Advantage FRP submarine camels

News International-French

25 Feb 2013

A recent inspection of composite submarine camels developed and built by Composite Advantage for the U.S. Navy gave the FRP “boat bumpers” perfect marks for performance.

Composite Advantages (CA) installed the first set of universal composite camels in 2010 at naval submarine base New London, Groton, Conn.  The advanced materials manufacturer built and installed two more sets for the submarine base in 2011. The inspection, led by a Navy facilities engineer along with CA engineers, confirmed that all three sets of composite camels were effectively transferring high loads to protect nuclear-powered submarines and piers while requiring zero maintenance. The inspection was aided by a waterline painted on the camels to check for trim and freeboard.

The Navy selected Dayton, Ohio-based CA and Whitman, Requardt & Associates, Baltimore, Md., for a design-build project to develop and fabricate a universal composite camel to replace its steel and timber products which required annual maintenance and frequent replacement.  Leveraging its technology experience in producing very large fiber reinforced composite structures CA manufactured the FRP camels to accommodate all classes of underwater craft up to the Navy’s largest ballistic missile submarines.

“FRP composite material resists corrosion so maintenance with these camels is minimal and lifecycle costs are significantly reduced,” says Scott Reeve, president of CA. “A universal or one-size-fits-all deep draft camel offers greater flexibility in berthing submarines, helps reduce inventory, allows support between Navy bases and provides a cost savings by improving operational efficiency.”

CA is a leading manufacturer of very large fiber reinforced composite parts, up to 52 feet, for structurally demanding applications and corrosive environments.  Composite Advantage has developed ground-breaking processing techniques and combined them with efficient manufacturing processes to give customers products that solve technical challenges.  The advanced manufacturing company primarily serves the infrastructure and construction industries, fabricating large, complex parts that incorporate the finishing and assembly details customers need to reduce installation costs.  Composite Advantage products range from vehicle and pedestrian bridges, waterfront infrastructure, and rail station platforms to high performance pads and mats.  

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