TOWSON, Md. -- The Materials in Extreme Dynamic Environments Collaborative Research Alliance, or MEDE CRA, conducted its annual fall meeting Oct. 17. During the meeting, the group showcased research accomplishments for new protection materials, as well as new computational design codes and tools for armor applications.
Johns Hopkins University is the lead research organization for the alliance. 120 people participated in the meeting, including principal investigators and students from consortium institutions and researchers from the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command's Army Research Laboratory.
Special guests hailed from the United Kingdom's Defence Science and Technology Laboratory; the U.S. Army CCDC Soldier Center; the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Command; Office of Naval Research and the National Ground Intelligence Center.
Dr. Sikhanda Satapathy, from the laboratory, and Professor K.T. Ramesh, from Johns Hopkins, led the meeting, which focused on technical collaboration across the alliance and program planning for the upcoming year.
Dr. Adam Rawlett, the laboratory's senior research scientist for materials, opened the meeting with a presentation on the transition of the lab to the Army Futures Command, and an overview of the lab's essential research programs, known as ERPs.
"MEDE will provide the foundational science in direct support of the Physics of Soldier Protection to Defeat Evolving Threats ERP," Rawlett said.
The meeting also provided the opportunity to thank Dr. John Beatty, former MEDE cooperative agreement manager, who retired recently. The group presented Beatty with an official note from the laboratory's Director of the Weapons and Materials Research Directorate and a letter of recognition from the Dean of the Johns Hopkins School of Engineering.
Highlighting the event was the poster session, which provided a forum to collaborate across the MEDE CRA and with the lab's internal protection materials programs.
"This meeting enables me to see the integrated computational models which will guide armor materials design," said Dr. Cyril Williams, Army scientist.
Dr. Debjoy Mallick, an Army scientist whose research is focused on laser shock experiments said, "I enjoy the opportunity to collaborate with world-class university researchers in the MEDE CRA."
For Dr. Jeff Lloyd, co-lead of the lab's metals material group, this meeting provided a chance to meet in person and plan for the future.
"This coming year will likely be the most important for the program," Lloyd said. "We hope that the program's continued success and transition of products will show that this program continues to be a model for how academia and government organizations can partner together to solve the nation's most pressing and challenging problems."
The MEDE CRA is an integral part of the Army's Enterprise for Multiscale Research of Materials, officials said. The objective of the alliance is to develop the capability to design, optimize and fabricate material systems exhibiting revolutionary performance in extreme dynamic environments. The underpinning science for these materials will lead to improved protection for Soldiers and military vehicles.
The CCDC Army Research Laboratory is an element of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command. As the Army's corporate research laboratory, ARL discovers, innovates and transitions science and technology to ensure dominant strategic land power. Through collaboration across the command's core technical competencies, CCDC leads in the discovery, development and delivery of the technology-based capabilities required to make Soldiers more lethal to win our Nation's wars and come home safely. CCDC is a major subordinate command of the U.S. Army Futures Command.