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Installing water leak sensors in west Fort Hood
While installing water leak sensors in west Fort Hood, the Corps of Engineers overcame numerous map errors to find the pipes. Pictured is a 50-foot trench that successfully yielded a water pipe. Photo courtesy of Army Corps of Engineers.

On the Road with the Corps

Army Experts Brave Hostile Habitat to Detect Water Leaks

By Cynthia Greenwood

When two experts travel to Fort Hood Army Base to collect data from a new water leak detection system for the Army Corps of Engineers, they brace themselves for a bumpy ride. West Fort Hood is hilly and desolate, and ranchers are even permitted to graze cattle on this Central Texas scrubland where Apache and Kiowa Indian tribes once roamed.

Occupying 217,337 acres between Austin and Waco, Fort Hood is the largest American Army base, and once laid claim to being the largest base in the free world before the Soviet Union dissolved. The base is unique, hosting two major divisions that include the 1st Cavalry Division—deployed to Iraq in 2004—and the celebrated 4th Infantry Division that captured Saddam Hussein in 2003.

During a June 6 visit physicist John Carlyle and materials engineer Sean Morefield regretted not having a four-wheel drive. Carlyle's rented 2006 Chevrolet Impala was getting severely scratched and gouged by underbrush as he drove Morefield and a DoD reporter across dirt and juniper-covered swaths of west Fort Hood to inspect a series of sensors that monitor water leaks in the base potable water system.

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Top Story


Army Uses Smart Technology to Fight Corrosion
at Fort Bragg

By Gretchen Jacobson

North Carolina's Fort Bragg, one of the largest and busiest military complexes in the world, houses and trains nearly 10% of the Army's active component forces. Widely known as the "Home of the Airborne and Special Operations Forces," the 88-year-old fort supports the most intensive and varied training program in the continental United States. Millions of personnel days are dedicated to training each year using aircraft, tactical vehicles, and equipment to prepare and ready military units for deployment.

The inlet pipe at Fort Bragg's Central Vehicle Wash Facility
The inlet pipe at Fort Bragg's Central Vehicle Wash Facility has severe coating degradation, which is being mitigated with a combination of fluorescent and self-healing coatings. Photo courtesy of Army Corps of Engineers.

The vehicles used for maneuvers in the field require diligent maintenance to protect them from such hostile elements as heat, humidity, mud, sand, and swamp water. Following the training exercises, each vehicle must be cleaned and decontaminated to prevent corrosion and ensure long-term dependability. The undersides of the vehicles, often caked in mud, are particularly susceptible to corrosion.

A crucial component of Fort Bragg's vehicle maintenance system is its Central Vehicle Wash Facility (CVWF). Most army installations have one or more CVWFs to provide rapid and economical cleaning of tactical vehicles.

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Corrosion Office Expert
Offers Tips on DoD Project Selection

Calculating Your Return
on Investment



Table of Contents


Volume 2, Number 2
Summer 2006

Top Stories

On the Road with the Corps:
Army Experts Brave Hostile Habitat to Detect Water Leaks

Army Uses Smart Technology to Fight Corrosion at Fort Bragg

Portrait of Steve Spadafora: DoD Corrosion Team Leader

Corrosion Office Expert Offers Tips on DoD Project Selection

Calculating Your Return on Investment

Project News

Top-Flight Army Hospital Benefits from Green Chemical Treatment

Remote-Monitoring Protects Water Facilities at Two Army Bases

DoD News

NACE President Addresses Army Summit

DoD Creates Corrosion Education Consortium

DoD Corrosion Exchange Unveils Project Database

Technology News

Storage Testing Ensures Cargo Loader is War-Ready

Researchers Aim to Redesign
EA-6B "Prowler"

ONR Faculty Researcher Tests Marine Aluminum Alloys

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