Page 19

Frontiers September 2013 Issue

NASCAR auto racing teams, MSI’s world-class technicians can build, test and deliver these machines for the warfighter immediately, to fill this gap in the special operations community.” In June, MSI moved to a larger facility in Mooresville, N.C., where Phantom Badger will be produced. Assembly of commercial components such as the engine, transmission and differentials will be performed there, as well as fabrication of the mission modules. “It’s mind-boggling to think that this vehicle was just a drawing on a computer screen six months ago,” said Wyatt Montgomery, lead mechanic for MSI Defense Solutions. “Boeing’s vision of Phantom Badger got this thing rolling, and our team of engineers, fabricators, mechanics and suppliers bent over backward to make it happen. Our nation’s most elite forces had great ideas and suggestions for creature comforts, which we’ve also incorporated.” Andrew Wizorek, MSI’s design engineer and program manager for Phantom Badger, said his career in NASCAR engineering has paid big dividends when it comes to fine-tuning Phantom Badger and meeting the tight requirements for cramming so much capability into the 5-foot-wide (1.5-meter) cargo hold of a V-22. “My experiences at Joe Gibbs Racing provided me the knowledge and skills for suspension tuning that I use today on Phantom Badger,” Wizorek said. “To fit in the V-22, we have very little room to package all of the subsystems. Even more challenging, we had to design each individual component for commonality and easy maintenance.” Montgomery, too, has years of experience working in a variety of jobs for many of the top teams in NASCAR. “This project has no victory lane at the end,” he said of Phantom Badger. “It will be a silent win because I’m confident that in some god-awful place in this world, there will be a team of special operations forces relying on Phantom Badger to pull them through.” n PHOTOS: (Clockwise from far left) From MSI Defense Solutions: garrett.d.kasper@boeing.com Andrew Wizorek demonstrates how Phantom Badger’s litter module allows a medic easy access to wounded warfighters; lead mechanic Wyatt Montgomery, left, and Wizorek fine-tune a turbocharger, which allows the Phantom Badger to reach high speeds; mechanics Linden Barnicle, from left, Paul Silvestri and Montgomery assemble a turret mount on one of Phantom Badger’s various mission modules; Montgomery, left, and Wizorek demonstrate Phantom Badger’s four-wheel-drive capability; Silvestri works on the vehicle’s engine. BEIO NG FRONTEIRS / SEPTEMBER 2013 19


Frontiers September 2013 Issue
To see the actual publication please follow the link above