Mines News

Release Date Wednesday, September 15, 2021

South Dakota Mines Wins $11.2 Million Grant for DoD Cold Regions Research


Members of CRREL, ERDC, and South Dakota Mines technical leads met with Mines researchers on campus as part of a collaboration that assists the DoD in developing new materials and manufacturing processes in cold areas of the world. Photo by Joseph Bara.  


South Dakota Mines is partnering with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Engineer Research and Development Center’s Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL) on a new project called “Materials and Manufacturing for Cold Regions.” The effort includes a five-year, $11.2 million grant to fund faculty and student research at Mines from multiple engineering and science disciplines. The team will develop advanced materials and manufacturing technology in support of the U.S. Army’s global military objectives in cold and remote regions.

Cold Weather research 2 CRREL solves interdisciplinary and strategically important challenges for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Army, Department of Defense (DoD) and the nation by advancing and applying science and engineering to complex environments, materials and processes in all seasons and climates, with unique core competencies related to the Earth’s cold regions.

“We are delighted to partner with CRREL,” says Dr. Grant Crawford, professor of materials and metallurgical engineering at South Dakota Mines. “Through this partnership we will apply materials and manufacturing research expertise and infrastructure, developed over the past two decades by numerous Mines faculty, staff and students, to support the critical needs of our nation’s armed forces. It’s a perfect opportunity for us and we look forward to the new partnership.” Crawford says.

Mines faculty and students will focus on three main research areas in support of CRREL.

Advanced Materials: This includes lightweight composites that offer thermal insulation and low temperature ballistics capability to support armor for soldiers, equipment, vehicles and structures. This also includes multifunctional shape memory materials that can be used for damage tolerant devices and energy harvesting in cold environments.

Advanced Repair and Manufacturing Technologies: This includes friction stir welding/processing and cold spray technologies that can be used to repair broken parts and produce lightweight structures in cold regions.

Advanced Coatings: This includes both thick and thin film coatings that offer advanced wear and corrosion resistance, anti-icing capability, and are tailored for use in earths cold regions to extend the lifetime of equipment, structures and devices.

Mines faculty and researchers involved in the project include Dr. Grant Crawford, Dr. David Salem, Dr. Bharat Jasthi, Dr. Nick Bruno, Dr. Forest Thompson, Dr. Satish Bhattiprolu, Dr. Leila Sorkhi, Joshua Hammell, Todd Curtis, Michael Carter and James Tomich. Thirteen members of CRREL and the Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) joined Mines researchers for a meeting on the Mines campus in August. 

For more on this issue, please see this press release from U.S. Senator Mike Rounds office. 


About South Dakota Mines  

Founded in 1885, South Dakota Mines is one of the nation’s leading engineering, science and technology universities. South Dakota Mines offers bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees and a best-in-class education at an affordable price. The university enrolls 2,493 students with an average class size of 24. The South Dakota Mines placement rate for graduates is 98 percent, with an average starting salary of more than $70,036. For these reasons  South Dakota Mines is ranked among the best engineering schools in the country for return on investment. Find us online at www.sdsmt.edu and on FacebookTwitter, LinkedInInstagram, and Snapchat.

Contact: Mike Ray, 605-394-6082, mike.ray@sdsmt.edu

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