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TPI Composites General Manager Kevin Weldi poses with the new Humvee  (Source: Associated Press)
New composite Humvees shed 900 pounds of weight

Humvees are synonymous with transporting troops on the ground during times of war. The ubiquitous workhorses are also pretty lacking when it comes to protection from enemy fire and improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

The U.S. Army in conjunction with AM General Corp. and TPI Composites Inc. are looking to composite materials to give its soldiers a better chance at surviving treacherous working conditions on Iraq.

Its latest test bed is a Humvee that features a frame and body made of composite materials. Resin material is used to bond together balsa wood, carbon reinforcements, fiberglass and foam. The use of composite materials on the Humvee shaves 900 pounds off the usual 10,000 to 12,000 pound vehicle weight.

"We can put the strength where we need it," said TPI Composites CEO Steven Lockard. "Every pound of weight we save, that weight is being added back to the vehicle in armor and mine-blast protection."

Additional armor could be placed under and around the cabin area of the Humvee to protect the passengers, while the composites materials alone could be used for the hood and fenders.

Predictably, the new composite-bodied Humvees are slightly more expensive than their conventional counterparts and the Army still hasn't made a firm commitment to purchasing the vehicles.

With that said, TPI Composites is fully prepared should the Army give the company the green light. "We could ramp up pretty quickly to most any volume that would be desired," said Lockard.



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RE: Awesome
By sinful on 9/22/2007 1:32:03 PM , Rating: 2
Deficit spending decreasing? Are you joking??
That's so factually wrong it is amazing!

Deficit spending is when you have low taxes, and spend more money than what is coming in (via taxes).

Clinton, a democrat, had (relatively) high taxes, and relatively low spending. As a result, the deficit was being reduced.
Bush, a republican, lowered taxes, and got involved in the Iraq war, resulting in EXTREMELY high spending.

Indeed, deficit spending is currently at RECORD levels, and shows no sign of slowing down.
(See: http://www.federalbudget.com/)

The only thing that would remotely bring this in to line is to end the $7Billion/MONTH war in Iraq and raise taxes.

The republicans want to do neither, and the democrats will (probably) try to do both.

Secondly, I don't know where you get this idea that European countries are worse off; Unlike the US, they have relatively high taxes and low spending, and don't have trillions of dollars in national debt.

Secondly, this 'surplus spending' thing you mention, I presume you meant 'surplus savings', because what you said doesn't make sense.
Finally, the situation of suprlus savings is so far out of reach that it won't be an issue anytime within our lifetime.
Our national debt is in the trillions of dollars, and the interest on that national debt is in the hundreds of billions per year.

In simple terms, it's like having a credit card with $10,000 in debt on it already, spending $1000/month on it, getting charged an interest fee of $1000/month, and then making a payment of $200.
The "break even" point, even if we had a surplus (which we don't), is decades away.

I believe when we actually had a RECORD budget SURPLUS (under Clinton), it was going to be like 30 years or so to pay it all down.
That was before Bush added a few trillion dollars to the national debt.


"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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