Manual removal of small felt pieces in projectile components has helped prevent delays during automated destruction processes at the Pueblo Chemical Agent-Destruction Pilot Plant.
“The bursters have on the ends of them little pieces of felt that sometimes get stuck,” said John McCabe, ordnance technician, PCAPP. “We have to remove them so that when it goes through the Munitions Washout System, they don’t interfere with the operation of that system and clog it up.”
Before the mustard agent contained within projectiles can be drained, their energetic components must be removed in an automated disassembly process. Sometimes, small pieces of felt are left behind when the burster is removed. These felt pieces could pose problems during the next step of the destruction process, when agent is drained from the projectile.
The felt pieces, approximately the size of a dime, are manually removed by ordnance technicians before entering the MWS.
“We check the burster well to make sure there are no felts left over,” McCabe said. “We use the flashlights afterwards, just to double-check and make sure we get them all.”