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NEWS | April 4, 2024

2M/MTR program enhances Navy readiness through self-sufficiency, cost savings

By Frank Kaminski, Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Keyport NUWC Division, Keyport

Naval Sea Systems Command’s Miniature/Micro-Miniature Module Test and Repair program plays a crucial role in ensuring Navy fleet readiness through its innovative solutions for electronic component repair and maintenance.

The program, part of Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division, Keyport’s Fleet Technical Support Division, is strategically located within St. Juliens Creek Annex, Portsmouth, Virginia, a small support facility near both Norfolk Naval Shipyard and the U.S. Fleet Forces Command headquarters. The 2M/MTR team of 20 electronics technicians, engineers, logisticians and program managers operates from a single office building and two storage facilities.

For most of its 27-year history, 2M/MTR was dually aligned with NUWC Division, Newport and Naval Surface Warfare Center Division, Crane, but last October it was realigned to NUWC Division, Keyport. Nearly a year and a half into this realignment, the program has integrated well into its new command, largely due to their shared focus on fleet support and in-service engineering, according to 2M/MTR Technical Project Manager and Task Manager Mike Bruzan.

The program provides repair capabilities for circuit card assemblies and electronic modules on surface ships, aircraft carriers and other Navy platforms. It provides Sailors and Marines with specialized workstations containing diagnostic tools and equipment needed to efficiently troubleshoot and repair components. Enabling them to do these repairs in-house eliminates the need for external technicians or depot-level repairs, reducing maintenance costs and minimizing downtime.

“The program is designed to give the Sailors aboard every ship in the Navy the ability to troubleshoot and repair circuit cards using diagnostic test equipment and proven miniature/micro-miniature repair capability,” said 2M/MTR Program Coordinator Scott Doherty. “The equipment we provide to the ships is the cornerstone of their ability to troubleshoot and effectively make repairs.”

Currently, more than 300 vessels and shore locations are equipped with 2M/MTR stations, each consisting of a workbench, diagnostic equipment and a full suite of miniature/micro-miniature repair tools. Most vessels have one station, but aircraft carriers have four due to their larger size and operational demands.

Each station has a set of color-coded disks containing test routines and procedures. There is a gold disk with nearly 8,000 test routines for fault-isolating a wide range of electronic components, a blue disk with the MTR software suite, and a purple disk housing a test routine directory.

2M/MTR creates the disks, validates the test routines, maintains the equipment, answers technical questions, and provides technical support to Sailors and Marines using 2M/MTR stations both at sea and on shore, said Doherty.

The program currently saves the Navy about $34 million annually, with total cumulative savings exceeding $900 million and projected to reach $1 billion within the next few years. It does so by streamlining logistics, reducing reliance on replacement parts and preventing functional parts from being discarded unnecessarily, said Springs.

Sailors and Marines who achieve significant cost savings through their use of 2M/MTR equipment are eligible for recognition and monetary awards through the Chief of Naval Operations’ quarterly Gold Disk Award program. Awards range from $2,000 to $5,000, depending on the level of cost savings realized. Award recipients also receive a letter of commendation from the Deputy CNO, Integration of Capabilities & Resources.

2M/MTR also provides schoolhouse trainings, including soldering courses covering both through-hole and surface mount components, classes on MTR troubleshooting with test routines, and 2M/MTR instructor and inspector certifications, said Bruzan.

Through ongoing promotion and outreach efforts, the 2M/MTR team continually seeks to expand the Navy’s use of its workstations, disks and test routines. Obstacles to wider adoption include a preference among some commands for replacement over repair, competition from performance-based logistics systems and a lack of awareness about 2M/MTR’s benefits, said Springs and Bruzan.

"People forget that there's an organic repair capability we offer that's available in the fleet at a high level—a depot level," said Bruzan. “What a lot of the folks in the program will tell you is that people don't come to us until something’s already been a problem for a while and they can't think of another way to fix it. And the same thing can happen when you're underway or in harm's way.”

Bruzan added that he and other 2M/MTR personnel attend conferences largely as a way of raising awareness about the program. “We let everyone know, ‘You can be self-sustaining if you just embrace what we give you,’” he said. “These are low-cost test systems and test routines, and the training doesn't take that long for the technicians.”


NUWC Division, Keyport provides advanced technical capabilities for test and evaluation, in-service engineering, maintenance and industrial base support, fleet material readiness, and obsolescence management for undersea warfare to expand America’s undersea dominance.