On-Orbit Health Monitoring and Repair Assessment of Thermal Protection Systems
This SBIR project delivers On-orbit health MoNItoring and repair assessment of THERMal protection systems (OMNI_THERM). OMNI_THERM features impedance-based structural health monitoring (SHM) and uses miniaturized autonomous sensor/actuators to diagnose damage and verify repair efficacy. Implications of the innovationThermal protection systems (TPS) are crucial for crew safety. New techniques of on-orbit assessment of TPS are needed to accelerate Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) development. An autonomous impedance-based SHM system is one of the few viable solutions; Phase I established that this technique can be configured for on-orbit TPS health monitoring. Technical objectivesWe will configure OMNI_THERM for on-orbit SHM through iterative hardware refinements combined with environmental testing and demonstrations at CEV contractors. OMNI_THERM deploys autonomous, wireless, self-powered sensor/actuators. Each sensor/actuator is a self-contained SHM system; this computationally distributed framework minimizes single points-of-failure. Research descriptionPhase I produced an advanced prototype and demonstrated SHM on TPS. Phase II includes miniaturization and expands to higher temperature ranges, hybrid structures, and advanced composites. Anticipated resultsPhase II delivers an OMNI_THERM system configured for on-orbit SHM and repair assessment of TPS and other crucial structures. System development includes ruggedization, scaling to multiple sensors, self-diagnostics, high tem
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Extreme Diagnostics, Inc.
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