Low Cost Method of Manufacturing Cooled Axisymmetric Scramjets
Scramjet engine developers are working on advanced axisymmetric engine concepts that may not be feasible due to limitations of currently available manufacturing methods. The primary goal of this SBIR is to make available a new technology that will make it feasible to manufacture small diameter one-piece cooled axisymmetric scramjet combustors.
The availability of the proposed technology will result in scramjet program cost savings and engine design improvements and a strong near term technology commercialization is likely. In fact, scramjet developers have expressed that there is no other known means of manufacturing some of the most desired axisymmetric combustor designs.
Although Ormond, LLC currently manufactures scramjet engine panels using a novel abrasivejet machining process and software that is available nowhere else in industry, new engine developments have created the need for key technology advancements.
A principal advantage of the proposed technology is that it can generate small high-aspect-ratio channels in nearly any material, and is now used to machine the complex cooling flow field patterns found in the Inconel scramjet heat exchanger circuits. There are technical and economic benefits over all of the existing manufacturing methods because it is a cold, non-chemical low-mechanical load process that has no affect on workpiece material crystal structure.
Developments that will be made under this SBIR are: 1.) miniaturization of the specialized cutting head to fit in the axisymmetric combustor, 2.) development of a new numerical model and software needed to implement the process, and 3.) development of an appropriate long reach manipulator arm and control software to provide appropriate tool motion in the combustor cylinder. The Phase I program will initiate the development and demonstrate feasibility of the proposed technology.
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