Rotary Wing Dynamic Component Structural Life Tracking with Self-Powered Wireless Sensors
Agency / Branch:
DOD / NAVY
The embedded rotor load monitoring system developed under this SBIR project principally consists of Smart Rod Ends and a wireless base station. The Smart Rod Ends are conventional push rod ends that have an energy harvester powered wireless sensor system built into the shank of the rod end. The base station connects to a Prognostic and Health Monitoring Unit (PHMU) located within the existing HUMS Integrated Vehicle Health Monitoring Unit (IVHMU). The Smart Rod End does not require any other modification of the rotor assembly or HUMS and it provides fully autonomous functionality because it harvests energy locally at the rod end to power the sensor system. Robust Radio Frequency (RF) communication is used to transmit the load data from the rod ends to the wireless base station. Pitch link loads monitoring and complimentary rotor loads models provide identification and quantification of structural damage to key rotor components leading to accurate evaluation of remaining useful life. Component inspections and replacement can then be triggered on condition rather than by calculated life and costly periodic inspections. On condition inspection and replacement will reduce maintenance costs and increase aircraft availability.
Small Business Information at Submission:
KCF Technologies, Inc
336 South Fraser Street State College, PA -
Number of Employees: