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Portable High Resolution Imaging for NDI of Hot Section Aero Turbine Components

Award Information

Department of Defense
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2006 / STTR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Radiation Monitoring Devices, Inc.
44 Hunt St. Watertown, MA 02472-4699
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2006
Title: Portable High Resolution Imaging for NDI of Hot Section Aero Turbine Components
Agency / Branch: DOD / NAVY
Contract: N00014-06-M-0289
Award Amount: $69,999.00


New technology is needed for the nondestructive evaluation (NDE) of defects in gas turbine engines. While these defects adversely affect hot-section performance and reduce component life, they are difficult to detect and characterize without destructive inspection. The lack of detailed flaw detection and characterization raises safety concerns, hampers fleet readiness and negatively impacts the life of hot section components. RMD, in collaboration with the Electrical Engineering Department at Northeastern University, proposes a new NDE technology based on high resolution, 3-D imaging of eddy currents induced in coated metallic jet engine components to characterize microscopic cracks, coating degradation, cooling hole blockage and other defects. A portable high resolution camera for magnetic fields will be developed based on a 2-D array of densely packed, micron-wide, tunneling magnetoresistive (TMR) sensors combined with a proprietary flux to field converter. With sensitivity nearly 1 billion times better than the coils now used as eddy current sensors, the NDE camera will be used to detect and map the dimensions and positions of microscopic defects in the metal. RMD and NEU have broad experience in TMR sensor development, flux to field converter design, model based design and NDE system development and manufacture. BENEFITS: The result of a successful Phase I/Phase II program will be an affordable new NDE/NDI imaging technology for characterizing defects in jet engine components. A simple test procedure that requires little operator training will yield images of defects such as small cracks, casting defects and coating properties that can be analyzed in a rapid and intuitive manner. The system will be highly portable, low power and readily repairable. DOD markets include NDE for jet engines; space vehicles; transport vehicles and infrastructure. Other applications include battlefield applications, covert perimeter sensors and active feedback of electro-mechanical systems. Commercial applications range from biomedical sensors, to machine vision systems for manufacturing process control and quality assurance.

Principal Investigator:

Timothy Tiernan
Group Leader

Business Contact:

Gerald Entine
Small Business Information at Submission:

44 Hunt Street Watertown, MA 02472

EIN/Tax ID: 042546395
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Research Institution Information:
409 Dana Research Center NEU,
Boston, MA 02115
Contact: Nian Sun
Contact Phone: (617) 373-4159
RI Type: Nonprofit college or university