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Thermal Flux Data Collection Instrument and Data Processing Methods for Concentrated Radiant Energy Beam Target Surface Thermal Exposure Characterizations


OUSD (R&E) CRITICAL TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Trusted AI and Autonomy; Directed Energy The technology within this topic is restricted under the International Traffic in Arms Regulation (ITAR), 22 CFR Parts 120-130, which controls the export and import of defense-related material and services, including export of sensitive technical data, or the Export Administration Regulation (EAR), 15 CFR Parts 730-774, which controls dual use items. Applicants must disclose any proposed use of foreign nationals (FNs), their country(ies) of origin, the type of visa or work permit possessed, and the statement of work (SOW) tasks intended for accomplishment by the FN(s) in accordance with the Announcement. Applicants are advised foreign nationals proposed to perform on this topic may be restricted due to the technical data under US Export Control Laws. OBJECTIVE: This SBIR technology development request is intended to further advance thermal flux data collection methods for applications in characterizing thermal flux profiles on concentrated radiant energy beam targets. DESCRIPTION: diverse thermal effects on thermally exposed test asset surfaces. The currently used concentrated radiant energy beam has a peak irradiance of 350 W/cm2 over an approximate 1 m diameter target area. The area of interest on target is an approximate 4 inch square test asset. Although Infrared (IR) cameras can be used to characterize concentrated radiant energy beam incident temperature distributions over the target surface, test equipment configuration can constrain IR camera positioning and consequently limit heat flux profile image quality over the area of interest. Relevant IR camera temperature range and accuracy specifications are provided below for reference. • Range –20 to 120°C (–4 to 248°F): o –20 to 100°C (–4 to 212°F), o accuracy ±2°C (±3.6°F) o 100 to 120°C (212 to 248°F), o accuracy ±2% • Range 0 to 650°C (32 to 1202°F): o 0 to 100°C (32 to 212°F), o accuracy ±2°C (±3.6°F) o 100 to 650°C (212 to 1202°F), o accuracy ±2% • Range 300 to 2000°C (572 to 3632°F): o accuracy ±2% Flux gages can also be used for collecting target area flux data. Although it is possible to recreate a flux distribution from flux gage data through the use of computational methods, the number of flux gages used, and their position relative to the test asset, do not provide sufficient data points to recreate a high resolution heat flux profile over the area of interest. Software tools for recreating detailed flux profiles from flux gage data have also not been formally developed. The development of a new technology for collecting high resolution thermal flux data over an approximate 4 inch square exposed to a maximum of 350 W/cm2 is requested. The technology must not interfere with the radiant energy beam, and should provide a resolution equivalent to, or reasonably near to, the listed relevant IR camera accuracy for the given ranges. Flux data points must be collected at a maximum spacing of 0.5 inch radius between each data collection point within and encompassing the 4 inch square area of interest. If additional data processing methods are required for obtaining a complete usable flux profile data set, the processing methods or accompanying software tools must be provided. Any processing procedures, algorithms, numerical methods applications, or related computational processes should also be included within the proposed technology documentation where applicable. PHASE I: This is a D2P2 topic, and as such, no Phase I awards will be made. Applicants must demonstrate completion of a "Phase I-type" effort, and the proposed technology must be validated through sufficient studies and feasibility assessments. The studies will be documented in a report detailing theory behind the technology, and an analysis of alternative solutions within the scope of the presented theory. A rational for the selected concept must be Included in an analysis of applicable alternative solutions. A prototype and preliminary experimental data with included analyses are favorable and should be included as part of the feasibility assessment. A technology development plan and a detailed technology verification plan referencing the theory and proof of concept design will be composed and reviewed as part of this phase. If the technology includes the use of computational methods and software tool developments, a software development plan should also be composed in phase I. PHASE II: A rationale for the selected concept must be included in an analysis of applicable alternative solutions. A prototype and preliminary experimental data with included analyses are favorable and should be included in the final deliverable. The development will include procurement of test assets, instrumentation, and any accompanying software tools. Development will also include testing as necessary for verifying milestone criteria in the development plan has been reached. PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Phase III will include full system testing of the technology. The technology will be tested under operational conditions. Data fidelity will be assessed under criteria agreed upon in the phase I verification plan. The collected data a system performance will also inform analyses for possible diverging application of the technology. Such application include but may not be limited to rocket engine wall heat flux data collection and analysis methods, concentrated solar renewable energy solar beam receiver flux characterizations, and laboratory applications in high capacity thermal source data collection. REFERENCES: 1. R. D. Neumann, “Thermal Instrumentation A State-of-the-art Review,” WPAFB/AFMC Wright Laboratory Aerospace Propulsion & Power Directorate Technical Report WL-TR-96-2107, December 1993, The University of Dayton Research Institute, Dayton, OH, KEYWORDS: Data collection; Data processing; Instrumentation; Thermal Flux; Heat Transfer; Infrared; Concentrated Solar; Materials; Software; Computation; Sensors; Directed Energy
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