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SBIR Phase I: Research on an energy harvesting system for the development of a self-sustainable, blue-tooth, low energy tracking and monitoring sensor for aircraft

Award Information
Agency: National Science Foundation
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2136567
Agency Tracking Number: 2136567
Amount: $255,743.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: I
Solicitation Number: NSF 21-562
Solicitation Year: 2021
Award Year: 2022
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2022-02-01
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2023-01-31
Small Business Information
7120 SW 47TH ST
MIAMI, FL 33155
United States
DUNS: 081277882
HUBZone Owned: No
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Maria-esther Martinez-barreiro
 (305) 987-0102
Business Contact
 Maria-esther Martinez-barreiro
Phone: (305) 987-0102
Research Institution

The broader impact/commercial potential of this Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project is to develop a novel, self-sustaining, real-time asset tracking technology that addresses the aviation industry’s need for efficiency and safety. This technology will provide automated safety and emergency equipment compliance and security seal checks, significantly reducing the time required for audits, while increasing their accuracy and avoiding potential liability claims from undetected failure or tampering with safety equipment. Based on in-flight compliant Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) communication, equipment can be monitored continuously, during flight and on the ground, using a compact communication hub or mobile devices. Self-sustainability is achieved by harvesting energy from mechanical vibrations present in-flight and during taxiing, without requiring time-consuming battery change cycles and avoiding regulatory challenges for hazardous battery chemistries such as lithium-ion. The proposed research will also enable in-flight monitoring applications and automate new tasks such as ensuring compliance with in-flight seatbelt regulations. The proposed system will help passenger airlines stay profitable in a highly competitive market, realizing significant cost-savings through efficient operations, reduced turnaround times, and lower maintenance overheads.This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project aims to evaluate a mechanical energy harvesting design regarding its technical feasibility and effectiveness as a power source for asset tracking devices onboard an aircraft. To this end, new technologies for mechanical energy harvesting will be tested: (1) a novel stacked piezoelectric device with tunable resonance frequencies and output enhanced by superposition among different piezo-elements vibrating in phase and (2) a mechanical vibration amplifier which extracts large-amplitude linear motions from vibrations to enhance the amplitude of mechanical movements. The two new technologies may enable the first mechanical vibration harvester which is compact enough to permit effective use in asset tracking in the aviation industry, resulting in an energy harvesting module miniaturized to comply with aviation applications and to efficiently harvest the extremely low frequencies ( less than 10 Hz) dominating cabin vibrations. The energy harvesting circuit prototype will be evaluated under realistic deployment conditions within the scope of this project and integrated in BLE-sensor prototypes to further evaluate its performance.This award reflects NSF's statutory mission and has been deemed worthy of support through evaluation using the Foundation's intellectual merit and broader impacts review criteria.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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