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Multi-functional Integrated Drive System Sensor (MIDSS) for Rotorcraft


OBJECTIVE: The objective of this SBIR is to develop a Multi-functional Integrated Drive System Sensor (MIDSS) capable of measuring multiple parameters critical to the operation and health of a rotorcraft drive train. DESCRIPTION: This effort will develop a MIDSS capable of measuring strain, vibration, torque and temperature at multiple locations. The ability to provide complete measurement capability for an entire gearbox or set of shafts is desired. The MIDSS measurements should be of sufficient accuracy and sampling rates for monitoring of normal drive-train function, detecting and quantifying over-speed or over-torque conditions, and use in calculation of advanced drive train health indicators. The MIDSS needs to be capable of interface to cockpit displays as well as being fed to on-board monitoring systems. The effort should address the sensor requirements such as accuracy and resolution, networking or multiplexing capacity, reliability and fault tolerance. Oil debris or quality sensors would be difficult to incorporate within the system and are not required as part of the effort. Other desired attributes to consider for Phase III are (1) impact per Mil-Std 810F, Method 516.5; (2) vibration requirements of Mil-Std 810F, Method 514.5; (3) acceleration per Mil-Std 810F, Method 513.5; (4) altitude per Mil-Std 810F, Method 500.4; (5) rain per Mil-Std 810F, Method 506.4; (6) fungus per Mil-Std 810F, Method 508.5; (7) humidity per Mil-Std 810F, Method 507.4; (8) salt spry/fog per Mil-Std 810F, Method 509.4; (9) sand/dust per Mil-Std 810F, Method 510.4; (10) fluid susceptibility per Mil-Std 810F, Method 504; and (11) electromagnetic interference (EMI) per Mil-Std 461E as modified by ADS-37A-PRF Table 1. PHASE I: Phase I of the effort will prove the feasibility of the proposed technology approach. Phase I will develop the technology sufficiently to prove the ability to integrate the required measurement capabilities and implement a MIDSS. The effort should address the monitoring requirements for a representative drive system component. The technical viability of the various sensors, as well as any associated digitization and multiplexing should be demonstrated at a bench test level. The source of data needed for the selected drive system component as well as any performance, usage or diagnostics models should be addressed. An aircraft level architecture and a roadmap for implementation should be defined under this phase. The architecture must address integration with existing aircraft Health and Usage Monitoring Systems (HUMS). PHASE II: Phase II will develop the Phase I technology into a fully functional prototype. The MIDSS will be tested to assess the accuracy of the measurement capabilities as well as an aircraft level architecture. Individual sensor testing will be conducted along with the ability to combine multiple sensor locations covering the entire aircraft drive system. PHASE III: The technology is applicable to both military and commercial rotary wing aircraft (qualified to military standards listed in description) to monitor components and performance in real time. This technology will be used on high value and flight safety critical drive system components. The MIDSS will alert the user to component(s) stressed beyond their intended boundaries. The reduction of the wire weight and number of sensors will prove to be very beneficial. As this technology matures it can be transitioned to non-aircraft applications such as gearboxes used in the wind energy industry.
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