Innovative Lightweight Onboard Aerodynamic Palliatives for Helicopter Brownout Dust Abatement

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-08-M-1387
Agency Tracking Number: F081-078-0535
Amount: $99,997.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2008
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: AF081-078
Solicitation Number: 2008.1
Small Business Information
34 Lexington Avenue, Ewing, NJ, 08618
DUNS: 096857313
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Glen Whitehouse
 (609) 538-0444
Business Contact
 Barbara Agans
Title: Director, Business Administration
Phone: (609) 538-0444
Research Institution
Rotorcraft brownout, which is caused by the entrainment of dust and ground debris by the rotorwash during take-off and landing, is a critical operational problem, and has caused a significant number of military helicopter accidents in Iraq and Afghanistan. Brownout affects safe operations due to the reduction of visibility, in addition to damaging engine components and rotor blades. Recent experience gained from operations in brownout with a variety of rotorcraft configurations, as well as ongoing work with validated analyses, indicates that aerodynamic modifications to the aircraft may offer a true solution to the brownout problem, at least in terms of pilot visibility. Therefore, the effort proposed herein seeks to develop innovative lightweight onboard aerodynamic solutions to brownout that can be retrofitted to current rotorcraft and incorporated into future designs without degrading performance or requiring additional onboard equipment or consumables. This effort will leverage work for the US Army developing physics-based analysis tools for the engineering simulation of rotorcraft brownout conditions and expertise in rotorcraft aerodynamic design, testing and performance analysis, to demonstrate that lightweight active aerodynamic solutions to brownout are not only viable, but also practical and cost effective without posing a risk to performance, operations or personnel.

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

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