Enhanced Bondline Inspection Using Computed Tomography (CT) for Solid Rocket Motor Aging and Surveillance

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA9300-10-C-2102
Agency Tracking Number: F071-203-0122
Amount: $735,179.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solitcitation Year: 2007
Solitcitation Topic Code: AF071-203
Solitcitation Number: 2007.1
Small Business Information
Lickenbrock Technologies LLC
4041 Forest Park Ave., St. Louis, MO, -
Duns: 176142693
Hubzone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Timothy Holmes
 Chief Executive Officer
 (314) 615-6921
 holmes@lickenbrock.com
Business Contact
 Maria Holmes
Title: Chief Financial Officer
Phone: (314) 615-6922
Email: maria@lickenbrock.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
X-ray computed tomography (CT) is used to evaluate the integrity and aging of solid rocket motors (SRM) used in missile defense. There is a need for better vizualization of bondlines of materials, and the detection of their flaws, in the dome region. This problem is due to partial volume effects inherent in all CT instruments. This project will develop and investigate algorithms and computer programs that compensate for these problems. At the core of the approach is a deconvolution algorithm that improves 3D image resolution along the axial dimension. The Phase II project will include the following work: (1) Further development of resolution-improvement (deconvolution) algorithms, (2), testing with computer simulations, an SRM analog phantom and real SRM data, (3), algorithms for visualizing dual-energy images, using both 9 and 15 MeV sources, (4), development of algorithms that correct for practical data collection imperfections that corrupt images in the forward dome,(5), installation of a prototype software/computer system at the Air Force CT Facility to serve as a testbed for field testing and feedback from users, and (6), implementation and installation of changes to the software following this feedback. BENEFIT: There are many industrial applications for X-ray CT, including the inspection of large aircraft and automobile components. Several companies, including BIR, Inc. and Carl Zeiss IMT Corp., sell X-ray CT scanners for these industries. The software may be configured as an add-on component to these products.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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