Improving the Performance of Navy Helicopter Masts by Using Corrosion-Resistant, Ultra-High-Strength Steel

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-09-C-0215
Agency Tracking Number: N091-031-0330
Amount: $149,934.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: N091-031
Solicitation Number: 2009.1
Solicitation Year: 2009
Award Year: 2009
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2009-04-20
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2011-03-10
Small Business Information
1820 Ridge Avenue, Evanston, IL, 60201
DUNS: 088176961
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 James Wright
 Director - Product Develo
 (847) 425-8225
Business Contact
 Raymond Genellie Junior
Title: Director - Product Develo
Phone: (847) 425-8211
Research Institution
QuesTek will evaluate the feasibility of using Ferrium S53® as the main rotor shaft mast material in Navy helicopters to eliminate the need for toxic cadmium plating, reduce weight and increase toughness (durability), fatigue resistance, general corrosion resistance and SCC resistance. The alloys currently used for Navy helicopter masts (such as 4340 or 9310) provide high strength but offer limited corrosion resistance, and are typically coated (and re-coated during overhaul) with toxic cadmium plating. S53 is a new ultra-high-strength, corrosion-resistant steel developed by QuesTek with its proprietary Materials by Design® development process. S53 is commercially available from two U.S.-based suppliers and has received industry certifications, including SAE (AMS5922) and MMPDS approvals. In applying S53 to rotorshaft masts, QuesTek will specifically investigate processes to harden the surface of S53 shafts above 54 Rockwell C, to accommodate gears, splines, bearings and other hard contact points. QuesTek will also develop additional design data to describe the frictional characteristics of S53 (such as galling and fretting data) to facilitate the design of the contact point and power transmission portions of the rotor shaft mast. The project will also assess the ability of S53 to meet its expected environmental exposure design requirements.

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

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