Adaptive Magnetorheological Isolator for Ground Support Equipment

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX08CD44P
Agency Tracking Number: 070075
Amount: $99,998.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Awards Year: 2008
Solicitation Year: 2007
Solicitation Topic Code: T6.02
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
11750 Beltsville Drive, Suite 300, Beltsville, MD, 20705-4044
DUNS: 061997029
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Gregory Hiemenz
 Principal Investigator
 () -
Business Contact
 Amy Hizoune
Title: Business Official
Phone: (240) 790-0609
Research Institution
 University of Maryland
 Not Available
 ORAA/3112 Lee Building
College Park, MD, 20742
 (301) 405-6269
 Domestic nonprofit research organization
The minimization of vibration-induced damage has become a critical issue for rocket launch ground support electronics (GSE). GSE located near a major rocket launch can be exposed to damaging environments including heat, rocket plume impingement, vibration, and acoustics. This extreme vibratory environment results in the need for extensive check out and frequent repairs of GSE systems after each launch. Another consequence is the need for extensive design and qualification testing to ensure equipment survivability. Passive GSE vibration isolation systems often have natural resonances within the broad excitation spectrum, resulting in poor equipment protection. Additionally, passive isolation systems can only be tuned for one excitation type (amplitude / frequency) and one GSE rack arrangement. If the expected vibration spectrum changes, the passive isolation system is no longer optimized and requires redesign. Furthermore, if the inertial properties of the GSE rack itself changes (rack or drawer is replaced or rearranged), the passive isolation system will no longer function properly which may lead to catastrophic failure. To overcome these deficiencies, Techno-Sciences Inc, in collaboration with the University of Maryland, proposes to develop an innovative Adaptive Magnetorheological Isolator (AMI) system that will automatically adjust its energy absorbing capabilities to real-time environmental measurements as well as GSE rack properties. Such a system will utilize internal motion sensors coupled with an on-board microcontroller to provide automatic adaptation to the excitation as well as the inertial properties of the supported rack. In doing so, the system will eliminate damaging natural resonances and provide optimal vibration isolation at all times. Because of its adaptability and optimal vibration isolation capabilities, the AMI system will significantly reduce design and life-cycle costs and enhance equipment reliability.

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

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