Integrated Mobility and Vehicle Design Tool

Award Information
Department of Defense
Solitcitation Year:
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Phase I
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Small Business Information
23440 Airpark Blvd, P.O. Box 66, Calumet, MI, 49913
Hubzone Owned:
Woman Owned:
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Principal Investigator
 David Less
 Principal Engineer
 (906) 482-9568
Business Contact
 Keith Johnson
Title: President
Phone: (906) 482-9506
Research Institution
The Army's next generation of weapons systems and tactical vehicles must have increased mobility and more efficient system performance. These design goals require an integrated design process to optimize mobility performance and system efficiency. The needfor an improved design process is further driven by new vehicle technology, including HEV and unmanned systems, which require new and innovative design paradigms to exploit fully the advantages of these technologies. ThermoAnalytics, in conjunction withthe Keweenaw Research Center, proposes to create an integrated mobility and vehicle design tool to meet these challenging design goals. The tool will model and evaluate vehicle performance and design criteria: drivetrain performance, tractive effort,drawbar pull, safe weight passage, agility, maneuverability, speed, off-road performance, and production, maintenance, and support costs. The design tool will use innovative goal visualization and trade analyses techniques. To accommodate the expandingbody of research on mobility modeling, the design tool will include both the cone index and the Bekker value methods of characterizing mobility. This tool will provide designers with the ability to design efficient and effective weapons systems andvehicles for off-road and on-road mobility, gap-crossing ability, and maneuverability. The simulation tool can also be used for war-gaming and strategic planning. The proposed engineering tool will address a number of the needs of vehicle design engineers:1) Trade analyses of vehicle design factors affecting vehicle mobility, 2) Integrated and efficient design of weapons systems and tactical vehicles, 3) Analysis of drivetrain design, 4) Mission and strategic planning of vehicle operations over variedterrain, and 5) Vehicle modeling for war-gaming. With the proposed integrated mobility and vehicle design tool, engineers can optimize and efficiently evaluate their designs using real world scenarios through statistically accurate descriptions of terrainvariations. By using this tool, vehicle designers will be able to produce integrated vehicle designs that possess improved mobility and increased system efficiency while minimizing production, maintenance, and support costs. The tool can also be used as atest bed for mobility algorithm development and testing. Commercial applications of the tool include ATV, robotic, Mars rover, and forestry and construction vehicle design efforts. With the mobility design tool, tires can be better matched with automotivedrivetrains, vehicles and tires designed for superior traction on ice and snow, and the efficiency of automotive drivetrains increased. The mobility tool will complement the vehicle thermal analysis capability of ThermoAnalytics' MuSES and RadTherm codes.Since these analysis codes are tied closely with a variety of CAD and CFD (computational fluid dynamics) codes, including Pro/Engineer, ICEM, Rhino, Star-CD, and Fluent, the proposed mobility tool will form part of a comprehensive suite for vehicle design,analysis, and simulation.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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