Flange edge-location metrology sensor for robotic drilling in the JSF inlet ducts

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-07-M-5505
Agency Tracking Number: F063-011-0068
Amount: $99,945.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2007
Solicitation Year: 2006
Solicitation Topic Code: AF063C-011
Solicitation Number: 2006.3
Small Business Information
303 Bear Hill Road, Waltham, MA, 02451
DUNS: 004627316
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 James Goldie
 Manager, Electromechanical Systems
 (781) 890-1338
Business Contact
 William Thompson
Title: Contracts Manager
Phone: (781) 890-1338
Email: bthompson@infoscitex.com
Research Institution
A sensor is proposed that will allow the robotic system to “see” the frame mounting flange through the inlet duct wall. The ability to directly perceive the location of the flange circumvents the stackup of a number of metrology errors, alleviating the problem of holes in violation of edge margin requirements and potentially offering designers with the option of reducing frame mounting flange widths. Northrop Grumman’s own study indicates that accurate kinematic modeling is not enough to solve this problem, and they are seeking new metrology approaches. Phase I will demonstrate the feasibility of the sensor by testing it in a manner that closely emulates its use in the real application. The objective will be to prove that the sensor can locate the flange to the necessary accuracy in the presence of representative manufacturing and material tolerances. In addition, Phase I will both define the integration of the sensor function into the robotic drilling metrology process and incorporate the sensor design into the overall robotic system design, including packaging, signals, and electrical and mechanical interfaces. Phase II would undertake integration of the sensor systems into manufacturing robots and demonstrate their use with test articles and subsequently in pilot production.

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

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