Mobile Robot Seat (MRS) for Helicopter Aircrew

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-09-C-6013
Agency Tracking Number: F081-005-1043
Amount: $749,931.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2009
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: AF081-005
Solicitation Number: 2008.1
Small Business Information
Infoscitex Corporation
303 Bear Hill Road, Waltham, MA, 02451
DUNS: 004627316
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Zhiqing Cheng
 Principal Biomechanical E
 (937) 255-1599
Business Contact
 William Thompson
Title: Contracts Manager
Phone: (781) 890-1338
Research Institution
In Phase II, Infoscitex (IST) will focus on developing a Mobile Robot Seat (MRS) system that provides maximum protection, mobility, and accommodation to helicopter aircrew. In Phase I, IST successfully created an innovative concept for the MRS, completed system architecture and design, explored key technologies of the system, and evaluated its safety performance via modeling and simulation. In Phase II, we will further refine system architecture, design components and substructures (seat frame, seat bucket and cushion, and seat base), develop key technologies (impact energy absorber, pre-acting device, automatic weight adjusting device, and the restraint for preventing flail injuries), and complete system integration and prototyping. We will use advanced auto CAD in the structure design and optimization techniques to minimize the weight and to maximize the strength and crashworthiness of the structure. We will develop computational models for major components and substructures and build an integrated model for the entire system. We will use these models to simulate, evaluate, and improve the responses, performance, and functions of the system. Upon the completion of our Phase II effort, we will have a prototype of the MRS with major functions and capabilities, which is ready for technology transition and commercialization in Phase III. BENEFITS: *Effective protection and restraint--By employing a pre-acting mechanism, the aircrew injury risk is reduced and safe impact range is extended. By automatically adjusting to the occupants weight, optimal force-displacement for each individual is achieved for the impact energy attenuation.  By using a four-point harness belt, the aircrew is well restrained at various positions (seated, half-standing, and standing) and is reliably secured while reaching out of the aircraft.  As such, effective protection is provided to the occupant. *Maximum mobility for the aircrew--By using a sliding track in combination with turning table, the aircrew can perform mission duties in the seated position within a 6 ft. diameter circle.  *Adaptable occupant support--A portion of the seat pan can be pitched forward to support the occupant in a half-standing position.   *Improved seating comfort--This is achieved through optimized seat configuration and material and by providing adaptable support to the occupant in various positions.  *Full range anthropometric accommodation, from 5th % female to 95th % male--This is realized by (a) Using automatic weight adjusting device to obtain optimal force-displacement profile for different occupant weight; (b) Appropriate seating space design; and (c) Adjustable harness belts. *Rapid position transition--By using extensible harness belt and adjustable seat pan, the aircrew can quickly change body postures among seated, half-standing, and full standing.     *System integration readiness--The seat can be mounted on to the floor with existing structure or minimal modifications. To yield space, the seat can be stowed, pushed aside in any direction, or removed from the track. *The target customer rotorcraft is the CSAR-X. However, this seating system can be equipped in a wide fleet of military helicopters as an aircrew seat, such as V-22, CH-46, H-47 (CH-47), H-53, SH-60, UH-60, HH-65, and H-3/CH-3, C-130J, and NASA Orion capsule. It can also be used in civilian rescue and law enforcement helicopters.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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