Innovative Method for Real-Time Damage Alleviation

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N68335-11-C-0509
Agency Tracking Number: N112-118-0034
Amount: $79,986.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2011
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: N112-118
Solicitation Number: 2011.2
Small Business Information
3190 Fairview Park Drive, Suite 650, Falls Church, VA, -
DUNS: 010983174
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Chance McColl
 Director of Engineering -
 (770) 516-7750
Business Contact
 Scott Bradfield
Title: President
Phone: (703) 226-4061
Research Institution
Deployment of Health and Usage Monitoring Systems (HUMS) on rotorcraft has resulted in significant improvements in maintenance action efficiency, increases in safety, and reductions in cost. Current HUMS provide diagnostic/prognostic information to maintenance crews through Condition Based Maintenance (CBM), which allows parts to be replaced on an as-needed basis. This marks an improvement over legacy approaches, which relied on conservative life estimates that resulted in early component retirement. HUMS shows tremendous value, yet is still a passive system that provides no active fatigue damage alleviation. If a pilot has the tendency to over-control the aircraft, it may result in more damage than if the pilot were to provide only the control required to get the job done. Even if pilots are trained to reduce control inputs to the required level, the evolution of rotorcraft flight control systems to increase handling qualities and responsiveness can cause an increase in component damage rates. This proposal defines a system to be developed to interface with HUMS to automatically reduce aircraft component damage in real-time by modifying the control system output. This system will track damage and subsequently optimize the flight control system output to reduce damage accrual, all while maintaining the required maneuverability, flight quality, and handling qualities.

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

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