In-Service Fatigue Loads Data Gathering

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8222-12-C-0002
Agency Tracking Number: F112-213-2200
Amount: $149,883.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: AF112-213
Solicitation Number: 2011.2
Solicitation Year: 2011
Award Year: 2012
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2012-04-02
Award End Date (Contract End Date): N/A
Small Business Information
459 Hurricane Lane, Suite 102, Williston, VT, -
DUNS: 161852074
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Steven Arms
 (802) 862-6629
Business Contact
 Sarah Lynch
Title: Contracts Specialist
Phone: (802) 862-6629
Research Institution
ABSTRACT: Structural monitoring of the landing gear of fixed and rotary wing aircraft is of critical importance to the Air Force. These structures are subjected to repeated large dynamic loads that are highly variable in nature. In order to track these structures"fatigue over time, the magnitude and direction of load events and the number of fatigue cycles must be recorded. Smart, embedded multi-directional load sensors can provide this information. We propose to demonstrate this capability by combining a network of time-synchronized wireless load sensors with integrated microelectronics for static and dynamic loads sensing, data recording, communications, and energy harvesting. Our sensors possess major advantages, including: sealed stainless packaging, full calibration prior to installation, and rapid installation without modification to existing landing gear structures to enable full computation of landing gear forces and moments. Embedded firmware within a wireless sensor data aggregator (WSDA) will automatically detect landing gear deployment, and each node will commence high speed, time synchronized data recording. Data shall be collected prior to, during, and after landing by the WSDA. In Phase II, the WSDA will be programmed to host fatigue algorithms. Energy management combined with energy harvesting will be included to eliminate sensor node battery maintenance. BENEFIT: Our proposed wireless sensors are small, completely self-contained, and may be calibrated independently of the landing gear structure. They may be installed on existing landing gear without any modifications to the gear itself. Working system demonstrations under this SBIR program will lead to significant opportunities aboard Air Force, Navy, Army, Marines, Coast Guard, civil, and commercial aircraft. The potential benefits of our approach are substantiated by the strong support already provided to us by a major US aircraft manufacturer.

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

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