Thermal Management of Electrical Actuation System via Enhanced Air Circulation and Thermal Energy Storage

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-12-M-2263
Agency Tracking Number: F121-184-1122
Amount: $149,931.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2012
Solicitation Topic Code: AF121-184
Solicitation Number: 2012.1
Small Business Information
Rini Technologies Inc
582 South Econ Circle, Oviedo, FL, -
DUNS: 608777798
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Daniel Rini
 (407) 359-7138
Business Contact
 Daniel Rini
Title: President
Phone: (407) 359-7138
Research Institution
ABSTRACT: In the proposed Phase I program, we will validate and optimize a thermal management (TM) concept for High Performance Electric Actuation System (HPEAS). The TM system does not interfere with the Environment Control System (ECS) nor the Power and Thermal Management System (PTMS). The concept is based on enhanced forced convection and thermal energy storage (TES). It is expected this approach can address essentially all scenarios encountered in electrical actuation of flight control surfaces. The TM system can function in a wide range of environmental temperature and pressure, and under a variable gravity situation. During most of the flight time, forced convection and radiation are sufficient to transport the waste heat from the HPEAS to the bay wall or wing skin for rejection to ambient air. Phase change material (PCM) will absorb heat during periods of peak power and/or when the ambient condition is not suitable for heat sinking. The feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed concept will be demonstrated by performing experiments with a full-scale lab prototype simulating an electromechanical actuator (EMA). The experimental data can also be used to validate a numerical model which is essential for design and optimization of TM systems. In the Phase II program, TM systems will be designed, fabricated and applied to flight quality EMA hardware in collaboration with a prime aerospace company. BENEFIT: The primary benefit of the proposed technique is to greatly increase the heat transfer effectiveness from EMAs to ambient air under various flight conditions and body force. By significantly enhancing air circulation in bays, EMAs located there can operate at much higher power without overheating. The numerical model developed in this program can be used to optimize heat removal by air surrounding complex-shaped heat sources. It is anticipated the proposed TM system can find application in the cooling of electric motors and generators in hybrid and electric vehicles. The technology developed can also be applied to many types of portable systems such as personal cooling systems, etc.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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