Integrated Damage Detection System for Composite Submarine Propellers

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Navy
Contract: N00014-12-C-0316
Agency Tracking Number: N111-067-1017
Amount: $741,979.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2012
Solicitation Year: 2011
Solicitation Topic Code: N111-067
Solicitation Number: 2011.1
Small Business Information
10 Canal Park, Suite 601, Cambridge, MA, -
DUNS: 111487588
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Seth Kessler
 (617) 661-5616
Business Contact
 Seth Kessler
Title: President
Phone: (617) 661-5616
Research Institution
This SBIR aims to develop a damage detection system that can be integrated with composite submarine propellers, with the goal of capturing precursors to delamination. During the Phase I, Metis Design Corporation (MDC) worked closely with Rolls-Royce Naval Marine (RR) to provide a proof of principal demonstration using previously developed sensor hardware. The system utilizes piezoelectric actuators/sensors to propagate ultrasonic waves in composite material, using the upper/lower surfaces as wave guides. RR manufactured representative propeller sections that tapered from 1.5"to 0.5"thick, which were tested in 1-meter of sea-water. Results demonstrated the ability to repeatedly measure presence and estimate severity of simulated delamination. Building on this success, the Phase II effort seeks to develop a customized system suitable for long-duration installation in a submarine environment. Major tasks will focus on the optimization of sensors and electrodes for relevant structural geometry, fabrication of suitable hardware that can withstand a relevant environment, development of robust algorithms to determining the state of the propellers, and finally a compelling underwater demonstration of a prototype system. The Phase II Option will aim to subsequently test the prototype system through a variety of environments and loads as well as quantifying the system performance and accuracy.

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

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