Predicting Faults and Determining Life of Electro-Mechanical Actuation (EMA) System for Engine and Aerospace Applications

Award Information
Department of Defense
Air Force
Award Year:
Phase I
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
AF 09-176
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Frontier Technology, Inc.
75 Aero Camino, Suite A, Goleta, CA, 93117
Hubzone Owned:
Minority Owned:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Chris Cooper
Principal Investigator
(978) 927-4774
Business Contact:
Rhonda Adawi
Contracts Manager
(805) 685-6672
Research Institution:
Frontier Technology, Inc. (FTI) will develop and demonstrate an architecture and conceptual design for an electro-mechanical actuator (EMA) prognostic system that will provide an estimate of remaining useful life (RUL) and predict faults at least two mission profiles prior to failure. FTI will apply proven gas turbine and rocket engine health management approaches to EMAs to detect abnormal conditions, high stress, and precursors of future failures. The system developed in support of this topic will be based on the principles of fusion prognostics that combine data-derived technology for real-time performance analysis with physics-based models that support the computation of RUL. The system will create and adapt statistical system performance models to detect abnormalities, degradations and precursors of future failures, isolate and identify the failure, compute and RUL and as appropriate recommend or cause initiation of remedial action. The prognostic system will be designed to operate on-board in real-time or off-board as part of a ground-based support system. It will rely on sensors currently in place and will be extensible to multiple EMA configurations and applications. This Phase I effort extends FTI's research into predictive analysis, fault isolation and RUL computation for electronic and electro-mechanical systems. BENEFIT: The innovation resulting from this research will have direct impact on any enterprise that is dependent on and needs to improve the operation of EMAs. Implementation of new maintenance strategies such as CBM requires the ability to determine the condition of the EMA, predict degrading or failing conditions and determine RUL. The technology will provide the ability to incorporate diagnostic and fault predictions into actuation systems to improve safety, maintainability, and serviceability while reducing cost. Because the system uses existing system data to provide the models used for analysis of system states and RUL it is easily extended to variety of EMAs and applications. The ultimate result is optimum use of the EMA while minimizing unplanned failures and reducing impact on mission or business success. FTI has identified the following areas as being immediate application targets for this technology: fixed-wing aircraft (military and commercial), rotorcraft, energy production, and manufacturing.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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