Health Management Tools for Rocket Engine Turbomachinery

Award Information
Department of Defense
Air Force
Award Year:
Phase II
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Frontier Technology, Inc.
75 Aero Camino, Suite A, Goleta, CA, -
Hubzone Owned:
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Woman Owned:
Principal Investigator:
Gary Key
Principal Investigator
(321) 277-8396
Business Contact:
Rhonda Adawi
Contracts Manager
(805) 685-6672
Research Institution:
Frontier Technology, Inc. (FTI), in cooperation with Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne and D&E Power and Propulsion, will develop tools to better understand the current (and projected) health state of liquid rocket engine turbomachinery. The ultimate goal of the research is the ability to provide real-time health management/monitoring of these devices with the objective of reducing turnaround time, increasing availability and minimizing mission aborts or catastrophic failures. FTI will combine principles of real-time prognostic health management with Linear Engine Models to detect real-time system status and accurately identify failure sources and recommended actions. During Phase II, FTI will develop, demonstrate and validate tools so that experiments in sub-scale or full-scale hardware can be performed and compared to model predictions. The primary deliverables for this effort will be the tools and models created along with the validation data collected. FTI will use data from actual flights and data from rocket engine turbomachinery simulators to validate the ability of the health state analysis models and algorithms to perform accurately on several rocket engines. This effort extends FTI’s research into prognostic assessment of real-time, dynamic systems and the ability of health management technology to reduce turnaround time for reusable systems. BENEFIT: The technology resulting from this research is beneficial to any enterprise where early detection of degrading system performance and faster, reliable turnaround time results in increased availability, improved reliability and reduced cost. By providing the ability to identify system faults in real time and to select the correct response, the technology reduces the impact of degrading conditions or unexpected faults on systems operations. Once a system has been identified as requiring service, the focus shifts to minimizing the time that system is unavailable for use. The technology supports this objective by ensuring that the problem is quickly and correctly identified and that the system is in a healthy state when returned to service. The technology is particularly applicable to organizations that manage fleets of aircraft, vehicles or complex systems and desire to reduce unplanned outages and early returns from service while increasing system availability and effectiveness.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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