KCF Technologies has received funding to continue a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program to develop a wireless strain sensor for helicopter rotors.
The strain sensor, known as the Smart Rod End, is a push rod end that has a load sensor embedded in the shank of the rod end. The rod end is targeted for helicopter rotor assembly load monitoring, which is essential for optimizing maintenance practices, increasing aircraft availability, and improving safety. Conventional wired sensors have limited the deployment of such monitoring capability because of reliability, cost, and weight. The Smart Rod End load sensor addresses these limitations because it is powered by an energy harvester and uses wireless communication to send the load data to helicopter’s Health and Usage Monitoring System (HUMS).
The Smart Rod End provides data that is needed for supporting helicopter rotor condition monitoring, which allow for optimization of costly maintenance practices.
Project lead, Dr. Jacob Loverich said, “We are pleased to have this opportunity to provide a key enabling technology for supporting the use of condition based maintenance practices in the Navy’s helicopter fleet.”
KCF Technologies is a dynamic technology company that develops and commercializes embedded intelligence solutions for industry and the military. The company vision is to be a leader in the development of federally-funded technologies and bridge the gap to successful commercial products by establishing strategic partnerships.
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