NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation


SUBTOPIC TITLE:Intelligent Onboard Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE:Onboard Space Autonomy Through Integration of Health Management and Control Reconfiguration

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Scientific Systems Company, Inc.
500 West Cummings Park, Suite 3000
Woburn ,MA 01801 - 6580
(781) 933 - 5355

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Eliot S.-M. Li
500 West Cummings Park, Suite 3000
Woburn, MA  01801 -6580
(781) 933 - 5355

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The main objective of this Phase II effort is to develop integrated health management and control reconfiguration algorithms that allow future space systems to respond autonomously and optimally to subsystem failure or degradation. This will involve developing new techniques for health monitoring and data fusion, as well as those for identifying, characterizing, and exploiting analytic redundancy. To achieve our goal of demonstrating the features of the proposed technology, Phase II will focus on developing an integrated health management system prototype for a combined system of Electrical Power Distribution and Control subsystem and Attitude Control Subsystem that is present in all space vehicles, including the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV). The prototype will be developed based on an open architecture, and will be tested on hardware facilities maintained by Boeing Phantom Works to ensure the proposed technologies will reach the required maturity level for transitioning to NASA by the end of the Phase II period. Our subcontractor Boeing is part of a team selected by NASA to develop preliminary designs for the CEV. The partnership will allow us to transition the Integrated Vehicle Health Management (IVHM) and control reconfiguration technology developed under this project to the CEV program aggressively during Phase III.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed integrated health management and control reconfiguration technologies will be directly applicable to the Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV) design. Specifically, the proposed techniques for fault detection and diagnosis, information fusion, and degradation management, as well as tools for health management design, will contribute to the integrated health management capability for the CEV significantly. The fault tolerant control reconfiguration algorithms developed in this project is also applicable to many current and future space missions, including Triana, MAXIM, LISA, etc. The capability to continue the mission under failure, as well as the cost saving and increased reliability, will be very attractive from the mission level perspective.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed technologies have wide application in fault tolerant control of both manned and unmanned aircraft. For human operated aircraft, there has been significant effort during the past decade in developing flight control reconfiguration methods for vehicles subject to a limited amount of control surface damages. The control reconfiguration design has been developed based on the idea of analytic redundancy control concept by leveraging off the remaining control surfaces to produce equivalent force and torque in the direction of the lost ones. However, control methodology that allows the aircraft to "limp" home under the underactuated control situation has not been closely addressed. The autonomous underactuated control concept developed in this project can potentially be applied to aircraft flight control systems as the backup mode that would significantly increase its safety and reliability beyond its current level. Similarly, for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle/Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicle (UAV/UCAV) systems, the ability to maintain/continue the mission subject to severe damage of multiple control surfaces due to enemy fires or actuators outages via autonomous underactuated control design algorithms would offer a tremendous power to military operations' success.

Form Printed on 08-01-05 13:52