NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-1 O2.02-9680
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Propulsion Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Electromagnetic Rotor Torque Check

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Florida Turbine Technologies, Inc.
1701 Military Trail, Suite 110
Jupiter, FL 33458 - 7887
(561) 427-6337

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Andrew Wall
1701 Military Trail, Suite 110
Jupiter , FL 33458 - 7887
(561) 427-6282

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
In order to achieve a high payoff turbopump with a low investment, the modern turbopump in today's space propulsion program is required to have greater life, with lower maintenance costs. In order to achieve lower maintenance costs, the turnaround time between mission cycles must be kept to a minimum. At each cycle, one item on the maintenance checklist to be conducted is rotor torque.
In order for a turbopump to be returned to service, among other requirements, it must be clear of all FOD as well as damage to the rotor or bearings. One maintenance check that is a valid indicator of FOD or rotor and bearing damage is a rotor torque check. Failure of a turbopump due to rotor or bearing damage may lead to an event categorized as a Criticality 1 (Loss of Life or Vehicle) failure mode.
In most modern turbopumps, performing a rotor torque check involves timely and costly maintenance procedures. In many cases, inlet piping or structural cases must be removed to expose the turbopump rotor. As each piece of hardware is reinstalled, they routinely must undergo lengthy quality checks to ensure proper assembly and function.
FTT proposes development of a means to measure the rotor torque through the use of an electromagnetic drive device. Similar to a DC electrical motor, the new component would be powered and cause the rotor to rotate. After recording measurements of the rotor speed and electromagnet input power, the rotor torque could be calculated. Incorporating a device such as this into a turbopump would reduce time associated with torque measurements from days to seconds.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The anticipated benefits from this technology include reduced maintenance time and increased reliability as fewer turbopump components will be disassembled and handled during maintenance cycles. This technology is directly applicable to booster engines, in-space engines, and lunar engine NASA applications.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The resulting technology is directly applicable to rotating equipment and turbo machinery in the industrial sectors. This technology would impact maintenance costs by allowing reduced maintenance time, and fewer components to be handled during maintenance cycles. Automated rotor torque checks would improve health monitoring capabilities as engine health could be monitored in real time, which could be especially useful for equipment that is located in remote locations. With the addition of rotor torque data, preventative maintenance and scheduled downtime could be better managed and organized to prevent future outages.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.)
Launch Engine/Booster
Spacecraft Main Engine

Form Generated on 09-03-10 12:12