NASA 1996 SBIR Phase I


PROPOSAL NUMBER : 96-1 01.08-2281

PROJECT TITLE : Design and Assessment Tool for Smart Rotor Active Control

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)

The final Phase II product of the proposed effort will be an experimentally validated methodology and associated tools for active control design for smart rotor helicopters. The focus will be on the trailing-edge flap as the candidate additional control surface, and the Phase I study will assess its potential for noise and vibration reduction and handling qualities improvement. The key innovation is the use of robust control design methods which allow control design to proceed even when there is uncertainty about the mechanism used to actuate the flap. The flap position and size will be optimized simultaneously with the control design.

The analysis will consist of a preliminary helicopter model and an implicit inclusion of noise considerations in Phase I, but will be replaced with a more sophisticated model including improved noise modeling in Phase II. Finally, control strategies and laws developed will be validated with a rotor test in Phase II. The results of this test will be used to refine the analysis and a final product consisting of a complete set of robust smart rotor design and analysis tools will be delivered.

POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS
The final Phase II product of this effort will be a validated tool for the evaluation and design of smart rotor control concepts in a comprehensive flight dynamics setting. This tool will aid current efforts to use smart structures technology in the U.S. rotorcraft industry in order to gain a competitive advantage in the global helicopter market. The unique combination of software backed by actual rotor tests will lead to a high degree of confidence in the results of such a tool.
NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR
Vineet Sahasrabudhe
Systems Technology, Inc.
13766 S. Hawthorne Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA 90250-7083
NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR
Systems Technology, Inc.
13766 S. Hawthorne Blvd.
Hawthorne, CA 90250-7083