Wireless Monitoring of Hydraulic Actuators for Reducing Total Ownership Costs (TOC)
Navy SBIR 2014.1 - Topic N141-023
NAVSEA - Mr. Dean Putnam - dean.r.putnam@navy.mil
Opens: Dec 20, 2013 - Closes: Jan 22, 2014

N141-023 TITLE: Wireless Monitoring of Hydraulic Actuators for Reducing Total Ownership Costs (TOC)

TECHNOLOGY AREAS: Ground/Sea Vehicles

ACQUISITION PROGRAM: Acquisition Program: PMS450, VIRGINIA Class Program Office. This effort al

OBJECTIVE: The objective is to develop an innovative wireless sensor system that measures data on hydraulic actuators and creates actionable information at the node that leads to demonstrable improvements in Condition Based Maintenance (CBM) programs.

DESCRIPTION: The Navy has an ongoing need to reduce total ownership costs and extend the life-cycle of components and systems by improving the reliability and overall operational readiness of the fleet. Virginia-class submarines have more than 100 large hydraulic actuators, which are removed, overhauled, and reinstalled as a part of 600 Series work. These actuator overhauls are performed on a fixed schedule, regardless of their use or condition. Because many of the actuators that are sent back for overhaul require little or no maintenance, this fixed schedule approach is overly conservative, expensive, and introduces risk because the components can be damaged or improperly re-installed as a result of excessive actuator handling. Wireless sensor systems are a promising enabling technology for cost-reduction initiatives (ref 2). However, the machine prognostic requirements of high sampling frequency and synchronized data acquisition exceed the total amount of wireless data that can be transmitted continuously (ref 3). An innovative solution is needed to produce actionable prognostic information at the measurement location to reduce the bandwidth.

Wireless sensor systems can provide distributed intelligence collection for performance evaluation, prognostic maintenance efforts, and situational awareness. Technology exists for efficient low bandwidth wireless data collection. Wireless solutions for applications that require high bandwidth measurements become expensive to accommodate large energy storage, or are overly limited due to inadequate energy storage. Sending all the raw measurements stresses bandwidth and decreases the life of the wireless node. Directly inserting diagnostic or data compression algorithms at the node level requires high data rates and computational effort which decreases the value of the wireless node. New techniques are needed at the node level to minimize power usage while converting the raw data into maintenance instructions.

A successful technology development and transition will result in fewer machinery overhauls, shorter work task times, and optimized maintenance logistics. These workload reductions will result in cost savings through shorter depot times, increase overall fleet availability, and reduced total operational costs (ref 1).

PHASE I: The company will develop a wireless system concept that produces maintenance instructions for hydraulic actuators. The company will demonstrate the feasibility of the concept in meeting Navy needs and will establish that the concept can be developed into a useful product for the Navy. Feasibility will be established by material testing and analytical modeling. The company will prepare a development plan for Phase II, which will address technical risk reduction, as well as performance goals and key technical milestones.

PHASE II: Based on the results of Phase I and the Phase II development plan, the small business will develop a prototype for evaluation. The prototype will be evaluated to determine its capability to meet the performance goals defined in Phase II development plan and Navy sensor requirements. Sensor performance will be demonstrated through prototype evaluation and modeling, or analytical methods over the required range of parameters, including numerous deployment cycles. Evaluation results will be used to refine the prototype into an initial design that can be used in a shipboard demonstration and will meet Navy requirements. The company will develop a Phase III development plan to transition the technology into a system that can be acquired by the Navy.

PHASE III: If Phase II is successful, the company will be expected to support the Navy in transitioning the technology to Navy use should a Phase III award be made. Based on the Phase II results, the company will develop sensor systems to achieve the desired systems in submarine sensor systems. The company will support evaluation aboard ship and in qualifying and certifying the system for use on the OHIO Replacement Class submarine and for back fit to the VIRGINIA Class submarine.

PRIVATE SECTOR COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL/DUAL-USE APPLICATIONS: The technology developed under this topic could be used in a wide range of industry applications, providing specific system performance information, and a method for collecting and analyzing such information, to enable a breakthrough in wireless monitoring and actuation and control capability.

1. Goff, C. I., McNamara, C. L., Bradley, J. M., Trost, C. S., Dalton, W. J. and Jabaley, JR., M. E. (2011), "Maximizing Platform Value: Increasing VIRGINIA Class Deployments". Naval Engineers Journal, 123: 119139. https://www.navalengineers.org/Hamilton_Award_Papers/2011/Goff.pdf

2. Byington, Carl S., Michael J. Roemer, Gregory J. Kacprzynski, and Thomas Galie. "Prognostic Enhancements to Diagnostic Systems for Improved Condition-Based Maintenance", 2002, DTIC Document Accession Number: ADA408880. http://www.dtic.mil/cgi-bin/GetTRDoc?AD=ADA408880

3. Yick, Jennifer, Biswanath Mukherjee, and Dipak Ghosal. "Wireless sensor network survey." Computer networks 52.12 (2008): 2292-2330. http://ahvaz.ist.unomaha.edu/azad/temp/ali/08-yick-wireless-sensor-network-localization-coverage-survey-good.pdf

KEYWORDS: Hydraulic actuator maintenance; wireless sensor nodes; condition based monitoring; Virgina-class overhaul; Maintenance Reduced Total Ownership Costs, component reliability

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