Advanced Submarine Monitoring with Improved Diagnostics and Prognostics
Navy SBIR 2014.1 - Topic N141-029
NAVSEA - Mr. Dean Putnam - [email protected]
Opens: Dec 20, 2013 - Closes: Jan 22, 2014

N141-029 TITLE: Advanced Submarine Monitoring with Improved Diagnostics and Prognostics

TECHNOLOGY AREAS: Sensors, Electronics, Battlespace

ACQUISITION PROGRAM: VIRGINIA Class Program Office. This effort also has applicability to benef

OBJECTIVE: The objective is to develop an innovative on-node functionality for wireless sensor systems that enables high bandwidth transient capture and analysis within the constraints of energy harvester-powered wireless sensors.

DESCRIPTION: The Navy has an ongoing need to reduce total ownership costs and extend the life-cycle of components and systems to improve the reliability and overall operational readiness of the fleet. A cost effective method for ensuring component reliability is to augment the fixed schedule maintenance approach with deterministic component health and usage data to inform selective and targeted maintenance activities. The earliest indicators of machine failure occur at high frequencies and through impacts and transients. Pumps and bearings require high frequency data acquisition and transient event capture to predict the failure modes and capture operational events such as cavitation. This opportunity is enabled through Micro Electro Mechanical Sensors (MEMS), wireless communication, and energy harvesting, which are providing cost effective, scalable, reliable, and accurate solutions for acquiring data to determine health and usage status.

These types of monitoring systems provide essential data and secondary benefits that include information for improving component design and tailoring of maintenance work tasks. For most sensor applications, including those on submarines, wireless technology is the key enabler of monitoring applications because it reduces sensor installation cost, reduces maintenance associated with wiring faults, and enables system flexibility to add or remove sensors. The capability to measure and analyze transient events such as pump cavitation and bearing fault impacts is a key to extend the applicability to more applications (ref 1). A range of sensor hardware, energy harvesting, and algorithm technology has been developed to make this a reality (ref 2, 3). However, a technology gap exists for accurately capturing, analyzing, and wirelessly transmitting information from transient events (ref 4). Many prognostic and condition based maintenance capabilities would be improved by a sensor node with the ability to capture and analyze transient events. An innovative solution is needed to develop this capability in submarine environments.

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. However, the power requirements for constant monitoring with standard technology preclude transient event capture and analysis. Wireless solutions for applications that require transient event capture become expensive to accommodate large energy storage, or are overly limited due to inadequate energy storage. New techniques are needed at the node level to minimize power usage for high frequency transient event measurement, analysis, and transmission.

Responsive proposals will address the unique challenges of implementing challenging wireless sensor solutions in submarine environments, including limitations on acceptable battery chemistries, dense machinery environments for wireless communications, limited application knowledge, and high required operational availability. 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.

PHASE I: The company will develop a wireless node concept that enables high bandwidth transient capture and analysis within the constraints of energy harvester-powered wireless sensors. 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 in meeting the performance goals defined in Phase II development plan and the Navy requirements for the wireless sensor. System 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 will meet Navy requirements. The company will prepare a Phase III development plan to transition the technology to Navy use.

PHASE III: The company will be expected to support the Navy in transitioning the technology for Navy use. The company will develop the wireless sensor node according to the Phase III development plan for evaluation to determine its effectiveness in an operationally relevant environment. The company will support the Navy for test and validation to certify and qualify the system for Navy use.

PRIVATE SECTOR COMMERCIAL POTENTIAL/DUAL-USE APPLICATIONS: The technology developed under this topic could be used in a wide range of applications throughout industry to enable a breakthrough in wireless monitoring and actuation and control capability.

1. 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.

2. Loverich, Jacob J., Jeremy E. Frank, and Richard T. Geiger. "Self-powered Wireless Sensors for Condition Based Maintenance on Ships", 2009 Intelligent Ships VIII Proceedings, May 20-21, 2009. Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA.

3. Sinha, Jyoti; Elbhbah, Keri. "A future possibility of vibration based condition monitoring of rotating machines", 2013, Mechanical Systems and Signal Processing, Volume 34, 231-240.

4. Chattopadhyay, Aditi, Mark Seaver, Antonio Papandreou-Suppapola, Seung B. Kim, Narayan Kovvali, Charles R. Farrar, Matt H. Triplett, and Mark M. Derriso. "A Structural Health Monitoring Workshop Roadmap for Transitioning Critical Technology from Research to Practice", 2012, DTIC Document Accession Number: ADA554786.

KEYWORDS: Pump cavitation monitoring; wireless sensor nodes; transient event capture; energy harvesting; prognostic maintenance; health and usage monitoring

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