Test Systems Simulate Several Impact Scenarios

Lansmont Corp. engineers have developed the active impact surface design technology for several test machines currently installed at the Army Research Laboratory in Adelphi, Maryland and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) located at Valparaiso, Florida’s Eglin Air Force Base.

Posted in: Application Briefs, Aircraft operations, Impact tests, Test equipment and instrumentation, Test facilities, Military aircraft

Hybrid Energy Storage System Designed for Tanks and Stryker Vehicles

International Battery has been given a contract from the U.S. Army’s Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC) to develop a hybrid energy storage system for combat tanks and Stryker armored vehicles. The hybrid battery system incorporates lithium iron phosphate cells (for energy) and ultracapacitors (for power).

Posted in: Application Briefs, Defense, Lithium-ion batteries, Ultracapacitors and supercapacitors, Suppliers, Hybrid electric vehicles, Military vehicles and equipment

Process for Testing Aeromedical Equipment

Medical devices are designed to function in environmentally controlled locations, such as stationary hospitals, and not within the harsh, dynamic aircraft environment. Yet, the same medical devices used to care for patients in a hospital environment are often the most capable devices for patient care during transport from one facility to another. These missions are called aeromedical evacuation (AE) missions, and they provide life-sustaining care for a vast array of patients. However, because the devices are designed for a controlled environment, concerns they may adversely affect the operation of aircraft systems must be addressed. Conversely, the aircraft may adversely affect the proper operation and efficacy of the medical equipment. Failure of medical devices during in-flight medical care may result in exposing patients and aircrew to hazardous situations.

Posted in: Briefs, Physical Sciences, Architecture, Medical equipment and supplies, Aircraft operations, Risk assessments, Safety testing and procedures, Rescue and emergency vehicles and equipment

Ultrasonic Guided Wave Analysis for Detecting and Classifying Damage in a Thin Metallic Plate

A ircraft and rotorcraft structures are being redesigned with new lower weight materials; however, older metallic structures continue to be used. These older structures need monitoring and characterization of damage for con-

tinued operation. The use of ultrasonic guided waves is one nondestructive technique that can be used to interrogate such structures. Typically, large cracks or geometric variations can be found by examining signal amplitude,

but smaller damage that can suddenly grow in size and cause serious damage cannot be detected.

Posted in: Briefs, Physical Sciences, Aircraft structures, Aluminum, Fatigue, Acoustics, Inspections

Data Fusion of Geographically Dispersed Information for Test and Evaluation

Test and evaluation relies on computer collection and manipulation of data from a myriad of sensors and sources. More computing power allows for increases in the breadth and depth of the information collected. The same computing power must assist in identifying, ordering, storing, and providing easy access to that data. Fast networking allows large clusters of high-performance computing resources to be brought to bear on test and evaluation. This increase in fidelity has correspondingly increased the volumes of data that tests are capable of generating.

Posted in: Briefs, Information Technology, Data exchange, Data management, Test procedures

Microelectromechanical System (MEMS) Switch Test

Analyzing microelectromechanical system (MEMS) switch behavior is a new field of study that guides the production of MEMS switches. One issue of primary importance is the degradation of contact resistance over the lifetime of the device, and whether small variations in the resistance initially can be prognostically used to predict future performance. Unfortunately, commercially available equipment is limited by its data collection rate, and is not a realistic option to examine every cycle of a switch expected to potentially survive for several trillion cycles. In addition, these tests must be performed on tens to hundreds of switches, necessitating the need for a parallel measurement solution.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Microelectricmechanical device, Switches, Test procedures

Test and Evaluation Uses of Heterogeneous Computing

T est and evaluation of current systems is a time-consuming process that reflects both the intricacies of the object of the test and the range of equipment, personnel, and environments required. Many argue that this process consumes far too much of the time that it takes to put new systems into the hands of the warfighters, and uses way too many resources without much obvious benefit for those in combat.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, CAD / CAM / CAE, Computer simulation, Test procedures, Military aircraft, Military vehicles and equipment

Gallium Nitride High-Power Electronics

Gallium nitride (GaN) high-power electronic (HPE) devices have the potential to outperform those made from 4H-silicon carbide (SiC), the polytype used for HPE devices, because it has a larger critical electric field, ξC, the field at which the device breaks down – 3.5 versus 2.5 MV/cm. This is due primarily to GaN’s larger energy gap, EG – 3.39 eV versus 3.25 eV. GaN also has a slightly larger electron mobility, μ – 930 versus 900 cm2/V·s.

Posted in: Briefs, Electronics & Computers, Electronic equipment, High voltage systems, Performance upgrades, Conductivity, Materials properties

Room-Temperature Sub-Diffraction-Limited Plasmon Laser

Lasers present the means to deliver powerful, coherent, and directional high-frequency electromagnetic energy. However, the diffraction limit of light imposes fundamental constraints on how compact such photonic devices can be and their potential for integration with electronic circuits, which are orders of magnitude smaller.

Posted in: Briefs, Photonics, Downsizing, Architecture, Integrated circuits, Lasers

Rare-Earth-Doped Soft Glass Optical Fibers for Coherent Wavelength Sources Above 2 Microns

Rare-earth-doped soft glass optical fibers were developed and characterized for fiber lasers emitting at wavelengths longer than 2 microns to allow efficient narrow line-width emission in the atmospheric window for coherent detection and LIDAR and DIAL sensing.

Posted in: Briefs, Photonics, Fiber optics, Lasers, Fibers, Glass