• By
    Authored by Arms et al., and featured in American Helicopter Society: 2009
  • Posted
    Friday, January 24, 2020 - 14:45

Integrated structural health monitoring and reporting system for use on pitch link of Navy Bell M412 helicopter synchronizes distributed miniature sensors and active RFID in a low-power network.

Abstract: Monitoring the direct loads of helicopter rotating components reduces maintenance costs, maximizes structural life, and enhances operational safety. As the fleet ages, there is an increasing need for embedded wireless sensors capable of detecting and tracking accumulated damage.

By combining structural wireless load tracking with a network of RFIDs, a rich amount of information can be collected and used to optimize aircraft maintenance.

MicroStrain demonstrated a fully programmable structural health monitoring system for use on Navy aircraft. Network design enabled synchronized, high-speed health data from wireless strain gauges, accelerometers, and load/torque cells.  Data were collected at multiple sampling rates and aggregated within a base station WSDA®.  High resolution wireless monitoring improves the reliability of preventive and predictive health practices.  The system support autonomous, long-term health tracking for enhanced condition based fleet management.