Reducing maintenance requirements and extending the life of military equipment are Navy-wide needs. For Navy rotorcraft, cost and maintenance savings are realized by improving the assessment of the health of dynamic components and management of their past, current, and projected life. Health and Usage Monitoring Systems (HUMS) are addressing this need for some components on rotorcraft. Current HUMS monitor only the most life critical components because of installation costs, weight, complexity, and possibility of wire failure. Wireless sensing is an emerging technology that is enabling cost reduction and increased sensing for military and industrial needs. However, batteries render the solutions infeasible because of weight and maintenance concerns. KCF Technologies has developed vibration power harvesting devices for self-powered sensors using single-crystal piezoelectric materials.
Funding source: US Naval Air Systems Command SBIR N07-076