A low-cost FBG-based fiber-optic sensor system will provide high-speed SHM for military and commercial aerospace vehicle health monitoring. Further applications include jet and flight control testing, wind turbines, oil exploration, ship structures, nuclear power plant, pipe and critical infrastructure monitoring for e.g. homeland security, safety or general maintenance. IFOS is in talks with Knight Carver Wind Group, a leading international wind turbine blade manufacturer to apply its technology to condition monitoring in wind turbine blades. There are remarkable similarities between the needs of the aviation industry given they both use composites under significant stress cycles over extended temperature ranges and on complex geometries. At the appropriate price point, a major application of the IFOS technology would be in the condition monitoring of wind turbine blades and other parts. Success in the commercialization of this innovation will enable IFOS to expand and employ additional engineering, marketing and support staff.
A structural health monitoring system attached to the aircraft structure, in the areas susceptible to fatigue and impact damage, provides the dynamic data that can reliably indicate the health status of the aircraft structure in real-time. This project has direct NASA applications in the following areas: UAVs such as Ikhana (Predator B) NASA support of Air Transportation Security programs Automated Nondestructive Evaluation for faulty structural components Integrated Vehicle Health Monitoring (IVHM) Flight control System with real-time autonomous sensor validity monitors Monitoring manufacturing, assembly process and control; composite materials for internal temperature and pressure during the curing process; composite bonded repairs; sandwich structures; gun barrels; reusable launch vehicles; pressure vessels and tanks during burst testing; aero propulsion flight tests, etc. Self-monitoring structures with alarm and abort capabilities Pyrotechnic test and data acquisition for shock response spectrum analysis.