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Proceedings Paper

Development of an SMA actuator for in-flight rotor blade tracking
Author(s): Dennis K. Kennedy; Friedrich K. Straub; Lawrence McDonald Schetky; Zaffir A. Chaudhry; Richard Roznoy
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Paper Abstract

Another solution to the helicopter blade-tracking problem has been investigated. A discrete, blade-installed actuator utilizing shape memory alloy (SMA) torsion tubes has been developed to enable in-flight rotor tracking. SMA torsion tubes from three materials were tested and one was selected for its cyclic stability. Improved tube fabrication, heating, end attachment methods, and locking schemes were developed. The final prototype actuator employed two bi-axial SMA tubes for actuation/bias; a SMA activated lock for power off operation, and integrated microprocessor control electronics. Tests under static and dynamic loading showed that actuation requirements, except for bandwidth, were met. Increased bandwidth, were met. Increased bandwidth may be obtained by improved control algorithms or cooling. The developed SMA actuator enables an in-flight, real-time adjustment of a blade-tracking tab. Projected payoffs are reduced maintenance cost as well as reduced helicopter vibrations and improved performance.

Paper Details

Date Published: 22 June 2000
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 3985, Smart Structures and Materials 2000: Smart Structures and Integrated Systems, (22 June 2000); doi: 10.1117/12.388858
Show Author Affiliations
Dennis K. Kennedy, Boeing Co. (United States)
Friedrich K. Straub, Boeing Co. (United States)
Lawrence McDonald Schetky, Memry Corp. (United States)
Zaffir A. Chaudhry, Memry Corp. (United States)
Richard Roznoy, RL Design Group (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3985:
Smart Structures and Materials 2000: Smart Structures and Integrated Systems
Norman M. Wereley, Editor(s)

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