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Proceedings Paper

Performance characterization of active fiber-composite actuators for helicopter rotor blade applications
Author(s): Viresh K. Wickramasinghe; Nesbitt W. Hagood
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Paper Abstract

The primary objective of this work was to characterize the performance of the Active Fiber Composite (AFC) actuator material system for the Boeing Active Material Rotor (AMR) blade application. The AFCs were a new structural actuator system consisting of piezoceramic fibers embedded in an epoxy matrix and sandwiched between interdigitated electrodes to orient the driving electric field in the fiber direction to use the primary piezoelectric effect. These actuators were integrated directly into the blade spar laminate as active plies within the composite structure to perform structural actuation for vibration control in helicopters. Therefore, it was necessary to conduct extensive electromechanical material characterization to evaluate AFCs both as actuators and as structural components of the rotor blade. The characterization tests designed to extract important electromechanical properties under simulated blade operating conditions included stress-strain tests, free strain tests and actuation under tensile load tests. This paper presents the test results as well as the comprehensive testing process developed to evaluate the relevant AFC material properties. The results from this comprehensive performance characterization of the AFC material system supported the design and operation of the Boeing AMR blade scheduled for hover and forward flight wind tunnel tests.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 July 2002
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 4699, Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Active Materials: Behavior and Mechanics, (11 July 2002); doi: 10.1117/12.474984
Show Author Affiliations
Viresh K. Wickramasinghe, National Research Council Canada (Canada)
Nesbitt W. Hagood, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4699:
Smart Structures and Materials 2002: Active Materials: Behavior and Mechanics
Christopher S. Lynch, Editor(s)

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