Power Replenishment Patch for Spacecraft Health Monitoring Sensors

Period of Performance: 01/01/2006 - 12/31/2006

$70K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Metis Design Corp.
205 Portland St Array
Boston, MA 02114
Principal Investigator

Abstract

Metis Design Corporation (MDC) proposes the development of a strain-based power replenishment technology to harvest energy for recharging remote sensors. MDC has been working to development of a structural health monitoring (SHM) device, which essentially evolves the embedding of sets of sensors into a structure to allow continuous remote monitoring. MDC's work is aimed at developing a robust infrastructure package to support a variety of sensor types and detection methods for aerospace structures. Components have been developed to acquire data, excite transducers, store and wirelessly transmit data, as well as a thin-film battery and packaging to protect the electronics from moisture, EMI and impact. During the course of this SBIR, MDC will work to develop a power replenishment patch that uses piezoelectric technology coupled with an innovative circuit design to "top-off" SHM system batteries. These thin patches would be intimately bonded to the structure in order to harvest strain energy to recharge a thin-film Lithium battery slowly over time. This concept is unique since it takes advantage of the low duty cycle of SHM electronics, instead of attempting to harvest energy for continuous system operation. MDC will demonstrate the ability to performing structural integrity testing using only harvested power.