Embedded Actuation and Sensing System (EASSy) for Gust Load Alleviation

Period of Performance: 04/24/2006 - 04/24/2007


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

TAO of Systems Integration, Inc.
1100 Exploration Way
Hampton, VA 23666
Principal Investigator


Gust loads have a direct impact on the performance, wing structural weight and fatigue life of flight vehicles. Tao Systems proposes to develop an integrated embedded-actuation and (distributed) sensing system (EASSy) to measure, monitor, and control spanwise aerodynamic loading and wing-root bending moment of a flexible wing subjected to gust loads. EASSy will use surface hot-film signatures to measure the aerodynamic environment; active sensor circuit electronics will be used to measure and monitor structural response and accelerations; flight control will be accomplished with embedded actuators. The proposed approach will lead to a reduction in the wing structural weight, suppression of wing flutter, and the wing can be made mission-adaptable to achieve optimized aerodynamic efficiency for maximizing endurance or range of flight vehicles as well as their operational life. Rotorcraft and wind turbines, which face similar problems will also benefit from the innovation.