Embedded Health Monitoring Sensor Systems and Ultrasonic Acoustic Detection

Period of Performance: 04/21/2006 - 08/21/2007


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Nanosonic, Inc.
158 Wheatland Drive Array
Pembroke, VA 24136
Principal Investigator


NanoSonic proposes to develop sensors for the health-monitoring of F-35/Joint Strike Fighter through this Air Force SBIR program. During Phase I, NanoSonic would design and fabricate novel nanostructured thin film sensors formed by Electrostatic Self-Assembly (ESA) to detect material deterioration of strike fighter components. With recent success in the development of conductive polymer based nanostructured sensors, NanoSonic would like to extend the work to specialized sensors and implement those into coatings and materials. NanoSonic has also been able to fabricate new multifunctional nanostructured materials that have high electrical conductivity and low weight, that can be used as an in-situ sensor for detecting breakdown of surface coatings. Ultrasonic actuation using these ESA coated sensors and transducers will serve as a prognostic technique in determining the fatigue state and lifetime of large area structures. NanoSonic has established techniques to control multiple constitutive material properties in coatings and free-standing organic/inorganic thin and thick materials using molecular ESA processes, by varying the type, size, and structure of incorporated molecules. The sensor elements may be incorporated into the coating by patterning or ink-jet printing. Integrating co-located interconnected circuits into the coating would allow for remote mapping of the coating properties and determination of fatigue microstructures.