Pod Mechanical Power Production

Period of Performance: 05/14/2008 - 11/14/2008

$150K

Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Streamline Automation, LLC
3100 Fresh Way SW Array
Huntsville, AL 35805
Principal Investigator

Abstract

NAVAIR has developed the next generation electronic attack platform, the EA-18G Growler aircraft, as a replacement for the venerable EA-6B to effectively provide electronic attack and jammer escort for current Navy aircraft (F/A-18) and future aircraft (JSF). When the EA-18G enters service it will be equipped with ALQ-99 jammer pods that were initially designed for the EA-6 in the late 1960's. NAVAIR recognizes the limitations inherent in continuing to upgrade the ALQ-99, and, has identified a need for a Next Generation Jammer Pod with capabilities matched to the EA-18G. The NGJ Pod will be powered by an on-board turbine / generator to make the pod independent from aircraft power sources. The pod will require a minimum of 60 KVA of power generated at an airspeed of 250 knots, with the turbine/generator located within the body of the pod. The key metrics for pod power generation are weight and volume efficiency. An ideal solution for this application is a Tesla turbine, a tangential in-flow machine, that packages well, and requires only a short length of ducting to route air into the turbine. The proposed Phase 1 effort will focus in designing and testing a demonstration unit, to be followed by full-scale prototype fabrication and testing in Phase 2.