8 April 2013 Development of sensing techniques for weaponry health monitoring
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Due to the costliness of destructive evaluation methods for assessing the aging and shelf-life of missile and rocket components, the identification of nondestructive evaluation methods has become increasingly important to the Army. Verifying that there is a sufficient concentration of stabilizer is a dependable indicator that the missile’s double-based solid propellant is viable. The research outlined in this paper summarizes the Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center’s (AMRDEC’s) comparative use of nanoporous membranes, carbon nanotubes, and optical spectroscopic configured sensing techniques for detecting degradation in rocket motor propellant. The first sensing technique utilizes a gas collecting chamber consisting of nanoporous structures that trap the smaller solid propellant particles for measurement by a gas analysis device. In collaboration with NASA-Ames, sensing methods are developed that utilize functionalized single-walled carbon nanotubes as the key sensing element. The optical spectroscopic sensing method is based on a unique light collecting optical fiber system designed to detect the concentration of the propellant stabilizer. Experimental setups, laboratory results, and overall effectiveness of each technique are presented in this paper. Expectations are for the three sensing mechanisms to provide nondestructive evaluation methods that will offer cost-savings and improved weaponry health monitoring.
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Eugene Edwards, Eugene Edwards, Paul B. Ruffin, Paul B. Ruffin, Ebonee A. Walker, Ebonee A. Walker, Christina L. Brantley, Christina L. Brantley, "Development of sensing techniques for weaponry health monitoring", Proc. SPIE 8691, Nanosensors, Biosensors, and Info-Tech Sensors and Systems 2013, 869101 (8 April 2013); doi: 10.1117/12.2009126; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2009126

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