The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs are highly competitive programs that encourage domestic small businesses to engage in Federal Research/Research and Development (R/R&D) with the potential for commercialization. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR and STTR enable small businesses to explore their technological potential and provide the incentive to profit from its commercialization. By including qualified small businesses in the nation's R&D arena, high-tech innovation is stimulated, and the United States gains entrepreneurial spirit as it meets its specific research and development needs.

Picture of the Reactor in the UPT laboratory

2021: UPT awarded Phase I SBIR

Corrosion, fretting, and wear poses a serious threat to Navy aircraft safety and functionality. Splines on the proprotor masts of the V-22 Osprey are plagued with these issues and the process for their inspection and repair is difficult and time consuming, taking hours and requiring removal of the proprotors.

United Protective Technologies (UPT) will develop the Rapid Spline Scanning System (RS3) to solve this problem and provide an easy to use, accurate inspection system that will reduce inspection and repair time by 50%, and provide data tracking capability.

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The inspection system will have no moving parts, and it will scan a full set of spline teeth within 3 minutes. A laptop will provide viewing and analysis of the 3D results with a precision of at least 0.0005”, thus providing confidence that inspections and repairs are done correctly to ensure flight worthiness of the aircraft.  

To develop the RS3, UPT will draw upon its experience developing the EVIAC high-speed vision system for Black Hawk rotor blade analysis, and the R-BAT hand-held measurement device for measuring rotor blade Nickel strip wear. In addition, the core team for this project has many years of combined experience in this field.

The Principle Investigator has industrial vision system experience, along with experience in statistical analysis, and reducing gage variation. Our Senior Scientist has developed image processing and analysis algorithms, and our Technical Advisor has 25 years of experience in the inspection metrology space.

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