Mustang Advanced Engineering recently delivered a highly sophisticated, high-speed Advanced Transmission Test Stand (ATTS) to NASA for development and testing of variable and two speed gearbox systems for rotorcraft aircraft.
The basic configuration consists of two (2) 200 HP, 15,000 RPM variable speed AC motors (with 150% overload capacity) with torque and speed measurement sensors. The MAE system utilizes the latest four quadrant, flux vector, high performance motor drives equipped with common DC buses to provide inertia simulation, and also perform various torque/speed control profiles.
The common DC bus approach allows the power being absorbed from one motor to be utilized by the drive motor. The motors/drives are independtly controlled. The system is designed to provide NASA a high level of flexibilty in test stand configuration, accomadating the three known arrangements and having provisions to allow other future testing requirements.
The test stand will be used for various advanced design and development applications including: Space – NASA’s Rover vehicle drive system used in non-Earth based space vehicle applications. Aero – The Test Stand will be used to test variable speed rotorcraft transmission applications. Land – Testing various new concept manned and unmanned transmission and powertrain systems.
Connected to each dyne’s output shaft is a low inertia, high precision, torque disc to measure the test article’s torque. MAE also supplied a cooling system for the dynes and the test article. The test article oil cooling system consists of a high and low pressure system capable of cooling the oil to user adjustable set-points. The flexible and user configurable control software is based on our industry leading Transmission & Powertrain Dyne Software package allowing the operator various speed, torque, power, polynomial loading, script building, data playback and manual control of the system. The control system is interfaced with MAE’s Non-propriety PLC based control and data acquisition system.
Each motor is provided with vibration detection and temperature monitoring systems. MAE also supplied a PLC based closed loop cooling system for each motor which communicates to the operator interface PC via Ethernet. Each system has the capacity to dissipate approximately 50,000 BTU/hr of heat.
Donald Ganzhorn, Chief Engineer and Executive Vice President of MAE remarks that “NASA is very pleased with the highly accurate control and data acquisition systems as well as the high degree of system flexibility.”
“Mustang is extremely proud to work with NASA on their ATTS project,” said Dean Ganzhorn, Mustang President and CEO. “Mustang’s experience with advanced AC/AC test systems in the aerospace field was key in their decision.”