PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to design an electromechanical actuator which can inherently tolerate a stuck or loose failure without any need for fault detection isolation and reconfiguration.Design/methodology/approachGeneralized design methodology for a thrust vector control application is adopted to reduce the design iterations during the initial stages of the design. An optimum ball screw pitch is selected to minimize the motor sizing and maximize the load acceleration.FindingsA high redundancy electromechanical actuator for thrust vector control has lower self-inertia and higher reliability than a direct drive simplex configuration. This configuration is a feasible solution for thrust vector control application because it offers a more acceptable and graceful degradation than a complete failure.Research limitations/implicationsFuture work will include testing on actual hardware to study the transient disturbances caused by a fault and their effect on launch vehicle dynamics.Practical implicationsHigh redundancy electromechanical actuator concept can be extended to similar applications such as solid motor nozzle in satellite launch vehicles and primary flight control system in aircraft.Social implicationsHigh redundancy actuators can be useful in safety critical applications involving human beings. It can also reduce the machine downtime in industrial process automation.Originality/valueThe jam tolerant electromechanical actuator proposed for the launch vehicle application has a unique configuration which does not require a complex fault detection isolation and reconfiguration logic in the controller. This enhances the system reliability and allows a simplex controller having a lower cost.
Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology – Emerald Publishing
Published: Sep 2, 2019
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