GPMS has secured a patent related to its Foresight prognostic health management system for helicopters and rotating industrial equipment, making it the fifth patent related to the GPMS system, and the thirtieth patent by GPMS founder and inventor, Dr. Eric Bechhoefer. This most recent patent is focused on the system and method for generation of a tachometer signal and reduction of jitter to improve the quality of data related to gear fault analysis. Previous related patents include integrated hanger bearing design, a method for determining blade track height, and a method for generating a tach signal from vibration.
To date, most research published on gear fault analysis techniques has been based on the time synchronous average (TSA), which is based on tachometer zero cross times for a key phasor. As a result, the analyses are dependent on the quality of the tachometer data. As a leader in the fields of prognostic health management, HUMS, and condition monitoring, Dr. Bechhoefer recognized that, because the tachometer signal has a constant jitter due to electrical noise, magnetic noise, or manufacturing spacing error of the tachometer target, the data quality of the TSA was not optimally concise and ultimately did not accurately reflect the performance of gear condition indicators, impacting performance and maintenance of equipment.
The GPMS Foresight system includes a novel zero-phase filter that reduces tachometer jitter, thereby producing large improvements in fault detection and enabling the delivery of concise, actionable information about current mechanical and operational issues, as well as predictive information on timeframes for upcoming required maintenance to minimize unplanned downtime.
“Our exclusive approach to gear fault analysis and detection is a critical component in the safety, ROI and lifespan of equipment,” says Dr. Bechhoefer. “GPMS’s dedication to the modernization and precision of HUMS drives our innovation and ability to deliver game-changing solutions for the aviation industry. We are proud to have five patents and counting, underscoring the technical depth behind our Foresight system.”
The company says their Foresight MX offers a full scope of functionality including mechanical diagnostics and prognostics, engine performance monitoring, exceedance monitoring, flight regime recognition, automated data acquisition, and automated, optimized solutions for rotor, track and balance. The system reduces operational costs through advanced notification of impending maintenance requirements while adhering to budget, space and weight constraints of operators. On a typical light helicopter, Foresight MX weighs in at less than nine pounds including all hardware, cable, and mounting components, and provides automatic alerting through email and SMS and an intuitive, simple user interface accessible through a standard web browser on a laptop, desktop, tablet or cell phone.