The detection and mitigation of electric motor faults is vital to the safety and reliability of Urban Air Mobility (UAM) vehicles using electric propulsion. The proposed research aims to advance the state of the art of motor fault resilience research relevant to the NASA Revolutionary Vertical Lift Technology (RVLT) Project in two aspects: (1) develop fault resilience measures appropriate to the motor drive systems used in RVLT, and (2) study the tradeoffs between fault resilience and other motor drive system performance metrics such as weight and efficiency. Phase I research will explore fault resilience measures using analytical methods such as modeling and simulation. The Phase II research will expand the scope of fault resilience measures considered and will validate the research findings with hardware experiments.
The direct NASA application for the proposed research is the Revolutionary Vertical Lift Technology (RVLT) Project. The research will also contribute to other programs in the NASA Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) where electric propulsion is used. Other potential NASA applications include spacecraft and lunar bases, where fault resilience will increase system reliability due to the time and cost involved in motor replacements in these settings.
The findings of the proposed research can potentially be applied to any system where motor fault resilience provides safety, reliability, or other benefit. Some examples of such applications include hybrid and electrical vehicles, and industrial electrical drive systems.