3341. A New High Speed Mass Properties Instrument


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Richard Boynton, Otlowski: 3341. A New High Speed Mass Properties Instrument. 2004.



In certain industries the amount of time required to make a measurement of moment of inertia and center of gravity can have a dramatic effect on manufacturing cost. For example, thousands of projectiles are measured every year at some proving grounds. This necessitates operating three shifts and using more than one mass properties instrument at the facility. In an effort to reduce measurement cost, Space Electronics has developed a new mass properties instrument that is at least three times faster than our traditional KSR series instrument that has been used throughout the industry for over thirty years. This new instrument employs a different concept. The old instrument rotated to each of the four quadrants, stopped precisely at the correct angle, and then measured the CG offset moment. This required a variable speed motor drive that slowed down as it approached the correct angle, executed motions to damp out any vibration, and then edged slowly to its final destination. The new instrument coasts to a stop at three approximately equally spaced locations. An extremely precise optical encoder then measures the actual angle while a force-restoration transducer determines the moment to better than 0.01% accuracy. The online computer then uses this data to determine X and Y CG of the object being measured.


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