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Agustawestland has used HBM’s data-acquisition equipment to test the undercarriage of the future Lynx naval helicopter to ensure good operational landing performance.

The Lynx – with a maximum take-off weight of 6,000kg – is a twin-engine, multi-role aircraft used by the British Army and the Royal Navy.

A total of 34 test conditions needed to be met to ensure the undercarriage could meet and exceed landing forces on military ships, such as frigates, where the combined forces of wind and waves usually make landing more demanding than on land.

These tests had to be carried out on both the front undercarriage – which supports two wheels on the helicopter’s centre line – and the rear undercarriage – which supports a single wheel, situated either side of the main fuselage.

Drop tests, onto both level and sloping surfaces, were carried out at Agustawestland’s UK headquarters in Yeovil, Somerset, using a purpose-built test rig.

The rig was fitted with 12 sensors to capture a variety of signals, including gas pressure, oil pressure, ground-reaction forces, strut closure, tyre deflection and total distance travelled.

Agustawestland used HBM’s QuantumX MX840 to capture the data, along with HBM’s Catman AP data-acquisition and analysis software, to provide an initial overview of the test data, which was then exported and analysed separately.

‘We selected the MX840 because we could plug anything into it quite easily and it has an excellent recording capacity both in terms of the recording span and the rate,’ said Matt Williams, a senior structural test engineer.

Each drop test involves eight seconds of recording at 4,800Hz, although the actual drop lasts less than three seconds.

There is then approximately an hour between each test for analysis and reconfiguration of the test rig.

‘We use HBM’s Catman AP software to give a broad analytical overview after each test and then we export the data to Excel for more detailed analysis,’ finished Williams.

HBM is a global market leader in test and measurement, and weighing technologies.Our state-of-the-art, innovative products set standards for precision throughout the world

HBM supply a wide range of instrumentation including: strain gauges; transducers for torque / force / weight / displacement / pressure & acceleration; data acquisitions systems; industrial electronics; laboratory & calibration electronics and analysis & control software

Whatever your measurement needs, whatever your industry, whether in: automotive, aerospace, rail, energy, transport, construction, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, chemicals, petrochemicals and weighing, HBM can assist throughout your entire measurement chain

HBM also offer a range of additional services alongside its products, including: on-site technical support; training & seminars; verification and calibration; support & maintenance contracts, and stress measurement services

HBM operates 24 subsidiaries and sales offices in Europe, the Americas and Asia with approximately 1,200 employees.In addition, the company is represented in a further 40 countries worldwide

R&D and production facilities are located in Darmstadt, Germany, as well as in Marlborough, MA, U.S.A.and Suzhou in China

HBM is wholly owned subsidiary of Spectris plc, the specialist technology-based instrumentation and electronics controls company

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