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Frazer-Nash completes power managment modelling contract with Rolls-Royce

Leading engineering consultancy Frazer-Nash has completed a contract with Rolls-Royce to undertake a power management system modelling programme for its ASTRAEA II (Autonomous Systems Technology Related Airborne Evaluation & Assessment) project.

Part of the programme, (funded by the Technology Strategy Board (TSB) and Rolls-Royce), saw Frazer-Nash use its modelling expertise in the Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs) sector to help balance and optimise the power demands of the flight system across the length of a mission. 

Increased platform capability and the complexity of unmanned vehicles demands higher levels of power, control and monitoring. There is an industry-wide desire to understand more clearly the key technologies behind the unmanned, autonomous operation of these complex systems and how they can be most effectively managed.

Rolls-Royce appointed Frazer-Nash to provide modelling support for the development of the automated Power Management System (PMS) as part of the ASTRAEA II project, which predicts the energy requirement for a mission, and plans and optimises power usage.

Using its system modelling capabilities, Frazer-Nash supported the power management work looking at the external and internal demands being put on the aircraft system, such as electrical loads and fuel systems, and how these signals were analysed and amalgamated with a view to improving the overall performance, as well as mitigating risk and reducing costs.

The programme concluded with a UAV demonstration whereby one engine was running in real time to test the effectiveness of the power management system. The work aims to deliver a number of benefits for future platforms including improved energy consumption, reduction in the number of power sources required and helping to reduce through-life operating costs. 

Chris Jones, Consultant at Frazer-Nash, said: “We are delighted to have been working with Rolls-Royce on its ASTRAEA II project through this contract. We have been able to use our systems modelling expertise in this area to provide Rolls-Royce with support in developing a power management solution that has progressed technology towards a number of significant benefits and savings for this complex and innovative project.” 

 Pauli Markkanen, Research and Technology Programme Manager at Rolls-Royce, said: “The ASTRAEA programme has been ground breaking and successful in assisting the development of intelligent power technologies. Frazer-Nash Consultancy has made an important contribution to our systems development of this advanced research.”

Press release issued by Frazer-Nash Consultancy Ltd on September 18, 2013


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