Design of a Five-Axis Load Cell for Submerged Wing Testing in an Oil Tank

Report No. ARL-TR-5843
Authors: John Gerdes
Date/Pages: December 2011; 30 pages
Abstract: The design of a load cell utilizing the bending beam principle is presented. The load cell measures the forces and moments created by a flapping wing submerged in an oil tank. The design process is described starting with an overview of the design methodology and the conceptual design. The functional and geometric constraints are then identified. Performance requirements are used to optimize the load cell geometry and detail the conceptual design. The electrical circuit design is described in detail, including the design of the bridge circuits used, gauge placement, and corrections applied to account for thermal, drift, and zero loading errors. Finite-element simulations are presented to justify the locations of the gauges on the load cell. The manufacturing and installation process is described, as well as required future work including calibration and testing of the load cell.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: December 1, 2011