Release Date
August 23rd, 2023
Open Date
September 20th, 2023
Due Date(s)
October 18th, 2023
Close Date
October 18th, 2023
Topic No.


Aircraft Vibration Harvester (AVH)


Department of DefenseN/A


Type: SBIRPhase: BOTHYear: 2023


The Department of Defense (DoD) is seeking proposals for the topic "Aircraft Vibration Harvester (AVH)" as part of the SBIR 23.3 BAA. The objective is to develop and manufacture an energy harvesting system for use in airborne applications. The current process of installing instrumentation systems on flight-test aircrafts is time-consuming and requires extensive downtime. The proposed technology aims to generate electrical power near instrumentation sensors, reducing the need for dedicated wiring and minimizing aircraft downtimes. The system must have specific capabilities, including a self-tunable frequency range, output voltage, and power, while complying with Air Force standards and environmental testing. The AVH system should be available for flight testing at least 6 months prior to the end of the project duration. Phase I awards will not be made for this topic, as it is a Direct-to-Phase-II (D2P2) topic. Phase II involves developing and manufacturing the energy harvesting system to withstand airborne environments associated with high-performance military aircraft. The goal is to achieve a Technical Readiness Level (TRL) of 6 based on Air Force standards. In Phase III, the technology can have both military and commercial applications, providing electrical power generation for wireless sensors in airborne applications and harvesting energy in commercial environments such as the auto industry. The solicitation is closed, and more information can be found on the DoD SBIR 23.3 BAA website.


OUSD (R&E) CRITICAL TECHNOLOGY AREA(S): Advanced Computing and Software;Integrated Sensing and Cyber


OBJECTIVE: Develop and manufacture an energy harvesting system to be used in airborne applications.


DESCRIPTION: Current solutions for installing instrumentation systems on flight-test aircrafts are time consuming, consist of large amounts of cabling, and require extensive aircraft downtimes. Generating electrical power near instrumentation sensors reduces the need to install wiring dedicated for power.  Also, locally generated power can be used to power wireless systems that can wirelessly connect the sensor to the data acquisition system.  Thus, reducing the need to install dedicated signal wiring for the sensor.  Reducing the need for dedicated power and sensor wiring will reduce aircraft downtimes during instrumentation installations. Previous research has demonstrated an energy harvesting system that included a piezoelectric structure with a power conditioning circuit.   Any solutions must have the following capabilities: 1. Self-tunable frequency range of 85 Hz to 200 Hz 2. Output voltage of 12 to 28 VDC 3. Output power of 650 mW to 9500 mW 4. Comply with Air Force Airworthiness standards 5. Comply with Air Force environmental testing  The AVH system will be available for flight testing at least 6 months prior to the end of the Period of Performance.  The system shall be at a Technical Readiness Level (TRL) of 6 at this time.  If a test aircraft is available, the 812 Aircraft Instrumentation Test Squadron will be responsible for installing the energy harvesting system in the test aircraft.


PHASE I: As this is a Direct-to-Phase-II (D2P2) topic, no Phase I awards will be made as a result of this topic. To qualify for this D2P2 topic, the Government expects the applicant to demonstrate feasibility by means of a prior “Phase I-type” effort that does not constitute work undertaken as part of a prior SBIR/STTR funding agreement.   No Phase I SBIR is necessary as this topic is intended to compete for a Direct-to-Phase-2 (D2P2) topic. The ability to test the proof-of-concept directly on an aircraft and increase the Test Readiness Level (TRL) based off the existing findings and developments is fundamental, which can only be implemented through a D2P2. Furthermore, testing and evaluating the system is highly desired in this environment and needs to be executed for refining parameters, increasing the overall system power generation, and interfacing with sensors in a relevant application. Flight worthiness is crucial for this design; deliverables include being able to demonstrate the feasibility in converting vibrations similar in amplitude to an aircraft’s and generate energy through sufficient studies, analysis of solutions, and lab experiments/procedures.


PHASE II: Develop and manufacture an energy harvesting system that can withstand airborne environments associated with high performance military aircraft. Obtain a TRL of 6 based on Air Force standards and ready to test in an airborne operational environment.


PHASE III DUAL USE APPLICATIONS: Military Application:  Energy harvesting system to provide electrical power generation to be used for wireless sensors in an airborne application. Commercial Application: Harvest energy in commercial environments, such as in the auto industry or other vehicular applications.



Samson, D.; Energy Harvesting for Autonomous Wireless Sensor Nodes in Aircraft.  Procedia Engineering, Sept 2010 ; 
Seah, W.; Wireless Sensor Networks Powered by Ambient Energy Harvesting (WSN-HEAP) – Survey and Challenges. Institute for Infocomm Research, May 2009


KEYWORDS: Energy Harvester; Aircraft Energy Harvester; Aerospace Energy Harvester; Piezoelectric; Vibration Energy; Vibration Harvester; Aircraft Power Piezoelectric; Sensor Vibration Harvester