A New Sensor Approach to an Attitude/Heading Reference System 830759

This paper describes a strapdown attitude/heading reference system (AHRS) designed to provide significant advancements in weight, volume, and cost. As such, it may be expected to replace conventional gyroscopic devices in transport category aircraft used in business aviation and government applications.
In addition to unusual design objectives in the areas of weight, volume, and cost, the AHRS has met requirements for performance and reliability that equal or exceed that which would typically be experienced with the array of separate gyros and accelerometers which it can replace.
These design achievements have been made possible by employing a new technology rate/acceleration sensor. The sensing principle is based on the fact that spinning piezoelectric elements measure coriolis accelerations which are proportional to applied rates. Additional piezoelectrical elements permit the sensing of linear accelerations as well. The efficiency of combined rate and acceleration sensing, the high accuracy levels obtained, and the inherent simplicity of the design make this multisensor especially attractive for the AHRS application.
Extensive environmental and flight test results have verified the basic measurement concept and shown that all design objectives have been achieved.


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