Buffalo, N.Y. – Today, Sentient Science announced they were awarded a contract with the Air Force (FA8650-14-M-2499) to develop an add on to their DigitalClone® family of software tools that computationally predict the final stages of material, component, and system life for small and long crack effects for both fixed wing and rotorcraft vehicles.

Sentient Science will be working with the Air Force, to apply DigitalClone modeling technology for the later stages of long crack growth. DigitalClone is able to predict the material microstructural crack size and shape as well as applied loading conditions for the three phases of failure – crack nucleation, small crack, and now long crack propagation. This service is designed to maximize the remaining useful life of components and to predict when and how to remanufacture components before they fail. This will allow the US Air Force to reduce inspection and physical test costs by replacing components at the right time, with the right configuration, and vendor for that machine. This breakthrough will save lives by predicting early component failures.

The technology will be reused in the Power Generation market for the life extension of wind turbine gearboxes and blades to maximize the output per kw/hr and double their 2nd life in remanufacturing through “super configurations”. Wind Turbine Operator, First Wind, expects a 1cent per kw/hr cost of Energy (COE) reduction on Clipper and GE 1.5 Wind Turbine maintenance as a result.

“Our energy customers told us that squeezing every drop of revenue out of wind turbines is critical. Extending the existing investments in gearbox and blade systems is essential in creating value equal to the existing Production Tax Credit (PTC) while lowering carbon emissions,” said, Ward Thomas, President, Sentient Science. “It is remarkable timing that our Air Force customer and Energy customer goals are aligned.”

Sentient Science has over ten years of software development experience in material microstructure modeling, fatigue analysis, and life prediction. Sentient is currently providing their prognostic models to aerospace OEMs and a variety of other industries to design their structures and components more efficiently and execute more accurate performance and life analysis.

“As one of the principles at Altair, I am very impressed with Sentient’s ability to apply computational microstructure-based life prediction and surface engineering capabilities within the DigitalClone software. I have been working with Sentient over the past year and have seen the R&D and customer adoption. Increasing the accuracy of computational fracture mechanics for short and long crack growth is of importance to Altair,” said Brett Chouinard, COO, Altair Engineering.

Sentient Science provides computational performance testing and life extension services to increase the remaining useful life of industrial assets in the energy, heavy machinery, and defense markets. For the first time, Sentient Science is able to calculate the point in time when critical components and systems will begin to fail and make recommendations to extend the life of these components, systems and assets, creating enormous financial value for its customers.

For 12 years under a series of government contracts, Sentient has built and validated its multi-physics prognostics models and is now making these products and services available commercially. Sentient Science, headquartered in Buffalo, NY, has recently won the 2014 Tibbetts Award for the role they play in research and development for the government and for the success they’ve had driving innovation into the asset performance management market.


Natalie Hils

Marketing Programs Manager, Sentient Science



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