NASA SBIR 00-II Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 17.04-8668 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 001333 )
PROPOSAL TITLE: Switched Emissivity Changes via Electrostatic Attraction

This Phase II SBIR proposal will fabricate and deliver (for the ST-5 satellite) 4 space-qualified variable emissivity devices based on the ESR approach. This approach promises very low cost and high performance over competing technologies along with a very significant reduction in weight (~500 gm/sq. meter) In addition, during the Phase II, process improvement should result in a device with an electrically switchable emissivity range of .8.
The approach works as a thermal switch, changing the mode of heat transfer from conduction (high heat loss) to radiation (low heat low). During the Phase I, heat loss measurements in a vacuum produced changes in effective emissivity as high as .74. The units to be fabricated for the Phase II will have more moderate performance to ensure high repeatability., but will still have changes in emissivity of .5.
The ESR has low power consumption with very simple control electronics. Applying a high (200-500) volts turns it on producing a high e state; shorting it produces a low e state, with the device performing as a high quality capacitor (~ 400 pfd/cm2). The device is basically an off-on switch, but segmenting the area gives digital control on the emissivity to control temperature.

The ESR is a new and novel product. The only market for its application is for spacecraft that require switchable radiation for temperature control in applications where power and weight conservation are important. Technologies currently utilized for these applications (primarily mechanical louvers), are complex, cumbersome and expensive. Thus, the characteristic light weight and simple active control required of the ESR will be a significant advantage for space applications with tight requirements on temperature control.

NAME AND ADDRESS OF PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR (Name, Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)
William Biter
Sensortex, Inc.
515 Schoolhouse Road
Kennett Square , PA   19348 - 1741

NAME AND ADDRESS OF OFFEROR (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)
Sensortex, Inc.
515 Schoolhouse Road
Kennett Square , PA   19348 - 1741

Form Printed on 11-26-01 17:18