NASA SBIR 2002 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER:02-II B3.06-9611 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 022388 )
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Radiation Shielding to Protect Humans
PROPOSAL TITLE: Interfacing Design Code and Simulation Code for Biological Shielding

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN: (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/ZIP, Phone)
Alternative Energy Solutions, Inc.
PO Box 230269
Boston , MA   02123 - 0269
(617 ) 373 - 2941

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER: (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/ZIP, Phone)
Tom Paul
c/o AES, PO Box 230269
Boston , MA   02123 - 0269
(617 ) 365 - 4363

The purpose of this project is to continue developing tools to match existing Computer Assisted Design (CAD) software to Geant4 with a special view to shielding simulations for NASA.

Geant4 is a particle transport and interaction simulation toolkit,originally developed to help with Monte Carlo simulations of high energy physics experiments. It represents decades of development and is the standard tool for experimental particle physics simulations. In another SBIR Phase I project AES had already established its level of suitability for the simulation of space radiation shielding to protect astronauts. Geant4, however, represents geometry in its own format which is not immediately
compatible with standard CAD programs which generally lack critical information for radiation simulation such as composition of materials.

Based on experience in Phase I, we plan to continue developing an XML framework plus associated tools supporting both CAD (STEP) format and Geant4, plus a rich variety of extensions which offer significant flexibility in terms of the ability to track accounting, assembly, quality, and countless other parameters with no interference with the main physics/engineering tasks. This could prove invaluable in attempts to better understand equipment and mission failures, optimize maintenance and repair schedules, and generally improve reliability.

For NASA the primary interest is in the augmentation of CAD (STEP) format data with information which allows radiation effects simulations with Geant4 to be carried out. That said, the results of our Phase I research have made it clear that the needed flexibility and extendability is also ideally suited to allow arbitrary augmentations of CAD data. Recent events have underlined to us, the potential value of a fully extensible data description. For example, in the case of failure (either catastrophic, or simple wear and tear leading to replacements) there would be clear value in having the geometrical description of the constructed object contain information on the components which might not seem of immediate interest to a physicist or engineer.

Within the particular scope of making it easier to handle radiation simulations, we expect to find major applications in fields in which shielding and dosimetry are important such as commercial space applications, reactor design, medical radiology, etc. The general ability to augment CAD-produced data, and in fact the general proposed XML framework for a fully extensible format is potentially applicable to any CAD user, as well as to anyone wanting to manage almost any conceivable process or engineered device.

Form Printed on 10-03-03 11:34