NASA STTR 2003 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:03-T6.01-9934 (For NASA Use Only - Chron: 030066)
RESEARCH SUBTOPIC TITLE:Batteryless, Wireless Remote Sensors
PROPOSAL TITLE:PASSIVE WIRELESS MULTI-SENSOR TEMPERATURE AND PRESSURE SENSING SYSTEM USING ACOUSTIC WAVE DEVICES

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (SBC): RESEARCH INSTITUTION (RI):
NAME: Microsensor Systems Inc. NAME:University of Central Florida
ADDRESS:62 Corporate Court ADDRESS:Office of Research, 12443 Research Parkway, Suite 207
CITY:Bowling Green CITY:Orlando
STATE/ZIP:KY  42103-6673 STATE/ZIP:FL  32826-3252
PHONE: (270) 745-0099 PHONE: (407) 823-0138

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name,Email)
Jacqueline   Hines
jhines@ieee.org
U.S. Citizen or Legal Resident: Yes

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
This proposal describes the development of passive surface acoustic wave (SAW) sensors and multi-sensor systems for NASA application to remote wireless sensing of temperature and pressure distributions in space vehicles and demanding environments. SAW devices are a mature technology used in numerous commercial wireless communication applications, satellites, and military systems. Research into the use of SAW devices as solid-state physical sensors is a relatively recent development, with potential emerging applications such as automotive tire pressure sensing. Much of the work reported has focused on single sensor devices and systems, with little work done on dense multi-sensor systems. The system proposed herein consists of multiple passive solid-state SAW sensors that can be interrogated remotely using RF signals, and that respond with a signal that encodes both the sensor's identity as well as measurements of temperature and pressure. The proposed research will study several innovative aspects of SAW sensor technology, including: new piezoelectric materials which can operate over large temperature ranges; new SAW device embodiments for measurement of temperature and pressure and their wireless transmission in multi-sensor environments; transceiver design and optimization given the SAW operating parameters; and innovative packaging and antenna considerations for rugged, small devices.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
The primary NASA application for the proposed sensor system would be measurement of the temperature and pressure distribution just under the outer surface of NGLT vehicles for enhancement of IVHM systems. Due to wireless operation of the sensors, the system might also be retrofitted to the shuttle or future OSP vehicles, or be used for tire pressure monitoring. Numerous small, lightweight sensors could be mounted under or within the thermal protective layer of the vehicle, and an internal RF interrogation system could quickly scan through the sensors, providing rapid temperature and pressure distribution information at the surface of the vehicle.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
Potential commercial applications for the proposed sensor system include automotive tire pressure sensing, monitoring temperature and other parameters in motors, furnaces, and other high temperature environments, and shipping container and inventory thermal monitoring. The proposed sensor system provides advantages in S/N ratio and device identification not yet realized in commercial devices under development for automotive tire pressure sensing. The ability to uniquely identify large numbers of individual sensors, combined with a hand-held interrogation system, could make this approach useful for homeland security container screening and for inventory purposes where knowing the temperature history of a set of products is significant.