NASA SBIR 2004 Solicitation


PROPOSAL TITLE:Low-Power, Lightweight Cloud Water Content Sensor

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Anasphere, Inc.
6597 Maltse Lane, Unit D
Bozeman ,MT 59718 - 6954
(406) 994 - 9354

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
John   Bognar
6597 Maltse Lane, Unit D
Bozeman, MT  59718 -6954
(406) 994 - 9354

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
The measurement of cloud water content is of great importance in understanding the formation of clouds, their structure, and their radiative properties which in turn affect the climate. While a variety of sensors exist for making these measurements, all of the existing sensors require far too much power or other energy input to be used on small platforms with limited payloads such as UAVs, balloons, and kites. Anasphere has, in Phase I work, clearly demonstrated the feasibility of an entirely new technique for the in-situ measurement of cloud water content. The new sensor is lightweight (under 40 g), consumes very little power (the sensor can run for days on one 9-volt battery), and is very inexpensive.

Phase II work will focus on refining the sensor design from both mechanical and electronic perspectives, completing extensive laboratory and field tests of the improved sensors, and delivering several examples to NASA. Two sequential cycles of design improvement, laboratory testing, and flight testing are envisioned. Samples of the sensors will be sent to NASA as part of each flight testing cycle.

The Phase II effort will culminate in the availability of a simple and inexpensive cloud water content sensor for cloud research. This sensor will be very useful to scientists studying cloud formation and structure. It will enable such scientists to inexpensively obtain in-situ data that previously was obtained only through the use of an expensive research aircraft flying through the cloud.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA has many scientists engaged in cloud research and cloud-related remote sensing technology development. Both of these groups of scientists will greatly benefit from the new sensor, as they will now be able to inexpensively obtain in-situ data in support of their research. Flying numerous radiosondes with the cloud water content sensors will be far more inexpensive and responsive than preplanned flights by large research aircraft. Ultimately, the sensors will aid in developing a greater understanding of cloud formation, structure, and properties, as well as in the development of remote-sensing technologies for studying the same topics.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The same benefits and uses described above that apply to NASA scientists will apply to all scientists engaged in cloud research who may also be found in universities, private companies engaged in cloud research (likely as part of remote sensing technology development), and other Federal agencies such as NOAA.

Form Printed on 08-01-05 13:52