NASA SBIR 2005 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER:05 X2.02-7984
SUBTOPIC TITLE:Structures and Habitats
PROPOSAL TITLE:Ultra-Lightweight Self-Deployable SMP Nanocomposite Sandwich for Habitat Applications

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Wright Materials Research Co
1187 Richfield Center
Beavercreek ,OH 45430 - 1120
(937) 431 - 8811

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Seng   Tan
sctan@sprintmail.com
1187 Richfield Center
Beavercreek, OH  45430 -1120
(937) 431 - 8811

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (LIMIT 200 WORDS)
Space deployable and rigidizable structures that are ultra-lightweight, and have gas barrier property, space durability, and high impact resistance are desirable to improve the reliability and launching cost of space habitat structures. Some of the components currently in use such as shelters or habitats use double-wall thick films with high internal pressure. All these hollow components are vulnerable in space because of the debris and meteorites that can strike them. They will lose their functions if hit and damaged by foreign objects. These structures typically rely upon electro-mechanical mechanisms and devices for deployment and maintaining them in space for operation, which occupy over 90% of the total mass budget in many cases. In this Phase I project, we propose to develop ultra-lightweight, self-deployable microcellular foamed sandwich structures from nanocomposite shape memory polymers (SMP) and CHEM deployed technique as structural components of space habitats. Such a structural module can be compacted into a very small volume to facilitate launching. The deployment energy is the heat from the sun. This concept greatly simplifies the entire operation, reduction in weight and cost, and improves reliability. They also feature great impact resistant. Foams processed by the conventional chemical-blowing agent have toxicity problems. Our microcellular SMP foamed sandwich structures do not involve any toxicity and will have higher mechanical properties than those processed by the conventional techniques. They can be used to replace or supplement to the inflatable technology.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
The proposed ultra-lightweight microcellular nanocomposite foamed sandwich structures from SMP/CHEM have a number of potential applications for space structures including space habitats, rigidified boom and support structures for Gossamer space structures, rover subsystems like wheels, chasis, insulation boxes masts, solar array deployment devices, shelters and hangars for space habitats, airlocks, electronics boxes, tanks/shells/shields, insulation for propellant tanks, solar arrays radar boards, and support structures for telecommunication subsystems like struts and beams, etc.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (LIMIT 150 WORDS)
Shape memory polymers are fairly recently developed functional polymers that find applications in a broad range of temperature sensing elements. Shape memory gels have been explored to perform various functions including artificial muscles and organs, drug-delivery devices, chemical valves, and actuators. Additional potential applications may include self-deployable tanks, coolers/thermoses, construction, toys, automotive components, thermal insulation, packaging, impact energy absorption products, filters, high damping sound and electromagnetic shielding.

NASA's technology taxonomy has been developed by the SBIR-STTR program to disseminate awareness of proposed and awarded R/R&D in the agency. It is a listing of over 100 technologies, sorted into broad categories, of interest to NASA.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING
Composites
Earth-Supplied Resource Utilization
Erectable
General Public Outreach
Inflatable
Kinematic-Deployable
Launch and Flight Vehicle
Multifunctional/Smart Materials
Radiation Shielding Materials
Reuseable
Thermal Insulating Materials


Form Printed on 09-19-05 13:12