NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 S5.02-9410
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Planetary Entry, Descent and Landing Technology
PROPOSAL TITLE: Design and Simulation Tools for Planetary Atmospheric Entry Vehicles

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
465 Fairchild Drive, Ste. 224
Mountain View, CA 94043 - 2251
(650) 988-0388

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Leslie A Yates
465 Fairchild Drive, Ste. 224
Mountain View, CA 94043 - 2251
(650) 988-0388

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 3 to 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Atmospheric entry is one of the most critical phases of flight during planetary exploration missions. During the design of an entry vehicle, experimental and analytical methods are used; however, the current integration level of experimental and analytical methods with planetary entry simulations is low. Comprehensive software, comprised of multiple design tool components for simulating planetary entry, analyzing experimental data, and evaluating configuration modifications and control designs, will be developed. The software will be configured so that it can accommodate vehicles ranging from blunt bodies to aircraft-like configurations. Furthermore, the software will be designed as an extension of current aircraft flight dynamics theory so that aerospace engineers with basic flight dynamics knowledge will have an easy transition to entry body flight dynamics. Merging of the aircraft and entry vehicle flight dynamics enables educational institutions to adopt entry vehicle flight dynamics as an extension to current aircraft flight dynamics educational programs. This will promote the education of the next generation of engineers with the basic knowledge of entry flight dynamics. The proposed software will run on a desktop / laptop computer so that proof-of-concept design work can be done easily, efficiently, and at low cost.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
NASA can analyze existing and future designs of atmospheric entry vehicles easily and efficiently. New configurations and concepts, such as aerodynamic active trajectory control systems, can be designed and simulated using the software for risk reduction studies. The software tools will facilitate a better understanding and correlation of data from different experimental test methods, such as free-flight ballistic range tests, helicopter or balloon drop tests, and various wind tunnel tests.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
A current problem for entry vehicle flight dynamics programs is a lack of personnel and successors. Due to a relatively low number of planetary exploration projects requiring entry, descent and landing expertise in the past few decades, many qualified engineers have retired before NASA and other organizations have had a chance to train new staff. Very few universities are currently teaching entry vehicle flight dynamics as a part of a regular curriculum. An educational outreach version of these software tools, with limited functionalities, can be released to universities and students at low cost. This release will encourage the training of a new generation of entry flight dynamics engineers.

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.

Data Acquisition and End-to-End-Management
Database Development and Interfacing
Expert Systems
Simulation Modeling Environment
Software Tools for Distributed Analysis and Simulation
Testing Requirements and Architectures

Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50