NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-1 X4.01-9834
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Space Suit Pressure Garment and Airlock Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Hard Upper Torso Shoulder Joint Design for Crew Member Sizing Adjustment and Enhanced Mobility

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Air-Lock, Inc.
Wampus Lane
Milford, CT 06460 - 4845
(203) 878-4691

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ralph A. Toscano
108 Gulf Street
Milford, CT 06460 - 4845
(203) 878-4691

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 2 to 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Air-Lock, Incorporated proposes to design an Enhanced Shoulder Mobility Joint Assembly (ESMJA) that increases dynamic mobility and static sizing capabilities for spacesuited crewmembers (CM) employing a Hard Upper Torso (HUT). The proposed shoulder joint will allow historically fixed Hard Upper Torsos to be sized in-situ by crewmembers of varying anthropometries. The Shoulders will also increase CM range of motion in a pressurized spacesuit and incorporate must mitigating strategies geared towards lunar exploration. Throughout Phase One, Air-Lock will exhibit the following innovations:

• Design pressure sealed ESMJA that optimizes mobility and sizing characteristics of Hard Upper Torso Advanced Planetary Spacesuits.
• Utilize 3D CAD software to design, develop and integrate the ESMJA with the MK-III HUT.
• Perform a materials evaluation in order to determine the lightest, most robust material to be use in the manufacture of the ESMJA.
• Create a matrix highlighting sizing potential and added mobility (i.e., range of motion).
• Perform a comparative analysis of the sizing and mobility matrix to historic NASA anthropometry data to determine the optimum HUT sizes required to outfit current NASA astronaut corp.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Due to the highly specialized nature of the proposed design effort, extending the application of the Enhanced Shoulder Mobility Joint Assembly outside of pressure suits is unlikely. More feasible applications can be realized through the improved manufacturing techniques developed during Phase II. Reducing mass of historically metallic structures via composite, structural plastics or urethanes have been achieved in the past but proved to be very costly. Air-Lock plans to develop manufacturing techniques that would allow the molding of complicated geometries to "near net shape" to realize cost reduction of lightweight, robust structures.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The recent increase in commercial space business ventures (Virgin Galactic, Commercial Orbital Transportation Services, (i.e., COTS), Bigelow Aerospace, etc.) would present excellent opportunities to implement the ESMJA with any suit design that requires enhanced mobility and/or suit sizing. Additionally, and of equal importance are the manufacturing techniques to be developed throughout the proposed effort that can be utilized for any pressure suit hard mobility joints.

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.


Form Generated on 09-18-07 17:50