NASA SBIR 2007 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 07-2 S1.05-8972
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Detector Technologies for UV, X-Ray, Gamma-Ray and Cosmic-Ray Instruments
PROPOSAL TITLE: Blocking Filters with Enhanced Throughput for X-Ray Microcalorimetry

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Luxel Corporation
515 Tucker Avenue
Friday Harbor, WA 98250 - 1879
(360) 378-4137

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Jacob Betcher
PO Box 1879
Friday Harbor, WA 98250 - 1879
(360) 378-4137

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
NASA will fly x-ray microcalorimeters on several mission payloads scheduled within the next 5 years: New and improved IR/Visible blocking filters are urgently needed to realize the full potential and throughput of these missions. The innovation proposed, high transmission polyimide support mesh, will replace the nickel mesh used in previous blocking filter designs. Polyimide's composition affords high transparency to x-rays, especially above 3 keV. Phase 1 prototypes demonstrated 11-15% higher transmission than comparable nickel mesh across the UV-Visible-NIR range. With development of the Phase 1 process in Phase 2, the mesh will be optimized for strength, transmission, integration with filter materials, and filter lifetime; it will include deicing capability as required. Lithographic production means adaptability to meet future mission-specific filter performance requirements. The Phase 2 project will achieve a flight readiness level of 5-6 for blocking filters using the new mesh. Phase 1 results show that with successful process development, the proposed high transmission polyimide mesh will significantly improve mission throughput and effective area for microcalorimeter payloads on proposed NASA missions such as Spectrum-X-Gamma and NeXT in the near term as well as Constellation –X.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Enhanced filter throughput is needed technology to meet NASA's Universe and Sun-Earth Connection program goals. The new high transmission mesh will find application in:
• Blocking filters for x-ray microcalorimeter spectrometers proposed for Spectrum Roentgen Gamma, the New X-ray Telescope, Micro-X, and Constellation-X, particularly for observations at higher energies.
• X-ray telescope entrance filters
• Soft x-ray and EUV bandpass filters for heliophysics and astrophysics
• Energetic particle detector filters
• Thin foil filters for space-based astronomy that require robust, highly transmissive support mesh

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Extreme ultraviolet and x-ray filters for the GOES satellite series.
Thermal barrier windows for laboratory-based astrophysics using x-ray microcalorimeters
Windows for energy dispersive spectroscopy (EDS) systems used with scanning electron microscopy.
New support mesh for zirconium pellicles used in extreme ultraviolet lithography (EUVL).

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.

Optical & Photonic Materials

Form Generated on 10-23-08 13:36