NASA SBIR 2008 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 08-2 X4.02-8428
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Advanced Radiation Shielding Materials and Structures
PROPOSAL TITLE: Multifunctional B/C Fiber Composites for Radiation Shielding

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Materials Modification, Inc.
2721-D Merrilee Drive
Fairfax, VA 22031 - 4429
(703) 560-1371

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Krishnaswamy K Kasturirangan
2721-D Merrilee Dr
Fairfax, VA 22031 - 4429
(703) 560-1371

Expected Technology Readiness Level (TRL) upon completion of contract: 5 to 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Components of lunar habitat and crew modules in the lunar vehicle are constantly exposed to hazardous space conditions, such as ionizing radiation, electromagnetic interference, orbital debris, and solar flares. The safe functioning of crew and instruments and survivability require effective radiation protection. There is also the desire to reduce the weight of parts in Space missions. In Phase I, Materials Modification Inc. developed a series of novel multifunctional composites using a proprietary high-hydrogen epoxy incorporating boron and carbon fiber layers with enhanced radiation shielding, structural, thermal and electrical properties compared with high density polyethylene (HDPE). Radiation shielding of B/C composites against high-energy neutrons were measured. The boron composites had approximately the same shielding effectiveness as HDPE and aluminum for the energetic neutrons. This is remarkable since the multifunctional properties of these hybrid boron/carbon fiber composites offer so much more than the overall properties of HDPE or Al, especially in the area of lightweight structural applications for aerospace. In Phase II, a series of composite laminates with a range of %B will be fabricated using unidirectional boron fiber and unidirectional carbon fiber in a non-autoclave process. Mechanical properties of the most promising composite compositions, including lamina and laminate properties at cryo temperature, RT, and elevated temperature will be determined. Radiation shielding studies with energetic charged particles such as, protons, heavy ions, and neutrons that would simulate conditions encountered in space will be performed. By the end of the Phase II, we would have manufactured and tested several compositions that provide optimum radiation shielding. We plan to address specific NASA mission requirements with our partners Boeing, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin who have expressed great interest in the results of the Phase I effort.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Multifunctional structures that will be developed in this Phase II effort can protect crew in a spacecraft, crew exploration vehicle, lander, rover, or lunar habitat from Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR), Solar Energy Particles (SEP) and micrometeroid impact and at the same time keep both the weight of the structure and the cost of fabricating the structure to a minimum. Areas include structural N/P protected personnel areas, Electronic systems & instrument shielding and hardcase transfer containers, Structural shape-conforming Metal alloy and ceramic faced N/P backer composite, Flexible N/P shielding for supplemental N/P protective work garments and flexible N/P shielding for pressurized work/transfer tubes

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Land-based commercial applications of the composites developed in this project include linear particle accelerators, high-energy radiation rooms, cancer treatment facilities, nuclear power plants and MRI rooms where direct and secondary neutron and positron shielding are required.

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.

Radiation Shielding Materials

Form Generated on 08-03-09 13:26