NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-1 S2.01-8167
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Precision Spacecraft Formations for Telescope Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE: Precision Electrospray Thruster Assembly (PETA)

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Espace Inc.
30 Lynn Avenue
Hull, MA 02045 - 2216
(781) 925-3893

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Francois Martel
fm@space.mit.edu
30 Lynn Avenue
Hull, MA 02045 - 2216
(781) 925-3893

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
New low cost, low volume, low power, rugged electrospray thrusters will be ideal as actuators for precision thrusting, if provided with precision high voltage power supplies. The small thrusters show minimum thrusts of 1.2 nanoNewton, and thrusts scalable in a wide range to hundreds of microNewtons, with an ISp of 3500 sec. We propose in Phase I to develop, test and characterize with electrospray thrusters a high-precision high-voltage power supply optimized for fine control of the thrusters, and designed to support accurate formation flying of space telescope elements, and precision alignment and stabilization of space platforms. The Phase I HV supply design will be developed in Phase II into a cubesat format Precision Electrospray Thruster Assembly including thrusters, and ready for flight tests. At the end of Phase II PETA units will be provided as protoflight avionics to be flown, tested and qualified.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
PETA will be applicable to NASA projects requiring precision thrusting for accurate and stable sensor pointing, accurate flight formations or precise alignment and orientation of systems or free-flying subsystems. There are applications for space interferometric observatories such as MAXIM, for gravitational waves detectors such as LISA, for geodetic "free falling" observatories and for large telescopes with free flying mirrors or focal plane arrays. PETA also applies to cubesat and nanosat experiments, opening new opportunities for well controlled clusters of sensors, automatized rendezvous and assembly of large structure from small modules.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
PETA is also applicable to missions from other US government agencies, and for fine thrust control of commercial satellites. Accurate formation flying facilitated by PETA opens new areas of observation of interest to different agencies.

TECHNOLOGY TAXONOMY MAPPING (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.)
Actuators & Motors
Maneuvering/Stationkeeping/Attitude Control Devices
Microfabrication (and smaller; see also Electronics; Mechanical Systems; Photonics)
Positioning (Attitude Determination, Location X-Y-Z)
Relative Navigation (Interception, Docking, Formation Flying; see also Control & Monitoring; Planetary Navigation, Tracking, & Telemetry)
Spacecraft Instrumentation & Astrionics (see also Communications; Control & Monitoring; Information Systems)
Telescope Arrays


Form Generated on 09-03-10 12:12