NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-1 S3.03-9462
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Power Generation and Conversion
PROPOSAL TITLE: FDM-HaWK, A High Performance Compact Modular Solar Array

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
MMA Design LLC
PO Box 7804
Loveland, CO 80537 - 0804
(303) 258-7365

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Thomas J Harvey
PO Box 7804
Loveland, CO 80537 - 0804
(303) 258-7365

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

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Developing a next generation high performance solar array with significant reduction in size and weight will result in improved NASA mission capabilities at lower cost. Photovoltaic cell technology is evolving rapidly to the point solar array structural and mechanical systems do not fully optimize system level mass and volume performance potential. MMA Design LLC (MMA) proposes to develop a compact deployable modular solar array concept with next generation cost and performance improvements. A solar array is proposed that is mechanically simple while meeting the support requirements of currently available solar cells, as well as future higher performance cells. The solar array decreases production and system costs through modularity and simplicity, increases the power to stowed volume ratio (W/m3), and increases specific power (W/kg), thus exceeding the performance of the existing state-of-the-art (SOA) systems.
MMA proposes to advance the SOA in photovoltaic power systems by developing a Fan Deployed Modular High Watts per Kilogram (FDM-HaWK) advanced solar array consisting of an innovative fan deployed structure. On-going research at MMA in innovative and manufacturable solar array components, mechanisms and deployable structures makes the proposed solar array feasible and lower risk. The proposed FDM-HaWK uses many identical modular solar array panels in two-string configurations to reduce cell stringing and laydown costs. The significance to NASA of our innovative solution is the reduction of solar array costs while producing over 300 watts per kilogram (W/kg) with 32% efficient next generation solar cells in a 5.6 kW solar array wing. Based on current projections for next generation cell performance by Spectrolab, the proposed system will be capable of producing over 350 W/kg by the year 2017. From the perspective of packaging efficiency, the FDM-HaWK will produce 51 kW/m3 with existing qualified triple junction cells and 63 kW/m3 by the year 2017.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Potential future NASA applications that can benefit from the proposed development include WFIRST, GOES-R, smallsats, Mars platforms and future science missions comparable to Glory, LRO and Juno. The current state of practice in solar arrays involves a highly customized NRE design and qualification effort for each spacecraft mission that doesn't leverage the significant commonality among applications. The result is that each solar array is unique, costly, and long lead. This approach is contrary to what is required to support NASA needs: next generation performance, low cost inventory strategies, flexible response to mission needs, and modular architecture that is semi-customizable and compatible across multiple missions.
Investments are required now in the development of next generation solar arrays that are vital to meeting the future needs of NASA, delivering higher performance at lower cost. Future NASA science missions employing Earth-orbiting observation spacecraft and exploration spacecraft that require high reliability, lower mass and volume, higher mass specific power, and improved efficiency can leverage the next generation performance enhancements of MMA's FDM-HaWK solar array while lowering total system costs. As the emphasis grows on smaller and more capable spacecraft, a modular and scalable solar power architecture increases in value to serve multiple missions across various spacecraft platforms.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Potential non-NASA commercial applications include ORS TACSAT 5 and follow-on missions, NOAA and Air Force Space Weather missions, NRO and commercial imaging platforms, plug-n-play architectures and subsequent missions, next generation Loral and other commercial spacecraft bus.
A low cost modular solar array architecture is desirable across multiple customer applications, especially when delivering next generation performance metrics.

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.)
Coatings/Surface Treatments
Machines/Mechanical Subsystems
Maneuvering/Stationkeeping/Attitude Control Devices
Sources (Renewable, Nonrenewable)
Spacecraft Design, Construction, Testing, & Performance (see also Engineering; Testing & Evaluation)

Form Generated on 09-03-10 12:12