NASA SBIR 2010 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 10-2 X14.02-9524
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Advanced Food Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Non-Thermal Sanitation By Atmospheric Pressure Plasma

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Orbital Technologies Corporation
Space Center, 1212 Fourier Drive
Madison, WI 53717 - 1961
(608) 827-5000

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Ross W Remiker
1212 Fourier Drive
Madison, WI 53717 - 1961
(608) 229-2746

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 4
End: 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
ORBITEC's Non-Thermal Sanitation by Atmospheric Pressure Plasma technology sanitizes fresh fruits and vegetables without the use of consumable chemicals and without significantly raising the temperature of the food, so food taste and quality are not affected. Atmospheric pressure plasma is well known to be highly effective in promoting oxidation, enhancing molecular dissociation, and producing free radicals and other types of high energies. It has recently attracted much attention in the food industry due to its potential for being a non-thermal and highly effective sanitation method. The proposed technology will support surface sanitation of delivered fresh fruit and vegetables, and freshly prepared foods in a space-based habitat. It can function in reduced gravity and pressure environments, and is efficient in terms of waste and resource use. During this Phase 2 effort, designs of the primary operating components of the system will be refined and incorporated into a plasma processing chamber prototype capable of treating one to two servings of fresh food at a time. The antimicrobial performance of the prototype will be tested with a number of fruits/vegetables and different inoculums. The prototype will also be evaluated for the effect of plasma treatment on food quality.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Non-thermal plasma can be used to sanitize fresh foods grown in the space habitat and to sanitize raw ingredients either produced on orbit or sent up as bulk raw ingredients. Non-thermal plasma does not raise the temperature of the treated food significantly, so it has minimal effect on food quality. Non-thermal plasma can replace chemical disinfectants in most applications. The technology has low system mass, consumable mass, and power consumption. The function of this technology is insensitive to reduced cabin pressure and reduced gravity.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Terrestrially, non-thermal plasma sanitation technology can reduce the number of cases of food-borne illness due to contaminations by sanitizing food at the point of use, such as a restaurant, or at a food processing facility. This technology can be used in place of chlorinated water, which can leave a residue and is not entirely effective, and irradiation, which generally has a poor public perception.

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.)
Crop Production (see also Biological Health/Life Support)
Food (Preservation, Packaging, Preparation)

Form Generated on 12-15-11 17:36