NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 S1.08-8138
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In Situ Airborne, Surface, and Submersible Instruments for Earth Science
PROPOSAL TITLE: Ultrasensitive Analyzer for Realtime, In-Situ Airborne and Terrestrial Measurements of OCS, CO2, and CO

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Los Gatos Research
67 East Evelyn Avenue, Suite 3
Mountain View, CA 94041 - 1518
(650) 965-7772

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Manish Gupta
67 East Evelyn Avenue, Suite 3
Mountain View, CA 94041 - 1518
(650) 965-7772

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 8

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
In this Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) effort, Los Gatos Research (LGR) proposes to employ its patented mid-infrared Off-Axis Integrated Cavity Output Spectroscopy (Off-Axis ICOS) technique to develop a compact OCS, CO2, and CO analyzer. This sensor will provide rapid (up to 10 Hz), real-time, highly accurate (OCS, CO2, and CO to better than plus or minus 20 pptv, plus or minus 0.2 ppmv, and plus or minus 5 ppbv respectively, 1 sigma at 1 Hz) measurements of these important trace gases with minimal calibration. The instrument will also report water vapor concentrations for calculations of dry mole fractions. Moreover, the SBIR instrument will be capable of both terrestrial and airborne deployments (e.g. DC-8, WB-57, ER-2, Alpha Jet...) to provide data in the troposphere, tropopause, and stratosphere. The resulting system will allow researchers in NASA's Earth Science Division to acquire data that complements satellite observations made from several missions in the Earth Observing System (EOS). The in-situ data will provide higher spatial resolution and vertical profiling near highly inhomogeneous OCS and CO2 sources, helping to better understand stratospheric aerosol loading and gross CO2 flux between plants and the atmosphere, both critical needs for improved climate modeling.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The primary objective of the NASA Earth Science Division is to determine how the global environment is changing, what drives these changes, and the potential consequences for human civilization. In order to better research atmospheric properties, NASA requires instrumentation that is capable of measuring several key gaseous species, including OCS, CO2, CO, and H2O. Carbonyl sulfide (OCS) is currently monitored by both remote sensing and extractive sampling. As a complement to and validation of these remote systems, NASA has conducted several airborne campaigns to obtain higher resolution OCS measurements. For example, both the INTEX-NA and Transport and Chemical Evolution over the Pacific (TRACE-P) campaigns acquired canisters of ambient air samples at frequent intervals (e.g. 1 – 5 minutes) for off-line laboratory analysis. As researchers become more aware of the role of OCS in stratospheric aerosol formation and its potential as a carbon cycle tracer for photosynthesis, NASA requires new technologies that make stand-alone, in-situ measurements of OCS with faster time response (e.g. 1 Hz) and comparable accuracy aboard both airborne and terrestrial platforms. Additional measurements of CO2, CO, and H2O are also necessary to provide information on carbon dioxide respiration (e.g. OCS/CO2 ratio), combustion emissions (e.g. CO), and dry-mole fractions (e.g. correction for water vapor).

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Besides its importance to NASA, the development of a highly sensitive, mid-infrared trace gas analyzer has several commercial applications. In Phase III, LGR will target two potential markets for products resulting from the SBIR analyzer: environmental research laboratories and isotope measurement laboratories. A preliminary market analysis suggests 5-year revenue of $8 – $15M for these two markets alone.

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.)
Analytical Instruments (Solid, Liquid, Gas, Plasma, Energy; see also Sensors)
Chemical/Environmental (see also Biological Health/Life Support)
Optical/Photonic (see also Photonics)

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43