NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 S3.04-9151
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Propulsion Systems
PROPOSAL TITLE: Highly Durable Catalysts for Ignition of Advanced Monopropellants

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Eltron Research & Development, Inc.
4600 Nautilus Court South
Boulder, CO 80301 - 3241
(303) 530-0263

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
James H White
4600 Nautilus Court South
Boulder, CO 80301 - 3241
(303) 530-0263 Extension :114

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 3
End: 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Monopropellants are readily ignited or decomposed over a bed of solid catalyst. A serious limitation of existing catalysts in the ignition of advanced monopropellants is limited thermal stability. The recent emphasis on improved performance of monopropellant technology (e.g., with AF M315E and LGP 1846), has led to the need for advanced materials possessing exceptional properties. Increased specific impulse monopropellants will require ignition catalysts possessing exceptional thermal stability and ruggedness: Existing alumina supported iridium catalysts do not possess these characteristics. This proposed SBIR Phase I will be addressed to the further development of thermally stable high temperature ignition catalysts, optimization of their mechanical strength and erosion resistance, and employment in small propulsion devices. Eltron previously identified a catalyst which displayed activity comparable to alumina supported iridium (Shell 405) but which tolerates temperatures in excess of at least 1900 degrees C, is markedly less dense, is precious metals-free, and is much less expensive. Phase II will optimize the catalyst, demonstrate activity and ruggedness with a number of monopropellant systems, scale up catalyst preparation, and conduct test firings with the catalyst system.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Phase I will result in the identification of rugged and thermally stable catalysts and catalyst operating and use specifications for the ignition of advanced monopropellants. The technology developed will find use in the ignition of advanced monopropellants in high specific impulse applications. Use in reaction control systems is expected. Additional uses in liquid gas generators, auxiliary power units (APUs), emergency power units (EPUs), and refractory linings can be envisioned.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Applications in military and commercial monopropellant systems are anticipated. The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL, )Northrop-Grumman, and Aerojet have previously expressed strong interest in catalysts under development. In addition, applications are expected in combustion and incineration; catalytic coatings in gas turbines, ovens, furnaces, gasifiers, reformers, and other platforms; thermal barrier coatings; catalytic NOx traps; and coatings on heating and incandescent elements. Companies involved in manufacturing catalysts and propulsion systems as well as those concerned with catalytic combustion or incineration, explosives, ceramic coatings, and emissions control would find interest in the materials being developed.

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.)
Maneuvering/Stationkeeping/Attitude Control Devices

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43