NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 X4.01-9175
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Space Suit Pressure Garment and Airlock Technologies
PROPOSAL TITLE: Organic Aerogels with Improved Resilience and Flexibility for Multifunctional Protection in Spacesuits

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Aspen Aerogels, Inc.
30 Forbes Road, Building B
Northborough, MA 01532 - 2501
(508) 691-1161

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Roxana Trifu
rtrifu@aerogel.com
30 Forbes Road, Bldg B
Northborough, MA 01532 - 2501
(508) 691-1161

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 2
End: 3

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Aspen Aerogels Inc. proposes to develop high resilience polymeric aerogel for use as a multifunctional spacesuit material which will significantly improve human comfort and maneuverability in advanced extravehicular activity (EVA). The proposed aerogel material will exhibit excellent elastic recovery, flexibility, durability, temperature sensitive water permeability, along with excellent thermal insulation properties at low weight and volume. The proposed developments will result in materials with excellent resilience and flexibility which can be used for advanced space suits or garments with increased comfort and maneuverability. The novel resilient aerogels will overcome the weak, brittle, dusty nature of conventional inorganic aerogels, and the high compression set and lack of durability of the organic aerogels previously developed. The aerogels will be multifunctional as they will provide superior thermal insulation and inherent radiation protection suitable for NASA EVA suits and exploration habitats. These aerogel materials are also applicable to NASA's space hardware and vehicles as well as many other aerospace, military, and commercial insulation applications.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The lightweight resilient aerogel will improve the human comfort of thermal insulation required for high performance spacesuits for exploration systems. The material developed in this program will have a variety of applications in the aerospace industry and within NASA. Insulation in EVA suits, habitats, gloves, footwear, and helmets could utilize the new aerogel materials. The resilient aerogels will provide thermal and radiation protection in various environments from liquid nitrogen temperatures to +200?C, under air, water and vacuum conditions. The novel materials can be easily designed to provide different resilience and toughness and could be used for different areas of the space suit or in garments. The excellent durability of the rubbery aerogels facilitates their use in applications for difficult vibration and acoustic environments.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The resulting insulation system developed from this program will also have far reaching effects in both military and commercial applications. Other potential applications include use as insulation in commercial and military aircraft, cryogenic tanks, liquefied gas transport, dive suits, gloves, footwear, systems for warming, storing, and/or transporting food and medicine, sleeping bags and pads, military and recreational tents, etc. The new resilient aerogels can be recycled for use as impact modifiers and/or filler materials for conventional plastics.

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.)
Heat Exchange
Smart/Multifunctional Materials


Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43