NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 X8.02-9169
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Space-Rated Batteries
PROPOSAL TITLE: Graphene Nanocomposite Cathode for Advanced Space Battery

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Luna Innovations Incorporated
1 Riverside Circle, Suite 400
Roanoke, VA 24016 - 4962
(540) 769-8430

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Zhiguo Zhou
521 Bridge Street
Danville, VA 24541 - 1405
(434) 483-4234

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 1
End: 4

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
High efficiency power systems are needed for NASA's future human exploration of space and such power systems must have advanced safety feature and provide high specific energy and high volumetric energy density. Luna Innovations propose to develop novel rechargeable battery with advanced non-toxic and safe anode and cathode materials. Aggressive weight and volume performance improvements over state-of-the-art lithium-ion batteries will be achieved for use in NASA's size-sensitive space vehicles. The proposed graphene nanocomposite-based cathode can be used in coupling with advanced silicon anodes that are much safer compared to lithium metal anodes used in conventional Li-ion batteries. The new battery technology incorporates novel graphene/nanosheet composite in the cathode design to provide higher efficiency for active material utilization and improved reversibility in the electrochemical reactions thus to provide higher energy density and greater cycling stability. We anticipate that the new rechargeable battery will meet all of the metric goals including safety, stability, cycle life and power that specified by NASA for its human-rated space applications.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
There are potentially many different NASA applications for safe, high specific energy, and high energy density power systems for future NASA Exploration missions. Possible applications include extravehicular activities, landers and rovers. Due to its high volumetric energy density, the proposed battery may find wide applications in any weight- and volume-sensitive vehicular systems that NASA may need to accomplish its space missions. The safety feature arising from eliminating the use of lithium metal anode makes Luna's battery a better choice for human-rated power systems. Essentially, Luna's new battery will provide light-weight, high-reliability and safety replacements for many NASA applications that currently use lithium-ion batteries.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed battery could be used for military applications as light-weight, high-energy power sources for autonomous Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UVA), which requires aggressive weight and volume performance improvements over state-of-the-art lithium-ion based systems. In these small or micro UVAs, our battery may be used in combination with solar panels to provide power during the daytime and the night for continuous no-landing operations in remote or hostile regions. Due to the improvements in safety and energy density Luna' battery may also find uses in commercial products such as electrical vehicles (EV) and hybrid electric vehicles (HEV) where they can completely and partially replace internal combustion engine and gasoline.

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.)

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:43