NASA SBIR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-2 S1.09-9077
SUBTOPIC TITLE: In Situ Sensors and Sensor Systems for Lunar and Planetary Science
PROPOSAL TITLE: Triple Isotope Water Analyzer for Extraplanetary Studies

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: 4
End: 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Los Gatos Research (LGR) proposes to employ Off-Axis ICOS to develop triple-isotope water analyzers for lunar and other extraplanetary exploration. This instrument will provide highly accurate quantification of δD,δ18O, and δ17O to better than ± 0.3 0/00, ± 0.1 0/00, and ± 0.15 0/00 respectively with minimal calibration or consumable standards. Moreover, due to the inherent benefits of Off-Axis ICOS, the analyzer will be selective, robust, and economical. In addition to being a strong candidate for extraplanetary exploration, the instrument will be deployed for field testing and research by scientists in NASA's Space Science and Astrobiology Division.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Recently, the Moon has been discovered to harbor large amounts of H2O ice. This ice is interesting for many reasons ranging from the practical to the scientific. The origin of this ice is unknown but there are seven sources that have been postulated: The Sun, the Earth, the Moon itself, comet impacts, asteroid impacts, interplanetary dust, and giant interstellar molecular clouds. Since each of these proposed sources have significantly differing isotopic values, high-precision measurements of water isotopes will help elucidate the origin and subsequent evolution of the lunar ice. Other potential NASA missions would also benefit from the proposed analyzer, including the Mars Mission, Europa-Jupiter System Mission, and Comet Sample Return Mission.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Besides its application to NASA, a compact, ultrasensitive water-isotope analyzer also has significant commercial applications for environmental research and medical diagnostics. A preliminary market analysis suggests 5-year revenue exceeding $20M for these two markets alone. The proposed work is essential in making these instruments more compact, rugged, and cost-competitive, and will thus enlarge the potential market size significantly.

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)
Biological Signature (i.e., Signs Of Life)
Chemical/Environmental (see also Biological Health/Life Support)

Form Generated on 11-06-12 18:12