NASA STTR 2011 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 T3.01-9950
RESEARCH SUBTOPIC TITLE: Technologies for Space Power and Propulsion
PROPOSAL TITLE: Controlled Canfield Joint as Improved Gimbal for Flywheel Systems

NAME: Balcones Technologies, LLC NAME: University of Texas - Center for Electromechanics
STREET: 10532 Grand Oak Circle STREET: P.O. Box 7726
CITY: Austin CITY: Austin
STATE/ZIP: TX  78750 - 3851 STATE/ZIP: TX  78713 - 7726
PHONE: (512) 918-1496 PHONE: (512) 471-6424

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Joseph H Beno
10532 Grand Oak Circle
Austin, TX 78750 - 3851
(512) 918-1496

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

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
Balcones Technologies, LLC proposes to adapt technologies developed by and resident in The University of Texas at Austin Center for Electromechanics (CEM) in the areas of dynamically controlled precision actuators and flywheel energy storage systems to address STTR 2011-1 Subtopic T3.01, Technologies for Space Power and Propulsion. In particular, our team will develop a concept design for a replacement to traditional flywheel gimbal systems that is based on a parallel kinematic structure proposed by Dr. Canfield in approximately 1997 as a carpal wrist joint, now commonly known as the Canfield Joint. The intended result will be a concept for an actively controlled Canfield-Joint Gimbal Replacement System (CGRS) that is considerably less expensive, simpler, and more reliable than current gimbal technology; does not require slip rings for power and control cables; does not have singularity issues, such as gimbal lock; and has relatively simple controls based on analytical kinematic solutions. Our proposed Phase I project will fully evaluate requirements, develop appropriate simulations of the kinematics and control system for a flywheel with magnetic bearings in the CGRS, develop a concept design of the CGRS, develop a commercialization and production plan, and develop a Phase II program plan to demonstrate the system with an existing high-speed flywheel system on magnetic bearings.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Our Canfield Joint Gimbal Replacement System will have applications across the full spectrum of NASA gimbal applications. The system can be configured to be passive or active, eliminates many issues and drawbacks with conventional gimbal systems, is more failsafe/reliable than convention gimbal systems and will be less expensive than conventional gimbal systems for high performance applications. Additionally, the CGRS offers simplified, more flexible, robust controls without kinematic singularities and with analytic solutions, which opens up a wide range of industrial applications currently being filled by other types of robotic manipulators (e.g., hexapod/Stewart Platforms). The load carrying capacity and the control system of the CGRS that will likely be the objective of our Phase II proposal will fit many industrial needs and the technology is scalable for much larger and much smaller high-precision and low-precision applications.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
Similar to the NASA applications, our Canfield Joint Gimbal Replacement System will have applications across the full spectrum of gimbal applications, especially in commercial and military satellites. Additionally, the controlled Canfield Joint will be designed with a range of motion, load capacity, precision, and accuracy that is compatible with many common and special purpose commercial manufacturing applications, especially those that benefit from very smooth, complex, and accurate positioning of relatively high loads. Finally, telescope systems will benefit from use of the Canfield Joint developed in our proposed program to replace their common use of hexapod positioning systems that have known singularity and control issues.

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.)
Actuators & Motors

Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:44