NASA STTR 2011 Solicitation

FORM B - PROPOSAL SUMMARY


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 11-1 T5.01-9938
RESEARCH SUBTOPIC TITLE: Technologies for Planetary Compositional Analysis and Mapping
PROPOSAL TITLE: Lab-on-a-Robot Platform for in-situ Planetary Compositional Analysis

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (SBC): RESEARCH INSTITUTION (RI):
NAME: HJ Science & Technology, Inc. NAME: University of Texas, San Antonio
STREET: 187 Saratoga Avenue STREET: One UTSA Circle
CITY: Santa Clara CITY: San Antonio
STATE/ZIP: CA  95050 - 6657 STATE/ZIP: TX  78249 - 1644
PHONE: (408) 464-3873 PHONE: (210) 458-7428

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Hong Jiao
hong_jiao@yahoo.com
187 Saratoga Avenue
Santa Clara, CA 95050 - 6657
(408) 464-3873

Estimated Technology Readiness Level (TRL) at beginning and end of contract:
Begin: 4
End: 6

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
HJ Science & Technology, Inc. and the University of Texas at San Antonio propose a joint venture to demonstrate the feasibility of a mobile "lab-on-a-robot" platform capable of in-situ, high throughput, and simultaneous identification and characterization of universal classes of ions, molecules, and biomolecules for NASA planetary and small body surface chemistry studies. The innovation of the proposed technology combines contactless conductivity detection, on-chip automated sample processing, miniaturized instrumentation integration, and robotic and wireless technologies. If successful, such a mobile platform for the miniaturized instrument will lay the groundwork for future NASA in situ robotic missions. In Phase I, we will show the basic functionalities of the proposed technology by demonstrating the capability of (1) the contactless conductivity detection to detect selective ions that are relevant to the aqueous chemistry and reactivity of the Martian surface material, (2) controlling the device as well as collecting and analyzing the data wirelessly, and (3) integrating the contactless conductivity detection technology into our current optical detection based instrumentation. In Phase II, the main effort will direct towards the development of a "lab-on-a-robot" prototype to be delivered to JPL, which will include optical and contactless conductivity detection capabilities, wireless communication, and on-chip automated sample processing.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed "lab-on-a-robot" technology has great potential for NASA in-situ planetary and small body surface chemistry studies. In particular, the mobile platform in conjunction with the contactless conductivity detection is ideally suited for simultaneous inorganic ion detection and analysis complementary to the "lab-on-a-chip" miniaturization of MECA's wet chemistry laboratory at JPL. The successful research effort will result in reduction in size, weight, power consumption, and cost of in-situ space probes. In addition, the proposed technology can also be used for on-chip biosensors, electrochemical sensors, on-chip sample separations, reactions, derivatizations, as well as for fluid positioning, mixing, metering, storage, and filtering systems, clinical diagnostics, spacecraft and biosphere environmental monitoring, and toxicology studies.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The proposed "lab-on-a-robot" has broader commercial applications including monitoring environmental pollutants that are a potential concern for human health on Earth. The proposed technology is particularly relevant to in-situ analysis of environmental samples because currently the samples have to be physically acquired, transported, and then processed in the laboratory. Exposure of personnel to untested environments, sample degradation, contamination, and labor-intensive analytical protocols obviate the necessity for testing systems capable of performing on-site analysis and transmit the results autonomously. Compared with conventional laboratory based measurement techniques, the in-situ measurement capability of our portable platform offers important advantages including reduction in time and cost, real-time data for better and more timely decision making, and reduction in sample consumption.

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


Form Generated on 11-22-11 13:44