NASA SBIR 2012 Solicitation


PROPOSAL NUMBER: 12-1 H5.01-9689
SUBTOPIC TITLE: Expandable/Deployable Structures
PROPOSAL TITLE: TRUSSELATOR - On-Orbit Fabrication of High Performance Support Structures for Solar Arrays

SMALL BUSINESS CONCERN (Firm Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Tethers Unlimited
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR/PROJECT MANAGER (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Robert Hoyt
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

CORPORATE/BUSINESS OFFICIAL (Name, E-mail, Mail Address, City/State/Zip, Phone)
Robert Hoyt
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113
Bothell, WA 98011 - 8808
(425) 486-0100

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

Technology Available (TAV) Subtopics
Expandable/Deployable Structures is a Technology Available (TAV) subtopic that includes NASA Intellectual Property (IP). Do you plan to use the NASA IP under the award?

TECHNICAL ABSTRACT (Limit 2000 characters, approximately 200 words)
TUI proposes to develop and demonstrate a process for fabricating high-performance composite truss structures on-orbit and integrating them with thin film solar cell assemblies to enable the deployment of very large solar arrays with lower cost and increased power-per-mass than SOA array technologies. On-orbit fabrication enables order-of-magnitude improvements in packing efficiency compared to state of the art deployables technologies such as coilable booms, deployable masts, and inflatable structures, and also enables geometric optimizations to provide order-of-magnitude improvements in structural performance. The proposed effort will build upon an existing TRL-3 truss-fabrication mechanism design, called the "Trusselator", which adapts techniques used in 3D printing and automated fiber placement to fabricate arbitrarily-long composite trusses using compactly-wound spools of textile materials as a feedstock. The Phase I SBIR effort will evolve this design to enable fabrication of high-performance truss structures using space-worthy materials, and develop methods for integrating these truss structures with solar cell blankets and the necessary wiring. The Phase II effort will prepare an advanced prototype and mature it to TRL-5 through environmental testing in the lab, preparing it for orbital validation testing in follow-on efforts.

POTENTIAL NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
By improving both the stowed volume and mass required for support structures by an order of magni-tude, the Trusselator technology will enable NASA/HEOMD programs to deploy very large, scalable (30-300+kW) solar array systems at lower cost than SOA deployables technologies. The Trusselator technology will also enable improved performance and lower cost for a wide range of systems requiring large support structures, such as large solar sails, thermal shrouds, manned stations, and orbital propellant depots.

POTENTIAL NON-NASA COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS (Limit 1500 characters, approximately 150 words)
The Trusselator technology will enable DoD space programs and commercial space ventures to construct large, high-performance space structures for missions such as phased-array radar systems, sparse aper-ture radar for orbital debris detection, long-baseline geolocation, and commercial manned stations.

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.)
In Situ Manufacturing
Joining (Adhesion, Welding)
Robotics (see also Control & Monitoring; Sensors)
Spacecraft Design, Construction, Testing, & Performance (see also Engineering; Testing & Evaluation)

Form Generated on 03-28-13 15:21